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The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023

From cold-weather hikers to stylish waterproof boots, we’ve got your feet covered with our list of the best winter boots for women.

Columbia Heavenly women's winter boots tall heightTesting women's winter boots on packed snow and ice in Western Colorado; (photo/Eric Phillips)
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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 winter hiking boots, snow boots, extra-warm boots, stylish winter boots, and women’s rain boots. Some boots are plenty versatile enough for multiple activities, while others are specialized.

Our list is quite comprehensive. If you need more help deciding, be sure to check out our buyer’s guide at the end of our review to unravel just how to choose the best winter boot. Also, check out our comparison chart to see how our choices stack up against one another, and our FAQ section for any lingering questions.

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.

Scroll through to see all of our recommended buys in the categories below:

The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023

Best Overall Women’s Winter Boots

Oboz Bridger 7″ Insulated Winter Boots


  • Weight 2 lbs., 9 oz. per pair
  • Insulation Yes, 200 g
  • Waterproofing Oboz B-Dry membrane
  • Outsole Winterized rubber
  • Boot Height 7"
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Well insulated
  • Durable
  • reliable traction on a variety of surfaces


  • A bit heavy
Best Budget Women’s Winter Boots

Merrell Thermo Chill Mid Waterproof Boots


  • Weight 1 lb., 14 oz.
  • Insulation Yes, 200 g synthetic
  • Waterproofing Yes
  • Outsole Rubber, 5 mm lugs
  • Boot Height 6″
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Reasonably priced
  • Effective rock protection in the toe
  • Great waterproofing


  • Not the best traction
Runner-Up Best Women's Winter Boot

KEEN Women’s Revel IV Mid Polar Boots


  • Weight 2 lbs., 4 oz. per pair
  • Insulation KEEN.WARM PET fibers, rated to -25 F
  • Waterproofing KEEN.Dry membrane
  • Outsole KEEN Polar Traction rubber
  • Boot Height 6″
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Ideal for wider feet
  • Warm
  • Durable soles


  • Toe box shape isn’t for everyone
Most Stylish Women's Winter Boots

Columbia Women’s Heavenly Omni-Heat Waterproof Boot


  • Weight 13.8 oz. per shoe (size 7.5)
  • Insulation Yes, 200 g
  • Waterproofing Yes
  • Outsole Non-marking rubber
  • Boot Height 8.5″
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Good value
  • Stylish
  • Durable


  • Not the best fit for wider feet
Best Women's Boots for Heavy Snow

Baffin Icefield Insulated Boot


  • Weight 4 lbs.
  • Insulation Yes, B-Tek Heat hollow-fiber synthetic insulation
  • Waterproofing Yes, B-Tek waterproofing
  • Outsole Polar rubber outsole
  • Boot Height 7″
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Well-suited for extreme temps
  • Great traction


  • Heavy
Best Women's Winter Rain Boots

Hunter Original Wellington Rain Boots


  • Weight Unknown
  • Insulation None
  • Waterproofing Fully waterproof vulcanized rubber
  • Outsole Original “calendared” high-traction outsole
  • Boot Height 15″
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Completely waterproof
  • Tall enough for deep snow
  • Nice styling


  • Not the grippiest outsole

Best of the Rest

Vasque Women’s Coldspark UltraDry Snow Boot


  • Weight 1 lb., 14 oz.
  • Insulation 200 g insulation
  • Waterproofing Yes, waterproof leather and waterproof membrane
  • Outsole ColdHold rubber
  • Boot Height 7″
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Good for rugged hiking trails
  • Quite breathable for a shoe with a waterproof membrane
  • Warm


  • Some slippage on icy surfaces

Oboz Sphinx 9-Inch Insulated Boot


  • Weight 2 lbs., 2 oz.
  • Insulation 200 g, PrimaLoft Bio with recycled fibers
  • Waterproofing Oboz B-Dry membrane
  • Outsole Vibram Arctic grip rubber
  • Boot Height 4-5″
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Durable upper
  • Sleep styling
  • Effective lacing system


