Best Rain Boots of 2022

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Best Rain Boots of 2022

Published Jul 15, 2022 12:26 PM While a good pair of rain boots may spend a fair amount of time at the ba

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Published Jul 15, 2022 12:26 PM

While a good pair of rain boots may spend a fair amount of time at the back of your closet, they may be the most fun footwear you own. After all, what’s more satisfying than stomping into deep puddles or muddy bogs? The best boots for rain allow you to do this while keeping your feet (and socks) bone dry.  

This wet-weather footwear is made from thick molded rubber or foam with a pull-on design that ensures there are no seams or gaps that allow water to infiltrate the boot—even if you decide to walk through a shallow stream or creek. Rain boots range in height from low 6-inch models for moderate protection to tall 13-inch boots that extend all the way to the knee. In addition to protecting you from water, these boots also have non-slip treads designed to keep you upright on slick surfaces. If you’re looking for the best rain boots to keep your feet dry, then keep reading to find out about our picks.

Things to Consider Before Buying the Best Rain Boots

Waterproof Design

You might be surprised by how many purported rain boots actually don’t prevent your feet from getting wet. A good rain boot should be completely waterproof with no seams or gaps in the upper that can allow water to infiltrate the boot. Avoid boots that are water-resistant, as they won’t keep your feet dry if they’re inundated with water. The best rain boots will be pull-on, eliminating the tongue that can serve as a way for water to infiltrate the boot. If you’re looking for a lace-up rain boot, make sure the boot has a waterproof liner that runs up the entire boot shaft to ensure that it keeps your feet dry.

Shaft Height

A boot’s shaft is measured from the arch to the top of the rim of the boot opening. The boot shaft protects the ankles and calves while preventing water from finding its way down the boot opening while walking through deeper puddles. 
Low rain boots have a 6-inch shaft, which is tall enough to cover the ankles and provide moderate coverage while allowing for good freedom of movement. Rain boots with an 8- to 10-inch shaft extend midway up the calf, providing better coverage for wetter conditions. Tall rain boots have shafts that extend 12 inches or higher above the arch to just below the knee, making them ideal for walking through muddy terrain or even walking through a stream or creek. 

Materials and Thickness

Rain boots are made from rubber, latex, or PVC. For durability, look for boots made from rubber or latex, because they will outlast PVC, which is prone to cracking and losing its shape over time. If you’re uncertain about the boot’s quality, look at its thickness and weight. Thicker rubber will last longer and do a better job of holding its shape than boots made with thinner lightweight material.

Comfort and Traction

A rain boot isn’t much good if it’s too uncomfortable to wear or doesn’t prevent you from slipping and falling in slick conditions. A comfortable rain boot should have a rounded toe that won’t crowd your toes with a thick foam midsole and cushioned insole that absorbs shock as you walk. The outsole will vary depending on the type of rain boot. Rain boots designed for muddy conditions should have a lug sole with a deep tread that has wide gaps allowing it to grip soft terrain while also shed mud as you walk. Rain boots designed for smooth surfaces, such as a concrete sidewalk, should have a broad flat sole with tight siping that will grip to smooth surfaces to prevent you from slipping.

Best Overall

Best_Rain_Boots_Xtratuf

Why It Made The Cut

Xtratuf boots are comfortable to wear, easy to pull on and kick off, and have a sole that provides great traction in wet weather.

Key Features 

  • Sizes: 7-14 (Men’s), 5-11 (Women’s)
  • Materials: Rubber
  • Shaft Height: 6 inches

Pros

  • Attractive look
  • Comfortable design
  • Excellent traction 

Cons 

Like many of the best boots for harsh weather, this pair from Xtratuf has its roots in the working world. As their name suggests, these boots were originally designed to keep fishermen upright and dry on slick boat decks. But, despite their utilitarian origins, these boots look good enough to wear in more urban environments without looking out of place. Their ankle high, giving them just enough coverage to keep feet dry on wet city streets. The wide mouth and lower shaft make them easier to pull on than a traditional rain boot. Loops on the front and back help with the process of pulling them on. They also come equipped with a thick rubber layer at the back of the heel called a kick tab that allows you to remove them while keeping your hands dry and clean. The Xtratuf are comfortable too, thanks to a large rounded toe that prevents the boot from rubbing the toes while walking. 

And since the shaft doesn’t conform to the leg, there’s plenty of freedom of movement to prevent chafing while walking in them. The Xtratuf boots use a moderate tread—just enough to provide traction while preventing the boot tread from becoming clogged with stones, mud, and other debris you might pick up along your travels.  That’s not to say that they’re short on traction; the flat sole consists of soft rubber that clings nicely to smooth surfaces.

Best Affordable

Best_Rain_Boots_Crocs

Why It Made The Cut

Crocs is a well-known brand for making reliable—and super comfortable—footwear and good prices.  

