Three best men’s snow boots

Peter McPherson

The Mayans used latex from rubber trees to make the first known rubber “boots” over 3,000 years ago.

For working or playing outdoors in cold weather, a reliable and comfortable pair of snow boots is an important consideration. Tall or short shaft, aggressive or shallow lugs, lightweight or heavy -- these are all features that will fare better or worse in different situations.

There is no ideal snow boot. When shopping, ask yourself a few questions to narrow your search. What are the primary activities you'll need your boots for? How cold does your region get? Will you need boots for daily wear or work? Will you wear them indoors as well as outdoors? These factors are key to finding the best pair of snow boots for your needs.

Considerations when choosing men's snow boots

Thermal protection: You should have an idea of the temperature range in which you'll wear your boots. A reflective lining, thermal sole, and tall shaft all contribute to a boot's ability to protect you from cold.

If you're looking for something to wear while shoveling snow in mild weather, you probably won't want boots rated for -40°F because they could become uncomfortably warm. Of course, if you wear boots rated for 0°F in much colder weather, don't be surprised if the chill overpowers the linings.

Water resistance: Hiking in heavy snow and wading through puddles are two good reasons to have boots with reliable waterproofing or water resistance. "Fully waterproof" is a common claim. Pay attention to features like seam-sealed waterproofing or solid rubber shells for the best waterproof protection.

Laced or slip-on: Most boots lace up for a snug and secure fit. Laced boots are often more reliable and comfortable if you're wearing them for long periods.

Slip-on boots offer convenience and can be quite comfortable, too. In most cases, they have handles or pull tabs to make it easier to get your feet in, though some shorter boots are easy enough to slip on without pull tabs. If you need a pair of boots to put on quickly and use for short periods of time, slip-ons might be best for you.

Snow boot prices: Affordable snow boots cost anywhere from $20 to $40, though you'll want to review their materials and durability because some cheaper boots may not hold up under all conditions. In the $50 to $90 range are higher-quality boots by trusted brands that work well for everyday use. Boots that cost $100 and more are usually designed either for outdoor work or extreme winter conditions.


Q. Are boot liners replaceable?

A. Not always. Many boots have built-in liners, and some have no liners at all. If your boots have removable liners, you'll want to purchase replacements from the same brand if possible or the liners may not fit.

Q. How do I keep my boots in good condition?

A. Keeping them dry and clean is the key to lengthening the lifetime of your boots. If they do get wet, clean them first with a bit of soap and water. Then towel off the outside of the boots and stuff balled-up newspaper inside. It could take as long as 48 hours for the boots to dry completely.

Men's snow boots we recommend

Best of the best: Columbia Men's Bugaboot Plus III Omni Cold-Weather Boot

Our take: Rugged boots that will keep feet warm and safe in any weather.

What we like: Seven-inch boots provide waterproof protection. Tough rubber outsoles for excellent traction. Heat-reflective liners keep you warm in the coldest conditions.

What we dislike: Might need breaking in. A few reports of flaws in waterproofing seal.

Best bang for your buck: Dream Pairs Men's Insulated Waterproof Winter Snow Boots

Our take: Excellent budget boots that can handle tough conditions.

What we like: True to their -25°F claim. Boots hold up well even after hours in the snow. Rubber outsoles provide great grip. Sturdy overall construction.

What we dislike: A bit heavier than most. Sizing may not be accurate.

Choice 3: Muck Boot Arctic Sport Rubber High-Performance Men's Winter Boot

Our take: Consider these waterproof boots if thorough protection and durability are high on your list.

What we like: Eleven-inch shaft keeps out cold and snow. Thermal footbed lining offers protection down to -40°F.

What we dislike: Shaft a bit snug for some. Durable, but may not be comfortable for everyone.

Peter McPherson is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.

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