I know very little about snow boots because they aren’t a Winter wearing necessity in my neck of the woods. But for many who live through very snowy Winters, snow boots are an important part of the footwear capsule. So I asked our savvy forum members for snow boot recommendations and I’ve summarised their extremely helpful suggestions here.
Tips to get you started:
- Different types of snow boots are required in urban, suburban and rural settings. The deeper the snow, the more heavy duty the boot. And the easier it should be to slip on and off the foot because you really don’t want to fuss with complicated laces in the bitter cold.
- Some members noted that they wear different boots for dry snow, wet snow and when it’s actively snowing. So it’s not uncommon to have several pairs of snow boots to suit different conditions.
- You may need to size up half a size to allow for the thickness of extra warm socks.
- A thick and waterproof sole is essential because the cold comes up through the sole.
- Choose your shaft height carefully, especially when you’re petite. Taller shaft heights provide more leg coverage but can also restrict movement. It’s sometimes easier to walk in shorter snow boots with waterproof snow pants.
- Roomy toe boxes are essential because they’re warmer than snug toe boxes.
- Toe and foot warmers provide extra toasty insulation.
The styles here have been tried and tested, and come highly rated by the members of our forum who wear snow boots for a good part of Winter. I’ve organized the styles into brands for easy reference. Each style has multiple colour options so do check them all out. And check out the reviews on each website too.
L.L. Bean duck boots are extremely popular and backordered till April. WOW. Their sleeker appearance makes them the more fashionable option, which may be why they are the flavour of the season. The boots are lightweight, warm, streamlined, and probably best for urban snowy and slushy settings. My goodness, don’t they look lovely in white, which are the ones I would try if snow boots were on my shopping list. L.L Bean’s easy slip-on Storm Chasers are good for two to three inches of snow. Gaiters are excellent for very deep snow because they can be easier to walk in than snow boots with taller shafts.
Sorel snow boot styles were highly rated by most forum members because they are extremely warm, weatherproof and robust. Their accentuated arch support is great if that’s what you need. They can run a little wide, which can compromise the fit for low volume feet. They are heavy, and are apparently not suitable to high insteps. But if you find a pair of Sorels that work for your feet, you probably won’t be disappointed. Some of the styles look very fashionable.
Kamiks were also very highly rated for the coldest and snowiest of conditions because they are extra lightweight, waterproof, warm and affordable. They can run short in the toe box, so you might need to size up half a size.
Columbia snow boots weren’t quite as popular as Sorels or L.L. Bean duck boots, but those who have them were extremely pleased with their comfort level and warmth factor.
Timberlands are available in wide widths and work especially well for very high volume feet. They aren’t heavy duty enough for the heaviest of snowstorms, but are super with ski socks in light snow or ice. Exceptionally good grip and fantastically lightweight. They are also available in fun colours, and look quite fashionable. A fab option if you don’t want to wear a tall boot.
Bogs were mentioned less often, but were highly rated by some forum members. If they fit your foot and leg, they are excellent for snowy outdoor activities. They are probably too wide for narrow calves. They come in fun patterns and colours and are an easy slip-on style.
Uggs are particularly suited to high insteps and narrower calf widths. They also kept members with Raynaud’s phenomenon (reduced blood flow in response to cold) adequately warm, which I believe is quite an achievement. You might need to size up half a size because the toe boxes are short.
Teva is another brand that is apparently excellent for feet with Raynaud’s. The Jordanelles have interior lining that serves as slippers. So you can leave the snowy outer layer of the boot by the door, and walk in the inners at home.
Pajar was a relatively new brand of snow boot for our forum members. The boots are less supportive than others, but a lot more streamlined in appearance, and quite lightweight. Some of the styles remind me of duck boots. They’re definitely worth a look.
La Canadienne, Blondo, Aquatalia and Rieker
La Canadienne, Blondo, Aquatalia and Rieker boots are much dressier and more fashionable. While they do keep your feet dry in mild snow, they aren’t warm enough for extremely cold weather and deeper snow. They are brilliant for Seattle, where it’s very wet and the snow is generally light and shallow.
Do read the forum thread for extra details about the best brands and styles of snow boots, and many thanks to our members for generously providing the information. I’ve learned a lot, and now have a much better idea about how to go about purchasing the best snow boots. Feel free to ask questions and to add your recommendations to the list.