Best snowboard boots

Best Snowboard Boots 2019-2020 (Men and Women)

Here is our list of picks and snowboarding boot reviews of the best snowboard boots for men and women for the 2019-2020 season.

In this comprehensive article we put forth the best snowboard boots broken down by riding style/terrain including options for all mountain, freeride, and freestyle and park riders.

If you're like me, one of the first things I do when shopping is decide which lacing system I prefer.  So for your convenience we've included options with speed lacing, traditional lacing, and BOA lacing for each of the riding style/terrain categories covered.

Read on to get a rundown of our top picks for the best snowboard boots.  Go ahead and use the Quick Navigation to skip to your preferred riding style/terrain or jump to the sortable feature comparison table to get an overview of all the recommended boots.

If you're new to snowboarding or just want to brush up on how to choose snowboard boots then please use the Quick Navigation below to skip on down to get the information you need to help you decide.  


Snowboard Boots Reviews & Picks


Best All Mountain Snowboard Boots

Here are our snowboarding boots reviews of the top picks for the best all mountain snowboard boots including speed lacing snowboard boots, traditional lacing snowboard boots, and Boa snowboard boots.

All Mountain Speed Lacing Snowboard Boots

These are our picks for best all mountain snowboard boots equipped with speed lacing.

Burton Ruler (Men's)

Burton Ruler (Men's)
  • Flex: Medium
  • Lacing: Speed

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Ruler is a longstanding staple that Burton has continually improved over the years and it is full of some great technology.

With the Burton Ruler, riders will feel confident dropping in from the top, carving through the groomers, and riding it straight through the park.

If you’re looking for a dependable boot that will keep your feet warm and comfortable throughout the day and perform all over the mountain then the Burton Ruler is one of the best snowboard boots for all mountain with speed laces.

These also come in a Burton Ruler BOA version.

If you're looking for more details on the Burton Ruler then check out our full review: Burton Ruler Snowboard Boots Review.


Burton Limelight (Women's)

Burton Limelight (Women's)
  • Responsible Collection: Certified B-Corp
  • Closure: Speed Zone Lacing powered by New England Ropes
  • Liner: Imprint 2, 3M Thinsulate
  • Thermo-moldable Liner: yes
  • Liner Closure: Lock-Up Cuff (hook-and-loop)

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The fit of the Burton Limelight has been built from the ground up to be specific to the anatomy of women's feet and customized to the way you ride.  We chose the Limelight boots specifically for their flex, warmth and all-terrain riding performance.

The key features are the speed zone lacing system for dual zone adjustability in medium flexing boot offering solid response while remaining comfortable for all day fun.

The liners are heat-moldable for a comfortable custom fit. Foot bed liners have a heat reflective foil to keep your toes and feet warm in cold weather conditions.

If you really like what you hear but you prefer a BOA coiler system then you should consider the Burton Limelight BOA version.


All Mountain Traditional Lacing Snowboard Boots

These are our picks for best all mountain snowboard boots equipped with traditional lacing.

Thirtytwo Lashed (Men's and Women's)

Thirtytwo Lashed (Men's)
  • One of the most recognized boots in the world, the Lashed lives up to its expectations. Ultimate fit with the...
  • Traditional Lacing system with an Team Internal Harness on the liner.
  • Team Fit Liner: Constructed with dual density intuition foam formulated for medium support, flex, and enhanced comfort....
  • Flex: 6/10 Medium Flex - Best for urban, park, free style all mountain.

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Sale
Thirtytwo Lashed (Women's)
  • One of the most recognized boots in the world, the Lashed lives up to its expectations. Ultimate fit with the...
  • Traditional Lacing system with an Team Internal Harness on the liner.
  • Team Fit Liner: Constructed with dual density intuition foam formulated for medium support, flex, and enhanced comfort....
  • Flex: 6/10 Medium Flex - Best for urban, park, free style all mountain.

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Thirtytwo Lashed (Men's and Women's) is one of the most popular boots available and for good reason. It shares some of the same design technology as Thirtytwo's pricier TM-two model but with a slightly softer flex for greater tweakability all over the mountain.

This makes getting into those butters just a little easier while making this boot an all mountain freestyle beast. The Lashed is known for being an extremely well-rounded boot with the perfect combination of fit and flex in a durable yet lightweight design.

