Best Women’s Winter Boots For Outdoor Adventure – Bearfoot Theory

When winter weather hits, it’s time to swap your trainers for a good pair of winter boots. Whether you’re heading out for a snowy hike, strapping on some snowshoes, or just want a pair of boots with good traction to walk your dog around the neighborhood, we’ve rounded up the best women’s winter boots that are warm, comfortable, and look great too.

If you need help shopping for your first pair, check out our buying tips at the end of this post so you can be sure you get the right pair for you.

Best Women’s Winter Boots at a Glance

Women’s Winter Boots Comparison Table

See the comparison table below for a quick summary of each of the best women’s winter boots. You can click on the columns to sort by what’s most important to you.

Oboz Sapphire 8″ Insulated Boot

Bearfoot Theory Team Favorite

Key Features

  • Height: 8″
  • Waterproof? Yes
  • Closure: Lace ties and side zipper
  • Insulation: Synthetic
  • Weight (pair): 2 lbs 4 oz
  • MSRP: $175

Check price: Backcountry

Great for: Winter hiking through snow, snowshoeing, outdoor winter work, everyday wear

Pros: Side zipper for easy on and off, warm insulation, waterproof, protective toe cap

Cons: May take a few wears to break in, not as warm as Oboz Bridger boots (see below)

I’ve been wearing my Oboz Sapphire’s as a winter boot for years and I love how versatile they are. I wear them on wintery hikes and they keep my feet nice and warm and provide great traction on icy terrain (although, I will wear microspikes if it’s especially slippery).

The uppers are made from tough leather with a waterproof finish, so my feet stay dry and cozy no matter the conditions. They’re also great for everyday winter wear like running errands in town or heading to the ski slopes.

I have narrow feet and I find that these boots fit really well. They have a side zipper for easy on and off and the insole is very supportive. I will say that they do take a few wears to break in, but once they do, they’re very comfortable!

Columbia Ice Maiden II Lace Boot

Best Budget Winter Boot

Key Features

  • Height: 9″
  • Waterproof? Yes
  • Closure: Lace ties
  • Insulation: Synthetic
  • Weight (pair): 2 lbs 0.8 oz
  • MSRP: $100

Check price: Backcountry

Columbia Ice Maiden Winter Boot

Pros: Easy to slip on and off, excellent waterproofing, very warm

Cons: Don’t provide great ankle support, minimal traction on the soles

Great for: Short and easy winter hikes, everyday wear

Getting outside in the winter doesn’t have to cost a fortune. If you’re looking for a good pair of winter boots that will keep your feet warm and dry for under $100, then check out the Columbia Ice Maidens.

These boots have a lot going for them including excellent waterproofing, easy slip-on-and-off design, cute style, and a comfortable insole. If you’re looking for a boot that will do well on short, easy winter hikes or just need something for everyday winter wear, this is a great option.

Keep in mind that it’s not a good boot for harder winter hikes or if you need something with more traction.

>> Read Next: Where to Find Discounted Outdoor Gear

Oboz Bridger 7″ Insulated Waterproof Boot

Warmest Winter Hiking Boot

Key Features

  • Height: 7″
  • Waterproof? Yes
  • Closure: Lace ties
  • Insulation: Synthetic
  • Weight (pair): 2 lbs 9 oz
  • MSRP: $200

Check price: REI | Backcountry

Oboz Bridger Insulted Hiking Boot

Pros: Great traction, very warm, available in half sizes and wide options

Cons: Uncomfortable around the ankle for some people, some reports of issues with waterproofing

Great for: winter hiking, winter camping, snowshoeing

Looking to get outside for some winter hikes this season? Make sure you have the right footwear that keeps your feet warm and gives you plenty of traction on those snowy and icy trails.

My favorite winter hiking boots are the Oboz Bridger 7″ Insulated Waterproof Boots. They have amazing traction thanks to their super grippy rubber soles and the uppers are fully waterproof to keep your feet warm and dry.

Our Bearfoot Theory team has been using these boots for years on both winter and cold-weather shoulder-season outings and can vouch for their durability, warmth, and performance. Pair them with some gaiters for extra snowy days.

