Welcome to EN’s Product Review series! Who doesn’t love shopping, especially when the object of your search is new gear for yourself or your horse? As an enthusiast of all products equine, I LOVE trying out new gear. Please join me as I narrate my personal journey of trying out all of the products featured. While I will make no recommendations, I hope you have fun reading about my many adventures of trying new products, and that hearing about my personal experiences helps you on your own quest for new gear. Go Shopping.
Sometimes, it’s just the little extra details that help makes the difference for me. I’m a super in-the-details kind of person, so I tend to zero in on the little things that are so minute that most people may just glance right over them. But not me. I find that the details are what really differentiate one thing from another.
In some cases, the details are what help push me to make my decision for me on what to bring home from a shopping trip. Not that they help make the decision entirely, but they certainly could provide a little nudge in a certain direction. Especially if that particular direction involves something that is color coordinating or sparkly!
There was one particular day out shopping that I remember; I was just out shopping for fun, and wasn’t looking for anything in particular, and I found myself in the shoe department. Now, as someone of height (it sounds better then just saying I’m ‘some tall chick’), I am always in want of a comfortable pair of flats. Always.
It’s not that I have something against wearing heels – I love to break them out, and finally am at the point in my life where I have the confidence to wear them without feeling awkward. Flats are just simply both practical and more comfortable for everyday wear. Plus, I hear horror stories about the foot problems that women develop after wearing heels every day for years on end (yikes!).
Anyway, I was just nosing around and keeping my eyes out for a comfortable pair of flats in a neutral tone, when I suddenly stopped. And what did mine eyes see, but a pair of cute black flats – sure, they weren’t my typical pair ballet flats, but something (way) cuter. For instead of just being a solid black, they were covered in different sized silver colored studs and little spikes.
If I could only use one word to describe them, it would probably be edgy (because that’s a little more politically correct then calling them completely bad-@#%). The shoes were just sitting there as though they were on display, but I couldn’t find any other pairs like them below on the shelf. Or even a box for the pair that was sitting there.
I scooped them up to check them out, and it just so happened they were my size (boo-yah!). I figured, who needs a box – I’ve found the only pair like this in the store, and they happen to be my size, will look cute with pretty much anything I wear them with. and they turned out to be on sale too. If that isn’t meant to be, I don’t know what is.
Anyway, the moral of the story here is that the shoes were something that I was already looking for, and they were comfortable when I tried them on and walked ‘round in them a bit. They already function wise made the cut in my book–but their super sassy look helped make the decision to bring them home That. Much. Easier.
Looking at jumping boots for my horse can be a very similar experience to shopping for flats – because if I’m planning to jump my horse on a certain day, he definitely is in want of leg protection. There are a countless number of options that are available. Different styles. Different impact protection materials. Different price points. It can be a little overwhelming.
One type of jumping boots that I’ve seen and heard a lot about are EquiFit boots – the brand offers a number of different models jumping boots. EquiFit boots aim to provide a fit that conforms to your horse’s legs, while eliminating pressure points and providing them with protection from impact.
And their many different style offerings come with a wide range of price points. With boots ranging from a budget friendly All Purpose T-Boot, to pair of your very own customized D-Teq boots (that involve an oh-so worth it spluge), the broad offering of boots from EquiFit help their brand to fit into a wider range of budgets.
When looking through the (many) different boot offerings from EquiFit, there was a certain pair that caught my eye. The D-Teq boots just seemed to be calling me from my computer screen – like that 20 minute sweater that you see, and then can’t get out of your mind after you leave the store. And then, true to the name, you find yourself going back to the store 20 minutes later to buy the darn sweater. Suffice to say I was very interested to have the opportunity to ride with a pair of the D-Teq Front boots.
Anyway, I digress – the D-Teq boots looked really sharp to me the first time that I saw a picture of them. The boots have the option of coming in a smooth shell in either solid Black or Brown–or in a Black-Ostrich that features an elegant looking contrast pattern. One of the other features that attracted me to the D-Teq is one that plays to one of my vanities: color. D-Teq boots are available in Black-Ostrich with an option of four different color binding options: Navy, Red, Green or Brown, all at the same price!
