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The Best Running Socks

Last updated on March 8, 2022

We looked at the top 5 Running Socks and dug through the reviews from 15 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best Running Socks.

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What’s the most important piece of equipment for a runner? If you answered “shoes,” you’re not entirely wrong. The longer and harder you hit the track, the more it pays to have a durable, comfortable running shoe. But veteran runners know that those shoes won’t be worth much without a good pair of socks underneath.

Don’t believe it? Try running a 5K or two in your regular tube socks and see what condition they come back in. For durability alone, it’s worth paying a little extra to have foot coverings that can stand up to your routine — but that’s hardly all you should expect out of a quality pair of running socks.

The biggest difference between running socks and casual ones is the material. Cotton may be the gold standard for comfort if you’re sitting around the house during winter, but you should avoid it at all costs when it comes time for a jog. As soon as you start to sweat, that cotton absorbs and holds it. That won’t just make your feet uncomfortable and smelly, it can make them prone to blisters as well.

Your best bet is a breathable, synthetic fabric like nylon or polyester. They’re fairly common, comfortable if woven well and can lift moisture away from the skin. If you’re running in colder climes, you might consider spending a little more for merino wool, a natural fiber that’s able to keep your feet warm while still regulating moisture buildup.

The next thing to consider is fit. We tend to think of socks as “one size fits most,” but runners need to be a little more picky. Loose socks can mean disaster on an extended jog, so you want something a little tighter. If you’re going for ankle socks, make sure that they’re especially secure. You might even look for a tab on the back that protects the heel and keeps it from sliding down once the shoe is on.

Many runners swear by compression socks, which fit tighter on strategic areas of the foot. This can increase blood flow when it counts and lead to faster recovery times. There can be a lot of fringe benefits too, such as enhanced arch support.

Subtle touches in the design of the sock can make all the difference. If you’re prone to blisters on your toes, look for socks that are seamless in the front. (That extra stitching can chafe over time.) If your heels suffer a lot of wear and tear, many socks have extra cushioning on the back. There are even socks that have an extra layer that’s designed to act as a buffer against excess friction. Keep in mind that while cushioning in general may seem like a good thing, you still want to let your feet breathe and feel the surface to a certain degree. It may take a little time and a few pairs of socks to find your sweet spot, but it’s worth it.

Our Picks For The Top Running Socks

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Product Overview
Our Take
Pros
Cons
 Top Pick

PAPLUS Ankle-Cut 15-20 mmHg Compression Running Socks

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PAPLUS

Ankle-Cut 15-20 mmHg Compression Running Socks

These running socks are more than just cozy. The compression they provide to the ankles can help increase blood flow, and there's extra support around the arch. They're especially good for long runs thanks to the breathable material.

Overall Take

Snug, Protective FitThese runner's socks are tight at the ankles and supportive of the arches.

Pros
" These ankle compression socks have good arch support and a seamless toe. These have a superior fit so they wont slip."
Cons
"Only available in two sizes and not machine washable."
 Runner Up

Saucony Men’s Mesh No-Show Running Socks, 6-Pack

Saucony

Men's Mesh No-Show Running Socks, 6-Pack

The polyester blend in these socks has the ability to wick moisture away, leaving feet cooler. Along the sole, there's a touch of extra cushioning. These vented socks also have arch compression for stability and to prevent bunching.

Overall Take

Keeps Feet DryThe moisture-wicking material in these no-show socks keeps sweat at bay.

Pros
" No show socks that have a touch of arch compression and padded sole. Ultra wicking fibers keeps your feet fresh and dry"
Cons
"These socks run small and may lack durability."
 We Also Like

CelerSport Low-Cut Tab Running Socks, 6-Pack

CelerSport

Low-Cut Tab Running Socks, 6-Pack

These socks can go the extra mile without tearing. Not only is the combed cotton/polyester/spandex material durable, it's knitted with an eye toward extra density that still allows it to be breathable. They also have heel tabs to prevent slippage.

Overall Take

Soft Yet SportyA cotton blend keeps these cushioned ankle socks cozy yet breathable.

Pros
" High density knitting makes these socks durable and comfortable. Seamless toe support to prevent soreness."
Cons
"They tend to pill after repeated use and thick for athetic socks."
 Strong Contender

Balega No-Show Cushioned Running Socks

Balega

No-Show Cushioned Running Socks

These no-show socks of mostly polyester and nylon are designed with sensitive feet in mind. The seamless front keeps toes from chafing and mesh ventilation panels provide airflow. The heel is reinforced; a heel tab helps mitigate slippage.

Overall Take

Super Secure FitRun in comfort with these well-designed, well-ventilated no-show socks.

Pros
" Seamless toe prevents irritation and eliminates blisters. Heel tabs keep the socks from sliding. Excellent moisture wicking capabilities."
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
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Products Considered

We identified the majority of the running socks available to purchase.
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Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

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Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: BestReviews, Mom Junction, Health, Sports Illustrated Reviews, The Drive.

195,872

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including

Our experts reviewed the top 5 Running Socks and also dug through the reviews from 15 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Running Socks.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

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What to Look For

You wouldn’t dream of buying running shoes without checking the fit. Socks need to fit your feet as well, but they also need to fit the kind of run you’ll be taking. It may seem like thicker socks with a lot of cushion would keep your soles more comfortable, but that’s not necessarily the case. On shorter jogs, that excess material can cause sweat to build up quickly.

Save the thick wool socks for long runs in winter weather. Thinner socks are best for your daily run, though you can spend a little extra on breathable socks that have pads on strategic areas of the sole.

Running Sock Rankings

1. PAPLUS Ankle-Cut 15-20 mmHg Compression Running Socks

Overall Score: 9.8
Reviews Included: 4

2. Saucony Men’s Mesh No-Show Running Socks, 6-Pack

Overall Score: 8.8
Reviews Included: 7

3. CelerSport Low-Cut Tab Running Socks, 6-Pack

Overall Score: 8.5
Reviews Included: 4

4. Balega No-Show Cushioned Running Socks

Overall Score: 8.4
Reviews Included: 4

5. Eallco Women’s Cushioned Ankle Running Socks, 6-Pack

Overall Score: 7.9
Reviews Included: 3

More to Explore

Which came first; the sock or the shoe? They probably came into use around the same time, depending on how strictly you define the word “sock.” Based on archaeological evidence (like cave paintings), early humans were keeping their feet cozy with animal pelts or plant material as far back as the Stone Age.

The first written reference to socks comes from the Greek poet Hesiod in the 8th century B.C.E. In his poem “Works and Days” he writes of matted animal hair socks named piloi which were commonly worn with sandals (one of the earliest fashion faux pas). By the 2nd century C.E., Romans were wrapping their feet in strips of leather and woven fabrics, and created the first fitted socks. They would have kept them in place with a tie of some kind.