  • Shorter cut isn’t ideal for deep snow

Sperry Maritime Repel Snow Boots


  • Weight Unknown
  • Insulation Yes, 200 g
  • Waterproofing Rubber, waterproof leather
  • Outsole Lugged rubber
  • Boot Height 6″ (1.25″ heel)
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Good value
  • Timeless styling
  • Durable outsole


  • Flimsy laces

Danner Women’s Mountain 600 Boot Insulated


  • Weight 1 lb., 14 oz per pair
  • Insulation Yes, 200 g PrimaLoft
  • Waterproofing Yes, DannerDry membrane
  • Outsole Vibram Arctic Grip
  • Boot Height 4.5″
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Sturdy
  • Warm
  • Comfortable


  • Ankle cut is a little low for deep snow

Bogs Women’s Classic Casual Lace Leather Boot


  • Weight 2.9 lbs. per pair
  • Insulation Yes
  • Waterproofing Yes, Neo-Tech
  • Outsole Rubber (type unknown)
  • Boot Height 5″
The Best Winter Boots for Women of 2023


  • Comfortable
  • Minimal break-in required
  • Stylish


  • Not the warmest

Women’s Winter Boots Comparison Chart

Winter BootsPriceInsulationWaterproofingOutsoleHeight
Oboz Bridger 7″
Insulated Winter Boots
$200200 gYesWinterized rubber7″
Winter Hiking Boot
$190KEEN.WARM PET fibersYesKEEN Polar Traction rubber6″
Merrell Thermo Chill
Mid Waterproof Boots
$120200 g syntheticYesRubber6″
Columbia Heavenly Omni-Heat
Waterproof Boot
$140200 gYesNon-marking rubber8.5″
Baffin Icefield Insulated Boot$220Synthetic, unknown fillYesPolar rubber outsole7″
Hunter Original Wellington
Rain Boots
$130-139200 gYesColdHold rubber7″
Vasque Coldspark
UltraDry Snow Boot
$160200 gYesColdHold rubber7″
Oboz Sphinx 9-Inch
Insulated Boot
$195200 gYesVibram Arctic Grip rubber4-5″
Sperry Maritime Repel
Snow Boots
$129200 gYesN/A6″
Danner Mountain 600
Boot Insulated
$190200 gYesVibram Arctic Grip4.5″
Bogs Classic Casual
Lace Leather Boot

Why You Should Trust Us

We have many editors and gear tester that live in cold winter climates, so we put these boots to the test in an array of snowy, icy, and wintry conditions over several seasons — everything from light snow to heavy blizzards. We also tested them during a variety of activities — walking, snowshoeing, hiking, shoveling snow, and more.

One of our lead testers put in over 500 testing hours to find the best winter boots for women. The top picks are a culmination of the best boots in terms of quality, traction, warmth, and durability. We made sure to include a variety of boot heights and styles to ensure that everyone can find what suits their needs (and winter climate) best.

Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose a Winter Boot

sphinx view
Testing boots in a field of snow outside of Crested Butte, Colorado; (photo/Eric Phillips)

Winter boots come in all sorts of shapes and styles. As our list of recommendations demonstrates, the winter boot market contains everything from extreme weather work boots to stylish formal footwear. With so many options, it can feel daunting to sift through the pile and select the perfect pair.

When choosing the best winter boots for you, it’s important to understand some of the key factors that differentiate one pair from the next. In this comprehensive buyer’s guide, we thoroughly explain each of these factors to help you make a confident and informed choice.

Temperature Ratings

Any winter footwear worth its weight will offer plentiful warmth. Many winter boots come with a specific temperature rating. While these ratings can be helpful guidelines, the actual feel of a pair of boots will always be a better indicator of warmth than a manufacturer’s rating.

Often, boots claim to have very impressive temperature ratings well below zero. Because there is no standardized test for boot temperature ratings, always take these numbers with a grain of salt. The warmth of a boot comes from various factors, including sock thickness, activity level, personal cold tolerance, and much more.

columbia heavenly omni heat
A little faux fur can make a boot look cozy, but it’s the insulation inside that counts; (photo/Eric Phillips)

A winter boot rated to -10 will likely feel warmer than a boot rated to zero made by the same manufacturer. Using temperature ratings to compare boots from different manufacturers is a less reliable practice. We certainly recommend trying boots on to get a real impression of their warmth and comfort.

