Now that sweater weather is in full force, boots of all styles will soon make their way out of the dark depths of your closet. If your shoes aren't quite winter ready, hacks to make boots slip-proof will make your commute through the snow a lot easier — not to mention injury free.
Whether you're facing fresh, powdery snow or trudging through layers of ice, having the appropriate cold weather shoes is a must. But investing in quality pairs of non-slip boots can get costly and stylish options aren't always readily available. Besides, you're probably already committed to a trusty pair that you've broken in just right. Luckily, there are always DIY methods to make your boots equipped to handle snow and ice, whether you're glued to a favorite pair or you're eyeing new shoes that don't exactly have the best traction.
If you want to avoid fearing for your life every time you take a step, follow any of these seven strategies for giving your boots the grip they need to survive the slush.
1. Scuff The Soles
Adding traction to your boots can be as as easy as intentionally scuffing the bottoms. Give your shoes a better grip by scraping the soles against abrasive surfaces like rough concrete or gravel. New shoes especially are more slippery due to their perfectly smooth soles, so wearing them down will make a noticeable difference.
Believe it or not, you can actually spray on the grip you need to winter-proof your boots. Spray-on traction adhesives coat your shoes with enough protection to brave icy surfaces, so be sure to keep a bottle in your stash all season long.
This traction spray from Bare Ground does a good job of adding grip in a hurry, though several applications may be necessary.
Adding a grainy texture to your soles may also help prevent you from sliding all over place. Try combining salt and rubber glue to coat onto your shoes. The mixture should add a non-slip component to your boot of choice.
If you have rubber soled shoes, try this plastic fusion epoxy adhesive as your "glue" base. Sprinkle salt on top, and you'll have grippy treads that aren't going anywhere.
Although hairspray is a super temporary solution, it is an alternative to spray-on traction adhesives that will make shoes with smooth soles a little more slip-proof. This quick fix will require reapplication on a daily basis, however. Before stepping outside, be sure the hairspray has dried completely.
L'Oreal Paris' Elnett Satin hairspray has a quick-dry formula and sprays in ultra fine mist. Plus, this spray is super multifunctional: It can also be used to remove lip stick stains and stop tights from running.
5. Score The Bottoms
You may be weary of taking a knife or razor to your favorite pair of boots, but you definitely won't regret it later. Scoring your soles can give them more traction as water will be able to pass through the treads.
A cost effective way to get your shoes snow ready is to adhere sand to your soles. Using spray adhesive, like this one from Loctite, and dry sand, coat the bottoms with the gritty material. Coarse sand will surely give your boots more traction.
If you're not too keen on the DIY-ing, you can always slip ice grips onto your existing boots. They're a surefire way to add tread without compromising the integrity of your shoes. These traction grips from Due North come in colored options as well as basic black. You can take them on and off with ease and add them to any style of boot.
All you need is a little DIY magic to give your boots a non-slip grip. Now you can enjoy the snowier, icier months free of fear.
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This post was originally published on 1/9/2017. It was updated on 6/25/2019 and 4/3/2020. Additional reporting by Kate Miller.
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