Top 10 Best Running Socks Tested

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Searching for Running socks? Take a look at the best socks of 2017, check out their Pros & Cons and know what to be aware of before buying them online or in a store.

When it comes to running, you have to consider many details and knowing what they are can really bring up your game. Socks really matter for the overall protection of your feet, and not just fancy compression socks. Whatever you’re putting on your feet before you stick them in your trainers is going to have a big impact on your comfort levels. There´s just no need to cross the finish line with bruised feet, check out our top picks.

Why Does Good Running Socks Matter?

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Our Top 3 Picks
CEP Dynamic+
  • CEP Dynamic+
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Plantar Fasciitis support
  • Price: See Here
Balega Hidden Comfort
  • Balega Hidden Comfort
  • 4.8 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Seamless toe closure
  • Price: See Here
Stance Line Up Tab
  • Stance Line Up Tab
  • 4.8 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Reduces sore feet
  • Price: See Here

10 Best Running Socks

 

1. CEP Dynamic+

Rounding out our list is a truly top of the line sock from CEP. These are a shortened compression sock that are great for people with foot/ankle issues. They are form fitting, help fight plantar fasciitis and generally improve blood flow. A great sock to add just that tiny extra percentage to your performance.
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Comfort/Stability
Their ankle compression system improves circulation providing the best comfort.They have extra padding in the heel that has been medically tested.

Durability/Quality
Socks are made up of synthetic materials that are odor resistant plus moist absorbing.

Cost/Value
Their cost is affordable but a bit higher than the rest of the products on this list.

Conclusion
These socks will do just fine if you want that extra cushioning and support in your ankles and heel. It can also be used in cold weather.
Pros
  • Gender specific
  • Great arch support, formatted
  • Good ankle support
  • Mesh, moisture fighting material
  • Form fitting, contours well
Cons
  • Hard to size just right

2. Balega Hidden Comfort

Forget about sweat and moisture with this synthetic mesh, which is available in various colors. These socks have special elastane designed to fit perfectly and stay there. Placing your feet in one of these socks comes very close to walking over clouds.
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Forget about sweat and moisture with this synthetic mesh, which is available in various colors. These socks have special elastane designed to fit perfectly and stay there. Placing your feet in one of these socks comes very close to walking over clouds. Thanks to sock’s elastaine construction and its plush under sole, the Hidden Comfort is key in this product for giving an overall excellent experience to users, plus the synthetic quick wicking drynamix material will absolutely keep those moist areas dry. It´s also very worth noting that Balega is not only about clothing and accessories, they also have a serious commitment to social responsibility. The company helps and works with children from KwaZulu Natal, South Africa,that are physically disabled and visually impaired. You will feel good, look good and will be helping a worthy cause.

Comfort/ Stability
The name says it all "Hidden comfort". The word hidden relates to the no-show design, because this is more of a blatant comfort.

Durability/ Quality
These socks last a lifetime. After several washes, the material will still look as good as new. Feedback from our users back up these claims.

Cost/ Value
The socks have an average cost, but an enormous value

Conclusion
If you´re looking for a mixture of low cost and high value, this is your choice.
Pros
  • Warm and extremely comfortable
  • Guaranteed for life
  • Optimum airflow 
  • Highly durable
  • Reasonably priced
Cons
  • Probably not ideal for trail running

3. Stance Line Up Tab

This is one of the so called designated footed socks in which the right and left sock are designed for their respective foot for more comfort. Its heel protection and breathability make it perfect for hard runs.
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This brand is well known for making NBA themed products. The run collection is simply off the hook, stellar, classy and one of the best out there. They are elegant and practical.

Comfort/Stability
These socks were designed for your comfort and having a specific sock for your right or left foot will really make the difference.

Durability/Quality
Materials here are made to last and we found that the mesh is really breathable. There is also a tiny bit of arch support for those runners who tend to pronate a bit. Another nice touch is the reinforced heel and toe area that helps to prevent blisters.

Cost/ Value
The cost is slightly higher than other versions but still well within the average. The cost is well worth the value.

Conclusion
This is a great choice if you´re looking for a formidable price, and high quality.
Pros
  • Thick, plenty of padding
  • Clinically tested padding in the heel
  • Durable, high quality
  • Proven reduction in sore feet
Cons
  • Probably not ideal for colder weather

4. Nike Elite No-Show Tab

4.  Nike Elite No-Show Tab
Looking to add a little bounce to your step? The Nike Elites are a great way to do this. Coming in a variety of energetic colors these socks have plush cushioning, and a no show cut, and keep your feet nice and dry. Can’t go wrong here.
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Comfort/Stability
These socks have extra padding in all the feet´s key places that offer outstanding comfort and stability.

