The LL Bean Boot one of the most fickle sizing boots out there. So why bother ordering it in the first place? Well, the L.L Bean Boot seamlessly merges style with utility and effortlessly glides into the hearts of many millennials who are yearning for a high-quality product that braves the sludge and muck of cities and country alike.
This in-depth guide is for the city dweller preferably near the NYC area but feels free to extrapolate information for your own personal uses. With the core focusing being on whether you should get the 6″ or 8″ LL Bean Boot.
Height, Size, Lining
Height: To be honest I’ve only had experience with the 6” and 8” versions of the Bean Boot, there are several pros and cons to both versions.
6” Bean Boot
|Light Weight||Lower Protection vs Puddles & Snow Banks|
|Easy to take off|
|Subtle low key|
8” Bean Boot
|Looks more “Manly”||Limited Stabilization and flex range|
|Hard to turn|
|Can’t “walk fast”|
How it Handles:
Sidewalks: 8” On icy sidewalks the 8” version handles it pretty poorly, especially since you need a wider range of motion to rebalance yourself in case you do slip. Be very wary when walking down icy stairs with 8″. The 6” version handles it a little better since it allows you to wobble your ankles a little bit to compensate for sudden shifts in body weight. And allows you more time to “juke” other pedestrians in a crowded area like Time’s Square.
Slush: While in slush the you’ll be smiling that you bought the 8” Bean Boot instead of the 6”, since no matter how high the splash wave from an car is the 8” Bean Boot is more than enough wet protection. They both handle traction relatively well on slush terrain.
Wet / Rain: They both perform really well in the rain / wet area traction wise, however the 6” Bean Boot is easier to throw on with any outfit and walk out the door. While the 8″ will require an entire “outfit adjustment”.
Wood Polished, Marble, Slick smooth floors of any type: When wet does not handle well in these situations that why I’ll rather have a 6” Bean Boot because it allows me some degree of agility, to reposition my center of gravity, in case I slip.
Carpet and other rough areas: Both 6″ and 8″ handles very well on these types of terrains, due to their high friction nature.
Public Transportation Areas: Don’t drive so I can offer insight on that. However, I have plenty of experience riding the infamous NYC MTA, with these two. Here I believe the 6″‘s mobility comes into play. You’ll have more ankle room to take larger strides and avoid falling off the platform. And take bigger lunges while going up treacherous stairs. While wearing the 8″ I had a constant fear of tripping and falling onto the tracks. I was also forced to take “tiny” steps up the stairs due to limited range of motion, had to lift my leg extra high just to clear the step.
What Size to Buy?
|Wool Sock?||Whole Size (ie 10)||Half Size (ie 10.5)|
|Yes||Order Regular Size (10)||Go down .5 (ie 10)|
|No||Order 1 size smaller (9)||Order 1.5 Down (9)|
Thinsulate? Goretex? Shearling?
Unlined Base Model: If you’re already wearing wool socks or won’t be stuck in the cold for too long, I’ll suggest this one. However, if you’re going to be out all day, either running errands or snowball fighting, I’ll recommend buying Sherling Lined ones, your feet will thank me!
Thinsulate: This is kind of the in-between option between, full blown Shearling and Unlined. If you want a little bit of warmth but not want the full fluffiness of Shearling Lined, then I’ll suggest Thinsulate.
Gore-Tex + Thinsulate: +$70 Breathable waterproof material that allows your feet sweat to evaporate through and yet keeps the moisture out. Geared towards the snow warriors, who need to trudge through the sludge. This WILL keep your feet DRY and WARM.
Shearling: +$100 This one is the holy grail of keeping your feet warm. Overkill for me, but if you want HOT and DRY feet in the winter, this one is for you. The only downside is you probably can’t wear it in the spring.
Full Disclosure: I have owned and used both the 8” and 6” variants of the Beans Boots and I heavily prefer the 6” version due to their range of motion and mobility.