One of the best features of the Thirtytwo Lashed is the ability to customize the fit of the internal liner. This is possible through the combination of heat moldable liners, internal harness lacing system, and heel hold system.

The "Team Fit" Intuition® liners are fully heat moldable. To lock in the fit of the top of the liner there's an adjustable Velcro power-strap. The internal lacing harness wraps around the liner and allows you to adjust the support right at the ankle.

The heel hold system consists of thin foam rings that act as shims for your ankle sizing. Thirtytwo includes two sets at different thicknesses so you can dial in the tightness right at the ankle. The shims fit into little pockets on the liner at the ankle bones at the sides of your foot.

To support your feet the Lashed boots are equipped with molded footbeds that cradle your heel and support your arch.

The Lashed is the perfect traditional laces boot if you're looking for a medium flexing boot with a fully customizable fit for performance, comfort, and heel hold.

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon: Thirtytwo Lashed (Men's) and Thirtytwo Lashed (Women's)

We've reviewed the traditional lacing version above but you may want to also check out the Boa lacing versions Thirtytwo Lashed Boa (Men's) and Thirtytwo Lashed Boa (Women's).


All Mountain Boa Lacing Snowboard Boots

These are our picks for best all mountain snowboard boots equipped with Boa lacing.

Rido Lasso (Men's)

Ride Lasso (Men's)
  • Flex: Medium
  • Lacing: Boa

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Ride Lasso comes equipped with a rugged outsole made from Michelin brand rubber that gives some serious durable traction.  The boot's medium flex provides good heel to toe response but you're still able to move laterally for tweakage and all mountain freestyle. There's an antimicrobial layer on the liner to reduce odors.

They've added a heat reflective foil layer at the sole of the boot to help keep the heat inside the boot.  The Ride Lasso will keep your feet warm and comfortable while the medium flex and unique BOA heel hold adjustability makes this boot an awesome all mountain performer.

If you're looking for more details on the Ride Lasso then check out our full review: Ride Lasso Snowboard Boots Review.


Ride Hera (Women's)

Ride Hera (Women's)
  • Flex: Medium
  • Lacing: Boa

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Women's Ride Hera is similar in design to the Men's Lasso discussed above.  The differences are primarily in the liner and sole of the boot.  There's a woman specific liner with splits at the back top to make it a little easier to get the boot on especially if you've got athletic calves.

The sole is built with durable rubber construction and an internal high rebound EVA midsole. This gives Improved heel contour for reduced heel drag and better walkability in all terrain.

Here's a summary of the Hera's feature highlights:

  • Medium flex for all-mountain performance
  • Ride Tongue Tied BOA Closure System uses dial on side of boot which tightens the tongue right over the ankle to get great heel hold
  • Liner has antimicrobial coating to reduce odor from sweaty feet
  • Heat reflective foil inside the sole of the boot to keep heat in and your feet warm
  • Lace guides attached to the tongue to distribute lace tension more evenly
  • Closure mechanism on liner clips to tongue to offer support as you pull the cord which helps get the lacing system tight

Best Freeride Snowboard Boots

Here are our snowboarding boots reviews of the top picks for the best freeride snowboard boots including speed lacing snowboard boots, traditional lacing snowboard boots, and Boa snowboard boots.

Freeride Speed Lacing Snowboard Boots

These are our picks for best freeride snowboard boots equipped with speed lacing.

Burton Ion (Men's)

Burton Ion (Men's)
  • LACING: Speed Zone Lacing System, Powered by Burton Exclusive New England Ropes with a Lifetime Warranty
  • FLEX / RESPONSE: 1:1 Firm Flex PowerUP Tongue
  • COMFORT: Total Comfort Construction, Outer Pressure Relief Panel, Snow-Proof Internal Gusset
  • LINER: Life Liner, DRYRIDE Heat Cycle Lining, Ultralon Performance Foam, Hook-and-Loop Closure, Tuff Cuff
  • CUSHIONING: AutoCANT, Sleeping Bag Reflective Foil, ReBounce Cushioning

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Burton Ion snowboard boots come with traditional lacing and are all about stiffness and response to support the needs of the most aggressive freeriders. That stiffness comes from a stiff and durable outer shell and a firm flexing 3D molded tongue.

