What’s in a sock?

Posted by Douglas B. Wimmer on

Isn’t a sock just a sock? Well, it depends on what you’re using it for. When looking for socks for church or for a special occasion, it really doesn’t matter what your socks are made of or what benefits they have. It really doesn’t. Do you like how they look? That’s a great reason to buy a sock. Do you like how they feel? Again, a perfectly fine reason to choose your Sunday socks.

But what about if you’re planning to be in them for a long time? Walking 10 or 15 miles in a day? Using them in a climate where they constantly get drenched with water, sweat… or maybe a little of both? How about the places where it’s so cold your phone stops working and people can only see your eyes through the beanie, scarf, and heavy jacket combo you’re wearing that day?

In those occasions, a sock is not just a sock. They’re one of the strongest lines of defense between you and the elements. Which is why you may want to take a few of your most impressive fun socks for special occasions but the majority of them be focused on what they do for your feet to keep them healthy and comfortable all day long.

A wicking sock like our CTR Clothing Drymax sock is essential to a healthy foot over the long term. A cushion foot will offer comfort and support a thin sock just can’t. Also, making sure your feet are dry is a huge step in keeping blisters at bay, particularly during the first few months when your feet are getting used to the heavy workload of everyday mission life. A sock like the Drymax does both. (A cool video explaining how it does all that is below)

Most missionaries will use a sock like the Drymax for their everyday wear while supplementing with a few others for fashion or colder weather.

Which brings up the idea of socks more tailored for cold weather climates. You know when your socks aren’t cutting it the first big temperature drop of the year. You’ll feel it and maybe even try the old standby method of doubling up on socks to keep your tootsies warm. That may work to a degree, but nothing keeps your tootsies toastier than a genuine wool-based sock.

We know. Wool is itchy and rough. Images of beefy hiking socks or sweaters from Scotland immediately spring to mind when you hear the word wool. Forget all about those. Invest in a Merino wool sock and it’ll make all the difference when it’s -16°F.

What is Merino wool? Well, to put it simply, it is one of the finest and softest wools in the world. So say goodbye to the idea of itchy and irritating wools. It is naturally anti-microbial, washable, and has an extremely broad temperature spectrum. Our two Merino-based wool socks are great examples of the benefits of Merino wool construction.

One, called the Vagden sock is built much like our CTR Drymax sock with a cushion foot and excellent wicking, but the Merino will do a better job of keeping you warm even when wet. (Another natural property of wool.) Socks of this weight are generally good from 80°F down to around 0-10°F.

When things get colder than that, you’re going to need something more serious. We recommend still sticking with Merino wool but kicking it up a notch to a winter sock like the Icelandic sock. Something more akin to a sweater for your foot. Still soft, still excellent at wicking and moisture management, but designed to go down to 30°F below Zero (-30°F).

All in all, don’t skimp out on quality, durable socks. If you’re going to splurge, we recommend you invest in your feet. After all, you only get one pair.

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