Best Socks: Keep Your Feet Warm and Comfortable All-Day Long
These top socks work for a variety of activities
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BY Noelle Talmon / LAST UPDATED ON March 17, 2021
If you ever want a lesson in the importance of paying attention to the little things in life, try walking around all day in uncomfortable socks. We wouldn’t wish that on anyone, which is why we’ve put together a list of the best socks you can buy. The options below are so comfortable, you may never want to take them off (but please do—even the best socks get a little smelly after a few days).
Made of a combination of Merino wool and Lycra, these Vermont-made socks cling to your legs without bunching, giving you both warmth and support. While made to wear with boots, you can pair them with other casual shoes as well.
- Seamless toe is extremely comfortable and also reduces the risk of blisters
- There’s plenty of cushioning on the mid-sole, giving you comfort and support with every step
- They may cause your feet to sweat more than other socks due to their heavier material
- Lycra can make them a little too tight for some users
Athletic people will love these socks as they’re made using moisture-wicking materials. They’re also extremely air-permeable, enabling your feet to stay cool and breathe, regardless of what you’re doing.
- Lots of compression and support in the arch helps to cut down on foot pain and potentially reduce the risk of injury
- They hug your ankle snugly, so they shouldn’t slip in the middle of frantic competition
- They tend to pill with repeated use, so you may have to replace them faster than other pairs of socks
- They’re also thick for athletic socks, which could reduce the amount of space you have in your shoes
This unisex pair is a simple, no-frills option that gets the job done without being flashy. There’s ample padding throughout each sock, and special attention is paid to the heel and forefoot.
- Made with highly durable fibers, these socks should survive for months, even with regular use
- Padding makes them an excellent choice for sports that require a lot of starting and stopping, like tennis or basketball
- While they’re attractive when clean, they attract dirt and mud-and it shows
- All that padding may make some users feel a little claustrophobic, as it makes the socks tighter than some other models
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- Make sure the socks you buy are appropriate for the activities you engage in as well as the shoes you pair with them. You may need to buy several different styles so that you have an appropriate pair for just about any situation.
- Padding can definitely make socks more comfortable, but it can also make them feel tighter and hotter. If your shoes have plenty of padding already, you may be able to skimp on this feature when shopping for socks.
- If the room clears out every time you take your shoes off, then you’ll want socks that can control the amount of sweat your feet produce. Look for options that wick away moisture, which can help cut down on bad odors.
Q: What’s the best way to care for socks?
It’s impossible to give a one-size-fits-all answer to this question because that depends largely on the materials the sock is made of. Be sure to read the label. In general, you should wash them in cold water and tumble dry them. Avoid bleaches or other harsh chemicals.
Q: Does it matter whether I wear crew or ankle socks?
One is not necessarily better than the other, but each is better suited for certain occasions. Crew socks pair well with boots or high-top sneakers and provide more warmth and support to your calves. Ankle socks are usually better suited for athletic endeavors and create sleek lines when worn with low-top sneakers.
Q: Is there any way to prevent my socks from slipping and sliding?
The best way to do this is to buy the right size. Also, buy socks made with form-fitting materials like lycra or spandex. These will cling to your feet, reducing the risk of slippage, but they will also feel tighter than regular cotton socks.
The Darn Tough Full-Cushion Socks are an excellent choice for anyone who wants warmth and comfort, especially hikers. They stay in place well with little bunching or sliding, so you should be comfortable and blister-free all day long.
Athletic types should give the CS CelerSport Low-Cut Tab Socks a try, as they can wick sweat away while you work out, ensuring you won’t knock everyone in the locker room unconscious when you take your shoes off after the game.