First, you need to determine exactly which rain boots w […]
First, you need to determine exactly which rain boots will best suit your needs in the environment where you are walking, working, or hiking. Traditional rain boots are often a very noticeable category due to their sleek look, rubber or neoprene shaft, minimal outsole, and often bright or patterned colors. Specific to rain, these types of boots are not made to compete with boots made for heavy snow or hiking. Furthermore, their rather simple and straightforward construction rarely covers all the preferred comforts of everyday footwear.
In their most basic form, they're designed to keep your feet dry in wet conditions, and often include features that let you put your boots on and off easily, such as pull tabs and heel nubs. Boot materials can range from treated neoprene to standard vulcanized rubber. Vulcanization means that the rubber has been treated to increase strength and elasticity.
Also, rain boots are usually made of synthetic rubber, not natural rubber, and have simple thin nylon or cotton inner lining, or no lining at all. The fancier the design, the more perks or accessories to put in, such as buckles or laces. Sometimes you'll come across hybrids that add significant insulation for cold weather. Most of the boots we've tested have a more traditional mild-weather approach, ideal for temperatures between 40 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit, with a basic shaft and little insulation.