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Keep a Blistering Pace Without the Blisters: These Are Some of Our Favorite Running Socks

Give your running socks some extra attention. Your feet will thank you.

running man
Satisfy

When it comes to getting your running kit together, it's okay to admit that socks are generally an afterthought. Shorts get exciting technical fabrics and clever features. Tees and tanks get fun designs. Shoes, obviously, are the top priority. Already fourth in the pecking order and we haven't even mentioned running gear for cooler temperatures yet! Socks don't really have a bad rap — (almost) all of us wear them when we run — but they do tend to be overlooked. When it comes to staying comfortable and preventing blisters and hot spots, though, hardly anything is more important than a good pair of socks.

Running socks, as you may notice once you see our list, don't have to be made from the most technical materials or have unique features to be effective. However, that doesn't mean we don't love a sock that is made specifically with running in mind. We polled GP staffers to get everyone's go-to socks and rounded them up here. Whether you're looking for a lightweight compression sock designed for speed or a comfy, cushioned sock for long Sunday runs, we've got you covered.

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Best for a vintage vibe
Tracksmith Merino Tube Sock
Tracksmith
Tracksmith

Boston-based Tracksmith makes heritage-inspired running gear in some of the highest-quality materials you'll find, including these Merino tube socks that call back to the days of Prefontaine. 

Best for preventing blisters
Balega Enduro Quarter
Fleet Feeto
Balega

A running-store stalwart, these Balega quarter socks were recommended by one of our editors because of their snug fit and moisture-wicking properties.  

Best for a zoned fit
On Running High Sock
On
On

On Running is one of the most exciting new brands in the running world and along with its excellent lineup of shoes you'll find socks that are engineered for running in every way. 

Best for compression
Swiftwick Performance Two Sock
Backcountry
Swiftwick

Swiftwick's socks are basically a second skin but in the best way. Not too tight, the compression is exactly what you want for comfort but is never restricting. They also are excellent at sweat-wicking. 

Best for the style-forward runner
Satisfy 2-Pack Cotton Tube Socks
Satisfy
Satisfy Running

Satisfy makes some of the most technically-advanced, good-looking running gear you can buy. It's expensive, but once you start wearing its gear, even if it's just socks, you won't ever look back. 

Best for temperature regulation
Smartwool Performance Run Light Crew
Backcountry

When it comes to workout gear, wool is actually one of the best materials you can wear and Smartwool is one of the best in that department. These socks are light, comfortable and help keep your feet at the perfect temperature. 

Best for trail running
Darn Tough Run Micro Crew Ultra-Lightweight Running Sock
Darn Tough
Darn Tough

One of GP's many Vermont natives recommended Darn Tough socks, which, as their name indicates, are ready for anything you can throw at them. 

Best for athletes
Stance Run Tab Socks
Stance
Stance

Stance knows athletic socks — the brand has outfitted both the NBA and the MLB in the past. Its running socks are no exception, bringing the brand's best cushioning and materials to the table. 

Best lightweight cushioning
Feetures Elite Light Cushion No Show Tab
Feetures
Feetures

Another sock you'll find in any running store worth its salt, Feetures socks are affordable and have all the features you need to keep your mind on your run and off your feet. 

Best for everyday wear
Bombas Marl All-Purpose Performance Quarter Socks
Dick's
Bombas

Bombas has become one of the best under-the-radar running sock brands in the past few years thanks to its durability and top-notch comfort.  

Best for racing
Nike Racing Ankle Socks
Nike
Nike

What would a list be without Nike? The makers of the OG running shoes of the 70s are (obviously) still at the forefront of the running world. 

InjinjiRun Original Weight Mini-Crew Sock
Backcountry

If you like running in sandals but can't go sockless in the winter months, these are for you. The five-toe design is also exceptional at preventing blisters. 

Best for sweaty feet
Lululemon MacroPillow Ankle Run Sock
Lululemon
Lululemon

Lululemon isn't just a yoga brand anymore. Its excellent lineup of running gear stays true to the Lululemon way, bringing superior comfort to everything in the lineup. 

Best all-around fit
Fits Micro Light - Quarter
Fits
Fits

As their name su, the Fits Micro Light just fits right. With just enough cushioning and Fits' patented Full Contact Fit, these are an excellent option if you prefer a lightweight sock. 

Best for running on a budget
Hanes X-Temp Active Cool Ankle Socks
Walmart
Hanes

When we polled GP staffers, the humble Hanes active sock received an unexpected, enthusiastic recommendation. They proved their mettle with unmatched affordability, durability and above-average cushioning. 

The Best Running Shoes to Buy in 2021
Gear Patrol

LEARN MORE

This list of top performers incorporates recent winners and time-tested standbys to help you find the perfect pair.

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