Best Of
Best Women's Winter Boots Review
The Kamik Snowgem proved budget-friendly and comfortable; photo credit: Matt Granger

The Best Winter Boots for Women in 2021

From cold-weather hikers to stylish winter boots, and from deep-powder snow boots to insulated ice-grippers, we’ve got your feet covered with our list of the best winter boots for women.

Depending on where you live, winter can mean frigid temps, mud and rain, piles of snow, or anything in between. With that in mind, we’ve tested a wide variety of winter-worthy kicks and compiled the best winter boots for women that span all types of designs and uses.

Below, you’ll find boots separated into four categories: winter hiking bootssnow bootsextra-warm bootsstylish winter boots, and women’s rain boots. Of course, some boots could belong in more than one category, and this list doesn’t cover every boot out there.

But it’s quite comprehensive, and if you need more help deciding, be sure to check out the buyer’s guide at the end of this article.

We’ve tested all the boots we could get our hands on and used them through rain, snow, mud, and sun on countless adventures around the world. And we’ve whittled it down to our favorites here. These are the boots we recommend to family and friends, the boots we get excited to wear all winter long.

Best Women’s Winter Hiking Boots

Just because it’s cold out doesn’t mean you have to stop hiking. In fact, winter means fewer crowds and some amazing opportunities to have the trail all to yourself. Choose a boot that provides adequate grip and insulation, and winter hiking could soon become your new favorite pastime.

Oboz Bridger 7″ Insulated Winter Boots

Oboz Bridger Winter Hiking Boots

Whether shoveling the driveway or hiking big miles, these boots ($185) will keep you warm, dry, and comfortable. Like most winter hiking boots, they have 200 g of insulation. On top of that, though, they also have wool-topped insoles to keep feet warm on the bottom. The waterproof leather is impressively durable and has stood up to many rocky hikes and winter scrambles.

The directional lugs provide great traction, and specialized winterized rubber soles are infused with silica to improve grip on icy surfaces. And it works. We ventured out on extremely slick roads and frozen trails and never slipped. The 7-inch height provides plenty of ankle support while still allowing full range of movement.

And if you want even more, check out the Oboz Bridger 9-inch Insulated Boot ($195).

Check Price at REI

Merrell Thermo Chill Mid Waterproof Boots

Merrell Thermo Chill Winter Hiking Boot

Between the additional insulation and waterproofing, winter hiking boots can get expensive. But the Merrell Thermo Chill ($110) manages to pack all the necessary winter features into a reasonably priced package. And more than that, they rank among the best waterproof winter boots out there. The 200 g of M-Select insulation is warm without being bulky.

And the contoured insoles are flexible and supportive. They’re also removable should you choose to switch them out for your favorite aftermarket insoles. As with most over-the-ankle boots, we recommend breaking them in slowly. They proved comfortable right out of the box, but if you rarely wear hiking boots, rubbing and blisters may be a concern.

We found the Thermo Chill to have decent but not excellent traction. For most cold, snowy outings, we experienced no problems. On one particularly icy trail, we did experience slippage.

These are available in both a regular and a wide fit.

Check Price at REICheck Price at Amazon

Vasque Coldspark UltraDry Snow Boot

Vasque Coldspark UltraDry Snow Boot:

These boots are a great choice for both snowy hikes in the mountains and winter walks around town. The 200g Thinsulate insulation will keep your toes toasty, and the waterproof leather and UltraDry upper keeps water out while still allowing sweat to escape.

The Coldspark ($140) also proved grippy through a variety of conditions including mud, muck, and snowpack. There was some slippage in extremely icy conditions, but overall we were happy with the traction. At 1 pound 14 ounces for the pair, they’re not ultralight, but they’re about as streamlined as a winter hiking boot gets.

Check Price at AmazonCheck Price at Backcountry

KEEN Revel IV Winter Hiking Boot

Keen Revel Winter Hiking Boot

Anyone with wider feet will appreciate these winter-ready hikers ($170). KEEN is known for having a roomier toebox, and these are no exception.

More than that, they’re ready to take on snow, sleet, and whatever Mother Nature serves up. The waterproof membrane keeps feet dry through surprise stream crossings and everyday winter muck. And the 200 g of insulation kept our feet plenty warm (while hiking) in temps as low as 7 degrees F.

The tread isn’t extremely aggressive, but we never had any slipping. It also makes these a more comfortable crossover for walking the dog or running errands around town.

