I hate socks. It’s true; I really do dislike them. I have never understood why they are sized so strangely. What sense does it make to create something that can cover four to five sizes all at once? I’m one of those in between types so if I get one size they are too tight, and if I go up then they are huge so what am I to do? The answer has basically been to avoid socks anytime that I could. Most people point to shoes being too narrow and keeping the foot from spreading, but in my mind the sock is an even bigger culprit as it is designed to keep your toes firmly squished together, and I have never liked that feeling. In recent years I found Injini Performance socks, and those became my go-to sock and almost the only socks I ever wore. Still they had their problems as my toes always felt a little individually strangled. That being said they were by far the best option so I overlooked it. Recently Injinji came calling to ask if I would be interested in trying out a new sock they were releasing, and I was more than happy to check it out.
This new sock is called the No-Show Performance Lightweight Toesock. Say that five times fast. If I had any issues with my Injini socks they would be the toe strangle, the fact that they did not offer a true no-show sock, and the thickness. None of these issues were bad enough for me to ever speak a negative word against them because they were still head and shoulders above any other sock I ever tried on. The name of this sock alone got me excited about them, and I could not wait to give them a try.
When they showed up I immediately noticed they were thinner than my other socks, and I liked it. I also noticed that they didn’t feel like regular cotton. I realize that the other socks Injinji offers are not cotton either, but they feel like an old school sock. These felt lighter and had a more airy feel about them. It turns out that they are made of a Coolmax, Lycra, and Nylon blend that feels great on the skin. I also noticed they added a heel tab, and I wasn’t sure why it was needed, but you can never go wrong with some friction protection on the Achilles.
Sliding these socks on I noticed some big changes that both the initial feel and the name had already told me. They were light and felt like they would breathe really well. The toe pockets were not constricting and in fact they were not very noticeable. My foot felt at home in these socks, and I have never come close to thinking something like that about a sock. I spent the rest of the day in the socks and was very comfortable. My feet never felt hot, and my toes never fell asleep so I was already sold on these as a great sock. I still wanted to test them on the run, but even if they were a major failure there I would want more pairs of these just for daily wear.
My first run in the new Injinji socks felt good for the first five miles or so, and then disaster struck as I started feeling hot spots. At first I blamed it on the sock being too thin. Poor logic can happen when you are on a run, pouring sweat, and using all of your oxygen to keep your muscles firing instead of allowing you to make sense. The truth is that my foot was allowed to move too much in the shoes I was testing that day so I wound up with blisters. I will admit with embarrassment that I only figured this out after trying the socks on a second run in a different pair of shoes. I had run in my regular Injinji’s in the other shoes and never had any problems so I blamed the socks. The real issue was that the original socks were thick enough to compensate for the foot movement and protect me from getting the blisters. Not only were these new socks comfortable, but they were now a teaching tool for me. They had a magical ability to help me learn more about my footwear than I ever thought possible! Ok maybe they aren’t that special, but it was an impressive moment of discovery. My second run in them and every use since has been nothing short of great. No blisters, and my feet are comfortable in them all day long. I cannot give a better endorsement than that since I am the guy who almost always chooses to wear no socks at all.
I had an initial concern that the lack of thickness would cause the sock to be less durable, but I’ve been rocking them for nearly three months, and they have held up really well. In fact I really can’t see where they are wearing out at all so I think it’s time for me to put that concern to rest. I have been known in the past to replace my socks on a monthly basis so having them for three months speaks volumes.
If I had anything negative to say about these socks it would be two things. One is that the sock is not a true No-Show sock as it does stick out of the average shoe, and the additional heel padding will show in almost any shoe. It is pretty close to being fully no-show but just not quite. Is this a problem? Sort of, but not really. That will depend on the wearer’s tastes. The second issue is the arch support that is woven into the sock. I do not like arch support of any kind unless it’s being used to help me recover from injury, ache, or long run. I do not believe that socks need this arch support built in and would absolutely love to have socks that didn’t have it. I understand the logic, and I don’t blame companies for putting in there. Why take it out when the majority of runners think they need it and subsequently want it there? The arch band’s supportiveness is minimal so again I say this is really an issue of taste.
So that’s it. This is a nearly perfect product. If you are already a fan of Injinji socks then you will really enjoy these. If you have never worn toe socks and are skeptical of the feel I say let those concerns fly right out the window because these new lightweight socks are almost unnoticeable on your feet. Want to order some right now? Well head on over to their site and enjoy. INJINJI