Columbia Minx Shorty III

Best Lightweight Winter Boot

Key Features

  • Height: 5.5″
  • Waterproof? Yes
  • Closure: Lace-up
  • Insulation: Synthetic
  • Weight (pair): 1 lb 6 oz
  • MSRP: $110

Check price: REI | Backcountry

Columbia Minx Shorty III winter boot

Pros: Very comfortable, available in wide sizes, stylish

Cons: Minimal traction, can be hard to pull on, not good for winter hiking

Great for: Everyday casual winter wear

The Columbia Minx Shorty II Boots are a great lightweight winter boot for everyday wear whether that’s running errands in town or commuting to work. They have a stylish look and they’re available in great colors, which can be hard to find when shopping for a women’s winter boot.

Despite their lightweight constructions, these boots are warm, comfortable, and waterproof and a great choice for casual winter wear.

Blundstone Vegan Chelsea Boot

Most Stylish Winter Boot

Key Features

  • Height: 6.75″
  • Waterproof? Yes
  • Closure: Slip on
  • Insulation: Not insulated
  • Weight (pair): Not specified
  • MSRP: $210

Check price: REI | Backcountry

Blundstone Vegan winter boot

Pros: No break-in period, vegan leather, very high quality

Cons: Expensive, not insulated

Great for: Dressing up or down, casual winter wear

These Blundstone Original Vegan Chelsea Boots are a new addition to my gear closet and I absolutely love them. Not only are they vegan, so they fit into my plant-based lifestyle, but they’re also super comfortable and stylish. You can’t even tell that they’re not real leather.

They fit true to size and you can wear a thicker pair of socks with them if you need extra warmth (I recommend sizing half a size up if you know you’ll be wearing thick socks often). The ankle is fairly narrow so the cuff fits nicely over leggings or can wear them with a pair of jeans. I wore them to a concert and my feet never felt fatigued even after three hours of standing and dancing in them. They also hold up in wet weather and keep your feet dry, as you would expect with Blundstone’s legendary quality.

These boots are more for walking around town than trail boots, but if that’s what you’re looking for, they are a great, stylish option!

Bogs Arcata Tall Boot

Best Winter Boot for Traction

Key Features

  • Height: 7.9″
  • Waterproof? Yes
  • Closure: Lace up
  • Insulation: Synthetic
  • Weight (pair): 2 lbs 0.4 oz
  • MSRP: $175

Check price: REI | Backcountry

Bogs Arcata Tall winter boot

Pros: Excellent traction

Cons: None that we can find!

Great for: Exceptionally wintery conditions

If you need a winter boot with lots of traction for icy and slippery terrain, the Bogs Arcata boot is a great choice. The burly GlacialGrip slip-resistant rubber outsoles provide amazing traction whether you’re walking out to your car or tackling a snowy trail. They have a plush fleece lining for warmth and a sweat-wicking liner to keep your feet dry.

These boots are also waterproof, comfortable, and look great, too.

Bogs Whiteout Faded Winter Boot

Most Waterproof Winter Boots

Key Features

  • Height: 14″
  • Waterproof? Yes
  • Closure: Slip on
  • Insulation: Synthetic
  • Weight (pair): 3 lbs 6.3 oz
  • MSRP: $160

Check price: REI | Backcountry

Pros: Excellent grip, very warm, fully waterproof

Cons: Heavy

Great for: Cold weather outdoor work and chores, slushy/wet snowy environments

From shoveling the driveway to mucking out stalls, the Bogs Whiteout Faded Winter Boots are the perfect choice for outdoor winter work. With a 14-inch height and no laces, they’ll prevent snow or slush from getting inside and the fully waterproof exterior will keep wetness out.

If your feet get cold easily, these boots will keep them toasty warm with a fleece lining and 7 mm of neoprene waterproof insulation rated for -58 ℉.

They’re also designed with Bogs’ GlacialGrip outsoles for excellent traction.

