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The 6 Best Socks for Women of 2024

We tested the best pairs from Hanes, Stance, Darn Tough, Champion, Bombas, and more to keep your feet happy every day
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Best Socks Women Review (We tested the best women's socks on the market so you could find the best pair to fit your needs)
We tested the best women's socks on the market so you could find the best pair to fit your needs
Credit: Whitney Clark
By Whitney Clark ⋅ Review Editor
Monday April 22, 2024

Looking for comfortable socks to will keep your feet happy? We researched 20+ promising options before choosing the 10 best women's socks to put through extensive side-by-side testing. From long walks and the gym to dinner parties and lounging around home, we wore each pair in a variety of everyday scenarios. We tested them to see how they held up to wear and tear, if they were breathable, how comfortable they were, and yes, how they smelled. We looked at each pair's style and versatility because we think that fashion and function can go hand in hand. With so many products to choose from, many of which appear very similar, it can be challenging to figure out which are the best for your feet.

Don't see what you're looking for here? If you prefer different sizes and styles of socks, we've also tested the best men's socks around. Need a little more out of your footwear? We've tested dozens of specific performance-based socks, like these top-rated hiking socks, the best running socks, and even premier ski socks. We've also tested the best walking shoes for keeping your feet comfortable.

Editor's Note: This article was updated on April 22, 2024, to provide alternative options to our award picks and to shed more light on our testing process.

Top 10 Product Ratings

Displaying 1 - 5 of 10
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Awards Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award Top Pick Award   
Price $16.00 List
$15.99 at Amazon
$16.00 List
$14.99 at Amazon
$23.95 at AmazonCheck Price at Amazon$22 List
$14.95 at Amazon
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Pros Stylish, comfortable, offers good coverageComfortable, breathableLifetime warranty, comfortable, durable, breathableComfortable, thick material, soft, good cushionThick, comfortable, soft against your skin
Cons Expensive, fabric does stretch outSocks retain odor more than mostExpensive, warmMay be too thick and warm for hot weather, expensiveMight be too warm for some, heel tab sticks out too much over shoe
Bottom Line This stylish crew cut is comfortable, breathable, and offers nice coverage up your calfComfortable for all-day wear, these breathe well and can easily transition from athletic wear to a more casual outfit with their ankle cutBoth extremely soft and comfortable, these durable socks are backed by a lifetime warrantyCushioned, comfortable, and supports your feet with a unique honeycomb support system constructionThick and cushioned, these are great for colder weather
Rating Categories Dickies Dri-tech Cr... Saucony Performance... Darn Tough Coolmax... Bombas Original Ank... CelerSport Low Cut...
Comfort and All Day Performance (40%)
9.0
8.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
Breathability (20%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
6.0
Odor Retention (20%)
8.0
7.0
7.0
7.0
8.0
Style and Versatility (20%)
7.0
7.0
5.0
7.0
6.0
Specs Dickies Dri-tech Cr... Saucony Performance... Darn Tough Coolmax... Bombas Original Ank... CelerSport Low Cut...
Material 71% cotton, 27% polyester, 2% spandex 98% polyester, 2% spandex 39% nylon, 34% Coolmax polyester, 19% acrylic, 5% polyester, 3% lycra spandex 76% cotton (Supima), 21% polyester, 3% elastane 88.3% combed cotton, 10.7% polyester, 1% spandex
Sock height Mid Calf Low Ankle Mid Calf Low Ankle Low Ankle
Level of cushioning Midweight Midweight Heavyweight Midweight Midweight
Number of pairs in pack 6 8 1 1 6


Best Overall Socks for Women


Dickies Dri-tech Crew Multipack - Women's


82
OVERALL
SCORE
  • Comfort and All Day Performance 9.0
  • Breathability 8.0
  • Odor Retention 8.0
  • Style and Versatility 7.0
Material: 71% cotton, 27% polyester, 2% spandex | Height: Crew
REASONS TO BUY
Breathable
Comfortable fabric
Stylish and cool patterns
REASONS TO AVOID
Tight against calf muscle
Stretch out over time

If you are looking for the right combination of style and function, then the Dickies Dri-tech Crew is an ideal choice. The cotton/polyester/spandex blend feels soft against the skin and yields a perfect stretch. Although the Dickies Dri-tech is not a running-specific sock, it breathes really well and dries out quickly, making it a good choice for hiking or running. It utilizes moisture-wicking technology and has ventilation channels engineered to increase air circulation during exertion. In addition, we liked the design options and found them to be both fashionable and versatile.