They also have some great features for getting outdoors. The metal gaiter loop on the toe means you can easily hike in deeper snow. And the rubber protection on the heel integrates well with snowshoes. And, like all KEEN boots, they have a large rubber toe bumper to protect toes and increase durability.

Check Price at BackcountryCheck Price at REI

Women’s Snow Boots

From fluffy snow flurries to blizzards, windblown drifts, and slippery icepack, snow boots are a necessity in many places. They offer insulation, traction, and comfort on even the coldest days. Whether commuting across town, completing chores at home, or heading outdoors to play, there’s a snow boot for you.

Kamik Snowgem Winter Boot

Kamik Snowgem Winter Boots

These waterproof, insulated boots ($120) will keep you plenty warm and dry on wet winter days. The 200 g of insulation kept our toes warm while walking the dog and shoveling the driveway. These are rated to -40 degrees F; we tested them in several zero-degree days and never had any issues.

The fleece lining adds warmth and does a good job wicking moisture if your feet overheat. We found they fit true to size, but if you prefer to wear extra-thick socks, you may want to go up a half size.

And if you’re looking for an even more budget-friendly winter boot, check out the Kamik Momentum Snow Boot (starting at $60). It’s not quite as warm as the Snowgem, but it’s a great value.

Check Price at AmazonCheck Price at REI

Bogs Arcata Knit Snow Boot

BOGS Arcata Knit Women's Snow Boot

I had one pair of boots while motorcycle camping across North America, and they were Bogs. I can attest to their long-term comfort and impressive durability. The 100% waterproof Arcat Knit boots ($160) will keep you dry through the wettest conditions, and the 7mm Neo-Tech insulation provides plenty of warmth, with a comfort rating of -58 degrees F.

I found they have great traction in wet, snowy conditions, and I especially appreciate the convenient pull-on handles. The laces are adjustable for a custom fit. And once set, I’ve found you can easily just slide them on and off.

Best of all, these clean up great and are super durable. I’ve used these daily for several months now, and they look and feel as good as they did on Day One. Strong traction, easy on and off, and a durable design are the reasons these make one of the best women’s winter boots around.

Check Price at REI

Columbia Minx Shorty III Snow Boot

Columbia Minx Shorty III Snow Boot

 

Looking for a light, flexible boot? Then you need to meet the Minx Shorty ($100). Weighing in at 1 pound 6 ounces (for the pair), they won’t weigh you down. Yet the 200g insulation and Omni-Heat reflective lining keep feet warm while adventuring outdoors.

The sole doesn’t have extreme traction, but we never slipped while hiking on snow-packed ground or crossing the icy driveway. If you fully submerse your feet, water can leak in, but feet will stay dry during regular winter wear.

One caveat is that deep snow can sneak in the lower-height top. If you regularly venture out in deep snow, the taller Columbia Mid Minx III may be a better option.

Check Price at REI

Muck Boots Arctic Ice Tall

Muck Boots Arctic Ice Tall

Do you find yourself battling ice on the regular? The Muck Boots Arctic Ice Tall ($190) could become your new best friend. The 8mm interior neoprene bootie keeps toes toasty. And the EVA midsole is comfortable and supportive. These boots are on the heavier end of the spectrum. But the durability can’t be beat.

Where they really shine, though, is on icy hardpack. The Vibram Arctic Grip outsole is true to its name and delivers excellent traction. We’ve spent weeks feeding animals and completing chores in all manner of mud, slop, and ice. And through it all, stability and traction have never been concerns.

Check Price at Amazon

OOFOS OOmg Boot

The Women's OOMG Boot from OOFOS is a super light recovery snow boot.

Calling all runners and comfort-seekers: These boots are like a warm hug for your feet. Runners and endurance athletes have long been singing the praises of recovery sandals, and now you can enjoy that same technology in a boot. The OOfoam technology absorbs 37% more impact than other shoes, which in turn lessens the stress on your feet, knees, and back.

If you spend a lot of time pounding the pavement, walking to work, or strolling with the dog, the OOmg Boot ($200) will do your feet good. They will soak through if you stand around in a puddle, but they hold up great through normal winter use. And for every pair sold, the brand donates 3% to cancer research.

