Winter may be halfway over according to the calendar, but if you’ve looked outside lately, it sure doesn’t look like the snow, cold, and ice are going anywhere soon. If you don’t have one of the best pairs of winter boots for women, now is the time to invest in a sturdy pair of boots that will keep your feet nice and toasty until spring weather comes to thaw us out.
How do you know which are the best winter boots for you, though? With so many choices, it can be difficult to know where to start. That’s why we’ve made it easy for you, rounding up the best winter boots for women, whether you need a rugged pair with great traction for walking around on icy sidewalks, a pair of extreme cold weather boots for below-zero temps, or a stylish pair to coordinate with your favorite winter coat.
Keep reading for answers to common questions about the best winter boots for women, or scroll on down to shop our picks!
What are the warmest winter boots for women?
If your top concern is keeping your tootsies toasty, you’ll want to look for a pair of boots with thermal insulation. These will trap heat inside the boot and prevent ice-cold toes. Try Columbia’s Heavenly Omni-Heat boot (Buy on Columbia, $99.90, originally $140) or some of our other boots for extreme cold, below.
Another thing to keep in mind is that in the winter, you’re likely to be dealing with puddles, either from rain or melting snow piles (because the snow will melt, eventually). Since wet feet quickly turn into cold feet, you’ll want to opt for waterproof, or at least water-resistant materials. Rubber outsoles are great for keeping out moisture, and also won’t stain if you live in an area where the roads and sidewalks are heavily salted to prevent slippery conditions.
What are the best winter boots for extreme cold?
There’s a rating system for warmth that can be helpful if you’re in a very cold climate. Most boots are ranked with an insulation rating of 100 to 200g, though some may go as high as 400g. If you have poor circulation and your feet and hands get cold easily, or you’re venturing out into truly tundra-like conditions, you’ll want to pay attention to this. Some brands also specify temperatures, in Fahrenheit or Celsius, that boots are rated safe for venturing outdoors in.
Other things to take into consideration when shopping for winter boots for extreme cold include insoles, which can be replaced for warmer versions, moisture-wicking materials that keep your feet from getting sweaty, and molded footbeds that offer maximum comfort while walking.
What brand of winter boots are the warmest?
Among those in the know (that is, folks who live in climates that get very cold in the winter — hello Minnesota and Vermont!), Sorel boots are a very popular choice. And it’s true, Sorel winter boots can’t be beat when it comes to cold-weather expertise and quality craftsmanship. (The Joan of Arctic boot is a perennial favorite and often sells out when a storm is forecast — Buy on Sorel: $157.50, originally $210).)
There are plenty of other brands to consider when shopping for the best winter boots for women, however. The North Face, Columbia, and L.L. Bean all make excellent boots that will hold up against any storm.
Note that different brands use different methods of insulation. Many favor primaloft — a waterproof, polyester lining — while others use Omni-Heat (a heat-reflective technology meant to put heat back into your body) or synthetic Heatseeker insulation. These ensure that the insides of your boots will not only be soft and comfortable, but will be warm enough on even the most frigid of days.
What are the most stylish winter boots for women?
Now that we’ve gone over the functional requirements for a great winter boot, let’s talk about style. If you’re not a fan of bulky, lumberjack-looking designs, don’t worry — there are plenty of modern winter boots that manage to integrate traditional warming features into cute footwear that will complement your favorite outfits. We love the Out ‘N About Plus boot from Sorel (Buy on Sorel ($90, originally $120) and these adorable boots from Bzees ($89).
We’ve gone ahead and chosen a selection that rank high for most of these key features. Keep scrolling for Woman’s World‘s picks for the 16 best winter boots for women!
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Looking for more great winter outerwear? Don’t miss our other round-ups!
- 14 Best Winter Gloves for Women That Will Keep Your Fingers From Freezing in the Cold
- 25 Best Winter Coats for Women to Keep Cozy and Stylish in the Cold
- 13 Women’s Winter Coats That Will Keep You Cozy in Extreme Cold Weather
What are the best winter boots for women in 2021?
- Best stylish winter boots for women: Sorel Women’s Tofino II Boot
- Warmest winter boots for women: Columbia Women’s Heavenly Omni-Heat Waterproof Boot
- Best waterproof women’s winter boots: Cat Footwear Stormers
- Best comfortable women’s winter boots: Bzees Ovation Water Resistant Bootie
- Best women’s winter boots for extreme cold: UGG Adirondack III Waterproof Boot
- Best affordable women’s winter boots for extreme cold: Women’s Cascara Omni-Heat Boot
- Best heavy duty winter boots for women: Sorel Joan of Arctic Boots
- Best women’s winter boots on Amazon: Columbia Heavenly Slip II Omni-Heat Boot
- Best L.l. Bean winter boots for women: L.L. Bean Waterproof Nordic Casual Boots
- Best short women’s winter boots: Sorel Out ‘N About Plus Boot
- Best women’s thermal boots: Polar Products Womens Winter Thermal Snow Boot
- Best water resistant women’s winter boots: Journee Collection Flurry Snow Boots
Why we like them:
- Waterproof canvas uppers
- Removable footbed — perfect for orthotics
- Stylish faux fur cuff
You can’t go wrong with Sorel’s trusty snow boots, and the Tofino II is one of their most popular. A coated canvas waterproof upper and removable footbed come standard in this model, as does 100g microfleece insulation. Decorated with a faux fur cuff, we think they’re very stylish for a snow boot!