Durability/Quality
They are made up mostly of synthetic materials for extra moisture absorption.

Cost/Value
Their cost is within the average range, nevertheless, they are a bit more expensive than other options here.

Conclusion
These socks have all the qualities a runner is looking for and only by glancing at it once you know that great thought has been put into their design.
Pros
  • They deal well with moisture
  • Seamless cushioning underneath
  • Reasonable pricing
  • Anti-blister material
  • Reflective swoosh on the heel for visibility
Cons
  • Not the cheapest option

5. Feetures!

5. Feetures!
Everyone likes a clever name, and the good news is there is far more to like about these socks than wordplay. These socks have many runner friendly traits such as: ventilating fabric panels to wick moisture, seam-free toes, an anatomically correct foot design, extra heel cushioning, and arch support. These socks are a home run!
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Comfort/ Stability
The extra heel cushioning and arch support make this a pretty comfortable and stable set of socks.

Durability/ Quality
The materials such as polyester and spandex make this a strong set of socks.

Cost/Value
The socks come at a reasonable, average price. They offer great value since they are specifically designed for your comfort and needs while running.

Conclusion
The Feeture socks definitely come with many features that will blow your mind and keep your feet dry, protected and ready to take on the road.
Pros
  • Solid arch support
  • an anatomically correct foot design
  • Ventilating panels
  • Good cushioning system
  • Specified foot design
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Sizing is tough

6. Puma Runner Socks

6. Puma Runner Socks
A thin and sleek sock from Puma that will look after your feet in the best way possible. Great with odor control and high temperatures, these socks perform best in summertime. Throw in a snazzy design and assorted color options, and you’ve got yourself a great deal.
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Comfort/Stability
These socks are thin and soft and will prevent the formation of blisters.

Durability/Quality
They are made out of quality materials and they resist multiple washes.

Cost/Value
They have an affordable price.

Conclusion
Definitely give these a try if you want a good price and also good quality.
Pros
  • Lightweight, breathable
  • Very reasonably priced
  • Low cut stylish look
  • A lot of color options
Cons
  • The pricier products may last longer than these

7. Nike Dri-Fit Cotton Lightweight

7. Nike Dri-Fit Cotton Lightweight
As is pretty much always the case sticking with a Dri-Fit option from Nike is not only a safe choice but an excellent one as well. With these socks you will get an excellent bang for your buck. Dependable, moisture controlling and comfortable — everything you need is there.
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Comfort/Stability
The cushioning, moisture control and soft material will feel comfortable to your feet.

Durability/ Quality
They are made up of cotton and polyester and designed to last for a long time.

Cost/Value
The cost is within average and the quality and general value of the socks is great.

Conclusion
If you´re one of those who thinks the most known brand can usually be reliable, in this case you´re more than right.
Pros
  • Affordable
  • Dri-fit technology is proven to be quite effective
  • No show cut, leaves ankles bare
  • Thin but supportive
Cons
  • Generic sizing

8. Drymax Run Hyper Thin

8. Drymax Run Hyper Thin
This sock is ranks well against any competitive-high performance sock out there. It’s extremely thin and lightweight, you’ll feel barefoot with it on. The Run Hyper also breathable mesh to keep air moving, a thoughtful left-right anatomic fit, and an anti-blister system. All in all they are primed to keep your feet comfortable.
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Comfort/Stability
For your general comfort while running these socks are some of the best you will find since their absorbable materiales and anti- blister system are some of the most effective out there.

Durability/Quality
These socks are made up of synthetic materials that are long lasting and give an awesome, sporty look.

Cost/Value
They come at an above average price but they are very useful. They serve their purpose greatly.

Conclusion
You may have not heard of this brand, but seasoned runners and athletes, after trying these socks could eventually not get enough of them.
Pros
  • Designed to be “the World’s Lightest Running Sock”
  • Incredibly durable material
  • Controls moisture and odors well
  • Pleasing minimalist design
Cons
  • These will cost you a bit more

9. Saucony 6 Pack Performance

9. Saucony 6 Pack Performance
Another trusted name in the runner’s world, Saucony has created a pair of socks for women that do exactly what you need to do. Keep you dry, protected and comfortable. Coming in a 6 pack, these socks are a steal for the price!
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Comfort/Stability
Its arch cushioning, breathable air mesh, and moisture management system make this very comfortable socks.

