Best Buys

21 Best Men’s Snowboard Boots 2015-2016

Our favourite men's snowboard boots for the coming season

UPDATE: Check out our review of the 2018/2019 Best Snowboard Boots here

Any boot ‘review’ has to be taken with a pinch of salt. Unlike boards and bindings, you can’t really gauge what the best snowboard boots are for you just by trying a pair out for an afternoon. And even if you do speak to someone who’s properly tested a pair over time, everybody’s feet are different – can you ever be sure that what works for them will work for you?

“It sounds obvious, but the smartest move you can make is to try the boots on for yourself. Head down to your local snowboard shop and check out their range”

That’s not to say that any purchase has to just be a roll of the dice; there’s a lot you can do before buying to ensure you make the right decision. Firstly, most brands are very up front about what each model is designed for. If you like pootling around the pistes, for example, don’t go for a stiff beast. If you need something for a winter’s worth of park laps, make sure the pair you choose can handle sustained abuse. And whatever you do, don’t just get the best-looking pair – most of it gets covered by your binding anyway.

It sounds obvious, but the smartest you can make is to try the boots on for yourself. Head down to your local snowboard shop and check out their range, trying as many as you can in order to determine what feels best. Ask to have both feet properly measured, and take as much advice on board as you can. Lots of boots have different lacing systems, which can seem tricky at first, but the guys in the shop will ensure you get the fit just right.

We’ve gathered together the best models from the key boot brands, giving you an overview of what’s out there. Peruse our list, check out the full ranges, talk to the shops – but always remember to take your time. Buying the wrong board or binding is bad news, but with boots it’s potentially a disaster.

Get clued up with our guide to buying snowboard boots, then take a look at what’s good in 2015/16:

Scroll through the list to your heart’s content, or skip to your favourite brand using the links below.

adidasBurton | DC | DeeluxeFlow  | Nitro | Northwave | Ride | Salomon | ThirtyTwo | Vans

All photographs by Sami Tuoriniemi

Production: Ed Blomfield / Mike Brindley / Andrew Duthie / Sami Tuoriniemi


adidas Blauvelt Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

Click any image to enlarge

American pow-tamer Jake Blauvelt was adidas’ first big-name signing when they started making snowboard boots, and his signature design continues to be popular.

The adidas Blauvelt is a stiff beast of a boot, designed to stay responsive and supportive even when you’re maching it down steep faces. The outer shell also goes a little further up your leg, increasing your ability to manipulate the board under your feet quickly and decisively.

Fit-wise, there’s no compromise; the foam liner is heat-mouldable, and the speed lace is split into two zones to allow you to get that tight-but-not-too-tight feel.

At that price it’s one of the more expensive boots on the market – but if you’re going to be pushing your snowboarding on a regular basis, you need a boot that will always help you keep control. In that respect, the Blauvelt is worth every penny.


adidas Superstar Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

2015 is the 45th anniversary of the adidas Superstar trainer, and to mark the occasion they’ve taken its essence and adapted it into a snowboard boot. It worked well with the Samba, and it works well here.

The first thing you’ll notice is the shell toe, carried over from the street shoe but fully built in to the boot with no compromise on performance. Extra support and stiffness comes from the powerstrap, but if you prefer a more classic look then it’s easily removeable.Whether you go for the strap or not, this is one of the more unusual boots on the market – but we imagine that it’ll pick up a healthy following before long.

Oh, and if you haven’t yet watched the adidas team promo video that dropped with the boot’s launch, do yourself a favour and check it out now.


Burton Ion Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

Even for Burton, who have produced several long-standing boots with popular followings, the Burton Ion stands out.

It’s certainly one for those with bigger budgets, but choosing boots is definitely not a time to skimp – if they’re right for you, then it’ll be worth forking out a little more.

Given that it’s quite stiff, these are best suited to a confident rider who likes to push themselves, and will be ideal for anyone into high-end freestyle; in fact, the Ion is the boot of choice for much of the B’s team. The sole is thinner than average, making you closer and more in tune with your binding, but still protects your foot from impacts thanks to gel cushioning.


Burton Ruler Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

The Burton Ruler’s name writes a cheque that, fortunately, the boot itself is able to cash. It’s been around for some time, and ticks a lot of all-round boxes that make it suitable for anything the mountain has to offer.

