Nothing is safe from the chilly onset of winter, and that includes your feet. Fortunately, a good pair of slippers will keep your toes nice and toasty. Warm slippers are an especially good idea if you have tile or wooden floors, which don't retain heat the way carpet does.
But what are the best slippers for you? The answer depends on factors ranging from your taste in design to how thick and warm you'd like the slippers to be. Some people like to basically walk around atop a pillow, while others prefer something with a lighter touch. The level of arch support in slippers can vary widely as well.
To help you make up your mind, we asked lifestyle and fashion bloggers, as well as a podiatrist, about which slippers shoot to the top of their recommendation lists. Listen to what they have to say before buying new slippers for yourself — or as a gift for that person in your life who could use a good pair.
Best Slippers for Women
Memory foam isn't just for pillows and mattresses anymore. Karen Lee, a San Diego-based researcher and founder of the online home resource Things Around the House, recently purchased the ULTRAIDEAS Memory Foam Slippers for her mother — and they're a big hit.
"My mom loves these slippers and finds herself walking outside with them still on her feet because of how comfortable they are, as well as the rubber-soled bottoms," she says. "For those people who need a little support from their slippers, this pair has a high-density memory foam that molds to your feet and helps your joints."
Gumbies Women's Outback Slippers: From $38
We can all strive to be more eco-conscious and to reduce our carbon footprint. So why not pick a slipper that's a product of recycling? Aqsa Tabassam, a self-described "techie who cares about clean energy, and recycling in manufacturing by companies" and the editor-in-chief of InsideTechWorld, has an earth-friendly idea for your feet.
"Gumbies Slippers are warm, lightweight, and cozy. The smooth uppers of these slippers are made-up of recycled bottles. Similarly, the soles of these slippers are prepared from recycled tires," says Tabassam. "Both men and women can wear these slippers. These look perfect for any event, and are available in different colors and sizes."
L.L. Bean may be best known for their coats and boots, but according to Lisa Arlington, the Westminster-based founder of the product recommendation website GiftsNerd, the company has some great slippers.
"These slippers are not just budget-friendly but also comfortable. These shoes are made of sweater fleece, which is definitely going to keep your feet warm and cozy during winters," says Arlington. "The solid sole of the shoe allows it to be worn outside the house and also for lounging inside. These comfy slippers are available in sizes 6 to 11 and are available in four colors; bright navy, gray heather, muted purple, and mountain red."
Best Slippers for Men
Pamela O’Brien, the principal designer for the Houston-based interior design company Pamela Hope Designs, knows you might be wondering why an interior designer would have thoughts about slippers.
"With the recent preferences for hard surface flooring, I have many discussions about comfort and warmth around the house. Clients remove wall-to-wall carpet and replace it with wood, tile or even vinyl and laminate," she explains. "This creates colder and harder surfaces for them to walk on. Often, the man of the house wants to keep carpet, at least in the bedroom while the woman wants hardwoods. A good pair of slippers can take the shock out of feet on a cold floor first thing in the morning."
O'Brien says that "my husband is an avid slipper-wearer. He even travels with them. Since he likes to ski, his The North Face insulated mules make the trip. They are rugged, warm and comfy and well-priced. He takes them along every time."
Acorn Men's Moc Slippers: From $33
Don't feel bad if you get sweaty feet. It happens to all of us, or at least all of us who wear thick slippers. If you're trying to keep your feet dry, Lee recommends Acorn's Moc Slippers.
"They’re comfy, sturdy, and are easy to slip in and out of," she says. "The soft fleece and faux fur will keep your feet warm and protected, while the moisture-wicking lining will keep the slippers fresh."
Ugg Chateau Slip-On: $209.99
If you're working from home and you're willing to spend a bit on style and comfort, then O'Brien recommends the Chateau Slip-On, which she bought for her husband.
"Since we live in a warmer climate, I bought him Uggs slippers for home. The sheepskin lining works great all year – keeping you cool or warm as needed," she says. "He wears them around the house all day. The Uggs Chateau slip-on is a bit of a splurge but he had his last pair of Uggs slippers for five years!"
Best Slippers for Kids
Crocs Kids' Classic Slipper: From $20
Are your kids also complaining about cold toes? Then Arlington recommends they get their little feet into some Crocs.
"They are cozy and at the same time fuss-free when it comes to slipping them on. If your child is aged between 1 to 4 years old, we’d highly recommend getting them these," she says. "These shoes are also designed for great traction control, which means you don’t have to worry about your child slipping when running around. The color range comes in five variations — navy, cerulean blue, candy pink, ice blue and charcoal — which means they’re meant for both your boys and girls."
Best Slippers for Plantar Fasciitis
Vionic Women's Indulge Relax Slippers: From $53
Plantar Fasciitis is the inflammation of the fibrous tissue along the bottom of your foot that connects your heel bone to your toes. If this is an issue you suffer from, Dr. Velimir Petkov, a podiatrist and owner of the New Jersey-based Premier Podiatry, recommends the women's Relax Slippers. They were originally sold under the Orthaheel name but are now sold as part of the Vionic brand.
"The Orthaheel Relax Slipper is a great slipper for women who are suffering from plantar fasciitis. The adjustable uppers allow for extremely comfortable fit. One of the great selling points of the slipper is its signature Tri-Planar motion control which prevents the wearer from causing her feet to turn inwards and cause the arches to collapse," he says. "Furthermore, the midsoles are reinforced with EVA materials, which allow for better shock absorption. The slippers are open-toed, which means that they can be worn in the summer and fall months but not so much in the winter months. Or they can be used indoors only throughout the whole year."
Vionic Maxwell Mens Canvas Slip On's: From $89.95
If you have foot issues and need extra support, then Dr. Velimir Petkov suggests you give Vionic Maxwell Slip On’s a look. "Vionic is one of the premier brands when it comes down to orthopedic shoes and slippers," says Dr. Petkov. "They do specialize in both men's and women's shoes and slippers. The Vionic Mens Maxwell Slippers are especially comfortable because they have a supportive biomechanical footbed which can prevent overpronation. Therefore, they are an excellent way to treat plantar fasciitis."
Dr. Petkov adds that "the outsole is made or rubber for better grip and control while walking outside the house. The slippers also have pronounced arches, which can help to get your feet in the neutral subtalar joint position, which would be ideal for your foot alignment."
If you have ankle issues that make footwear uncomfortable, then Dr. Petkov thinks that the Orthofeet Proven Plantar Fasciitis might be a good fit for you.
"Orthofeet is a great brand and they have great reputation regarding both diabetic and orthopedic shoe gear. The Orthofeet Asheville Men's Slippers are amazing because they have an adjustable strapping which can allow for patients to slip easily into the slipper regardless of whether their ankles are swollen or not," he says. "The slippers also have a soft lining which allow for very comfortable use. They also come with a rubber outsole for better grip and leather upper in order to allow for better insulation during winter months."