Kamik Heidi Review
Cons: Basic foot support, no insulation
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Our Analysis and Test Results
A mild-weather boot of mid-calf height, the Kamik Heidi is both classy and practical. It also remains one of the most affordable pairs we've recently tested. This Best Buy Winner continues to impress us with ample traction (even in the snow) and sufficient comfort for all-day wear. These boots are also 100% recyclable and made with reflective binding and patches to allow for visibility at night.
Topping out at 12 inches from the ground, these waterproof, synthetic rubber boots offer comfortable protection despite scoring a tad lower than taller options. We feel this shaft height is in a great sweet spot for easy, practical use and adequate coverage without overwhelming the legs with rubber. Since there are no cutouts, zippers, or extraneous design features, the flood height has not been compromised.
With a mouth circumference measuring 13.75 inches, the Heidi lends a narrower fit, but it truly all depends on your calf size. With this narrow fit, the chances of rain or snow finding their way into the opening of the boot is lessened. Too, this smaller circumference never becomes a concern with how relatively short the boot is (as in, the bulk of the calf is above or at the lip). This model is more than sufficient for spending time out in the rain, for crossing shallow streams, and even jumping into puddles.
This boot is simply constructed with a rubber upper and a very thin nylon lining. The foot box has a relatively basic footbed and EVA insole. While custom insoles can make up for the lack of extended comforts, this boot provided sufficient support for us. The fit, ease of taking on and off, and mobility factors were all tested without gripe. Weighing in at only 2.71 pounds for a size 8, they are quite lightweight for their height, which proves to be a perk when they feel less of a burden after wearing them all day. The rubber uppers are fairly flexible and short enough to allow for adequate movement of the legs as you walk.
We feel that the Heidi runs true to size. We sized up and, as expected, this causes some slight heel slippage. The most significant complaint found across customer reviews is regarding foot support, and we echo this. This is a small drawback, however, unless you plan to walk long distances or perform rough outdoor work all day long.
One of the highest performing boots in traction, we are certainly glad to find that fashion didn't out-prioritize functionality in this case. We tend to assume that the more traditionally sporty-looking boots will reign in this category, but, quite the contrary — this stylish competitor stood out strong and held up to the best of the best.
When testing in icy, snowy conditions, in the river, and across wet grass, it isn't necessarily about pinpointing the exact point of failure for us, but whether or not the tread instills confidence with every step. No model is perfect, but we found these to remain reliable under these various circumstances. Consistently stable, we are impressed with their performance despite how relatively simple they are. This might have to do with the sensitivity allowed. The outsole isn't too thick to prevent you from sensing friction across the terrain.
With prominent tread, the Heidi performs well over both flat and inclined terrain. It is the slimy rocks in a river environment that knocks a point off for these. However, chances are, you are most likely using rain boots in urban or suburban settings, where flat surfaces abound. This model is also not intentionally made for hiking, and with thinner soles, we wouldn't recommend it for the long haul. Still, it's comforting to know the tread will keep you steady in rougher terrain.
Made for mild-weather, it comes as no surprise that the Heidi yields only average scores for warmth. This metric measures how well the boots retain heat throughout the day and during cold weather events. With ideal temperatures ranging between 45 and 75F, the performance is comfortable and not too warm. The Heidi was only not-warm-enough when temperatures fell below 40, especially at or below freezing due to the thin nature of the rubber.
If you're in search of a contender that will be sufficiently cozy in colder conditions, it might be better to consider an intentionally insulated boot. Made without any insulation other than the inner lining, these boots are better suited for temperate zones and places with distinct rainy seasons. They are also great during the summer to work in the garden as you can get away with wearing much thinner socks.
The Heidi comes in many glossy colors that we are a fan of, but always check the manufacturer's website for the season's current picks.
We tested a deep red color, one like the color of a nice Cabernet Sauvignon. True to what photos show online, we are very pleased with this block of color encased in a transparent, molded rubber. The boot is bordered by both the black nylon at the boot rim and by the black outsole, which provides a simple, yet versatile look. The shorter shaft height allows for pants to more-easily fit inside, and, of course, leggings fit easily. It is nice to be able to choose a more elegant boot when dressing for restaurants or evening events. Our lead tester expressed that the sheen of the red was very popular among her friends.
Kamik boots come in whole sizes 6-11. As is standard with most rainwear, heel slippage is likely when half-sizes are not available. This model is no exception. Fortunately, this brand runs consistently true to size. Kamik recommends sizing up for those who wear half-sizes. Our lead tester is a size 7.5; with the Heidi, we purchased a size 8, and were happy to find it suitable. Because of this, there is space for wearing much thicker socks.
That said, with thin socks, the fit and comfort are still adequate for all-day wear. The foot box itself fits snugly around the foot, so if your feet are of high volume, we would agree that it is especially best to size up. Keep in mind that if you do purchase an alternate insole, you will likely want to make sure your feet don't become cramped, which we feel might happen easily with this lean foot box.
A true bargain for those wanting a blend of style and functionality, the Heidi provides more than the basics for what makes up an excellent rain boot — all without emptying your pockets. For a far lower price than others, these boots render as a high-value item.
The Kamik Heidi is a tough competitor and overall great product for an amazing price. We've awarded them as our Best Buy winner as these boots will not disappoint when you want to keep your feet both dry and stylish. With dependable traction and flexible rubber, we are huge fans — particularly for the occasional romp into the woods.
— Sara Aranda