Key Features 

  • Sizes: 7-13 (Men’s) 
  • Materials: Rubber
  • Shaft Height: 8 inches

Pros

  • Lightweight foam construction 
  • Affordably priced
  • Thick tread provides excellent traction 

Cons 

This set of boots from one of the best known names in foam footwear is a great option for those who don’t want to drop a lot of money on footwear they’ll only wear when it rains. The boots use Croc’s special formula of waterproof high-density foam that conforms to the feet while providing a thick soft midsole that cushions the feet and legs from impact while walking and standing. With their mid-ankle height, they offer good coverage for wetter conditions and deeper puddles. They also have a fully molded design, eliminating seams that can allow water to infiltrate the boot. 

The soft foam material, coupled with the boot’s thick thread and tight siping, also make them ideal for gripping smooth wet surfaces. The foam is somewhat inflexible, so consider going up a half size to ensure you don’t have to struggle to take the boots on and off, especially since there are no straps to help you pull the boot onto your foot. 

As with other Croc footwear, the foam construction makes them noticeably lighter than rubber rain boots, making them more comfortable for all-day wear than heavier rubber boots. While the light weight is nice, we should note that the foam is less durable than rubber.

Best Women’s

Best_Rain_Boots_HUNTER

Why It Made The Cut

These boots offer excellent protection and coverage from wet weather with a trendy look and loads of color options. 

Key Features 

  • Sizes: 5-11 (Women’s) 
  • Materials: Rubber
  • Shaft Height: 9 inches

Pros

  • Iconic Welly look 
  • Excellent protection from water
  • Thick tread provides excellent traction in all conditions 

Cons 

This Wellington rain boot has been one of the most popular women’s rain boots since Hunter debuted the original tall version of this boot way back in 1955, and for good reason. In addition to their iconic style, these stylish rain boots also offer tremendous protection against rain. They feature rubber seamless construction that provides complete protection for women’s feet. 

The shaft extends 10 inches from the arch, providing full coverage for wet conditions while providing more freedom of movement than the original tall Hunter rain boots that extend 16 inches from the arch. 

The tread on the outsoles is designed to grip to wet surfaces. The boots also have a 1-inch heel with a lug style sole that sheds debris well should you take them into muddier environments. A strap at the top of the shaft adds flare for urban settings and also allows you to tighten them around the ankle for a snugger fit. A roomy toe box prevents your feet from rubbing as you walk while a thick polyurethane foam midsole provides ample cushioning for the feet. 

In addition to function, these are also an attractive boot. Wellies are an iconic look that pair well with a variety of looks. ensuring your feet aren’t just dry but also stylish. Keeping aesthetics in mind, Hunter’s rain boots come in far more color options than your average rain boot.

Best Men’s

Best_Rain_Boots_BOGS

Why It Made The Cut

The seamless design and tall shaft coupled with a comfortable footbed make these the best all-around men’s rain boots we found. 

Key Features 

  • Sizes: 7-14 (Men’s) 
  • Materials: Rubber
  • Shaft Height: 12.75 inches

Pros

  • Seamless waterproof design 
  • Tall shaft provides good coverage
  • Foam footbed 

Cons 

  • Inner fabric liner tends to wear out quickly

These boots check all the boxes when it comes to what you want in a rain boot. They’re made from seamless leather, ensuring your feet stay dry even when tromping through deeper puddles. The tall shaft extends nearly 13 inches from the arch, providing ample coverage for the entire calf. Rubber boots can easily make your feet sweaty, which is why I like this boot’s moisture wicking lining, which allows water vapor to escape from your feet. 

In addition to keeping your feet dry, these boots also do a good job of keeping them comfy, thanks to a high density foam footbed that molds to your feet. That footbed is also treated with an odor-fighting technology, preventing the boots from getting smelly. Plus, the insole is also removable, making it easy to clean or replace. 

A slip-resistant tread that consists of soft rubber covered in fine siping grip smooth surfaces for excellent traction. The boots are also easier to pull on and off thanks to a wide 16-inch in diameter opening that’s wider than most rain boots. We also like the large handholds on the upper part of the shaft that give you a place to get a firm grip on the boot while pulling them on your feet.

Best Kid’s

Best_Rain_Boots_BOGS_2

Why It Made The Cut

The tall shaft, rubber material and large handles make these boots ideal for playing in the rain. 

Key Features 

  • Sizes: Toddler, Little Kid, and Big kid
  • Materials: Rubber
  • Shaft height: 10.5 inches

Pros

  • Seamless waterproof design 
  • Tall shaft allows for splashing in deep puddles
  • Handles make them easier to pull on

Cons 

With its broad range of sizes, durable waterproof design and great coverage, this set of fun rain boots from Bogs are a great option for kids. They’re made from 100 percent rubber, ensuring your child’s feet stay dry even when splashing through deep puddles. The shaft of the boots also extend 10.5 inches from the arch, so kids can wade into deep puddles or even streams without worrying about getting their socks wet. 