Given these are a premium boot Burton has gone all the way to ensure they are designed to be super comfortable out of the box, warm, with awesome cushioning and board feel to balance out that stiffness.

The Ion is a premium boot that delivers the needed stiffness and response to charge steep fast lines without sacrificing comfort and warmth.

If you're looking for more details on the Burton Ion then check out our full review: Burton Ion Snowboard Boots Review.

The Burton Ion boots are also available in a Burton Ion Leather version for some unique style and a Burton Ion Boa version if Burton's Speed Zone lacing isn't for you.


Burton Supreme (Women's)

Burton Supreme (Women's)
  • Responsible Collection: Certified B-Corp
  • Upper Material: synthetic
  • Closure: Speed Zone with New England Ropes
  • Liner: Life Liner with DRYRIDE
  • Thermo-moldable Liner: yes

Last update on 2020-10-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Burton Supreme snowboard boots are high performance freeride boots for women designed to be comfortable right out of the box and equipped with plenty of tech to keep your feet warm.

The liners utilize Burton’s Dry Ride Heat Cycle™ technology which uses carbon threads selectively interwoven among normal fibers. Since carbon is a good heat conductor it acts to distribute the heat throughout the liner.

Another welcome feature is the liners include Burton’s Plush Cuff 2.0. This unique feature takes into account the variation in the shapes and sizes of women’s calves. The design includes relief for your calf and the liner can stretch to accommodate larger more athletic calves more comfortably while still working just as well for smaller to normal sized calves.

Burton Supreme snowboard boots are for aggressive intermediate to advanced female riders that need a stiff boot with a quick response to power their freeriding ambitions.

The Supreme’s include a 3D molded tongue that is medium flexing which optimizes the response for women and how you ride.

The outsole is what Burton calls the PodBED outsole which enhances comfort with any binding rather than specifically with just Burton's EST bindings.

Another nice thing from an environmental conservation standpoint is the sole is made with 10-15% recycled rubber content.

With the Burton Supreme snowboard boots you’ll enjoy plush comfort and warmth that is paired up with incredible performance and response which is why it is our pick for the best freeride snowboard boots with speed laces for women.


Freeride Traditional Lacing Snowboard Boots

These are our picks for best freeride snowboard boots equipped with traditional lacing.

Thirtytwo TM-2 (Men's and Women's)

Thirtytwo TM-2 (Men's)
  • The perfect mix of support, flex and comfort the TM2 is a favorite of Scotty Stevens. Minimal and modern with Overmold...
  • Traditional Lacing system with an Performance Internal Harness on the liner.
  • Perfomance Fit Liner: Constructed with dual density intuition foam maximizing support and stiffness while providing...
  • Flex: 7/10 Medium Flex - Best for all types of riding (urban, park, freestyle, all mountain, and backcountry)

Last update on 2020-10-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Thirtytwo TM-2 (Women's)
  • The TM2 is the perfect mix of support, flex and comfort. Minimal and modern with Overmold durability charge the whole...
  • Traditional Lacing system with an Performance Internal Harness on the liner.
  • Perfomance Fit Liner: Constructed with dual density intuition foam maximizing support and stiffness while providing...
  • Flex: 7/10 Medium Flex - Best for all types of riding (urban, park, freestyle, all mountain, and backcountry)

Last update on 2020-10-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Thirtytwo has been manufacturing snowboard boots since 1995, and they were started up by snowboarders, because who else knows what a snowboarder wants and needs more than another snowboarder.

The TM-2 series is available in models designed for both men and women.  Just like all other Thirtytwo products, it has been thoroughly tested by some of the best snowboarders in the world for both comfort and performance.

These boots are designed to have a medium-stiff flex, which helps to provide the rider with solid support, but it still flexes enough to allow freestyle and park riding These are for freeriders looking for that perfect balance between medium and very stiff flex.

Thritytwo uses their performance level liner with the TM-2 series.  These utilize dual density Intuition foam to strike that desirable medium-stiff balance.

The liners also feature a heel hold kit for ultimate heel hold.  The heel hold kit consists of circular foam spacers that can be inserted into the ankle area of the liner for a customized fit.

