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Best Women's Snow Boots

Updated December 2018
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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.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
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.
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 110 Models Considered
  • 5 Models Tested
  • 1 Experts Interviewed
  • 124 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

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

    Why trust BestReviews?
    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.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    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.

    Shopping guide for best women’s snow boots

    Last Updated December 2018

    Just because Old Man Winter is doing his worst, that’s no reason for your feet to be cold. The right pair of snow boots will not only keep your feet toasty warm but they will also keep your step secure on wet, icy, or snowy ground. And, of course, you don’t have to sacrifice fashion for function. Many snow boots are stylish enough to match just about any outfit or personal taste.

    Because there are a lot of winter boots and snow boots on the market, we did the research for you. This handy shopping guide can help you find the perfect pair of snow boots for your needs.

    Snow boots offer more warmth and traction than simple winter boots.

    Winter boots vs. snow boots

    While all snow boots are winter boots, not all winter boots are snow boots. Although there’s a lot of overlap between cold-weather boot designs, there are some differences, too.

    Winter boots, as the name implies, are meant to be worn when the temperature takes a dive. These boots are warm and snug. Some have fleece or another thick lining for extra warmth. You’ll find winter boots made of leather, synthetics, or a blend of both. While it’s common for winter boots to be water resistant, and some are even waterproof, that’s not true for every winter boot, so check before purchasing if you live somewhere rainy.

    When it comes to style, you’ll find winter boots that are very rugged, high fashion, and everything in between. You might even want to own several pairs so you can match your boot to your outfit and activity.

    Rain boots also fall under the winter boot category. These boots are often simply rubber shells that tug on over your regular shoes to keep out water and keep your feet and footwear dry and protected.

    Snow boots are very warm. Typically, these boots have a thick fleece or synthetic lining that keeps your tootsies warm and cozy even when the thermometer reads wells below freezing. Some snow boots are rated for temperature and comfort in the same way as sleeping bags. For example, boots might be rated for comfort down to -10°F or even -30°F. Not every manufacturer provides ratings, however, and even those that do suggest them as a guideline, not an absolute.

    Usually, at a minimum, the soles, stitching, and uppers of snow boots are waterproof. The shaft of the boot might also be waterproof, or merely water resistant, so read labels before purchasing.  Many snow boots, especially those made from nylon or other synthetic materials, have drawstrings or tabs around the top of the shaft so you can tighten the boot to keep out snow.

    The tread of a snow boot is thick, rubbery, and usually deeply grooved to provide good traction on wet, slippery surfaces. The overall style of these cold-weather footwear staples is generally fairly rugged, although you can find some fashionable designs as well.

    The perfect mix of fashion and ruggedness

    Looking something like footwear that would be worn in Game of Thrones, the 100% leather Joan of Arctic boot has a faux fur lining and comes in a wide range of stylish colors. The boots are fully waterproof, so your feet will stay dry and warm even in the worst winter weather.

    Snow boot features

    Here are some features that elevate the best snow boots above the rest of the pack.

    Removable liner: In some snow boots, particularly those made for hiking or other outdoor pursuits, the warm fleece or synthetic lining is removable. That means you can take out the liner, wash and dry it, and put it back into the boot – a big plus if you tend to have sweaty feet.

    Drawstring closure: Stepping into a snowdrift and getting a boot full of snow is unpleasant, to say the least. A drawstring or snap closure at the top of the boot upper keeps snow where it belongs: out of your footwear.

    Excellent traction: While all snow boots have rugged treads, some brands go further with soles engineered to offer the highest level of traction even when things get icy. Look for lugs, deep grooves, raised patterns, and extra “spikes” or points to keep you steady on your feet.

    Laces: Most snow boots close with laces down the front of the upper. You’ll also find boots that close with clips, which is a great option if you have arthritis or weakness in your hands.

    Padded tongue: A little bit of extra padding on the tongue of the boots makes them far more comfortable.

    Waterproof: The best snow boots are entirely waterproof from top to bottom, not merely water resistant.

