Editor’s note: this is part two in our mini series Why “good” socks matter. We rounded up the horror (and success!) stories from our Impi team to give the top five reasons why good socks matter over in part 1. Here’s the science behind how good socks are “good,” and how to choose the perfect sock for you.
Why “good” socks are good
So how exactly do good socks prevent blisters, toenail loss, heel slipping, and keep your feet happy? Designed to snugly hug your feet, our contoured socks don’t shift around and cause friction-- the source of blisters. A perk further ensured by the hand-linked, seamless toe closure. Four sizes to choose from further ensure your socks fit your feet perfectly.
Moisture is another source of blisters, and strategically-placed ventilation panels enhance cooling and wicking processes for a clean, dry fit. The result: all Balegas are moisture wicking socks! Our socks stay up in part thanks to an extra deep heel pocket. Knit with 30 percent more stitches that add branches to the heel, our socks keep your heel fully protected and prevent lateral stretch. Manufactured in state-of-the-art facilities in Cape Town, South Africa and Hickory, North Carolina, each pair of our technologically advanced socks are hand-inspected and pre-washed before reaching your feet.
How do I choose?
While cotton is rotten, there are so many stellar options to choose from! According to our informal pole, the Hidden Comforts are the most popular, capturing the soles of 37 percent of Impis. Enduros come in second at 20 percent, closely followed by Blister Resists in third.
John Paul Swearingen, who learned the importance of good socks while hiking in Oregon (“I once made the mistake of hiking in the wrong socks. Two months later, my feet were back to normal.”), turns to Hidden Comforts because they are “seriously, so freaking comfortable. It's that 'new sock feeling' every time for years and years.”
“When I am running all week, I prefer the Hidden Comfort socks to provide extra cushioning,” says Cindy. “I also have narrow feet, so thicker socks allow my feet to fit better in my shoes.
When I am hiking long miles on the Appalachian Trail I prefer the mohair Blister Resists with my hiking boots.”
“Even when my feet were wet from rivers or puddles, Enduro kept my feet and my toes secure, comfortable, and blister-free,” says Jess Kistler. “I also wore the low-cut sock, so it kept the rocks out as well, which was an added bonus.”
Janae’s favorites are also the Enduro No Show because “they work great for tris (I can put them on wet feet), zero blisters, and they stay up.”
Every sock serves a purpose, though. Robert’s go-to’s are the Ultralights: “I like a sock that is thin and comfortable. Helps me connect better to my shoe and then ground.” Spun from ultrafine hi-tech performance yarns, Ultralights boast a protection-based design that provide the sheerest, lightest performance running sock on the market.
“The Silvers are my top pick because my feet tend to sweat. A lot,” says Amanda Ghent. “So on long runs, short runs, or even when I’m wearing tennis shoes out, I get the comfort, moisture wicking, anti blister, and antimicrobial agents all working in my favor! Hands down the best!”
Unsure which sock is for you? Our personalized Find Your Fit guide has got you-- and your feet-- covered. Happy and healthy adventuring!