On the outsole they chose a STI foam to help make the boots lighter and provide good cushioning.  Then they added high performance rubber in strategic locations on the sole to make the boot more durable and add extra grip.

The bottom line is these boots will give you the control, power, and support you need to charge the craziest lines and stick out heavy landings.

Keep in mind that although the medium-stiff flex satisfies many freeriders, if you are looking for a very stiff boot then you should consider other options on our list.

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon: Thirtytwo TM-2 (Men's) and Thirtytwo TM-2 (Women's)


Freeride Boa Lacing Snowboard Boots

These are our picks for best freeride snowboard boots equipped with Boa lacing.

Ride Insano (Men's)

Ride Insano (Men's)
• Stiff-flexing allowing for maximum response
• Intuition Dream Liner for a heat moldable custom fit
• Slime Tongue features strategically injected urethane to reduce chatter
• Michelin Peak Sole provides excellent rubber sole traction
• Dual Focus BOA Closure System for a customized fit

Last update on 2020-10-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Ride Insano snowboard boots are stiff-flexing and designed to protect your feet like a steel cage, yet still be quite comfortable. The stiff flex is meant to give the rider a quick response for performing in critical freeriding situations.

You may worry that the stiffness means that they will not be comfortable. However, this is not the case. They come equipped with high-end intuition liners to keep your feet warm while comfortably wrapping around your foot and protecting it.

The tongue is reinforced with urethane plastic, which helps with comfort and support for your feet while out on the mountain all day. Ride chose to use a Michelin branded performance rubber sole to help provide the rider with awesome all terrain traction.

The bottom line is this boot is designed to provide you with ultimate comfort while giving the response that can only come from a very stiff boot. 


Best Freestyle Snowboard Boots and Best Park Snowboard Boots

Here are our snowboarding boots reviews of the top picks for the best freestyle snowboard boots and best park snowboard boots including speed lacing snowboard boots, traditional lacing snowboard boots, and Boa snowboard boots.

Freestyle and Park Speed Lacing Snowboard Boots

These are our picks for best freestyle and park snowboard boots equipped with speed lacing.

Burton Swath (Men's)

Last update on 2020-10-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Burton Swath snowboard boots are a versatile option for freestyle and park riding.

They have a sleek design that uses Burton’s unique Ultraweave material which removes the need for bulky seams over a large area of the outer shell. This seam-reducing design along with an EVA outsole result in a lightweight snowboard boot with medium-flexing performance.

The Swath are an excellent choice for freestyle and park riders looking for a bit more support for bigger jumps without over-sacrificing range of motion.

The design uses an articulated cuff and 3D molded tongue which team up to give you the needed range of motion and balanced support for big tricks. The articulated cuff also allows the boots to maintain consistent flex even as they break in.

To lock your heel in there’s an internal heel hold lace system that when tightened focuses the tension on the ankle area of the liner which pulls it into the heel of the boot. This provides you with focused heel hold adjustability beyond the dual-zone speed lacing system which controls the upper and lower zones of the boot shell.

Burton’s Imprint 3 liners are included with the Swath snowboard boots and are quite capable of providing solid comfort, warmth and a performance driven fit.

To provide an extra layer of impact protection Burton has included their ReBounce cushioning within the boot directly below your foot. They have also wrapped it in a heat-reflective material to help keep the cushioning soft and effective even at low temperatures.

One thing to watch out for with EVA outsoles is traction and durability. This is of particular concern to freestyle and park riders that may be doing a lot of hiking. Burton has overcome this concern by including rubber inserts in the heel and forefoot. This gives needed traction while keeping weight down.

Burton Swath snowboard boots are a great option for freestyle and park riders that like a medium flex in a lightweight sleek design that maintains good range of motion.


Burton Ritual LTD (Women's)

Burton Ritual LTD (Women's)
  • LACING: Speed Zone Lacing System Powered by Burton Exclusive New England Ropes
  • LINER: Imprint 3 Liner with DRYRIDE Heat Cycle Lining, Focus Cuff, and Plush Cuff 1.0
  • OUTSOLE/CUSHIONING: DynoBITE EST Outsole with ReBounce Cushioning, Sleeping Bag Technology and Recycled Rubber Content
  • FLEX AND RESPONSE: Articulating Cuff, GripLITE Backstay, and 1:1 Soft Flex PowerUP Tongue
  • FLEX RATING: Medium, 5/10

Last update on 2020-10-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Burton Ritual LTD is essentially the women’s version of the Burton Swath reviewed above. Check out that review for additional details on the tech included in these boots.

