Cold weather isn’t the most thrilling idea when it comes to your outdoor adventures, right? In those freezing moments, the socks matter more than anything else on you. If you’ve been struggling to keep your feet warm in winter, then a new pair of socks is something you must get.
Ideally, the right pair for you will not only keep your feet warm but it’ll also provide you maximum comfort. They will be lightweight so you can fit an extra pair in your backpack but also sturdy enough so you can machine-wash them.
Since we know that finding the right pair isn’t that easy, we’ve decided to research different thermal socks available on the market. We’ve also added a thing or two about features you need to pay most attention to when shopping for your next pair.
Our Top Picks
|Product||Size||Machine Wash||Additional Padding||Price|
|Pure Athlete Snowboard Warm||S, M, L||Yes||No||Check price on Amazon|
|Arctic Extreme Thick||M, L||Yes||Yes||Check price on Amazon|
|Polar Extreme Thermal||6 – 12||Yes||Yes||Check price on Amazon|
|Heat Holders Men's Thermal||7-12||Yes||Yes||Check price on Amazon|
|Bienvenu Men's Fuzzy||6 – 10||Yes, but not recommended||No||Check price on Amazon|
|Wigwam Canada||4-13||Yes||Yes||Check price on Amazon|
|DINY Home & Style Boot||10-13||Yes||Yes||Check price on Amazon|
|Carhartt Men's Extremes Cold Weather||6 – 12||Yes||Sole only||Check price on Amazon|
Things to Consider Before Buying
Before buying a new pair of socks that will keep you warm out there, you need to know some basics about what a good pair of socks really means.
A good pair of socks will come with some additional cushioning for greater comfort. That will make your movement less tiring and, of course, will keep you warm which is the basic point of the socks.
Padding is created in the socks by weaving absorbing fabrics such as acrylic and wool or by increasing the density of the weave. On long interval trips over difficult terrain, these extra padded socks can be a life-saver.
Air circulation may be pretty important when it comes to buying socks, no matter the season. If you’re going to spend more hours wearing the socks, you want to find the pair that allows for the maximum air circulation and helps you deal with sweat and some specific odor.
If sweat is an issue, you may want to avoid cotton – the smell can get easily absorbed by the material and it won’t go away until you actually wash them. Instead, opt for merino wool socks as they work wonders both for keeping you warm and for sweat issues.
It would be better if your thermal socks come with the wick design that can help in handling the moisture. In addition to this, you must know the type of socks you want – the ones that cover your feet like the regular cut socks or the ones that cover your legs as well.
In the market, the heated socks, which come with batteries, are pretty popular. Hence, you should know the type of socks you require. Currently, there are four types of designs popular in the market – fleece socks, heated socks, waterproof socks and toe socks. For camping in rainy weather, waterproof socks are the best choice because of their water absorption and quick dry ability.
What you must take into considerations while buying thermal socks is the type of material used in making them. In the winter, you would prefer wool to synthetic and you would like a material that has anti-bacterial and breathable properties. Wool is the best material when it comes to winter.
Also, for trekking and long hikes, wool is a good option because it is light in nature and provides great comfort. But when it comes to retaining shape, lycra and nylon are better than wool because they create a snug fit and provide arch support.
Size and Fitting
Several thick socks actually have quite loose fittings, hence, it will be better if you make sure that your socks are not just the best warm socks but they also fit well. If your socks are very tight, then they can stop the air circulation and can cause extreme discomfort while you are walking.
The height of the sock is merely a style or a personal preference in several cases but quarter and crew socks do not provide abrasion protection from the tops of your boot so socks that are tall are most recommended when you are wearing high or even mid-cut boots.
To improve support, some socks provide a reinforced and close-fitting weave in the arch. This is helpful if you have regular arches, flat feet or high arches.
You may know that arches develop plantar fasciitis or arch pain if they do not have proper support. This can cause unbearable pain and discomfort on your heels and make it difficult for you to walk.
Look for the size information on the product page of the manufacturer if you want to get the right size of socks. The sock should fit in the heel as well as the toe if it is the right size for your foot. The sock will bunch up over your toes if it is too long and it will slide down into the boot if it is too short. In addition to this, if you are buying heavy cushioned socks, then remember to try them on with your boots to make sure they fit comfortably.
Best Products on Today’s Market
Now that you know what to look for while buying a pair of socks, here is a list of best warm socks we think you can depend on.