Insulation Type

Winter boots utilize a variety of different insulation types to achieve the desired combination of warmth and comfort. The most common types of insulation are synthetic, felt, and sheepskin.


Most modern winter boots are equipped with synthetic insulation. Between the outer shell and the inner lining of the boot, synthetic materials provide lightweight and durable warmth. Perhaps the most important benefit of synthetic material is that it can insulate even when wet.

Popular name-brand synthetic insulation options include Thinsulate and PrimaLoft, though many other quality options are available. No matter the name brand, the total weight of synthetic insulation will always be a better indicator of warmth than the name brand.

Many manufacturers include the insulation weight in their boot specifications. Lightweight to midweight boots will usually have a fill rating between 200 and 400 g. If you are seeking heavy-duty boots for extreme cold, look for a fill rating of at least 300 g.

Testing a pair of Sorel Joan boots after fresh snowfall; (photo/Mary Murphy)

Felt and Sheepskin

Felt and sheepskin are materials that have long been used to insulate winter footwear. While synthetic insulation is by far the current norm, some manufacturers opt for classic and traditional materials.

The downside of felt and sheepskin insulation is they tend to be heavy and bulky. Still, these materials can be warm and comfortable.

Usually, felt and sheepskin is utilized in a boot’s lining where they can be in direct contact with the foot. While these materials provide warmth even when wet, they may become extra heavy when saturated and require lots of time to dry.


As you might expect, heavier boots are usually built for the worst conditions, while lightweight winter boots are better for moderate temperatures and less demanding uses. As the thickness of outsoles and the fill rating of insulation increases, overall weight goes up. Lightweight winter boots are great for active use, but they often sacrifice some stability, grip, and warmth.

Boot Height

Almost all winter boots are ankle-high or higher. Boot height is a major factor that determines the intended function of the boot.

Lower-cut boots are typically around 7 inches from the footbed to the top of the boot. Lower-cut boots are ideal for hiking, as they tend to be relatively light and flexible. The downside of lower-cut boots is they allow snow to seep in, especially when post-holing through deep snowpack. If you find yourself in bottomless snow with a pair of ankle-high boots, a pair of gaiters may offer a simple solution.

If you plan to use your boots in regions with lots of snow accumulation, you’ll probably want to pick boots at least 8 inches tall. Work boots and boots for extreme weather are designed to sit higher on the leg, keeping the elements out and the warmth in.


Nothing beats a reliable pair of boots that keep your feet warm and dry no matter how bad the weather gets. Waterproofing is the difference between blissful comfort and soggy misery.

Waterproofing is ultimately a product of the materials incorporated into a boot’s design. Features such as rubber outer layers and an exterior water-resistant treatment are standards of most waterproof boots.

All of the boots we’ve selected are designed to keep water out as much as possible. Some of the more robust included models feature a two-piece system that includes an outer waterproof barrier and an inner removable liner.

One-piece boots typically feature a waterproof membrane sandwiched in between the outer material and the lining. While one-piece boots usually don’t have the fail-proof waterproofing of many two-piece styles, they tend to be lighter and more flexible.


The downside of built-in insulation and waterproof membranes is decreased breathability. While boots that trap heat are certainly desirable, overheating can be a real concern, even in extremely cold weather. For this reason, a reasonable degree of breathability is an asset in winter boots.

Generally, lightweight hiking-style winter boots are more breathable than heavy-duty work boots or two-piece models that thrive in extreme cold. While hiking or performing other strenuous activities, breathability can help to prevent sweating and blisters.

Ultimately, breathability is a trade-off. Winter boots simply cannot be completely waterproof and extreme weather-ready and fully breathable at the same time. If you’re simply looking for top-notch warmth or waterproofing, breathability doesn’t need to be a major consideration when selecting boots. If you plan to wear your boots for active use in a wide range of conditions, be sure to select a breathable pair.

