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The Best Men’s Socks For Every Occasion

Best Mens Socks 00 Hero

When we were young, we loathed the idea of receiving a boring gift like socks, but as we get older, we find ourselves looking forward to a fresh pair. Regardless of comfort or sweat-wicking features, socks are still about as mentally stimulating and exciting to talk about as the weather. But that’s not to say socks are an unnecessary element of any wardrobe.

So unless you live in a tropical paradise where no shirts or shoes still get you service, odds are you’ll be buying or gifting a pair of these necessary foot warmers in the near future. And just like the shoes in which they spend the majority of their days, there’s a myriad of brands and types that all boast an array of features for specific wear. So we hope you find our best men’s socks guide helpful in guiding your decision.

The Best Men’s Socks

Important sock considerations

Material: A cotton and synthetic blend is the ideal material makeup for casual, dress, and athletic socks, as you want something breathable. But if you want something warm and thick (ideal for hiking and winter socks), then Merino wool is the way to go.

Weight: Thick material construction is ideal for hiking, backpacking, winter, and some athletic socks. You’ll want the warmth for cold days or outdoor conditions, and the cushioning if you’re doing intense activity. Thinner material construction is best for casual and dress socks because you want something breathable and comfortable that you can wear for most of the day. Either way, make sure the socks can fit in your shoe comfortably before deciding.

Height: In ascending order (on your leg), socks most commonly come in no-show, crew, boot, mid-calf, and over-the-calf (with some variations in between). Dress socks are a bit tricky because they can come in various heights, but the mid-calf is the most popular. Crew socks are probably the safest choice because they’re versatile and rise high enough for coverage.

Price: While a solid pair of socks doesn’t have to be expensive, you’ll likely have to replace them less if you spring for a more expensive pair. Sometimes a quick pack from Target will do in a pinch, but if you want more quality and longevity from your socks, then be prepared to enter the $10 – $20+ range for a pair.

common sock variants

Athletic: Too often, both indoor and outdoor athletes misconstrue the purpose surrounding an athletic sock. It’s more than just comfort, it’s about safety and, in most cases, health. Because let’s face it, when your feet are confined in a dark and damp place for an extended period of time, the essence of biology begins to take afoot. In addition to the troubles with getting athlete’s foot, there’s also the pressure factor. Running, jumping, or lunging adds significant pressure and stress on the feet, and a great athletic sock stabilizes the foot and works to alleviate this pressure keeping you fit and agile.

Dress: While we all may not be hitting the basketball court or running track every day, odds are we’re wearing a suit or business casual clothing five days a week. And while the classic tube sock may exhume nostalgia and comfort for everyday wear, they’re highly unsightly when paired with anything else besides a pair of basketball shorts. Proper dress socks may come in a wide range of materials though more often than not, they lend themselves to darker colors, and it’s often best to match them with whatever pair of pants you’re wearing that day.

Casual: Casual socks earn the award for most mileage. They’re worn at all hours when a specifically-designed pair of socks isn’t necessary or desired. In this instance, comfort is king. Whether canvassing the bars in and around the neighborhood or lounging at home catching on Netflix, casual socks are there to keep you warm and snug. Yes, of course, there are times when flip-flops are preferable to wearing shoes, however, most of us don’t have the luxury of living in an area where year-round sandals are the norm. Luckily, casual socks don’t have to look the part. There are a ton of options out there that blend both a casual sock composition with a dress-sock appearance.

Uniqlo Colorful 50 Socks

Uniqlo Colorful 50 Socks

Best Affordable Socks: Japanese-based company Uniqlo is known for making affordable garments that are still good quality. And the Colorful 50 Socks are no exception, with 50 colors to choose from, they feature deodorizing capabilities and work well as either casual socks or office socks.

Materials: 43% cotton, 43% acrylic, 11% nylon, 2% spandex, and 15 polyester
Height: Dress

Bombas Men’s Lightweight No Show Socks

Bombas Mens Lightweight No Show Socks

Best No-Show Socks: Certain shoes and outfits require certain socks, so if you’re in need of some good no-shows, then consider these socks from Bombas. These socks have been designed to hug your ankle while still being lightweight and comfortable.

Materials: 59% cotton, 37% polyester, 3% spandex, and 1% nylon
Height: No-show

Flint and Tinder Sunwashed Quarter Crew Socks

Flint and Tinder Sunwashed Quarter Crew Socks

Best Quarter-Length Socks: Flint and Tinder are known for their simple yet durable output of quality clothing. So you can trust these crew socks that were knit in North Carolina got your back, especially since there’s adding cushioning on the sole.