PureAthlete Snowboard Warm Socks
Size: S, M, L
Specific features: Support for shin and calf, ultra-warm socks, moisture-wicking, soft fabric, extremely lightweight
Best use: Snowboarding, skiing
The PureAthelete Snowboard Socks may be one of the warmest socks. Designed with yarn that feels soft, the socks should offer you enough warmth even when spending days out on the slopes. On top of that, they’re lightweight and offer a nice fit. Designed to offer proper cushioning through their support for your shin and calf region, you should be able to ski – or walk – miles with them.
However, that doesn’t mean they should be used for snowboarding only – feel free to use these while doing any outdoor winter activity like snowboarding or even walks in the mountain.
These socks are made of spandex (7%), nylon (6%) and acrylic (87%) that allows keeping your feet at the right temperature. That also means that these socks allow air circulation and keep feet from getting sweaty or too warm. If you are not completely satisfied with these thermal socks, then you have the option to return the product within 30 days and receive a full refund.
- Moisture wicking
- Support for shin and calf region
- 100% refund guarantee
- Ultra warm
- Not durable
- Tore in a short interval
- Snug fit
Related: If you are getting ready for the cold winter then you should consider some quality warm pants. The Arctix Men’s Snow Sports Cargo Pants come in seven sizes ranging from small to XX-large and provide warmth in a low bulk, lightweight garment through 85 grams of ThermaTech insulation. Around 600 denier ballistic are used in the pants to reinforce the hem, ankle and scuff guards to hold up against any damage. To keep moisture out and warmth in, boot gaiters with grippers create a seamless integration.
Arctic Extreme Thick Heat Thermal Socks
Size: M, L
Specific features: Amazing for sports, suitable for skiing and hiking, warmer than cotton, padded comfort
Best use: Hiking, deep snow
The Arctic Extreme Thick Heat Thermal Socks can be used even on the coldest winter days – they are 7 times warmer than your normal cotton socks. The socks, coming with a decent padding, allow the user to hike or ski even in freezing winter days without experiencing problems with comfort.
On top of that, you can definitely use these ultra-warm socks for any outdoor sport or activity as well. As far as the material goes, these thermal socks are made of 6% polyester, 1% spandex, and 93% acrylic material. But the key thing here is that the material used to make them isn’t only made to keep you warm – it actually solves a very annoying problem: it is non-itchy! On top of that, the yarn used should help your feet get some proper circulation and keep moisture away.
Being softer than wool, you can definitely wash these socks in the washing machine without worrying they’ll lose shape. These socks are available in several different varieties as far as the color and design are concerned.
Coming as a great fit for most buyers, chances are, you won’t be annoyed by your socks constantly sliding off your feet – there is a ribbed design that should keep the sock in the right place. However, the fitting might be too tight for some buyers – consider upping a size or trying two different sizes before settling done with the pair ideal for you.
- Keep feet dry and sweat free
- Low price
- Useful for outdoor athletic activities in cold weather
- Several color options
- Issues in size chart
- A little thicker material
Related: The Burton Gore-Tex Gloves, which are made in the USA, will keep your hands warm in the cold winter. These gloves have thermacore insulation, which provides warmth all day and keeps the moisture out. These warm gloves have a vent pocket, which works as a hidden heater. Being extremely lightweight, they are waterproof and you can use them while snowboarding. These insulated mitts also have the feature of 2 layer fabric that and 4-way stretch DRYRIDE thermex liner.
Polar Extreme Thermal Sock
Size: Shoe size 6 – 12
Specific features: Moisture wicking material, ultra warm, excellent heat retainer, brushed lining
Best use: Camping, hiking
The Polar Extreme Thermal Socks may look just like your regular pair of socks – however, they come with a brushed lining that helps in keeping your feet dry during the cold weather months, a feature that certainly makes them special. On top of that, an additional layer has been added for greater comfort and reduced irritation.
Made of yarn with amazing thermal properties, they should trap heat without a problem. But don’t think sweat might be a problem here – the fabric is moisture-wicking, so you should be able to stay odor-free even after hours wearing the socks.
As far as the sizes are concerned, you may be a bit confused as they’re ranked both for a shoe size and a sock size. We’ve chosen to go with the shoe size rating, as that should make things easier for most people when it comes to doing orders.
While they’re not waterproof, they do come with heavy cushioning and brushed lining for better comfort. On top of that, the socks come with a woven pattern that assists in maintain sock elasticity and shape. However, do note that some have complained about their elasticity – if you have wider feet, you might want to go up a size.
