Types of Socks

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Patterned socks of different lengths on colorful background - Types of Socks

Socks are worn for several reasons — to protect your feet from sweat and blisters, to keep your feet warm, and as a fashion accessory. Some are worn for everyday wear, others for special occasions, and some for certain activities like sports. So, don't overlook this important piece of clothing.

Picking the right pair of socks can make or break your outfit. It's not only important to choose the right pattern and color scheme, but also the right length. Here are the most common types of socks.

Toe-Cover Socks

We know what you're thinking — what's the point of these? Well, toe-cover socks are perfect for mules and clogs, where your bare heel is exposed. As you know, feet sweat, and it's not comfortable to wear shoes with sweaty feet. Toe-cover socks give your toes protection from sweat and blisters while allowing you to just slip into a pair of shoes.

Woman wearing toe covers - Types of Socks

No-Show Socks

No-show socks just cover your feet, leaving your ankles and calves bare. They are typically thin and light for summer wear. They are worn with flats, loafers, and other shoes where you don't want your socks showing. Even those of us obsessed with socks will admit there are times when socks should be hidden.

Man wearing blue no-show socks - Types of Socks

Liner Socks / Extra Low-Cut Socks

Liner socks cover your feet and come up just below your ankle. They are popular in the summer when worn with low-top sneakers. They give you the no-sock look, but provide you all the great benefits of socks, like comfort and sweat absorption. They're generally thicker than no-show socks, giving you that extra protection.

Boy skateboarding wearing shoes and liner socks - Types of Socks

Ped Socks / Low-Cut Socks

Low-cut socks are similar to liners, but they are a little bit longer. They come up just above your ankle. These socks help protect the back of your ankle from rubbing on your shoes. These too are great for low-top sneakers and athletic shoes. Many runners wear them to protect the back of their ankles in case their shoes rub. And, if anybody knows the importance of comfortable feet, it's a runner.

Woman walking wearing running shoes and low-cut socks - Types of Socks

Quarter Socks / Anklets

Quarter-length socks come up just above the ankle bone and touch your shins. They work well for mid- or high-top shoes to protect your ankles from chafing.

Young woman sitting on skateboard wearing quarter socks and sandals - Types of Socks

Mid-Calf Socks / Crew Socks

The staple; the popular; the classic — meet the most common sock length. Crew socks are mid-length and come up to the middle of your calf. They are the most popular sock type because they can be worn with almost anything. They can be worn with pants, shorts, skirts, sandals, flats, sneakers, or boots. Depending on what you pair them with, they can be casual or formal, but will always keep your feet warm. Looking for some inspiration? Find out how to style crew socks.

Group of kids wearing different colored crew socks - Types of Socks

Over-the-Calf Socks / Executive Socks / Trouser Socks

The sock with many names! These socks are similar to crew socks, but they are generally considered dressier and are worn in more formal settings. Because they're worn more with dress pants and shoes, they're also typically a little thinner. When you think of trouser socks, think businessmen.

Businessman with feet up on desk - Types of Socks

Knee-High Socks

Knee-high socks are long and come up to your knee. As you can imagine, they are very good for warmth — and they're cute! Like crew socks, they can be worn with almost anything — even taller boots. Knee-high socks with patterns really make a statement. If you see someone wearing knee-highs, you know they're a sock fan!

Woman sitting with legs together wearing knee-high socks - Types of Socks

Over-the-Knee Socks

As the name implies, over-the-knee socks come up just above the knee. They are typically worn by women wearing skirts, dresses, or shorts. They have a flirty reputation, but you bet they keep you warm!

Woman standing in front of wall wearing roller skates and white over-the-knee socks - Types of Socks

Different Types of Socks

Different socks are for different looks. Get to know all the different types of socks, and choose the ones that are best for you, your outfits, and your activities. We recommend having several types of socks, so you can choose what feels right.

Illustration showing different lengths of socks - Types of Socks

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