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Clothing, Essentials

9 Best Work Socks for Steel Toe Boots Reviewed in 2020 (US & UK)

Last updated on 9th Jan 2020 by Abby

Quick Comparison

Which work socks are the best with boots?

After considering 20+ work socks but testing only 9 – and checking their breathability, cushioning, arch support, machine washability, and odor protection – we can now say with certainty that the Bridgedale Merinofusion are the best summer and the Wigwam Men’s At Work are the best winter work socks.

While the Bridgedale Merinofusion has a low cut, ankle support, shin bone protection, and extra cushioning – which make it ideal for summer, the Wigwam Men’s At Work contains wool, has a fully cushioned footbed with reinforced sole and odor guard to keep your feet fresh in winter conditions.

  1. 1
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    Stay Fresh Mens Retro Games Socks

    Available in 15 different colors, the Stay Fresh Mens Retro Games Socks contain 85% cotton, 12% polyamide and 3% elastane. While the former adds warmth to your feet, elastane is known for adding elasticity to the sock’s cuff.

    What’s more, these socks come in the one-size-fits-all category. Or, if your size ranges from 7 to 11 (UK) and 41 to 46 (EU), these socks will fit your feet just right. Still, if you feel let down after purchasing them, a 90-day money back guarantee is also on offer.

     

    The Good
    • One size fits all
    • Huge color range
    • 90-day money back guarantee
    The Bad
    • Not good for summer conditions
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    6 Pairs Mens Ultimate Review

    Available in a pair of six, these socks have been made of a combination of cotton and elastane. They are antimicrobial treated to make sure they keep your feet fresh all day. They have a cushioned sole to take some pressure off your feet and are also hard wearing.

    They have a reinforced heel to protect the most high-impact part of your foot. Then there’s the reinforced toe which prevents the formation of holes in these socks.

     

    The Good
    • Reinforced toe and heel
    • Antimicrobial treated
    • Inexpensive
    The Bad
    • Tend to be a tad too large
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    Dickies Moisture Control Crew Socks Review

    The Dickies Moisture Control Crew Socks are available in black color and contain soft, breathable fibers which allow them to control moisture. The entire area of the socks contains ventilation channels to increase airflow throughout your feet and reduce sweating.

    Also, for added stability, they provide arch compression support. Both the heel as well as the toe of the socks are reinforced to enhance their durability.

     

    The Good
    • Keep feet dry
    • Contain ventilation channels
    • Reinforced heel and toe
    The Bad
    • Astronomically expensive
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    Dickies Mens Cushion Crew Review

    Compare them with the Dickies Moisture Control, the Cushion Crew socks provided more cushioning, especially on the sole. They are a blend of 72% cotton, 26% polyester, and 2% elastane. Also, they are available in a pair of five socks per pack.

    More importantly, these socks have been provided with reinforced toe and heel. However, since they tend to be heavy on the cotton side, their lack of breathability might not allow you to wear these socks in the summertime.

     

    The Good
    • Half Cushioned Sole
    • Contains Reinforced Toe and Heel
    • Elegant Design
    The Bad
    • Not for summer time
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    Wigwam Cool Lite Hiker Pro Review

    Available in six different color patterns, these large sized socks rely on Ultimax moisture control system to dispense moisture and keep your feet cool. They have a seamless toe closure to reduce friction and both the sole and leg portion of these socks are cushioned.

    Moving on, the breathable mesh panel of the Wigwam makes them comfortable. The fact that they are available in only large size means they’ll fit adult foot sizes medium and large.

     

    The Good
    • Have a moisture control system
    • Seamless toe closure
    • Both the leg and sole portions are cushioned
    • Breathable mesh panel
    The Bad
    • Certain sizes are expensive
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    Wigwam Men's Low Sock Review

    Coming in four different colors, the Wigwam Low Sock is US manufactured and comes with a 2-year performance guarantee. Also, since these socks are for running, you’d see no trace of cotton in them. Instead, the likes of polyamide, acrylic, and elastane, among other fibers, are what make this wearable.

    What’s more, it isn’t a unisex sock either, which means it is equally suitable for both men and women. Also, it is machine washable and contains breathable mesh panels to take care of moisture.

     

    The Good
    • Breathable mesh panel
    • Doesn’t contain cotton
    • Comes with a 2-year performance guarantee
    • Machine washable
    The Bad
    • Toe and heel aren’t reinforced
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    Wigwam Men's At Work Review

    Consisting of 35% wool, these socks also contain stretch nylon alongside acrylic and olefin. They boast a fully cushioned footbed and an odor guard to prevent foot odor, while also taking care of Athlete’s foot. More importantly, they have a reinforced sole and a low-profile toe closure. What’s more, it also provides a stay-put elastic leg.