- Moisture-wicking fabric
- Insulated socks
- Brushed lined socks keep your feet extra comfortable
- Low price
- Cold weather defenders
- Only men can use them
- Not elastic enough
- Not very durable
Related: Chilly winters demand warm clothes, hence, you must be ready with the important gear when the time comes. The Therma Tek Men’s Top & Bottom Underwear Set is one essential winter garment that you must have in your wardrobe. This thermal top and bottom underwear set is made of spandex (8%) and microfiber (92%). There is no tag on the fleece so you won’t have to deal with itchy tags. To increase thermal insulation and add warmth, the lightweight is lined.
Heat Holders Men’s Thermal Socks
Specific features: Multiple color options, cold weather defenders, excellent tog rating, 7x warmer than cotton
Best use: Snowboarding, skiing
The Heat Holders Men’s Thermal Socks are made of a superior quality material – 3% polyester, 91% acrylic, 5% nylon and 1% elastane and as the name suggests, they may know how to keep your feet warm. But don’t think that the thicker material won’t allow you to wash them in a machine – being seven times warmer than regular cotton socks, you could easily throw your pair with the rest of your socks.
With a rather decent price, these socks might sound like the best warm socks in the market – though we’ll let you decide on that one. Made with advanced insulating yarn, that’s specially designed to keep your feet warm but not sweaty, each pair comes with some excellent moisture breathing abilities that offer superior quality performance insulation against the cold.
In addition to all this, the loops of these thermal socks create a unique pile of padding that keeps your feet supported and comfortable throughout the day. If long walks outside during colder months are your thing, then this one might be the pair to go.
If looks matter to you, then you’d be happy to know that this model comes in more than 30 color options – each one being extremely fluffy and soft. All in all, this might be a good buying option for those struggling with cold feet.
- Impressive 2.3 tog rating
- 7X warmer than cotton
- Brushed lining inside
- Large range of designs and colors available
- Only for men
- Might be too thick
Related: The Duofold Men’s Thermal Pant should work wonders in extremely cold weather! Made of 60% cotton and 40% polyester, is a rich knit that traps air between two thermal layers and keeps your legs warm for longer periods. The pant has no itchy tag on it and putting them on should be easy and fast, without them annoyingly slipping all the time even when worn on longer trips.
Bienvenu Men’s Fuzzy Floor Socks
Size: Shoe size 6 – 10
Specific features: Multiple color options, premium microfiber material
Best feature: Camping and hiking
If fluffy socks around the house are your thing, then the Bienvenu Fuzzy Floor Socks should be the right one for your needs! Made of spandex (20%) and polyester (80%), they come in a package of four pairs, all in different colors. But being soft isn’t their only benefit – they should prove to be great at keeping you warm both indoor and out! The premium Microfiber used in the making should keep your feet soft, sweat-free and warm all day long, no matter the distance you cover.
However, if you have wider feet, pay attention to the sizing of the socks. Unfortunately, if you’re wearing a larger size than US shoe size 10, then you’ll probably be better off finding another pair. On top of that, they can be thicker than what you’d expect, at least when it comes to getting socks you’ll wear with hiking shoes/boots on.
As far as the washing goes, the socks come with washing instructions – which is a bit weird for socks – but in all fairness, you can either wash them by hand or in the machine. If you go with the second option, make sure you’re keeping the temperature dry – and don’t be tempted to throw them in the dryer afterward, as that could create a mess.
- Premium microfiber for sweat-free feet
- Multiple design and color options
- Super soft material
- Amazing design
- Heel design for comfort
- Only for men
- Thicker than expected
- Hard to wash
Related: The Heat Holders Beanie Hat is both useful and trendy when winter comes around. The thermal beanie, which works as a fantastic gift, comes with a furry brushed lining which should keep you pretty warm. The beanie should help you tackle one of the most annoying problems – itchiness!
Wigwam Canada Socks
Size: Shoe size – 4-13
Specific features: Multiple design options, warm and fully cushioned, durable
Best feature: Skiing, hunting, and hiking
The Wigwam Canada Socks are your traditional warm socks with a twist. Coming in several pretty average designs, the socks are fully padded and specifically designed to keep your feet comfortable, dry and warm.
The material used in making these socks is a blend of wool (50%), nylon (13%), acrylic (25%), stretch polyester (6%) and stretch nylon (6%) – all of that makes for a thicker, heavier sock. However, if you aren’t bothered by it, you might actually enjoy the additional padding.
