How do Moisture Wicking Socks Work?
Moisture wicking? Breathable? Keeps feet dry? Moisture reducing? These are all terms that I've seen used to describe a moisture wicking sock.
When we first started to enter the sock market these terms were baffling. As baffling as a fortune cookie with a fortune written in Chinese- unless you speak Chinese of course.
The problem of moisture on the feet is not a new problem. It's an old problem and it's one of the most pressing problems that sock makers are chasing. Our feet sweat for a reason and it's to control temperature. A fancy term for this is thermo-regulation.
Moisture wicking socks are a must have for people working in boots and standing for long periods of time. In this brief article we’ll talk about moisture wicking and what it’s all about.
What is moisture wicking?
Moisture wicking is the ability to get rid of moisture by evaporation. There are a few factors that I should list like how much you sweat or the material of the sock that you are wearing. Some materials like cotton will hold moisture and it can lead to things like blisters, wet socks etc.
Chafing is an inflammation of the skin’s surfaces. The skin surfaces rub against each other leading to moisture, friction and also maceration. The friction along with the presence of a moist environment results in separation of the skin’s layers and a oozing lesion.
Another issue here is Tinea Pedis or athlete’s foot. These microorganisms live in a layer of the skin called keratin. And they like a warm and moist environment. There are different patterns and locations of Tinea Pedis yet, that’s another article. There are a few things that can put you at risk for Tinea Pedis: trauma, shower sharing and sweating with a break in the surface of the skin.
Pro-Tip: You can prevent Tinea Pedis by frequent changing of your socks.
With a moisture wicking sock that moisture has to have a means of dissipating. And there are different mechanisms that can allow this.
- moisture can move up the leg
- moisture can evaporate
Largely, it depends on the fabric and the weave. Keep in mind that sock manufacturers have been designing the same sock for the last 50 years. Same weave, same pattern.
Although there are a few socks out there that are well designed they are hard to come by. Cotton doesn’t keep your feet dry. It's hydrophilic means it attracts water.
How do moisture wicking socks work?
The mechanism of moisture wicking differs from socks to socks. In our socks moisture wicking socks allow moisture to travel up channels in the sock and evaporate over the length of the sock.
Think of these channels like a highway where some lanes are open and some are closed. These weave allows the passage of moisture throughout the sock.
Why is this important?
Without a good moisture wicking sock moisture leads to friction. Friction can be the cause of blisters. Keeping the feet dry means keeping the feet comfortable. A sock is meant to support the legs and feet.
One of the most important parts of our body. Moisture wicking is a central point for halting other problems. Moisture can lead to odor caused by bacterial infestation.
We've tested for these bacteria and applied our antibacterials against these bacteria. With a moisture ridden foot there is much more going on with the foot. The idea is to provide a moisture free environment for the feet.
A sock has a purpose. One of the purposes is to keep the feet dry. Depending on the type of sock and shoe you’re wearing you can minimize moisture.
Examples of moisture wicking socks?
Moisture wicking socks are a dime a dozen. Here are some examples of the most popular socks:
- Care Remote
- Sock Well
- Darn Tough
There are more. There are many more.
Moisture wicking socks have their place. Look for quality socks that keep your feet dry. A moisture wicking sock can go a long way and have far reaching benefits. Most problems with the feet start with moisture.
Odor, blisters discomfort, wet feet are reasons that you’ll need moisture wicking socks. Remember that the fabric and weave are critical in choosing a sock. A synthetic sock works well for the majority of situations. Cotton on the other hand attracts and holds moisture and is better suited for other applications.