Most days, we don’t think about our feet, until the seasons change and the time comes when our favorite set of shoes leave us feeling damp, turning every step into a soggy nightmare. Soaked socks, toes that never dry, and a cold that creeps up our legs shall come to pass if we don’t gird our hooves against the wet weather and accompanying cold.
Only a set of waterproof boots can save us from days of cold and damp on our most precious of extremities.
Mens Waterproof Boots
When picking your warm water-fighting wearables, the trick is to choose for your climate and your needs. Any good boot will keep out the weather, but it can also hold in the sweat if you’re in a hotter climate. Consider whether you plan on slogging through snow or will be skating on ice, ambient temperature for where you live, and how much coverage you need up the ankle.
Look at insulated liners for keeping yourself warm as well as dry, or removable insides that can handle 4 seasons worth of downpours while changing how hot your tootsies are going to get.
15 Best Waterproof Boots
For work, play, walking, hiking, or kicking ass and taking names, here’s the 15 best waterproof boots for sodden trodding.
Good for average wear during the cold months as well as light hiking, the Bugaboot is a wide, flat, winter warrior with high tops to keep snow out and loads of insulation for added warmth. Though it can tackle a mountain pass, the ankle support isn’t ideal for hard treks, so keep wear to everyday snow-kicking.
Made specifically for dairy farmers, Bogs has done a spectacular job of offering protection from wetness while also being able to grip during icy, snowy, and slippery conditions. They’re passable for cold conditions, but don’t have the heavy insulation of a winter boot, giving them a strong 3-season to year-round utility depending on where you dwell.
Bike commuters should take special note of the 510, as they are one of the few boots light enough and sufficiently streamlined to allow use with a commuter cycle, even when braving the wet winters in the Pacific Northwest. A stylish urban choice, you won’t be able to get far in snow without some slipping into the top, but when covered with a pair of jeans they’re good for any average urbane day in a monsoon.
4. L.L. Bean Duck Boots
Bean boots are emulated everywhere because they broke the mold. Time has only refined and perfected the process of sealing the rubber bottoms to the leather uppers, providing traction in water, protection from wetness, and warmth that works all winter long. Purchase: $139
Rustic dwellers who are seeking a bigger waterproof boot intended for deep snow and even fording small streams will be shocked at how much comfort the Caribou XT packs in, without raising the price too heavily. Big and bold, intended for snow and ice, these are overkill for average strolls, but just enough kill for a serious slog.
Here’s where your arctic commandos will want to put down your SIGs and perk up your ears. Handy for kicking in doors with impact resistance built right in, the side-zip system lets you get into and out of these at speed. Though the exterior is tough as barbed wire, the inside is meant for comfort with a vibram outsole that prevents pain during serious work.
Lush full-grain leather on the outside while the lined interior is comprised of 50% eco-conscious recycled plastic bottles, these are hard not to love. Breathable mesh uppers and laces (also made from recycled bottles) provide ample ventilation over a SensorFlex system that bounces back to eliminate pain in the back, knee, and ankle, even when walking on hard surfaces day after day.
8. RainMan Dustin
Easily mistaken for a light boot that couldn’t survive a single winter, much less a hard cross-country sojourn, the Dustin is far more than fine looks. The welded seams turn these from standard brogue to waterproof hero that looks good enough to pair with your suit. Urban commandos seeking good looks, deep tread, and zero leaks can stop reading now. Purchase: $202
Being able to go from field work lugging around camera gear to board meetings with corporate investors, then hopping a train to take a plane off to an urban center is a lot to ask of a single waterproof boot. These can do it all without causing foot fatigue or turning to scuffed messes when the going gets tough.
10. Cole Haan LunarGrand Lace Boot
A lightweight walking boot that is intended to give you the freedom to kick up your heels, the canvas and leather appearance provide a unique savoir faire that can draw admiring looks as well as keep rain, snow, and ice from soaking your socks.
Red Wing has largely built their brand by being one of the best work boots for guys who need their feet to never fail. At first blush it’s easy to believe the stiffness will never give way, but after a few days of wear, they break in to fit like a dream come true, while looking forever like a million bucks with the barest of maintenance.
The best of the truly lightweight boots, the Light II is the kind of sequel bootmakers envy. 1000-D nylon and pebble-grain leather are stitched into vibram soles, creating a soft, enviable tread that grips hard, lasts long, and looks amazing. On street, trail, sidewalk, ice, snow, and most anywhere, these are fashion forward without chinks in the armor.
You might recognize these as the boots of choice for James Bond when Daniel Craig took to the hills in the film Spectre. Built like an assault vehicle on the outside with an interior as plush as any harem room, these are like walking on air surrounded by iron. They’ll take hundreds of miles of abuse with US-made quality all while keeping your dogs from barking.
14. Filson Uplander
Since these bear the Filson name, you can bet they’re worth the hefty investment. The full grain leather is better at keeping out wetness than synthetics, and as they conform to your foot, the fit and feel will only improve with age and wear. Beat the hell out of them and they’ll still go on for years to come.
15. O’Keeffe Felix Pebble-Grain Suede Brogue Boots
The Felix combines the best of all possible worlds by using a design from Ireland that is crafted in Italy, where bespoke shoes are a lifelong passion. Nothing short of gorgeous, they also bear Dainite rubber soles welted by Goodyear to join the pebble-grained suede upper that begs to be shown off at every opportunity.