When the Ancient Greeks invented socks in the 8th century, their mere purpose is to keep feet warm in cold conditions as well as to absorb perspiration. But as people get more engaged in different activities, their arsenal of clothing needs also changes. The more time people spend outside doing activities such as hiking, jogging or camping, the more they need to keep their feet warm and dry. While waterproof shoes may be the good starting point to keep your feet dry, waterproof socks is still the best way to keep your feet dry in any conditions.
Waterproof hiking socks are specifically designed to keep your feet cool and dry while still maintaining its breathable properties. The 2 to 3 knit sock layers are what make the socks ideal for outdoor situations. Now that we know what a waterproof sock is, it is time to know what makes a best waterproof sock for hiking.
Waterproof socks are usually made of three layers so they are a bit thicker than ordinary socks. The layers are consists of the following:
This layer is the one that protects the sock against abrasion from the shoes. It is usually made of durable nylon with merino wool, bamboo or other comfortable materials as inner layer.
Between the two layers is a membrane that allows perspiration to pass to the outside while preventing outside water from reaching the skin.
The inner layer provides comfort, insulation and wicks the sweat away from the feet.
Knowing the layers that makes your socks is not enough as you also need to consider its ability to help fight bad odors. Hiking and mountaineering often bring unexpected challenges and while keeping your feet dry, warm and blister-free might be your top priority, you also need to consider keeping it odourless. Naturally anti-bacterial fabrics will not only mitigate the risk of getting smelly feet but it will also something that Mother Earth will thank you for as it is made of 70% bamboo so they are naturally eco-friendly. Aside from that, bamboo fibers are less expensive, tougher and softer.
A good waterproof sock is something that will keep your feet dry and warm even in the most rigorous condition but it is important to know that the more water-resistant the fabric is, the breathability it will offer. Waterproof socks works exactly as you’d expect: they will block the water from the outside. They are designed to stay put without sliding, which prevents chaffing while providing the protection you need. But they are not as breathable as an ordinary sock so it would be best if you only wear them on adventures that require them- such as hiking, trekking and backpacking in very wet conditions. In the end, context is super important when choosing the best waterproof socks for you so it is important that you read reviews about best waterproof socks for hiking before getting one.