Outer Material

A winter boot’s exterior material will significantly affect its waterproofing, breathability, and weight. Rubber and leather are the most common outer materials.

oboz sphinx testing
A leather upper with ripstop textile upper on the tongue insert on the Oboz Sphinx boot; (photo/Eric Phillips)


The waterproof qualities of rubber boots are unbeatable. For decades, brands including Muck Boot and XTRATUF have been well-regarded for their nearly impenetrable rubber boots. In constantly wet and rainy regions such as the Pacific Northwest, rubber boots are a rightfully popular choice.

The downside of rubber as an outer material is its lack of breathability. In the same way rubber boots successfully keep moisture out, they also keep moisture in. For long hikes and active use, rubber is not the ideal outer material.


Leather boots have been a popular winter footwear choice for hundreds of years. While leather does not provide the impenetrable qualities of rubber, it is a supple, durable, and relatively water-resistant material.

Compared to rubber boots, leather models tend to breathe slightly better. If you plan to wear your boots in a wide range of weather conditions, leather boots are an excellent versatile choice.

Outsoles and Grip

The outsole is the part of a boot that makes direct contact with the ground underneath. Good grip is essential to a winter boot’s value and performance.

True winter boots come with outsoles designed to provide reliable grip in cold and snowy conditions. To account for subfreezing temps, many winter boot outsoles feature soft rubber compounds that don’t overly harden in the cold. Additionally, thoughtfully designed tread patterns can prevent snow and mud from building up.

Outsole compounds and tread patterns vary wildly across the winter boot market. Generally, models geared toward hiking will have a deep tread and superior grip. Work boots typically come with heavy, bulky outsoles that prioritize durability above grip.

In severe conditions, you may want more winter traction than your boots can offer on their own. No matter how deep and sticky your tread is, chances are it won’t help on solid sheets of ice.

Traction devices such as Yaktrax and MICROspikes can be fixed onto the bottom of winter boots for improved grip on ice and hardpack. These devices have metal components designed to dig into ice and improve traction — just like tire chains on a car.

GearJunkie gear testers Morgan Tilton and Mary Murphy testing women’s winter boots on a frigid morning; (photo/Eric Phillips)

Fit and Sizing

Properly sizing winter boots can be a tricky process. Unlike with most footwear, you’ll likely wear extra thick socks with your winter boots, and it’s important to consider this when picking a size.

Ideally, your winter boots will be comfortable and free of major air pockets and hot spots. Of course, the best fit for you depends on the type of activity you’re using the boots for.

If you’ll be hiking or working on your feet, we recommend a snug fit for maximum performance. If you plan to use your boots for hanging out casually or simply wearing around town, a looser comfort-first fit is the way to go.

As always, there’s no substitute for trying on boots and shoes, and we highly recommend you do so if possible.


GearJunkie contributor Morgan Tilton testing women’s winter boots; (photo/Eric Phillips)
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 and Sphinx are great winter boots for light hiking and walking. The Bridger offers ankle support, excellent traction, and just enough warmth, while the Oboz Sphinx offers more warmth.

What Are the Best Boots for Snow and Ice?

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

A more budget-friendly option for lots of prolonged use in the snow (think trudging around a ski resort, shoveling snow, hiking, or walking to work) would be the Merrell Thermo Chill Mid Boots for $120 (or less when on sale!). The Oboz Sphinx is also equipped with the Vibram Arctic Grip rubber if you want a lighter and smaller boot that’s still capable on snow.

merrell snow walking
Testing the Merrell Thermo Chill Mid on a snowy winter walk; (photo/Eric Phillips)
Who Makes the Best Winter Boots?

The best winter boot is subjective and depends on your needs. Sorel, KEEN, Merrell, and Oboz all make excellent winter hiking boots for women. For a stylish leather option, the Sperry Maritime Repel Snow Boots can’t be beaten.

Which Brand of Winter Boots Are the Warmest?

For truly frigid conditions, you need a burly, super-warm boot. The Baffin Icefield Insulated Boots have a comfort rating of -100 degrees F. And they’ll 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.

winter boot testing in town
Testing winter boots in town in 20-30 degree weather; (photo/Eric Phillips)

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