Durability/Quality
This is top notch technology and quality that is designed to last.

Cost/Value
Since it is a six pack, the cost per pair of socks is lower than many others in this list.

Conclusion
The different colors in these socks are lively and young. Once you put one of these on your foot you will know why they are well worth your money and time.
Pros
  • Comfortable and supportive
  • Air mesh venting, keeps you nice and cool
  • Extra cushioned sole
  • Durable
Cons
  • Not available in single pairs

10. ASICS Cushion Low Cut Socks Unisex

10. ASICS Cushion Low Cut Socks Unisex
A highly respected name in the running market, ASICS Unisex Cushion Low Cut will serve the athletic purpose it sets and beyond. The list of positives about these socks could be quite long, but the real standout feature in this sock is the special “NanoGLIDE” knitting in the toe and heel areas which serves to smooth contact/friction and keep things dry.
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Comfort/Stability
The unique “NanoGLIDE” knitting in the toe and heel helps smooth friction for the prevention of blisters.

Durability/Quality
They are made of resistant polyester, spandex and nylon, which makes for a durable product.

Cost/Value
These socks have a low cost but their multiple qualities are rich.

Conclusion
It´s materials, feel, and the protection these socks provide are outstanding. They also have a reasonable price.
Pros
  • Excellent cushioning
  • Designed for a perfect fit
  • Strong arch support
  • Sweat wicking, keeps you dry
Cons
  • They usually only come in three colors.

 

There are several things you need to consider before buying a pair of running socks, some of those details anti blister technology, whether or not they are made up of special materials, with special cushioning for less impact, have individual toes, or are designed for a specific foot (left or right). There is nothing worse than socks that are too tight or slide around on your feet if they’re too big. You also don’t want to be running in thick calf length socks in August, or to end up with ankle socks that leave your heel too exposed to abrasions.


The Criteria We Used For Our Evaluation Of The Best Running Socks

A good pair of socks can really make the difference between a blissful run and painful blisters. A good combination of great shoes and socks can make your run smoother.

Technology invested in running gear is constantly increasing, socks have experienced dramatic improvements in the way they are manufactured (materials) and designed. The benefits you can get from them in very specific circumstances have also had amazing advances. In the end it will obviously be you who will decide how much time, energy and money you want to spend on buying socks, depending on how serious you are about running. Nevertheless, we hope this guide is helpful at saving you some time and maybe even a couple of bucks, when it´s time for making that purchasing decision.

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Here are some suggestions to look at that can make you decision easier:

Synthetic Materials 

Make sure your socks don’t get wet and even more, make sure they don’t stay wet. That’s why 100% cotton socks are not your best choice when looking for running socks, they can cause blisters in the summer and make your feet feel cold in the winter. You need socks that wick the moisture away.

Polyester and acrylic are the most popular materials you find when looking for running socks, those materials are used by most of the manufacturers because they wick away moisture. Always choose socks that provide good breathability.

Mind the season

Running during summer is very different than doing it during winter. We recommend you buy socks to use in the summer and some others to use during winter. It may sound obvious to keep the season in mind, but if you don’t pay attention to it, you can end up with blisters that can have you taking some time off from running.

top-10-running-socks-water

For winter we recommend to use wool blends or double-layer socks. Thicker socks provide additional cushioning regardless the season you’re in. They are also great, specially if you do off-track runs. For summer times, we recommend lighter socks with a lot of breathability. If you don’t want to spend a lot of money and time looking for the best seasonal socks, there are also some options that work well for every season.

Usage

Depending on how long your runs are, you can choose from different specialized materials and styles of socks. There are people that use the running socks during the day so when work is over and its time to run, they don’t have to change. The odor factor plays a major role if you use your socks for the entire day. If you want to use your new running socks for longer than your run, make sure you get a pair made of anti-odor fabric.

Style

Socks come in different shapes, colors, lengths and motifs. One important thing to have in mind if you prefer no-show socks, is to buy some with a band that goes above your running shoe and over your heel. This way your shoe does not create friction directly with your skin and irritate it, or even create a blister.