After months of wearing the Dri-tech, we noticed the fabric started stretching out slightly and losing some of its form. This is typical of cotton models and was common among most products we tested. For folks with large muscular calves, these may be too tight and uncomfortable to wear for hours on end. Overall, the Dri-tech was one of our favorites because of its high performance across the board. We also love the Darn Tough Coolmax Micro Crew Cushion for hiking. They're pricier, but they have a lifetime warranty.

socks women - the women&#039;s dickies dri-tech crew is stylish, easily transitioning...
The women's Dickies Dri-tech Crew is stylish, easily transitioning from the town to the trail.
Credit: Tad McCrea

Best Bang for the Buck


Champion No Show - Women's


64
OVERALL
SCORE
  • Comfort and All Day Performance 7.0
  • Breathability 7.0
  • Odor Retention 5.0
  • Style and Versatility 6.0
Material: 97% polyester, 2% spandex, 1% other | Height: Low ankle
REASONS TO BUY
Classic look
Inexpensive
Comfortable for all-day wear
REASONS TO AVOID
Stretch out after multiple wears
Hold odor more than most

The Champion No Show is made from predominately polyester with a small amount of spandex to give it that stretchy yet snug fit. This inexpensive multipack offers a lot of bang for your buck and performed well during our testing. It is a great choice for moving in warm conditions as the thin material breathes well and dries out quickly after getting wet. Its low ankle cut is barely noticeable in shoes, making it a versatile choice from the gym to the office. The material is also more durable than we expected, considering its thinness, making it a high-value product.

One disadvantage with the Champion No Show is that the thin fabric doesn't offer much cushioning for extended pounding on the pavement. As part of our testing process, we wore them for several days in a row without washing them and noticed they were by far the smelliest socks we reviewed. Polyester materials notoriously hold onto odor more than cotton, so we mostly blame the fabric. Still, the Champion No Show is an affordable and solid option for activewear or general day-to-day use. If you would like to upgrade to a more luxurious ankle sock, the Bombas Original Ankle Socks are soft, super comfy, and provide great cushioning.

socks women - the champion no show has a classic style and is comfortable for...
The Champion No Show has a classic style and is comfortable for all-day wear.
Credit: Whitney Clark

Best for Breathability


Saucony Performance Heel Tab Athletic Socks


78
OVERALL
SCORE
  • Comfort and All Day Performance 8.0
  • Breathability 9.0
  • Odor Retention 7.0
  • Style and Versatility 7.0
Material: 98% polyester, 2% spandex | Height: Ankle
REASONS TO BUY
Comfortable
Breathable and dry quickly
Durable
REASONS TO AVOID
Retain odor

Looking for a do-it-all everyday-turned-running option that goes almost unnoticed on your feet? The Saucony Performance Heel Tab Athletic was a top performer and scored highly across all our testing metrics. This model is very comfortable, fits like a glove on your feet, is extremely durable, and dries quickly. It's a great choice for moderate exercise but also transitions well to casual outfits with its nearly invisible low ankle height. The heel tab helps keep the material from sliding down into your shoe, and they come in a variety of colors so you can match them with your favorite outfit.

Although we like polyester for its durability and breathability, it does have its downfalls — odor retention is one of them. This sock got stinkier than most, as polyester is notorious for holding onto odors compared to its cotton cousins. If you're looking for a pair that doesn't latch onto odors as much, the Dickies Dri-tech Crew was one of our top performers in our odor retention testing.

The Saucony Heel Tab is breathable and dries quickly.
Credit: Whitney Clark

Best for Comfy Cushioning


Darn Tough Coolmax Micro Crew Cushion


76
OVERALL
SCORE
  • Comfort and All Day Performance 9.0
  • Breathability 8.0
  • Odor Retention 7.0
  • Style and Versatility 5.0
Material: 39% nylon, 34% Coolmax polyester, 19% acrylic, 5% polyester, 3% lycra spandex | Height: Crew
REASONS TO BUY
Durable with a lifetime warranty
Comfortable material
Good for cold weather
REASONS TO AVOID
Expensive
Not very versatile

Darn Tough has a history of making great socks out of durable material and backing them with a lifetime warranty. The Darn Tough Coolmax Micro Crew Cushion is one of the most comfortable socks we had the pleasure of testing. Their thick material makes them our preferred choice for activities where we are on our feet all day and need that extra support. They have soft terry loops underfoot and the most padding of any of the products in our lineup. The Coolmax Micro Crew is engineered to move moisture out and keep your feet cool even while sweating, and the synthetic material dries quickly.

