How Many Socks Should I Own and Why are They Important

Socks are great for your feet and your shoes. Therefore, you should always wear socks with shoes. In addition, you should wash your socks after every use. In this post, we will answer your question – How many socks should I own and even do some math to come to the number.

Many people are on the fence about wearing socks all the time, especially with casual wear or during the summer. We tend to wear socks only with formal attire at work or black-tie events. Of course, we also wear socks at the gym. But here’s a question: how many socks should you own and when should you wear them?

The number of sock pairs you own depends on your lifestyle. Based on that, it is safe to say that you should own around 15-25 pairs of socks! Sounds too much? It’s not – because there is no reason or occasion to skip wearing socks. Honestly, socks can be the best friends of your feet and your shoes. 

Keep reading to find out more!

How many socks should you own?

How many socks should I own

Most of us have a fallout with socks once we cross the age of regular gym classes in school. Of course, socks make their way back into our lives when we step into the professional world – with occasional encounters at weddings, graduations, bar mitzvahs, and others. But as adults, it’s ideal to own 15-25 pairs of socks.

A lot of people have the habit of not wearing socks at all. Then some repeatedly wear the same pair of socks, keeping the unwashed socks stuck inside their shoes. But both are unhealthy habits. You must wash your socks after every use – but washing them too frequently can destroy them!   

Going to work, working out in the gym, attending special events, enjoying a hike – for every activity, you should have a set of socks. You can even wear them when you’re relaxing, enjoying a casual outing, enjoying the winter chills, or even while sleeping. That explains why you should own multiple socks!

Let’s break it up for you:

  1. If you work five days a week, you should own a pair for each day, i.e., five pairs. 
  2. If you work out five days a week, you will need another five pairs of socks.
  3. For date nights, then line-drys, hikes, and more, you will need another 5-8 pairs. 
  4. If you like to wear socks while sleeping, that’s an extra seven pairs of socks.    

Now you know why you need so many socks! That’s because you should avoid wearing the same pair without washing it after using it once. Assuming you’ll purchase average-priced socks, do your laundry once a week, and want your socks to last for 6-12 months, your sock stock adds up to 15-25 pairs.

This depends on your lifestyle. For example, you will need fewer socks if you don’t work out that often or work from home. But if you are a regular sock user, as you should be, shouldn’t you put quality over quantityUnfortunately, when it comes to socks? Wouldn’t it make more sense just a few need-based pairs of socks? 

If you want to own fewer socks, you will need to spend more time cleaning, even for regular use. That’s because you must wash your sweaty, dirty socks after every use. But if you are okay with regular laundry runs, you can choose to invest in high-quality socks that won’t get destroyed by frequent washes.  

It may seem more sensible to own fewer socks of long-lasting materials, which you can wear, wash, and repeat, instead of investing the same amount of money in buying a drawer of socks. But remember that the quality of the socks might still deteriorate faster than you’d expect due to washing them too often.   

So, even if you invest in socks made of durable material, it’s likely you will need to replace them with new pairs now and then. It would be best to remember that fewer socks would mean fewer options for designs and purposes. So, while cheap socks are useless, investing in multiple pairs is wise.

Why do you need socks?

How many socks should I own

Socks go with almost every kind of attire – from formal office wear to winter wear at home, from football practice outfit to cute and sensuous date night look. But you might think that this is supposed to be a personal style. Socks might be fashionable – but they do not have to go with your style, right?

Whether or not socks blend well with your sense of style is one thing. But if you have been skipping socks, even while wearing closed-toe shoes, think again! Socks are suitable for your shoes. But more importantly, they are great for your feet. Skipping them can lead to many skin and health problems. 

  • Cold Feet

Socks are a must during the winter months. Whether you are outside or nestled in your sofa: socks can keep your feet warm and comfy. If you live in an icy region, socks can even prevent frostbite.  Especially the ones made of wool, fleece, terry cloth, and other materials are perfect for insulation.   

  • Moisture-Related Problems

You will be surprised to know that each of your feet has 125,000 sweat glands! That’s why our feet swear (and smell) so much! But socks absorb the sweat from your feet, preventing the moisture from causing problems like blisters, germs, ringworms, foot odor, athlete’s foot, diabetic ulcers, and more. 

