This Oprah-Approved Brand Makes Chunky Boots So Comfy, I Walked 12 Miles in Them
Credit: Courtesy/InStyle

This Oprah-Approved Brand Makes Chunky Boots So Comfy, I Walked 12 Miles in Them

They’re perfect for rain, sleet, or shine.
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Whether I'm watching content creators construct the perfect outfit on TikTok or stalking celebs' LOTD on InStyle, there seems to be a common style trend that traverses age or style: Lug sole boots. The chunky footwear has stuck around since 2019, when it made waves as the "it girl" shoe of the season. But while high heels sales declined in popularity, lug boots prevailed by making a name for themselves as super comfy shoes on par with sneakers. So when it came time to find my go-to boots last winter, I knew I needed a pair. 

My search led me far and wide. I wanted in on the trend, but I needed an option that could keep up with my daily walks, which often surpass 10,000 steps. Most styles offering this level of support alluded to it; they were too wide, too chunky, or just too ugly. But then, like Goldilocks, I found my perfect fit in Vionic's Karsen Boot

If you're familiar with Oprah's Favorite Things, you likely know Vionic. Its slippers and slip-on sneakers have made her list due to their supportive designs, which prioritize stability, arch support, and cushioning — so it makes sense why they're also approved by podiatrists. As it turns out, the Karsen boots are no different. Easier to break in than a pair of Doc Martens, they have an EVA foam footbed that molds to your foot. I wouldn't describe it as cloud-like, but it's the closest thing I've ever felt to it in a pair of boots; a fact supported by my decision to wear them for a 12-mile walk around New York City. 

KARSEN BOOT
Credit: Vionic

Shop now: $180; vionicshoes.com

The waterproof leather is yet another reason I can't stop obsessing over these boots. It's not only easy to clean with a damp cloth, but also makes the shoes a solid choice in inclement weather. I've donned these during snowstorms, rain showers, and everything in between, without slipping or falling (despite the 2-inch heel). I once even went out of my way to step in a puddle — just to test out the seam-sealed technology — and as I expected, no moisture slipped through and my feet stayed completely dry. 

Also available in a synthetic rubber, the Karsen style offers so much versatility. I wear these while taking my dog on 3-mile walks, but I also love pairing them with a leather skirt or straight-leg jeans for a night out. Needless to say, the chunky boots have accompanied me to concerts, bars, and dinners at Lilia à la Kim K and Pete Davidson. And while I've been gifted two of the colorways (black and a now-sold-out cream) by Vionic, I now can't wait to add the Olive color to my collection on my own dime.

My only note is that the shoes run a little big, and that's coming from someone with wide feet. The chunkier design often means more room, but I found it noticeable enough that I decided to size down. So while I normally wear a 9, I went with a size 8.5 for my second pair. I wear the larger size with extra thick socks, and actually prefer to do so on cold winter days, but I like the snug fit of the slightly smaller pair for regular use. 

All in all, I can't imagine a better way to get in on the chunky trend. I get the support that my feet crave, but I also get the style that makes my outfits feel worthy of an OOTD TikTok post. 

KARSEN BOOT
Credit: Vionic

Shop now: $130; vionicshoes.com