If you follow our monthly Strategist Haul, you’re familiar with the idiosyncrasies of our editors’ and writers’ shopping habits. While we think of those as the highlights, there are plenty of other, less glamorous things we buy — and love — on the regular too. So whether you’ve wondered about the work bags we tote around or the underwear we’re most loyal to, this is the Stuff We Buy Ourselves. In this edition, the winter boots our editors and writers rely on to get through sleet, slush, and snow.
Alexis Swerdloff, Strategist editor
I keep it classic with my thinsulate-lined Bean Boots. They’re as hardworking and practical as everyone says, and I like that the all-navy sort of blends into most outfits on days when I don’t feel like taking them off when I get to work.
Liza Corsillo, writer
For the last four years, I have worn my Blundstone boots on a regular basis from early October through late March. They’re easy to pull on and, when paired with some wool socks, they keep my feet dry and warm in all kinds of precipitation. But last winter, I got the itch to change things up. So I bought this pair of Sorel boots that look a lot like a certain pair of classic hiking boots. They’re what I wear when I want to stay dry and cozy but also look like an apres-ski influencer. I love the bright-red laces and the contrasting textures of the suede and leather.
Jessica Silvester, contributing editor
This season I decided I wanted an Ugg-like experience without paying for actual Uggs. That said, aside from their bulbous shape, these highly rated snow boots I found (and bought) on Amazon are not all that reminiscent of Uggs. But boy are they a great value for the price. Their breathable faux-fur lining, a waterproof exterior, and grippy, nonslip rubber soles make long treks through the damp woods of Westchester feel like you’ve got two heated massagers on your feet. Just do as I did and heed the warnings of other Amazon reviewers to go up a size, because they run narrow and small.
At full price, these boots actually cost more than Uggs, making them a slightly sleeker, higher-end dupe. But, right now, a range of the brand’s styles are on sale pretty much everywhere (Amazon, Nordstrom Rack, the Outnet). I got my classic short-height style for a hundred bucks. They feel very indulgent and just a touch nostalgic on my early-morning walks, like a modern-day nod to something an early-aughts Kate Hudson might wear. Plus, these go on easier than Uggs and fit true to size.
Jenna Milliner-Waddell, junior writer
Full disclosure: I wear these boots year-round. I wear them when it’s sunny and dry, when it’s raining, when it’s snowing, and even in the summer. I don’t spend enough time outside in wintery weather to warrant a heavier-duty boot, but if I did, I still might choose these. The soles are sturdy and have enough grip that I’m not gliding over icy grates or sliding on slush. They are also tall: I haven’t encountered a puddle or snow deep enough to run the risk of anything getting inside them. My favorite part about them is how relatively nice they look compared to other winter boots. I wear them with everything from jeans to dresses, to work and to dinner, and I never feel out of place — mostly because on any given day I can spot at least five people wearing the same ones.
Lauren Ro, writer
L.L.Bean’s shearling-lined duck boots keep my feet toasty and dry as promised, and they’re good for stomping through inches of freshly fallen snow. But I think they’re really best for powdery days, not necessarily for everyday wear. The shearling lining is really nice, but it makes them a bit heavy and bulky. And I find that the traction on them isn’t great when it’s super icy out. That’s why I am eyeing a pair of thermal Blundstones to wear more regularly this coming winter.