The broad tread on the outsole grips to slick surfaces, helping to prevent slips and falls while playing in the rain. The boot opening measures a full 13 inches around, making it wide enough to tuck pants into the boot while also making it easier to put the boots on. 

Parents will appreciate the large handles on the top of the boot shaft, which makes it easier for kids to pull the boots on. Bogs also makes this boot in a wide range of sizes to suit toddlers all the way up to big kids age 12 years old. Bogs boots consist of thicker rubber construction with a reinforced toe and outsole, ensuring you’ll be able to pass them down from child to child as they grow into and out of them.

Best Stylish Rain Boots

Best_Rain_Boots_Sperry

Why It Made The Cut

The leather and rubber look of this classic lace-up rain boot is a great choice for those wet commutes to the office. 

Key Features 

  • Sizes: 7 to 13 (Men’s)
  • Materials: Rubber and leather
  • Shaft Height: 6 inches

Pros

  • Attractive look 
  • Combination of rubber with waterproof liner keeps feet dry
  • Numerous color options 

Cons 

The fact is most rain boots can be pretty utilitarian looking, making them unsuitable for the office. While you can carry an extra pair of shoes to change into at work, Sperry’s classic duck boots are a better option. The outsole and lower half of the upper are fully waterproof, thanks to their rubber construction, ensuring your feet stay dry as long as you watch out for that ankle deep pothole that’s just a step off the curb. The uppers consist of oiled leather and a 6-inch shaft that’s fully lined to keep water from entering through the laces and tongue. 

The combination of leather and rubber make for an attractive look that pairs well with pants, skirts, or leggings, making them suitable footwear for many workplaces. And the boots come in a variety of color schemes. 

There are other features to like about duck boots too. Tight sipping on the tread is designed to keep your feet from slipping on the slick wet surfaces you’ll likely encounter on that commute to the office. These boots are also suitable for colder conditions, thanks to a thermal lining on the interior that extends up the shaft. These rain boots are comfortable, too, thanks to a memory foam footbed that conforms to the feet while absorbing shock while walking on sidewalks and other hard surfaces. 

How We Made Our Picks

When looking for a rain boot, we tend to focus on how water tight the boot is. But, in addition to being waterproof, a good boot should also fulfill the other important requirements of a boot. With that in mind, I used the following criteria to determine my selections for this guide:

  • Waterproof: A rain boot is no good if it doesn’t keep your feet dry. I only chose watertight boots made from materials like rubber and PVC foam. Since the boot opening is also a potential place for rain to enter, I also chose boots with at least a 6-inch shaft.
  • Comfort: A rain boot isn’t much good if it gives you blisters. I chose rain boots with roomy toe boxes and cushioned insoles that keep your feet comfy as well as dry.
  • Materials: Just because a rain boot is waterproof when you buy it, doesn’t mean it will stay that way. I selected quality rain boots that use thicker rubber or PVC foam that will stay waterproof and hold their shape. 

FAQs

Q: How much do rain boots cost?

Rain boots are typically more affordable than other types of boots although prices can vary significantly. Expect to pay between $40 and $130 for a good pair of rain boots.

Q: Should rain boots be one size bigger than your normal size?

Boot sizing can vary depending on the brand of rubber boot. Generally speaking, the boot should fit the same size as a normal shoe. That said, you may wish to go with a larger size to make the boot easier to take on and off. If your foot is in between sizes, then go with the larger boot size.

Q: Are rain boots supposed to be tight?

Good quality rain boots should not be tight. You’ll know the boot fits correctly when you have enough space in the front of the boot to wiggle your toes. Also, the heel should not lift up out of the boot as you walk. It’s also important to make sure that you have enough room in the boot to wear socks.

Q: Are waterproof boots the same as rain boots?

Waterproof boots and rain boots both are impermeable to water up to a certain height. All rain boots are waterproof. Keep in mind that waterproof boots differ from water resistant boots. Water-resistant boots are treated to prevent water from passing through the material; however, if the material becomes saturated, they will not protect the feet from getting wet.

Q: Should you wear socks with rain boots?

You should wear socks with rain boots. In fact, since rain boots are made from rubber, they are more likely to rub against your foot as you walk, which can cause painful blisters to form on your feet. Socks create a needed buffer between your skin and the boot to prevent these blisters from forming.

Final Thoughts

A good rain boot should not only be waterproof, it should also provide you with good traction in wet conditions and be comfortable to wear for long periods. With a design that makes them easy to put on and take off and a soft sole that grips smooth surfaces, the Xtratuf Performance Series Ankle Deck Boots are the best all around rain boots. If you’re looking for more coverage for the ankle, consider the Bogs Mens Waterproof Rubber Rain Boots or Hunter Original Short Adjustable Rain Boot, both of which feature tall shafts.

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