Socks socks and more socks
This blog might not be the most exciting or riveting but considering how many people come in the shop and ask about socks, I thought it’s be worth reviewing a few. A good sock choice can make a massive difference to your comfort on any run. Whether they keep your feet from getting too hot, preventing blisters or keeping your feet warm if you’ve gone ankle deep in a bog. I have been wearing three different pairs for trail running and I wanted to compare what they were like. We stock three brands of sock in store, Smartwool, Injinji and Hilly. All three have their unique selling points and all three make good socks.
Smartwool PhD Run light cushion mini
I have always been a Smartwool customer. I discovered the brand through ski socks, which I have several pairs of and have worn to exhaustion. Smartwool are the original merino wool sock brand. Merino wool is highly breathable and odor free (you get away with a couple of runs without a wash). The PhD design gives padding where you need it in the heel and toe areas, whilst being well fitted across the rest of the foot using the 4 degree fit system which stops the sock wrinkling up at bend points. The PhD Run socks are 70% merino, 28% nylon and 2% elastane mix. Using this mixture the socks manage to keep their shape well through washing and are really durable. All this quality is reflected in the price at £14.99 they are not the cheapest per pair but I think from experience well worth the investment. I’ve been using the same pair now for 6 months and in general if they are clean and dry they are my go to choice for any run.
Injinji Trail Sock
Toe socks are an “interesting” item to suggest to people and for most people their first thoughts are generally “how’s about nooooo”. I was similarly not inspired by the idea at first but having now had 3 pairs, I’m definitely converted. They fit great to any foot shape and are ridiculously comfortable. We see it in the store as well, once people have had a pair of Injinji’s they keep coming back. Once you have them on your feet funny enough they feel natural. The Trail sock is well cushioned throughout with a breathable section across the top of the foot. If you suffer from blisters between the toes, these are definitely a good idea, as they don’t allow your toes to rub against each other. Functional reasons aside, I personally like the Injinji sock because they are a little bit different and just a bit fun to wear (I can’t stop wiggling my toes). The Injinji’s retail at £15.99, which is not surprising considering the technical fit of the sock.
Hilly Padded Socklet
The Hilly padded socklet is a very good running sock without the premium price, it’s not specifically a trail sock but it is definitely padded enough to be one. They are anatomical with a left and a right, and well padded in the heel and toe area similar to the Smartwool PhD Run light. The Hilly socks don’t feel quite as well fitted and are a little less breathable as the Smartwool or Injinji socks, after a long run I’ve found they are definitely holding a little more moisture than both the Smartwool’s and Injinji's. Having said that, the Hilly Padded Socklet retails at £10 which considering the quality you get is very good value.
Well there we go. Hopefully it's helpful and not too dreary, next week I'll do watching paint dry.