JoyceB, that's a great idea about switching shoes. I guess back in the day some people had special driving loafers, no?

And re: Ugg boots, do you mean the classic ones? I do have a pair gifted to me by my mom. I had always been one of those who refused to wear those sleepwear-looking boots in public, till I tried it on and it was like walking on clouds. Warm clouds. They do keep my feet warm, but my main issue is how the soles are slippery. One of my falls on ice last winter was when I was wearing these boots. So I save them for dry cold days (we can have many of those in MN--i.e. winters with little snow--but I don't think that will be the case this year...)

I will check out the LL.Beans too.

And yes, Bethster, aren't those Bos and Co pretty??? They have them in different colors too, and lots of other gorgeous kinds.

Highly recommend silk liner socks underneath a thick pair of wool socks. A lot of synthetic liner socks irritate my feet (probably the antimicrobial treatments some companies use to make them stink less), but silk is great, and they are smooth, so easy to pull another pair of socks over them.

For merino socks, my favourite brands are Darn Tough, Bridgedale, and Fox River. The ones designed for running, cycling, etc are not nearly as itchy as old fashioned "ragg wool" socks. (the oatmeal coloured ones). Smartwool socks are cute, but I find they don't last as long as other comparable brands.

I'm surprised no one has mentioned like neoprene boots Muck Boots or Bogs. Both offer a winter version that's rated to -40 F. They are my most comfortable warm boots, though not as fashionable as a Sorel or similar. Lighter weight and more flexible, I find for walking long distances or driving, they're much more comfortable than a classic pac boot. Also, if you're in a climate where the snow is often wet/melting/slushy, they are fully waterproof, which I find invaluable. Oh, and mud hoses right off.

I have Raynauds, and I wear Bos Co. boots in the winter. They are water resistant and if you buy fleece lined, they are warm. I have tried every other brand mentioned here. The absolute warmest boots for me were some from The North Face, another pair from LL Bean and the Bos Co boots. I stay away from anything that has rubber shoes. For whatever reason my feet feel colder in that style, maybe because moisture cannot evaporate? Make sure there is lots of wiggle room for toes. The North face and the LL Bean boots had sock liner layers that were insulated with synthetic down. I wear very thin silk or merino wool socks or merino wool tights. I love the foot warmer and hand warmer inserts.

La Pedestrienne, interesting about the Bogs and Mucks. I saw them on websites as I explored the options suggested here, and wondered why they hadn't been brought up (just thought maybe they weren't as good). I actually like their neoprene streamlined look! I also saw some people wearing Bogs in Montreal (on the same day when my toes froze) and made a mental note to look them up...

Will add silk socks to my list of socks to try!

Staysfit, good to know about Bos and Co! Do you have a favorite model? And where do you buy them? I'm looking at Amazon and some reviews suggest that at least some may be knock-offs because of poor quality. (The wild world of Amazon...)

PS. Also good to know about the rubber bottoms. I never tried those and can't always tell if they are lined and/or warm.

I second LaPed’s silk liner recommendation. I use these from REI.

Thanks for the link, karen13!

So many warm boot brands I didn’t know about! Warmth ratings of different brands sound confusing—how do you know that “extreme” or whatever is the same from one to the next if you can’t even rely on their promises of “temps down to x” as someone mentioned? I’d probably look at the website of an outfitter like REI that sells several of these brands and use their comparison in making my selection, even if I bought elsewhere.

Some people might not need to wear boots for warmth, or even need to wear a jacket. If that isn’t you, don’t fret it. Cold is a serious issue and you’ve got to do what your body needs for you to stay warm.

FashIntern, that's a great idea to use the REI website for comparison shopping! I usually love having choices in everything, but with the boots it's been overwhelming...