Remember the first time Forest Gump meets Lieutenant Dan? He tells Forest and Bubba: “There is one item of G.I. gear that can be the difference between a live grunt and a dead grunt. Socks! Cushion, sole, O.D. green. Try and keep your feet dry when we’re out humpin’. I want you boys to remember to change your socks wherever we stop.”
Now, I’m not in the swamps of Vietnam where “The Mekong will eat a grunt’s feet right off his legs”, so changing my socks regularly will not make the difference between life and death. However, wearing sustainable high quality socks can contribute to a more pleasant and comfortable day.
I was unaware of the existence of these higher sock species until seven years ago, during a Sinterklaas celebration with my family. I got my present and poem from one of my aunts and she gave me exactly one pair of socks. I asked for socks, but I have to admit, I’d aspected to get them in plural with the gift budget we agreed on.
I didn’t know socks with a price tag above 5 euros even existed. My feet didn’t know what hit them when I tried on the Falke pair my aunt gave me. The softness and sturdy support was like nothing they’d ever experienced.
You would think from then on I’d got more sense than to randomly grab a 5-pack of socks at the cash register at the supermarket or the Monki. But I didn’t. I kept on purchasing the same shapeless shitty socks.
Take care of your feet and try not to do anything stupid! Always change your socks!
The only pair that has survived the last seven years are the socks my aunt gave me. They are still perfect and comfortable as ever; the silver lining in my drawer that is filled with mismatched, shapeless, holed and snagged socks.
A week ago I decided to put an end to this misery. Why would I invest in fair, comfortable and quality clothing and exclude a part of my body that carries me everywhere? Don’t my feet deserve to be treated the same way as my arms, legs and belly? So I’ve bought seven pairs of Falke socks in different categories: sports, home wear, decorative, black basics and ankle socks. They wil replace my most uncomfortable and worn out socks, which I’ll use as dust rag. (Read this article why I don’t bring them to a textile recycle bin).
Why invest in good socks?
- Good socks are like a good cup of coffee
I hate sounding like a Pinterest picture, but happiness can truly be found in the little things. A few minutes of silence in the morning, a soft warm bathrobe, freshly washed bed linen, a good cup of coffee, and yes, comfortable socks. Low quality socks slip down, scratch or chafes on your skin. You’re always aware you’re wearing them. Investing in something simple like quality socks contributes to a happier life.
- Happy (and healthy) feet
If shoes were Batman, socks would be Robin. I read this quote on a website that sells hiking boots, so all credits to Boot World. “When a sock isn’t distorted or shapeless and the pattern, knit, and yarns have been designed intelligently, it will not only improve foot comfort, but also the fit of any shoe. Think of how comfortable a great fitting, tailor-made pair of pants is compared to an inexpensive pair that you bought off the rack; the same goes for socks.”
Quality socks contain an invisible toe seam to avoid the irritating friction from the seam rubbing on your toes. You should feel a little cushion and bounce. Also, they stay wrapped around your feet thanks to materials like Spandex (about 5%) in the fiber mix. This prevents socks from getting baggy and saggy.
For my athletic socks I chose for a pair with humidity regulation and cooling effect, which makes them ideal for heavy work or a long run. This may sound like marketing nonsense, but it really makes a difference. It’s worth spending a few more euros for happy and healthy feet.
- It saves money (and the environment) in the long run
Talking about euros. You can get great socks for about 8 to 20 euros per pair. Specialized designs and materials, required for hiking and running, are pricier than regular cotton socks. I realize this might be the double amount of money you’ll normally spend on socks, but personally, I find the benefits more than worth it. And in the long run it will save you money. Think about all the cheap socks you had to buy and toss away every half year or year. As I mentioned before, my Falke socks are still going strong after seven years. Talk about a money saver! And think about all the materials, packaging and shipping this pair has spared. Mother Earth and your feet will thank you for your investment in long lasting and high quality socks.
Which brands sell high quality sustainable socks
I normally only write about brands that I’ve actually worn. In this case, the only fair and quality brand I’ve tried so far is Falke, but Google told me that the following brands are definitely worth a try:
Please, share your favorite brand of socks with us, so we can continue keeping our feet happy.