Any shoe that's meant for walking should be comfortable and supportive. However, the best winter walking shoes require a few extra features that make them well-suited for the season, namely: quality insulation, water resistance, traction, and extra durability. The most comfortable cold-weather walking shoes come in every design, from slip-on sneakers to calf-high boots, but more coverage usually means more protection.
What To Look For When Shopping For Winter Walking Shoes
Consider where you live: Those who experience frigid, snowy, or slushy winters might require a boot-like shoe that's fully waterproof and well-insulated, while someone in a milder climate can probably get away with wearing a water-resistant sneaker.
Next, make sure the shoe has a slip-resistant sole with good traction — especially if temperatures drop below freezing in your region — so you stay safe (and on your feet) even when walking on wet or icy surfaces.
Finally, winter (and all the rock salt that comes with it) is undeniably tough on your belongings, so opt for a shoe that can stand up to harsher conditions. This could mean an extra-thick sole that can handle a lot of wear and tear without wearing down the treads, an outer fabric that rinses clean of salt stains, or a mesh material that keeps gravel out — and again, these requirements will differ depending on where you live — but especially for winter shoes, extra durability is always a good thing.
These 10 walking shoes check all of those boxes and come in tons of sizes, colors, and designs to suit your feet, your style, and your local weather.
1. The Overall Best Winter Sneaker
If you experience relatively mild winters (or you only plan to walk where there's not a lot of snow or ice on the sidewalk), a warm, waterproof sneaker should meet your needs. Dansko's Paisley outdoor sneaker has several features that make it great for winter wear, including a fully waterproof leather upper, an interior fiber that's designed for warmth and moisture management, and a thick outsole for improved traction. In terms of comfort, it has a triple-density footbed that absorbs shock and supports the natural arch of your foot, and it comes in wide sizes, too. As an added bonus, the interior has a special treatment for odor control.
One reviewer wrote: "These shoes are perfect for winter walking. They keep your foot warm and are very comfortable. [...] At first my right shoe rubbed the back of my ankle but that wore in and things are great now. The shoes have a very cushioned sole and they are a dream to use.”
Sizes: 5.5 — 13, including wide sizes | Colors: 9
2. The Best Value
Many winter sneakers will easily cost you more than $100, but these ankle-height shoes from Mishansha have all of the essential features for less than $50. That includes a water-resistant artificial leather upper, a thick textured sole to prevent slipping, a faux-fur interior for warmth, and elastic laces for ease of movement while walking. According to reviewers, they're also "super comfortable" and "very stylish." Plus, they come in suede-like finishes as well as grained leather textures.
One reviewer wrote: "I was looking for some good (inexpensive) winter boots that have good traction and are warm and comfortable. I found these and I haven't been sorry. They fit well and my feet stay warm with my wool socks. I feel confident walking on snow and ice.”
Sizes: 5.5 — 15 | Colors and styles: 17
3. The Ones You Can Machine Wash
Ice, snow, salt, and puddles can wreak havoc on your winter wardrobe, but these BZees shoes can handle it. How? They're machine-washable, so as soon as they start to get scuffed up, you can toss them straight into the wash. They're also well-suited for winter because of their faux-fur lining and emphasized nonslip bottoms. Plus, with stretch fabric, a cloud-like insole, and wide options, they'll keep you comfortable while you walk.
One reviewer wrote: "I wasn't too sure at first, but I gave them a try and I'm glad I did. The arch support is much better than I imagined in these and it feels like I'm wearing sneakers. I can wear them all day, right out of the box, with no issues at all and that' saying a lot for me. I liked them so much, I bought a black pair. They will be my go-to comfy shoes this winter.”
Sizes: 4 — 12, including wide | Colors and styles: 13
4. The Most Lightweight
Typically, winter shoes are heavy and clunky — but they don't necessarily have to be. HARENCE created these slip-on winter booties, which are not only “warm and comfortable" but also lightweight, according to reviewers. The waterproof Oxford fabric sheds light rain and snow, but you might want something heavier for navigating serious drifts. Still, they keep your feet warm and supported with their faux fur interior, flexible outsole, and elastic ankle gores for a snug slip-on fit.
One reviewer wrote: "Purchased these for winter house shoes but I wear them everywhere. So comfortable and easy to slip on and off. The soles make walking safe, no slipping. Highly recommend!”
Sizes: 4 — 14 | Colors and styles: 14
5. The Best Slip-On Winter Shoes
Usually, slip-on shoes are associated with warm weather, while clasps and laces are associated with cold weather, but the Coldpack Ice+ shoe from Merrell offers slip-on convenience and cold-season protection simultaneously. It's designed for winter thanks to its waterproof leather outer, textured rubber sole, and reinforced toe. It's also extra warm thanks to a fleece lining, with enhanced stability in the Vibram sole and even built-in odor protection.
