Review of "Burton Bootique"

published 28/10/2013 | zoe_page
Member since : 08/07/2001
Reviews : 875
Members who trust : 252
About me :
As seen on TV
Excellent
Pro Brilliant laces; comfy to wear; designed for women
Cons Less bulky than many, but still bulky
very helpful
Comfort
Design
Durability
Value for Money

"Like Walking On A Carpet Made Of Puppies"

Once I'd made up my mind I wanted some snowboard boots, there was no stopping me. In fact I bought mine during a break while I was on an all-day lesson at Chill Factor, just so I could go back out wearing them for the last bit. It was the end of the winter season when the sales were on, so mine were knocked down to about half the original rrp. At £90 they still weren't cheap, but they were definitely significantly cheaper than if I'd bought them a couple of months earlier. I didn't go into the shop with any preconceived ideas about make or model of boot, so I just asked them to bring out all the ones in my size for me to look at and try on. I liked these ones best, and that was that. I owned my very first pair of snowboard boots.

I bought boots before I bought (or rather was bought) a board and bindings, because that's the order I was told to do it in. So I've used these boots on rental boards and more recently on my own board. I've also worn hire boots from Chill Factor and from Ski Dubai, so I've got various things to compare them to. But, really, there is no comparison. I didn't realize quite how hideously uncomfortable to wear and how hideously hard to fasten rental boots were until I tried on these which were neither of those things. I thought it was par for the course, but when my feet slid into these, well let's just say the Burton claim that they are like "walking on a carpet made of puppies" isn't much of an exaggeration .

This Bootique boot comes in two colour options, black with white, or white with blue. I have the former and there's very little white on them, just a few splashes of jade green. They are American sized which is only really an issue if you're buying online, as in store you can try on a few to figure out what your best fit is. I ended up trying on some UK 4s and some 4 ½s based on the stock they had left in different designs, and there wasn't much in it. Don't forget to take your thick ski socks with you!

The thing I love most about these boots is the thing I'll start with: their speed dial lacing. To fasten the boot you first tug up a string on the liner and push down the fastener to keep it fitted, and then you simply turn the dial on the front, keeping going until it feels snug. The dial pulls the laces into place and keeps them there. Then, to release at the end of the session, you simply pull the toggle up sharply and the dial spins itself in the opposite direction until the laces are loose and you can step out of the boot. If you over-tighten initially you can also dial it back slightly to slacken it a little, which is a new feature: previously if you went too far you had to pull the toggle to release you back to the beginning and start again which was a bit of a waste of time. These boots have a micro-adjustable, self-locking system which means you can really customise how loose or tight the boots are, though I simply tend to tighten and tighten until the dial becomes really stiff and the boots feel snug.

The rental boots I used to wear had standard laces you had to pull up through eyes and then knot and double knot at the top, and I really struggled with these. Firstly, it was almost impossible to get them tight enough as there was too much resistance compared to the strength in my hands, and secondly the laces always seemed a bit short at the top to double knot them properly. It's really important to have boots that are tied tight enough as this helps you control the board more, and I used to make the Boy kneel at my feet to tie my boots for me. Fun as that was, it's nice that I can now do my own boots easily, but still get them tight enough. The quick release mechanism is also great if you don't want to spend ages unlacing and pulling the laces out, for example if you're in a hurry to get out of wet clothes. It's easy to put on and take off these boots while standing up - especially helpful if you're the sort of person who will come off the slope with a white, snowy bottom, as you don't really then want to sit down on that on a dry surface. Because they don't have laces you might thing you cannot tie them onto a rucksack, but they have loops on the back of each boot which can work in the same way as long as you have something to clip them onto.

While the dial is the thing I love most about these boots, they have other features I like, too. These are designed for girls, or as Burton put it, they have a "Women's Specific True-Fit Design" which apparently takes into account the way women board, angles of ankles etc. Rental boots tend to be unisex and as I have small feet, I suspect mine were predominantly previously worn by 9 year old boys. The Bootique is a much slimmer fit than those boots, a nod to its female clientele.

The dial keeps the boot on (unlike when I'm wakeboarding, when I've had the whole board, boots and all, come flying off) but there would still be the potential for your foot to wiggle around. That's where their thin profile 3D tongue comes in. This is ergonomically designed to lock in your leg and foot, while trying to minimize the overlap between the inner liner and outer shell, increasing comfort.

