We all take running socks for granted. If they are bad, they are really bad. They can give you blisters or have seams that rub all the wrong places and they can make you miserable. But if they are good, you don’t even notice them enough to think about those things that make them bad. That’s what makes a sock review so hard.. you have to make a conscious effort to pay attention because when you try the good ones, you can easily forget all about them. And then what can you say when you have to write about them?
I recently got to try three different brands of socks, and each has their place in my sock drawer for different reasons. The first thing I’ll say is that all of them “disappeared” after I put them on, meaning none of them were uncomfortable or awful.
The first pair of socks I tried were the SAYSKY High Combat Socks, and after trying some of their activewear, I knew that the socks would not disappoint. As predicted, the material on these felt heavenly from the first moment my toe hit the tip. They are stretchy and soft and the sort of socks you could wear all day for regular use or, most definitely, for a workout or a run. They are a multi-functional sock in this regard, yet still a high performance running sock.
The Combat Sock is a tight fit, but not a compression sock. They aren’t hard to pull up and they breathe really well. They are thin enough to wear under a close-fitting shoe and not feel like your toes are going to be pinched or crushed. They also feel cool to the touch, which is really a plus for when your feet get hot. They have great support in the arch and a 3D heel which really helps when you put your shoes on.
These socks will hit the ankle mid-calf and the pair I tried are white with a dark green SAYSKY logo and ribbon at the top. I received a pair in size S-M, which are meant for a shoe size 4-7, but despite the fact that I’m a size 8 shoe, these socks didn’t feel too small for my feet. I guess that this proves that they are really pretty stretchy and adaptable.
Products & Price:
- High Combat Socks ($21)
- 69% polyamide / 21% polyester / 8% elastodiene / 2% elastane.
I love compression socks for long runs, but most of the ones I own currently are knee length. I was happy to try the mid-calf length for something different. They aren’t quite as warm as a full-length sock would be, which is a good thing as we head into summer and warmer runs. These will still hug the arches of the foot and the ankle for stability despite the fact that they can’t be pulled all the way up over the calves.
I’m currently training for a marathon, and with the additional miles, I’ve noticed a few more aches and pains, especially around my ankles after those 16+ mile days. These CEP compression socks are great because they provide support for that both during and after the run without getting too hot and sweaty. I gotta love the “no blister guarantee” too, and I must say I’ve never had a blister in a pair of CEP socks.
As with all compression socks, these help prevent injury and increase blood circulation. They can also aid in recovery, and help with running issues such as swelling or Plantar Fasciitis and Achilles tendon pain.
I received my pair in a size medium in black and hot pink. The familiar “Left” and “Right” labels will help ensure you know which sock goes with which foot, and also helps position the anatomical padded zones.
Products & Price:
- The Run Compression Mid Cut Socks 4.0 ($18.95)
- Material: 86% Polyamide, 14% spandex
- Compression Level:18-20 mmHg on ankle
I was late to the “toe sock” trend, but really only because the first time I tried on a pair, I was a teenager buying them from the mall because they were trendy. They were NOT Injinji socks, and I didn’t think about the fact that a pair made specifically for runners might actually work in my favor. Luckily, I decided to try a pair about a year ago, and I’ve been a convert ever since. I don’t wear toe socks for every run, but they are what I prefer on the trails and on rocky terrain in general.
Injinji separates the toes, and while there are runners out there who don’t like that when they run, I’d challenge every runner to at least TRY a pair if they haven’t. They do not irritate the feet and when you sweat between your toes, these will prevent them from rubbing together. Also when you get cold feet (ie running through a stream,) your feet will stay warmer in Injinji toes socks.
These mini-crew performance trainer socks are made for it all.. cross-training, strength, circuit, HIIT, and, of course, running. The particular socks I tried for this review are Performance Trainer socks in the Original Weight thin cushioning. The five-toe sleeve design is completely seamless. This means no friction, no blisters, and that natural and free movement that any runner wants. There’s a breathable mesh on the top and the fit is meant to support the contours of your foot. This gives you better contact with the ground.
The main thing that makes the difference in Injinji socks in comparison to many other toe socks is the material. If you have the wrong material for a style of sock like this, it can prove problematic for a running adventure. But the technical knit material of the Injinji feels great on the skin, whether you’re sweating, wet, or otherwise. I’ve personally found there to be zero blister-causing friction with these, and I’ve worn them for hours out on the trails.
With all that being said, I would advise, (as a running coach and distance runner,) that you try these out on a shorter run first if you’ve never worn toe socks. I’ve met lots of runners who don’t fair as well with ANY kind of toe sock, so that’s not to discredit Injinji. That’s true of pretty much any running-related gear you’ll ever try. However, if you find these work for you, you’re golden and there’s no turning back.
Products & Price:
- Trainer Mini-Crew Performance Trainer ($13)
- 35% Nylon, 26% COOLMAX EcoMade® Nylon, 26% COOLMAX EcoMade® Polyester, 8% Polyester, 5% Lycra
Thank you to SAYSKY, CEP, and INJINJI for providing us with a sample pack. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.