Dr. Martens for Life: Forever Boots



  • I've owned a pair of the matte black boots since late 2009 and worn them as my workhorse shoe nearly every day since then. No quality issues, and they never took even the slightest breaking in. The leather is durable but so soft it's decadent.

    I just bought a pair of the Oxblood Smooth last month, just because they're beautiful. (The black are still my workhorse shoe.) The Smooth finish is stiffer and they're taking some breaking in to ease up on my ankle and the crown of my foot. Everything is still solid quality, though.

    I'm really glad I bought when I did, as I looked today and discovered they've discontinued the Oxblood! You can still get the hard glossy Smooth finish in black, though, if that's your thing.

    I'm not doubting anyone else's experience, but both my pairs have been spectacular and customer service has been very responsive.
  • Dr. Martens was my first step into the world of better shoes. The only decent shoes I had right out of high school was issued duty boots. You just can't wear military boots everywhere.

    Being a young kid, and not knowing any better, I went for years blowing good money on mall shoes and department store shoes with fancy names. I threw away a lot of good money on cheap junk. At that age, I bought shoes because I liked the way they looked. If i tried them on, and they didn't feel good, I always thought that you just had to break them in.

    Dr. Martens were the first civilian shoe I ever owned that did not need to be broken in. Comfortable right out of the box. A real eye opener. From that point on, I started looking for things like a repairable Good-Year welt, polish-able leather, and comfort.

    Pay attention guys. Good shoes are expensive. Dr. Martens are only at the entry level end of a better shoe. As far as I'm concerned, the best Dr. Martens are the ones made in England. But the For Life line gives you the most bang for your buck. They are well made, and you can't get anything better than a replace and repair forever warranty.

    Welcome to comfortable, well built shoes. Now get ready to invest in Wolverine 1000 Mile Boots, Red Wing Iron Ranger, Alden Indy, Allen Edmonds Dalton, West coast Shoe Company, Whites Boots, and more shoes than you can possibly wear out.
  • For what it's worth, I've been wearing my For Life oxfords more or less nonstop since September of 2010 and they've been superb. The sole is a bit worn around the heel but the leather is soft and comfortable, and the footbed still has as much spring as it did out of the box. I expect that it will be a few years before I will send them back to the factory for refurbishment.
  • I just recently picked up a pair of Doc Martens For Life. I was originally going in for their newer adaptations, such as the felicity which has a more feminine look, but changed my mind when I took a look at the For Life series. I'm fed up with boots that fall apart after a few months and this seemed like the best way to thwart off the problem.

    As some comments implied, the Oxblood were discontinued due to a problem with the finish peeling off, but I was stoked to see that they had a reworked oxblood to offer. These are a matte soft finish, but not rough like the black matte that is also offered. Be warned! These are not the usual deep oxblood that we think of when we think of Docs, it's more maroon or magenta. They are not 'girly' though, this shade of oxblood looks great with black and blends better with an outfit. Whereas the traditional Oxblood is known for standing out, this pair is more sophisticated and subtle in it's uniqueness.

    I'm looking forward to destroying these suckers! (If I can)
  • not sure what took me so long, but I finally broke down and got the For Life 1461's, all black, today....since the age of 16, now 34, I have owned nothing but Dr. Martens...from boots to shoes to slip ons, there has never been another footwear that has compared.....had a black pair of steel toe's for almost 10 years...have had two pair of wing tips over the last 10 years....my favorite were a discontinued style that I wore through my last years of college working in bars and restaurants (not sure of their name)....these are the best restaurant shoe in the business....none better, I promise...it does seem that the quality has been diminishing over the last 10 years, but only with certain uppers and soles....if you stick with the original soles and normal straight-line style uppers and the classics, the quality is certainly there...most recently before these For Life's, I had a really nice pair but the sole wore in only 8 months, disappointing, but they are SOOOO comfortable, wish I could just re sole, but that would cost as much as just getting a new pair...so For Life it is!!! sweet
  • Do the for life boots have the original style insole or is that removable one?
  • BuddyJBuddyJ Dept. of Propaganda OKC Icrontian
  • So I'm about to pull the trigger, for life worth the price? Or spend the extra and get some solovairs or vintage docs? Thanks buddyj...
  • BuddyJBuddyJ Dept. of Propaganda OKC Icrontian
    Really depends Glenn. For me, it's worth the price to get the For Lifes because the warranty covers wearing the sole out, which is something I've done with Docs in the past (legit Made in the UK ones). That's the determining factor in my book. Solovairs would be my second choice. Good luck with whatever you decide on!
  • ardichokeardichoke Icrontian
    edited January 2013
    I bought a pair of Doc Marten's this spring. I can't find the exact style on their website, but they are almost identical to the Reed low top boots. My only complaint so far has been that one of the laces broke pretty quickly and I can't find a suitable replacement (boot laces of the appropriate length for 3 eyelet boots are rare it seems). Otherwise, probably the best pair of shoes I've ever purchased. I wear them pretty much every day, which is usually a death sentence for my shoes. They show no sign of wear so far, except a few scuffs.
  • Does anyone know the diffrence between the quilon leather vs the hardlife leather??
  • BuddyJBuddyJ Dept. of Propaganda OKC Icrontian
    Quilon leather is incredibly stiff, takes a long time to break in, and has more of a sheen to it. The hardlife leather is very soft so it's easy to break in. It has a more matte look to it, similar to what Solovair calls the "greasy" finish.
  • Thanks buddyj, you have been extremely helpful! Oneast question! :-)

