What are the best socks for men? That really all depends. Are you looking to keep your feet dry in swampy heat, or keep your feet warm in cold weather? Do you need extra arch support, or a reinforced heel and toe? Athletic socks or dress socks? Crew socks or ankle socks? Supima cotton or merino wool?
Maybe you’ve got specific answers to those questions, or maybe you need all of the above. Either way, we’ve rounded up the eight essential types of men’s socks you’ll want to reacquaint yourself with once you start wearing shoes that aren’t cozy slippers. (Which, to be clear, should be now.) From weighty hiking socks to moisture-wicking performance socks, here are the 24 best socks for men for every situation, style, and budget.
The All-Purpose Half-Calf
If you’re looking to overhaul your sock drawer from the ground up with the most useful, versatile pairs around, these are the ones to stock up on first.
The C-Suite Essential
Ribbed, solid-hued dress socks are still the very best way to fill in the gap between the cuff of your suit trousers and the tops of your oxfords.
The Heavy Hitters
The Summer Camp Specials
Sleepaway camp: good for making lifelong friends, learning practical survival skills, and developing excellent taste in thick, nappy socks.
The Retro Athletic Tubes
The Hippy-Dippy Hosiery
Even if you aren’t a full-blown, hemp-wearing flower child, you still need at least one pair of vibey tie-dye socks in the rotation.
The Total Swerves
We don’t much abide by novelty socks anymore—sorry, Justin Trudeau—but these freaky patterns will scratch the itch your Frasier socks used to.
The #menswear-era heyday of going sockless is long behind us, but as our guy John Cho once proved at the Oscars, there’s still a time and place for flashing some ankle. Here’s how to do it without swamping up your brogues.