When you think about the best winter boots, what comes to mind? Warmth? Waterproof? Traction?
The best winter footwear is all of that and more.
Let’s talk about how to decide which winter boots best meet your needs.
- 1 Buyer’s guide to the best winter boots
- 2 Best Winter Boots in 2023
- 2.1 Helly Hansen Mens Garibaldi V3 Winter Boot
- 2.2 Kamik Men’s Nation Plus Boot
- 2.3 Baffin Men’s Control Max Insulated Boot
- 2.4 Merrell Men’s Coldpack Ice+ 8″ Zip Polar Waterproof Snow Boot
- 2.5 UGG Women’s Adirondack Boot Iii
- 2.6 KEEN Women’s Revel 4 Mid Height Polar Snow Boot
- 2.7 Columbia Women’s Ice Maiden II Snow Boot
- 2.8 SOREL Women’s Out ‘N About III Conquest Waterproof Boot
- 3 Conclusion
Buyer’s guide to the best winter boots
For example, what is a good boot for walking in the snow? The answer partly depends on how deep the snow is.
If you’re only dealing with a light dusting of snow now and then, ankle-high boots would be fine as long as your legs don’t get cold.
However, if you’ll be breaking a trail through a foot of snow, you’ll definitely need taller boots.
Tall boots are also nice for rainy conditions since most are made for you to tuck your pants inside them.
But tall boots might not be comfortable for people with big calves or wide feet as they are harder to pull on and take off (unless they lace up).
But it’s not just the height of the boot that matters.
Waterproof or water-resistant
Most winter boots are labeled as waterproof, but some are better at keeping water out than others. For instance, if they have leather uppers, you may have to treat them with Nikwax or another type of water-repellent substance.
Some have a waterproof liner like Gore-Tex to keep your feet dry inside but the exterior may still soak up water.
Keep in mind that truly waterproof boots may be less breathable and you may end up with wet feet from sweating. (That’s when wool socks come in handy as they retain heat when damp).
Tread for traction on rain, ice, and snow
There’s not a lot you can do about walking on ice unless you have spikes. But the best winter boots have non-slip soles for wet and snowy surfaces.
Work boots and hiking boots tend to have deeper tread with lugs for rough terrain. Urban winter footwear has less tread but may have a soft rubber sole that grips slick surfaces well.
There’s no standardized system for manufacturers to follow when it comes to temperature ratings. Each brand comes up with its own test. That’s why it’s hard to know whether any particular pair of winter boots will keep you toasty based on the numbers alone.
Instead, look at the construction of the boot. What type of insulation does it have? Technical winter boots will have a fill rating and the higher the number, the warmer they are.
Also, does the lining wick away moisture? It doesn’t matter how insulated the boots are if your feet are soaked with sweat.
The best winter boots will fit your feet (and your legs, if the boots are tall) so that they don’t slip up and down on your heel or pinch your toes. They should accommodate winter socks, too.
Should you buy winter boots in a larger size? If you’re in between sizes, we recommend sizing up. If you wear very thick socks or extra pairs of socks, also go up a size, or at least a half size.
If you plan to use custom orthotics or a different type of insole, you may also need to go up a size.
Take a look at the best winter boots for hiking, running errands, working outdoors, and more below:
|The best winter boots||Highlights|
|Helly Hansen Mens Garibaldi V3 Winter Boot||
|Kamik Men's Nation Plus Boot||
|Baffin Men's Control Max Insulated Boot||
|Merrell Men's Coldpack Ice+ Snow Boot||
|UGG Women's Adirondack Boot Iii||
|KEEN Women's Revel 4 Mid Height Polar Snow Boot||
|Columbia Women's Ice Maiden II Snow Boot||
|SOREL Women's Out 'N About III Conquest Waterproof Boot||
Best Winter Boots in 2023
Helly Hansen Mens Garibaldi V3 Winter Boot
Winter boots don’t have to look clunky or feel bulky to be warm and comfortable. In fact, the best winter shoes for men are those that can be worn all day.
Check out these stylish winter boots for guys. They resemble hiking boots and can be worn on the trails as well as around town. The tread has a good grip on muddy paths and icy streets. Moreover, they have sealed seams and a rubberized rand to make them waterproof.
They are light for this level of insulation, comfortable, and very warm. They feature Primaloft with a faux fur liner and a leather exterior. Plus, they come in various colors.
- Stylish winter boots that resemble hiking boots
- Perfect for urban wear and hiking on less strenuous trails
- Primaloft insulation with a faux fur lining and leather exterior
- Grippy outsole
- Leather exterior will need a water-repellent treatment to stay looking like new
Kamik Men’s Nation Plus Boot
Have you been hankering after Sorel winter boots but don’t have the budget for them? Then try these affordable winter boots that are similar in style.
They feature 200 grams of Thinsulate insulation which is good for snowy weather (but not frigid conditions). The manufacturer says they are ideal for “cool conditions or high activity levels”.
