5 Functional (and Stylish) Shoes to Wear This Winter

Just when you thought that you escaped a snowy winter, the weather has taken a blizzardy turn for the worse. Instead of strolling around in a T-shirt and pair of shorts — as you did just a few weeks ago — you are officially bundled in so many layers you lost count and dodging black ice in a pair of frumpy snow boots. Sure, the unfortunate forecast is preventing you from sporting those single-soled, traction-free leather brogues you got for Christmas this year, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend the whole season looking like you’re about to hit the slopes.

1. Sturdy lace-ups

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Source: Amazon.com

For the slipperiest of days, having an ultra-thick sole is mandatory. After all, nobody wants to slip in front of date or potential employer. Enter these Dr. Marten lace-ups. Not only does the air-cushioned sole promises a slight platform without jeopardizing your masculinity, it also boasts enough grooves to ensure some serious traction against the pre-salted pavement. As an added bonus, the leather and cloth won’t deteriorate as easily as your precious suede kicks.

2. Sleek, slip-free Chelsea boots


Source: Bloomingdale’s

Introduced by English shoemaker J.Sparkes-Hall for Queen Victoria, the Chelsea boot oozes sophistication. But before you write these off as being only suitable for the dry, fuss-free weather, consider these Cole Haan boots a weather-friendly option. The buttery leather is waterproof, which will combat that post-snow slush. As an added bonus, the soles are treated with special technology that marries a comfortable fit, flexibility, and reduced weight together. Sleek and practical? We’re sold.

3. Waterpoof chukkas

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Source: Amazon.com

Less formal than a brogue but more polished than a sneaker, chukka boots (or desert boots) are perfect for date night with your beau or casual Fridays at the office. Since they usually boast a suede exterior, chukkas aren’t notorious for being blizzard-compatible. But, thanks to these Timberland kicks, desert boots have the ability to be a great option for the winter. While this may look like any other leather shoe to the untrained eye; however, the major selling point for these is the boot’s membrane, which is waterproof to keep your foot comfortable and dry during a long day outdoors. Plus, these kicks’ laces are 100% recycled nylon and re-engineered to stay tied, which is perfect because re-securing your laces in the midst of a massive snow storm is not appealing.

4. Dressy, weather-friendly brogues

Source: Nordstrom

Heading to a fancy black-tie event but don’t want to slip on black ice like a winter rookie? Sure, you could bring your practical snow boots and hide them in coat check (but that’s a lot of effort), or you could invest in some rubber-soled lace-ups. Formal meets functional with these from Johnston & Murphy. Though the sole’s grooves aren’t as prominent as the Dr. Martens pair, the rubber bottom will make getting around a lot easier. And — as if you needed another reason to give these a seal of approval– the leather exterior is waterproof, which will make sporting these in the other three season a definite possibility.

5.  An elevated snow boot


Source: MrPorter.com

We know what you’re thinking: The first four options are amazing — and I’ve already ordered them in my size — but what about a stylish pair of snow boots? Though having brogue and Chelsea boots with rubber soles are perfect for those slick mornings, having some kicks that will keep your ankles and calves warm are sometimes necessary. Feast your eyes on the Caribou boots from Sorel: The full-grain leather is water proof while the fur interior will keep your legs warm when it’s below zero. Plus, the outsoles are made of a special AeroTrac™ material that is geared to keep your steps steady without feeling like you’ve tied weights to your boots. A winter miracle? We sure think so.

Follow Kelsey on Twitter @KMulvs

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