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What are the best ankle boots?

Ankle boots are a versatile shoe style that belongs in everyone’s wardrobe. They can be casual, work-appropriate or dressy with flat, short or high heels. Simple additions can elevate their fit, such as an impact-resistant footbed for all-day support.

You can also get weatherproof designs with waterproof materials and enhanced traction to help you navigate wet, slippery conditions. The top ankle boots are high-quality, breathable, made from premium materials and durable, so you can enjoy them for years.

What are ankle boots?

Ankle boots land at or just above your ankle and come in many styles, such as platform, hiking and wedge. They are versatile because they give you warmth and protection in cold weather, but they’re also short enough to wear in warm weather without making you too hot. You can wear them nearly anywhere, with almost anything, as long as their style is appropriate for the occasion.

Types of ankle boots

Ankle boots for men and women come in eight styles that can completely transform their look, and yours.

  • Platform: This style has a thick sole from the heel to the toe.
  • Chelsea: These boots have elastic on the sides for a close-fitting ankle.
  • Combat: This military-inspired lace-up design has a thick, heavy outsole with a slight heel.
  • Rain or duck: These are made from seam-sealed waterproof materials to keep your feet warm and dry.
  • Cowboy: This iconic riding boot gives you a Western look and feel.
  • Moc toe: These classic boots have moccasin-style stitching on the toe box.
  • Chukka: These lace-up ankle boots are a timeless wardrobe staple you can dress up or down.
  • Hiking: This sturdy style is typically slip-resistant, lightweight and weatherproof.
  • Snow: These boots keep your feet warm with added insulation and give you enhanced traction for the ice and snow.
  • Wedge: This sturdy style gives you height with a wedged sole that falls toward the toe.
  • Heeled: These can make your aesthetic a bit dressier and vary in shapes and sizes, which lend to different stability levels.

Heel heights on ankle boots

Both men’s and women’s ankle boots have flat and heeled designs. There are five categories of heel heights.

  • Flat: These heels are less than 1 inch high.
  • Short: These are 1 to 2 inches tall.
  • Mid: These height-boosting heels are 2 to 3 inches tall.
  • High: These leg-elongating heels range from 3 to 4 inches tall.
  • Ultra-high: These sky-high heels are 4 inches tall or higher.

Best features on ankle boots

Finding stylish ankle boots is easy, but scoring a pair you can wear all day without experiencing pain or discomfort can be a little more challenging. There are four features to look for to ensure your shoes give you the support you need.

  • Nonslip outsole: Patterns and texture on the outsoles increase their grip on slippery, wet surfaces.
  • Durable construction: High-quality materials such as high-grain leather that gets better with time can give you a more comfortable fit and last longer.
  • Comfortable footbed: Padded footbeds with added flexibility and support can absorb the shock of each step and decrease the likelihood of giving you foot pain.
  • Water-resistance: While finding a completely waterproof ankle boot might be hard for some styles, features such as seam-sealed water-resistant materials can keep your feet warm and dry.

What are the best ankle boots to buy?

best Sorel Women's Evie Pull-on Bootie

Sorel Women’s Evie Pull-On Bootie

These classic wedge boots are made of waterproof leather and have a comfortable footbed for all-day support. They also have an enhanced-traction outsole and come in four colors.

Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods

best Free Soldier Men's Lightweight Military Boots

Free Soldier Men’s Lightweight Military Boots

These flexible boots are waterproof, breathable and highly durable. They have a shock-absorbent midsole for comfort and an all-terrain outsole for grip everywhere you go.

Sold by Amazon

best Sorel Women's Out 'N About III Classic Boot

Sorel Women’s Out ‘N About III Classic Boot

These seam-sealed leather and rubber waterproof snow boots have a soft footbed for added comfort and enhanced traction for stability. They come in 12 color combinations.

Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods

best Wolverine Men's Floorhand Steel Toe Workboot

Wolverine Men’s Floorhand Steel Toe Workboot

These steel-toe workboots are made from waterproof full-grain leather and have a thick rubber traction-enhanced outsole. They’re durable and come in six colors.

Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods 

best Clarks Women's Adreena Ease Ankle Boot

Clarks Women’s Adreena Ease Ankle Boot

These stylish leather zip-up boots have a 1.75-inch heel and shock-absorbent footbed that is moisture-wicking. They come in three colors.

Sold by Amazon 

best Clarks Men's Bushacre 2 Chukka Boot

Clarks Men’s Bushacre 2 Chukka Boot

These polished leather boots have a leather liner for added comfort and a textured rubber outsole for traction. They are lace-up and come in 15 colors.

Sold by Amazon 

best Ugg Women's Classic Ultra Mini Ankle Boot

Ugg Women’s Classic Ultra Mini Ankle Boot

These short suede and sheepskin boots are a cold-weather staple for their comfort, versatility and easy pull-on design. They have a soft insole with traction outsoles and come in 21 colors.

Sold by Amazon

best Rockport Men's Rugged Bucks Boot

Rockport Men’s Rugged Bucks Boot

These casual yet office-appropriate leather boots have a shock-absorbent footbed with added heel support to keep your feet from hurting. They are a lace-up design and come in two colors.

Sold by Amazon

best Asgard Women's Chelsea Rain Boots

Asgard Women’s Chelsea Rain Boots

These waterproof boots are made from lightweight rubber and have a foam footbed for all-day comfort. They are a slip-on design and come in 13 colors.

Sold by Amazon

best Xtratuf Performance Men's Rubber Ankle Boots

Xtratuf Performance Men’s Rubber Ankle Boots

These fishermen’s boots have a pull-on design and protect your feet from the water. They have nonslip outsoles and come in two colors.

Sold by Amazon

best Dr. Martens Unisex 1460 Slip-Resistant Service Boots

Dr. Martens Unisex 1460 Slip-Resistant Service Boots

Always in style, these iconic boots are great for their protective design and slip-resistant outsole.

Sold by Amazon

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Ella Scott writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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