With the arrival of the Fall/Winter 2018 season comes cooler temperatures, longer nights and the inevitable deluge of pumpkin spice. It also marks a prelude to snow, slush and slippery ice, with sudden showers leaving behind obstacles of puddles and mud. To combat the season’s inclement weather, we’ve selected some of the best boots of the season, along with some tried-and-true favorites.
The boots are organized into three categories: Affordable (sub-$200), Mid-Range ($250-$400) and High-End ($450+). These tiers aim to offer the best bang for the buck, blending contemporary tastes with versatile styles so that you’ll be able to wear them for years to come.
Whether you’re seeking a new pair of go-to cold weather shoes or getting tired of conventional options, we’ve got you covered.
Timberland Gaiter — $181 USD via Farfetch.
Timberland recently revamped its signature 6” boot, transforming the iconic workwear style into a convertible gaiter style. Along with the familiar lug sole and water resistant nubuck upper, the boots boast a breathable polyester shaft, which can be flipped down to shorten the silhouette. A buckle aids in securing the shoe to the wearer’s foot.
Nike SFB Field — $170 USD via Nike.
Initially designed for outdoors, military and police usage, the functional appeal of Nike’s SFB Field boot extends to anyone seeking sturdy footwear. The Swoosh’s cushioning technology ensures that the tall shoe is suitable for all-day wear, with a custom traction pattern on the outsole for extra grip. Heavy padding on the inside further protects the foot, which is guaranteed a secure fit thanks to a lacing structure that reaches all the way up the tall shaft.
Polo Ralph Lauren Alpine — $168.75 USD via Macy’s.
Part of Polo Ralph Lauren’s Fall/Winter 2018 “Downhill Skier” collection, the Alpine leather boots are a play on the outdoor-ready designs the brand introduced in the early ‘90s. Sporting the Polo brand’s signature forefoot strap for an extra snug fit, the boots also boast hi-vis yellow laces, bold “ALPINE” detailing on the lateral side and a “Polo Hi-Tech” badge at the tongue. A moc toe and lug sole aid in bridging the gap between the shoe’s menswear inspiration and streetwear accents.
Dr Martens 1460 Boot Mono — $160 USD via SSENSE.
A staple of punk, metal and alternative music since the ‘70s, the Dr Martens 1460 Boots remained relevant throughout the following decades thanks to the effortlessly simple, accessible shape and reliable construction. The silhouette is comprised of a goodyear-welted oil-resistant outsole and tough leather upper; because this is the mono edition, everything from the signature yellow welt stitching to the “AIR WAIR”-branded pull tab has been reimagined in black, ensuring the boots are more versatile than ever before.
Blundstone 550 — $189.95 USD via Nordstrom.
An Australian classic since 1870, Blundstone has proven itself as the go-to brand for the country’s many blue-collar toilers, with its footwear garnering worldwide popularity for their pull-on styling and comfortable feel. In recent years, the company has elevated its signature Chelsea-style boot with a shock-absorbing footbed and sturdier leather in a variety of colors, elevating the classic style with contemporary comfort. Simultaneously, the shoes retain the appealingly versatile shape and grippy outsole that they’re known for.
Land-Rover x Clarks CLR 53.N Hi GORE-TEX — £159 EUR (approximately $180 USD)via Clarks.
Though they aren’t the first pair of Clarks to receive the GORE-TEX treatment this season, the collaborative Land Rover CLR 53.N Hi boots are the tallest of the bunch. Influenced by hiking footwear, the boots sport a breathable mesh upper and rugged rubber outsole, with serrations to help the wearer step through any wintery terrain. Meanwhile, a GORE-TEX lining guarantees dry feet, a necessity when the slush is nearly ankle-high.
YEEZY SEASON Combat — $320 USD via YEEZY SUPPLY.
Since the genesis of the YEEZY label, Kanye West has sought to perfect the silhouette of his boots. Military influences and earth tone colors consistently pervade each season’s footwear, but the shoes each offer subtle twists, with adjusted panels and revamped outsoles differentiating one collection from another. The latest boot selection to come from YEEZY SEASON includes sandy nubuck detailing and camouflage accents, with these combat boots serving as a clear indication of the polish that has been applied to the brand’s shoe design. Premium calfskin suede panels extend from the heel to toebox, with mesh paneling utilized for extra breathability.
ETQ Chelsea — $265 USD via Farfetch.
