As we have seen before, it is crucial to have good shoes for hiking. However, to ensure comfort and protection, the choice of your hiking socks is equally important. One does not go without the other!

Let's now discover how to choose the right hiking socks.

Choosing quality hiking socks

The intensive walking done during hikes can quickly damage our feet: repeated friction and excessive sweating can lead to blisters, overheating or, conversely, cooling... There are a whole range of discomforts that can make it difficult, even quickly end your trek if you do not properly equip your feet.

That's why it is essential to invest in quality when choosing your hiking socks, especially based on the following two criteria:


Socks are the interface between your foot and your shoe. They provide you with a comfortable fit and protect your skin from friction against the shoe, thus reducing the risk of blisters.

Thermal regulation:

Depending on the materials they are made of, socks will allow you to evacuate moisture and heat in the summer, or keep your feet warm during the cold seasons.

Which materials to prioritize for hiking socks?

To optimize this comfort, the choice of the material of your hiking socks is crucial. It will depend on the sensitivity of your feet to friction, whether you tend to sweat or not, but also on the climatic conditions in which you will be doing your hike!

There are two categories of materials that are used in the composition of hiking socks:

Synthetic materials:

These materials are durable over time. They allow good moisture wicking and quick drying, but may promote the occurrence of bad odors. They provide good protection against the cold, but are still less effective thermally than natural materials like wool. That's why they may be more suitable for the summer season. Among these materials we find:


Inexpensive, it is durable and provides elasticity. The interest of this material is that its fibers can be shaped either in hollow form to increase thermal insulation properties, or in trilobal form to increase its contact surface with air and thus accelerate drying speed. However, when used alone, polyester does not wick away moisture and absorbs water, increasing friction and the risk of blisters. Polyester must also be recycled as it does not degrade on its own in the environment.


It is a stretchable and hydrophobic material. It has the advantage of drying quickly while resisting mold and fungi. It is mainly used in socks for its high resistance (even when the fiber is wet).

Nylon is a type of polyamide.


This synthetic fiber has an additional feature: its high elasticity. Thus, socks containing elastane perfectly fit the shape of the foot. They provide more comfort and allow for significant freedom of movement in sports.

Natural materials:

These materials are derived from nature and therefore have no harmful effects on the environment. In general, they have very good thermoregulatory and breathable properties. Natural materials are therefore perfectly suited for cold seasons. Among these materials we find:


It is the essential material for winter. Whether it comes from sheep, goats, or alpacas, this natural fiber is the best for thermal insulation. The higher the percentage of wool in a sock's composition, the more insulating the sock is and provides a feeling of warmth. Additionally, wool has a strong ability to absorb and wick away moisture, allowing you to stay dry at all times.

It's important not to overlook this detail, especially when you consider that moisture increases the appearance of blisters and the sensation of cold! However, wool socks can also be worn in summer because it is an insulating and thermoregulating material. If you tend to sweat on your feet, wool is perfect for absorbing moisture and limiting odors.


It is the most commonly used material in making socks because once woven, its fibers are very durable and comfortable. It is easy to wash and relatively durable. Cotton socks can be worn daily and in all seasons, but they are not suitable for intense sports like hiking. Indeed, cotton absorbs moisture and becomes waterlogged, which increases friction and creates a sensation of cold.

No need to panic, you won't have to choose between synthetic materials and natural materials when making your selection! They are often combined for making socks: they can be found in varying percentages, so your choice should be based on the technical properties you are looking for.

How to recognize quality hiking socks?

Today, there are many design techniques that produce high-quality hiking sock models:

Seamless toe socks:

The extra thickness caused by seams can increase friction and compression, leading to blisters and discomfort. To eliminate these issues, it's best to opt for seamless socks.

Reinforcement zones:

Quality hiking socks are equipped with reinforcements that can be located at the toes, heel, or ankles. These areas have specific fibers added, often knitted in loops to create a thick and plush effect. This ensures optimal comfort, reduces friction, and increases the longevity of your hiking socks!

Ventilated zones:

Conversely, some areas of quality hiking socks are thinner to wick away sweat and provide maximum ventilation. These areas are often found on the top of the foot, the sides of the foot or calf, where friction is minimal. Better ventilated, feet are protected from blisters and unpleasant odors.

