How to tell if shoes are non-slip? Learn the science

Last Updated on January 24, 2024

Shoes are what help us to stand up. We all wear shoes starting from childhood. But sometimes, wearing non slip shoes can be very beneficial for you, especially if you are working in an environment that has wet or oily floors. But how to tell if shoes are non-slip?

Although the concept of purchasing a pair of non-slip shoes may appear to be straightforward, it might not be what you think. There are many different types of materials used to make these shoes, and what makes them not slip on a particular surface might not work on an other type of material and vice versa.

One should consider their foot size and shape before choosing what kind of shoe to buy. Some people have long feet whereas some have short feet; some have narrow feet while others have wide feet. One must consider what kind of shoe will best fit their feet.

measure foot size properly before going for non slip work shoes

It is essential to consider what kinds of shoes are suitable for surfaces and what kinds of work one does while wearing nonslip shoes.

Shoe soles can wear out quickly when someone has to walk on an oily surface all day. They may be slick for some individuals who require them. If one needs to wear these shoes frequently, buy a pair that fits well and is comfortable to wear.

wet floors for non slip work boots

When buying Slip-resistant work shoes

When buying slip-resistant work boots, one should keep in mind what kind of flooring they will be using the work shoes on and what their job entailed while wearing them. One should also consider what size and what style of shoe are best for their needs.

when buying slip resistant work boots focus on the out sole of the slip on work boots. Whether it is rubber sole or leather sole.

How to tell if shoes are non slip ? One another way to find this out is that there are two main types of slip-resistant shoes, made from leather and a rubber sole. If the pair you are considering has these features most likely it is the one you are looking for.

Leather Sole 

Boots made with leather tend to be more stylish but are typically not as slip-resistant as those made of rubber. Wearing work boots on any type of floor can vary the degree to which they are slip-resistant.

Rubber Sole

Rubber-soled shoes are recommended for rough surfaces because they are oil-resistant. Work boots of this type provide good traction on all types of flooring. Workers can choose from a variety of rubber styles and colors to suit their needs and preferences.  


No matter what kind of non-slip work shoe one decides to purchase, make sure it has a proper heel counter. It will stabilize the ankle while standing and walking on slick surfaces. This should prevent any potential accidents that could lead to injuries that may affect one’s ability to work safely at their job.

How to tell if Shoes are Non Slip & What Makes it Non Slip ?

To determine if shoes are non-slip or slip-resistant, there are several indicators to look out for. First, check the material of the outsole. Non-slip shoes typically have outsoles made of rubber or specialized slip-resistant materials that offer better traction. Next, examine the tread pattern on the sole. Slip-resistant shoes tend to have deep and multidirectional treads that help channel away liquids and debris, improving grip.

Some shoes may also feature specific markings or symbols on the outsole, such as “non-slip” or “slip-resistant” labels, or icons depicting a shoe with an “X” or a person slipping. Additionally, certain shoes may display a COF rating, which measures their slip resistance on different surfaces. Look for shoes that comply with the ASTM F2913-11 standard, as this ensures a minimum level of slip resistance.

It can also be helpful to read customer reviews and seek recommendations from others who have used the shoes to gauge their slip-resistant qualities. However, it’s important to note that even with slip-resistant shoes, caution and adjustments in stride are still necessary when walking on slippery surfaces. Let us see further more points you should consider while checking shoes.

1. Non Slip Shoes Sole

Non Slip Shoes Sole

Non-slip shoes come with non-marking rubber soles that do not leave scuff marks on floors. Traction is vital in shoes. The sole of the shoe needs to have trodden in it to provide safety and avoid slipping. These treads can be in the form of brushes or deep grooves that grip the surface and help provide traction.

It may seem that there’s not much difference between a non-slip shoe and a standard one. However patterns insoles help to increase slip resistance. The nonslip sole & grooves promote good posture when walking and comfort during extended periods while maintaining adequate foot support. You will definitely experience this in non slip sneakers. Hence, you remain dry or calm at any given moment. .