No matter the outdoor activity you choose to wear them for, they should keep your feet odor-free and dry thanks to their moisture-wicking ability. For prolonged durability, this pair has a reinforced toe closure and foot bottom.
However, they do come with at a higher price and regarding the price, you’ll only get a pair. But if you’re thinking of doing an investment in the long run, this might be a good buying option. The socks should prove to be very low maintenance, with you being able to wash and dry them easily.
- Fully cushioned boot sock
- Fortified sole for durability
- Moisture-wicking ability
- Conventional toe closure
- Thicker than expected
- Old design
Related: If your jacket is lacking a hoodie, look no further – grab the Ergodyne N-Ferno Thermal Fleece Balaclava which should keep your entire face warm but still allow you to breathe easily. Made from wind-protective materials, this functional hood comes with a hinge design that allows the customer to wear it in a variety of ways, from a neck gaiter to ski mask. The warm fleece is stretchable, meaning it can fit any head size and provide ultimate comfort and protection.
DINY Thermal Boot Socks
Size: 10 – 13
Specific features: Ultra warm, 100% mega brush, warm & fuzzy thick lining, 2.3 tog rating
Best feature: Camping, hiking
If thick, fluffy socks are your favorite, then the DINY Thermal Boot Socks might prove as a good fit. Following an inside lining, the socks are also brushed on the inside for greater comfort that should keep you warm for longer periods. Coming in a pair of three, the socks may be ideal for those who like wearing several pair of socks at once.
However, you can say your old habits goodbye, as a pair of these should be more than enough. Actually, a pair of these will keep your feet warm even when temperatures hit the -13°F – which you have to admit, is rather impressive!
Featuring a high insulation, you can wear them in a variety of outdoor activities and still keep warm – feel free to explore slopes or go skiing. However, do note that the socks might not go as high as you’d expect calf socks to go, which could be disappointing to some.
- 100% mega brush
- 3 tog rating
- Ultra warm and fuzzy thick lining
- Brushed inside for additional comfort
- Moisture controlling design
- Thicker than expected
- Old design
- Not long enough for calves
Related: The Heat Holders Thermal Neck Warmer is another essential winter gear that you must have during the cold winters. The polyester and acrylic blend neck warmer has a tog rating of 2.6. You can use this neck warmer as a face balaclava as well as a hat. Further, this fleece lined neck warmer keeps your ear warm while walking, hiking, trekking, cycling, skiing, motorcycling, etc.
Carhartt Extremes Cold Weather Boot Socks
Size: Shoe size 6 – 12
Specific features: Fashionable design, fights odors, insulated socks, ultra warm
Best feature: Snowboarding, Camping
Looking to keep sweaty feet dry but odor-free at the same time? Look no more, as the Carhartt Extremes Cold Weather Boot Socks might be just the thing you need! Made by a proven brand, Carhartt is pretty popular for its craftsmanship and this pair shouldn’t be an exception. The material used in making this sock includes acrylic (70%), nylon (14%), lycra spandex (1%), and wool (15%).
However, what makes the socks special is that they’re made with a brand-new FastDry technology that helps your feet stay completely dry and warm, no matter how long you wear the socks on for.
As far as comfort is concerned, there’s probably little reason to worry – being additionally padded and featuring an ankle vent to reduce bulk, you’ll very likely be able to walk miles with them on. On top of that, they go pretty high up on the calf so if you’d rather skip the man pant thing, you may want to give these a try.
On top of that, you have a variety of designs and colors to pick and a couple of models include shorter calf length, which might be good for times when you don’t really want a higher sock. Each model can be machine washed though to make sure to pay attention to the sizing chart, as you might need to up a size.
- Fully cushioned sock
- FastDry technology dries feet
- Helps you fight odors
- Thicker than expected
- Size issue
Related: Keep both your hands and toes warm with Carhartt Waterproof Insulated Glove. These amazing gloves have an ultra soft insulation that keeps your hands warm at all times. Even though they’re not made for machine washing, they do have the fast dry technology lining that quickly wicks away both water and sweat.
The short buying guide on socks should help you in identifying the different features that you need in your next pair of socks. Hopefully, by now, you learned what matters most to you and you can tell what you’ll be looking for in your next buy. Remember, the ideal pair should offer you not only warmth but additional support and excellent comfort as well.
Are there any favorite socks of yours that kept you warm even on the coldest of winter nights? If so, please share with us in the comments – we’d love to hear back from you!