Sorel Caribou Winter Boot

Best Classic-Style Snow Boot

Key Features

  • Height: 9″
  • Waterproof? Yes
  • Closure: Lace up
  • Insulation: Synthetic
  • Weight (pair): 3 lbs 6 oz
  • MSRP: $200

Check price: REI | Backcountry

Sorel Caribou Winter Boot

Pros: Very warm, fully waterproof

Cons: Expensive, heavy, and a bit clunky

Great for: Outdoor winter work, sledding

If your idea of the best women’s winter boot is a classic-looking style, then check out the Sorel Caribou Winter Boot. These boots have a vintage look that may bring back memories of old Christmas movies or sledding down your favorite hill as a kid.

Sorel is known for their high-quality footwear and these boots are no exception. Made with a fleece collar and removable felt lining, they’re super cozy and warm as well as fully waterproof. The lining can be fully removed from the boot to dry next to the fire after a day on the sledding hill.

Because they’re on the heavier side, these boots are not a great option for winter hiking or snowshoeing.

Uggs Adirondack III Boot

Most Comfortable Winter Boot

Key Features

  • Height: 7″
  • Waterproof? Yes
  • Closure: Lace up
  • Insulation: Synthetic and wool
  • Weight (pair): 2 lbs 6 oz
  • MSRP: $250

Check price: Backcountry

Uggs Adirondack boot

Pros: Very comfortable and warm, collar folds down for two looks

Cons: Expensive

Great for: Light winter activities, everyday wear

Uggs are known for their comfortable and stylish footwear and the Uggs Adirondack III Winter Boot is no exception. Not only are they super comfy and look great (they have two looks if you fold down the faux fur collar), but they’re also incredibly warm and fully waterproof.

Constructed from waterproof leather and suede uppers, these boots are great for hanging out outside during the winter months or for everyday wear whether that’s commuting, walking around town, or running errands.

Eddie Bauer Rainier Boot

Best Tall Winter Boot

Key Features

  • Height: Not specified
  • Waterproof? Yes
  • Closure: Lace up
  • Insulation: Synthetic
  • Weight (pair): Not specified
  • MSRP: $220

Check price: Eddie Bauer

Eddie Bauer Rainier Winter Boot

Pros: Very comfortable, stylish, lots of eyelets to get a snug fit

Cons: Not as much traction as other boots on this list

Great for: Deep snow, dressing up or down

If you prefer tall boots for deep snow or wearing over your leggings or skinny jeans, the Eddie Bauer Rainier Boot is a great find. While the shaft length isn’t specified, our guess is that these have a height of 11″ or 12″ inches, which gives you plenty of room to romp around in the snowdrifts.

We also love that they are designed with 8 eyelets so you can get a snug fit from toe to calf.

Types of Women’s Winter Boots

Not all winter boots are created equal – here are a few things to keep in mind based on the activities you plan to do:

Winter hiking boots

Good winter hiking boots should be warm, waterproof, and have good traction to prevent you from slipping on icy terrain. Every boot is going to differ slightly among these characteristics, so spend some time really thinking about what kind of winter activities you’ll be doing.

  • Warmth: Do your feet get cold easily or are you prone to sweating? Choose a boot that matches how your feet respond to cold temperatures.
  • Waterproofness: All winter boots should be waterproof, but some more than others. See more about waterproofing in the section below.
  • Traction: The amount of grip and traction will also vary from boot to boot. My Oboz Sapphire 8″ boots have medium traction while the Oboz Bridger boots have a burlier outsole for better grip.
  • Height: Lastly, the height of your boots is also important. Shorter boots are easier to hike in while tall boots keep snow out better. If you choose a shorter boot, you can pair them with gaiters.

Winter work boots

Winter work boots are essential if you do outdoor chores like shoveling or mucking out horse stalls. They’re also great for sledding because they tend to be really warm and they’re tall so they keep the snow out.

Winter work boots, like the Bogs Whiteout boots, are fully waterproof, exceptionally warm, and offer great traction for icy or snowy conditions. Some will also come with a reinforced toe like a true work boot.

Casual winter boots

Casual winter boots are designed to be lightweight (but still warm) and stylish. I recently added the Blundstone Chelsea Vegan winter casual boot to my wardrobe and I love the simple yet elegant style. I can wear them around town with jeans or dress up for a nice dinner and still keep my feet nice and warm.

Casual winter boots aren’t meant to stand up to harsh winter conditions, though. They’re fine for commuting, walking around town, or other casual activities, but you’ll want something more durable if you plan on doing any winter hiking or snowshoeing.

