Summer Rainboots for Commuting in the Rain

city street with huge puddle

city street with huge puddle

This page was last updated June 2023 except where otherwise noted.

What do you wear to keep your feet dry during summer showers? Do summer rainboots exist? Reader P wonders.

A shoe question for you – what are the best shoes to wear when commuting in hot summer rain? I usually wear my tall Hunter rainboots fall through spring, but they’re way too hot for muggy +80 degree summers. Are plastic flip flops okay? They seem most functional, but I feel so weird wearing them with a suit or work dress. Is there something in between?

I’m curious to hear what the readers say here. As I think I’ve mentioned before, I hate having wet feet — here in New York you can easily and unexpectedly wade into a puddle (including in a covered place, like the subway) that’s half a foot deep, if not more. (And often gross!)

{related: 5 tips to stay cool on your commute on really hot days}

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Hunter rainboots with python print and purple accents
Option A: Hunter boots!

I’m a huge fan of my Hunter rainboots for cooler months (pictured), and honestly I still pull out my rainboots if the weather is at all cool (up to 75 degrees or so, probably), but with kneesocks instead of tights.

{related: what to wear to work in summer}

Summer Rainy Day Outfit

Summer rain showers are different, though — no one wants to wear a pair of knee-high plastic boots when it’s 95 degrees. My usual commuting shoe, the flip flop (I hate to admit that!) is also unsuitable for wet weather, in my experience — the footbed of the shoe always seems to get too slippery for me in the rain, and the last thing I want when it’s pouring is to go go slowly and carefully.

So my usual go-to outfit when I need to look stylish and polished even on my commute is:

  • a skirt or dress (so I don’t have to worry about wet pantlegs)
  • a pair of actual shoes (preferably maryjane or ankle strap wedges) that will stay on my feet if I’m hurrying/running, and either be an acceptable fashion choice for the rest of the day or at least fit the “I won’t be embarrassed to run into a coworker in the elevator” requirement.
  • a small (but strong) umbrella to try to keep my shoes as dry as possible.

{related: the best work dresses}

Some of our latest favorite strappy shoes for work:

collage of 4 strappy heels for work
As of June 2023, these are our latest favorite strappy heels for work: 1) Anne Klein, 2) CK Calvin Klein, 3) M.Gemi, 4) Manolo Blahnik (not pictured: Valentino, Tamara Mellon, and Jennifer Chamandii) — if you’re looking for strappy commuting shoes with heels to maintain a hem length, we recommend Dansko or Fly London

The last time we discussed this, readers had a few different great ideas for rubber shoes for commuting in the rain — i.e., summer rainboots!

{related: lightweight pants for work}

The Best Options If You Don’t Want to Wear Summer Rainboots

Waterproof Shoes for Commuting in Summer Rain

One Trendy Option: Waterproof Sneakers

gray waterproof sneakers
Waterproof sneakers: AllBirds

Sneakers are a great way to stay stylish in the rain, and there are a ton of waterproof sneakers that are perfect for this. (Depending on the level of rain and puddles you expect to encounter, you could also possibly get away with just a waterproofing spray on your regular shoes.)

Readers swear by the comfort of these, and they’re great for traction and rain — the company notes that they combine “cozy ZQ Merino wool and a bio-based water repellent shield,” so their “rain-ready sneaker keeps your feet predictably dry in unpredictable weather.”

The pictured sneakers are around $125; you can find them at Allbirds.com; they’re also sometimes at Nordstrom.

A lot of other brands have waterproof sneakers, though, as you can see from the broad selection at Nordstrom and Zappos. Three brands that specialize in waterproof sneakers include Vessi, On Sneakers, and Sorel.

{related: summer work clothes: how to look professional when it’s hot out}

Another Waterproof Option for Summer Rain: Active Sandals

black Tevas
Active sandal: Teva

A number of readers noted that they liked to go for an “active sandal” for summer, such as Teva sandals. As the Zappos description notes, they have a “secure fit, supportive comfort, and reliably grippy outsole” to provide traction. Plus, the vegan-friendly sandals have quick-drying straps.

Teva sandals are $54.95 at Zappos and Amazon. Other reader-favorites for active sandals: Chaco.

Rubber Shoes for Commuting in the Rain

One Option: Crocs Sandals or Jelly Sandals

navy blue sandals with backs
Jelly sandals: Nautica

Jelly sandals come and go in fashion, but Crocs almost always has a sandal with a heel on it (so it won’t fly off your feet like flip flops will).

I’ve had these flip Crocs in the past (mostly to play with my son at the local water park). As rubber shoes go, they’d be fine for commuting shoes — but I still wouldn’t want to step into a city puddle in them. (I also wouldn’t want to wear them on gravel or anywhere that small stones might get stuck in your shoe.)

Similar options: Oka B. sandals, this closed-toe T-strap jelly sandal, or the Nautica jelly sandals pictured at top.

{related: stylish white blazers for work}

Rubber Ballet Flats!?

black rubber ballet flats with gold detail on toe and blue lining
Rubber ballet flats: Oka B.

If a strap isn’t important to you, then there are, of course, a growing number of companies that make rubber ballet flats, including Crocs and Oka B.,; the Zappos page devoted to jelly shoes for women shows you can get even Kate Spade New York and Stuart Weitzman shoes in a rain-friendly jelly.

Readers, what do you wear to keep your feet dry when it’s raining in the summer? Do you just wear kneesocks with your regular rainboots and chalk it up to bad weather, or do you have a separate shoe or system for hot weather? 

If you like these rain boots for summer, you might also want our favorite boots attire below — 

Updated stock images via Stencil.

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