  • Pain and Blood Clots

In addition to traditional socks, you can find therapeutic socks like diabetic socks, compression socks, and gel socks that work perfectly for your overall health. They boost blood circulation, prevent blood clots, leg fatigue, lateral or downward reflux of blood, corn, stress, pain, injuries, and do more!    

Simply put, it’s not only a good idea to put on socks but also highly recommended. Your feet are vulnerable in many ways, and socks can give protection to them. Plus, they create a padded layer for the comfort of your feet. Finally, they prevent shoes from becoming the vessel of sweat, germs, stains, and odor. 

When should you wear socks?

When we talk about innerwear, we rarely think about socks. But honestly, socks are as essential as all other undergarments, and you should wear them just as often. But can you wear socks – and are they fashionable? There are different types of socks to match your outfit – as well as those that stay invisible! 

The first thing to note is that socks are a must with shoes that have closed toes. If you go barefoot in closed-toe shoes, the sweat collecting in the shoes will invariably cause skin problems, germs, blood circulation problems, and more. The result can be nasty shoes and nastier feet that you’ll have to hide.  

When we talk about closed-toe shoes, it could be for any location – office, yoga class, dancing lessons, hiking trails, cafes, theme parks, or anywhere else you can think of. Depending on your style and the type of outfit, you can choose dressy, fun, or sporty socks – or those that are entirely hidden.

Suppose you love to show off socks, pairs of various lengths – from ankles to thighs – in different colors and patterns. Then some stockings or pantyhose look classy if you wear them right. But if you’re not a socks fan, choose liner socks or half socks. Half-toe socks or boot socks can also fit the right shoes.

But when is it a good idea to let your feet get some air? Though socks look good at any time of the day, nighttime outings and dates might be a good time to go without socks. You can also skip socks if you wear strappy heels, sporty sandals, or foot-baring shoes, though they pair well with specific socks, too.   

So, while socks should be considered a necessity to maintain the health and hygiene of your feet and your shoes, they can also look fashionable. For different outfits and events, you must choose the right socks. However, if you’re still not convinced that you’re a sock person, you can select invisible ones.      

Sleeping with your socks on?

Many people love to wear socks at home and while sleeping. Some people do it because they feel cold and prefer to stay warm by wearing woolen, hand-knitted socks, or leg warmers. Others put on some foot cream or medicines for cracks or corn and wear soft socks or gel socks to moisturize their feet. 

Others hate the idea of wearing socks at night. You may love wearing socks in general and still hate to wear them at home. Or you may be afraid to wear them all night. Many theories define the pros and cons of wearing socks at home, especially when you sleep. 

So should you or should you not wear socks while sleeping? Let’s find out!

Advantages of Wearing Socks While Sleeping:

  • Your feet will feel warm and comfy.
  • If you sweat, your socks will absorb it. 
  • They can keep your feet soft and moisturized. 
  • They keep foot medicines and cream in place.
  • They often prevent hot flashes in women.
  • They prevent circulation loss from Raynaud’s disease.
  • They increase the chances of achieving orgasm.  

Disadvantages of Wearing Socks While Sleeping:

  • Tight socks can reduce blood circulation. 
  • Some materials may lead to infection. 
  • Thick socks can make your body hot. 
  • They can make you uncomfortable.
  • They can trap sweat and cause hygiene issues.

If you look at the pros and cons of wearing socks at night carefully, you’ll understand that it is possible to avoid the disadvantages of sleeping with your socks on. You need to ensure that they are not too tight and the material is suitable for the temperature in your bedroom. Also, make sure to wash them daily. 

If you live in a scorching place, wearing socks at night may not be a great idea. You can, however, go with light cotton socks for the night to soak up moisture and sweat. If moisturization is the only reason you want to wear socks, you can put on gel or silicone socks for a few hours and sleep barefoot.    

Socks during Hiking and Backpacking

Backpacking and hiking trips mean you will be on your feet for several hours, possibly with your feet inside your shoes. Socks are essential for such trips to keep your feet dry and provide cushioning for your feet so that you feel comfortable. So remember to pack sufficient socks during such a trip. 

