What socks should you wear with walking boots?

Often, we blame the shoes for foot pains, not knowing that getting the wrong sock can cause a lot of foot conditions, including soreness and blisters. Wearing the appropriate sock can help prevent these foot conditions.

With vast kinds of socks available everywhere, it is so difficult choosing the right one for a specific purpose. Walking is an activity that we do almost every day, but what are the appropriate socks to wear with walking boots? Let us find out! It is something you need to know before you face difficulties in starting.

It would be best to understand that socks have different lengths and come from other materials. The type of walking boots determines the right sock length. Your sock length should be slightly above your chosen footwear. The tricky part with the size of socks is that if you select short socks, the walking boot will rub your ankle. If the socks are too long, your feet will likely be too warm, causing the hose to slip down. So choosing the correct length is the way to go.

Socks come from different materials, including cotton, wool, merino wool, synthetic, and others. Some have a mixture of different materials. I love wool or merino socks, and I would recommend them as the best. However, they are other sock materials; let’s see how other materials behave and the benefits they have:

  • Cotton

Though you can find some socks made of cotton fabric, it is not a recommended material on its own. Cotton is good when mixed with other materials to balance out its weaknesses. Cotton isn’t the best material for socks on its own because of its poor moisture management, which may cause chafing and blistering. You hardly find walking brands with socks made of cotton only; instead, they are now mixing it with other materials to form a great type of sock.

  • Wool

Wool is an ideal material that quickly wicks moisture with fantastic insulation properties. It is naturally odor-resistant and a pervasive fabric used primarily in cold weather walking socks because it’s warmer. However, wool on its own isn’t enough because it has less elasticity. It is usually mixed with an elastic material to balance this weakness.

  • Merino wool

Merino wool is the best material for socks because of its ability to wick moisture away. It is a fine wool that is best at managing moisture and is the primary material many brands recommend.

  • Synthetic

Synthetic fabrics used to develop socks are waterproof and durable. Manufactured materials are mixed with natural materials to form the best fabrics that outweigh many weaknesses.

A lot of socks have a mixture of materials to balance any negatives. 

As I mentioned earlier, I advise you to choose merino wool socks above all the materials.  Remember to get the right length. Don’t forget the weight, including lightweight, midweight, and heavyweight socks.

Lightweight is best in warmer weather to keep your feet cool. Midweight socks are balanced, suitable for both warmer and cold conditions. Heavyweight socks have a lot of cushioning, which is appropriate for icy weather conditions.

Types of Hiking Socks

Hiking socks have different heights besides being lightweight, midweight, or heavyweight. Choosing the appropriate size depends on the type of hiking boot you have. It would be best if you constantly desired a height that is slightly above the cuffs of your shoes. 

Hiking socks come in four different types

  • No-show

These are very short socks necessary for short trail running activities. They do not provide as much skin-to-boot abrasion protection, and you can wear them with low-cut footwear or light hiking shoes.

  • Ankle

These are also short socks but slightly above the no-show socks. They are also best worn with low to mid-cut boots. They can cover the ankle bone for little protection.

  • Crew

The crew type is the classic height found on many hiking socks. They are slightly a few inches above the ankle bone. With crew socks, you’re guaranteed protection against abrasion from boots that have high cuffs. You can also wear them with low-cut boots but remember the extra coverage can cause extra warmth, especially in hot weather conditions.

  • Knee-high

Knee-high socks are not standard. They are best for mountaineering activities. They are usually worn with those big burly boots to protect your calves and shins against abrasion. Wear them in cold conditions or at night, and your lower legs are kept warm.

What causes blisters?

If you are bothered by blisters when you hike, you have to know why. The leading causes of blisters are moisture and heat that lead to friction. When the skin of the feet continues to rub against the shoes or wet sock, inflammation and irritation occur. You can start to feel pain and swelling and a red sore that usually develops before the blister.

Wearing oversized socks also leads to blister formation. If the socks are too big, they may develop wrinkles that can rub against your skin and cause a blister. Wear the correct sock size for your feet.

Other causes of blisters are,

  • Wet feet from river hiking or rain
  • Poor-fitting socks
  • Too much sweat

The solution to avoiding blister formation is wearing the right socks. They regulate temperature and wick moisture away to prevent friction. The right socks will provide warmth when feet are cold and add a cooling temperature in scorching conditions. In this case, wool socks have this kind of ability.

