Updated: June 5, 2015
Winter Boot Reviews:Finding the Best Winter Boots - There are two ways to think about winter: there are the people who love it, who say bring on the snow, bring on the icy temperatures, and let me out onto the slopes or hills. Let me build snowmen or get a great workout shoveling the walk, and then let me cozy up with some hot chocolate. And there's the other camp who would, if given the choice, hibernate through the winter and come out again only when it's reasonable and mild and snowless, who shiver when they walk past a window, or rush from heated house to heated car to heated workplace without stopping to breathe in some fresh air. The differences between these two groups can be broken down into two factors: a good attitude, and a great pair of winter boots. This is your guide to choosing the best children's, men's, and women's winter boots so you can feel the winter sun on your face and breathe in some cold air. You may even feel like throwing a snowball.
Why Do You Need Good Winter Boots? - Winter boots are essential because when your feet are warm, the rest of your body feels much warmer. Worry about your head, your core, and your feet, and with top quality apparel on them, you should be ready to brave the great outdoors. While you can find winter boots in any number of fashions, colors, textures, and heights, the important thing to remember is that they have to be warm and keep your feet dry. Otherwise, you have a pair of boots that will look great in your closet eight months of the year, and ones that perform poorly during the other four. Boots need to protect your feet from moisture, which is uncomfortable and can make your feet colder. They also need to protect from the cold to prevent frostbite. If you're thinking you don't want to be outside long enough for frostbite to be an option, you still need warm boots to stay comfortable. And we have to point out that it is always smart to be prepared. You always hear stories about people driving somewhere in the winter who end up stranded in the wilderness - you don't want to be that person, but if you are, you want to have good snow boots. Do You Need Snow Boots? - If you are a winter enthusiast, snow boots are the way to go. They differ from winter boots in a few key ways: they are designed to protect your feet from frigid temperatures and moisture. They are heavy duty and ideal for those who spend a lot of time outdoors, whether playing, walking, or working, or who live in especially chilly climes. You will want to choose a pair that is at least ankle high to keep snow from getting inside. We say go higher. The uppers are typically made from rugged leather or nylon and may have sealed seams for moisture protection. Look for features like fleece, fur, or faux fur cuffs, drawstring closures at the top to keep snow out, and a sole that is 100 percent waterproof. Rubber is a good choice. There are several good brands to choose from, notably North Face, Columbia, Timberland, Sorel, Ugg, and Helly Hansen. Editors at Skiing.about selected several of the top models, including Columbia's Bugaboot. This snow boot has Omni-Tech fabric which is both breathable and waterproof, 200g Thinsulate insulation, cushioning from Techlite, and a non-marking, dual density Omni-Grip outsole for superior traction. The fabric also promotes protection through use of an anti-microbial material known as AgION. The boot is heat-locking, relatively light-weight, durable, and comfortable. This men's boot costs from $56 to $110 (see the Columbia Sportswear winter boots here). About.com chose Sorel's Joan of Artic Snow boot as one of the best. This women's winter boot has a faux fur cuff, waterproof full-grain suede leather, sealed seam construction, washable recycled felt liner, and is temperature rated as low as minus 25 degrees F. And they're cute. They cost from $88 - $132 (view top selling Sorel's here). Kids need big protection, and good girls' and boys' winter boots are crucial. Try Columbia's Little Kid/Big Kid Snow Day Boot. They have synthetic and suede construction, Slimtech insulation, are water-resistant, have a non-marking Omni-Grip outsole with great traction, and are temperature rated to minus 25 degrees F. They cost less than $60. We recommend all kids who live in areas where winter hits with snow and freezing temperatures get snow boots. They will provide the best protection, and there is an incredible selection from which they can choose. You can browse the best selling winter boots online here.