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9 best boots for fall, according to stylists in 2021

Whether you're loving cowboy boots or fringe this season, these expert-approved trends deserve a place in your closet.
Overhead of someone wearing plaid and black boots, studded block heels ankle boots, beige Diesel boot and someone wearing stylish black shiny leather pointed block heels ankle boots
Christian Vierig / Contributor / Getty Images / Edward Berthelot / Contributor / Getty Images / Jeremy Moeller / Contributor / Getty Images

September is already here and days are starting to get shorter which can only mean one thing: Fall is almost here. As temperatures start to cool down, it's time for us to start turning over our wardrobes and breaking out our cozy sweaters and cardigans for the season.

Fall is also known for being peak boot season and, with so many different trends circulating this year, it can be hard to figure out which direction to go. To help narrow down the choices, Shop TODAY spoke to two stylists about which fall boot trends this year are actually worth it and styles you should have.

"Boots aren't a trend; they're a lifestyle," said costume designer and stylist Mandi Line. Line has worked on shows like "Pretty Little Liars," "Shameless" and "Faking It" on MTV.

"I think it's going to be a really interesting year for fashion and style and how women are expressing themselves because we have been in a super luxurious comfort zone with our slippers or our Uggs or whatnot," style coach Leena Alsulaiman told us. "What I'm seeing with my clients and with myself, even, is that now is the opportunity to say, 'Okay, now people are seeing things, so I'm going to make the effort.'"

For Line, boots are a year-round staple but notes that fall is when you see them most. "I was in Nordstrom the other day... in the shoe department and there used to be, like, five boots a season. Now there are, like, 20 different types of boots," she said.

Spending a little more on your boot of choice is likely to pay off in the long run. "If you invest in a good boot, a good hat and a good bag, that [stuff] should not go out of style," Line told us. "Put your money toward the ones that you can [keep wearing]."

"Buying things that you know are going to last [is how] you end up owning a piece that later on becomes vintage," Alsulaiman said.

While it may be tempting to buy a boot because you have one specific outfit in mind for it, Alsulaiman recommends opting for something that you'll able able to use more than once, especially if you don't already have a vast boot collection. "Find a color that you would be able to wear enough times to make it worth the buy," she advised.

She recommends going for staple colors like blacks and browns, especially if you're still building your collection. If you're going to buy a colored boot, she said, "Go for a color that you know you have enough in your wardrobe that can go with it."

However, if you have an outfit in mind that just needs a boot you know you won't wear much or even if you're unsure about a boot style but want to try it, Alsulaiman says to check stores like H&M or Zara because they tend to have affordable, trendy options. "I've done that with cowboy boots," she told us. "To test out the waters before I really jumped into it, I got myself a pair from Zara."

Here are some of the best trendy fall boots to have this season, according to stylist tips and recommendations.

Best trendy fall boots, according to stylists

Lucky Brand Waruu Platform Boot

"One of my all-time go-tos that have never gone out of style but are all of a sudden coming back in are the platform boot," Line told us. "It's all the '70s type of platform boots. The platform boot is everywhere right now."

When styling someone with a platform boot, Line likes to hide them under a wide-leg jean, another style we've seen make waves in fashion recently. These platform boots from Lucky Brand have a 4.7-star average on DSW's website and feature a smaller heel so you can wear them on a day-to-day basis.

Roper Riley Western Boot

Line is a fan of the cowboy boot trend we saw earlier this summer, while Alsulaiman admitted that she was apprehensive of the style at first. "They are actually pretty comfortable. If you can put together an outfit that [is] cohesive, it really works well," Alsulaiman said.

If you're thinking about trying the trend, opt for this pair you can find on Amazon for less than $70. They have a 4.6-star average and over 2,000 verified five-star ratings. They even come in other colors like red, tan and black.

Jeffrey Campbell Fringed Western Boots

"Against all that I know and love from the '80s and '90s — they didn't want to come back, they're coming back strong and cute and a little taller than when I was young — the fringe boot is taking over, but in color," Line said.

She's been seeing a combination of the fringe and slouchy styles, specifically calling out this rust-colored pair from Jeffrey Campbell. With these boots, Line recommends wearing a sleek, darker Spanx legging. "A little more edgy, so it's not like Bon Jovi is back," she said.

Madden Girl Kamora Platform Chelsea Boots

This boot combines two different styles: the platform style, which Line is a fan of, and the Chelsea style, which Alsulaiman is a fan of. "For me, a staple I have is two or three black Chelsea-style chunky boots because... if you're wearing a dress, it can make it not seem as fancy. And of course you can wear it with jeans and pants and whatnot," Alsulaiman told us.

One five-star reviewer on Kohl's website said, "I love the edgy look and they look fly with just about any of my looks! The quality is great and worth the price!"

Free People Sage Fringe Over-The-Knee Boots

"Free People's boots are insane. They're always good," Line raved. She called out these fringe over-the-knee boots as a pair even she would wear! They feature stud embellishments around the shoe and have a Western-inspired pointed toe.

Free People Wild Rose Slouch Boots

"The slouch boot is also something that's huge right now," Line said before mentioning this pair from Free People. "It's not too structured, it's not too cowboy, but it's just got a little flair. I think this is a good boot for the girl who's like 'I can be edgy, right? I can do this.'"

Franco Sarto Katherine High Shaft Boots

"For me, a really big newcomer, in a sense... is knee-high boots that are really structured," Alsulaiman said. "It's great because you can wear it under a skirt, under a dress [or] under jeans or trousers. We're seeing a lot of mini lengths in skirts so that works really well with it." This boot combines the high-knee style with a pointy toe, another boot trend Alsulaimann pointed out.

Aside from the pointed toe, this boot also features a 3 1/2-inch block heel, a zip closure and metallic heel detailing. These can easily become your go-to boot for everything from dressier events to a day at the office.

Vince Camuto Alimber Slouch Boots

Line recommends these Vince Camuto boots for the slouchy style. She recommends pairing it with a skinny pant to balance out your look. "Something sleek: That's the key. You don't want slouchy with slouchy," she advised.

Kenneth Cole REACTION Side Way Ankle Boot

These Kenneth Cole boots are perfect for anyone looking for a shorter heel. Reviewers love these shoes because they are stylish, sturdy and, most importantly, comfortable! "I am a hairdresser and can wear these all day at work and be comfortable," one five-star Amazon reviewer wrote. They also come in other colors like black, navy, burgundy and leopard.

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