There are 29 different types of socks, each suitable for different shoe types and occasions. This guide helps you to understand the differences between socks and how you can select the right socks for every occasion.

Types of Socks from Length

Types Of Socks
Types of Socks

1. Half Socks

Half Socks
Half Socks

Half socks are the shortest socks, unless you count high heels. The socks are only designed to cover the toes and usually come halfway up the foot. This leaves the ankle free. These socks are also called toesocks and they’re perfect for shoes with an open back. Think sandals or clogs where the toes are closed but the ankles have a strap or no strap. They are great for protecting your toes against blisters and rubbing while keeping the entire sock hidden.

  • Best Worn with: Mules or Clogs

2. No-Show Socks

No-Show Socks
No-Show Socks

No-show socks, like half-socks are meant to be worn but not visible. These socks are available for both men’s and women’s shoes. They sit low and cover the toes, heel and sole of the shoe, but remain invisible behind the footwear. These socks are perfect for both dress and casual shoes. They protect the feet from rubbing and keep them dry.

  • Best Worn with: Low-Cut Dress Shoes and Sneakers

3. Ankle Socks

Ankle Socks
Ankle Socks

The next is anklet socks. They are designed to go with low-cut shoes such as sneakers or ankle booties. These socks are a bit more casual, since you can see them. These socks are perfect for when you want to show off your socks but don’t need something too bulky. These socks are designed to cover the ankle but sit low on the feet.

  • Best Worn with: Higher coverage Sneakers or Ankle boots

4. Quarter-Length Socks

Quarter-Length Socks
Quarter-Length Socks

Quarter-length socks are generally a little higher than ankle socks. The extra length helps them to stay in place and protects the heel against blisters and rubbing. They are often used for Performance socks or use cases like running or sports. These are also casual socks, but depending on the material they can be worn with dress shoes.

  • Best Worn with:Athletic shoes

5. Crew socks

Crew Socks
Crew socks

Crew socks reach the mid-calf area, roughly halfway between the ankles and knees. They are perfect for high-top sneakers or hiking boots, which have a higher heel. The protection should also be higher. They are a great choice for people who want to wear a pair of socks during the winter months, since they provide a balance between protection and flexibility.

  • Best Worn with:Boots and High Top Sneakers

6. Mid-Calf Socks

Mid-Calf Socks
Mid-Calf Socks

As the name implies, mid-calf socks are worn about halfway up the leg. They’re a little higher than crewsocks but not as high as full-calf socks. They are usually made of thick or woolen materials to keep feet and legs warm or of sheer or net fabrics to make a fashion statement.

  • Best Worn with:Boots and Dress Shoes

7. Calf Socks

Calf Socks
Calf Socks

These socks cover the entire calf and end just below the knee. Athletes love these socks because they protect the majority of the lower leg while still allowing the knee to bend and move freely. These socks are a great choice for anyone who loves to run, play sports or engage in any other high-intensity activities.

  • Best Worn with:Running or sports shoes

8. Knee-High Socks

Knee-High Socks
Knee-High Socks

This type of sock covers the entire calf. Knee-high socks can be found in industries that require socks as part of their uniform, such as flight attendants. These socks are popular for adding warmth to your outfits in colder months. They protect the feet and ankles from blisters or rubbing, while also providing more insulation against the weather.

  • Best Worn with: Boots and Dress Shoes

9. Thigh-High socks

Thigh-High Socks
Thigh-High socks

The socks are usually cuffed at the mid-thigh and have a garter or thick elastic band that helps keep them in place and stops them from slipping or rolling. These socks are often worn with skirts and kilts for extra protection against the elements. Thigh-high socks can be worn as a fashion accessory by many women. They come in a variety of colors and patterns that add a pop to any outfit. These socks are worn with either boots or shoes and look great with both.

  • Best Worn with: Boots and Dress Shoes

Types of Socks from Usefulness

There are other ways than classifying your socks by their length to organize them. You may also find other types of sock, and how you can incorporate them into your wardrobe.

These socks are tight around the foot and leg, which stimulates blood flow to reduce swelling. These are often used during long flights, and for those who will be seated for a prolonged period of time. They come in a variety of lengths, ranging from ankle socks to knee-highs depending on how much compression and coverage you need.

10. Slipper Socks

Slipper Socks
Slipper Socks

These socks can be worn inside without shoes. These socks have a grippy sole that makes it easier to walk on wood or tile floors. These are perfect for winter months when you need warmth and protection without having to wear a full-sized slipper.

11. Tube socks

Tube Socks
Tube socks

These are a variation on the calfsock. They cover the entire calf, and then end at the knee. This style of sock is different from most others in that it doesn’t feature a heel. Instead, the tube shape is what gives this style its name. These socks are usually made of cotton or polyester and feature a reinforced toe. They’re great for sports and some people prefer them over traditional calf socks because they feel more comfortable.

12. Dress socks

Dress Socks
Dress socks

Dress sock are typically calf length and made of finer materials. They are specifically designed to be worn under dress shoes. They protect the foot and ankle while not adding bulk or standingout.

13. Split-toe socks

Split-Toe Socks
Split-toe socks

These traditional Japanese socks are also called Tabi socks. They’re designed to match the traditional Japanese shoe styles. These socks can be worn with flip-flops or slip-on sandals.

