While socks are often simply an afterthought to an outfit, or at best seen as an extension of accessories, they do provide a valuable function in protecting your feet. Whether it be with a pair of leather brogues, sneakers or snow boots, socks form an important barrier. They cushion the friction between the shoe and your skin and they should also absorb moisture, preventing odour-producing bacteria from building in your footwear, and those made from Merino wool are an investment in both comfort and style.
Merino wool is a powerhouse fabric that offers an array of benefits. Exceptionally soft, it is the ultimate luxury but is still highly resilient. Where cotton socks can wear out easily, socks made from Merino wool have a longer lifespan as the fibres have an innate elasticity. Being super soft, they won’t irritate your feet either.
Merino wool’s natural breathability means that your feet are less prone to overheating. Heat escapes through your feet, and synthetic socks prevent this from occurring, causing that sensation of your feet swelling and shoes to becoming too tight. It also has natural properties, along with moisture transference, that prevents odours.
Thicker knitted socks made in Merino wool will help insulate your feet against the cold, even when wearing them in the snow. This is because Merino wool creates an air pocket against your skin holding in essential warmth. They are also odour resistant, making them perfect for activities such as hiking. For teaming with a suit, ultrafine lightweight styles of Merino wool will still help keep your feet warm but are also perfectly comfortable for narrower fitting shoes such as brogues or loafers.
A little known fact about socks made from other fabrics is that most manufacturers don’t recommend machine-washing them. Because they have a natural elasticity, Merino wool socks don’t require synthetic materials to retain their shape, making most Merino wool perfectly safe to be put through a standard machine wash without fear of losing shape or damaging them. Read more about how to wash wool in our easy-to-follow guide.
[Photo top] Credit: Elena Leonova