If you don’t give a lot of thought to sock care, no worries. After all, you’re not alone. But if you want to get the most life from your socks, and help keep them cozy and comfortable on your feet, there is a right way and wrong way of sock care. Here’s a quick look:
1. THE BEST WAY TO WASH SOCKS IS TO MACHINE WASH THEM
For ideal results, wash them in cold water with a mild detergent. Also, set your machine to a gentle cycle.
2. KEEP SHARP OBJECTS AWAY FROM YOUR SOCKS
Sounds obvious, but sharp objects include long toenails – so keep your nails trimmed and tidy. Otherwise, you run the risk of causing irreparable damage to your favorite pair of socks.
3. DON’T SCALD YOUR SOCKS
A tip which goes hand-in-hand with the first tip about washing them in cold water.
4. DON’T TUMBLE DRY YOUR SOCKS
The average dryer kicks out a ton of hot air and the spinning motion combined with hot air pulls out small fibers in your socks. If you do tumble dry your socks, do so at the lowest heat setting. Excess dryer heat also causes the elastic in the top band of socks to break down, which stretches them out and shortens their lifespan.
5. IF YOU DON’T TUMBLE DRY YOUR SOCKS, YOU CAN HANG THEM ON A CLOTHESLINE UNTIL THEY’RE DRY
6. DON’T BLEACH
Never bleach your socks or use other chemicals that may cause them damage.
7. WASH YOUR SOCKS INSIDE-OUT
Washing your socks inside-out will keep excess lint from accumulating on them. Trying to get the white lint out of your darks socks is never fun. That said, you want the inside of your sock accumulating lint, the outside of it. If you want to avoid lint, you can wash your socks separately from other items – but not every man is willing to go to those lengths.
8. NEVER IRON YOUR SOCKS
THE GREAT DEBATE: SOCKS OR NO SOCKS?
With summer fast approaching, the debate among men – and fashion experts up – about whether to wear socks or no socks is sure to heat up like the weather. If you live in a warm-weather climate, the debate probably is heated enough.
Going sockless is a look favored by many men today, albeit a look that lends itself to a variety of opinions worldwide. While Americans like to think they invented the look, the fact is that men in Europe have worn shoes without socks for ages. It is, however, a look that’s gained momentum in the U.S. in recent years.
So, what gives? Is there a right and wrong in this debate?
The answer, in large part, depends on the circumstances, what you wear, etc.
PROS OF WEARING SOCKS
- If nothing else, you have to admire socks for their versatility. They’re a great accessory for pulling an outfit together, but also have multiple uses depending on the type of sock.
- They keep your feet dry – in most cases, especially those of the wicking variety, and keep your feet warm when temperatures drop.
- They provide cushioning, can help prevent blisters and, well, we could go on and on.
- Socks are often comfortable, and their warmth provides welcome relief the temperatures start their descent in late fall.
- They can add a bit of splash to your wardrobe, or a more sedated look of sophistication.
CONS OF WEARING SOCKS
- Some shoes just don’t look good when worn with socks. Boat shoes for example, or sandals, although the socks with sandals look isn’t quite the no-no it used to be.
- Socks can bunch up
- They can become too warm.
- They may make your feet sweat
PROS OF WEARING NO SOCKS
- Going sockless on a warm day keeps your feet cooler.
- It can also create a sophisticated look that lets people see that you know what you’re doing fashion-wise – at least if done appropriately.
CONS OF NOT WEARING SOCKS
- Walking around in a leather shoe all day without socks is asking for sweat-induced trouble.
- Not wearing socks increases your risks of blisters and other irritations for which socks provide you protection
- Not wearing socks with certain footwear or situations may make you look uncouth.
Which leads us to our next question:
WHEN IS IT OK TO GO WITHOUT SOCKS?
There are a few rules to follow when it comes to wearing shoes with no socks, at least according to fashion experts.
- When wearing shoes with no socks, it’s best to wear slim-fitting pants or jeans.
- Your pants and jeans should finish above the ankle.
- Going without socks may make you look more sophisticated but keep in mind that certain formal situations require you to wear socks with your dress shoes.
- Break in your shoes before going sockless in them. Doing so helps prevent blisters.
- You need to do more than just washing your feet before going sockless or you risk never-welcome foot odor. So, scrub your feet vigorously and then line the insides of your shoes with baking powder, baby powder, or anything that keeps bacteria and fungus at bay.
- Loafers and boat shoes are great options if you prefer to go sockless. Some even argue that you should choose loafers for your first foray into the world of no socks. It’s safe and it looks good.
CHOOSING THE BEST SOCKS FOR MEN
It’s safe to say that your buying choices aren’t limited when it comes to socks. Socks abound and you can find them for sale in many, many places. For our purposes, so many choices mean doing a lot of research in selecting products that we think stand above the rest.
Choosing the best socks among a mountain of socks available in every style imaginable, came down to a few important things for us: comfort, how well they handle moisture, what type of clothing they best go with, and durability.
As always, we took into account the reviews, of others, particularly the reviews of those who’ve worn the socks on a daily basis. Price is always a consideration, as well, although not an overriding concern in our reviews of the best socks.
Do you have a favorite pair of socks? If so, why do you like them? And, have you worn any of those listed here? We welcome your comments and suggestions!