14. Leg Warmer Socks

Leg Warmer Socks
Leg Warmer Socks

These socks, which are knee-length, are made from heavier materials like wool to provide warmth. These socks can be worn with heavier boots, or on their own when indoors.

15. Boot socks

Boot Socks
Boot socks

Boot socks, designed to line fall and winter boots, are ideal for cold weather. The socks are usually thicker to prevent rubbing of the feet and insulate the cold.

Types of Socks by Weight

Weight is arguably the most important way to categorize socks. The weight of a sock does not refer to the numbers on a weighing scale, but rather the relative thickness and warmth of the yarn that was used to knit the sock. The thicker the yarn, the warmer it will be.

Socks are classified into four different weight categories:

16. Ultralight Socks

Ultralight Socks
Ultralight Socks

Ultralight socks is the lightest and thinnest sock available. They are a ghost sock. These socks are the lightest and thinnest because of their thinner fabric. They are great for runners or those who work out. But they also work well for anyone looking for a thin, lightweight sock.

17. Lightweight Socks

Lightweight Socks
Lightweight Socks

Next, we have Lightweight socks. These lightweight socks can be used for dress socks, to match a dress shoe. This sock weight is also perfect for casual socks or everyday socks due to its versatility.

18. Midweight Socks

Midweight Socks
Midweight Socks

The midweight socks are the most popular and comfortable for all-year wear. They can also be worn almost every day (especially when they’re made of Merino wool).

19. Heavyweight Socks

Heavyweight Socks
Heavyweight Socks

We have heavyweight socks. The thickest, warmest socks available are heavyweight socks. They are designed for coldest conditions and extreme weather… or to feel like slippers. For activities such as mountaineering and hunting, many people choose heavyweight socks.

Types of Socks by Cushion

Cushion is an extra layer of material that is knitted into the socks (or specific areas) using terry loops. The amount of padding you choose depends on your preference and the type of activity. It can be comforting to have extra cushion when you are on your feet for hours or miles.

From the lightest to the maximum cushion, let’s discuss them.

20. No Cushion Socks

No Cushion Socks
No Cushion Socks

No Cushion socks do not have padding or cushioning to reduce impact on your foot. The terry loops are removed to keep the socks light, breathable and low-profile.

21. Cushion Socks

Cushion Socks
Cushion Socks

Cushion socks feature terry loops along the bottom and high-impact areas of the foot. These socks offer a balance between cushioning and breathability. This can be further broken down into three categories:

  • Standard Cushion is the ATV with the most cushioning. It has a cushion on the bottom, the top, and the toe. This is a good choice for through-hiking or cruising in town.
  • Contoured Cushion: We sculpt the Terry Loop placement to match your activity precisely, including Terry Loops that extend up the Achilles.
  • Targeted Cushion: Terry loops are added to the underfoot area for certain scenarios. We make work socks with extra cushioning in the toe, to help prevent numbness caused by steel toed boots. Also, we make ski socks that have padded shins to provide extra comfort while on the mountain.

22. Full Cushion Socks

Full Cushion Socks
Full Cushion Socks

Full Cushion socks are made with terry loops that run throughout the entire sock. This creates a super-padded sock which protects your foot as much as it can, while adding warmth, comfort and durability.

Types of Socks by Activity

We knit socks for specific activities because we believe that even the most technically advanced footwear is only as good as its socks.

23. Hike Sock

Hike Sock
Hike Sock

Our Hike Sock is the most popular. Hiking socks complement your footwear and are durable. They keep your feet comfortable and dry. There are many different styles of hiking socks, from the no-show to the over-the-calf and lightweight to heavyweight.

24. Running Socks

Running Socks
Running Socks

Running socks tend to be made of lightweight yarns and ultra-lightweight ones, which keep things light in running shoes.  Socks are knitted in a range of heights, from crew to no-show. They’re perfect for trail runs and road races.

25. Lifestyle Socks

Lifestyle Socks
Lifestyle Socks

This type of socks is not often sought after by people who are looking for Lifestyle socks. However, if you have ever needed socks and you didn’t know what to look for, then this may be the one you were searching for. Lifestyle socks can be divided into two categories, dress socks and casual. It’s usually down to a sock design that determines whether it goes with Crocs, Oxfords, or both. (We say formal events are the best time to wear statement socks).

26. Hunting Socks

Hunting Socks
Hunting Socks

Hunting Socks are made to be tough and withstand harsh conditions. They also keep your feet dry and warm. Our hunting socks are available in different weights to suit every season. They also feature a cushioned calf area that protects against boot laces.

27. Snow Socks

Snow Socks
Snow Socks

Snow socks designed for winter sports such as skiing and snowboarding. Low-profile socks are used to prevent pressure from being placed inside highly technical sports boots.

28. Tactical Socks

Tactical Socks
Tactical Socks

Tactical Socks meet the requirements for military branches and can be worn on uniforms from PT through combat.

29. Work Socks

Work Socks
Work Socks

Both work socks that are designed to protect and provide comfort for people who spend long hours in heavy-duty footwear like rubber and leather boots.

How to Choose a Right Types of Socks?

There are several factors to consider when choosing socks.

1. Match the socks to the shoes you wear.

    2. Which is more important to you: comfort or style? If you’re more concerned with how your feet feel at the end of the day, you might choose socks that match your outfit.

    3. Finally, choose the right material. Heavy socks are great for warmth and moisture management, but not for dress shoes. Silky socks don’t offer much protection from the cold.

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