The 130 flex allows for precision edge-to-edge carving with little effort. Fits in both tech and touring bindings for the best of both worlds. Both the shell and liner can be molded to fit exactly how you want them to. Walk mode has a wider range of motion than the other boots we tested.
The stiffness of the boot will make it hard for novice skiers to enjoy.
The liner is heat-moldable and maintains heat pretty well. The shell can be pushed out in certain areas to accommodate unique feet issues. The stiffness allows for the skier to take these boots all over the mountains. The bottom buckle is easily adjustable. Kept our feet warm the entire day.
The 3-buckle system makes it a little more flexible than stated.
It is on the stiffer side, which allows for quicker edge-to-edge maneuverability. Both the shell and the liner are heat-moldable, allowing it to fit your feet exactly how it should. The 4-buckle system allows for higher adjustability. Has a tighter fit around the heel pocket.
Can be a bit too flexible for wearers who weigh more.
The 120 flex is stiff enough to allow quick edge-to-edge control, even in less-than-ideal conditions. The liner is fully moldable and the shell is adjustable in multiple places to help give you the perfect fit. Great for skiers who are going to the backside of the mountain on a regular basis.
The width may be too narrow for wider feet.
The 100 flex is great for beginners looking to progress or experts who love cruising groomed runs. Has a solid all-around fit for most customers. The liner is heat-moldable. Has 4 buckles for easy adjustability on the mountain. Has a walk mode for when you aren't skiing.
The toe box is on the narrow side.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
Skiers require quite a bit of gear to stay warm and safe on the slopes. Because ski gear looks stylish, shopping can be a lot of fun. Finding just the right skis and warm weather clothing for both style and performance may occupy much of the skier’s prep time. But don’t forget to save some of your shopping time to find the right pair of men’s ski boots.
Even though ski boots don’t deliver the excitement of other kinds of ski gear, the boots are among the most important items you’ll select. The boots serve as the connection between your body and the skis. The movement of your legs transfers to the skis through your boots, and that connection needs to be secure. Ultimately, wearing the right pair of men’s ski boots enables you to have more success on the slopes, and you’ll be more comfortable, too.
Not sure where to start? Read our buying guide and check out our favorite men’s ski boots to find your next pair.
When shopping for men’s ski boots, you want to match the right model to your level of skiing experience. You do this using the flex rating. The flex rating measures how easy it is to flex your ankle inside the boot. For example, experienced skiers need minimal flex to maintain high speed without the ankles giving way. Without boots of the correct flex rating, you could risk injury.
Understand that one flex rating number may not mean exactly the same thing from manufacturer to manufacturer. The industry has no set scale for measuring flex rating. Additionally, the flex rating scale differs for men’s and women’s ski boots. So, exercise caution if you’re a female skier using men’s boots, or vice versa.
Up to 75: Boots with the lowest flex ratings are made for inexperienced skiers. They work for those who ski at a slow speed on relatively smooth terrain. This style of men’s ski boot delivers the maximum comfort with minimal stiffness and the highest level of flexibility.
75 to 125: A mid-range flex rating is made for skiers with an average level of experience on the slopes. These boots work nicely if you’re skiing at medium speed over terrain of average difficulty. However, you can ski at faster speeds on rougher terrain in boots with a flex rating toward the upper end of this range. Cautious average skiers should stick to boots at the lower end of this range.
125 and above: These ski boots are made for the experienced skier only. They are extremely stiff, delivering the performance skiers need for maximum speeds and/or difficult terrain. An aggressive skier needs the limited flexibility in the design of this type of boot.
Here are a few other features to pay attention to when shopping for men’s ski boots.
Liner: A soft and flexible liner fits inside the plastic shell and provides warmth and comfort to the foot. Liners vary in thickness, depending on the model of ski boot. Thicker than average liners are warm and comfortable, but they’re not made for skiing at fast speeds.
Insole: The insole is the portion of the boot that supports the bottom of your foot. Most men’s ski boots have cheap insoles, so you might choose to spend money to upgrade yours. Consider selecting custom-fit insoles or heated insoles for maximum comfort.
Buckles: Many alpine ski boots have four buckles, two of which fit over the top of the foot and two in the ankle area. Many ski boots for inexperienced skiers have only three buckles. One oversize buckle in the ankle area allows for a bit more flex in the boot.
The sizes of men’s ski boots differ from those of other boots and shoes. Men’s ski boots use the measurement of the inner sole in centimeters as the size, called the Mondo Point scale). Men’s ski boots typically range in size from 23 to 31. These are roughly equivalent to shoe sizes 5 to 13. For men with smaller feet, you might want to consider women’s or children’s ski boot sizes. If your feet are larger than average, you might need to order ski boots from a specialty store.
Inexpensive: The least expensive ski boots cost $50 to $200 a pair. Cross-country ski boots, with a limited number of or no adjustable features, are less expensive than alpine ski boots.
Mid-range: Average alpine ski boots for men cost $200 to $350 per pair. These boot designs may include some personalized options, such as form-fitting liners. They also may allow you to adjust the angle of the boots to make them more comfortable for walking.
Expensive: The priciest men’s ski boots cost between $350 and $1,000 per pair. Boots in this price range are made for advanced skiers who ski fast on rough terrain. They also have plenty of adjustable and customizable features.
We expect the majority of our readers will find a high-quality pair of men’s ski boots in our matrix, but if you’re looking for something a little different, we did find a few other products worth considering. The Salomon X Access 80 Wide Ski Boots are lighter than other boots, providing a bit more comfort for less experienced skiers.
For advanced skiers, the Apex Antero Big Mountain Ski Boots deliver excellent performance. They have great support in the ankle, foot, and lower leg, allowing you to ski safely at high speeds on rough terrain.
With three positions of lean adjustment in the Full Tilt Drop Kick Ski Boots, you can create a personalized fit for walking comfortably. Cross-country skiers need their own type of boot, which differs from alpine ski boots.
The Whitewoods Nordic Cross-Country Insulated Ski Boots are highly durable and well insulated for a comfortable fit all day.
Q. Do I have to purchase ski boots when I want to try skiing?
A. No. Ski resorts have multiple options for renting any piece of ski gear that you need. If you aren’t sure if you’ll like skiing, it’s smart to rent gear for the first few times. If you enjoy the sport, you’ll want to buy your own gear for a much more precise and comfortable fit.
Q. Why are ski boots so uncomfortable?
A. The ski boot must be stiff in the ankle area and fit tightly to prevent injuries while skiing. This inflexible design makes ski boots uncomfortable for walking. However, modern ski boots are far more comfortable than those from a decade or so ago. Newer boots have better liners, more room in the toe box, and an adjustable fit to simplify walking.
Q. Do I need custom components in my ski boot?
A. Not necessarily. Certainly, custom-made parts like liners and insoles will help the boot fit your foot perfectly and make them more comfortable to wear. However, if you only ski a few times a year, you might not want to spend the extra money on custom items.
Q. How can I be certain that my ski boots will fit my ski bindings?
A. The length of the sole of the boot determines the required settings for the bindings. You can adjust the ski bindings to fit different lengths of boots. The length of the sole appears in print on the boot or on the side of the sole, making it easy to set the bindings properly.