Woman snowshoeing on snowy trail through the woods

How to Choose the Best Women’s Winter Boots

When shopping around for a pair of winter boots, there are several considerations you should take into account to make sure you get the right pair for your winter needs. Factors like warmth and insulation, waterproofing, and fit and sizing vary widely among winter boots, so you’ll want to spend some time thinking about what you really need and want.

Will you be using them mostly for walking around town or do you need a more durable and warmer pair for hitting the trails on your snowshoes?

Below, we dive into the different features of winter boots to help you choose the right pair for you.

Temperature ratings

Like sleeping bags, winter boots typically have a temperature rating. However, also like sleeping bags, the temperature rating is based on the lowest temperature that will keep you (or your feet) from freezing, not what temperature you’ll be comfortable at.

A -25 degree temperature rating may mean that the boot is warm and well-insulated, but it probably doesn’t mean your feet will be warm at -25 degrees. This is just something to keep in mind when shopping for winter boots.

Insulation Types

Most winter boots these days are insulated with synthetic materials like primaloft and thinsulate. The insulating material is stitched in between the outer shell of the boot and the inner lining, which can also be an insulator like the felt lining in the Sorel Caribou Winter Boots.

The amount of insulation a boot has will determine how warm it is. Some boots will say the specific fill, like 200 g, while others will have a temperature rating, like -25 degrees.

Some boots are insulated with natural materials like wool or down. If you’re purchasing a down-insulated boot, be sure to brush up on Responsible Down Standards.


Pretty much every winter boot will be waterproof to some degree to keep your feet dry and warm no matter the conditions. Ways in which boots can be waterproof include:

  • Rubber: Many winter boots will have a rubber outsole to keep water from seeping through seams. Rubber is extremely waterproof.
  • Treated uppers: the leather on winter boots is often treated with a waterproof finish to keep water out. Regular use will require re-waterproofing to keep your boots fully watertight. See how to take care of your boots below.
  • Waterproof membrane: Lighter-weight or casual boots will typically have a waterproof membrane in between the shell and inner lining. These membranes aren’t as waterproof as rubber or treated uppers.

Outsoles and traction

Depending on what kind of wintery conditions you face, traction and grip may be an important consideration. Boots with larger lugs on the soles and outsoles will provide better traction than boots with minimal tread. If you plan on hiking in the winter, we definitely recommend a boot that has a decent amount of grip.

You can also improve traction by using microspikes for particularly icy hikes or days.

>> Read Next: Winter Hiking Tips for Hiking in the Snow

Woman putting microspikes on over winter hiking boot on snowy bench
If you need more traction, a pair of Yaktrax or microspikes are a great option

Fit and sizing

Just like your other footwear or hiking boots, fit and sizing is an important consideration when shopping around for winter boots. You’ll want to make sure that the boots you choose are big enough to accommodate your thick winter socks. Many people often size up half a size when buying winter boots because they know they’ll be wearing thick socks.

For more tips on how boots should fit, head over to our post on the Best Women’s Hiking Shoes & Boots.

Taking care of your winter boots

To help your boots last as long as possible, you’ll want to take proper care of them. Winter boots aren’t cheap! Keep them clean and grime-free by brushing them off and occasionally cleaning them with water and a little soap. Dirt and grime can quickly cause the breakdown of materials.

If you’ve chosen a winter boot constructed with leather, it’s a good idea to apply a leather conditioner like Nikwax. This helps keep the leather supple and prevents cracking or drying out. For leather boots that don’t have a waterproof membrane or coating, you’ll want to apply a small amount of waterproofing wax like the Kenetrek Leather Treatment.

Do you have a favorite women’s winter boot? Which ones and what do you love about them? Which pair on this list caught your eye? Leave a comment below!

We've rounded up the best women's winter boots to keep your feet dry and warm on every type of winter adventure.

Written by
Kristen Bor

Hey there! My name is Kristen, and this is my outdoor blog. I discovered the power of the outdoors in my 20s, at the time I needed it most. Now 15 years later, prioritizing that critical connection with nature continues to improve my life. My goal at Bearfoot Theory is to empower you with the tools and advice you need to responsibly get outside.

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