2. Material

Shoes with rubber soles are more likely to be slip-resistant than shoes made from manufactured materials like mesh and synthetic leather. Make sure to check the sole. Look for any cracks or rips in the rubber that can cause slippage and falls. Non slip work boots for women also follow the same principle.

material of non slip pull on work boots

3. Shoe Construction

non slip soles

Shoes with a good amount of boot tread patterns & stitching in the outsole are less likely to grip surfaces than shoes that have been stitched together by machines. The machine stitching on these non slip shoes is not as solid and sturdy as those sewn together.

It’s essential to check what kind of material was used for making non-slip shoes. Some may have a combination of rubber and hand made leather, which might help them provide good traction but decrease durability.

For instance Nike non slip shoes have a slip resistant shoes bottom. One of the important factors for making slip non shoes is the space of tread pattern. The smaller the pattern the better grip your work shoes will have.

This is why it becomes imperative what you need before buying non-slip shoes online or offline from a store. You can also use anti slip shoe grips which are compatible for some models of work boots.

4. Sales Person

ask sales person and ensure about the slip resistance feature of the slip on work boots

It’s always best to buy from a person who knows what they are talking about and what you need precisely. Some people may not know what good non-slip work shoes look like. So, it is essential to have someone accountable to help you find what you need. This shall ensure that you do not end up buying another slippery shoes.

5. Fitting

fitting of non slip high tops

Nonslip shoes come in many types. What fits one person might not suit another. So you should buy what is comfortable for your feet and what you can afford. Work shoes will be available in a wide range of colors, toe shapes like TPU toe , and styles. You can find what best fits your needs or what looks good on you.

6. Material with antimicrobial properties

non slip work boots smell indication

Material plays an important role in defining non-slip work shoes. Rubber has a chemical property that kills bacteria and prevents injuries such as athlete’s foot. Buying non-slip work shoes comes down to choosing the right material. It may not be very comfortable to be standing in non-slip rubber boots all day long in high heels.

However what matters is what you need to work in a hazardous environment. Unfortunately people tend to ignore this fact sometimes. You can enhance the traction of your work shoes by using various products. You might find it helpful to use a shoe grip spray or traction spray for shoes.

7. Outsole Slip Resistance Classification System

the slip on work boots must meet ASTM standards regarding slippery surfaces

At work, there can be a range of surfaces that require non-slip footwear. There are different types of slip-resistant shoes. This range helps people find what they need without guessing what works best for them. A group called ASTM International was responsible for designing these marks.

ASTM stands for American Society for Testing and Materials. This agency looks at what kind of slip-resistant or non skid shoes work best where. Non-slip soles can be rated from 1-5 based on what kind of surface they are best suited for. The higher the number, the better it is in terms of providing grip.

5 Ways To Make Shoes Non-Slip

Do your shoes keep slipping off? Want to prevent this but don’t know how? There are many ways to make shoes anti slip , all of which are simple and take only a few minutes. Here’s what you should do:

There are many different ways that shoes can become non-slip, but they all have just one basic principle: adhering to some material with high friction to the slippery bottom of your shoe. Whatever works best for you will depend on your personal preferences, what type of shoes you’re trying to fix, etc.

Even though in a response to Thomas Galassi, Director of Enforcement Programs OSHA website has discussed some scenarios involving the term non-skid which refers to non slip.

Final Words

These were some simple ways of identifying what kind of shoes one needs when shopping for a pair that helps them feel more comfortable, especially if they have to work in an environment with oily surfaces or liquids that might harm their feet.

To get the most out of your shoe-shopping experience, be sure to research what type will work for you. Working in an environment with wet floors is crucial. Still, non-slip shoes don’t solve all problems; For instance in extreme weather conditions you will need insulated slip on work boots. Concluding how to tell if shoes are non slip, consider buying some that have rubber soles . Some other materials like leather also provides traction while walking on various surfaces!

Founder of ShoesPundit

As a child, Joey's career spanned a wide range of fields. These include farms, ranches, warehouses, construction sites, etc. Wearing good work boots was essential on all those sites to avoid distractions. As a result of his experience, he can determine which work boots are most appropriate for a particular workplace. Following Joey's work boots, his colleagues and teammates also purchased work boots based on his advice. Therefore, his friends suggested that he start a blog so that he could also help others.