You may know footwear startup M.Gemi for its colorful loafers - but here's why its ankle boots are the real standout

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  • Italian footwear startup and direct-to-consumer brand M.Gemi makes some of the highest quality footwear you can find at a fraction of typical retail prices.
  • You may know of it because of their Instagram-famous loafers, but the $348 Corsa ankle boots are one of their standout styles.
  • I tried the buttery-smooth leather version, and I'm never going back to my Sam Edelmans.

There's a chill in the air that smells distinctly crisp and fresh. The trees are officially turning and the leaves are beginning to dance to the ground. Soon, they'll be dry and crunchy beneath your feet, just begging to be stepped on.

All this to say that it's finally time to break out the cozy knit sweaters, hot apple cider (superior to the PSL in every way), and fashion's most gracious offering to our feet: ankle boots.

Ankle boots, in my opinion, are the white sneakers of cold weather. A good pair with a walkable heel height can be worn for pretty much any activity and with almost any outfit. But if you asked me to dream up my perfect pair, I wouldn't even bother - because Italian footwear startup M.Gemi has already made them.

Crafted in artisan Italian workshops with buttery soft leather or suede, The Corsa ankle boot is the most comfortable I've ever worn - and the most versatile, too. You may recognize the brand for its classic suede loafers, but if you ask me, its ankle boots are the real standout design.

The silhouette has a very subtle hint of '70s style with an elongated, fitted shaft and sleek sole. They are, in short, the perfect ankle boots for everyday wear, offering a hard-to-nail combination of form and function.

The leather pairs come in deep black and saturated cognac. I got my black leather pair in my regular size, a 7.5, which was definitely the right call. When I first tried them on, I was surprised that they were as soft and pliable as they are - from the look of the photos on their website, I thought the shaft would be a lot stiffer and more likely to cause blisters at the top (which is where most boots tend to get me). Instead, they're malleable enough to move with you as you walk, but thick enough to look and feel substantial. I've never gotten a blister from them, and their wearability straight from the box is just one thing that makes them so worthy of their $348 price tag.

Read more: Why M.Gemi's Stellato Sacchetto flats are sure to sell out again this fall

The heel height is also totally manageable at just over two inches, which means I can run around the city and walk around the office without wanting to scream. I have no patience for discomfort on my commute in particular (why torture my feet when taking the subway is hellacious enough?), and these adhere to my strict rule of footwear in which I could run to catch a train if needed.

The boots come in both leather and suede, the former of which has two heel options: wrapped in leather, or stacked and exposed. I have the leather-wrapped pair (which I find to be a little more versatile for dressing up and down), but the stacked heel is a great option for anyone who's concerned about scratches or wants something a little more casual.

The richly colored suede pairs do have suede-wrapped heels, which look stunning, but are much more prone to show signs of wear. If you're one of those rare, magical women who knows how to keep suede boots clean, I don't think you could possibly regret getting a suede pair.

Overall, I can't recommend these boots enough to anyone who feels they're within a reasonable price range. Though they're not cheap, the quality is the same as any pair you'd get from Prada or another luxury brand - just at a drastically lower price. And if you decide you don't love them or you need another size, you can take advantage of their complementary return or exchange program.

M.Gemi Corsa Leather Boots, $348

M.Gemi Corsa Suede Boots, $348

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