One new feature for 2015/16 is the addition of a rubber area at the spine that is designed to grip your binding’s highback. The theory behind this is that the less your boot moves, the more enery transfers right into your hardware, so you’ll get an overall improvement in response.

The heat-mouldable liner features a furry lining, Thinsulate insulation and a heat-retaining layer under the foot, so you’ll stay warm and comfortable whatever the conditions. It also comes in a wider version, so just about anyone looking for one boot to ‘rule’ them all should have a peep at this.


DC Judge Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

The DC Judge is also an executioner, capable of swiftly dispatching the gnarliest lines with ease.

Two separate Boa coilers tighten the boot with laser accuracy, and the upgraded stainless steel wire (only found on DC’s high-end models) can take a real beating. Ditto for the ‘Superfabric’ construction, making this a boot you can really push to the limits.

The ventilation system helps to keep boot-stink to a minimum, aided by the moisture-wicking layer on the liner’s well-coushioned insole. An internal harness keeps your foot right where it should be, an no expense of comfort.

It’s not one for buttering around on, but take it where it’s supposed to go and you’ll be feeling the G’s, not the heel lift.


DC Phase Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

You don’t always (and indeed shouldn’t always) have to consider shelling out top dollar for your boots. Yes, a bad pair will be bad news, but the DC Phase will suit a lot of riders without cleaning them out.

The tech in this one is far more stripped back than that of the Judge, but is still more than comfortable and sturdy enough for your days and weeks on the mountain. The fleece lining and memory foam of the inner layer keep your feet happy, while the classicly-laced outer shell is versatile enough for all-round riding.

If you’re not that into clocking crazy speeds or launching off massive drops, then this will do nicely. It’s also a great option for those making their first forays into snowboarding, but are already looking long-term.


Deeluxe 9Six Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

20 years after they first appeared, Deeluxe boots will be going as strong as ever in 2016. The Deeluxe 9Six commemorates the milestone by paying homage to one of the company’s first boots, while updating the design with 21st century tech.

It’s definitely at the softer end of the scale, so buy this for jibbing rather than heli-drops. However, you can stiffen it up a bit by adding the ‘TPS’ shield’ to the tongue.

Either way it’ll give you a comfortable ride, and will keep your feet as warm and dry as any modern boot – especially if you pay a little extra for the premium liner.

The design incorporates plenty of doffs of the cap to mid-90s styles, the flat laces being a particularly nice touch. Deeluxe have also released a shoe version (the Afterhour 9Six), so look out for that too.


Deeluxe ID6.1 Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

The Deeluxe ID6.1 is actually the brand’s most popular boot, most likely thanks to its all-rounder credentials. It’s got a mid-level flex that can do it all, and you can even stiffen it up at your leisure by popping a ‘TPS shield‘ in the front.

To rogue water molecules, this boot is Fort Knox, and the reflective silver on the insole helps to retain the heat and keep you comfortable. If you shell out for the premium liner, the Moisture-tech membrane will do an even better job of tackling sweat – and therefore boot-stink.

You’ve got a choice of three different liners that vary the comfort (and price), so be sure to scope them all out and pick whichever suits you best. There’s a women’s version available too.


Flow Helios Hybrid Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

While best known for their rear-entry bindings, Flow also do a mean trade in boots. The Flow Helios Hybrid Coiler features a lacing system unique to the brand, where a single Boa wire is augmented with a speed-lace.

The latter is operated from the side of the boot and controls the area just above the instep, helping to keep your heel down all day no matter how hard you ride. As a mid-stiff number, this is quite versatile and would suit someone who likes to push the boat out a lot of the time, but who still wants the option of buttering around the piste.

There’s plenty of tech on display such as venting, added insulation, and a moisture-wicking liner that’s comfortable and supportive. Whether your problem is cold feet in the winter or sweaty feet in the spring, the Helios keeps them both at bay.


Flow Talon Focus Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

Almost all Flow boots feature the Boa wire system, but with different calibrations. Anything with ‘Focus’ in the name (including this one, the Flow Talon Focus) features two coils, each of which controls its own area of the boot. Combined with the speed system on the liner, this gives you plenty to experiment with until you’ve got just the right fit.