The biggest downside to these socks is the cost. They're pricey, but you can return them and get a new pair if they wear out. Made from thicker material, the Darn Tough Micro Crew may not be the best pick for hot summer days and is better suited for colder temperatures. Considering everything, the Darn Tough Coolmax is a high-quality and high-comfort option. If you don't want to spend so much on socks, the Champion No Show are quite comfy and come at an attractive price.

socks women - the darn tough coolmax crew is soft, warm, and comfortable for...
The Darn Tough Coolmax Crew is soft, warm, and comfortable for all-day wear.
Credit: Whitney Clark

Best for Hiking


Darn Tough Hiker Full Cushion


Material: 66% Merino wool, 32% nylon, 2% lycra spandex | Height: Crew
REASONS TO BUY
Well-fitted
Exceptionally durable with a lifetime warranty
Excellent wicking capabilities
Thick padding is comfortable
REASONS TO AVOID
Not the best in hot weather

For hiking, the Darn Tough Hiker Full Cushion is our top dog. We love its thick cushioning that protects our feet on the trail. This durable sock is built to last for years of backpacking and hiking, and it's got a lifetime warranty to back it up. The crew cut works great with boots, and the material is soft and comfortable. We find them true to size and compatible with narrow or wide feet. If you need a premium hiking sock, this Darn Tough pair is the cream of the crop and our go-to for backpacking trips. We even sleep in 'em.

Unfortunately, the extra padding makes them less breathable, so they might not be the right choice for hot weather. However, they wick sweat quite well. All this aside, if you are looking for a durable, boot-ready, cool-weather sock with exceptional cushioning, the Darn Tough Hiker is the way to go. On the other hand, if your main priority is breathability, the Saucony Performance Heel Tab Athletic is the pair to get.

Read more: Darn Tough Hiker Full Cushion review

socks women - the darn tough hiker full cushion is our favorite hiking sock for...
The Darn Tough Hiker Full Cushion is our favorite hiking sock for all types of adventures. This is a great option for those seeking a versatile, all-around sock that will keep you protected on the trail.
Credit: Amber King

Best for Running


Balega Blister Resist Quarter


Material: 32% Drynamix polyester, 32% polyamide, 30% mohair, 4% microfiber, 2% elastane | Cushioning: Midweight
REASONS TO BUY
Exceptional cushioning
Ultra comfy
Breathable
Elasticized construction provides a great fit
REASONS TO AVOID
Thicker material isn't ideal for hot weather

The Balega Blister Resist Quarter is our top choice for running. Its material feels soft and comfortable against your skin, and padding is exactly where you need it. On long trail runs or hikes, your foot feels protected and cushioned from hazards like rocks and roots. The material on top of the foot is thinner and ventilated under your arch. Men and women have different styles, each with an impeccable fit. Our testers were impressed with the durability of this pair and found themselves reaching for this protective performer for trail runs from one to 100 miles in any season.

Despite how much we love the Balega Blister Resist, it might not be ideal for folks with extra-sweaty feet on hot summer days due to its mid-weight cushioning. We never felt too uncomfortable wearing them on hot days, likely due to the thermoregulatory properties of the mohair wool, but they are a little warmer than thinner socks. Still, if you need a durable, comfortable, top-notch running sock, the Blister Resist from Balega is the one we recommend above all the rest. As for those hot summer days, we suggest a more breathable option, like the Saucony Performance Heel Tab Athletic.

Read more: Balega Blister Resist Quarter review

socks women - we love the ultra comfy balega blister resist for running or long...
We love the ultra comfy Balega Blister Resist for running or long trail days.
Credit: Amber King

Compare Products

select up to 5 products to compare
Score Product Price
82
Dickies Dri-tech Crew Multipack - Women's
Best Overall Socks for Women
$16
Editors' Choice Award
78
Saucony Performance Heel Tab Athletic Socks
Best for Breathability
$16
Top Pick Award
76
Darn Tough Coolmax Micro Crew Cushion
Best for Comfy Cushioning
$24
Top Pick Award
74
Bombas Original Ankle Socks
$14
68
CelerSport Low Cut Running - Unisex
$22
64
Champion No Show - Women's
Best Bang for the Buck
$20
Best Buy Award
62
Hanes Crew Socks - Women's
$12
54
Wernies No Show Socks
$18
52
Gold Toe Texture Crew - Women's
$17
50
IDEGG No Show Socks - Unisex
$19

socks women - we tested the breathability of each pair using a diffuser to measure...
We tested the breathability of each pair using a diffuser to measure how much moisture soaked into the fabric after a specified amount of time.
Credit: Whitney Clark

How We Test Women's Socks


Socks are one of the most basic yet important items of your everyday attire. Having a comfortable medium between your foot and shoe can greatly impact your day. Comfort is key and the highest priority in our intensive testing and evaluations. We researched over 20 top sock brands before buying the most promising 10 pairs to test side by side. We wore them on long walks, out on the town, and around the house to see how they would perform in different shoes and different environments. We used a diffuser to test breathability and checked how stinky they got after multiple back-to-back days of wear. We tried them on with different outfits and asked our friends to wear them and rate their style and versatility. And we washed them and wore them on repeat to see if they could withstand the everyday abuse.