Promising review: “These winter boots are gorgeous and not too clunky or heavy. They are beautiful and I won’t feel silly wearing them out shopping with a cute winter outfit. Also, I love that they don’t make my feet look huge and yet they feel very roomy. Love the black accents and faux fur trim.”
Why we like them:
- Contoured footbed is removable for orthotics
- Soles have great traction
Columbia doesn’t mess around when it comes to functional footwear, and the proof is in its Heavenly Omni-Heat snow boots, which reflect heat back into your body. They feature waterproof membranes, 200g insulation that’s rated for temps up to -25 Fahrenheit, a removable, contoured footbed, and non-marking, heavy-duty traction. Note that reviewers advise sizing up!
Promising review: “These are fur-lined and waterproof, and have a cushioned footbed and quick-pull laces. I have worn them all day for work and was still comfortable, no rubbing or blisters. I played in about a foot of snow with my kids this week, and with two pairs of mid-weight socks my feet stayed warm and dry. Now the temp has warmed up and there are huge slushy puddles everywhere, and my feet have stayed dry while walking. I have only slipped once and have mostly had great traction on icy surfaces like sidewalks and playground equipment. I am normally a size 8; I had to order a full-size up to size 9, not just a half size like I typically do for boots. These are amazing!”
Why we like them:
- Unisex styling and sizing
- Heavy-duty waterproof construction
- Available in 3 different heights and 4 colors
These heavy duty rubber boots will be just the ticket in rain, snow, sleet, or any other type of wet weather that comes your way. We love the unisex sizing and styling, so anyone can wear — and love! — these winter boots. Choose from soft toe or steel toe construction, three different heights, and four colors, including black, olive, light purple, or light blue. The cushioned footbed keeps your feet comfy, stabilizing, anti-slip soles keep you surefooted on icy terrain, and soft neoprene lining won’t cause discomfort around the ankles like some boots can. Plus, they’re 100 percent vegan!
Promising review: “My husband has these boots and loves them so much, I’m going to get myself a pair! It’s been a very snowy winter, and these keep his feet dry even when he steps in one of these giant slushy puddles of melted snow. The traction is good too, so he can navigate slippery sidewalks and sledding hills. Great winter boots that will be equally great in the rainy spring season!”
Why we like them:
- Cute and comfortable
- Machine washable
- Warm and stylish
The great thing about all Bzees shoes is that they’re completely machine washable — just toss them in and wash away any mud, salt stains, or other wintry gunk that accumulates when you wear shoes every day. And you will wear these winter boots every day! They’re cushioned with “comfort cone” gel, with extra shock absorption in the heels, and have air-infused outsoles, so you if you feel like you’re walking on air, it’s because you actually are. Anti-microbial and odor control technology helps them stay fresh, even if you don’t put them in the wash, and a water-resistant upper keeps your feet dry. We love the plush, faux-fur collar on these winter boots, which come in three color choices. The lace-up detail is stylish, but don’t worry — it’s just decorative. Zippers on the side make these a breeze to put on and kick off.
Promising review: “Perfect! For me, they make my knees not hurt. I have all 3 colors and wear them literally every day with the cool weather. Them being easy to clean is just a bonus!”
Why we like them:
- Shearling lining for maximum warmth
- Removable insoles are orthotic-compatible
- Rubber soles have great traction
Though pricier than some of the other picks on our list, these waterproof leather UGGs are pretty much guaranteed to keep your feet from freezing — they’re temperature-rated for cold reaching -32 degrees Fahrenheit! They’re also decked out with all of the luxe features that have come to be associated with the brand, including shearling lining and removable insoles (so you can use your orthotics with these). Better yet, they’re reinforced with tough rubber soles to get you through even the harshest of conditions.
Promising review: “I wear a size 9 and ordered a 9.5. The fit was perfect. Very comfortable boot, and looks super cute. I wore them all day in the snow and my feet stayed warm and dry. I love these boots — they are my new favorite winter boots!”
Why we like them:
- Available in two bright colors
- Waterproof material
- Locks heat in
Keep your feet snug this winter with a pair of warm, sturdy boots that put the heat in Omni-Heat (the patented high-tech heat system used by Columbia). These cute winter boots provide top-notch insulation, featuring a waterproof design that traps heat in while keeping moisture out. Add a pop of color to your outfit with two vibrant color options: Bold pink or bright blue will inject some fun into your winter wardrobe.
Promising review: “I bought these to replace my favorite boots my dog ate. I have a hard time finding boots that actually keep my feet warm, and these did not disappoint. I have worn them multiple times, shoveling and playing in the snow, and my feet never got cold. They are super comfortable also and I get a lot of compliments on them. I wear a size 10 and ordered a 10, I personally didn’t have any issues with sizing..”
