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8 best women’s boots for wide calves, tried and tested for a comfortable fit

When it comes to comfort and style, these tried and tested boots really do fit the brief

Emma Rossiter
Monday 04 December 2023 11:40 GMT
<p>Every pair was worn on calves with an 18in circumference  </p>

Every pair was worn on calves with an 18in circumference

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The colder months are well underway, bringing with them wetter weather, which is perfect for boots. But if, like me, you’re a woman who’s blessed with chunkier calves, finding a pair of winter boots that are fashionable while still being functional can be a challenge.

If you enjoy a spot of shoe shopping but often find yourself deflated when those smart knee-highs won’t zip up past your ankle, I’m here to tell you that you are not alone. The average UK woman’s calf measures around 14.5in, meaning – whether right or wrong – a “wide calf” is any that has a circumference greater than 15in.

Now, it’s highly unlikely you’re going looking for new boots with a tape measure, and even when it comes to shopping online, a lot of retailers don’t have the measurements on there. But knowing your calf size will help when you start browsing.

While one size rarely fits all, there are retailers out there that have us bigger-calf gals in mind – you just have to know where to look, and that’s where this round-up comes in.

In my search for the best boots for wider calves, I discovered that an EE or EEE fit will mean a wider shoe and, sometimes, this will also mean a wider fit all around (but not always – more on that later). Plus, some retailers give you the option to customise the size to ensure your best fit.

How we tested

For the past month, I’ve been slipping my 18in calves into the best boots for wider calves. In order to be featured in this round-up, all the boots I tried had just one minimum requirement to meet: they must fit and do up around my calves comfortably. The best of the best were then rated on quality, comfort, whether they rubbed, style and functionality.

Scroll down for the boots that have become staples of my winter wardrobe.

Every pair featured had to fit and do up comfortably

The best women’s boots for wide calves in 2023 are:

  • Best boots for wide calves overall – Yours brown chunky calf boots: £49.99, Yoursclothing.co.uk
  • Best budget boots for wide calves – Yours black stretch knee high boots: £39.99, Yoursclothing.co.uk
  • Best luxury boots for wide calves – Duo Boots Belmore knee high boots in brown leather: £250, Duoboots.com
  • Best high heeled boots for wide calves –  Very wide fit block heel slouch knee boot with wider fitting calf: £48, Very.co.uk

Yours brown chunky calf boots

best boots for wide calves Yours brown chunky calf boots
  • Best: Boots for wide calves overall
  • Sizes: 4-10
  • Calf sizes: E and EEE
  • Why we love it
    • Chunky sole perfect for winter
    • Elasticated back panel

For a pair of boots that are comfortable, fashionable, winter ready and can fit around your calves with ease, this pair from Yours are the undisputed champs. I have reached for the boots time and time again already this autumn, for rainy trips to the pub and date nights. They slip on easily and although they are very wide in the foot for me, I’ll never say no to a second pair of socks when the weather outside is frightful.

With a cleated sole, I reckon these boots will offer practicality when the icier weather rolls in. Meanwhile, on days when I need an extra layer, the elasticated back panel will help them to stretch around all while never compromising on comfort.

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Yours black stretch knee high boots

best boots for wide calves Yours black stretch knee high boots
  • Best: Budget boots for wide calves
  • Sizes: 4-10
  • Calf sizes: EE and EEE
  • Why we love it
    • Two elasticated panels for a surefire wide fit
    • Stylish faux suede
  • Take note
    • The fabric may not be the best for wetter weather

At just under £40, these are the cheapest boots in this round-up. But don’t assume their affordability makes them unworthy contenders. With a small heel height (1.3in), a rounded toe and faux-suede finish, they could easily pass for a higher end pair.

What I appreciated was the XL calf fit and the two stretchy panels, which made them fit my calves perfectly. I’ve knocked one point off for waterproofing as while they held up brilliantly indoors, when I wore them on a particularly wet day – which, granted wasn’t my best idea – they did get a bit soggy. However, I will stress that my feet stayed dry regardless.

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Duo Boots Belmore knee high boots in brown leather

best boots for wide calves Duo Boots Belmore knee high boots in brown leather
  • Best: Luxury boots for wide calves
  • Sizes: 2-10
  • Calf sizes: 30cm-50cm
  • Why we love it
    • Customised for the perfect fit
    • Chunky heel
  • Take note
    • They’re expensive

If it was possible to fall in love at first sight with a pair of boots, these were the ones that stole my heart. With that gorgeous leather smell straight out of the box and a rich chocolate-brown colour, I was really excited to get these on. Plus, thanks to Duo’s fit finder – which taught me how to properly measure my calves for the most accurate fit – they slipped on effortlessly. My calves felt cushioned, comfortable and I had no issues with the zip either.

With a block heel, platform sole and memory foam insole, I was able to spend a whole evening in the boots – walking around and out for dinner – with no complaints about my feet hurting.

Considering the hefty price tag, you’ll want to make sure you get the size spot on. But given the fact that these boots come in nine different shoe sizes and eight calf sizes, there’s no reason why you won’t be able to get the best fit.

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Yours black faux suede over-the-knee boots

best boots for wide calves Yours black faux suede over the knee boots
  • Best: Over-the-knee boots for wide calves
  • Sizes: 4-10
  • Calf sizes: E and EEE
  • Why we love it
    • Secure tie at the back to stop them from slipping

Aside from hats, scarves, and winter coats, it seems to me that when the weather temperature plummets, the other must-have item to come out of the cupboard is a pair of over-the-knee boots. I’ll be honest, I’ve scoured every shop trying to find a decent pair of such boots that don’t fall down. And until now, that has been a challenge. But thanks to Yours, my search is over.

