What Do Americans Call Wellies? (Inc Wellies History)

If you’re not British, it’s likely you don’t know what the heck a welly is.

But don’t worry- Americans have plenty of their own terms for rain boots. Here are some of the most popular American names for rain boots.

Enjoy! (And feel free to share this post with any non-Americans in your life who may be curious about this term!)

What Do Americans Call Wellies?

In the US, they typically refer to these as “rain boots.” Wellies are a type of rain boot or rubber boots with a flexible, rubber sole and a canvas upper.

They are popular in the UK and other countries but often called something different depending on where you are. They are sometimes called “wellington boots” or even “gumboots.”

Americans typically call them “rain boots,” “rubber boots,” or “waterproof shoes.” This is a go-to term for people all over the US.

Although you may still hear Americans refer to them as “wellies.”

wellies in different sizes

A History Of The Wellies in America

When it comes to the history of wellies in America, there are a few things that we have to consider. The first is that, even though the term “wellies” is a British term, Americans have been using rain boots for quite some time now.

In fact, rain boots were first introduced in America in the early 1800s. At this time, they were made out of rubber and were used primarily by farmers and other people who worked outdoors.

The use of rain boots continued to grow in America throughout the 1800s and early 1900s.

They began to be used by people in other professions, such as construction workers and policemen. And, in the 1920s, rain boots began to be mass-produced and sold in stores.

Duke Of Wellington

The term “wellies” didn’t enter American vernacular, however, until the 1970s. By this time, more women began to wear rain boots and more designs became available.  

Wellies became increasingly popular in America throughout the 1990s and 2000s — so much so that they were even featured in a few movies!

Another time you might hear Americans use the term “wellies” is when referring to rain boots that are made with a more stylish design. For example, a style of rain boot called Hunter wellies has become increasingly popular over the last decade.

Like most other types of shoes or boots, wellies now come in a variety of colours and sizes.

Did You Know – Wellie is a term that originated in the UK and it is most commonly used by English people to refer to rubber boots, which are also called “Wellington Boots” because of the Duke of Wellington.

The Different Types of Wellies Available in America

The different types of wellies available in America are typically made out of rubber or plastic and come in a variety of colours and styles.

You can find wellies that are short or tall, with a variety of patterns and designs. Some wellies even have insulation to keep your feet warm in cold weather.

Wellies are also available in a variety of heel sizes and with a range of soles. There are wedge heels, small flat heels, and larger block heels. The most popular type is the flat sole that has a grip for walking on wet or slippery surfaces.

The Different Names Used for Rain Boots in the US

Wellies are known as rain boots or gumboots in America. As previously mentioned, they are often made of rubber or plastic, although you can get leather wellies that look more like regular boots.

Wellies are also sometimes called “rubbers” or “Gumby boots.” Sometimes, people just use the word “boots” for short.

There are a few other names that you may hear used when referring to wellies. These include “overshoes” or “gaiters” or “galoshes”.

In some cases, rubber boots are referred to as “waders.”

Why Are Americans Loving The Wellies Trend?

So, why are Americans loving the wellies trend now? there are a few reasons.

First, they’re practical. They keep your feet dry in any weather conditions, whether it’s rain or snow.

Second, they’re stylish. You can wear them with any outfit, and they come in a variety of colours and styles.

Third, they’re comfortable. You can walk around in them all day with no discomfort.

Are All Boots That We Wear Outside Considered “Wellies”?

In the US, we typically refer to any type of boot that we wear outside as “rain boots.” This includes cowboy boots, work boots, and even snow boots.

While some people may call them “wellies,” this term is not as commonly used in the US.

All boots that we wear outside are not called “wellies”. That is a totally different term used in Great Britain and it is interchangeable with rubber overshoes or over boots.

Head over and take a look at our guide on everything you need to know about wellies if you still have more questions on the history of wellies.

womens cowboy style boots - rain boots


So there you have it- the answer to the question that’s been puzzling us all for years.

Americans call them to rain boots, and everyone else calls them wellies. Now we can all be on the same page when it comes to these essential pieces of footwear!

Although Americans have been slow to adopt the welly trend, it seems that we’re finally starting to come around.

The different types of wellies available in America are sure to please everyone, no matter what your style is.

Clearly, wellies aren’t going anywhere anytime soon- and we love it!