The main difference with the Ritual LTD is the performance and fit are customized from the bottom up for women and the way they ride.

Two key features to appreciate include:

  • Softer flexing tongue customized for women 
  • Liners utilize neoprene stretch zones and a plush fur lining for a calf conforming comfortable fit

Similar to the Swath, the Burton Ritual LTD excels for freestyle and park riders looking for more support for larger jumps while maintaining good flex and range of motion for tweakage.


Freestyle and Park Traditional Lacing Snowboard Boots

These are our picks for best freestyle and park snowboard boots equipped with traditional lacing.

Thirtytwo Lo-Cut (Men's)

Thirtytwo Lo-Cut (Men's)
  • Team internal harness
  • Performance rubber outsole
  • Heel hold kit
  • 3D molded tongue

Last update on 2020-10-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The first thing you’re likely to notice about the Thirtytwo Lo-Cut snowboard boots is they look like skate shoes.  The styling and rubber outsole design give a street feel that looks great walking around in.

But do they have the performance that you need to kill the park? Oshould you be worried they offer little more in terms of support and comfort than a pair of classic Converse hightops?

No need to worry.  With these boots Thirtytwo has done a great job of striking the right balance between fit, form, and function to make a great pair of boots for park and freestyle riders.

I already discussed the form so let’s proceed to fit and function.

The Lo-Cut boots are equipped with Thirtytwo’s Team Fit dual density Intuition foam liners.  Included is a velcro power strap at the top that allows you to get them nice and snug at the top.  But they don’t have a lacing closure system integrated into the liner.  This is because the liners fit into the internal heel hold lacing system that is built into the boots.

This internal lacing system cradles the liners and pulls your foot into the heel of the boot when tightened.  Also included with the boots is a heel hold kit which consists of foam rings that act as shims to adjust the fit of your ankle.  The rings slide into pockets attached to the inner and outer side of the liners.

The flex is on the lower end of medium which many park riders appreciate.  It gives enough support to hit bigger features while not inhibiting movement too much for taking off and landing from a variety of body positions while pulling off tricks.  This is due to the cutout in the shell at the top of the calf which allows a little more flex and the even flexing 3D molded tongue.

One drawback is the rubber sole is going to be a bit heavier than an EVA foam sole.  But the upside is it gives great grip and durability compared to foam.

Overall the Thirtytwo Lo-Cut is a great choice for park and freestyle riders looking for a stylish boot that is equipped with enough tech to perform well without being too stiff or uncomfortable.


Thirtytwo Zephyr (Women's)

Last update on 2020-10-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Thirtytwo Zephyr is a medium-soft flex boot that’s built to have a great fit and be comfortable all day as you take your laps through the park.

They come equipped with Thirtytwo’s Team Fit dual density Intuition foam liners. These liners include a strap at the top with a velcro closure to keep them nice and tight without loosening throughout the day. The liners fit into an internal heel hold lacing system that is secured to the inside of the boots. A heel hold kit consisting of foam rings that act as shims to dial in the fit of your ankle are included.

The outsole is EVA foam which offers nice cushioning and keeps the weight of the boots down quite a bit compared to a typical rubber outsole.

They feature an articulated cuff that helps the boots flex reliably and improves durability by eliminating shell distortion.

A great choice for park and freestyle riders looking for a lightweight, comfortable boot, with a slightly softer flex for good range of motion.


Freestyle and Park Boa Lacing Snowboard Boots

These are our picks for best freestyle and park snowboard boots equipped with Boa lacing.

Burton Swath BOA (Men's)

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Best for freestyle/park riders preferring a medium flex in a lightweight sleek design that maintains good range of motion with BOA closure

See review of speed laces version at the beginning of this section for more on what to expect from the Burton Swath BOA and why it is a great choice for freestyle/park riders.