Materials: 68% cotton, 16% nylon, 12% acrylic, and 4% spandex
Height: Quarter-length crew

Nike Unisex Everyday Cushion Crew 3 Pair

Nike Unisex Everyday Cushion Crew 3 Pair

Best Everyday Athletic Socks: Sometimes, you just need a quick pack of new socks to get the job done. That’s why these crew socks from Nike are a great choice if you want some simple daily drivers. They’re made with sweat-wicking fabric and a thick terry sole for better cushioning.

Materials: 69% cotton, 28% polyester, 2% spandex, and 1% nylon
Height: Crew

Lululemon Men’s MacroPillow Ankle Running Sock Medium Cushioning

Lululemon Mens MacroPillow Ankle Running Sock Medium Cushioning

Best Running Socks: Lululemon took the time to observe the impact of a runner’s foot and create a sock that provides the perfect comfort, support, and breathability. It’s made with breathable mesh and treated to keep odor-causing bacteria at bay. The MacroPillow cushioning also keeps your feet comfortable during runs.

Materials: 93% nylon, 6% elastane, and 1% polyester
Height: Low cut

Polo Ralph Lauren Crew Sock 3-Pack

Polo Ralph Lauren Crew Sock 3 Pack

Best Business Casual Socks: This three-pack of Polo socks from Ralph Lauren is made with a soft cotton blend and works with many outfits. So if you’re headed to the office or just hanging at home, these got you covered.

Materials: Cotton, nylon, and spandex
Height: Crew

L.L.Bean Adults’ Bean Boot Socks

LL Bean Adults Bean Boot Socks

Best Boot Socks: If you’re wearing some boots, then it’s important to get some socks that are made for that. L.L.Bean’s boot socks are a great choice as they’re made with a Merino wool blend that will keep you warm while also wicking moisture and fighting odor.

Materials: 78% Merino wool, 15% nylon, and 6% polyester with 1% Lycra spandex
Height: Crew

Darn Tough Men’s Hiker Micro Crew Midweight Hiking Sock

Darn Tough Mens Hiker Micro Crew Midweight Hiking Sock

Best Hiking Socks: Trusted by backpackers and hikers around the country, these hiking socks from Darn Tough are the perfect outdoor companion. These socks are made with a warm Merino wool blend and have extra cushioning on the heel and foot for lasting comfort. Additionally, the height and weight of these socks allow them to fit well with either hiking shoes or boots.

Materials: 61% Merino Wool, 36% nylon, and 3% Lycra spandex
Height: Micro crew

American Trench Supermerino Socks

American Trench Supermerino Socks

Best American-Made Socks: These Merino wool socks are made proudly right here in the States in North Carolina. They’ve been designed to be breathable yet warm, thanks to the woolen spun construction, and even have some padding on the foot for added comfort and support.

Materials: 77% Merino wool, 14% nylon, 7% polyester, and 2% spandex
Height: Crew

ROTOTO Old School Crew Sock

ROTOTO Old School Crew Sock

Best Retro Socks: RoToTo takes pride in using classic techniques and trusted processes to create quality clothing. And these ’70s-inspired socks are made with the same design principles. These socks have been knitted and made on vintage machines to achieve a retro tube sock look and feel.

Materials: 73% cotton, 12% acrylic, 12% polyester, and 3% polyurethane
Height: Crew

Arvin Goods Terry House Sock

Arvin Goods Terry House Sock

Best Japanese Socks: These Japanese-made socks from Arvin Goods are made in a family-owned and operated factory with over a century of sock-making experience. They’re super comfortable and great for the house, but have no problem accompanying you out into the world, either.

Materials: 36% upcycled cotton, 43% recycled polyester, 19% polyamide, and 2% elastane
Height: Crew

Everlane The Organic Cotton Ribbed Crew Sock 3-Pack

Everlane The Organic Cotton Ribbed Crew Sock 3 Pack

Best Organic Socks: Everlane is known for crafting sustainable clothing with the utmost transparency. That means you can trust that these organic crew socks are made with the right stuff and designed to last. Additionally, extra cushioning has been added to the foot for more comfort.

Materials: 80% organic cotton, 19% recycled polyester, and 1% elastane
Height: Crew

Nice Laundry Personal Edition Socks

Nice Laundry Personal Edition Socks

Best Dress Socks: For our final pick, we have these dress socks from Nice Laundry. You can even get one of the socks monogrammed if you buy a pair, which makes for a great gift and a personal addition to your wardrobe.

Materials: Not listed
Height: Dress

The Best Pocket T-Shirts for your Wardrobe Essentials

Best Pocket T Shirts 00 Hero
Photo: Taylor Stitch The Heavy Bag Tee

A great pocket tee is just as essential as a pair of socks. That’s why you should check out our best pocket t-shirts guide.