For a one-day trip, it’s ideal for carrying 2-3 pairs of socks. It’s a good idea to change your socks throughout the day, which is why you will need two pairs. On the other hand, the third pair can be a backup if one of the other pairs gets soiled or wet. An extra pair won’t add much weight to your backpack.    

What about multi-day trips, though? You wouldn’t want to burden your rucksack – and yet, you must not under-pack when it comes to socks and undergarments. But the calculation is simple! Take two pairs for each day – and add 1-2 extra pairs as your backup for the whole trip, depending on its total duration.  

Make sure to choose high-performance or multi-layer socks so that they provide the perfect padding, reduce friction, and prevent blisters and pain. One of the most popular materials for this purpose is wool. It can wick moisture and keep your feet warm. Plus, it’s thick, soft, warm, and comfortable!

There are different types of woolen socks, and they differ in thickness. However, if you don’t own them, you can choose to wear two pairs of cotton or synthetic socks simultaneously. In that case, you’ll need to add twice the number of socks, i.e., 4 socks for each day and 2-4 additional pairs for the entire trip.  

If you’re going for two layers of socks, wear thin liners first, especially if your trail is in a warm region. They help absorb moisture and reduce friction, thus preventing blisters. Thin neoprene liners work great during long hikes. If your feet are already blistered or highly blister-prone, you might need to bandage.    

How long do a pair last?

How many socks should I own

Once you get used to wearing certain pairs of socks, you start feeling comfortable in the way the fabric feels against your skin, right? Even the elastic band starts to fit your legs perfectly. But at one point, the comfortable socks cross the barrier of being familiar and become threadbare and worn out, with holes. 

While these socks feel cozy, they can be an embarrassment. If you wear and wash a pair of socks once every week, expect them to remain in good condition for 6-12 months. Woolen and synthetic socks may last even longer, but wearing and washing them too frequently can be destructive even for quality socks. 

To extend the life of socks, skip the washer and dryer. Instead, hand-wash them in cold water. Then, line-dry the socks – but if that’s not an option, put them in a laundry bag and tumble-dry the socks at the lowest temperature. Make sure to turn them inside out while washing and drying every pair of socks you own.

Proper storage is also crucial. Don’t roll them in a ball to avoid stretching the fabric or the cuffs. Fold them gently, instead.  Your sock care regime should not involve bleach or chemicals. It would be best if you also remembered not to iron your socks. In simple words, all things harsh and hot can destroy your socks.

Even after taking good care, your socks will eventually find holes and loose cuffs. That’s when you should replace the old pair. Unfortunately, it is easy to ignore small holes until you develop blisters, calluses, or other problems. Plus, holes in your socks might be a little embarrassing – and so are socks that keep slipping down. 

Stains, discoloration, and fading are signs that your socks have become old and need to be replaced. Old socks often develop lint at the bottom or get stretched out at the heels or toes. Such socks may rub against your skin and cause discomfort, if not blisters – and they certainly don’t look good.   

How to keep track of your socks

Now that you know how important it is to own enough pairs of socks, you are likely to go shopping for new socks or look for ones you already own. The latter is when you may face a new challenge – as keeping track of multiple pairs of socks can be tricky. You’ll end up with single socks without a match. 

Uncoordinated, unpaired socks can be an absolute nightmare, right? There’s also a chance of losing socks when you stack away multiple pairs of socks together instead of wearing them or keeping them paired together.  The best thing is to buy a sock organizer for your drawer. These help keep each pair separate.

What about washing, though? If you’re going to wash and dry multiple pairs in a single go, put them in separate laundry sock bags. Or, if you do not want to invest in 15-25 bags, you can tie each pair with rubber bands. Then, once the pairs are dry, you can fold each pair together and put them in the organizer.    

Final Words

Most people ignore socks and do not give them the same importance as they do to regular undergarments. However, it would be best if you remembered that socks are essential for maintaining the health of your feet. In addition, it would be best to always wash the socks after wearing them once as they get sweaty and smelly.

It’s a good idea to invest in quality socks, but even those will get worn out if you wear and wash them too often. You could say that one can never own too many socks. You need to take care of them and keep them in an organizer to ensure that you don’t lose them – and find the right pair, wherever you go!