Burton Felix BOA (Women's)

Burton Felix BOA (Women's)
  • LACING: Dual Zone Boa System, Coiler Technology, Lockdown Technology, Powered by Burton Exclusive New England Ropes with...
  • FLEX / RESPONSE: 1:1 Medium Flex PowerUP Tongue
  • COMFORT: Total Comfort Construction, Snow-Proof Internal Gusset
  • LINER: Imprint 3 Liner, DRYRIDE Heat Cycle Lining, Focus Cuff, Hook-and-Loop Closure, Plush Cuff 1.0
  • CUSHIONING: ReBounce Cushioning, Sleeping Bag Reflective Foil, Women's-Specific True Fit Design

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Burton Felix snowboard boots are an excellent option for female riders looking for a high performance and versatile freestyle and park boot.

These boots are medium flexing which offers enough support to hit larger jumps and stick out the landings and come equipped with a dual-zone BOA closure mechanism.

The lacing system is unique in that it squeezes the shell of the boot together with laces that attach in the ankle area of the shell.  This paired with an internal lacing system which help keep your heel/ankle locked into the back of the boot.

Burton didn’t stop here and has packed this boot with several of their other great features to help make the boot comfortable and warm.  These include their Imprint 3 liner, reflective foil insulation and Rebounce cushioning system.  They finish off the design with an EVA outsole to keep weight down but have included rubber inserts at the forefoot and heel for extra traction and durability.

All an all this boot will be beloved by riders looking for a premium boot with a medium flex to help push their limits in freestyle and park riding.


How to Choose Snowboard Boots?

There's nothing worse than the feeling of sitting on the lift with your foot cramping up in your boot after a lap or two. Then as you approach the unloading ramp at the top the cramping is to the point where you're seriously considering just staying on the chair and riding it back down.

This is why choosing a snowboard boot that is comfortable for you but brings the performance too is such an important decision. If your boots aren't comfortable then you're not going to have fun and you'll probably end up in the lodge warming your toes while your friends are out there hitting it hard.

No one wants to be that guy!

With so many choices available it can be confusing or even overwhelming for some of you when trying to decide how to choose snowboard boots. Especially if this is your first pair, since you don’t want to spend a bunch of money on some boots that hurt your feet or that won’t work well with you as you progress.

My advice can help make the process easier and lessen the chance of making a poor decision, but in the end, there is no substitute for trying them on and ultimately getting on the slopes with them.

One trick is to first consider how you intend to use them along with your current ability level and expected progression potential. Once you decide on these aspects you can go on to learn which features and technical specifications tend to lend themselves to your intended use. You’ll also learn about how to size and break in your boots which are both quite important to the long-term comfort of the boot.

Read on and I’ll start by walking you through becoming familiar with three general categories of riding style and terrain. Getting a grip on this topic will help you be more specific regarding how you intend to use your snowboard boots which will greatly narrow down the choices to a general category of boots you should be most considering.

Riding Style and Terrain

When learning how to choose snowboard boots it is often helpful to keep in mind your preferred riding style and typical terrain that you’ll ride. This helps give a frame of reference while considering all of the performance and usability choices available.

The three main categories of riding style and terrain to consider include:

  • All Mountain
  • Freeride
  • Freestyle/Park

To learn more about these categories and get help discovering your style check out our post on Snowboarder Styles and Gear Selection.

Flex Rating

Manufacturers often rate the flex of their boots on a scale of 1 – 10 (Soft Flex – Stiff Flex). It is important to understand that the term flex should be considered a subjective term used to describe the overall “feel” of a pair of boots rather than being a scientifically measured performance metric.

Since flex is a subjective term, we should expect that each manufacturer may have their own concept of what that feeling is. In other words, a flex rating of 5 at one manufacturer may not be the exact same as a 5 flex rating at another. But as long as we keep in mind that flex is a feeling, we can still make general comparisons between manufacturers. In our reviews we use qualitative words to describe boot flex like soft flex, medium flex, and stiff-flex which we feel is truer to the subjective nature of flex descriptions.

A soft flexing boot may be described as being less responsive and providing a more surfy feel when riding. On the other hand, a stiff boot is described as being more responsive. Each extreme has their use and so do all the shades of flex in between those extremes.

