Ok, so at Richard Smith we specialise in tailored garments and accessories for men. But we understand you can’t strut your stuff without a good pair of shoes on your feet to match your made-to-measure suit. And especially not in winter, when you have the perils of ice and snow to contend with as well as trying to look your best.
So, to help our discerning readers get ready for the worst of the winter weather, we decided to take a look down at the must-have features every winter shoe should have - as well as recommending some of our favourite styles for warding off the cold and wet this winter!
What to look for in your winter footwear Sole
The sole of your shoe is one of the most important considerations not only for handling slippery conditions without risking a fall, but also for remaining comfortable throughout the winter months. For walking on icy surfaces, a shoe with raised patterns or large treads is best, as this will help your feet get purchase on the ground.
Additionally, rubber soles tend to be the best at preventing slips and falls when walking over ice-covered surfaces, and are also good for insulating your feet from the cold.
An appropriate winter shoe keeps the warm in, and the wet out. Sturdy, long-lasting materials such as leather are the most common for winter shoes, and for good reason. Leather is waterproof, durable, and will keep your feet comfortable and dry even if you’re walking through snow. Not to mention, leather is a smart and sensible choice for the office, so you can easily transition from the outside to indoors with a sturdy pair of leather winter boots.
Wading through slushy ice and freezing puddles can quickly make your entire foot numb if you’re not wearing the proper footwear, and there is no worse way to start a day’s work than not being able to feel your feet for the cold!
To keep the warmth locked into your shoes, select a pair with linings specifically created for that purpose. Smart shoes are less likely to have dedicated thermal protection from microfiber linings than, say, hiking boots, but you can buy removable liners made from materials like Thinsulate, Primaloft and Zylex.
Snow and ice can be pretty to look at, but can be dangerous to walk in without the right gear - causing sprained or twisted ankles or worse if you’re not careful. A good pair of winter shoes will provide all the stability you need to confidently walk over slippery surfaces without a wobble.
Stability features to look for in your next pair include an insole to support your body weight, and a supportive heel cup that’s cushioned for your comfort. Also, consider ankle boots over traditional shoes - you are less likely to get ice and water seeping down into your socks, too.
Finally, you can have the best, most weather-resistant, durable pair of shoes on the market, but if they don’t fit you correctly, they’re worthless.
Your winter shoes should have a snug-fit, without too much room in the toes or heel. Too big a shoe will cause your foot to skid across slippery surfaces, no matter how good they are, so be sure to try your winter boots on and make sure they’re a good fit before venturing out into the snow!
Richard Smith Bespoke create the finest bespoke garments and occasion wear from our studio in Manchester city centre – with personality and passion. Contact us today to discuss your made-to-measure suit and accessories.