You might assume athletic crew socks are a pretty basic item — until you start to shop for them. Then, you soon realize there are hundreds of brands and styles, which makes picking the best crew socks more challenging than you imagined. So, how do you make this choice? Here are the key things to consider.
What percent cotton are the socks?
You'll find some athletic socks made from 100% cotton, others made from a blend of cotton and spandex, and still others made from cotton and another synthetic, like nylon. If you plan on using the socks just for lounging around, 100% cotton socks can be a good choice. However, if you're planning to actually be active in these socks, you'll be better off with ones that contain a significant percentage of other materials. For example, a sock that is 50% cotton and 50% spandex may be ideal. These socks will stretch more effectively as you move. They'll also be more breathable, so your feet stay dry inside your shoes.
Do the socks have arch support?
Some crew socks basically look like long tubes with a bit of a heel. Others have a more detailed shape with a true arch in the underside. If you plan on wearing the socks for true athletic activities, then you'll want to buy ones with arch support. These will help keep your feet comfortable and prevent arch strain throughout the day. The higher your arches, the more important this feature is in an athletic sock.
What color are the socks?
Color is more important than you might think. If you are prone to athlete's foot, then you may want to stick with white socks so that you can bleach them. For the average person, though, colored socks are okay as long as you remember to wash them in hot water.
How far up do the socks come?
Crew socks are meant to come up to the level just above your sneaker. If they are any taller than this, they can look silly. If they are too short, they can allow your shoes to rub. Read some reviews from people whose feet are the same size as yours to see how the socks fit them height-wise.
Choosing athletic crew socks is not always easy. When you find a style that seems like it will work, order one pair and give them a try before ordering additional ones. Check out local or online clothing stores to find a variety of athletic crew socks.