What snowboard boot flex is right for me?
  • All Mountain riders should look for medium to medium-stiff flexing boots
  • Freeriders should lean toward stiffer boots depending on how aggressive you ride
  • Freestyle and Park riders may prefer softer boots if you’re really into jibbing, buttering and smaller jumps but if you go for big kickers you may need something stiffer to help you stick those landings

These are general recommendations but there are no hard and fast rules. Your experience and progression potential also come into play as I’ll describe below.

If you’re new to snowboarding it is better to choose a boot in the soft to medium flex range. 

Really stiff boots can contribute to control problems for beginners since it is going to be super responsive to all of your inadvertent body movements that just seem to happen as you’re learning. 

As a beginner, you’re also going to be spending a lot of time on your butt after many falls then you’ll exert many efforts to get back to your feet. Softer flexing boots will be more forgiving as you work to build your skills and make it easier to get back up and riding. 

An exception is if you are a beginner living near a resort, dedicated to riding every week, and expect to progress quickly. In this case you may want to stay in the medium flex range. 

Otherwise, for most occasional snowboarders it will probably be several seasons before you’re carving high speed turns where you’ll really appreciate a stiffer pair of boots. By then you can upgrade to a medium or even stiffer boot depending on which style you gravitate toward.

For the intermediate to advanced rider, many will find medium to stiffer flexing boots to be a better choice since they will better support aggressive and precise riding styles and new challenges.

Snowboard Boot Laces

A significant decision is what type of snowboard boot laces do you prefer?

The three basic lacing systems to choose from include Traditional lacing, Boa lacing, and Speed lacing. All of these systems are pretty good and reliable. It really comes down to personal preference.

So I recommend trying on each style and then figure out if you like traditional snowboard boots, Boa snowboard boots, or speed snowboard boots.

To learn more about how each system works along with some advantages and disadvantages to consider as you make your decision check out our full article on this topic: Snowboard Boot Lacing: Boa, Speed, or Traditional Laces?

Heat Moldable Liners

All of the top manufacturers claim to use heat moldable liners.  All this really means is that the foam materials break in or “pack out” as you use them.

They’re considered heat moldable because the process can be accelerated with the application of heat by artificial means or as you ride your feet get warm naturally and this allows the boot to break in and conform (or mold) to your foot.

There are methods to break in the boots before using them with heat.  Many snowboard shops will do this for you.  They have little heaters that they put in the boots for a few minutes.  Then they have you put your boots on and stand in a riding position for a few minutes.  This helps mold your boots to your feet so they’re ready to go the first time you hit the mountain.

As I said, this will also happen naturally as you ride.  But your boots may not be as comfortable the first few uses until they break in.  So, following this process allows you to avoid the break in period and have comfortable boots on day one.

You can also heat mold your boots yourself at home.  I followed the process in the YouTube video embedded below.  It worked great for me.

Sizing

Boot sizing is a commonly misunderstood topic. As you research snowboard boots across the web you will likely come across buyer reviews among mostly positive reviews that says a boot runs small. You should understand that this perception is often inaccurate due to a misunderstanding about how new boots should fit and how they break in over time.

A new boot should fit snugly. Your toes should just touch the end of the boot liner when you're wearing your snowboard socks. This is because the boot will pack out as it breaks in and will settle in at a slightly larger size.

Another factor that creates just a little more room for your toes in your boot is that during actual riding you will bend your knees and ankles forward which drives your heels into the back of the boots. So, you need to consider how a boot will break in and your position during actual riding versus standing upright like you would when trying on a normal pair of shoes.

Personally, I have had good luck buying the same size boots as my casual shoes/sneakers (Adidas in my case).

If you’ve got wide feet certainly consider brands with wide foot specific sizes and be sure to check out our Best Wide Snowboard Boots article.

Unfortunately, there is no perfect answer to determine your boot size without trying the boots on. If you choose to purchase online make sure you pick a retailer with a good return policy and free shipping. Depending on their policy you may be able to buy a few different sizes and keep just the best fitting pair of boots.

As with all your gear, be sure get it all set up in advance of hitting the mountain. You don't want to be making any major adjustments or discover that your boots don’t fit in your bindings while you're waiting in the lift line.

