It’s a very good time to be on the hunt for the best winter socks, whether you’re looking for something useful and warm to hold your ankles in place on during the winter commute or something furry and neon to swim in a sea of navy and Braun to make a statement. The early 2010s were big years for bare ankles – and the no-show socks it took to pull the look off. Fast forward to 2019 and the flash of two or three inch socks is cool again, and so the market is flooded with colorful, textured styles to be seen and bent. And even better, the styles we love out there are made in thicker, more winter-friendly weights – good news for all of us, not just sock lovers, because it’s cold and, you know, warm. What we have to do to save our toes is also what we want to do to express our unique personalities, and life is a perfect marriage of form and function. At least below the knees. God help the brothers now walking around in silk shirts. Below are the best winter socks that we (and our cold feet) feel particularly good right now.
The best precious (but not too precious) winter socks
Paul Stuart cashmere blend ribbed sock
To survive the coldest winter, you need to find new ways to get your brain to believe that getting out of the house is a good idea. Donning cashmere socks that surround your toes in all that incredibly cozy, comfortably soft luxury is one of the most reliable ways we’ve found for staying positive in the face of the blistering cold weather. But pure cashmere comes at a significant cost – both in terms of your wallet (you have a hard time finding a pair for less than $ 100) and in terms of your time (hand-wash tube socks aren’t a good time for anyone). That’s why we love these Paul Stuart jams: they have all of the cashmere goodness you need to get your bum out the door and are just mixed with a little viscose and nylon for added texture and machine washability. The fact that they come at a relatively reasonable price of $ 55 and come in a dozen bow tie colors is just the icing on the cake.
The best high-performance winter socks
Smartwool Trekking heavy crew socks
When things are particularly dire outside – like at the polar vortex level, for example – these Smartwool socks are just what you want. Think of them as a full-fledged parka for your feet: thick enough that you worry they actually fit inside your boots (they will); Performance-oriented enough that your feet don’t completely overheat while on the go. A certain GQ employee wore these same socks when he spent several nights in a Quinzhee cabin in the backwoods of Northern Ontario, and he still has all toes. So, yes, they are the real deal.
The best workweek winter socks
If your budget doesn’t allow a drawer with the Paul Stuart numbers above, these Falke socks are a great alternative wool sock for everyday use at half the price. You have a healthy dose of cashmere in the mix, all in a package slim enough to fit inside your dress shoes and subtle enough to soothe even the most sober office dress codes.
The best stink free winter socks
American Trench Merino activity sock with silver
Do you have the kind of feet that people leave the room on before you untie your shoelaces? The typical socks from American Trench help. There’s antimicrobial silver knitted right into the heel and toe to help ward off odors at the source, and the breathable, naturally moisture-wicking merino wool that the rest is made of will keep your toes warm. A touch of acrylic spandex will keep them in place whether you’re hiking up a mountain or into the kitchen.
The best throwback winter socks
LLBean Merino Wool Ragg Socks, 2-pack
Nothing beats classic American style, and no one makes classics and Americans better than LLBean. Their wool-blend rag socks are some of the warmest on the market and are just as soft, nubby, and overall perfect as you remember. Plus, they’ll look amazing when they peek out of those duck boots that you hopefully remembered earlier this year.
The best earth-conscious winter socks
Maggies Organics cotton crew sock
Another option for the green-minded among us, Maggie’s knitwear is made in North Carolina from fair trade organic cotton and has stranger colors – like deep eggplants and bright green – than the more traditional ones. And who doesn’t have high quality warm socks at a sweet price?
The wallet-friendly sock
Uniqlo Heattech socks with low thickness
Uniqlo’s Heattech line is the GOAT when it comes to affordable, cold busting winter gear, and these deceptively slim, ribbed crew socks are no exception. Think of the moisture in your feet as poor, the heat as retained and the bacteria excreted as TF. At just under $ 7 a pop, you can afford to buy them in a handful of colors.
14 Other socks that we love
Rototo reversible brushed mohair sock
Mohair, mo ‘heat.
Howlin ‘Wally sock
Is it any surprise that the label behind Belgium’s best sweaters also makes great socks? These bouclé knit joints are like a warm, fluffy sweater for your feet.
Polo Ralph Lauren cable knit boot socks
Speaking of sweaters: cables are also great for socks.
Yoicy heavy thick wool socks, pack of 3
One of Amazon’s most popular socks is also the padding.
The Elder Statesman Yosemite dyed cashmere socks
These are the socks that you keep for a personal day.
Wigwam 40 under heavy boot socks
Use these to cushion and warm your precious toes in the worst of winter.
Williamston Alpaca Socks
Don’t let cashmere be in the spotlight. Alpaca is just as soft, luxurious, and deserves your attention.
Anonymous Ism waffle socks
Waffles are always a good solution – for breakfast and for socks.
Pantherella Thornham ribbed socks
Heavy wool, a dash of silk and perfect autumn colors make for an ideal pair of socks.
CHUP Fair Isle socks
The best Fair Isle you can get actually comes from another island: Japan.
Gucci striped cotton blend jacquard socks with embossed logo
This happens when your fleece jacket changes job.
Darn Tough Wanderer Micro Crew Cushion Sock
Thousands of die-hard hikers can’t be wrong. Legendary for their durability, these hiking socks have seamless toes and are thermoregulated with the best.
Patagonia lightweight Merino Daily Crew socks
Patagonia’s lightweight footwarmers are available in four different sizes for a more comfortable fit.
LLBean Shearling insoles
Increase the toastiness of all your socks by tucking these fluffy bad guys in your boots.
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