A few months ago, the nice people at Swiftwick sent me three pairs of their running socks to test out and review. Because you can only get a good feel for workout clothes — and socks in particular — by wearing them during all kinds of workouts in all kinds of weather and conditions, I took my time putting each pair through their paces. Also, I’ve only been running once or twice a week, so I wanted to make sure I got a good feel for each pair as they are all a bit different in terms of material, cushioning and compression.
Yes, socks can be as custom as running shoes are these days!
What I tried
All the socks listed below come in a no-show or high ankle profile.
MAX CUSHION AND RELAXED COMPRESSION. PLUSH COMFORT.
These were my cold day running socks. They kept my feet nice and toasty and I love the extra cushioning. Despite their thickness, they didn’t get gross and sweaty and wicked sweat nicely. They also didn’t ball up and roll down as some thicker socks tend to do, despite their low profile.
MEDIUM CUSHION AND MODERATE COMPRESSION. EVERYDAY VERSATILITY.
These were my favourites for spring running and indoor workouts. The fabric was nice and soft with a medium thickness, which was great for both indoor and outdoor workouts as they kept my feet warm when it was cold but cool when I warmed up. They also had a bit of compression, which I like. They also stayed put and didn’t cause any chafing or blisters, despite running through puddles out on the trails.
MINIMUM CUSHION AND FIRM COMPRESSION. RESPONSIVE FEEL.
These were my favourites for indoor workouts and would be great for summer running or cycling. The material is light and thin, and I liked the firmer compression. I ended up wearing these a lot for weight lifting indoors, but not so much outside for running as it’s still too cold for my poor feet to handle thin socks and wet weather.
Verdict: Overall I loved the versatility, fit, compression, fabric thickness and nice low profile of the pairs of Swiftwick socks I tried. I was planning to wear the Maxus for my trail race this past weekend, but since I haven’t been running much lately I felt I needed the extra boost from my compression sleeves. Swiftwick does have full calf compression socks as well, which I would love to try.
Swiftwick also makes travel, hockey, hiking and performance socks in a variety of cushioning, compression and fit styles to suit almost everyone’s preferences and needs. Other pluses: Swiftwick socks are made in the USA (yay for North American goods!) and don’t use chemicals for “moisture management”, aka sweat wicking.
And the best part? They don’t cost an arm and a foot (haha) unlike some other performance socks. Most pairs start at around $10.
You can check out their full range of products here and can find them in most running shoe stores.
What are your favourite running or workout socks? Do you prefer compression and/or thin socks or thicker non-compression socks? Do you prefer high or low profile?