Best Overshoes

Updated June 2021
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

35 Models Considered
18 Hours Researched
2 Experts Interviewed
60 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best overshoes

Keeping your shoes in pristine condition is hard, especially in inclement weather and muddy terrain. Since you don’t want to spoil your digs, you may want to consider investing in some overshoes for total protection against the elements.

Overshoes have one goal: to keep your shoes squeaky clean by preventing contact with dirt, water, moisture, and anything that could stain them. Think of all the times you’ve tracked mud indoors, saturated collectible sneakers, or permanently stained suede shoes. Think back to the time it takes you to change from soiled shoes into clean ones. After careful thought, overshoes rise to the occasion of being an essential accessory.

Which overshoes are right for you? Fit is one of your greatest concerns. Overshoes designed for boots differ from those designed for dress shoes. To make sure your best shoes stay clean during all legs of your journey, you’ll want to think carefully about which overshoes you select. In this buying guide, we discuss your options.

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Even though overshoes have treads, you should still watch your step to prevent slips and falls. Avoid deep puddles, black ice, and slick areas while wearing overshoes.

Key considerations

Weather

Overshoes are made with weatherproof and waterproof materials to prevent stains from water and moisture. They’re ideal for use in rainy weather and right when it starts to snow. As expected, overshoes have their limits. For torrential rain or heavy snow, you should upgrade to weather-appropriate footwear instead.

Terrain

Terrain also plays a role in your selection of overshoes. If you’re simply walking on pavement or firm ground that is relatively even, lightweight overshoes without treads would probably suffice. If you’re walking on muddy or uneven ground, however, you definitely need a more rugged pair of overshoes with treads and other protective features.

Type of shoes

Shoes that fit well inside overshoes are those with flat soles, such as boots, sneakers, and flats. Those with bulky features or embellishments may have some difficulty fitting inside the overshoes, even spacious styles.

Unfortunately for those who wear heeled shoes or platforms, it's difficult to find compatible overshoes. Because shoe design, heel height, and heel shape vary so much in these styles, there aren’t any universal overshoes on the market yet.

Varieties of overshoes

Boot styles

Boot-style overshoes usually resemble snow boots or Wellington rain boots and are made with weather-resistant materials like nylon. They also feature well-defined rubber treads and toe guards. Since these overshoes are often used to traverse muddy ground, boot styles have a slight platform to limit how much you sink into the ground.

Of all varieties, these tend to have the most features to customize fit. You’ll find Velcro systems, pinch buckles, and drawstring detail in many boot styles.

Mid- and high-top styles

Mid- and high-top styles are typically worn over sneakers as well as higher-cut shoes and booties. More often than not, these overshoes are made from thick PVC vinyl and have zipper closures. They’re lightweight and easy to pack for travel.

While mid- and high-top styles don’t have treads like boot styles do, they usually have textured bottoms for improved grip. Some of these overshoes feature elastic or drawstring at the top to prevent moisture from seeping in.

Shoe/slip-on styles

Shoe and slip-on styles have the lowest cut of all overshoes. They’re made from PVC or rubber and have a great degree of flexibility to stretch over shoes for a snug fit.

Because these overshoes fit almost like gloves, they are somewhat limited in shoe compatibility. That said, they tend to work well with most men’s casual and dress shoes

Main features

Seals and seams

Overshoes are constructed either as single units or with hermetically sealed panels. In addition to non-porous materials, this design feature is what prevents water and debris from penetrating the overshoes.

Treads

Lightweight overshoes, like those intended for sneakers or occasional use, will either lack treads or have textured outsoles. It’s important to avoid walking on slick surfaces when you’re wearing these, as they don’t provide much traction.

Overshoes designed for heavier use, especially those that cover boots or shoes, tend to have well-defined treads. Keep in mind that these outsoles will add considerable weight to your footwear, so your legs and feet may fatigue if you wear them for an extended period of time.

Sizing

There’s no standard sizing for overshoes, and each manufacturer has its own compatibility chart. You’ll probably need to measure the length of your shoe to find the right fit. Most overshoes are either unisex or men’s, and unfortunately, there aren’t any women-only styles.

Overshoe prices

Overshoes range in price from $12 to $130. More than anything, price is governed by coverage quality and how long they’re expected to last.

Inexpensive: Lightweight overshoes, namely those for sneakers, cost $20 and below. They hold up well for occasional use but will likely need replacement every year or two.

Mid-range: Overshoes priced between $20 and $40 include basic rubber boot and slip-on styles. They’re durable and last through several rainy seasons.

Expensive: Styles priced $50 and above are high-cut boot styles with top-notch treads, insulation, and fasteners. They’re intended for heavy use, and many can last up to 10 years if you maintain them.

Tips

  • Wear overshoes to the gym. If you’re taking a group fitness class, the last thing you want to do is track mud and moisture onto the hardwood floor. It’s dangerous, not to mention unsanitary. With overshoes, you won’t need to change your sneakers before class, which saves you time and lightens your gym bag.
  • Wear them to the zoo. If you’re visiting a zoo, consider wearing overshoes. Your feet and calves will be protected from fur, feathers, dirt, and accidents.
  • Wear them for gardening. If you’re an avid gardener, you know that your shoes can become soiled quickly. With overshoes, you can wear your favorite comfortable footwear while working.
  • Wear them for air travel. If you’re not thrilled at the idea of sharing close quarters with the general public, opt for lightweight overshoes. They’ll also keep your feet dry if your destination has wet weather.
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Rinse overshoes after wearing them in dirty conditions or wet weather. Toss them in the sink under running water, but make sure not to get the inside wet. Let them air dry thoroughly.

FAQ

Q. Isn’t it easier just to change my shoes instead of wearing overshoes?
A.
It’s not always practical to change your shoes. If you’re going shopping or heading somewhere with no temporary storage options, it may be easier to wear overshoes. Lightweight styles could be stored in a handbag or backpack. Or, you could simply continue to wear your overshoes while running errands.
 

Q. Why can’t I wear universal overshoes with high heels?
A. For one, spike heels and stilettos will likely puncture the overshoes. The added height of the heel also means the back of your foot will be too elevated to fit inside the overshoes. Of course, the most important concern is safety. You’re asking for trouble walking around in high heels with ill-fitting fabric that could make you trip and twist an ankle.
 

Q. Are overshoes available in kids’ sizes?
A.
Most manufacturers only make overshoes in adult sizes. While they may fit older kids within their size range, younger kids likely won’t fit in them. As a result, it’s best to simply opt for weather-appropriate footwear for children.
 

Q. Will overshoes make my feet and legs sweat?
A.
There’s a good chance you’ll work up a sweat in them. Because overshoes are designed to be non-porous, there’s no air circulation. As a result, your feet and calves might begin to feel sweaty or clammy when you’re walking around.

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