Are running socks worth it?

Running is a complex movement that requires a lot of muscles working together, but arguably the most important body part in all of this is your feet. This is why it’s so important to go to a running store and get fitted for the best shoes. Properly fitting shoes will help your gait stay on track and reduce injury, as well as reduce the likelihood that you will lose toenails from a too-tight toebox.

Getting decent socks will keep your feet dry and stop them from sliding around in your shoes, decreasing your chance of blisters or your foot being in the wrong place in your shoe. Here are a few things you should look for when trying to find a good pair of socks:

  1. Not cotton. Some people prefer wool socks (they dry quickly, are breathable, and don’t retain odor) while others prefer polyester and nylon technical socks. No matter what kind you get, the important thing is to steer clear of cotton. Cotton retains moisture and takes forever to dry, which means you have a high chance of getting blisters.
  1. Arch Support. Many running socks are tighter around the middle of your foot and your arch. This gives you a little extra support, but also helps keep your sock in place.
  1. Cushion. Some socks have lots of cushion where “hot spots” frequently occur, while others are thinner throughout. In this case, it depends on what you want and how you like your socks to fit. If you prefer thicker socks, be sure to wear them when you try on running shoes to make sure you have enough room.
  1. Seams. Good running socks will have either very small or non-existent seams, which means even less material to rub on your foot and cause blisters.
  1. Fit. Some people like socks that you can barely see in your shoe, while others look for compression socks up to their knees. Running socks come in every size and shape, so you’ll have plenty to choose from.