One reviewer wrote: "I love these shoes for winter. They are perfect for before and after winter sports for driving in the car, their grip on snow and ice is great, they are wonderful for walking trips to the store and other places when the snow is not deep.”
Sizes: 5 — 11, including wide sizes | Colors: 2
6. The Most Waterproof Shoes
Because of the shape and materials, these XPETI Thermator shoes are a great option if you're looking to keep your feet dry in extreme conditions. They have an impermeable membrane that keeps out water, and they reach your upper ankles for extra protection — but they also let sweat escape through the coated PU leather. Despite boasting 200 grams of insulation and a deep 7-millimeter boot-like lug sole, they're also surprisingly lightweight, supportive, and easy to move in. Plus, they grip wet and icy pavement without issue. Sizing up one full size is recommended for a comfortable fit.
One reviewer wrote: "I am a mail carrier for the USPS... I trekked in 2 foot snow for around 10 hours on my walking route and my feet stayed dry and warm all day. I've been wearing these all winter and they have shown minimal breakdown/wear on the heels, uppers and insoles. These held up better than my postal approved, waterproof boots at half the cost. I will definitely be buying another pair. I wear a women's 11 and bought an 11. It's a little smaller than I would like in the toe box but it's still comfortable for 10+ hours of wear.”
Sizes: 6 — 11 | Colors and styles: 4
7. A Warm, Fuzzy Option
These boots from Columbia are called Ice Maiden II for a reason: They're designed to keep your feet as warm as possible. They feature 200-gram insulation beneath a waterproof leather and textile outer, both of which reach mid-calf for optimal warmth. They also feature a thick textured sole and adjustable laces. With the comfy cushioning and lightweight midsole, these are great for cold-weather walks, despite their boot-like appearance. You can get them in wide options, too.
One reviewer wrote: "I use these boots as my everyday winter boots meaning they are subjected to Wisconsin cold temperatures and snow. I wear them when we go out for walks, driving to work or running errands. I get compliments on how they look. They keep my feet warm outside and yet I don't get uncomfortable while wearing them in the store while shopping, etc.”
Sizes: 5 — 12, including wide | Colors and styles: 9
8. These Comfy Chukka Boots
They're admittedly not the most waterproof option (though the suede upper is treated with Scotchguard for water repellence), but if comfort is your top priority, these Skechers Chukka boots feature a superbly soft faux-fur lining that is both fluffy and warm. The cushioning is lightweight yet supportive, and an air-infused insole absorbs shock while you walk. The ankle-high design keeps your feet cozy in cold weather, and a reviewer wrote that they provide "just enough cushion and traction" for winter walks.
One reviewer wrote: "Skechers is really stepping up their game, providing both comfort--cushy, supportive soles--and style! I wanted a real suede leather bootie, fuzzy lined for cold winter days. These fit the bill without looking clunky. They are slip-on, with no zipper or elastic gore. So if you have high arches like me, you might want to order a half size up for ease of putting them on. (I did with the 2nd pair ordered.) They are so comfy and cute, I find myself wearing them instead of my favorite, go-to athletic sneakers. I even wear them around the house instead of slippers, they're that comfortable.”
Sizes: 5 — 12, including wide sizes | Colors: 8
9. These Boots With Extra Traction
If you plan on walking in icy or wet conditions, these Sperry boots are the way to go. The emphasized tread features tons of texture to grip slippery surfaces — plus, it extends around the toe and up against the sides for improved grip. In terms of comfort, style, and waterproofing, they have those too, all thanks to their microfleece lining, rubber toe, and treated leather. The nonmarking soles are deck- and kitchen-floor friendly, while a zippered ankle ensures they’re a cinch to ease off.
One reviewer wrote: "They're waterproof, super comfortable and are great quality. They are a little hard to get on and off with just the zipper if the laces are tightened. Usually wearing for rainy dog walks in the fall/winter. They are not super warm, but on cold days a wool sock works well.”
Sizes: 5 — 12, including wide sizes | Colors: 10
10. These Affordable Hiking Boots
Maybe your neighborhood is especially hilly and doesn't have sidewalks — or maybe you're a fan of wintertime hikes. Either way, these Northside Pioneer boots are designed for rougher terrain. Since they're technically hiking boots, they're moisture-wicking and water-resistant with thick, nonslip soles for dryness and warmth. They also have mesh inserts, a higher ankle, and a gusseted tongue to keep dirt and gravel out. Finally, they're super lightweight for a hiking shoe and padded with a (washable) EVA insole for support and comfort during movement.
One reviewer wrote: "Absolutely LOVE these boots. Needed a quick replacement for a hiking vacation. Wore them everyday for 4 days hiking over flat ground, hills, rocky terrain, through a river and an ocean walk. Held up amazingly. No blisters and callouses. Awesome grip and traction. REALLY COMFORTABLE! Will definitely purchase again. Only down side is that it’s not fully water proof on the top. But it does dry out quickly.”
Sizes: 6 — 10 | Colors and styles: 4
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