At U of I, we can’t get away with flip-flops year round. Our winters are long, brutal and require shoes that can get us through the slushy snow and keep our feet from freezing in single-digit temperatures. While all of us collegiettes may be loyal to our UGGs during the winter season, they can end up ruined by the snow and salt at the end of the winter, and we’ll have to spend yet another $200 on a new pair. And nobody likes slipping on the ice at the middle of Green Street. #embarrassing.
Being a college student in the Midwest, it is sometimes hard to find chic boots that also carry us through snow, rain, hail and any other winter weather, without having to spend a fortune.
Here are a few of my favorite options to keep you cozy and fashionable as you dash through the snow and make winter more bearable:
1. Stuart Weitzman “Snowflake” boot ($298 at Nordstrom)
Okay, so one look at the price tag might beat you up, but trust me on these; they’re definitely worth the price. They’re not only water-resistant, but also have faux-fur lining on the inside to keep your toes cozy. The buckles on the boots really toughen up the look, and these can easily be worn year-round. They even work great for nights out when your feet are just too cold in heels.
2. Old Navy Faux-Fur Trim Winter Boots ($59.94 at Old Navy)
These are the best bet for those on a tight budget, and they don’t actually look cheap. The faux fur will keep you warm while the bottoms are so slick they’ll keep you from sliding, so you can trudge your way to class and hold your ground. Pair these with skinny jeans (you’ll want the laces to show), a cozy cashmere cardigan and white T.
3. L.L. Bean Boots 8” ($89 at llbean.com)
If you love the short lace-up boot trend, you’ll absolutely love these chic boots. The great part about these shoes is that they don’t actually look like your typical winter boot, but the leather is waterproof and it has a sealed sole to keep you from slipping. It’s a win-win situation. Pair these with colorful tights or skinny jeans and a black blazer.
4. Timberland “Granby Tall Zip” ($170 at Piperlime.com)
These are your ultimate winter-weather boots. Not only are they tall enough to trudge through 5 inches of snow, but they’re also eco-friendly, with 30% recycled PET fleece lining to provide warmth and 42% recycled rubber outsole for traction. These are easy to slip on if you’re running late to class and they don’t look bulky at all. I’d pair these with black leggings and an off-the-shoulder sweatshirt. They comes in black or dark brown.
5. The North Face “Brianna” ($195 at Piperlime.com)
If you still can’t bear the thought of living without your UGGs for an entire season, these boots are the next best thing. These are made with Durable TNF Winter Grip rubber outsole to keep you from slipping (and you can make fun snow prints), as well as 100% recycled PET fleece and brushed tricot lining. They’re waterproof and will help keep your feet dry from the crisp wind. Another great year-round option that can easily transition from day to night.
As much as I hate to say it, winter is ahead, so stock up on these boots while you can, to brave the season in style.