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10 best kids’ wellies: Perfect for splashing about in puddles

An absolute must for rainy days

Rebecca Miles
Monday 26 September 2022 15:01 BST
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Autumn is the ideal time to invest in a new pair of wellies for your child. Our unpredictable UK climate means wet days can appear from nowhere, and having a decent pair of waterproof shoes to hand can make all the difference to everyone’s enjoyment of the great outdoors.

Long gone are the days when wellies just came in a few different colours. There are so many fun designs now that should banish any reluctance to wear a pair.

Wellies are usually available from size EUR 20 and up – simply because any smaller and little legs can find them too heavy to enjoy wearing. If your little one is ready to splash about in the rain but does’t yet fit standard wellies, something like the Bobux Paddington boots, available from size EUR 18, are a great early option.

It goes without saying that all the wellies tested here are 100% waterproof.

How we tested

Torrential and sudden rain at the beginning of September created the ideal climate for testing these wellies, and our four-year-old and six-year-old testers put them through their paces in our local park, where there are shaded wooded areas with lots of mud, as well as tarmac paths with lots of puddles.

We not only tested them while running, climbing and splashing, but also getting them on and off, to see if kids could do it easily and independently.

The best kids’ wellies for 2022 are:

  • Best overall – Dinoski Spike the dinosaur rain boots: £30, Dinoskiwear.com
  • Best for tough terrain – Polarn O. Pyret stripe kids’ wellies: £26, Polarnopyret.co.uk
  • Best for versatility – Bobux Paddington: £63, Bobux.co.uk
  • Best for style-conscious kids – Merry People Bobbi kids’ wellington boot: £39.95, Merrypeople.com
  • Best for larger feet – Reima Taika 2.0 rain boots: £28, Zalando.co.uk
  • Best for travelling – Joules Gruffalo roll-up flexible printed wellies: £26.95, Joules.com
  • Best for small feet - JoJo Maman Bébé children’s wellies: £19, JoJomamanbebe.co.uk
  • Best value – Muddy Puddles classic wellies: £15, Muddypuddles.com
  • Best for splashing in puddles - Frugi explorer wellington boots: £28-£30, Welovefrugi.com
  • Best for really wet days – Start-Rite puddle wellies: £26, Startriteshoes.com

Dinoski Spike the dinosaur rain boots

1 Dinoski.jpg
  • Best: Overall
  • Size range: EUR 25-31.5
  • Colourways: Three
  • Material: Natural rubber
  • Reflective material: No
  • Pull-on handles/tabs: Yes

These wellies have got it all – faux shearling lining for chilly days, tall cuffs for deep puddles and easy-to-grab handles to pull them on. They’re available in three fun designs – Spike the dinosaur, Sparkle the unicorn and Hop the bunny, which appear throughout Dinoski’s range for head-to-toe cuteness – and our tester didn’t want to take them off. Easy to wipe clean, if needed, they can even be put in the washing machine at 30C.

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Polarn O. Pyret stripe kids' wellies

2 Pop Wellies.jpg
  • Best: For tough terrain
  • Size range: EUR 20-33
  • Colourways: Two
  • Material: Rubber
  • Reflective material: Yes
  • Pull-on handles/tabs: Yes

Practical and hard-wearing, Polarn O. Pyret’s wellies have a reinforced toe section and sturdy sole. They came into their own while our tester was playing among tree roots, and show no sign of wearing out. They’re weighted in the sole to help them stay on and have a reflective strip running up the back. Our tester struggled to make use of the tab at the back to pull them on – it could do with being bigger for little fingers to grip.

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Bobux Paddington

3 Bobux.jpg
  • Best: For versatility
  • Size range: EUR 18-33
  • Colourways: Five
  • Material: Coated leather with merino wool lining
  • Reflective material: No
  • Pull-on handles/tabs: No

Not strictly a pair of wellies, these are waterproof leather boots that have been tested to keep kids’ feet dry for up to four hours if they were submerged in water. Waterproofing comes from the internal membrane, and warmth comes from the fine merino-wool lining. The zip fastening up the side and elasticated cuff at the rear meant our tester had no problem getting the boots on and off, and we loved the metallic sheen and lightweight comfort.