Conclusion

So this concludes our roundup of the best snowboard boots.  We've given you speed lacing snowboard boot, traditional lacing snowboard boot, and Boa lacing snowboard boot options to choose from for the following categories of terrain/styles:

  • All Mountain
  • Freeride
  • Freestyle and Park

If you're still deciding I encourage you to check out the feature comparison table below.  You can sort this table by clicking the column headings to focus in on one of the features.  For example if you care most about the flex then sort by flex and look deeper into the boots with your chosen flex.

Thanks for reading and we wish you all the best in your search for your next pair of boots!

Feature Comparison Table: Everything we Recommend

Photo

Price

Riding Style/

Terrain

Flex

Lacing System

Burton Ruler Snowboard Boot Black 9 D (M)

Burton Ruler (Men's)

All Mountain

Medium

Speed

Burton Ruler BOA Snowboard Boots Mens Sz 8 Black

Burton Ruler BOA (Men's)

All Mountain

Medium

BOA

Burton Limelight Snowboard Boot Brown Sugar 6 B (M)

Burton Limelight (Women's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

All Mountain

Medium

Speed

Burton Limelight Boa Snowboard Boot Lilac Gray 6 B (M)

Burton Limelight BOA (Women's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

All Mountain

Medium

BOA

thirtytwo Lashed Bradshaw

Thirtytwo Lashed (Men's)

All Mountain

Medium

Traditional

thirtytwo Men's Lashed Double Boa '19/20 (Black, 13)

Thirtytwo Lashed BOA (Men's)

All Mountain

Medium

BOA

thirtytwo Lashed W's

Thirtytwo Lashed (Women's)

All Mountain

Medium

Traditional

thirtytwo Women's Lashed Double Boa '19/20 Snowbaord Boot (Rose, 7)

Thirtytwo Lashed BOA (Women's)

All Mountain

Medium

BOA

Ride Lasso Mens Snowboard Boots - 2020 (Forest, 8)

Ride Lasso (Men's)

All Mountain

Medium

BOA

Ride 2020 Hera Womens Vapor Size 6 Snowboard Boots

Ride Hera (Women's)

All Mountain

Medium

BOA

Burton Ion '19 Blues 9 D (M)

Burton Ion (Men's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

Freeride

Stiff

Speed

Burton Ion Leather Snowboard Boots Roughneck Sz 9

Burton Ion Leather (Men's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

Freeride

Stiff

Speed

Burton Ion Boa Snowboard Boot Black/Red 7 D (M)

Burton Ion BOA (Men's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

Freeride

Stiff

BOA

Burton Supreme Snowboard Boot Black 1 6.5 B (M)

Burton Supreme (Women's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

Freeride

Stiff

Speed

thirtytwo Men's TM-2 Snowboard Boot '19/20 (Red/Black, 6)

Thirtytwo TM-2 (Men's)

Freeride

Medium-Stiff

Traditional

thirtytwo Women's TM-2 '19/20 Snowboard Boot

Thirtytwo TM-2 (Women's)

Freeride

Medium-Stiff

Traditional

Ride Insano Snowboard Boots Black Mens Sz 10

Ride Insano (Men's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

Freeride

Stiff

BOA

Burton Swath Snowboard Boot Black Fade 8.5 D (M)

Burton Swath (Men's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

Freestyle/

Park

Medium

Speed

Burton Swath Boa Snowboard Boot Blue/Red 8 D (M)

Burton Swath BOA (Men's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

Freestyle/

Park

Medium

BOA

Burton Ritual LTD Snowboard Boots Charcoal/Coral Womens Sz 7

Burton Ritual LTD (Women's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

Freestyle/

Park

Medium

Speed

thirtytwo Cut '18 Snowboard Boots, Navy, 5

Thirtytwo Lo-Cut (Men's)

Freestyle/

Park

Medium-Soft

Traditional

thirtytwo Zephyr Women's '18 Snowboard Boots, Floral, 5.5

Thirtytwo Zephyr (Women's)

Freestyle/

Park

Medium-Soft

Traditional

Burton Felix Boa Snowboard Boot - Women's Purple Velvet, 7.0

Burton Felix BOA (Women's)

Price not available


Buy on Amazon

Freestyle/

Park

Medium

BOA

*Price updated: 2020-10-29 (Amazon API)

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