    Cozy warmth with a modern edge

    These tall snow boots are super cozy and warm, but the best thing about them – aside from the waterproof construction, thick lining, rugged soles, and heavy D-rings for the laces – is their fashionable, contemporary appearance. The quilted synthetic uppers with a touch of faux fur peeking out the top are just as suited to your trip to work as a trip through the woods.

    Temperature rating: If you plan on wearing your boots in the coldest climes or for extended outdoor activities, it’s worth seeking a manufacturer that rates its boots for temperature. You don’t want to buy a pair of snow boots only to discover too late that they aren’t warm enough for the conditions you face.

    Outer material: Most snow boots are made of a rugged, synthetic polyester fabric such as Gore-Tex. Some boots have a rubber foot that attaches to a synthetic upper, while others are all leather or even suede. Although synthetics are easy to care for and tend to resist stains better than leather or suede, the choice of material mostly comes down to preference and style.

    Lining material: Whether it’s real fleece, faux fleece, or a synthetic blend, the lining in your snow boots should be warm enough to keep your feet cozy but not so hot you feel like your feet are on fire.

    Style: While a snow boot is a sturdy piece of footwear by definition, that doesn’t mean it has to lack all style. If you’ll be wearing your boots while running errands or commuting to work, you’ll probably prefer a tailored or elegant style, while snow boots purely for outdoor recreation can be as rugged as you please.

    Fit: Once you find the style of snow boot you like best, it’s time to find the perfect fit. These tips will help you choose the right size.

    • Because your feet may swell as the day wears on, it’s best to shop for footwear– snow boots and other types as well – late in the afternoon. That way, you won’t wake up to snow boots that pinch.

    • It’s not true that you should buy snow boots a size larger than your regular shoes. Go for the same size you normally wear.

    • You should be able to wiggle your toes comfortably inside your boots. If you can’t, the toe box is too tight or the boots are too small.

    • Boots that fit correctly don’t slide up and down your heel as you walk or grind or press against it, either. The back of the boot should comfortably touch the back of your heel without rubbing, slipping, or squeezing.

    • While some snow boots take a bit of tugging to get on, it shouldn’t be a real struggle. If you feel like it’s a major workout just to put on your boots, they’re likely too small or the style isn’t right for your feet.

    • You shouldn’t feel any uncomfortable squeezing or pressure across the top of your foot.

    • The arches of your feet need good support. The right boots cradle your arches comfortably and take some of the pressure off your feet.

    • It should be fairly easy to fasten the boots. Whether they have laces or a system of straps and clips, you don’t want to spend too much time donning your footwear.

    Snow boot prices

    If you’ll just be wearing the boots occasionally in conditions that aren’t too severe, you’ll find many satisfactory snow boots in the $30 to $50 range.

    If you live in an area with extremely cold winters, or you want boots to wear for outdoor sports, expect to pay $100 to $200 for the warmest boots with the best treads.

    For most wearers, snow boots in the middle of the above extremes are the best bet. For $50 to $100, you’ll find nice boots that are well made, warm and snug, and reasonably fashionable.

    There’s no need to sacrifice style when choosing snow boots. Some are very fashionable.

    FAQ

    Q. How tall should my boots be?

    A. While height is something of a personal preference, in general, your snow boots should come at least up to your lower calf to protect your feet and ankles from the cold and keep snow and slush out of your boots and your pants. If you’ll be in very cold conditions or participating in outdoor winter sports, you’ll be most comfortable in boots that come up higher on your calf.

    Q. Do I wear my pants inside or outside my snow boots?

    A. Ideally, you should tuck the bottoms of your pants into your snow boots and then fasten the boots’ drawstrings snugly around your leg. This prevents snow and slush from creeping into your shoes or up your pants.

    Q. Are women’s snow boots really different from men’s boots?

    A. While the styles might be very similar, women’s snow boots are sized and shaped appropriately to comfortably fit women’s feet, so you’ll be happiest with boots designed for women.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Bronwyn
      Bronwyn
      Editor
    • Devangana
      Devangana
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Melinda
      Melinda
      Web Producer
    • Michelle
      Michelle
      Writer
    • Stacey
      Stacey
      Writer

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