Check Price at OOFOS

Merrell Haven Mid Snow Boot

Merrell Haven Mid Snow Boot

 

Sometimes you need a winter option that skirts the line between stylish and snow boot. The Merrell Haven ($150) does just that. The 100g insulation adds warmth without extra bulk. They provide just enough traction for slippery conditions but are also comfortable on city streets and sidewalks.

The 4.8-inch height is enough to keep ankles warm and dry, but they aren’t the best bet for tromping through deep snow. If you have high arches, you may notice a bit of pressure on the top of your foot. After a few wears, though, they broke in, and comfort increased. This is a great snow boot for winter commutes and city pursuits.

Check Price at Backcountry

Sorel Joan of Arctic Insulated Boot

Sorel Joan of Arctic Tall Fur-Trimmed Women's Snow Boot

There’s just something about the Sorel Joan of Arctic ($210) that makes you hope for a blizzard. The waterproof suede upper provides protection as you march through snowdrifts, the seam-sealed waterproof lower keeps you dry even in the wettest conditions, and the faux fur trim adds a fun bit of flair. At times they can feel heavy on your feet, but it’s a worthy trade-off for sturdy, stylish snow boots.

And if you do get a pair, remember the tabs on the sides are not meant for pulling the boot on, but for removing the liner to clean. Save yourself tears over busted boots and avoid yanking on the tabs. Instead, place the boot on solid ground, loosen the laces as needed, and use your body weight to help slide your foot in. Now you’re ready for a winter wonderland.

Check Price at BackcountryCheck Price at REI

Warmest Winter Boots

Whether spending hours around the ice-fishing hole, trekking miles across Antarctica, or simply desiring extra-toasty feet while shoveling the driveway, these are some of the best, super-warm women’s winter boots.

Sorel Glacier XT Warm Winter Boots

Sorel Glacier XT Boot for women

This boot is ready for the most extreme conditions. If you hate the feeling of clomping around in boots, look elsewhere. These big ol’ boots ($180) are large and in charge. But what they lack in sleek design they make up for in warmth and comfort.

The knee-high fit keeps snow out, and the rubber outsole keeps feet dry in even the sloppiest of conditions. Most of all, this boot is designed to keep warmth in.

With a thick felt liner, a removable 13mm insole, and Omni-Heat reflective lining, they come with a comfort rating of -100 degrees F. Depending on your preferred sock thickness, go up a half or whole size for a comfortable fit.

Check Price at Backcountry

Baffin Icefield Insulated Boot

Baffin Icefield Boots

These beasts have a comfort rating of -148 degrees F. Yes, you read that right: -148. Part of the Arctic line, they’re designed for extreme conditions. Totally waterproof and complete with a seven-layer inner boot system, these snow boots ($169) are ready for your next extreme winter adventure.

The cinchable top keeps snow out, and they provide plenty of traction in slippery conditions. They’re not light or sleek, but they are warm. If cold feet are your problem, these could be the answer you’ve been looking for. They run small, so we recommend sizing up.

Check Price at Amazon

Stylish Winter Boots

Gone are the days when you had to choose between functional and fashionable winter boots. Thanks to the convergence of technical performance and designer style, it’s possible to pick a boot that works hard and looks good doing it. From tall boots to ultralight, packable boots, we’ve found the best styles that will still keep you warm, dry, and happy.

ECCO Sartorelle Buckle Boot

ECCO Tall Winter Boots

A great pair of leather boots will last for years. And these are excellent. The full-grain leather is strong yet supple and can be polished should the boots get scuffed.

And ECCO’s “freedom fit” means a roomier toebox — so no more squished toes. We were impressed that they were comfortable straight out of the box. I’ve walked through giant puddles, navigated snowy streets, and trekked through various cities in these. Through it all, they’ve kept my feet dry and comfortable.

The traction is suitable for urban winter outings but not meant for extreme use. And it’s worth mentioning that these aren’t insulated, so toes may get cold on the truly frigid days.

But if you’re looking for a good-looking, hard-working tall boot, these could be the answer to your winter boot prayers. Yes, they’re an investment at $250, but they’re worth it considering you’ll easily get 5 years out of them.

Check Price at Amazon

KEEN Elena Mid Boot

KEEN Elena Mid Boot

 

Can’t decide between a winter boot and sneaker? Luckily, you don’t have to with the Elena Mid ($140). The waterproof leather keeps feet dry, and the insulation makes these boots rated to -4 degrees F.

