3 tips for finding the best winter boots for your lifestyle

October 8, 2015

Whether you’re a winter weather enthusiast, a courageous commuter or someone who works outside for a living, Canada's frigid winters make a good set of boots a must.  If you're looking for new winter boots, there are a ton of options to suit your needs if you know what to look for. Here are three hints to help you decide.

3 tips for finding the best winter boots for your lifestyle

1. Figure out how you'll use them

To know which type of winter boots to choose, first start by understanding how you plan to use them.

  • If you commute each day by public transportation, consider a knee-height boot that will keep you warm and dry.
  • If you just go from your house to the car, consider getting a pair of ankle-height waterproof boots made of neoprene or leather. They're practical for wearing instead of your office shoes to cope with unexpected puddles. In a pinch, you can also go to the meeting room, trouble-free.

2. Pick a style to handle winter's worst

If you want to enjoy the best of nature while you're up at the cottage or you're planning a weekend hike in the country, your best bet is to be fully prepared for the worst nature has to offer. That means picking a boot that can handle extreme weather conditions, including such things as:

  • Slushy snow and sudden temperature changes; extended periods of low temperatures, slippery surfaces and deep snow drifts.

In this case, you’ll want to look for boots that go at least mid-calf or higher, to make sure you’re prepared for whatever nature throws at you.

  • Many boots made for outdoor buffs like backcountry hikers, snowboarders and snowshoe enthusiasts may look excessive, but they have the features you’ll need for a weekend in the country.
  • These include waterproof uppers and double-sealed stitching at key stress points, to ensure maximum durability and dryness.
  • Some boots in this snowy seasonal style include drawstring closures to help ensure snow doesn't flow into the boots should you suddenly encounter a drift deeper than it looks.

For this kind of a rugged boot you may have to forego fashion for functionality. But better to have warm, dry feet than frozen, wet toes.

3. Consider your day job

If your career requires you to brave the outdoors when most people would rather be huddled around the hearth, sturdy winter boots should be considered among some of your most important tools.

  • Solid treads will help you keep your footing on treacherous construction sites, dangerous back roads and slick city sidewalks.
  • Look for boots with treads that remind you of knobbly motorcycle tires to help ensure you maintain a firm footing no matter the angle you’re traversing.
  • Search for boots with waterproofing across the upper part and behind the lace eyelets. This helps to make sure you don’t get any snowy seepage if you’ll be braving the elements for long periods.
  • Lastly, choose boots with ample insulation that also ride high enough to cover your leg up to mid-calf. This will keep you better protected and insulated against bitter winds.

If every pair of boots came with a plane ticket to Florida, we wouldn’t need to prepare for winter as we do. That's why when it comes to choosing winter boots, it's essential to pick the right pair to help keep your feet and calves both warm and dry, but that suit your lifestyle needs, too.

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