When you go shopping for socks, you may be shocked by how many different options there are on the market.
Understanding the different types of socks that are available can help you be much more comfortable.
Not only can socks keep you warm, but they can also be used to help you have the proper attire or to make sure your feet are comfortable in your shoes.
If you will be buying socks, make sure that you get something that works for you over the long term.
Here are some differences between socks that are important to know.
Tube Socks Vs. Crew Socks
Tube socks are built to look almost like a tube, and crew socks have a spot for each heel.
When you look at a tube sock, it almost looks like a pipe.
They are built for you to put on either foot, so it truly does not matter which foot the tube sock goes on.
The crew socks, on the other hand, have a heel.
This heel is usually made with a different color thread so that people can see which foot the sock should go on.
Most of the crew socks on the market are also not as long as the tube socks.
The shorter crew socks make them a better option for certain occasions or weather.
Tube socks are not quite as popular as crew socks, and in fact, people are starting to purchase more and more short socks.
The short socks will help to keep your legs a bit cooler, and in the end, they also make your laundry a bit easier as well.
The tube socks and the crew socks are not the only options on the market.
In fact, most people are going to want to have a wide range of sock choices.
If you are heading out for a jog or going to a wedding, you will need different socks to choose from.
Here are a few of the most popular types that you can consider.
Different Types Of Socks And The Benefits
The sock aisle of your local department store can end up being quite a confusing place.
There are so many choices, and when you add in options related to color and size, the choices multiply.
Here are some of the basic socks that you will see and the benefits of each particular option.
Understanding the purpose of the sock helps to ensure that it will be a better, more functional fit.
1. Over The Knee Socks
Over the knee socks are going to come up and go over a person’s knee.
These are not very common socks, and you won’t often find them sold in larger packs.
Most of the time, the over-the-knee socks are sold in single pairs, and they can come in both solid colors and patterns.
Some will wear these over-the-knee socks as part of a costume, but they can also be (and have been) part of school uniforms.
Many times, women would wear a skirt and then wear over the knee socks in combination with it to make a fashion statement.
The over the knee socks can sometimes be referred to as stockings, but this is not the definition that all people would use for a stocking.
You can wear over-the-knee socks with boots or with a dress.
In the wintertime, some people use over-the-knee socks as an additional layer to an outfit with leggings.
The over the knee socks are going to help add a layer of warmth to your outfit and make it easier for you to stay comfortable and warm.
Overall, over-the-knee socks are a great addition to a wardrobe.
You likely won’t need too many pairs of these socks around, but it can be a lot of fun to have a few pairs of them in your wardrobe.
2. Knee Socks
Knee socks are shorter than over-the-knee socks, as you probably guessed by the name.
The knee socks are going to go over the calf but stop just short of the knee.
These are, again, used by women when wearing a dress or with a skirt.
However, knee socks can also be worn by men who need something under a suit in the winter months.
The knee socks can provide a bit of extra warmth as well.
One of the most important things about a knee sock is that you choose something that fits you properly.
If a knee sock is too big, it becomes really difficult to wear.
The sock continually falls down, and it is inconvenient to keep pulling it up.
Overall, knee socks are available in both plain and patterned styles, and you will probably want a few of these in your sock collection as well.
3. Crew Socks
Crew socks, the original socks that we opened with, are going to be shorter than the knee-length socks, and they are the ones that have designated heels for you to place your feet.
These are probably some of the most common types of socks that you could ever find.
Many people like to wear them to work or to wear them for the gym or athletic sports.
The crew socks can come in many different types of fabrics, and this is where you start to see socks being sold in packages of six or eight pairs as opposed to just one novelty design.
Crew socks are relatively affordable because they are so popular, and this is an option that most people are wearing.
Some sock companies will offer a micro crew sock.
This is going to be shorter than the crew but still offers some of the same benefits.
Overall, it makes a lot of sense to invest in some crew socks so that you can say that your wardrobe is ready for any occasion.
4. Ankle Socks
As we mentioned, people are starting to realize they like socks that are a bit shorter than standard.
The shorter socks are great for working out, and they also make a good choice for when you are wearing shorts.
Sometimes finding the right sock length for a pair of shorts can be really difficult.
Some companies are going to refer to their ankle socks as quarter socks or low-rise socks.
These terms essentially mean the same thing.
The sock is going to come just above the top of the sneaker to the ankle.
It will be visible, but it won’t stick out the top as far as a crew sock would.
The ankle socks are very popular for athletes.
You will notice this being a choice for runners and also for golfers who need to make sure their feet stay comfortable and dry over a long period of time.
Whether you are trying to run a marathon or simply don’t enjoy have a sock going up your entire leg, the ankle sock is a great choice to have.
5. No Show Socks
The shortest of the sock options on the market is the no-show socks.
The no-show socks are not going to be visible out of the top of your shoe.