For a start, this pair has a three-quarter zip – music to my wide calves’ ears – which made for an easy fit. But to ensure I can dance the night away without worry, these also come with a tie fastening, so they never slip down. I also liked that to, some extent, I could adjust the fit on these to be over the knee or under, depending on how I felt – though I almost always went over just to keep my legs warm on a night on the town.

Great quality and a pair I’ll turn to time and time again for nights out throughout the festive season and beyond.

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Very wide fit block heel slouch knee boot with wider fitting calf

best boots for wide calves Very wide fit block heel slouch knee boot with wider fitting calf
  • Best: High-heeled boots for wide calves
  • Sizes: 3-9
  • Calf sizes: EE
  • Why we love it
    • Memory foam insole for a comfortable wear

I was very excited about this pair of high-heeled boots and in terms of style, I wasn’t disappointed. The rich, chocolatey brown shade makes them a fab option for your winter wardrobe and the boots will look just as good with skirts as they would with jeans.

However, in terms of fitting wide calves, they only just about make the cut. I tried a size six, which, according to Very’s size guide, means they have a calf circumference of 406mm. In an ideal world, I would have needed the calf circumference to be a bit bigger, so I wish it was possible to order a custom size a la Duo. That said, they did, with a bit of effort, fit comfortably – it just took a bit of wiggling to get there, so anyone with bigger calves than me may struggle in our size.

There are no zips on these boots, so you can scrunch them up to wherever you want them to sit. And in terms of strutting my stuff, I could last the night in these, thanks to the memory foam insole.

  1. £48 from Very.co.uk
Prices may vary
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Next forever comfort stitch detail knee high boots

best boots for wide calves Next forever comfort stitch detail knee high boots
  • Best: Everyday-wear boots for wide calves
  • Sizes: 4-9
  • Calf sizes: XW
  • Why we love it
    • Comfortable
    • Elasticated panel and chunky sole

Next has called these “forever comfort” and, honestly, if I had to sum up these boots in two words, they are absolutely the ones I’d use. Supremely comfortable and with a chunky sole, this pair has proved perfect for running errands, attending firework parties in muddy fields, and heading out to walk the dog.

They slip on effortlessly and I like the buckle detail, which can be adjusted for a tighter or looser fit. The zip does go all the way up, which, for some reason, proved a challenge on my left leg. But the elasticated panel allowed me to get these on with little to no struggle in the end. And, given these boots are from one of my favourite brands, I know the quality will last.

  1. £62 from Next.co.uk
Prices may vary
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Duo Boots haltham standard knee high boots in black suede

best boot for wide calves Duo Boots haltham standard knee high boots in black suede
  • Best: Suede boots for wide calves
  • Sizes: 2-10
  • Calf sizes: 30cm-50cm
  • Why we love it
    • A comfortable, customised fit
    • Come in petite, standard and tall heights
  • Take note
    • Expensive (but worth it)

Having already been impressed by this brand, I had high hopes for the Haltham boots. And they did not disappoint. More of an everyday boot, these would look as good at home and when wearing to the shops as for a bottomless brunch outfit. The suede fabric is soft to the touch and inside the same memory foam insole makes for a comfortable wear. They are a bit rigid around the heel and I did have a tiny bit of rubbing at first, but this has eased with multiple wears.

Again, thanks to the fit finder, I had a seamless fit with these boots and found they felt as comfortable with tights as when wearing jeans. Plus, as an extra bonus, they also come in petite, standard and tall heights, so your leg length is considered too. They’re not cheap but these boots are worth every penny.

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Yours beige brown faux leather knee high boots

best boots for wide calves Yours beige brown faux leather knee high boots
  • Best: Boots for extra-wide calves
  • Sizes: 4-8
  • Calf sizes: EEE
  • Why we love it
    • Great colour to brighten up a winter wardrobe
    • Faux leather can withstand a downpour
  • Take note
    • Only available in sizes four to eight

I received many, many, many compliments on these boots, though the most common question I got was “what colour are they?” While the brand says they’re a beige brown, I’d call them more greige, as they changed colour depending on the lighting. But whether you agree with me is another matter – I just liked that this versatile shade gave me more flexibility with styling. I also loved that the faux leather meant that, when the heavens did open, these boots were able to withstand a downpour. Plus, the chunky sole is bang on trend while also adding to comfort levels.

Again, the fit is perfect, and I had no trouble getting these on. And considering they’re the only pair in this round-up that aren’t black or brown, I think they’ll brighten up your winter wardrobe as the nights draw in.

Although they’re available in just sizes four to eight, I don’t think the fit on your calves will be an issue as EEE is the only width choice available.

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The verdict: Boots for wide calves

Undoubtedly, Yours has a number of great pairs in this round-up and our best buy goes to its appropriately named chunky calf boots. They’re comfortable, stylish and I have reached for them time and again already this autumn, and relish any excuse to wear them. I have to say, for luxury boots, Duo’s heeled and faux suede pair is an absolute delight. Never has a pair of boots fit me so well, and I’ll be wearing these at every opportunity while also taking very good care of them. I also have to give a shout out to Next. With elasticated panelling, a buckle and a stylish chunky sole, they’re a staple for the winter months to come.

Looking for more footwear recommendations? Read our round-up of the best white trainers for women

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