When you think about the gear you need to run, you probably don’t first picture socks. And while the best running socks aren’t the most important part of your ensemble, the right pair of socks can cushion impact, keep your feet dry, and make sure you’re comfortable through your run or while strength training. Here are our top six picks for best running socks.
Best running socks For Women
Any distance runner is familiar with getting blisters, especially on long runs or while wearing shoes that aren’t broken in yet. These socks have a sleek, streamlined look that’s built from functionality–wide mesh panels and a mohair/Drynamix construction keep you comfortable, and the seamless design means you won’t have ugly or uncomfortable lines in your feet after a run. And in a world full of no-show socks, this offers a high-quality quarter-sock option.
- Very comfortable and breathable
- No seams
- Comes in many colors
- Somewhat expensive per pair
- Some runners may prefer a lower-profile design
Do your toes feel uncomfortably packed into your current socks? If so, these unique socks might be the right fit. They might look like the novelty toe socks that were popular years ago, but they’re high-performance sports gear. While they have a quality breathable construction like many high-end socks, the key is in the separate toes. This helps prevent blisters and sweat buildup, and it lets your toes spread out naturally as you run. If you feel as though traditional designs aren’t the best running socks for you, these toe socks might be the right choice.
- Unique toe-separation design for comfort
- Very breathable
- No-show design
- If you aren’t used to it, toe design can be an adjustment
- Somewhat expensive
These socks offer a basic, no frills design with much more cushion than cheaply-made socks. They have a wicking action that helps keep your feet comfortable and dry, even in humid conditions. They also come in a variety of colors ranging from understated black to bright hot pink. And as a sock that’s more technologically advanced than most, they have a specialized arch compression system that reduces pain and pronation, which helps protect foot health.
- More advanced cushioning than many socks
- Wide color variety
- More expensive than some running socks
- S/M/L sizing makes it a little difficult to find your size.
Best Running socks For Men
These socks offer a well-made but still economical option. Made largely of polyester, these socks also have breathable mesh uppers to keep you cool. The combination of sole cushioning and a built-in arch support helps reduce foot pain and prevent arch collapse. These socks come in two stripe-accented colors, and they also come in three-pair packs.
- More affordable than many options
- Ventilation for comfort
- Cushioned and supportive
- May not be as supportive as some higher-end socks
- Few color options
If you’re someone who always feels weighted down by socks, you need a super-light option. And these socks deliver–they’re designed to be an anatomically-correct fit that feels like a second skin. The addition of spandex makes them extra-light while still being very supportive. And if you like colors, you’re in luck–these socks come in plenty of bright colors, as well as more traditional shades like black and white.
- Ultra lightweight for comfort
- Very supportive
- Come in many colors
- Some runners may not like the feel of spandex on their feet
- A little more expensive than some socks
Sometimes, you just need an affordable and comfortable athletic sock. These socks come in an affordable six-pair pack. They also are ankle socks, which are great if you want to avoid no-show socks or you prefer a little ankle coverage. Even though they’re very affordable, they are still very breathable, with a cushioned toe and sole for a more comfortable run. If the best running socks for you are a great bargain, this is one worth trying.
- Very affordable
- Cushioned and breathable
- Higher end socks may have more breathability
- Not much color variety
In conclusion, finding the right gear for your run may take some time and research, but having the right gear makes the difference between being immersed in your run and thinking “why are we running?” Hopefully, with the help of this guide, you can narrow down your choices before deciding. And with new gear that’s comfortable and supportive, your next run is sure to be your best yet, whether it’s on a running machine or outdoors.
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