    Also, while you can machine wash it, the manufacturer recommends that you use warm water for the same. However, what you cannot do with these socks is bleach them, otherwise, their performance might suffer.

     

    The Good
    • Made in the USA
    • Contains Wool
    • Fully cushioned footbed
    • Has Odor Guard
    The Bad
    • Cannot bleach
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    Bonjour 4 Pairs Review

    The Bonjour 4 Pairs Men’s Socks are a combination of cotton, polyester, and elastane. They are machine washable and feature grip zones and extra cushioning, plus ankle support. For shin bone protection, padding is provided in that area.

    They also feature a long hose with a top which is comfortable to stretch. Also, due to cotton, they keep your feet warm in extreme winter conditions. Also, they are available for both men and women.

     

    The Good
    • Contains Grip Zones and Extra Cushioning
    • Ankle Support and Shin Bone protection
    • Long hose with a comfortable stretch
    • Machine washable
    The Bad
    • Not that comfortable
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    Bridgedale Merinofusion Review

    The Bridgedale Merinofusion socks are designed for walking in warmer conditions. They are available in two colors, the first of which is natural and the other grey. They provide over-foot ventilation to assure adequate air flow throughout the sock.

    Also, they provide a soft knit cuff and come with a 3-year guarantee. Bridgedale attaches additional Lycra® to the under-arch and above-heel area of the sock to prevent it from slipping down. The same is also used in the cuff to make sure it stays up.

     

    The Good
    • Contains Grip Zones and Extra Cushioning
    • Ankle Support and Shin Bone protection
    • Long hose with a comfortable stretch
    • Machine washable
    The Bad
    • Not that comfortable
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Side-by-side

100%

Stay Fresh Mens Retro Games Socks

  • One size fits all
  • Huge color range
  • 90-day money back guarantee
Check price on amazon
100%

6 Pairs Mens Ultimate Review

  • Reinforced toe and heel
  • Antimicrobial treated
  • Inexpensive
Check price on amazon
100%

Dickies Moisture Control Crew Socks Review

  • Keep feet dry
  • Contain ventilation channels
  • Reinforced heel and toe
Check price on amazon
100%

Dickies Mens Cushion Crew Review

  • Half Cushioned Sole
  • Contains Reinforced Toe and Heel
  • Elegant Design
Check price on amazon
94%

Wigwam Cool Lite Hiker Pro Review

  • Have a moisture control system
  • Seamless toe closure
  • Both the leg and sole portions are cushioned
  • Breathable mesh panel
Check price on amazon
90%

Wigwam Men's Low Sock Review

  • Breathable mesh panel
  • Doesn’t contain cotton
  • Comes with a 2-year performance guarantee
  • Machine washable
Check price on amazon
90%

Wigwam Men's At Work Review

  • Made in the USA
  • Contains Wool
  • Fully cushioned footbed
  • Has Odor Guard
Check price on amazon
84%

Bonjour 4 Pairs Review

  • Contains Grip Zones and Extra Cushioning
  • Ankle Support and Shin Bone protection
  • Long hose with a comfortable stretch
  • Machine washable
Check price on amazon
82%

Bridgedale Merinofusion Review

  • Contains Grip Zones and Extra Cushioning
  • Ankle Support and Shin Bone protection
  • Long hose with a comfortable stretch
  • Machine washable
Check price on amazon

Frequently asked questions

What are Work Socks?

Work socks are typically cushioned with their length ranging from that of crew to over-the-calf. They provide the necessary support, warmth, comfort, and protection to let you make it through a hard day at work without any foot pain.

Also known as reinforced socks, the strength and breathability of work socks complement the same of steel-toe work boots. They consist of heavier weaves which, by reinforcing high-impact areas of your feet, provide it maximum protection.

 

What are the advantages and disadvantages of work socks?

Advantages

  • They are strong and breathable and complement steel-toe work boots
  • They target the high-impact areas of your feet to provide the maximum protection
  • Most work socks are padded to provide your feet with a soft yet sturdy support
  • They consist of a compression arch to stabilize the arch of your feet
  • The best work socks are odor-free and keep your foot’s smell in control

Disadvantages

  • They are anything but cheap.

 

What to look for when choosing Work Socks?

You need to keep the following factors in mind while choosing work socks:

Sock Fabric

There are four fabrics which are mostly used in socks – either alone or in combination with the other three. They include Merino Wool, Acrylic, Cotton, Nylon, and Spandex. Starting with the Merino wool – while its thickness makes it a perfect antidote to winter – its breathability means you can also use Merino Wool in summer conditions. Mostly, hikers and backpackers prefer Merino Wool.

Acrylic, meanwhile, is less expensive than Merino Wool, dries quickly, and provides brilliant cushioning to ensure greater comfort. As for cotton, it is simply a NO-GO fabric if you are looking for work socks. For, cotton socks are known for accumulating sweat, which means they might cause blisters when combined with friction.

