Boots 101: Where to Invest

Boots 101: Where to Invest


As passionate bootmakers and collectors, we believe there are two ways to buy a boot. You can make a purchase, or you can make an investment. At HELM, the integrity of our materials and durability of our construction is a point of pride. We do things a little differently. When you buy with us, you’re not just adding to your wardrobe - you’re investing in craft. 


From the thickness of our hides to the integrity of our outsoles, here are the four qualities we ensure is in every pair we design and wear on our own feet. 



Quality Leather

Leather quality is established by both the type and grade of hide. Multiple brands can source from the same tannery and use entirely different grades of material. Like any investment, you get what you pay for. The thickness of the hide itself and the grain quality (full-grain vs. top grain) contributes to the overall comfort, sustainability, and wear pattern of your footwear.  All HELM hides are between 2mm and 3mm thick. Place your hand inside one of our boots, and you’ll be able to feel the difference. Thinner hides wear out faster and lose shape over the years, but we build footwear that last decades. We work exclusively with the highest quality, full-grain hides sourced from world renowned tanneries we trust, and they’re worth every penny. 




There’s more than one way to construct a pair of boots, and the HELM way has been honed by artisans over time. We employ Blake Rapid Stitch welting, a process developed in Italy for its sleek, streamlined aesthetic. Our midsoles are constructed from full leather, while a lower quality product often substitutes leather for particle board or stock. HELM outsoles are full leather construction, with rubber poured into a leather sole. Why does this matter? It establishes superior comfort, wear over wear. You won’t replace our boots every year. In fact, you’ll pass them down to the next generation.












To the naked eye, it’s difficult to distinguish between a true stacked leather vs. masonite heel. Manufacturers know this. It’s one of the most common corners that gets cut in production. Aesthetically the difference in construction looks negligible from the outside, but in terms of durability and quality, there’s a major discrepancy. HELM outsole heels are composed entirely of stacked leather. Other boots wrap masonite heels in an exterior leather layer. At HELM, we firmly believe it’s what’s on the inside that really counts. 




We pride ourselves on being obsessive over the small things. We live for the details. HELM boots feature a few bells and whistles we added in our quest for sustained comfort and long-lasting looks. Our profiles are always double (never single) stitched. We add extra padding to the tongue along with pull tabs and backstays for easy on and off durability. Our welts are genuine leather. These small upgrades add longevity to each pair. Your stitching will hold up. Your construction will endure. Your comfort will only improve. You can trust a pair of HELM.



Whether you bought your pair yesterday or ten years ago, we are here to help answer your questions. When you call or email in, you won't get an automated response. You'll speak directly with someone on our team who will work to find the solution that fits your specific question. For boots that were built to last a lifetime, there should be customer service that lasts just as long. We offer quality service and are here to answer any questions you have throughout the lifetime of your pair, either by phone or email at Prefer face-to-face but not in Austin? We also have virtual appointments available whether you're outside of the city or just unable to stop by in person.

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