Did you know that wool socks keep your feet warm and dry in cold weather, and cool and dry in the heat? Find out the best wool socks to buy for any time of year.
Since the dawn of civilization, humans have herded sheep and spun wool fibers to make clothing. The ancient Romans are thought to be the first to have the genius idea to weave wool socks—the earliest pair date to the 2nd-century Roman fort of Vindolandia in Britain. A note inscribed on a stone tablet found at the site even reads, “send more socks.”
The Romans knew a good thing when they found it. Wool socks keep feet warm and dry in the winter and cool and dry in the summer. Wool socks wick perspiration from feet so that feet stay dry, but at the same time, they repel liquid—just one reason they’re great for hiking in all seasons. A natural, renewable resource, wool is durable and versatile—no wonder some of our favorite warm socks are made of wool! We poured through online reviews to find the best wool socks worth buying—your tootsies will thank us!
Note: Prices listed were accurate as of press time; pricing fluctuations may occur.
via amazon.comBest bargain wool socks
Starting at $16.99 for three pairs
Prized for being soft and lightweight, Merino wool socks typically have a higher price tag than those made with lower grades of wool. So these DG Hill socks, made with 80 percent Merino wool and priced between $17 and $22 for three pairs are a bargain indeed. Satisfied customers sing the praises of how these durable socks keep their feet warm and dry. One user says their feet were “toasty warm…on a trip to Iceland, Norway, and Sweden in January.” But one word of caution: wearers say these socks should be hand-washed and line-dried, not tossed in with your regular laundry. You may also want to check out these winter boots from Zappos you’ll want in your closet immediately.
via amazon.comBest wool sock for hiking and the outdoors
Starting at $22.05
Out of nearly 13,000 reviews on Amazon, a whopping 74 percent gave Danish Endurance Merino Wool Hiking and Walking Socks five stars. We like that these 3-pack Merino blend socks are available in a number of colors and sizes for women, children, and men, and that they are cushioned and reinforced for hiking and work boots. They’ve also got a friendly price—about $10 a pair. One user claims “there is some magic in these socks.” You be the judge!
via amazon.comBest lightweight wool sock
Starting at $9.63
Looking for socks that will keep your feet cool and dry in hot weather? Once again, it’s Merino wool to the rescue. The lightweight and versatile wool is famed for its natural wicking ability, meaning it draws heat and perspiration away from your feet. Smartwool City Slicker men’s crew socks have been on the market for a while and are a perennial best-seller. One user says they “keep their shape and elasticity very well,” and look nice to boot. The same user says that while one pair of Smartwool socks costs more than a value pack of regular socks, they are “well worth the dollars spent.” For women, lightweight Smartwool crew socks are available from Nordstrom.
via darntough.comBest tall wool sock
Devotees praise the design, comfort, and durability of the Women’s Yeti Over-the-Calf socks from Darn Tough. “Whoever worked on the style of this sock deserves a raise,” said one happy customer. Darn Tough, a Vermont company, promises that these 68 percent Merino wool socks will not slip, bunch, or blister. They guarantee their socks for life, so we guess they’ve got confidence in their product! We love the pretty blue and gray glacier design on this pair—as ideal for the slopes as they are for movie night at home.
via amazon.comBest wool crew sock
For a basic wool crew-length sock and a great bargain, look no further than these Ebmore wool blend socks. Sold in mixed or all-one-color five-packs, they’re a tremendous bargain since they come out to just a few dollars per sock. The length makes them perfect as a boot sock for ankle boots. One user says they’re “surprisingly thick and warm for the price.” We think so too!
via vivewear.comBest Best wool compression sock
You may reach for compression socks to reduce swelling in your legs and feet—especially if you sit at a desk all day, but Vive Wear graduated compression socks will also keep your tootsies toasty. Not only are they made of comfy-cozy organic alpaca and merino wool, but they have built-in electrical stimulation to promote circulation to keep your lower extremities feeling warm and energized. Compression socks are also great for people who stand all day at work, and to keep feet and ankles from swelling on long-haul flights.
via amazon.comMost stylish wool sock
Starting at $15.71
Buying the best wool socks doesn’t mean settling for bulky, bland socks that keep you warm but don’t do much to raise your fashion profile. Turns out, there are loads of stylish wool socks on the market—so many that it was hard to pick our favorites! For the intersection of quality and looks, we settled on Smartwool Saturnsphere (also available for men) as the most attractive option.
Best warm wool sock
For keeping feet warm and cozy when you’re spending time outdoors, or even in a chilly office, we like Swiftwick’s Pursuit 12 series, available for men and women. It’s made of 61% Merino wool and has a reinforced toe and heel, which Swiftwick says makes it perfect for skiing and snowboarding. Even if your winter sports consist of walking the dog around the block, this sock will keep your feet warm, and its wicking properties will help keep them dry on the slushiest of days. We also like that this knee-high sock has a 4-inch cuff, because nothing is more annoying than high socks that bunch up around your ankles!
via amazon.comBest wool sock for lounging
If your idea of a pair of wool socks involves staying indoors on chilly nights and enjoying a crackling fireplace, there’s a pair of fleece-lined Tibetan slipper socks with your name on them. They’re hand-knit, made from 100 percent wool, and lined with cozy fleece, plus they’re unisex and available in five multi-color combinations. One user says these are their “go-to pair of home slipper socks,” and that the padding on the bottom is just grippy enough to prevent slipping and sliding on hard-surface floors. We also love that the sale of these socks helps the rural Himalayan women who hand-make them.
via amazon.comBest Best wool sock for kids
$11.99 for six pairs
Keep the littlest toes in the family warm and toasty with these Eocom children’s wool socks. They come in a variety of designs and patterns to appeal to most kids, and the 45 percent wool content means they’re effective at keeping feet warm, wicking away moisture, and reducing odor. The socks are a bit bulky, so great for quiet winter days at home, or for wearing under snow boots or other roomy shoes. Note that some parent reviewers say they run small, so you may want to order a size up.
via amazon.comBest wool ankle sock
For running, tennis, biking, or any sport where you need a short, high-performance wool sock that won’t slip, look to Bombas Merino wool ankle socks for women or men. They’re 80 percent Merino, and come with a built-in arch support system and a blister tab (genius!) at the back of the ankle. One happy purchaser calls them “supremely comfortable” and another praises their non-slippiness. And this is one purchase you can feel good about—for every item of socks, underwear, or t-shirts purchased, they donate one item to the homeless.
via amazon.comBest wool sock for work
Starting at $24.95
For those employed in trades where heavy steel-toed work boots are part of the daily uniform—we feel you. You go through a lotta pairs of socks and in cold weather, those steel toes can feel like blocks of ice. Thaw out in a pair of Pembrook wool sport socks, made of 60 percent Merino wool. They feature a sturdy reinforced toe and heel, both of which are vulnerable points in socks worn with work boots. They’re also cushiony, so ideal for workers who are on their feet all day.