Extend The Life Of Your Ski Boots

Your boots are the most important part of your get-up. The right boot will enhance your ski performance, adjust your posture, and protect your spine. Plus, the right fit will keep your ankle secure while you rip through tree lines or take on steep icy moguls. Making an investment in the right ski boots is a huge deal. There are so many factors to consider before taking the leap and investing. And, once you reach the hill and break them in, it's easier to know whether you've made the right decision.


So, like any technical gear, it's worth taking simple steps to look after your boots so they last longer and feel better on the slopes.  

Breaking In New Boots

Like new mountaineering boots, new ski boots are stiff and need breaking in. This takes, on average, two to three days. Many wear new boots around the house and flex the boot back and forth. You could do this for 15-20 minutes at a time or stretch it out over a week for three to five minutes daily.  


To speed up the process, you can get your feet heat moulded by a professional ski-boot fitter. This allows the boot liners to set to your feet, making them the right fit for you so you can seek fresh tracks a couple of days earlier. 


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Steps To Putting On Ski Boots

  • Undo all buckles and straps  
  • Open your boot wide by pulling the tongue forward and slightly to the side. This helps stretch out the plastic shell and allows more space to slide your foot in 
  • Smooth out any creases in your socks 
  • While you continue to pull the tongue forward, stand up and step into the boot, as you'll need your weight to push your heel down into the boot 
  • Bend your knees and flex your shins while wiggling your foot into place 
  • Once in, tap your heel on the ground, so it's set secured to the back of the boot  
  • Secure your buckles and straps – at this stage, you don't want to risk cutting blood circulation, and you can always tighten them a bit once you've hit up your first run. If you struggle to close a buckle, it's too tight  


Top tip: Tightening your top strap first can make fastening your upper two buckles much less effort.   


Socks – A Snow Lover's Secret Weapon

A good quality pair of socks is crucial to warm, happy feet. Don't let the temptation of thick socks = warmest socks fool you. When squeezed into a ski boot, thick socks will bunch up and push out the thermal air gap needed to keep your feet warm. Instead, your best bet is to buy thin, high-quality socks to maintain your perfect fit and retain those thermal properties. Merino wool, a popular natural-fibre choice, is anti-bacterial and moisture-wicking to keep you dry and regulated in harsh mountain conditions.   


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Cold Feet Sufferers – We've Got You

If cold feet and hands get in the way of you pushing limits, it's time to find a solution. Luckily, great new gear and technology will likely end these uncomfortable chills and get you back on top performance. Here are a few ideas:  


Quality socks  

Make top-quality socks your number one priority. Invest in socks made from moisture-wicking materials so your sweat doesn't become the reason for frozen feet. This is key to staying out in the resort, doing what you love for longer. Our in-store experts have had their fair share of sock disasters, so get in touch in-store or online to find your game-changing pair.  


Heated socks  

If a great pair of socks doesn't quite cut it, heated socks are your next best bet. Perfect for taking with you when venturing out in the backcountry or on those clear blue-bird sub-10 days.  


Re-useable heat pads 

Braving first and last chair? You're going to need backup. These useful little pads are a perfect emergency heating system for those extra cold days. They contain a small metal disc, which, when pressed, creates a chemical reaction resulting in a heated pad for your hands or feet. Simply pop them in boiling water for two minutes when you get home, and they're ready to use on your next rip.   


Stay Safe With Non-Slip Technology

The rigid heel plates on ski boots make it a risky business getting from A to B. Rushing to the gondola, toilet missions down icy steps or finding a table for lunch are all likely slip hazards. Luckily, GripWalk soles give you a better grip on smooth or sloping grounds thanks to the softer and ribbed foot surfaces. Plus, the days of awkward ski-boot walking are over. Because of the raised front plate, they give you the luxury of strolling around like you're wearing regular shoes.  


Lastly, if the soles on your ski boots look worn, they may need replacing. Keep checking, as you won't want them wearing through to the plastic shell. If this does happen, reach out to our Repair & Care team for the best advice.   


Maintaining Boots On The Hill

After an action-packed morning of shredding, it's tempting to unclip your buckles, sit back and chill out with a hot drink. Nothing beats it. But, when buckles hang loosely, they can easily get caught or damaged. Getting replacement buckles is super easy, but instead, save yourself the headache and keep those buckles loose but secure.  


Plus, if sliding around during Après got you too excited, resulting in some tattered buckles, don't panic; reach out to one of our in-store experts, and they'll help you find a quick replacement.  

After-Ski Care

Dry your liners + boot shell 

Ski liners don't last forever (we wish they would). Replacing these ultimately depends on your usage and care routine. On average, liners need replacing every 100 days of skiing. You'll notice the compression because your boot will feel roomy, giving you less feeling of control. However, if you follow all the expert advice above, you'll get the best longevity from them.  


Unbuckling your boots at the end of an epic shred is the best feeling. But, like during your rest stops, keep those straps from getting damaged and try loosening them until you reach your final destination. Unfortunately, moisture will enter and leave your liners wet depending on the weather and how hard you're hitting the slopes.  


The best way to dry your boot liners is on wooden or metal drying racks without any heating system, as too much heat can damage your liners. Quite often, chalet or hotel boot dryers are set too high, so best to avoid those too. Simply letting them dry naturally avoids this issue altogether.  


Grab a damp cloth and give the inside and out of your boot shell a wipe down, and if you remove the footboard, be gentle as they can easily snap.  


Reassemble for storage 

Once everything is bone dry, pop your insoles back in the liners. Then, the liners back in the boot shells. Be careful; mixing the left and right is super common and an uncomfortable mistake.  


Put your boots on briefly to feel everything is right. And, once your foot is out, your boot tongue should bob up and down freely. If it doesn't, it might be caught. Lastly, buckle up your boots and store them in a dry area, out of sunlight, ready for your next mountain adventure. 

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