9 of the best running socks for 2022

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Many brands make socks specially designed for runners. The purpose of these socks is generally to keep a person’s feet dry and improve circulation. They can also help prevent blisters.

This article covers running socks in more detail, including how to choose them and their pros and cons. It also suggests nine specific products to consider and looks at ways to protect foot health.

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Running socks are made from a breathable, quick-drying fabric that keeps feet dry while a person is running. They also have extra padding on the toes, heel, and ball of the foot, which can protect against blisters during high intensity activities and longer runs.

Some running socks also have a compression design to improve blood flow from the legs or ankles to the heart. This improvement in blood flow can reduce the amount of lactic acid that builds up.

Researchers have studied the effects of compression elements in socks, which many running socks include.

A 2019 study found that wearing compression socks while running can have a positive effect on performance. Researchers suggest that this may be because socks improve oxygen supply and reduce muscle oscillations. However, they also note that the underlying reason for the performance improvement in the study was not clear.

Another 2017 study examined the effects of the compression socks that participants wore between repeated running bouts. Researchers conclude that socks can help recovery between workouts and improve performance afterwards.

A person may wish to consider the following characteristics when choosing running socks:

  • Equipment: People should avoid wearing cotton socks because they can absorb water and cause blisters. The American Wool Council states that merino wool is a fiber that can regulate temperature and wick moisture away from the foot. It is also odor resistant.
  • Seamless construction: Running socks should have a seamless construction which can reduce irritation.
  • Compressive fit: Some running socks compress muscles, improve circulation, and potentially increase recovery time.
  • Arch support: Some products have an elasticated material to support the arch of the foot and keep the sock in place.

Below we take a look at some of the best running socks available for purchase.

Please note that the author of this article has not tried any of these products. All information is purely research based and correct at the time of posting.

Swiftwick Aspire Four

For a wide range of colors

Swiftwick offers these thin and breathable socks, which provide firm compression. This compression helps support the contours of the foot and reduce fatigue.

The socks also have a moisture wicking feature to keep feet cool, dry and blister-free.

Other features include:

  • a seamless toe box to reduce friction
  • a mesh sole
  • arch band support to keep socks in place
  • a Y heel to prevent the socks from slipping

Plus, they come in nine different colors and come in four sizes.

They cost $ 17.99.

Rockay razer

For environmentally conscious customers

The Rockay Razer Running Socks are made with 100% recycled materials. They also come with compression support and technical mesh.

Other features include:

  • arch support
  • an anti-odor coating
  • anti-blister construction

These running socks are available in eight different colors and four sizes.

The price is $ 201.12 for a pack of 12 pairs.

Balega Blister Resist Quarter

For the mohair

Balega running socks have a moisture wicking design that helps keep feet cool and dry.

They are made from mohair, which is suitable for sensitive skin because it protects against pure friction blisters.

Other features include:

  • an extra-deep heel pocket
  • an elastic grip construction to prevent slipping
  • microfiber mesh ventilation panels

The company also manufactures these running shoes in eight different colors and up to four sizes. The size range depends on the color that a person chooses.

These socks cost $ 17.00.

Saucony Inferno merino wool blend

For a merino wool blend material

These merino wool blend socks have an ultra soft design that wicks away moisture. They also have an arch support system which provides a secure and stable fit.

In addition, they have a seamless toe, which can prevent irritation.

These running socks are available in two colors and four sizes.

The price is $ 22.00 for three pairs.

Drymax Hyper Thin Running Mini Crew

For a lightweight design

According to the company, these weigh less than 12 grams in the large size.

They are made from:

  • olefin
  • polyester
  • spandex
  • nylon

These socks also feature a dual-layer sweat-wicking system and mesh stripe vents for added breathability.

They cost $ 13 and come in five sizes and six colors.

High Performance Cushion No Show Tab

For a design without presentation

These running socks have a seamless toe, moisture-wicking fibers and a tailored fit. They feature an invisible tab that sits under the ankle and provides blister protection.

They consist of spandex, polyester and nylon.

Other features include:

  • Lycra power bands that support the foot
  • high density padding that provides protection during high impact activities
  • mesh construction for breathability

This product is available in seven different colors and three sizes.

The price is $ 13.00.

FITS Ultra Light Runner – No Show

For a flat knit design

FITS produces these merino wool socks, which have a flat knit, invisible design and a fully ventilated top for breathability.

Other features include:

  • odor resistant and antimicrobial material
  • elastic and moisture-wicking fibers
  • extra padding in the toe, arch and heel area
  • a full contact fit
  • a 2 year warranty

Customers can choose from two colors and five sizes.

They cost $ 15.99.

Under Armor Unisex Run Cushion No Show Tab

For a Y heel pocket

These running socks have an invisible design and feature a Y heel pocket for added comfort.

Other features include:

  • dynamic arch support that reduces fatigue
  • anti-odor technology
  • anti-perspiration material

People can choose between two different colors and two sizes.

The price is $ 13.00.

Thorlos Running Maximum Cushion Ankle – JMX

For toe cushioning

These running socks are made in the USA from an acrylic blend.

They have:

  • flat knit instep and arch padding for a secure fit
  • moisture wicking material
  • toe padding for protection

The socks are available in five colors and three sizes.

They cost $ 13.99.

People may wish to weigh the pros and cons of running socks before making a purchase. These include:

People should have regular foot checks and see a doctor if they have foot problems, as these can indicate other underlying health issues.

There are steps a person can take at home to reduce the risk of common foot problems. For example, the American Orthopedic Foot & Ankle Society (AOFAS) recommends that people cut their toenails crosswise. Cutting them short on the sides can result in ingrown toenails.

The AOFAS also states that wearing shoes that are suitable for the shape of the foot can prevent corns, blisters and calluses.

Another foot problem that older people experience more frequently is toenail fungus. Toenail fungus can develop when you walk barefoot in a humid environment or because of diabetes, a poor immune system, or circulation problems.

Injuries can also affect the feet. The University of California at San Francisco provides some tips for preventing foot and ankle injuries that can be helpful for people who run or play other sports.

These include:

  • warm-up before exercise
  • wear athletic shoes that hug the shape of the foot
  • stopping activity if foot and ankle pain develops
  • avoid uneven surfaces

Running socks are one type of clothing that can be beneficial for runners. They can improve blood circulation, reduce muscle fatigue, and shorten recovery time.

When shopping for running socks, features that people may want to consider include material, padding, and arch support. A person should also choose a product that suits them well.

It is important to consider the overall health of the feet when exercising, and a person should speak to their doctor if they have any concerns.

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