Amsterdam’s ETQ has focused on understated, staple footwear since it launched in 2010, with its Fall/Winter 2018 chelsea boots proving to be no exception. The streamlined shape offers a contemporary take on the classic laceless style, with a meaty lug sole adding some extra heft. Meanwhile, premium black grain leather underlines the high-end construction and timeless appeal.
Kiko Kostadinov x Camper Lab — $340 USD via Opening Ceremony.
Kiko Kostadinov is a rising star in menswear, garnering acclaim for his uniquely deconstructionist approach to workwear and suiting. Key to the designer’s styling are trim sweaters, anatomical outerwear, slouchy pants and beefy shoes, provided for Fall/Winter 2018 by Camper. The footwear label’s ‘90s Teix boot finds new life in a tonal colorway, with bulky rubber soles balancing the weighty leather and mesh paneling above. GORE-TEX lining and pull tabs on the laces add functionality to the hiking-inspired shoe.
Eytys Nikita — $332 USD via Farfetch.
Sweden’s Eytys goes to great lengths to create shoes with maximum visual impact, elevating conventional silhouettes with unconventional detailing. The Nikita boot is a clear example of this ethos, with an elasticated insert and tapered shaft recalling the sleek chelsea boots of the ‘50s and ‘60s, but undermined by a tall block heel, ridged outsole and slightly pointed toe. Despite the weighty profile, the shoes maintain a trim silhouette well-suited to a variety of wardrobes and stylistic tastes.
mastermind WORLD x Danner Hiking — $545 USD via UNKNWN.
mastermind’s collaboration with Danner yields a pair of logo-emblazoned Ridge boots, with the Japanese brand’s skull detailing and “MASTERMIND” embroidered across the lateral panels and heel. The boots sport a tonal makeup of brown and beige — instead of mastermind’s usual monochrome black — with “MASTERMIND WORLD” verbiage stitched onto the tongue. Like most other mastermind collaborations, the focus is on the bold branding instead of a reimagined design, with the usual rubber outsole appearing alongside bi-color laces and metal eyelets.
Heron Preston “Style” — $895 CAD (approximately $672 USD) via SSENSE.
Heron Preston has built a brand around reimagined utilitarian staples, tweaking everything from Carhartt workwear to sanitation department uniforms. For Fall/Winter 2018, the designer issued a pair of boots with a familiar silhouette, complete with a padded ankle and lug outsole. The all-black, premium leather upper adds luxurious flair to the functional design, with Preston’s signature graphic accents adding a playful touch; prints include “MADE IN ITALY,” “HERON PRESTON” and “PULL” on the rear pull tab.
Yohji Yamamoto x Dr Martens FW18 Combat — $865 USD via H Lorenzo.
Dr Martens is well-regarded for its iconic, hard-wearing boots. Yohji Yamamoto is known for his drapey, black clothing. Together, the pair have issued a multitude of revamped footwear over the years, ranging from stubby derbies to knee-high combat boots. One of Yamamoto’s many Fall/Winter 2018 collaborations, this season sees the legendary Japanese creative issuing a tall 10-hole boot, distinct the footwear label’s usual offerings. A serrated rubber outsole adds a rudimentary heft in place of the conventional Dr Martens outsole, with a medial side zipper allowing easy access to the tall shaft.
ROA FW18 Andreas — $490 USD via MR PORTER.
One of the more underappreciated brands of late, ROA has quietly provided sturdy hiking footwear for the trek-inclined since inception, with fans like ALYX’s Matthew Williams helping to bring the brand some notoriety in recent years. For Fall/Winter 2018, the Italian label continues to offer boots that reliably fuse airtight construction with pleasantly comfortable footbeds, making for a shoe that translates naturally from the mountain to the street. Colorful paint splatters bolster the boot with graphic appeal, while Vibram provides a custom outsole that grips icy cement and crumbly gravel with ease.
UNDERCOVER Cowhide Duck — $975 USD SSENSE.
Jun Takahashi’s UNDERCOVER has enjoyed a banner year, rich with acclaimed drops and collaborations. Although the various Nike sneakers and joint runway presentation with TAKAHIROMIYASHITA TheSoloist. were undeniable bright spots, the brand’s own releases remained as potent as ever, with Jun Takahashi tapping 2001: A Space Odyssey as a source of inspiration. These cowhide duck boots, however, belong to no single point of reference, instead reimaging a wardrobe staple into a premium, Japanese-made shoe. Reflective trim grants visual appeal, while a robust Vibram outsole guarantees that the boots are as tough as they are beautiful.