Why we like them:
- Classic waterproof boot for extreme cold
- Waterproof suede uppers and rubber soles
- Available in 6 colors
When it comes to finding the best winter boots for women, these Joan of Arctic boots by Sorel are preceded by their reputation. Well known as the go-to pick for cold weather footwear, Sorel boots are always a great choice, and these heavy duty ones are best-sellers for a reason. Featuring the classic Sorel silhouette, complete with a faux fur cuff, they’ve got rubber soles with great traction, fully seam-sealed waterproof suede uppers, and come in an array of colors. Get them while they’re on sale!
Promising review: “These are exactly what I’ve been looking for. I tend to have cold fingers and toes, and these boots have done a fantastic job of keeping them warm. We had a negative degree cold snap recently and these babies pulled through. They are heavy duty without weighing down my feet, very comfortable and so cute! They aren’t exactly slip-on boots and do require a bit of effort, but you just have to loosen the ties at the bottom and they easily tighten right back up. I ordered my true size and they fit perfectly with thick socks. Well worth the money!”
Why we like them:
- Slip-proof sole
- Breathable material
- Comes in three casual colors
Trade those bulky boots for a pair of functional and stylish ones. These boots come in three casual colors including gray, white, and black so you can pair it with any outfit. For those icy days, the rubber sole will help keep you stable and avoid slipping. The breathable and waterproof material will also keep your feet dry and warm as you trudge through the snowy streets.
Promising review: “So comfortable. I can wear it indoors and it doesn’t feel too warm. The Omni heat stuff is amazing for when it’s freezing outside and it’s waterproof which is great for walking through snow.“
Why we like them:
- Faux fur trim
What’s not to love about these L.L. Bean boots? With a TEK2.5 waterproof membrane that will repel moisture from their suede shaft and a 100g Primaloft lining, you can rest assured that this faux-fur style will do its best to keep you snug and dry, even as it turns heads and nets you compliments.
Promising review: “My husband bought me this pair of boots a few years ago … at the time, I thought it was a lot of money. However, after using these boots each winter here in the snowbelt in northern Michigan, I have to say that it was a very good buy. These boots are very warm and I have no problem in deep snow. They fit true to size as well, allowing some warm socks but not requiring a few layers to make the boots fit and stay warm. Each year I spray them with waterproofer and they stay fine. So far, they still look fairly new and have worn beautifully. Zippers work great too. I’m an all-around happy customer.”
Why we like them:
- Fully waterproof leather upper
- Seam-sealed rubber base
- Available in 10 different colors and patterns
Those who prefer shorter winter boots are sure to delight in these Sorel finds, which can traverse the muckiest and muddiest of fields or streets with ease, courtesy of a seam-sealed rubber base and a fully waterproof leather upper. They come in a plethora of colors and patterns, but this late in the season, some are sold out in more popular sizes. (And keep in mind that reviewers almost universally say they run small.) Click around to find which ones are available in your size and snatch them up while they’re on sale!
Promising review: “These are exactly what I needed to keep my feet dry in all our rain (and small amounts of snow). They don’t have a ton of cushioning, which is perfect because it leaves room to wear thick or double pairs of socks to stay warm. I’ve been wearing them outside basically nonstop since I received them a week ago and they’re only getting more comfortable! Fairly easy to slip on for a quick trip outside as long as I loosen the laces a bit.”
Why we like it:
- Knee-high length
- Slip-resistant rubber sole
- Thermal lining
Whether they’re for a mountain getaway or trudging through the slush on city streets, every woman needs a good pair of winter snow boots — and this thermal pair from Polar Products gets the job done at an affordable price! This knee-high boot is waterproof and features a lace-up design with a warm, fully lined interior, and slip-resistant rubber sole.
Promising review: “The boots are great! Good quality for the price! They are super warm and fit perfectly. I usually wear an 8.5 and ordered a 9 after reading other reviews. They are on the narrow side, but for my feet, the fit perfectly. I definitely recommend! They are totally waterproof! I’m in the northeast and we are getting pummeled with snow right now. I walked the dog and shoveled all morning, and my feet and the inside of the boots are dry and warm!”
Why we like them:
- Available in blue or gray
- Made from waterproof vegan leather
- Extra thick soles
These fashion-forward ankle boots may look like average footwear, but thanks to their extra-thick soles, water-resistant vegan leather construction, and faux fur collar accent, they can hold their own in any snowstorm. Available in gray or blue, they’ll look great with all your favorite winter outfits — and keep your feet warm and dry, too.
Promising review: “Very stylish, comfortable, warm winter boots. Plus, they are waterproof and good tread to keep from slipping. I ordered my usual size, and had no problem getting them on – the laces open up widely. My feet are not squished, and they’re roomy enough to be able to wear extra socks if needed depending on the weather. Perfect fit! These boots will be great during the winter season.”
This article originally appeared on our sister site, Woman’s World.