When running on an outdoor trail, there’s nothing more uncomfortable than rocks and debris getting inside your shoes, especially when it leads to blisters. Thankfully, trail gaiters are an easy solution to the problem. They’re specially made pieces of fabric that strap onto the top of running shoes to protect your feet from the elements. To help you find the best style for your money, we’ve rounded up some of the best trail gaiters for your next outdoor adventure. Some are even waterproof, making them ideal to wear in light snow or rain.
For more than 75 years, Footwear News has been the shoe authority. Our coverage spans top industry news, retail trends, head-to-toe fashion, athletic and outdoor analysis and more. Footwear News’ global network of editors has carefully curated all product selections featured using our expansive brand knowledge and thorough research to find quality, long-lasting items. If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on our website, we may receive an affiliate commission.
1. Salomon Trail Gaiters
Salomon Trail Gaiters are meant to keep your trail shoes protected with their sturdy materials and easy-to-use design, complete with hook-and-loop closures.
Pros: The hook-and-loop closure allows for a secure, custom fit on the ankle and the shoe so you won’t feel it slip; the outsole strap ensures a comfortable wear every time.
Cons: These gaiters are meant to be worn with trail shoes, not regular sneakers.
2. Winomo Adjustable Ankle Gaiters
Winomo’s gaiters are made of soft and lightweight fabric that blocks out water, snow, rain and mud.
Pros: These higher gaiters come with an adjustable high-density elastic cord around the ankle as well as a snap fastener hook around the bottom of the shoe so they stay put. The webbing cord in the bottom of the gaiter allows it to be used over hiking shoes and/or over waterproof pants.
Cons: The one size fits all sits differently depending on the individual shoe size.
3. Razer Gaiters Trail Running Gaiters
Razer Gaiters’ Trail Running Gaiters are a bright option with a reflective rear stripe so you can be seen on the trail in low light.
Pros: The metal shoelace hook and durable Hypalon under-arch strap keep these gaiters in place, while helping with easy on-off removal. The fit works for both women and men and helps prevent irritation from shoes.
Cons: The bright color may be harder to pair with colored trail shoes and outfits.