Hard-Wearing School Shoes

hard wearing school shoes

What makes a hard-wearing school shoe? 

  1. Rubber Bumper
  2. Easy to Clean and Maintain
  3. Leather Uppers
  4. Injection Moulded Sole
  5. Build Quality and Price Trade-Off

From our many years of collective experience in the shoe trade, we have learned a few tricks that will help you select the right hard wearing school shoes, for tough wear as well as happy, healthy feet.

When picking out a hard-wearing children’s shoe, there is a really important compromise to consider between hard-wearing shoes and shoes that are just hard on your feet. We all know that welly boots can take a beating – unfortunately they can be really bad for your feet over extended periods. The right shoe for the right job is key after all your welly boots will do no harm, worn in small doses!

Thankfully there are some great hard wearing boy’s school shoes and hard-wearing girl’s school shoes on offer. The best of them make use of very clever design, carefully chosen materials and top manufacturing techniques to minimise the potential drawbacks of hard-wearing materials. We think about the placement of stitching, the use of soft leathers in the right places, soft but strong inner linings when picking our ranges. Some of these make shoes more expensive, but will genuinely provide a great fitting, comfortable shoe that breathes really well and can stand up to some serious wear and tear!

Top 5 Features of Hard-Wearing School Shoes

1. Rubber Bumpers

Hard Wearing School Shoes Rubber Bumper

Some of the best examples are inspired by street and skate fashion, with a great example in our Converse Kids range. A rubber bumper on the front and back helps fend off the bumps and scrapes. Fitting these well is the key to doing it right – the hard rubber toe cap needs a careful fit check to ensure toes have the right amount of room to move. We recommend getting a qualified fitter to check these over every time to be sure.

2. Easy Clean & Care

Hard Wearing School Shoes Easy to Clean

Keeping muck off can be hard work and contribute to the early end of a pair of shoes.  Shiny patent shoes are easy to wipe clean and do not require polish either. Ask any colleague in our stores whether you can throw a shoe in the washing machine. It can be really damaging to a shoe – unless it has been specially designed to withstand the machine. There are however a couple of handy options for this, including kids Clarks school shoes.

3. Leather Uppers

Hard Wearing School Shoes Leather Upper

When shoes are going to get scuffed, beware the false economy of a cheaper synthetic fake leather upper. A leather upper is a flexible and breathable material (great for healthy feet) but more importantly for hard wear, you can polish it back to near-perfection when it gets a scrape. Great product like Pedag Scuff Cover can really cover up the bad ones too.

4. Injection Moulded Soles

Hard Wearing School Shoes Direct Injection PU Soles

Sounds clever and it is. The soles are injected in by a machine and the bond is way tougher than glue. The Polyurethane material used is also much harder wearing than rubber or resin soles and even better, it’s lighter and more flexible. Check out our Primigi school shoes for PU choices and usually pretty similar in price to Clarks, which do not use this technology.

5. Build Quality & Price

We work hard to source quality and value for money shoes in our Kids ranges. Generally, a higher price means higher specification and that often means both stronger and lighter materials are used. Leather which has been carefully selected – not just the cheapest – is naturally tougher but also more flexible. Little details like a premium Velcro will last a little longer. A cleverly designed sole unit will wear a little harder but remain flexible and supportive (not just stiff and hard). Every stitch and spot of glue will be done with more care and attention when the quality control bar is set higher.

All of these subtle differences mean that paying more can be well worth it in terms of hard wear. Don’t be afraid to pay more for shoes that can and will look good, and feel good, for longer. It is worth noting that designer labels and high-fashion styling can cost a lot more, but not wear very well at all. Ask us for advice if you are not sure, we’re happy to help and advise.

hard-wearing Boys School Shoes

1. Geox Savage Bungee, £52.00

Geox Savage Bungee Hard Wearing School Shoes

These boys Velcro shoes are robust and hard-wearing, with additional overlay panels and reinforced toe bumpers for durability. The leather uppers are ideal for keeping feet cool, comfortable and fresh and there is a water-resistant membrane built into these shoes – great for wet weather.

 2. Superfit Storm Shoe Gore-Tex, £65.00

Superfit Storm Shoe Gore Tex Boy's School Shoes

At the higher end of the price-scale is Superfit’s Storm Shoe. Featuring a GORE-TEX membrane, these waterproof school shoes for boys are designed to keep feet 100% dry whatever the weather. GORE-TEX is also breathable so maintains a cool and comfortable climate for little feet. The moulded sole unit has traction details and an extended outsole for durability and improved grip.

3. Clarks Rex Stride, £44

Clarks Rex Stride Boys School Shoes

These Clarks boy’s school shoes are sure to be a sellout style for us this season. Not only do they have dino-inspired features like the claw print and dinosaur footprint, they also have an extended toe bumper for additional durability.

4. Vans Seldan Youth, £37.00

Vans Seldan Youth School Shoes

Vans are known for their comfy and casual styling and these all-black Vans are ideal for school shoes. Still on-trend but without breaking the rules, these boys black Vans have a breathable canvas upper. The rubber waffle sole unit offers additional grip and the rubber toe bumper is durable.

Our Top hard-wearing Girls School Shoes

1. Lelli Kelly Elsa Dolly, £49.99

Lelli Kelly Elsa Dolly Girls School Shoes

These Lelli Kelly girls shoes are pretty, smart and comfy. These Mary Jane school shoes have a Velcro strap to ensure a secure fit and are easy to get on and off. The patent upper is soft and flexible and the outsole extends up the toe bumper for additional durability. Cushioning around the collar and the padded footbed provide a super comfy fit from the very first moment.

2. Clarks Scooter Jump, £44.00

Clarks Scooter Jump Girls Hard Wearing School Shoes

These Clarks girls school shoes are a modern Mary Jane shoe with a gemstone star on the black patent upper and a toe bumper for added protection. The sole unit is made from a hardwearing rubber outsole. There is a breathable leather footbed to provide a comfy feel and personalised fit.

3. Geox Casey Lace, £55

Geox Casey Lace Girls School Shoes

Geox are well known for their harder-wearing shoes and these Geox girl’s school shoes are just that. The chunky sole unit offers additional traction whilst the patent leather upper is easy to maintain. Secure and adjustable, these hard-wearing school shoes are perfect for her feet.

4. Superfit Bill, £18

Superfit Bill Unisex School Shoes

Whether you call them indoor shoes or plimsolls, these Superfit unisex school shoes are an ideal choice for staying on budget. The gym shoes have a lightweight sole unit that is flexible and offers increased grip. The Velcro strap offers an easy and quick fastening, perfect for little feet that want to be on the go!

Check out our collection of all kids school shoes today!