Preventing blisters  should always go on top of the list when you are trying to buy socks. We recommend you choose a non stylish pair of socks that will keep you away from blisters rather than a very stylish pair of socks that will make you regret that lovely run you planned. You can also get both features, that´s what we’re here for.

Size

Most brands manufacture unisex socks and they are sized up to your running shoes. So you don’t need to worry that much about sizing. We can also give you some tips for whenever you´re buying the perfect shoes and want them to match your socks or vice versa. Make sure you try on shoes with the socks you’re going to be running in because some shoes will require you to buy socks that are higher in your calf.

top-10-running-socks-size

If you take your running very seriously and want to find the best socks for you, make sure to find socks that are designed specifically for your left and right feet, those can definitely provide the best performance.

Other important factors to consider when buying running socks

Anti-blister technology

Blisters will affect your running performance and can be extremely painful. If you get blisters easily, we recommend you use two-layer system socks that will definitely prevent blister formation.

top-10-running-socks-blisters

Individual toes

Many runners claim that individual toes socks give them a better range of motion and can enhance their performance. It also protects your toes and feet from the heat and moisture produced during training. You´ll have to try them yourself to find out.

top-10-running-socks-toes

Padding

Padded socks keep your feet protected from impacts when you run. If you want to feel the ground you are running on, then we recommend you don´t use light padded socks. Padding is very recommended for .

top-10-running-socks-padding

Ankle support

Some socks provide extra ankle support by making the elastic material on the ankle area thicker. You may also want to try additional ankle support underneath your socks.

top-10-running-socks-heelArch support

Same technology used for ankle support is also used for arch support. Elastic material thicker on your arches will provide that extra support you may need when running.

top-10-running-socks-arch

Dedicated footed socks

Some serious runners have said that dedicated footed socks can bring the best performance in their runs. They certainly provide an optimum fit you can’t get with other socks, since they adapt to your left and your right foot specifically. Getting some of those only depend on how serious is our run.

top-10-running-socks-dedicated-foot

Ventilating Mesh 

Using materials that allow the evaporation of sweat is key here. The incorporation of mesh uppers can allow better ventilation to your feet.

top-10-running-socks-ventilation

Achilles Heel padding 

It reduces friction that causes chafing and blisters in the heel area. Since the heel was a semi god´s weakest part of the body, be warned, the Greeks were probably on to something.top-10-running-socks-ankle

FAQ

In order to offer as much help as possible, we have collected some frequently asked questions that may even spark a few other good questions of your own. Feel free to contact us if you have any, or just leave them in the space designated for comments.

Q: Are there different levels of cushioning in  socks?

A: The levels of cushioning range from ultra light to max cushioning.  Ultra light cushioned socks are great for keeping feet cool in warm weather.  Max cushioning socks do exactly that – provide a maximum amount of cushioning underfoot.  However, this type of cushioning can be too warm if used in warm weather.

Q: Will compression socks increase my running performance more than regular socks?

A:  Compression socks might not be for everyone, so results tend to be based on the individual.  However, many runners feel that they recover faster when using compression socks.  They also might help runners who suffer pain or soreness in their calves.

Q: I use therapeutic socks, can I find therapeutic running socks?

A: Yes, you can. Brands like Feetures! offer a line of socks that incorporates technology that will make your feet run as comfortable as they can. High density cushioning, extra support in the arch, extra ventilation and a non-binding top are some of the features you can find. Now nothing will stop you from running!

Q: Does the quality of running socks that important?

A: Absolutely. Investing in quality socks for running is very important, because lower quality socks or socks made of the wrong material may not provide enough breathability and/or can cause blisters and other irritations on the foot.  A good, high quality sock will help prevent blisters, wick moisture and perhaps provide additional support that you may need.

top-10-running-socks-final-run

We really hope you find the information in this guide useful to your search. We also hope you learn how socks work , and the way they can be convenient for you. Finding the right pair of socks is just as important of a process as getting the right kind of trainers; both, combined, can be the most powerful combo you need to take your runs to the next level.


The following are sources we used while conducting our research:

In order to provide the best information, we utilized the following sources.  Sources vary from clinical to manufactures or other specialized sites that had relative information to this particular topic.

Sources

  1. Very Well, How to Prevent and Treat Foot Blisters When Running , Online Health Publication, Feb 02, 2016
  2. Runner's Need, The Ultimate Summer Running Gear Guide, Running Gear Website,
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