The world's most in-depth and scientific reviews of outdoor gear

Danish Endurance Unisex Merino Wool Review

A boot-length merino-wool blend for those on a budget.
Best Buy Award
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Price:  $30 List | $26.95 at Amazon
Pros:  Inexpensive, comfortable, great thermoregulation
Cons:  Thinner materials, deforms when wet
Manufacturer:   Danish Endurance
By Amber King ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Aug 26, 2019
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69
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#8 of 10
  • Comfort - 25% 8
  • Wicking and Breathability - 25% 8
  • Warmth - 20% 7
  • Durability - 20% 5
  • Drying Speed - 10% 5

Our Verdict

On a budget? The Danish Unisex Merino Wool Sock is an excellent boot-length sock that kept our tester trucking for miles on the trail. The unique blend of fabrics provides an amazing combo of breathability and comfort while playing out on the trail. It's also super affordable! As one of our highest value contenders, we are surprised to see very little wear and tear even after 60 miles of testing. Our testers love the full-boot length that is compatible with both hiking boots and shoes. While it's great for moderate temperatures, it's not our top recommendation for super hot weather as the material is quite insulating and can't regulate at this higher temperature maximal. If you're looking for a great merino-wool sock that offers superior breathability and value, this is our top recommendation. It earns our Best Buy Award and is best for those seeking a sock that they can trust on a day hike or shorter backpacking mission.


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Pros Inexpensive, comfortable, great thermoregulationDurable, comfortable, wide temperature regulation, versatile, fittedGreat thermoregulation, incredibly comfortable, durabilityBreathable, comfortable, well-fitted, thin materials, merino-wool blend, no itchIncredible durability, quick to dry, accommodates a liner, comfortable
Cons Thinner materials, deforms when wetNot ideal for hot temperatures, tall cut not best for allSlow to dry, expensiveLacks warmth in cold temperaturesLoose fit, lacks compression paneling, loses wicking capabilities in cold weather
Bottom Line A boot-length merino-wool blend for those on a budget.An all-time favorite meant for long days on the trail.A hiking sock that performs well through all seasons for any distance.This merino-wool blend hiker is breathable and thin and performs well during high and low intensity activities.This high value sock is a synthetic full-length midweight sock with exemplary durability and drying speed.
Rating Categories Unisex Merino Wool Darn Tough Hiker Full Cushion Smartwool PhD Pro Light Crew Light Hiker Micro Crew Wigwam Hiking Outdoor Pro
Comfort (25%)
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
7
Wicking And Breathability (25%)
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
8
Warmth (20%)
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
7
Durability (20%)
10
0
5
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
8
Drying Speed (10%)
10
0
5
10
0
8
10
0
6
10
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6
10
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8
Specs Unisex Merino Wool Darn Tough Hiker... Smartwool PhD Pro... Light Hiker Micro... Wigwam Hiking...
Material 33% Merino Wool, 33% Acrylic, 33% Polyamide, 1% Elastane 66% merino wool, 32% nylon, 2% lycra spandex 62% Merino Wool, 36% Nylon, 2% Elastane 40% merino wool, 56% nylon, 4% lycra spandex 41% polypropylene, 34% acrylic, 23% stretch nylon, 1% stretch polyester, 1% spandex
Sock Category Midweight Midweight Lightweight Lightweight Midweight
Length Mid-calf High calf Lower calf High ankle Lower calf
Guarantee Policy n/a Lifetime guarantee 2 year satisfaction guarantee Lifetime guarantee 2 year guarantee

Our Analysis and Test Results

Performance Comparison


This full-length boot sock features a merino wool-blend that kept our feet comfortable through all sorts of conditions.
This full-length boot sock features a merino wool-blend that kept our feet comfortable through all sorts of conditions.

Comfort


Consisting of 33% Merino Wool, 33% Acrylic, 33% Polyamide, 1% Elastane, this mid-calf length sock is a strange blend of synthetic and merino wool materials. It is compatible with both hiking boots and shoes making it ideal for any kind of hike. The foot is fairly cushioned with areas of compression paneling around the arch and calf that prevents it from falling down while adventuring. While it's not as a comfortable as some of our higher scoring contenders, our testers thought it did a great job on day hikes and overnight backpacking trips. The fit is unisex.


While the sock does have a cushioned underfoot, it was much thinner than most cushioned socks out there. The materials are soft against the skin, offering cozy comfort on colder days. The fit is somewhat specific with areas of compression, but we were unimpressed by how the fit changed with moisture. While hiking through a river, our foot got completely water-logged, becoming misshapen and bunched at the toe. However, once dry, it returned to its original shape, which helped its structure. While this sock is comfortable, the fit is questionable in all conditions.

