Chelsea boots are a style of ankle high boot that dates back to Victorian times as a popular horse riding accessory and easy to manage shoe option for busy women. The most easily recognizable characteristic of Chelsea boots is the stretchable elastic fabric that runs up the side of the boot from the heel to the ankle. This band of elastic allows the boot to be slipped on and off easily without the need for laces or other fasteners; additionally the elastic creates a tight seal around the ankle.
Unlike many other shoe styles the Chelsea boots is considered to be unisex and can be worn by both men and women. Though interestingly the boot is usually favored by one sex over the other during different time periods; during the Victorian era Chelsea boots were more popular with women, while in modern times they are more popular with men.