You’ll certainly want to be laced in securely if you’re using this right; make no mistake, this is a tough nut that’s built to charge. The outer shell is built out of high-strength Kevlar, and the waterproofing and insulation can withstand everything up to and including an Alaskan blizzard. The sole features both EVA and Vibram rubber dampening, so the foot fatigue once experiences during a day of pointing it will be reduced to a minimum.

This is the most expensive boot we looked at this year, which is bound to put some buyers off. However, if you’re serious about snowboarding then you can think of the Talon Focus as an investment – one you’ll get a good return on when the conditions allow.


Nitro Team TLS Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

The Nitro Team TLS is a high-end freestyle boot that will perform best when pointed down steep terrain or off the park’s larger features. It’s on the stiff side, but by taking out a section of the tongue you can soften it up a bit for those mellower days.

Air bubbles at the heel work well with the Vibram rubber sole in order to reduce impact. Even if you clip a few knuckles throughout the day, you’ll be able to dust yourself off rather than go seek out a footrub in the apres bar (there’ll be time for that later). Cold feet won’t be an issue either, as there’s a heat-retaining layer between the liner and the sole which reflects your foot’s warmth back towards it while simultaneously repelling the cold.

Of course, it’s called the Team because Nitro’s heavy hitters such as Eero Ettala and Sven Thorgren have been instrumental in its development (see also: the Team board and Team binding). The colour scheme you see here is Eero’s signature design, but there are no less than four others to choose from (including one with a classic lace instead of the TLS).

Nitro Ultra TLS Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

While the name might suggest the kind of maxed-out tech that breaks the bank, the Nitro Ultra TLS is actually more in the mid-range.

It’s definitely capable of playing on the big stuff, with an air-cushioned sole that absorbs nasty impacts. There’s also some extra rubber in there that works with the EVA to minimise foot fatigue in every scenario.

As you clock up the miles, your heel is held firmly in place thanks to an internal harness, so your legs never work harder than they have to. What’s more, typical warping caused by dorsiflexion (that’s the movement where your toes and shin move closer together as you flex down through the ankle) is reduced thanks to the way the upper and lower sections of the boot are connected.

The TLS speed-lace rounds off a versatile boot that’s lightweight but still packs a punch.


Northwave Decade SL Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

The Northwave Decade SL is aimed at the all-mountain rider who loves to get airborne whenever possible – be it on kickers, in the pipe or while exploring nature’s funpark. It’s picked up a healthy following, and is now the brand’s best-selling boot.

It’s supportive and responsive enough to handle high speeds, with a layer of webbing around the ankle keeping your heel secure at all times. If you loosen the speed-lacing system a little, that’ll ease off too, so you get a fully customisable fit.

If you’re using this properly, you might find yourself clipping a knuckle or coping – which is never fun. However, the EVA sole will minimise impacts, keeping you lapping the pro line for longer – and if this colourway doesn’t do it for you, there are three other options from which to choose.


Northwave Freedom SL Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

As the name suggests, the Northwave Freedom boot is about exploring options. Thanks to its relatively soft flex, no freestyle manoeuvre is off the table – although if you like clocking high speeds above all else, maybe look elsewhere.

The liner isn’t too flashy, but still ticks all the right boxes – there’s no seam at the toe, and the EVA footbed handles impacts and keeps you toasty. A webbing system takes care of heel lift, assisted by a loop that connects to the outer laces and goes right round the back of your heel.

The sole may be feather-light, but it’ll still grip your binding’s baseplate like a limpet – and it’s plenty durable, too. Everything you need in a freestyle boot, then – so lace this up in seconds, point it at some features and unleash hell.


Ride Anthem Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

The Ride Anthem will appeal to anyone who is looking for a do-it-all boot that also features the convenience of Boa wire lacing. The single coil system keeps things simple, and automatically retracts any loose wire when you unfasten it.

As for the inner boot, the heat-mouldable liner is comfortable and not too rigid, with J-shaped inserts to improve overall support while still complimenting the outer shell’s medium flex rating.

The Anthem also features Ride’s ‘In2grated’ construction, where the liner and shell have been constructed together to reduce the overall size and increase comfort and longevity.

Round it off with an EVA footbed and durable sole and you’ve got a solid, versatile boot that’s definitely built to last.


