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Workwear on a Budget: WWD’s essentials guide

Posted on June 29 2019

Workwear on a Budget: WWD’s essentials guide

Investing in quality work clothing may seem like the biggest paradox. Why would I want to put the money I earn from working, back into working? However, it’s no hidden truth that blue-collar workers will spend the majority of their time in these clothes, which means it’s essential for them to be functional, comfortable, and durable. As leading manufacturers of workwear, Portwest understand how large the workwear market is, and the challenge associated with selecting the ‘right’ product to invest in. Is the quality up to standard? Is this necessary? Am I being overcharged? These are only some of the questions, which undoubtedly pass through the minds of both experienced workers, and beginners. We have therefore comprised a handy guide of how to go about selecting the ‘essentials’, which continue to provide high-quality.

Although the specifics of workwear differ from profession to profession, most employers will require similar items. Employers will typically ask employees to provide a pair of protective steel-cap boots, work pants, and work shirt at minimum. However, an overall may be your company’s regulation uniform, and Hi-Vis may be compulsory, depending on your working environment. It may also be advisable that employees invest in some form of outer garment. Additionally, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires, that employers must pay for all Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). However, you may wish to purchase your own PPE, and Portwest offers equipment which has been rigorously tested to meet Health and Safety standards.

  1. Work boots

The Portwest FW10 Steelite Protector Boot is an industry bestseller and excellent value for money. The simple black design means this safety boot is versatile and suitable for a multitude of working environments. Conforming to the ASTM F2413-11 standards, this work boot features a protective steel toecap and puncture resistant steel midsole. These boots are an ideal first purchase for young workers, or those on a budget. Available in US 3-18.

Portwest Steelite Protector Boot FW10

Portwest are proud stockists of both steel and composite toe safety footwear at affordable prices, guaranteed to perform in any condition. Go to for our full range.

  1. Work Shirt

Many professions require flame-resistant clothing, and Portwest believe that workers should be protected head to toe. The Bizflame FR Crew Neck and Bizflame FR Henley are both made from breathable and moisture wicking fabric, ensuring a comfort and protection. These safety shirts are a wise investment for those who require fire protection in their work. Both conform to the ASTM F1959/F1959M-12 standard and available in sizes S-6XL.

 Portwest Bizflame Henley Neck T-Shirt FR02 Portwest Bizflame Crew Neck T-Shirt FR01

Portwest offers a variety of value work shirts from our Hi-Vis range, Bizflame Range, and Kingsmill range in accordance to your requirements. Head to for the full range and find your ideal work shirt.


  1. Work pants

If you’re unsure about what type of work pant to purchase, Portwest offers the Industrial Work Pants, which provide premium quality, for exceptional value. A versatile and durable garment made from Kingsmill fabric, guaranteeing exceptional durability. It’s especially easy to become caught up in the specifics of work pants, and whether you really need all that fancy stuff. If you don’t require a specialist product, keep it simple. Despite their simplicity, these safety pants have a 50+ UPF rating to block 98% of UV rays, ensuring vital protection.


Portwest Cargo Pants C701

Additionally, Portwest offers a huge range of value work pants for your professional needs. Head to / Portwest website to discover our Hi-Vis, USA Workwear, Painter’s, Bizweld, and Rainwear ranges.


  1. High-Visibility Clothing

Portwest prides itself in its extensive Hi-Vis range. Classed as PPE, Hi-Vis clothing protects the wearer by increasing their visibility. Your employer may provide you with some Hi-Vis garments, but here at Portwest we offer a multitude of safety wear for maximum protection. We are the best choice for High-Visibility in the USA, ensuring compliance with the latest ANSI/ISEA 107 standard.

Whatever your profession, Portwest guarantees they have the answer to your needs. We are the best choice for quality and value, and to prove it; here are just some of our bestsellers. For more information and to discover our full dynamic range, make your way to  

Portwest US768 Traffic JacketPortwest US365 Bomber Jacket

 US768 – Traffic Jacket                                   US365 – Bomber  

  1. Overalls

Overalls provide complete full body protection for the wearer. In many cases, coveralls are essential when there are significant hazards related to fire, explosions, and chemical spills. However, if your options are open, you may choose to wear overalls as a more comfortable and practical alternative to pants and a shirt.

If you require flame-resistance, the Bizweld FR Coverall is our best value product, offering dual hazard protection against radiant, convective, contact heat, and molten metal splashes. This overall is also extremely practical, with 8 pockets in total for ample storage. Voted No.1 favorite coverall in the USA Welding Industry, this safety garment combines affordability, practicality, and exceptional protection. Our prices do not compromise the quality of our products. Conforms to the ASTM F1506-10a and ASTM F1959 standards. Head to the Portwest website / catalogue for more information and to view our full Bizflame / Bizweld ranges, as well as our simple and affordable cotton overalls.  

 Portwest Bizweld Coverall UBIZ1

  1. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

PPE is required to be worn by employees to protect against health and safety risks at work. Portwest stocks a number of PPE including; safety helmets, gloves, eye-protection, ear-protection, Hi-Vis clothing, safety footwear and safety harnesses. PPE is often heavy, and uncomfortable to wear, but as industry specialists, Portwest have carefully designed our PPE to ensure maximum comfort for the wearer. Here are our PPE essentials. Head to for more information and our full range.

 Portwest Arrow Safety Helmet PS50     Portwest PW40 - Classic Ear Protectors

PS50 – Arrow Safety Helmet                             PW40 – Classic Ear Protector

  1. Outerwear

Finally, we advise that investing in some form of outer garment is essential. If you work outside, the colder months can prove extremely difficult to work in, reducing motivation, work ethic, and increasing your chances of catching a cold! As an all-rounder, we think that purchasing a rain jacket that will keep you dry and comfortable is essential. For extra warmth, layer thermals and a sweatshirt underneath.

The Classic Rain Jacket is Portwest’s bestselling solution to affordable and practical rainwear. The welded seams and inner elasticated cuffs prevent extra water penetration, keeping the wearer completely dry. Additionally, the vented back yoke and eyelets provide this rain gear with added breathability, and excellent comfort for the wearer. Available in a variety of stand-out colors, from sizes S-XL. Visit the Portwest website / catalogue for more details and to check out all the outerwear we have to offer.

 Portwest US 440 Classic Rain Jacket

However, if you are primarily interested in waterproof wear, Portwest can cater to your needs. Head to the to view our huge range of specialist Rainwear including; the Sealtex, Technik, Ripstop, and Iona collections.