  • Impact of Socks on blisters

Socks have a more significant impact on the formation of a blister. You should never forget that you won’t have to worry about blister formation if you choose the right socks for the suitable activity. Choosing the wrong ones usually leads to blister formation. For example

If you choose cotton socks for a hike, chances are high that you will develop blisters. Cotton has poor moisture-wicking abilities. It is hydro folic, meaning it absorbs a lot of moisture and has poor hydrophobic capabilities meaning it doesn’t quickly repel water. There will be high friction against the skin and the boots when this happens, leading to blisters.

Cotton is best when mixed with other materials to balance the weakness. Most socks come from merino wool, which is common in most brands. Merino wool makes the best type of socks because of its ability to wick moisture away.

  • How should socks fit?

No one wants to feel uncomfortable when traveling. Choosing the right size for your feet will help you enjoy your trip. If you wear an oversized sock, wrinkles can occur that will rub against your skin leading to a blister. Wearing too small can create sock slippage and pressure points.

  • Cushioning

Proper cushioning prevents blisters. If you wear a sock with poor cushioning, your feet will rub against the shoe, causing friction that will cause blisters. Getting the right socks with a lot of cushioning, particularly on the ankles and toes, will add comfort. 

Can you wear regular socks with walking boots?

Socks are necessary when wearing walking boots. You can always wear regular socks with hiking boots, provided they do not have a seam on the toe and have moisture-wicking qualities. You can try moisture-wicking polyester or wool walking socks. Check for the thickness of the socks and make sure they fit into the type of footwear you have.

Can you wear regular socks with hiking shoes?

You cannot just pick any socks for a hike. Hiking is an activity that requires a proper kit, especially socks—the Sock-to-boot combination matters. It would be best if you had hiking socks for hiking shoes because hiking socks have the right cushioning that offers impact protection. Moreover, they have mesh venting. It allows heat to escape, and elastic which secures the hose around the foot to maintain the shape and prevent friction.

How many pairs of socks should you wear with walking boots?

You can always wear two pairs of socks if you want, but that depends on the type of socks. Sometimes it is better to wear two socks to get extra warmth, especially when it’s cold and prevent blisters. Some people wear two pairs of socks when their shoes do not fit properly to get that long, snug fit.

One important thing you should note when wearing two pairs of socks is that the first layer should be a pair of light socks that fit snugly. I recommend a nylon, polyester, or wool sock liner as your first layer. Stay away from cotton socks.

Choose wool socks as your second layer for best results. Also, stay away from cotton socks.

What socks are best for boots?

Determining the socks best for your boots tend to be a mammoth task but not if you decide to consult this article. You can wear socks that are apt and appropriate for your boots. If you’re considering some aspects: the socks’ height, sock’s material, and the purpose of wearing the shoes.

If you’re planning to ski with your company, length socks that cover your calves and shin are necessary. Indirectly, they also shield you from any frictions that may occur on your ankles.

The material is quintessential in determining the best socks for your boots. Merino socks provide an excellent choice typically as these socks are good at eliminating the foul smell, blisters, and temperature regulation. Lastly, wearing boots goes a long way in determining the best socks accordingly.

For instance, once you know that you are suiting for an adventurous camp-hiking lasting for days. Then obviously, medium weight and heavyweight socks should be timely and necessary. You will need socks that will give you a considerable amount of comfort and are capable of lasting long hours. They should maintain incredible, dry, and moisture-free feet.

What is the best type of walking socks?

The best walking socks should be lightweight, breathable, comfortable, and provide warmth. It should come from the suitable material, proper thickness, and length. The following are some of the best walking socks you can find:

  • Sealskinz all-weather socks

These socks are waterproof and breathable. They provide moisture control because they come from wool with a hydrophilic waterproof membrane. There’s more cushioning to support the foot with anti-blister qualities.

You can buy Sealskinz on Amazon

  • Thorlos Unisex walking crew

These socks wick moisture efficiently and reduce blisters. They provide all the necessary comfort, including protection and lightweight.

You can get them on amazon

Should you wear socks with walking shoes?

Of course, why not wear socks when you intend to walk while putting on shoes! Bear in mind that there are different types of socks made of various materials you may wear as you take up your walking shoes. Socks are necessary to prevent blisters, regulate temperatures, and reduce foul smell/odor. They give comfort and protection to your skin.

It would be best to consider that some walking shoes are heavy and designed with a waterproofing material. They reduce their breathability capacity. In this case, the correct type of shoes will play a critical role in absorbing moisture inside your shoes. It is crucial to wear socks in walking shoes.

Hi there. This is Clare. Dave and I manage this site. We are outdoor enthusiasts. Most of the content is about products that we love using or have researched.
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