The rubber toe bumper protects feet and adds an extra dose of durability. Most impressively, these have great traction. They look like a flat sneaker, but the rubber soles and unique pattern kept us upright on ice-laden commutes. We went up a half size, and the fit is perfect with a pair of midweight wool socks.

Check Price at REI

OluKai Pehuea Hulu

OluKai Pehuea Hulu

 

Are your winters mild and dry? If you call a warm climate like Southern California, Arizona, or Hawaii home, these will soon become your favorite boots. The Pehuea Hulu ($160) feel like slippers but work like boots. The full-grain leather ages well and is super durable. And the shearling liner is cozy and naturally wicks sweat.

The wool footbed is warm, comfortable, and helps regulate odor and temperature. And it’s easily removable if you prefer a specific insole. Plus, we really like that the side zipper makes for easy on and off. While not technically waterproof — check out the Manu Hope ($150) for that — we logged many days walking on packed snow without any issues.

Check Price at Amazon

Birkenstock Bakki Shearling

Birkenstock Bakki Shearling Boots

Anyone who loves their Birkenstock sandals will be excited to know the brand makes boots. Made with the same cork bed, these boots ($190) offer the same support and durability as your favorite sandals.

If you’ve never worn Birkenstocks, be forewarned that they take some getting used to. They cork footbed is contoured and supportive. They have a short break-in period, but the comfort is unsurpassed once molded to your foot.

These booties have a soft shearling lining that keeps feet warm and dry. They slide on easily and work just as well with jeans or leggings. For a more traditional snowboot design, check out the Birkenstock Woodbury Boot ($229).

Check Price at Amazon

Frye Carson Piping Bootie

Frye Carson Bootie for Women

The perfect bootie works with pants or a skirt and lasts for years. And dare we say, the Frye Carson Piping Bootie ($258) checks all these boxes and more. The waxed leather has the high-quality finish you expect from Frye.

And while these do have a slight heel, they’re incredibly comfortable for all-day use. The zipper makes taking them on and off a bit easier, though we did have to wiggle a bit extra to get our foot in on the first try. The supple leather lining feels great, and these were comfortable straight out of the box, which is quite surprising for a sturdy leather boot.

I regularly wore a single pair of Frye Boots for nearly a decade, and while the patina changed over time, they continued to work great and look stylish.

Check Price at Amazon

Women’s Winter Rain Boots

If your winter conditions tend to be rainy and wet (hello, Pacific Northwest), then a good pair of rain boots is in order. From the classic to the stylish, these top winter rain boots will keep you dry all season long.

Bogs Classic Casual Lace Leather Boot

Bogs Classic Casual Duck Boot

Looking for a modern take on the classic duck boot? Then you need to meet the Bogs Classic Casual ($120). They are fully waterproof and ready for puddle jumping and rainy-day walking. The lace-up style allows for a secure, custom fit. And the modern details prove rather stylish. I have received numerous compliments while tromping about in these boots.

Toes may get cold in extremely frigid weather as these are not heavily insulated. But for wet temps above 15 degrees F, we found the Neo-Tech insulation plenty warm. And the rebound footbed is cushioned and supportive for all-day wear. All in all, these are comfortable out of the box, stylish, and our favorite winter rain boot.

Check Price at Backcountry Check Price at Amazon

Hunter Original Wellington Rain Boots

Hunter Original Rain Boots for Women

These boots ($150) have a simple design and an avid cult following. The vulcanized rubber is fully waterproof. Hunter boots are built on orthopedic lasts, and fans rave about the comfort. They’re only available in full sizes, so true half-sizers may have a hard time getting a perfect fit.

The nylon lining wicks moisture well. And the natural rubber outsole is adequate for most city conditions. But for truly slippery or icy conditions, these are not our top pick.

The 15-inch height offers enough coverage for nearly any rainy or snowy conditions. It’s also worth noting that the overall circumference makes for a snug fit. If you have larger, athletic calves, fit may be an issue.

Check Price at REICheck Price at Amazon

Muck Boots Liberty Ankle Waterproof Boot

Muck Boots Liberty Ankle Rain Boot for Women

Muck Boots is known for making stall-worthy rubber boots, but did you know it also makes fashionable, winter-worthy boots? Well, now you do.

The Waterproof Liberty Ankle Boot ($125) bridges the gap perfectly between style and function. The neoprene lining makes for a flexible, comfortable fit. As does the neoprene ankle collar and tongue.

