Product Review – North Face Shellista Lace Boot

I own several different North Face products, from boots to fleece to a down sweater, tents and more and so I was excited to get my North Face Shellista Lace Boot in the mail, rated for temperatures down to -25 degrees. The boot itself is a great looking boot, with rubber footing to keep feet dry, Primaloft Eco Insulation throughout, and decorative leather details, but as soon as I put my hand inside the boot I knew there was going to be a problem.

The North Face addressed the issues of cold coming up through the bottom of the boot by putting significant padding below the insole, but the problem with this boots lies in that there is nothing to promote warmth in the boot. The insole is a regular insole, albeit with insulation below. The Primaloft Eco Insulation is so thin as to be negligible. Where is the wool felt insole that would not only promote warmth, but would also wick away moisture if feet sweat? A typical morning for me consists of taking my dog for an hour or longer hike, often up pretty steep hills. Going up I sweat, coming down, I cool off fast, which is why having gear that wicks moisture is critical, otherwise the chill can be unbearable. These boots do nothing to wick away sweat, but that wasn’t a problem as I couldn’t get my feet anywhere near warm, moving in +30 degree temperatures.

When I called customer service, I was told they would not take the boot back it it had been worn, but maybe if there was a warranty issue with it, they might take it back. The North Face who guarantees all their products performance was telling me they wouldn’t not take back a boot if it didn’t perform to the temperature rating they claimed it would.

I’m not sure who tested these boots, but The North Face should realize that women stay warm in their core in cold temperatures as a survival mechanism in case they are pregnant, the child stays warm. As a consequence, they lose heat from their extremities first and at an entirely different rate than men. My hands and feet lose warmth in temperatures hitting 30 and under and I need a boot that keeps my feet warm, helps to generate heat when the outside wants to zap it. I was so disappointed with these boots. Come on North Face. Step up and rate your boots according to a realistic rating. Had I been in -25 degree temps I would have had to deal with frost nip at best and frost bite at worst.

2 Responses to “Product Review – North Face Shellista Lace Boot”

  1. Sarah says:

    Hi – was really interested to read your thoughts on these boots. I waited for several months before spending my birthday money on these boots, I have just worn them for the first time in about 8 degrees temp and my toes (exactly where the rubber boot bit is) were freezing – and I had 2 pairs of socks on. I’m so upset that I spent so long deciding on my boots only to end up buying these. The two things I made damn sure of before I purchased were that they were a) waterproof and b) warm.

    I’m just interested as to whether you got anywhere with North Face in the end?



    • admin says:

      I cleaned them up and sent them back through Zappos and got a pair of Sorels rated to -30, which end up keeping me warm to about 0 degrees. I would call North Face and tell them the boot doesn’t stand up to what you expected. Let me know how it goes. Sorry to take so long in replying to you.

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