2-by-2 Sizing:

Many hiking sock brands offer sizing in increments of 4 (40-43, for example), 3, or sizes expressed in letters (S, M, L...). This sizing system allows manufacturers to make significant production cost savings. However, it poses serious size precision issues. In the case of sizing in increments of 4, a person wearing size 41 will have to choose the same sock as a person wearing size 44. It is unreasonable to expect the sock to perform correctly in such cases.

Wearing socks that are the wrong size can quickly lead to discomfort: if they are too small, compression will cause pain, and if they are too large, folds will appear, increasing the risk of blisters.

To make sure you are making the right choice, opt for specific technical hiking socks, which come in sizes that differ by a maximum of 2 (35-36, 37-38, 39-40…). If your shoe size falls between two sizes, for example, 41.5, it's better to choose the smaller size, which would be 41. Lastly, if the sock you choose contains elastane, it will adapt perfectly to your foot thanks to its elastic properties.

Hemispherical Heels:

The human heel is shaped like a half-sphere. To save on material, brands that design low-quality socks make flat heels. This technique does not allow the socks to conform to the shape of the heel, therefore they do not stay in place correctly and tend to slip under your foot. It's advisable to choose socks designed with a hemispherical heel!

Socks for Left and Right Feet:

One of the main purposes of technical socks is to be as close to the foot as possible by conforming to its shape. Since feet are asymmetrical, quality models will provide you with an anatomical pair of socks, consisting of one sock for the right foot and one for the left foot.

The fit becomes much more precise, regardless of the shape of your feet and calves. Presence of a support band Support bands are areas where elastane is mainly found. They can be located at the instep, ankle, or calf. As mentioned earlier, elastane provides great elasticity, and these bands will ensure that your socks stay securely in place.

Blister-Resistant Socks:

This type of sock, also known as "double-skin," is a good option because its double-layer design helps to reduce friction between the layers rather than on your foot. However, be aware that this type of sock may be thicker. The Monnet TWIN TREK double-skin blister-resistant socks are designed to significantly reduce blisters while providing maximum comfort. These socks can be used in extreme cases, but in other situations, socks with quality reinforcements may suffice.

What Sock Height to Choose for Hiking?

For hiking, it is recommended that the sock should at least reach the same height as the shoe collar to avoid direct friction with the skin. There are three heights for hiking socks:

  1. "Low" socks that stop just above the ankle bones and are worn with "low-cut" shoes.
  2. "Mid" socks that stop about 3 to 5 centimeters above the ankle bones and are worn with "mid-cut" shoes.
  3. "High" socks that stop just below the calf and are worn with "high-cut" shoes.

However, you can also wear higher socks, up to below the knee, especially to protect yourself from vegetation or cold.

What Sock Thickness to Choose for Hiking?

This choice depends on several factors: First and foremost, it's important to choose socks of a thickness that does not compress the foot once the shoe is on. Then, you can make your choice based on the weather conditions, but remember that you don't need very thick socks to stay warm. To find out which sock materials will keep you warm without being too thick, you can also read our article "What material to choose for my socks."

On the contrary, socks that are too thin can increase friction with your shoes, leading to a higher risk of blisters. Also, consider your comfort level! It also depends on the characteristics of your shoes (flexible and lightweight for trails, heavy and rigid for treks).

Is there a difference between men's and women's hiking socks?

Most manufacturers differentiate socks by color and size. However, since the structure of men's and women's feet is the same, there is no technical justification for designing separate models for men and women. In other words, it's all about colors!

The most important thing is to wear a pair of socks that are closest in size to your feet, and therefore to choose models that come in sizes differing by two. As for color choice and the rest, feel free to choose what you like!

Can you reduce your carbon footprint by choosing your socks?

Good news: yes! Even when choosing your socks, you can help protect the planet! To select eco-friendly hiking socks, opt for items made in France. They will have traveled fewer miles than if they had been manufactured abroad. All Monnet socks come from the production unit in Montceau les Mines, in the heart of Burgundy.

This town is one of the historical cradles of French textiles. In the 1930s, François Monnet, the founder of the brand, relied on the region's residents' know-how to make the models bearing his name. Over the years, the brand specialized in making sports goods, especially ski socks, and other disciplines. Typically, socks labeled "Made in France" are manufactured in France "from the yarn stage." This means that the yarn is imported from Europe or elsewhere. But choosing European raw materials also means reducing the miles traveled before you buy your pair of socks.

You can also choose items made with recycled materials! Now you have all the information you need to know which socks to choose for hiking, or at least which ones will be the best for you!