  1. £63 from Bobux.co.uk
Prices may vary
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Merry People Bobbi kids’ wellington boot

4 Merry People.jpg
  • Best: For style-conscious kids
  • Size range: EUR 20-34
  • Colourways: Four
  • Material: Natural rubber with neoprene lining
  • Reflective material: No
  • Pull-on handles/tabs: Yes

Newly launched in the UK from the Australian gumboot brand is this cute pair of ankle boots. They’re chunky and reliably waterproof, thanks to their classic rubber wellington boot styling and neoprene liner. The tabs at both front and back of the cuff were big enough for our tester to use successfully, and the boots were great for showery days. If you like to match your child, adult sizes are also available – they’re the same design, but there’s extra grip on the soles for the kids.

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Reima Taika 2.0 rain boots

5 Reima.jpg
  • Best: For larger feet
  • Size range: EUR 20-38
  • Colourways: Five
  • Material: Rubber with cotton lining
  • Reflective material: Yes
  • Pull-on handles/tabs: Yes

Finnish brand Reima makes great kit for the outdoors, and these rain boots are no exception. Built to last, they are sturdy but flexible. Coming to a decent height up our tester’s leg, these are great for wet days at forest school and show no sign of wear and tear.

  1. £28 from Zalando.com
Prices may vary
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JoJo Maman Bébé children’s wellies

7 JoJo Maman Bebe.jpg
  • Best: For small feet
  • Size range: EUR 20-29
  • Colourways: Three
  • Material: Natural rubber
  • Reflective material: No
  • Pull-on handles/tabs: No

These wellies are the best option for young walkers just discovering the joys of splashing about in the rain, as they’re lovely and light, so won’t tire out little legs. Soft and supple, they have an anti-sweat lining and we had no complaints after a day in the park. Plus, they’re a great price for a pair made from natural rubber.

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Muddy Puddles classic wellies

8 Muddy Puddles.jpg
  • Best: Value
  • Size range: EUR 23-33
  • Colourways: Four
  • Material: PVC
  • Reflective material: No
  • Pull-on handles/tabs: No

These wellies from Muddy Puddles are fuss-free and purse-friendly. They’ve got a nice tall cuff and a deep sole for maximum confidence in the wet too. The only pair here made from PVC, they weren’t noticeably sweatier than any of the others (possibly because they’re also one of the lightest), and are the least pricey of those we tested.

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Frugi explorer wellington boots

9 Frugi.jpg
  • Best: For splashing in puddles
  • Size range: EUR 24-36
  • Colourways: Three
  • Material: Natural rubber
  • Reflective material: No
  • Pull-on handles/tabs: No

Our tester loved the puddle height chart on the back of these boots, and found it fascinating to know the depth of every puddle – would it be at splish, splash or splosh level? Heavier than many we tested, and with a solid chunky sole, these are a great option for older kids who will appreciate the sturdiness, as well as the soft cotton lining.

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Start-Rite puddle wellies

10 Start-Rite.jpg
  • Best: For really wet days
  • Size range: EUR 20-34
  • Colourways: Eight
  • Material: Vulcanised rubber
  • Reflective material: No
  • Pull-on handles/tabs: No

With an elasticated and fleece-lined collar, these wellies are the pair we turned to the most in the torrential rain – being able to tighten the cuff near-guaranteed a dry day. We also really like the wedge at the heel, as it helps children to take these off by themselves, which promotes a satisfying sense of independence and helps develop motor skills. Available in one of the broadest range of sizes, when it comes to those we tested, these make a strong staple in any wet-weather wardrobe.

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The verdict: Kids’ wellies

Top spot goes to the rain boots from Dinoski – packed with features as well as fun designs, they quickly became our go-to pair. The puddle wellies from Start-Rite also deserve a mention for being really well made and reliably waterproof.

Get ready for more outdoor adventures with your little ones, with the best kids’ water bottles

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