Booties vs. Ankle Boots: What’s the Difference?

Do you love an outfit with a fashionable short boot, but aren’t quite sure how to know the difference between booties and ankle boots? Don’t worry, you’re not alone! Even though many of us have heard the terms ankle boots and booties used interchangeably, they are two different styles and boots and determining which one is better for you, and when is the right occasion to wear each style, depends on having the information you need to make an informed decision. We know it can be frustrating to feel confused about which boot option is the right one for you and to feel like there isn’t the right information available in an easily accessible way that allows you to make the right choice for your lifestyle and your unique personal style, which is why we’re here to help! We’ve compiled all of the information you need into a complete guide on ankle boots and booties with our top tips to help make sure you find the right pair of boots with arch support to make a go-to staple in your wardrobe. We want you to feel happy and excited to go shopping for different boot styles, not intimidated and perplexed! With our guide to these two popular short boot styles, you’ll be ready to start shopping in no time so you can get out and start wearing your new stylish orthopedic shoes on all of your adventures.


We not only want to educate you on booties vs. ankle boots and how to make sure you choose a pair of boots that you’ll get the most use out of, but we have also earned a place in the industry as a trusted resource that has dedicated shoe stylists, foot doctors, and research teams so that you can reap the benefits of the latest biomechanical technology and Vio-Motion Support to boost your comfort without having to sacrifice the short women’s boot styles you love.

Booties vs. Ankle Boots: What’s The Difference?

Before you can get to shopping for the perfect pair of short boots for you, first let’s dive into what the primary differences are between booties and ankle boots so that you can narrow down your search to the short boot style that is best aligned with what you’re looking for.


The main difference between bootie and ankle boots is their height and where the shoe falls on the line of your leg. Booties are shorter in height and should ideally end right at your ankle, while ankle boots will end one to four inches above your ankle, like a Chelsea boot, combat boot, or work boot. Pretty simple, right? With this knowledge, you will easily be able to spot which short boots are booties and which are ankle boots. If you are still on the fence, try them on and see where they end in relation to your ankle to get a simple answer about whether the short boots you’re looking at are booties or ankle booties.


Now that you know the main difference between booties and ankle boots, the next step is to determine which style you will feel more comfortable wearing and will better serve the purpose you have in mind for your short boots. If you’re looking for a short leather boot that will bridge the gap between a traditional shoe and boot, then a bootie may be the right short stylish boot for you. Booties perfectly add the look of boots without the additional height of most boots. However, if you’re looking for a more substantial dress boot to pair with your wardrobe, an ankle boot is an easily transitional and practical boot that will add a dose of style to any outfit. No matter which option you choose, you can’t go wrong! Booties and ankle boots are both fashionable, fun, and comfortable boot options that can be a great addition to your footwear arsenal.

Our Tips for Choosing The Perfect Booties and Ankle Boots

Whether you’re looking for booties or ankle boots, or even a men’s boot, we want to make sure that as you search for the perfect pair of short boots, you feel empowered and prepared to find a casual boot or winter boot that will be supportive, comfortable, and versatile in your wardrobe. Easier said than done, right?


If you’ve bought a pair of short boots that you feel like are the ideal choice only to wear them for a full day out and find that you’re left with sore and aching feet or aren’t quite comfortable with their style, you’re not alone. It can be easy to imagine yourself wearing different styles of boots when you’re shopping only to realize later than they don’t really mesh with your personal style or to skimp on high-quality, supportive footwear for the sake of fashion.


At Vionic, we’ve built our business around making sure that you don’t have to choose between style and support, you can have both! But what do you look for to make sure you find boots that meet your fashion needs while also keeping you comfortable throughout the day? We’ve compiled our top tips for choosing booties and ankle boots to help you make sure you don’t experience buyer’s remorse once you settle on your perfect pair of short boots.

Always Honor Your Comfort Zone

While we always recommend having fun with your footwear and fashion, it’s also important to know what you are going to feel comfortable wearing so that you are purchasing items that you will get a significant amount of use out of, especially when you’re investing in long-term, high-quality footwear. Booties and ankle boots can be a staple in your wardrobe that you rely on time and time again to elevate your outfit and keep your feet protected and comfortable all day long, but for them to do that, you need to feel comfortable wearing them. We all have different comfort zones when it comes to fashion and footwear and that’s what makes everyone have a unique personal sense of style that reflects their attributes.


When you’re searching for booties and ankle boots, make sure that you honor your comfort zone and style. Love the look of a stiletto heel on ankle boots but know deep down that you won’t be able to wear high-heeled boots regularly? Opt for a thicker, medium height heel that will still give you a boost and a longer looking leg without leaving you feeling like you can’t wear your new boots. Planning to wear boots primarily for long days standing on your feet? Opt for a shorter heel or flat booties so that you can transition seamlessly between activities, such as walking, throughout the day without second-guessing your footwear one bit. To maximize how much you will wear your new short boots, be mindful of your comfort zone and style and make sure that the heeled booties you are looking at fall within what you feel comfortable with.


Look for Important Features

When you start looking for booties or ankle boots, it can be tempting to focus solely on the style elements of the boots, but there are other important features you should be on the lookout for to make sure the boots you choose are comfortable and durable. We recommend looking for short booties with good arch support and cushioning to keep your feet comfortable even when you spend all day running from one activity to another. You will also want to make sure that the boots are made with high-quality materials, such as suede and/or leather, so that they will be long-lasting and provide you with a comfortable fit. You will also want to take a look at the toe box and make sure that your feet fit comfortably inside the boots without being pressed up against the sides of the shoe (an indication that it may be too narrow), which can lead to a number of foot conditions. Check out our blog post, 5 Things to Look For When Buying Comfortable Booties, to help you find the comfort your feet need.

Booties and Ankle Boots: Outfit Inspiration 101

When you’re picking whether a bootie or an ankle boot will best serve your wardrobe, try thinking through some of the outfits you wear the most and what will be the best compliment to them. Whether you are looking for a fun pair of deer print booties or an everyday pair of black leather ankle boots, make sure your shoes fit the style you’re looking for with the arch support you crave. Below are a few outfit inspirations and the boot we would pair with them to spark your imagination.

A Cute Dress and Tights

The perfect outfit for any time of the year, a cute dress paired with tights is a great go-to outfit that you can style in so many different ways and is equally appropriate for the office or happy hour with friends. We would opt for a cute bootie dress shoe with a low heel (think one to two inches) for this outfit.

Dark Denim, Casual Top, and a Cozy Sweater

There are some outfits that you find yourself going back to again and again because they channel those perfect effortlessly fashionable stylish vibes while still being comfortable. This outfit does the trick and we would pair these dark denim skinny jeans with a pair of suede boots with a taller shaft (think three to four inches like a rain boot with a heel) in a neutral colored weather-resistant leather.

We hope this guide helps you find your perfect pair of booties or ankle boots! Check out our boots for all seasons to find your perfect pair of short or knee boots.


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