Hanwag mountain and trekking footwear is made of a wide range of different materials. We select each of them carefully and apply them for a specific purpose. Choosing the right lining in your shoe means greater comfort and having the best possible wear climate for your feet. We make our linings from leather GORE-TEX® or special fabrics – they all have different characteristics.
At Hanwag, we’re interested in the quality and structure of the materials we use, in how they perform, right down to the smallest detail. This applies to sourcing, product development and production. Many of our customers ask us which is the best lining material: Leather, GORE-TEX® or fabric? So, which is it then? We always start from the fact that when you are hiking in the mountains, your feet are going to sweat, creating moisture in your shoes. It’s important to transport this moisture away as quickly as possible. Why? Because moisture means blisters. Most people don’t know that it’s moisture from sweat, rain, puddles etc. that causes blisters. There are two main reasons. First, wet skin is softer and more vulnerable. Second, wet socks cause more friction and rubbing. Moisture-wicking socks and liner socks can help, but ultimately the best way to ensure good comfort and keep your feet dry is to wear shoes that have a breathable lining. In addition, the longer your trip – especially if it’s a multi-day trip – the more important it is that your shoes are waterproof.
Finally, the combination of upper fabric and inner lining plays an important role. For example, robust 2.4 mm to 2.6 mm impregnated nubuck, such as we use on our TATRAs, offers a good level of waterproofing. Teaming it with a leather lining, which is more breathable, provides greater comfort.
GORE-TEX® linings are composed of several layers, including a waterproof and breathable membrane. They keep your feet reliably dry in rain, snow and ice. GORE-TEX® is very breathable and allows perspiration to escape from inside your shoes. However, it still gets outperformed in certain respects by a natural material: leather.
Leather lining is pleasant to wear due to its ability to quickly absorb moisture. Leather lining also moulds better to fit the shape of your foot. Leather might not be 100% waterproof, however, if you look after the outer material (the upper), it will offer good weather protection. If you are planning a multi-day trip, it’s worth noting that leather-lined boots and shoes take longer to dry.
G-LOFT® FIT (Foot Insulation Technology) is a non-woven synthetic fibre insulation material. G-LOFT® is robust, very breathable and has characteristics similar to natural down – it’s lightweight and provides excellent insulation. In addition, it’s insensitive to moisture. We use G-LOFT® for insulation in our winter collection and combine it with selected upper materials and a waterproof, breathable GORE-TEX® lining.
HANWAG’s EcoShell membrane is a waterproof, breathable, PFC-free solution that’s functional and sustainable in equal measure. And, of course, it meets all our exacting demands on quality and fit. HANWAG’s EcoShell footwear, indicated by the ES in the name, contains no fluorochemicals.
Chrome-free leather lining has the same specifications as standard leather. It might not be 100% waterproof, but if you look after it well, it will offer good weather protection. In addition, it has excellent moisture absorption properties. Chrome-free leather is tanned without using chromium salts. It contains no (chromium-based) allergens and is especially skin-friendly. Suitable for allergy sufferers. We also use it as an upper leather.