Then, the solid rubber bottoms are waterproof with sealed seams. The suede upper is also waterproof. However, these boots lace up. If you don’t position the tongue properly and fasten the laces enough, water or snow may enter. You may find yourself having to pull out the liner and let it dry.
What’s interesting is that the soles have more traction than the classic Sorel Pac boot. Of course, these are bulky snow boots that look just as functional as they are.
- 200 gr Thinsulate lining for warmth in typical winter conditions
- Sealed seams, waterproof upper, and rubber lower
- Good traction
- Removable liner
- Be careful to position the tongue and lace tightly to avoid water entering
Baffin Men’s Control Max Insulated Boot
If you’d like a pair of the best men’s winter boots for extreme cold, these were tested in very low temperatures down to – 94°F (otherwise known as Antarctic conditions). What’s impressive is that they only weigh around 3 and a half pounds.
If you did a teardown of the boots, you’d first notice the waterproof leather exterior and Arctic rubber sole with lugs. This particular rubber stays grippy on ice.
The uppers lace through big D-rings. Surprisingly, the boots are easy to manage while wearing gloves.
Inside, there are a series of aluminum membranes to reflect heat back to the skin. These are sandwiched inside foam and reservoirs that wick moisture away from the foot.
Underneath, the footbed has a waffle shape with air pockets to trap heat.
Overall, the boot feels bulky but very warm and stable.
- Made for extreme cold down to – 94°F
- Lugged rubber sole grips ice in frigid temperatures
- Waterproof upper and lower
- Lace-up design can be managed while wearing gloves
- Bulky and not very flexible
Merrell Men’s Coldpack Ice+ 8″ Zip Polar Waterproof Snow Boot
What about the best winter hiking boots? If you want to stay toasty and dry while out on the trails, give this pair a try. They are also comfortable for walking in the city.
The waterproof design means that the leather and mesh upper are sealed against rain, snow, and slush. The soles, meanwhile, are Vibram Arctic Grip rubber with outstanding traction on ice.
The interior has 200 grams of low-bulk insulation to keep you warm in cool to cold temperatures. However, you’ll probably want to wear tall socks so that the boots don’t chafe.
- Best winter hiking boots for dealing with cold and wet weather on the trails
- Vibram Arctic Grip outsoles for traction on ice
- 200 g of insulation
- More comfortable with boot socks to prevent the uppers from chafing
UGG Women’s Adirondack Boot Iii
If you’re looking for the best winter boots for women, you’ve probably heard about UGGs. Unlike the original suede and wool boots, these have a spider rubber outsole that stays flexible and grippy in very cold temperatures.
Furthermore, the upper is waterproof. It has a leakproof bootie with a 17-millimeter thick wool lining and insoles. The upper unrolls to stand 10 inches tall to keep your legs warm. Talk about cozy! The boots are rated to -26°F.
As reviewers point out, they are stylish enough for the city and warm enough for the countryside. If there’s any downside it’s that we’ve heard they run a bit narrow.
- Rated for -26°F
- Cozy wool lining
- Spider rubber outsole for good traction in frigid temps
- Might not fit wide feet
KEEN Women’s Revel 4 Mid Height Polar Snow Boot
To continue with waterproof winter boots for women, we wanted to include a pair for wide feet. These are women’s winter hiking boots from a brand that tends to run wide. If you like to be able to wiggle your toes, you’re going to love them.
Not only are they waterproof, but they are well-insulated and rated down to -25°F. Even better, they have a breathable membrane that lets sweat evaporate without allowing water to seep in. That’s crucial for hiking in wet and cold conditions
They have a high-traction outsole that grips slick surfaces in freezing temperatures. At the same time, the rubber won’t leave marks on the linoleum.
Also, if you go snowshoeing, the boots are compatible.
- Waterproof winter hiking boots
- Rated down to -25°F
- Breathable membrane keeps feet dry
- High-traction outsole is non-marking
- Women with narrow feet may find them too large
Columbia Women’s Ice Maiden II Snow Boot
These affordable winter boots are made for city life. They are waterproof and stay warm down to -25°F. They are tall enough and have good enough traction to deal with slippery surfaces caused by snow or rain. There’s even a nice amount of TECHLITE cushioning to make you feel like you want to keep walking.
- Rated for -25°F
- Non-marking all-weather traction outsole
- TECHLITE insole for energy return
- Not for hiking or rough terrain
SOREL Women’s Out ‘N About III Conquest Waterproof Boot
The best stylish winter boots look a lot like the best winter shoes for women. You’d hardly know they are winter boots unless you see the wool lining on the upper.
Although they don’t have aggressive lugs, they have good traction, plus they are as comfortable as running shoes. If you walk a lot, you’ll be pleased with them.
These winter sneakers are fully waterproof. The only thing you need to do is follow the care instructions to keep them looking great and repelling water for years to come.
- Sleek and stylish
- Comfortable as a sneaker yet fully waterproof and warm
- Lined with wool
- Energy-return insole
- Require some maintenance to stay looking good
We hope our reviews of the best winter boots helped you find the most comfortable and cozy winter footwear today. If you have questions, feel free to drop us a comment below.