These have a slight heel, but we found them comfortable for all-day use. And after kicking through mud and muck, we were pleased with how easily they cleaned up. If you want a boot that looks ready for the city but can stand up to life on the farm, these are it.

And if you want the same hardworking function in a classic leather boot, be sure to check out the Muck Boots Waterproof Chelsea.

Check Price at Amazon

Xtratuf Salmon Sisters Boots

XtraTuf Salmon Sisters Rain Boots for Women

If you’re after an ultra-durable rain boot, Xtratufs like these ($135) are the way to go. Alaskan fishers love them, and so will you.

As our reviewer noted, “Triple-dipped latex neoprene sets the foundation for these boots. Coupled with a nonskid, nonmarking chevron sole, it feels incredibly solid in slick situations. It’s really a simple make.

“The smart team-up with Alaska’s Salmon Sisters did add one admittedly adorable feature to these boots: the interior print.”

Check Price at REI

How to Choose a Winter Boot

A boot that’s perfect in one scenario may be miserable in another. So before you invest in winter boots, take a moment to consider how you’ll use them. Here are a few things to help when choosing a winter boot:

  1. Do you need a waterproof boot? Will you often be wearing the boots in rainy, wet conditions? Is slushy snow a common occurrence? Waterproof is great, but it often comes at the cost of breathability and excessive heat retention. It can be worth it, but if you live in a milder climate, water-resistant may prove a better fit.
  2. Does tread matter? These days, shoe sole technology is a science all its own and can truly make or break the shoe. If you find yourself walking and hiking in icy conditions, pay special attention to the tread grip and look for one designed for ice.
  3. What’s up with liners? Many boots have replaced the liner with insulation directly in the boot. The benefit of the liner is you can remove it and set it out to dry between uses. The downside is liners can sometimes cause extra movement and friction, which can lead to blisters and discomfort.
  4. Which boot height is best? The main considerations with height are ankle articulation, keeping snow out, and, in some cases, fashion. If you regularly get out in deep snow and want a lot of support, choose a taller boot.

FAQ

What Are the Best Winter Boots for Walking?

There are a few important things to consider. First are the overall weight and fit. A super-heavy boot will quickly become tiresome. And one that’s too loose will rub and cause blisters.

On the other hand, a slightly taller boot may be worth the weight, as it offers extra ankle support. Consider where you’ll be walking and your personal preference for high or low designs.

Second, good traction is a key consideration. Icy, slick conditions are a common winter occurrence. And you don’t want to spend your time outdoors worrying about slipping. The Oboz Bridger is a great winter hiking boot for walking. It offers ankle support, excellent traction, and just enough warmth.

If you’re looking for a more classic winter boot style, the Bogs Arcata Knit is extra-warm and cozy, but it does weigh a bit more.

Who Makes the Best Winter Boots?

The best winter boot is subjective and depends on your needs. KEEN, Merrell, and Oboz all make an excellent winter hiking boot for women. If you need a classic snow boot, the Kamik Snowgem is comfortable, warm, and easy on the wallet. For a stylish leather option, the ECCO Knee High Boot and Frye Bootie can’t be beat.

What Are the Best Boots for Snow and Ice?

If you find yourself regularly heading out in icy conditions, we recommend the Muck Boots Arctic Ice Tall. The Vibram Arctic Grip outsole is true to its name and delivers excellent traction. And the 15-inch height keeps out snow.

Which Brand of Winter Boots Are the Warmest?

For truly frigid conditions, you need a burly, super-warm boot. The Sorel Glacier XT Boots have a comfort rating of -100 degrees F. And the Baffin Icefield Insulated Boots will keep you cozy down to -148 degrees F. Pair them with some extra-warm winter gloves, and you’ll be ready for whatever winter serves up.


Have a favorite winter boot we missed? Let us know in the comments below for future updates to this article. 


Topo Designs Mountain Shirt Best Women's Flannel
The Best Women's Flannel Shirts of 2020

Flannels are the unofficial cold-weather uniform of the outdoors. Suit up with picks that span the gamut from performance to fashion. Read more…

Best Women's Fleece
Best Fleece Jackets for Women in 2020

We tested the best fleece jackets for women in 2020, including top picks from Patagonia, Mammut, REI, Voormi, and more. Read more…

The Best Down Jackets for Women
The Best Women's Down Jackets of 2020

We found the best women's down jackets for every budget and activity. From a do-all hoodie to a budget-friendly puffy, we've got you covered. Read more…