I have a few pet peeves in life but the biggest has to be shelling out big bucks for a pair of kids’ winter boots that are supposed to be waterproof but aren’t, or boots that fall apart mid-season and have to be replaced.
I’ve even stood there in the store and said to myself “there’s a zipper right to the bottom, these can’t be waterproof but the tag says they are, so …..” and then I get burned.
Every. Single. Time.
Winter boots need to be two things: warm and waterproof (not just water resistant). If they’re easy to pull on and off, terrific. If they’re cute and the kids like them, super. If they last more than one season, hallelujah. But above all they need to keep those little piggies warm and dry.
If you’re in the market for a new pair this season, here are some ideas:
Ava and Pinetree styles for girls, and Igloo and Mustang for boys are lace-up boots with drawstring and toggle, and comfort rated for -40 C. The arctic rubber base makes for good treads and the multi-layer removable inner-boot system allows for temperature regulation, because not every day requires -40 protection and hell hath no fury like a toddler with hot feet.
Orders placed directly from Baffin.com will ship for approximately $14 in Canada (depending on exact location), and are eligible for a full refund inside of 30 days if something isn’t right.
Starting at $99.99
Available in toddler size 7 to youth size 6, with a temperature rating of up to -30 C, not only are they legitimately waterproof and warm, they also come in a variety of cute colours and patterns and are equipped with handles so they’re easy to get on and off. Bogs usually hold up over multiple seasons, which can make the investment worthwhile.
At a weight of two pounds per pair some kids find them too heavy, but the company offers a 100% guarantee so if you don’t try before you buy, return them for a full refund. Bogsfootwear.ca offers free shipping and returns.
Starting at $95
Available in children’s sizes 8-13 and youth 1-6, these boots are practical, versatile and affordable. Girls styles come in pink, purple and dark green and boys in grey with orange accents, dark green and navy with bright blue accents. They’re 100% waterproof and have an adjustable snow collar with drawstring and toggle which testers swear is the key to keeping snow out and feet dry.
Kamik is 100% Canadian owned and operated and their products can be purchased online via Softmoc.com (just click the Buy Online button on the Kamik website). Softmoc.com offers free shipping and returns on most items.
Starting at $49
Not the cheapest by far, but you’ll have a hard time finding any negative reviews on the Keen Basin WP. They’re warm and weatherproof, while the fuzzy cuff helps keep warm in and cold out. The bungee laces and inside pull loops make for easy pull-on. The only drawback (other than the price) is that the Basin WP style only comes in two colours, both predominantly black.
Starting at $120
Everything you want in a winter boot, these are easy to pull on and secure, light weight, flexible, insulated and feature “an impenetrable moisture barrier to guarantee dryness.” Girls and boys styles come in sizes 1-13 and are available in six colour combinations (mostly blues and darks).
They also have the toddler version of the same boot, available in four colour combinations. Free shipping from the North Face website is only available for orders of $99+ but some styles are available on sportchek.ca.
Starting at $79.99
Waterproof and wind resistant, these boots will keep little feet cozy and dry, while the outer sole traction helps keep them upright and on the move when they’re climbing toboggan hills and building snow forts. The recycled felt of the inner boot is washable and great for added comfort and warmth.
Starting at $75