    Does the hardlife leather get lose and lose its shape? I had some wolvering workboots that the leather was so wobbly the ankle part would just flop down, I had to last them all the way up!
  • Sorry I was typing very fast on my iphone (loose) is what I meant! I'm assuming the hardlife leather is good quality? I just love the leather on my 2000 Oxford docs! Lol
  • BuddyJBuddyJ Dept. of Propaganda OKC Icrontian
    The leather on my boots is stiff enough to stand up without flopping down. I lace mine up to the 6th hole. I've had mine almost 3 years, and they still retain their shape like in this photo:

  • Mine are on the way! Can't wait! I would have loved to buy the MIE boot but guaranteed for life is hard to pass up. The hardlife leather sounds like its good quality with it being full grain.

    Thank you for all your help!
  • BuddyJBuddyJ Dept. of Propaganda OKC Icrontian
    Congrats! Hope they work well for you.
  • hey buddyj, do you think the foot bed will soften up? Did you mean in your review that the footbed was not the same as the vintage line? I'm worried now.. lol I wish they had my size in vintage, but that really forced my hand! lol
  • BuddyJBuddyJ Dept. of Propaganda OKC Icrontian
    Don't be worried. The footbed on these is made to be more durable but still comfortable. The only reason I used insoles in my review is because I have very narrow feet (officially an 11.5 A) and it helps them fit me better. I bet you'll love the For Lifes.
  • I hope so, but from what I'm reading here, the smooth black starts losing its finish! lol i hope that they have things worked out by now! lol I wish they had the vintage my size!

    We need to have a doc marten fan club! lol my love for these shoes has been re borne! I've been searching the net for weeks now!
  • Hey, I got a quick question, even though mine come in tomorrow. They say the for life boots offer a "generous fit" I us a UK9 which is on the boarder of being to big, and UK8 is very cramped... What is your impression of the overall size?
  • midgamidga "There's so much hot dog in Rome" ~digi (> ^.(> O_o)> Icrontian
    I think I know what I'm getting my dad for xmas now.
  • Quick update, the insole is the flimsy, cheap removable one.. Unlike the old doc marten sown in leather insole. I did like the leather, but I'll go England made for now on... Solovair it is!
  • BuddyJBuddyJ Dept. of Propaganda OKC Icrontian
    Hmm. They've changed the insole then. I looked yesterday at my pair of Forevers and they have the sown in insole. :/
  • mertesnmertesn I am Bobby Miller Yukon, OK Icrontian
    BuddyJ said:

    Hmm. They've changed the insole then. I looked yesterday at my pair of Forevers and they have the sown in insole. :/

    I have a pair on order. When they arrive we can take a look at them side-by-side.
  • I'm waiting on the solovair boots, I'll make a YouTube video. I will admit the forever boots with smooth black were very nice, and great quality. The insole thing is really why I bought the boots though, as no other shoe or boot is made like that. Sure it's really stuff at first, but once it molds to your foot, it's like wearing house slippers wherever you go! lol
  • I canceled the Solovair order, I wasn't to happy with the customer service. I was messing around on the doc marten site and by chance seen that they had vintage 1460 boots in 9UK, which was rare since they haven't had any in at least 2 months! I placed the order and will post a comparison on YouTube soon. :-) doc marten customer service has really blown me away, I absolutely feel good buying doc marten and will continue buying from DM. Matt at solovair likes his boots more than me, and would much rather keep them.
  • mertesnmertesn I am Bobby Miller Yukon, OK Icrontian
    This is my first EVER pair of Dr. Martens.

    I had planned on purchasing some way back when @BuddyJ first posted his review. Back then the main site had Oxblood as a color option, which looked amazing. Unfortunately when I finally got around to ordering, they had disappeared from the main site so I abandoned those plans since it was really the only color I had wanted. Fast forward to two weeks ago and the thread bump happened. Decided to poke around and see if maybe things had changed. The main site still didn't show the Oxblood color, but the US store site had them in stock.

    My first pair arrived last week. I normally wear a size US8.5 or 9 depending on the shoe. UK sizes only correspond to full US sizes, so to be safe I ordered a UK 8 (US9). They were a bit on the big side, so I set up a return and ordered size UK7. Those arrived yesterday and fit perfectly.

    Oh. Man. These boots are comfortable. The first hour they were a little tight around the top of my foot (at the base of the tongue), but they relaxed rather quickly. Other than that it's been awesome from the start.

    The original insoles that came with the boots look a little cheap, but they're comfortable enough right now. Of course this is the first week of use, so that may or may not last. I ordered other insoles just in case though - I'll probably swap them in next weekend.
    [Deleted User]
  • The vintage docs have leather insoles that mold to your feet in a week or two, and then it's like a foot massage every time you take a step! I did like the "for life boots" they were great quality! However the leather insole is what was searching after!
  • I just got my vintage boots....can tell you this very worth the extra $20! You can check out pics on flikr, my name is Thremix. However between the two, go with the vintage, the quality is amazing, the leather is paper thin on the for life boot compared to the vintage!
Sign In or Register to comment.