Thursday, January 21, 2016

Properly Geared for Winter?


{It finally happened! Winter found the upper Midwest of the United States despite El Nino's best efforts.  Better luck for us next year. In the mean time we have to deal with the inbound arctic air.  That means breaking the insulated footwear out of the closet or heading to your local reputable retailer for a new pair. First, I should say that if you are waiting until it actually gets cold you are probably too late to get the best selection.  Most retailers begin selling winter footwear in October and smart shoppers think ahead.  Try not to be upset at the sales associate if you go in January and the selection is limited.  It is a seasonal product and it will not likely get restocked so late in the season.



What to buy, however?  The best looking pair you see? Sometimes, but certainly not always.  As with many things, this comes down to what you are actually going to be using them for.  The insulation in a cute insulated boot for walking from the car to the office will be greatly different from that in a boot for the city sanitation worker who spends hours outside at a time. It is important that you match the insulation to the activity.  Remember that insulation is a barrier that not only keeps cold air out but warm air in.  There is a great desire by people to go for the most insulation when they work outside a lot but this is not necessarily the best answer.  If you are very active while outside you will produce a lot of body heat and the higher insulation will not allow it to escape fast enough causing your body to overheat.  The end result of this is sweat and when you sweat in cold weather your body will get cold as it dries.  The reverse also occurs when too little insulation is coupled with inactivity and little body heat. It varies from person to person and their bodies as to how much insulation they need.  On average I recommend 600 to 800 grams of thinsulate for active work in the cold Midwestern environment and 800 to 1000 grams for inactive. 


Now what about the types of insulation and what is the best?  Insulation works by trapping air molecules between your feet and the outside air.  The more air that can be trapped, the less space for any cold air or heat to pass through.   Natural materials such as down or shearing work well but thinsulate is arguably the best product available.  Thinsulate is a synthetic material who's fine fibers are able to trap more air in less space.  It is 1.5 times more effective than down.  Just remember the more grams of thinsulate in the boot the more air trapped and the warmer the boot.  As always, visit a reputable local retailer, such as Rogan’s Shoes, for assistance with what type or how much insulation to get.}

To shop the stock of winter boots at Rogan's Shoes, click here!

This blog contains information from Ross Sykes, district manager of Rogan's Shoes Milwaukee stores and corporate sales. To see his original blog, click here

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