Why are most socks not 100% cotton?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by bjornb17, Apr 24, 2011.

  1. bjornb17

    bjornb17 Senior member

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    Most socks you find at the store are like 70% cotton and then a mix of several other fibers, like rayon, polyester, nylon, etc. What is the reason for this? I can't imagine it being because of cost, because many other cheap clothes are 100% cotton.
     
  2. StephenHero

    StephenHero Black Floridian

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  3. itbegins

    itbegins Senior member

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    elasticity

    +1. Some man-made fibres (i.e. polyester for instance) also help garments retain their original shape -- you'll notice in your cotton shirts, that the seams no longer run straight down the sides if you hold the shirt from the shoulders and let it hang.
     
  4. phxlawstudent

    phxlawstudent Senior member

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    They use it in the heel for strength. In the arch for elasticity. Probably in the top for elasticity too.
     
  5. linkinwayne

    linkinwayne Senior member

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    Also, 100% cotton would fall apart a lot faster, though that's probably not the main reason
     
  6. westinghouse

    westinghouse Senior member

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    Cost
     
  7. Will

    Will Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Nylon is much less expensive than cotton. It also enables the natural fiber portion of the sock to be made to a lower density, using less cotton. That's why 100% natural fiber socks are usually about 20% more expensive than the with-nylon versions. The price is that nylon-added socks are not as comfortable.
     
  8. intent

    intent Senior member

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    All cotton socks also lead to blisters, since cotton doesn't wick sweat.
     
  9. Poindexter

    Poindexter Senior member

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    Cotton wicks sweat moderately, but there are reasons for the other fibers. Bamboo wicks and deodorizes. Nylon and Polyester give stability to a garment that's under terrific stress. The stretchy stuff gives form and fitability.

    Socks have a tough job. The manufacturers are trying to do de job. You can get 100% cotton socks if you look around enough, but you just might be happier with the mixed-breed WallyWorld socks.
     
  10. wojt

    wojt Senior member

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    I take 98% cotton 2% spandex are better choice than 80% cotton 20% poly?
    Anyone has an opinion on these blends?
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2013
  11. UnnamedPlayer

    UnnamedPlayer Senior member

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  12. Zarium

    Zarium Senior member

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    Viccel is 100% cotton though. I can't comment on how they wear yet since they haven't arrived.
     
  13. Hayward

    Hayward Senior member

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    Cotton is a terrible material for socks grenerally. Socks should be wool, or a wool blend.
     
  14. teddieriley

    teddieriley Senior member

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    Wait, you smell that?
    

    Not true.
     
  15. CaymanS

    CaymanS Senior member

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    Gold Toe OTC (over the calf) socks have been my go-to for a decade and I couldn't be happier. They are not pure cotton, but feel fantastic, and constrict the calf muscles a bit so as to improve blood flow, especially on flights. I can't recommend them enough.
     

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