To keep feet warm in cold weather, it is crucial to ensure that the feet remain dry. Wear shoes or boots that are both waterproof and breathable while wearing socks with moisture-wicking properties. Choose socks that are made of wool or synthetic fabrics, and avoid cotton.
Although cotton is a common fabric for socks, it is imperative to avoid cotton socks when trying to keep feet warm. In addition to having little insulation value, cotton socks absorb sweat; feet remain damp and become cold. Select socks that have no cotton content and are instead made of wool, synthetic wool or fleece. These materials maintain insulating properties even when damp, and they dry more quickly than cotton.
To prevent water from reaching the feet from the exterior, waterproof boots are essential. The boots should be fitted closely to the leg so that water and snow cannot get in through the foot opening. The boots also need to be breathable to allow perspiration to evaporate, so sweat is not trapped, and not chill the feet. Although it seems counterintuitive that a waterproof boot would be breathable, high-tech fabrics keep out the large droplets of water found in snow and water while allowing the much-smaller particles of evaporated sweat to exit.