Calling all playground rulers, race challengers and tag warriors: play time doesn't end just because it's winter. For active kids who love to be outside, comfortable boots that can weather the elements are a necessary winter wardrobe hack. Check out our list of must-have boots for active kids this winter, all kid-approved for speed, comfort and style.
When choosing the best boots for active kids, there are several things to consider: easy-on options, go-anywhere functionality, supportive soles for speedsters and, of course, the weather.
To avoid the morning struggle, we recommend choosing kids' winter boots that are easy to put on. Many boots come with a bungee and cordlock lace system that makes it easy to pull boots on and then tighten or loosen them by simply pulling a cord. Another kid-approved favorite is Velcro for a secure fit that lasts all day. Other, more traditional alternatives are slip-ons and zippers, all of which your kid can do themselves.
Winter's early evenings can mean playdates are darker than normal. Many kids' winter snow boots come with a unique reflective strip, either on the back of the sole or on the zipper, that makes the boots easy to see in the dark. These small, reflective strips are great for high visibility in the evening and early morning. Better yet, your kid will love the cool design and see-anywhere capability.
Playground races don't stop just because the temperature drops. That's why we recommend choosing a supportive boot made with a comfortable upper shell and rubber sole to absorb shock, making running and long walks easy on the legs. Be conscious of the activities your kid will be doing while wearing their new winter boots, and choose a design and style that is suitable.
Snow, rain, subzero temperatures – these are all things you, as a parent, need to consider when choosing the perfect kids' winter boots. For kids' snow boots, we recommend choosing a higher boot with a gusset closure around the calf that stops snow and cold from getting in. For rain boots, we recommend a waterproof exterior and a non-slip gritty rubber sole. Be aware of the weather and types of play your kid will be using these boots for, and choose a boot that is appropriate.
The best snow boots for kids are higher on the leg, at least mid-calf height with a waterproof gusset that keeps the elements out. Because snow days can get wet and cold, a water-resistant upper is necessary. Opt for a boot lining or insulation that is either quilted or fleece to lock in warmth and protect against extra cold temperatures. Look for snow boots that have flexible rubber soles with traction treads for extra grit and to prevent slipping in the snow. Many kids' snow boots also come with nice extras like reflective accents and pull-on tabs for easy-to-see, easy-to-put-on capabilities.
Booties are great options for kids who live the city life, or for casual, everyday commutes in moderate winter temperatures. Kids' booties are often made with a suede or leather upper with polyester lining. Look for an antimicrobial finish that keeps the fabric looking fresh but is also durable enough to be spot cleaned. Because these booties are designed for walking, many come with features like a cushioned foam footbed and a padded collar and tongue for all-day play. As an all-weather footwear option, opt for kids' booties that have a slip-resistant sole. Other extras to consider are reflective designs for high visibility during the evening.
Favorite child pastime: jumping in puddles. Give your child the gift of outdoor fun in the rain with the best kids' rain boots this winter. Choose a pair of puddle stompers that have a mid-calf or higher waterproof rubber upper and soles to keep the rain out. Water-resistant neoprene is a great waterproof alternative that still offers flexibility. A cushioned foam footbed and slip-resistant rubber sole makes for comfortable play dates with fewer accidents. Because most kids' rain boots don't come equipped with a zipper or laces, choose a pair of boots with easy-on pull tabs so your little one is ready to go in no time.