Our side-by-side comparative testing was divided into the following four metrics:
  • Comfort and All Day Performance (40% of overall score weighting)
  • Breathability (20% weighting)
  • Odor Retention (20% weighting)
  • Style and Versatility (20% weighting)

Testing the breathability of each pair scientifically.
Credit: Whitney Clark

Why You Should Trust Us


Review Editor, Whitney Clark is our lead tester for women's socks. Whitney spends much of her time walking to various cliffs and crags, climbing mountains in Patagonia, or running around dirt trails in Owen's Valley. Living in an area of the West that has extremely hot summers and shockingly cold winters, Whitney understands the value of having the right sock for the right moment. Through decades of trials and tribulations, she has learned the correlation between having a fun day and having a good pair of socks.

Testing out the Stance The Vitality Crew on a dusty morning run.
Testing out the Stance The Vitality Crew on a dusty morning run.
Three silicone strips prevent the IDEGG No Show from slipping down...
Three silicone strips prevent the IDEGG No Show from slipping down your heel.
Testing style while rocking sandals.
Testing style while rocking sandals.
We wore these socks everywhere for months to see which ones were the most comfortable, the most breathable, and the most versatile.


Analysis and Test Results


No one wants blisters from fabric rubbing against the skin on your feet, which is why we spent back-to-back days walking, running, and lounging in each pair. We wore each sock for six miles walking down a dirt trail to find which ones held up to our standards. We evaluated comfort and all-day performance, tested breathability, smelled odor retention, and examined style and versatility to rate each product comparatively and fairly.


Value


Socks are unlikely to be the piece of your wardrobe that breaks the bank. However, getting six pairs of one type for the same price as one pair of another can leave you scratching your head as to why anyone would pay double digits for one pair of socks. Well, we can tell you. The Darn Tough Coolmax have exceptional value because that high price tag comes with a lifetime guarantee. If it wears out, Darn Tough lets you return it for a new pair. On the other end of the spectrum, a less expensive but still quality product is the Champion No Show. It performed well in all of our testing and can be purchased in multipacks at an affordable price. The Saucony Performance Heel Tab also offers exceptional bang for your buck as they are available in inexpensive multipacks, are high performing, and showed little wear after miles on the trail.

socks women - we examined the craftsmanship and wear and tear of every pair we...
We examined the craftsmanship and wear and tear of every pair we tested.
Credit: Whitney Clark

Comfort and All Day Performance


Comfort reigns supreme for our feet and is the most important factor in finding a pair we're happy with. They can be cheap, fashionable, smell good, and breathable, but if they're uncomfortable, they're not a good buy. We walked for six miles of trails in every pair of socks in similar conditions to see how they performed. We lounged around home to gauge coziness and roominess. We looked at the material, stretch, and fit and analyzed how they felt on our feet.


With its combination of mostly nylon and Coolmax polyester, the Darn Tough Coolmax Crew scored highly in this metric and feels nice on your skin. It has seamless toes, leaving plenty of room to wiggle and the perfect amount of stretch. A soft terry underfoot keeps the bottom of your foot well-cushioned. The Dickies Dri-tech also felt pleasant and perfectly cushioned on our feet. We enjoyed wearing them hanging out around the house all day and on a sweaty, 5-mile run.

socks women - the bombas original ankle uses extra-long staple cotton and has a...
The Bombas Original Ankle uses extra-long staple cotton and has a cushioned footbed for ultimate comfort.
Credit: Whitney Clark

Socks with thicker material like the Bombas Original Ankle gave the bottom of our feet a nice cushion, and the ankle cut made them a good choice for use during moderate exercise like running. The Saucony Performance was another favorite with a slightly thinner material than the Bombas.

socks women - some pairs can be too bit roomy in the heel, allowing the extra...
Some pairs can be too bit roomy in the heel, allowing the extra fabric to bunch up uncomfortably.
Credit: Tad McCrea

We found the CelerSport Low Cut Running to almost be too thin for running in warm temperatures with sweaty feet. However, they are a cozy option for all-day wear at work or lounging around the house. The Champion No Show impressed us by staying firmly in place on a long 6-mile run without even starting to slip down our heels.

