7 best running socks to cushion your stride

Kelsey Chapman
Friday 16 April 2021 18:09
Wishlist
(Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Here at Wishlist, we’ve been trying to keep you abreast of some of the best trends in running equipment and clothing for a few months now. We rounded up our favorite breathable masks, showed you some great women’s and men’s running shoe options, and even sought out these great treadmills for upgrading your home gym.

We now turn our attention to the best running socks, and we’re sticking with unisex options here. Options abound, with many conveniently cut to sit even with the tops of your shoes, while others reach up to the knee and offer valuable support via compression points that prevent painful swelling and tenderness. Some are colorful, some are neutral, but all will help you put your best foot forward when lacing up for your next run.

You can trust our independent reviews. We may earn a commission from some of the retailers, but we never allow this to influence selections, which are formed from real-world testing, expert advice and our own research. This revenue helps to fund journalism across The Independent.

Ultrasoft Compression Travel Socks

We tested these out ourselves and they are absolutely as super soft as their name implies, and the support they provide during a workout is fantastic!

The NxTStop compression socks were created for travel, specifically to combat swelling and the threat of deep vein thrombosis on long flights. While we’re thrilled to use them for that when the time comes, for now they’re making long workouts on cardio machines a LOT more comfortable.

They feel luxurious on the foot as they cradle all the right spots, but they also have a ton of firm-hold stretch that slims the calves and seems to reduce inflammation post-workout. The cushioning in the heel and toe relieve the pressure experienced while performing repetitive motions like the ones made on an elliptical machine or treadmill.

Under Armour Adult Run Cushion No Show Tab Socks, 1-Pair

The poly-nylon-spandex blend of these popular Under Armour socks creates dense cushioning to help protect your high-impact areas of the foot while you run. Anti-odor technology and moisture-wicking fabric are also hugely helpful for anyone whose feet tend to get overly sweaty.

Balega Hidden Comfort No Show Running Socks

Breathability, plush cushioning, foot protection, and reinforced toes and heels are all reasons to consider these Balegas a fine pair of running socks, but let’s be real: the incredible neon color selection is simply too much fun to ignore. Don’t worry if you’re a little less inclined toward loudness, though, and they’re also available in standby neutrals as well.

Nike Spark Lightweight

These are a bit pricier than other options, but they’re great for anyone who needs the extra support of a calf-high compression sock. Switch-foot arch support makes it simple to wear on either foot, while fabric in the heel helps secure the foot in place. Mesh on top of the foot helps with ventilation so things don’t get too heated on your run.

Terrex Techfit Primegreen Traxion Crew Socks

A “locked-in” fit is the big draw here, perfect for getting your feet situated to sit in for the long haul. Primegreen is a material composed of recylced materials, too, so you can feed good about your purchase while the socks feel great on your feet.

ASOS 4505 run sneakers socks with anti bacterial finish 3 pack

“Sometimes you just need new socks,” as ASOS say of these anti-bacterial, basic black no-shows, and we couldn’t agree more. You get three pairs for $11.50 made of soft, stretchy material that won’t let anything gross grow between your toes on those long, sweaty runs, and they’re cut to stay out of sight and out of mind.

Ronnox Compression Socks for Men & Women Colorful Patterned Knee High Socks (16-20 mmHg / 12-14 mmHg) 3-Pairs

Another option in the compression category is this more budget-friendly pack from Amazon. These aid circulation by using graduated compression that helps put pressure where needed while easing up in other areas that don’t need it. They can also help prevent swelling and water retention, so wear them running, on planes, while pregnant, or any number of ways to keep your legs healthy and supported.

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