Salomon Dialogue Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

The Salomon Dialogue has become something of a modern classic. The one you see here is actually the wider version, and there’s also the option to get it with the Boa wire system.

Whichever you go for, the flex means it’ll handle big booters and high speeds without a worry, but isn’t so bastard stiff that you can only really charge. The liner – exclusive to the Dialogue – is designed with the trickologist in mind, allowing for flex and movement where you most need it while providing constant support.

The low-profile sole means reduced weight and increased board feel, and the unique material at the inside heel keeps your foot firmly secured by gripping to your sock without any irritation or rubbing.

If you go for this speed-lace version, you can control the upper and lower areas of the outer shell separately, giving you an accurate fit that lasts all day.


Salomon Launch Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

The Salomon Launch comes in a speed-lacing version, as well as a slightly stiffer Boa model, but right now we’re looking at the classic fat-lace Launch. It’s a popular look for park rats, and don’t be surprised to see a few pairs of these slaying features near you soon.

Thanks to its mellow flex, this is ideal for the whole park but especially getting creative on rails and tweaking those grabs. The sole is as light as they come, while still providing enough cushioning to keep your feet happy even after your 100th landing of the day.

As for heel lift, you can forget it thanks to the inner harness. If you like the idea of fat laces but are worried that you won’t get you the secure fit you’re after, take a look at the Launch.


Thirty Two PAS Lo-Cut Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

As part of their 20th anniversary celebrations – which includes the release of their first team movie, 2032 – Thirty Two have re-released one of their first ever models. PAS stands for Pierre André Senizergues, the founder of Thirty Two (and, as you may have guessed from the design, Etnies skate shoes).

The Thirty Two PAS Lo-Cut features a classic fat lace, which isn’t surprising for a throwback design. However, there’s also a speed-lace version available if that’s what you prefer. Elsewhere it’s a thoroughly modern beast, with a durable rubber sole and 3D-moulded tongue that offers a consistent flex.

It’s not the most hi-tech of boots, and therefore not the most expensive either. If you want something dependable and affordable that doubles as a tip of the hat to one of the best boot brands in the business, look no further.

Thirty TM-Two Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

Another fat-laced favourite from Thirty Two, this one is definitely suited to high-end freestyle.

The Thirty Two TM-Two’s stiffish flex means it can handle the big stuff, and there’s gel cushioning underneath your heel which will minimise the impact of big landings. The outer sole is made of a foam that’s both lightweight and durable, and you’ll be sure of a comfortable fit thanks to the 3d-mounded tongue and comfy liner.

The model you see here has plenty of the brand’s signature shade of vibrant orange, and is actually the colourway of Whitelines favourite Scott Stevens – part of his signature series of Thirty Two gear. It therefore follows that the TM-Two is just as suitable for ground-level one-foot shenanigans as it is for big kickers.


Vans Aura Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

Welcome back Vans; after a year out, the iconic skate brand returns to the snow – and just in time to celebrate the company’s fiftieth birthday.

With two Boa fasteners controlling the upper and lower sections of the Vans Aura independently, you’ll be able to customise your fit and keep it that way all day – as well as adjust the tightness quickly on the fly. There’s also a pad underneath the wires at the tongue that slides side-to-side, which you can adjust for a more even distribution of pressure.

The footbed is partially made of cork, which is both lightweight and absorbent (of impacts, not smells), and the heel is reinforced to handle those killer knuckle hits. As with all Vans boots, there’s also a special heat retention layer underneath the liner to keep cold toes at bay.


Vans Hi-Standard Snowboard Boot 2015-2016

Sharing its name with the style-heavy contest series that has graced the likes of Mayrhofen and the Cairngorms, the Vans Hi Standard is an easy-going freestyle boot that offers plenty of tweakability at an affordable price.

If breaking in a new pair of boots is something you dread, this could be the solution; with a heat-mouldable liner that provides subtle but effective reinforcement to the ankle, you’ll feel comfortable and secure in these from day one.

As you can see, the Vans Hi Standard boasts a classic lace, which is still the top choice for a lot of park rats. You’ll still get just the fit you like thanks to the locking system, but with the classic look and feel of a lace.

The sole features a waffle pattern – it is Vans after all – and is as durable as it is light, with extra reinforcement where you need it the most. Hi Standard, lo price…



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