socks women - the bombas original ankle sock&#039;s honeycomb support system provides...
The Bombas Original Ankle sock's honeycomb support system provides comfort and function.
Credit: Whitney Clark

Breathability


Having breathable clothing is important, especially if you plan to do any exercise, have sweaty extremities, or live in a warm environment. A breathable layer should wick away moisture while you're sweating and dry out quickly so you aren't left with wet feet all day. It's important to note that the thickness of a sock doesn't necessarily tell you how breathable it is. Breathability has more to do with the type of fabric used rather than its thickness. For example, cotton is more breathable than polyester, but it absorbs moisture and stays wet longer than its polyester counterparts. The best sock usually combines these two materials, giving you the best of both worlds.


To test breathability, we wore each pair running and hiking in warm temperatures. We used a diffuser to measure how much moisture permeated through the fabric. We also timed how long each pair stayed wet in a controlled environment. Not surprisingly, the cotton socks allowed more moisture to escape but stayed wet longer. One of the best performers during our testing was the Saucony Heel Tab. Its predominately polyester fabric with ventilated mesh panels allowed maximum airflow and kept our feet cool and dry on long runs. Another high performer was the Dickies Dri-tech Crew. It is made with a combination of cotton and polyester fabrics and does an excellent job of wicking moisture and drying quickly.

We like the Champion No Show, as it's budget-friendly and an all-around good performer.
Credit: Whitney Clark

Though the Darn Tough Micro Crew is thicker than most other socks we tested, they are engineered with ventilation channels and moisture-control fibers to help with airflow. They handily kept our feet cool and dry after hours of walking around in warm temperatures. The Champion No Show saturates quickly but also dries quickly because it's so thin. The Bombas Original is made of thicker, mostly cotton fabric that pulls sweat away from your feet but also holds in extra warmth during exercise.

Odor Retention


Stinky socks can be embarrassing, and if you don't have access to a regular washer and drier, how the material smells after extensive use matters. As a natural fiber, cotton doesn't retain odor as much as synthetic polyester does, so not surprisingly, the ones that performed the best are made of mostly cotton. To test odor retention, we wore each pair for several consecutive days without washing them. Luckily for us (and our friends), most of them didn't smell too bad.


After multiple days of use without washing, we could barely detect any odor from the Dickies Dri-tech or the CelerSport Low Cut. Both pairs stayed relatively soft and didn't get that 'crunchy' feel that often happens when dirt and grime build-up.

socks women - no one likes a smelly sock.
No one likes a smelly sock.
Credit: Whitney Clark

The Bombas Original and Hanes Crew also proved to be less smelly. They're made predominately of cotton and resisted taking on strong odors even after days of use without washing. The high breathability of the Darn Tough Coolmax and Saucony contributed to both of these pairs resisting becoming too smelly after repeated wear.

socks women - after days of wearing on runs and around the house, these socks are...
After days of wearing on runs and around the house, these socks are starting to show some use.
Credit: Whitney Clark

Style and Versatility


We recognize that style is subjective, and so we asked as many of our friends and family to weigh in on each pair. We also considered each product's versatility across outfits, activities, and situations. The products that scored the highest in this metric could easily look just as good and work as well at the gym as at a casual dinner out.


The Dickies Dri-tech was a favorite for its cool patterns and color options, and it's also a super comfortable and functional sock. The Gold Toe Texture is another pair that comes in plenty of classic colors, with a casual mid-calf cut that looks good with laidback outfits.

We also really liked the Hanes Crew for its style and versatility. It's hard to go wrong with a basic white cotton sock, and this one is a tried and true product that has been around for ages. Many of the low-cut socks we tested are also quite versatile, as they barely pop out of the tops of most shoes. Those include the Bombas Original, Saucony, CelerSport, and Champion No Show with their low ankle designs, and the super-low cuts of the Wernies No Show and IDEGG No Show.

socks women - soft and cushioned, the darn tough coolmax is perfect for activities...
Soft and cushioned, the Darn Tough Coolmax is perfect for activities where you need a bit more underfoot support.
Credit: Whitney Clark

Conclusion


As small as they seem, socks are an important part of our everyday attire. Having a comfortable medium between your foot and your shoe is important and can make a big difference in your overall happiness and attitude. With thousands of similar-looking socks available, knowing which ones will work best for your feet and lifestyle can be hard. We hope our rigorous tests and careful evaluation of details have helped you find the perfect sock to keep your feet nice and happy.

Whitney Clark