Timberland Pro Helix Work Boot Review – And a Farewell to my Dr Martens

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Timberland Pro Helix Work BootTimberland recently sent me a pair of their 6″ Pro Helix Waterproof boots to review. I approached this review opportunity with both great hope and great sadness. I’ll explain the sadness shortly. The hope part involved optimism that I might actually have work footwear that I wasn’t tempted to hide with those blue work shoe covers you see in hospitals and clean rooms. Yes, my old work shoes had seen a lot of abuse over the years. They were no longer acceptable for nights on the town.

dr martens work shoes
In with the new Pro Helix, out with the old Dr Martens

The sadness comes from finally retiring the pair of Doc Martens I bought roughly 15 years ago (seen above). Before I dive into my thoughts on the Timberland Pro Helix work boot, come with me on a brief retrospective and a frightening glimpse into frugality (not something I’m always known for). Circa 1996, I was on a rare shopping trip to an unnamed discount store. I stumbled across a sweet pair of Dr Martens. They weren’t boots but had a beefy tread and tough looking black leather. The only problem was they were about half a size too small. “Oh well,” I thought, “for $40 how can I go wrong?”

The Dr. Martens started off as my occasional casual wear and after a few years made their way into “work shoe” status. Over the years they’ve been through weddings, tactical firearms training, painting projects, trips to the far reaches of our crawl space, patrolling the mean streets of San Diego, and ultimately a paint stripping project that left them caked in paint stripper and paint. And, as a little disclaimer on the Dr. Martens. Their UK factory ceased production in 2003, with production moving to China and Thailand. I’m not sure how their non-UK models have held up, but I can definitely say their original UK-manufactured shoes stand the test of time and can take a lot of abuse. They absolutely rocked! In fact, if they weren’t still too small for me, I’d be tempted to rehab them and wear them another fifteen years. All good things must come to an end though, and reviewing the Timberland Pro Helix work boot seemed like a fitting time for me to say goodbye to my faithful Dr. Martens. OK, so back to the Timberland Pro Helix Work Boot.

Timberland Pro Helix Spec’s

timberland tread
No lack of grip with this technical tread design
  • Slip, Oil and Abrasion Resistant Sole keeps you on your feet
  • Anti-Fatigue Technology designed to absorb shock and keep your feet happy
  • Waterproof Membrane & Leather gives two layers of H2O defense
  • Anti-Microbial keeps micro-critters at bay and helps prevent the dreaded “work boot” smell
  • Titan Safety Toe provides a roomy, safe home for your toes, free from randomly being crushed
  • Electrical Hazard Protection meets ANSI Z41PT99 and ASTM F2412-05/F2413-05 (and probably some other letters and numbers too)

Here’s quick rundown of the features in a video from Timberland:

pro helix lace close up
Triple-stitched and ready for action

You can also check out the Timberland PRO’s StayOnYourFeet.com website, which is chock full of info on the Timberland PRO® Helix series. You can even search for sector-specific jobs and participate in a contest to enter to win boots. The site is great for wading through options like safety toe vs composite toe vs soft toe. Since there isn’t just one Pro Helix configuration, it’s useful to scope out the spec’s and what might work best for you online first.

30 Day Comfort Guarantee
Timerland puts their money where their mouth is with their 30-Day Comfort Guarantee.

If during the first 30 days following your purchase you believe your Timberland Pro series footwear with the Power-Fit comfort system is not more comfortable than ether brands you have worn, return them and Timberland will refund the purchase price of the footwear to you, no questions asked, provided you still have your dated receipt of purchase.

You have to follow a few steps to get the refund, but they’re pretty innocuous and mainly involved keeping your receipt, calling Timberland within the 30 days and shipping everything to the address you provide. I haven’t noticed too many money back comfort guarantees when it comes to footwear.

timberland pro helix heelI found the Timberland Pro Helix work boots to be very comfy. My feet tend to be finicky when it comes to footwear and boots in particular (despite my little decade-plus foot binding experiment in the Dr. Martens). I found the Timberland Pro Helix to be very comfortable. The cushioned sole in particular felt just right; not so soft that they lacked support, and not so rigid that they were uncomfortable. In terms of bottom-of-the-foot comfort, I think the Pro-Helix live up to their hype.


timberland ladder lock tread
Timberland's Ladder Lock tread in action

My initial wear was during a summer visit to rural Idaho (is that redundant)? The Timberlands were subjected to some pretty rugged turf. Rocks, scrub brush, fallen trees, a small creek and plenty of dirt were all no match for the Pro Helix. I felt sure-footed with the oil and slip resistant sole. The Pro Helix work boot also has a section of Ladder Lock tread designed to provide good grip on ladder rungs, handy if you do much work at altitude.

All in all, I found the Timberland Pro Helix work boot to be well put together, comfortable, and, at least so far, quite durable. Time will tell if they live up to the mythic longevity my UK Dr. Martens though! You can find several variations of the Timberland Pro Helix Work Boot on Amazon for between $100 and $165.

Anyone else have some favorite footwear they’d like to recommend? If so, please post it in the comments below.

Photo of author

About Marc Lyman

Marc grew up under a brave single mom who "encouraged" home improvement on the family home. Early toddler gifts included a tool set, and even a cordless Bosch drill when cordless drills first came out. In grade school (give or take a few years), Marc's mom said, "We need to cut down some trees. . . . here's a chainsaw." A father figure also involved Marc in many home improvement projects, including a summer of home remodeling in Palo Alto, CA. Toss in some Obsessive Compulsive personality traits researching everything home improvement related. The end result: a genetically pre-disposed, socially sculpted home improvement machine! For his complete profile, please visit our About page. Really, it's worth it.

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3 thoughts on “Timberland Pro Helix Work Boot Review – And a Farewell to my Dr Martens”

  1. Sadly I’m kind of in the same Dr. Marten camp as you are. I found a pair of only slightly worn 8″ steel toe Docs at a thrift store for, get this, $6. That was probably 5 years ago but they’ve already been through the wringer and the treads are getting pretty slick. I’m looking into some US made boots with steel toes I’ll let you know what I find.

    • Wow, $6 for a pair of Doc Martens is a serious score! Thanks for keeping us posted on your boot search. We’ll be reviewing some Keen steel toe utility boots in the coming months, so stay tuned on that too.


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