Moving on, Nylon is very rarely used without combination with other fabrics, with most work sock fabrics containing, at most, 50% nylon. Like acrylic, it dries quickly and gives strength to the socks. Finally, we have Spandex which makes the sock stretchable and easy to fit.

Sock Height

Just like Sock fabric, you get socks of four different heights on the market. They include ankle socks, quarter socks, crew socks, and over-the-calf socks. Both the ankle socks, which are the shortest, as well as the quarter socks – which are slightly taller – are recommended for biking, running, and for wearing with low-top shoes.

However, if you’re wearing taller boots or going on hiking or backpacking, choose crew socks. Lastly, if your work involves skiing, go for over-the-calf socks.

Sock Thickness

The thicker the sock, the heavier it will be, and the greater the cushioning it would provide. That said, while additional cushioning adds to their comfort, it also reduces their breathability. It means that thicker socks are poor at getting rid of sweat.

Therefore, if you’re working in summer – or your work involves bigger boots, make sure you select a sock with medium thickness. Remember, even before you check a sock’s weight for its thickness, check its fabric. For, socks with a high wool content tend to be thicker, while those with Spandex tend to be less so.

Sock-Fit

It goes without saying that socks should provide a good fit. However, better fit should not be achieved at the cost of wrinkles, friction, and toe cramping. At the same time, the heel of your sock should encapsulate snugly your heel.

More importantly, the seams of the sock – especially on the toe area – should be flat. Also, it shouldn’t rub against or pin any other part of your foot.

Sock Interior

If you want to protect your feet from your footwear’s inner material, make sure your sock has cushioning loops. They help absorb moisture, keep sweat at bay, and also protect your feet from the inner materials of your footwear.

Also, at the heel, the sock should provide extra cushioning because it is the most high-impact area of your foot. Then comes the toe area, around which the seams of your sock should be totally flat, otherwise they might cause irritation and blisters.

Sock Sole and Cuff

The bottom part of your sock is known as its sole. It should be provided with the necessary padding so that it evenly distributes your weight throughout the sock. At the same time, it should be durable to withstand pressure.

As for the cuff, it is that part of the sock which you stretch to pull your sock towards the leg. It shouldn’t contain any padding, instead, the cuff should be as elastic as possible. Otherwise, after repeated stretching, it might break down.

Odor and Abrasion Resistant

At the cost of sounding too technical, modern works socks are treated with technology that makes them odor-resistant. As a result, the sock resists odor by killing bacteria and keeps your feet fresh throughout the day.

As for abrasion, it may occur when the sock is too tight to wear, hence causing friction between itself, your shoes, and feet. Therefore, just like the case with odor, go for a sock with mentioned abrasion resistant properties.

 

What are the best work socks? Why is it the best?

The Dickies Moisture Control Crew Socks are the best work socks currently available in the market. The entire area of the socks contains ventilation channels to increase airflow throughout your feet and reduce sweating.

Also, for added stability, these socks provide arch compression support and both the heel as well as the toe of the socks are reinforced to enhance their durability.

What are the best work boot socks for summer? Why is it the best?

The Bridgedale Merinofusion socks are the best for summer. They provide over-foot ventilation to assure adequate air flow throughout the sock.

Also, they provide a soft knit cuff and Bridgedale attaches additional Lycra® to the under-arch and above-heel area of the sock to prevent it from slipping down. The same is also used in the cuff to make sure it stays up.

What are the best socks for winter? Why is it the best?

The Wigwam Men at Work are the best winter socks. Apart from containing wool to protect against freezing weather conditions, they boast a fully cushioned footbed and an odor guard to prevent foot odor, while also taking care of Athlete’s foot.

More importantly, they have a reinforced sole and a low-profile toe closure and also provide a sticky-foot elastic leg.

What are the best socks for hiking? Why is it the best?

The Wigwam Cool Lite Hike Pro are the best socks for hiking. That is, because, they have a Ultimax moisture control system which dispenses moisture and keeps your feet cool.

They also have a seamless toe closure to prevent friction and reduce the chances of blisters. Also, both the leg as well as the sole portion of these socks are cushioned.

What are the best socks for running? Why is it the best?

The Wigwam Men’s Low Socks are the best for running. In addition to being manufactured in the US, they contain a breathable mesh panel and are lay low. Also, they come with a 2-year performance guarantee and are also machine washable.

What are the best socks for skiing? Why is it the best?

The Bonjour 4 Pairs are the best socks for skiing. Relying on a combination of cotton, elastane, and polyester, they feature grip zones, extra cushioning, and ankle support. They also provide shin bone protection by giving padded in that area.