If you are going for a look that would be interrupted or disturbed by the look of the sock, you may find that the no-show sock is the best option.
One thing we can say for certain about the no-show socks is that it makes sense to invest in a higher quality sock.
Since these socks are below the shoe line, there is not much that will keep them up on your foot.
Therefore, if you buy lower quality no-show socks, they will end up in the bottom of your shoe where your toes are from time to time.
Some people will refer to these types of socks pedi socks.
If you see them advertised as that, just know it means that they are designed to cover just the bottom part of the foot.
If you are a person who wears loafers or boat shoes a lot, the no-show could be a great choice.
Many times, these shoes can get uncomfortable or have odor problems without the use of a sock.
With the no-show socks, you can eliminate these issues and still keep your foot cool and comfortable.
It takes a certain type of person to feel comfortable with the no-show sock, so you may only want to purchase a few pairs of these to see how they work out for you.
Why Are They Called Crew Socks?
In today’s world of fashion, we have noticed that socks are basically categorized by their length.
Crew socks are known for traveling just above the calf into the leg area.
They are not as long as knee socks, but they certainly cover more of the leg than an ankle sock.
The crew sock got its name many years ago.
In the decade of the 1940s, when America was at war, the military would all have to dress in the same basic uniform.
The socks that came with the uniform would be the same length for all soldiers.
This, of course, was done so that everyone looked the same, and the overall appearance of power was quite strong as well.
The crew onboard a Naval vessel always referred to their socks as crew socks.
This is how the name was initially coined because people who were part of the crew would have to wear the socks.
Today, the name has stuck even though the socks are certainly used for more than just military uniforms.
The crew sock is the most popular length of sock and something that most people will have a few of in their wardrobe.
Even today, young people are starting to wear crew socks with sneakers and shorts.
It has become sort of a fashion statement, especially among young boys who find the look to be rather athletic and sporty.
It also helps that with shorts and crew socks, only part of the leg is exposed if you are going to play a sport or wear this in the cooler temperatures.
Why Is It Called A Tube Sock?
A tube sock may seem like a strange name.
However, if you have ever worn or seen a tube sock, you will quickly learn where it gets the name.
A tube sock simply looks like a tube.
There is no place that you will be able to put your heel, and because of this, the tube sock is just an extended opening that your foot goes in.
The tube socks were originally created because they were cheaper to manufacture and could be produced faster.
This allowed manufacturers to offer reduced pricing on their socks and ensure that people could purchase more of them.
You will probably find that most companies that offer premium socks will offer them in the crew length but not necessarily the tube model.
A tube sock is typically known for being a more affordable option.
How Do I Know What Size Sock I Need?
If you look at the packaging on a sock, you will see that some will offer sizes, and others will be one size fits all.
If the sock is a one size fits all, it is probably made from a stretchy material and able to accommodate a variety of different foot sizes.
If the sock is showing sizes, you need to be careful about how you determine which size is the best for your foot.
The typical numbers on the packaging of a sock are going to be the length of a foot as opposed to the shoe size.
This gets very confusing for people because they will look at a package of socks and see something like “9 to 11” on the sock bag.
The problem is that if you purchase this 9 to 11 thinking that the sock is the same as your shoe size, you may be quite disappointed.
The size of the shoe is good to know, but you will often have to convert that into the sock size.
Most of the time, the sock size will be the number of inches of your foot.
For instance, if your foot is ten inches long, the 9 to 11 sock size would fit you perfectly.
Anything different, and you may have to change the size of the sock you need.
Try to keep this in mind because you will end up needing to know both your shoe and your sock size the next time you go shopping.
Luckily, socks are pretty flexible, and even if the size is a bit off, they should still fit.
The issue will become the way it feels on your foot and whether or not it stays in place as you complete an activity.
Which Is Better: Crew Sock Or Tube Sock?
Now that you have a better idea of what the crew sock is and what the tube sock is, you may be wondering which one makes sense to buy.
If you are looking for something that will be great for sports and have an old-school look, the tube sock is a perfect choice.
If instead, you want a versatile sock that will match with many different outfits and work for a variety of occasions, the crew sock is the better choice.
Chances are you are going to have much better options for crew socks than you will for tube socks.
The options tend to stand out because they are some of the most popular socks on the market.
Many men wear crew socks for work as well as for weddings, and therefore, the market is a competitive one.
There will be options for colors, sizes, and patterns when you are looking for crew socks.
This is why we typically will say that crew socks are your better overall choice.
With a crew sock, you get options and functionality all wrapped up into a pair of socks.
Hopefully, now you can go sock shopping and make the correct distinction between a tube sock and a crew sock.
Once you own both pairs, you will likely have no trouble telling them apart.
As comfortable and great as both pairs of socks can be, there is a distinct difference between the performance that they offer.
Always ensure that you are purchasing a sock that will fit your foot correctly.
Remember, sock sizes are a bit different than shoes, and you may have to make an adjustment.