On a snowboard your boots touch bindings, which sit on the board. These boots have an "EST optimized outsole" to promote more direct connection and lower your center of gravity. That's fine but as a new rider it doesn't mean a lot to me. I'm more concerned by comfy, cushioned boots which these are, as they have B3 gel inserts for shock absorption. This is a material that is focused on the heels and crucially bounces back after impact - unlike, for example, the stuff used in bike helmets- without wearing down over time. Because you have bindings, you don't focus as much on the sole of these, but I feel I should mention they have a flower and a sprinkling of stars on them, so when you walk your footprints still look like Big Foot, but a feminine, flora-appreciative Big Foot with a taste for astronomy.

Snowboard boots are bulky and heavy by design, but I find it a lot easier to walk in these than I did in rental boots. I still feel a bit like I'm moonwalking at times, but I can navigate easily and my legs don't get tired on the trek to the bottom of the lift. I sometimes feel like I have to do a comedy walk in these, lifting each knee high in an over-exaggerated way so I don't trip over, and while it's probably not as crazy to watch as it feels, I definitely notice the weight difference in these boots, and how much lighter they are than some other boots I wore.

One of the things I find hardest when boarding is lifting my heels so I can go on my toe edge. When I try, I feel as if I'm practically en pointe and yet according to the Boy, my heels are still firmly on the ground. Since getting these boots, I've improved to some extent because of the flexible spine that is more responsive to what I'm trying to get my feet and ankles to do. In some other boots this is too stiff for me and just digs in rather than flexing with me.

Obviously you want your feet to stay as dry as possible on the slope, but even with boots tucked inside your trousers, snow can sometimes find its way in. These boots have a snow-proof internal gusset to seal off the lower zone of the boot and keep the white stuff out. As a result, my toes are the only part of me that are never cold or wet when I come off the slope - unlike my fingers (silly gloves) and back (silly pants) and hair (silly me, falling over).

This boot has a few features I've yet to use, for example hot pockets in the liner which you can slip disposable toe warming pads into. Mine even came with a free sample of these which I'm keeping safe for when I go somewhere really cold. Like outdoors on the Alps this Christmas, not indoors in Manchester in July. To be honest, they always feel warm enough for me - the Imprint 1 liner is a faux-fur material helps.

On a scale of 1 (soft) to 10 (stiff) these boots are rated a 3 in terms of flexibility, which is great for improving your comfort as you practice, and for allowing a more natural leg movement (as natural as is possible, anyway, when you have feet strapped to a board at a jaunty angle). These boots are targeted at boarders whose ability is starter to average, which definitely encompasses me and will do for a very long time. There are of course higher spec, higher performance boots out there, but they would be too much for my needs, so I didn't even consider these.

These boots are ridiculously comfy to wear and were so right from the start. They did not require breaking in and have never rubbed or given me blisters which is massively unusual where footwear and I are concerned. They say the less you think about your boots, the better, and I rarely think about these when they are on. They are very comfortable to wear, and strap easily into my bindings. These are a softer, lighter boot than I am used to, and I definitely feel the difference. I spend less time noticing if my feet are pinched or cold, and more time concentrating on getting from the top of the slope to the bottom without crashing into annoying child skiers, which by all accounts is a good thing.

Highly recommended, I am very happy with them and would buy Burton again though I hope I won't have to for a long time.

These boots are currently available on line and in store, but sizes vary depending on where you go.

Originally around the £170, I've seen these recently for around for £90 - £110.

www.burton.com

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Comments on this review

  • Essexgirl2006 published 30/10/2013
    Glad no actual puppies were harmed.
  • Graygirl published 29/10/2013
    Great review x
  • KateHurst published 29/10/2013
    These sound quite well designed; your description made me think of my hiking boots, which are great for walking but hopeless for driving in as the soles are so thick I never feel like I'm in control of the car. (Hence I've only driven in them ones.) These seem like a much better design.
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Product Information : Burton Bootique

Manufacturer's product description

Snowboarding

Product Details

Manufacturer: Burton

Type: Boots

Gender: Ladies

Subtype: Snowboarding

EAN: 9009518480695

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Listed on Ciao since: 07/10/2013