Snow boots have an unfortunate reputation: They’re bulky, ugly, and often fall apart. Those who choose not to keep a pair of extra shoes stashed away at work are burdened with the responsibility of wearing one pair of shoes everyday for months. That’s commitment, real commitment. Rather than wade through the copious options alone, we’ve decided to enlist the help of readers to find the most worthy candidates. Below, we’ve assembled the five best snow boots, as dictated by you. Now, we need you to vote on which one reigns supreme. Go forth!
Alright guys we get it: You really, really like Sorel. By far, Sorel won your adoration, obtaining enough votes that I eventually stopped counting. However, there were a few naysayers. The insoles don’t come out, the compressed wooden heel often breaks and lets in water, and, oh yes, Columbia recently bought Sorel and moved the whole kit and caboodle to Asia, where, we’re told, the quality suffers.
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I have a pair from 3 winters ago. Sorry to say mine started falling apart almost immediately (and these boots are not cheap). The biggest problem (for me) was the compressed wood heel, which began to unravel after 1 week. Seriously, WHY PUT A WOODED HEEL ON AN OTHERWISE WATERPROOF BOOT? That heel, which also seemed to have been untreated or uncoated, sucked up all the anti-melt and just dried up and flaked/unraveled.
Between Portland’s rain and Minneapolis’ snow, these boots couldn’t cut it. Dear Sorel, please rubber coat those heels.
This boot has gotten me through SEVEN Chicago winters, including but not limited to, last years multiple days of -20, and 2012’s ‘snowpocalypse’. Some fleece lined tights under my pants, pop these bad boys on, and you’re good to go. Nice and grippy for once you get to the inevitably slippery as fuck El platform too. And it’s not bad to wear them inside either, easy to pop off and don’t annihilate the movement of your ankle. 10/10 would buy over and over. - CaiteyO
Coming in at second place is L.L. Bean’s boot, an American standard and New England’s unofficial shoe of choice. These bad boys come with a lifetime guarantee (no really, they will give you free boots), goretex lining for warmth, and a classic silhouette. And yes, there’s many options, but the consensus seems to be that duck boots are too flimsy and hiking boots too ugly. Our recommendation? Try these. Here are some of you singing their praises:
I’m a born and bred Mainer. They’ll pry my shearling-lined Bean boots from my cold, dead hands. Not my cold, dead feet, however, because even in death, my feet will remain toasty warm and super dry. As an added bonus, they’re still handmade in Brunswick, Maine. You can also get them shearling-lined in a lighter color leather, or with Goretex lining, but the ones below are my jam. Lifetime warranty included, any issues and Bean will replace them, no questions asked.
Aside from being warm, cute, and waterproof, they are really well-made. However, the best part (in my opinion) is that when the time comes that you need to have them repaired, and you call up to ask about a local licensed repair place, they straight up replace them. New boots. Because they have that lifetime satisfaction guarantee thing that they actually honor. My friend wore her pair out in three years and just wanted to have them repaired, but L.L. Bean was like “hey girl, I see you enjoyed those boots, so have a new pair for $0.” -djbarbie
Gracing the toes of every high school mean girl since the dawn of time, Uggs have quite the reputation. And that’s not necessarily a good thing: Since they also make some damn quality boots. Case in point? Ugg Adirondack.
I’m sure I’ll catch flack for this but I love my Ugg Adirondack Boot, I have the short ones but there is a tall version as well. They are warm and the foot bed and sole are made by Vibram (seriously, I should be embarrassed to own these) and they are SO COMFORTABLE for walking.
For those of you who don’t mess with hiking boots, let me cordially introduce you to Bogs—the insulated, vegan boot with a trim black silhouette that’s inconspicuous enough for the office. However, let us warn you: They’re not the best on ice.
Ooh! I have the makes-me-look-like-a-preschooler Bogs, and I love them, but these are quite nice for when I don’t want to look like I just got in from recess. - mrsbiederhof
Bogs Valerie: Completely waterproof, lightly insulated, fashionable, comfortable, sturdy, and vegan to “boot”. - CognitiveScientist2