Of course, you’ll find it to be no surprise that I personally gravitated towards the Black-Ostrich with the red binding. Looks aside, the D-Teq have so much more to offer than fabulous colored binding. The outer shell of the boots is anatomically molded in order to provide a close fit, and maximize your horse’s freedom of movement. So that they can perform their best and stay comfortable.
The outer shell of the D-Teq boots is also just about unbreakable (you know, like that move with Bruce Willis and Samuel L from way back when). But in all seriousness, the outer shell is constructed from a rigid foam that is ultra strong, but still able to flex when needed. The front boots are secured by fastening three 1.25″ straps, which do help to eliminate pressure points, while providing a close fit.
The D-Teq boots also feature a liner system – the outer hard shell is home to a ImpacTeq liner that is removable and fully washable. The ImpacTeq liner are conceptually very cool. Meant to absorb extreme impact, they are made out an open-cell foam that feels soft and flexible…until it experiences impact. Upon impact, the ImpacTeq actually hardens to protect against the shock.
The ImpacTeq are also anti-microbial and breathable as well — they do feature a multi-dimensional air mesh layer. Which is just a fancy way of saying that they allow air to flow through the liner instead of getting trapped. Which promotes circulation…so that your horse’s legs can stay cooler.
So let’s recap: D-Teq boots look simply fabulous, while offering leg protection behind their oh-so pretty face. They include an option to upgrade to one of 4 colored bindings (at no additional charge). Feature a rigid outer shell that is practically unbreakable. Are anatomically molded to help with comfort and performance. And they feature ImpacTeq liners, which are highly breathable and harden on impact.
When I first pulled out the pair of D-Teq Front boots out of their box to take a look, I was struck by the combination of substance and quality that I felt. While the outer shell felt quite solid and substantial, I was still left with the impression that it has some flex and give to it when necessary. And when I pulled apart the ImpacTeq liner, I observed it’s soft and flexible feel, and the rebound effect that I felt when I pressed my finger against the material and then pulled it away.
The three closure straps feel like they have some (very) slight stretch to them — enough so that when I was outfitting Ripley in the D-Teq Front boots for the first time, that I appreciated the fact that they stretched just so for me to fasten them. There are two different hole options for fastening the straps, that allow for some adjustability. I also like the additional style that the EquiFit logos that are on the fastener tabs of the straps add to the overall look of the D-Teq boots.
I also found that I was at first a little surprised at just how fitted the D-Teq boots were. I felt as though the anatomically molded shell really did help the boots to have a (super) close fit against Ripley’s legs. Which I still felt good about since the ImpacTeq liner provides for the relief of pressure points, which means that I don’t have to worry about rubbing or chaffing.
Ripley felt as though he kept his range of motion and ability of move freely while wearing the D-Teq boots. When schooling him over jumps, I was glad to be able to be confident that the D-Teq boots were providing him with a high level of impact protection — from the rigid outer shell, to the soft & flexible feeling ImpacTeq (that hardens on contact) liner.
Even after I finished riding Ripley and would check his boots, I found that the D-Teq boots stay in place just so, without any sliding or slipping — thanks to the super close and custom-like fit provided by the anatomically molded shell and security of the fastening straps. I also found that his legs did not feel warm, even after his workouts — thank you air circulation!
The D-Teq boots are also easy to clean and care for. When cleaning the outer shell, clean by hand using a mild soap and water (I favor using Ivory soap or detergent, as I find it to be extremely gentle). And as for the ImpacTeq liners, simply remove them from the outer shell, toss them in the washing machine, and make sure to let their air dry while laying flat. It’s that simple.
EquiFit’s D-Teq Front boots have a retail price of $220.00 — you can find the more traditional looking Black and Brown colors here, or you can find the pairs that include four different colored binding options available here. The D-Teq Hind boots are also available to complete your horse’s leg protection, and they retail for $205.00 a pair – and you can find them here.
Go Superior Leg Protection (in Style). Go EquiFit. Go Eventing.