Compatible with hiking boots  this full length sock provides additional warmth through the calves.
Compatible with hiking boots, this full length sock provides additional warmth through the calves.

Wicking and Breathability


With its synthetic materials, the Danish Unisex Wool Sock is breathable and wicks well. The integration of the breathing panels on the top of the foot and around the front of the leg provides sufficient breathability on warmer days.


The integration of the synthetic fibers provides superior wicking capabilities in comparison to most merino-wool blends out there. If you're somebody that struggles with sweaty feet, this sock might be a good option as it is able to keep the foot quite dry in sweaty conditions. Given the thinner design, it's more breathable overall. In a warm weather test, we wore two different socks on our feet, and the Danish proved to provide better wicking than breathability overall. Even in cold temperatures, it retains its wicking capabilities to keep feet dry and happy. As a result, it's recommended for warm summer hikes and cooler winter days.

Comparing the comfort and fit of two different sock options on a warm hike.   In the end  we determine the Danish Endurance to have superior wicking capabilities and breathability.
Comparing the comfort and fit of two different sock options on a warm hike. In the end, we determine the Danish Endurance to have superior wicking capabilities and breathability.

Warmth


This sock offers middle of the road warmth performing well when both wet and dry. Unfortunately, because it integrates more synthetic material than wool, which isn't as warm, it's not a recommendation for situations where you would find yourself standing around or sitting in cold weather. Though, it's perfect for moderate temperatures throughout all four seasons.


This warmth comes in both the materials and the length of the socks. When day hiking and camping we experienced a wide range of temperatures in the high 90s (F) to just below freezing. When on the move, it performs just fine, regulating temperature well. When wet, the wool does a good job of insulating to keep the feet happy and healthy in, once again, moderate temperatures. Overall, it provides the warmth you'd expect from a mid-weight sock, but there are warmer options out there.

A look at the cushioning underfoot and the breathable panels located throughout.
A look at the cushioning underfoot and the breathable panels located throughout.

Durability


After roughly 60 miles of hiking, running, and straight-up adventuring, we are surprised to learn that this sock is fairly durable. We did notice a little pilling around the foot of the sock with some slight cushion compaction, but no serious wear and tear. We've been wearing this sock for over two years and made this consistent observation.


That said, when perusing the online reviews of this sock, multiple users have claimed that there are durability issues. Some observing holes after just a few hikes, others with sizing. In our experience, this sock hasn't seen any of these issues. Though, in the coming months, we intend to continue our testing and will update you on our results as we continue this process. Overall, our take is that it is relatively durable at a low cost.

A look at the wear and tear after about 60 miles of use.
A look at the wear and tear after about 60 miles of use.

Drying Speed


As a quick-drying sock, the Danish Unisex Wool Sock is okay for wet weather but not the perfect option out there. Yes, it will keep you warm when wet, but despite the synthetic fiber make-up that integrates just a little merino wool, it's not the fastest to dry.


In our drying speed tests, this sock dried in about 90 minutes, putting it at a place that sits about average in comparison to the rest. It absorbed 176% of its weight in water when soaked and wrung out, making it a fairly absorptive sock when agitated. While on the trail, we noticed that it actually had better results. In a light rain, the material beads and repels the rain, with the sock drying relatively quickly when it's hot outside. Regardless, we still deem it fit for wet weather, but if quick drying is what you need, there are better options out there.

Looking to do a stream crossing? An insulating wool sock like the Danish Unisex Merino Wool is key to ensure your feet stay warm when dry and wet.
Looking to do a stream crossing? An insulating wool sock like the Danish Unisex Merino Wool is key to ensure your feet stay warm when dry and wet.

Value


On a tight budget and need a high-value sock? This is one of our top recommendations! It's one of the best values in this review. Even though it doesn't score as high as other performers, it still does everything you need. It will keep your feet warm when it's cold outside, provide sufficient cushioning and comfort underfoot while offering great temperature regulation. All other socks in this review are substantially more expensive with only a little more to give when it comes to performance. If you're seeking a deal, this is a great option.

Conclusion


The Danish Unisex Wool Sock features a unique synthetic-merino blend that does a great job wicking away moisture and drying out on the trail. While it's not our Top Pick for comfort or warmth, it certainly does the trick for backpacking adventures and day hikes. It's our Best Buy Award winner because of its good performance at a super low price.

This mid-calf merino-wool blend hiking sock is quick to dry  warm  and provides a great value.
This mid-calf merino-wool blend hiking sock is quick to dry, warm, and provides a great value.


Amber King