Do you constantly have redness and itchiness on your feet? If so you may be allergic to your socks of all things!
While there are a multitude of reasons why your feet may have such symptoms, sock allergies can be one of the most common reasons.
Here, we’ll provide you with everything you need to know and dig deeper into the details. From what causes a sock allergy to some tips on choosing socks, and recommendations of hypoallergenic socks, we’ll cover it all.
What Are The Symptoms of Foot Allergies?
The most common symptoms include:
- Pus or discharge
- Redness or swelling
- Scale formation
- Tenderness or pain
There are many reasons for foot allergies, but they can mainly be attributed to contact dermatitis. Some of the more common triggers include cosmetic, dyes or detergents, metallic substances, poison ivy or oak, along with industrial chemicals such as elastic and latex.
If you’ve got a foot rash, the biggest culprit can be attributed to the elastic that’s used in conventional socks. Spandex and latex could also contain proteins that may cause itchy red splotches along with other symptoms. If the skin on your feet starts to swell and feel irritated, gets reddish, starts to flake, or gets inflamed, it’s most likely that you’re allergic to the material in your socks.
Read on to find out more!
Sock Fabrics That Cause Allergies
As mentioned above, the material within the socks can cause allergies. Rubber and dyes can also contribute to foot allergic contact dermatitis, and this accounts for approximately 80% of all cases.
Wearing socks and shoes for extended periods of time can also cause eczema in the feet along with itching and small eruptions. It’s mainly due to dampness that’s caused when your feet don’t have breathing room.
What’s The Best Way to Minimize Sock Allergies?
The best thing to do is to purchase socks that are made with 100% organic cotton that’s certified with Global Organic Textile Standards (GOTS). Your socks should also be free from gallate chemicals, carba mix chemicals, latex, spandex, and other harsh chemicals. Ideally, they should also be made without any elastic material.
For those with eczema, thicker socks will help with protection followed by a thin smooth sock or sock liner under them. Liners made of Merino wool, silk, or even nylon work well. The thick socks will help protect your feet while the liners will help with wicking away sweat.
Things to Avoid
If you’ve got a sock allergy, you should avoid purchasing socks with the following:
4 Choices of Hypoallergenic Socks
Below are some great hypoallergenic socks that are free from the items listed above and will provide your feet with long-lasting comfort.
Tittimitti 100% Organic Cotton Socks
These beautiful socks are made in Italy from 100% organic combed cotton and are colored with non-toxic dyes. The socks are not treated with bleach, formaldehyde or any other toxic substances, and are certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS). The socks undergo a combing process to remove small threads and impurities, making these socks luxuriously soft and comfortable. They are also more durable than regular cotton.
Cottonique Organic Cotton Socks
Another great pair of socks is this Cottonique latex-free organic cotton socks for women. They’re soft and pure and specially manufactured for hypoallergenic confidence. It’s made with 100% cotton material, and the rib-knit body allows the sock to contract and expand without stretching the materials. It has low allergen content and is sensitive, skin-friendly, and is both latex and spandex free.
Ecotanic Organic Linen Socks
This pair of Ecotanic socks are made with 100% organic linen and are perfect for those with sock allergies. They’re hypoallergenic and are highly breathable with no dye added. It comes with a reinforced toe and heel and has a wide comfortable cuff elastic for everyday comfort.
EcoSox Bamboo Viscose Socks
Last on the list are these Ecosox bamboo socks that are ultra-soft and provide your feet with all-round comfort. It has an integrated smooth toe seam to reduce friction, and arch support ensures that your sock is kept in place. The bamboo viscose material also helps with regulating temperature, inhibits foot odor, and is also hypoallergenic.
FAQ’s – You Ask, We Answer
Below are answers to some of the commonly asked questions we’ve received.
How often should a pair of hypoallergenic socks be washed?
It depends on the material. If you’re wearing cotton socks, you should wash them every day as they can breed bacteria. If it’s a wool blend like Merino wool however, you can wear them for days without having to change or wash them.
Why do certain socks make my feet stink?
If your sock doesn’t breathe well, it can cause your feet to produce more sweat. Damp socks from rain or snow can also contribute to smelly feet. The odor is mainly attributed to moisture so you’ll want to be wearing breathable socks. If your socks are wet, you’ll also want to remove them as soon as possible.
Why do my socks leave marks around my ankles?
The sock marks are caused by pressure from the elastic so you’d want to purchase a more comfortable pair of socks that don’t give you that problem.
Are nylon or cotton socks better?
Cotton socks are generally better than nylon socks because they’re lighter and cooler, and also allow the feet to breathe – which is important. Since nylon is an acrylic material, it doesn’t absorb sweat well. Nylon socks are also usually made with elastic or include traces of latex which can further contribute to sock allergies.
Can I be allergic to my socks?
The simple answer to this is yes! You can be allergic to certain materials, dyes, or even the elastic in your socks.
Why do my socks make me itch?
If your socks make you itch, you’re most likely allergic to them. The best thing to do is to replace them with a pair of hypoallergenic socks.
What socks are best for eczema?
100% cotton socks are best for those with eczema – preferably those that aren’t dyed. It’s also recommended to change your socks a couple of times during the day if you’re prone to sweating as damp socks can make eczema worse. You can also try wearing a thick pair of socks with a thin, inner liner.
What fabric is best for hypoallergenic socks?
Cotton is a great fabric for socks, but bamboo has also gained popularity in recent years due to being breathable, moisture-wicking, and inhibiting foot odor. Wool socks are fast becoming another option to look out for as well.
We hope that this article gives you a comprehensive overview of both hypoallergenic socks and sock allergies, and you’ll be able to find a comfortable pair of socks that’ll suit your everyday needs.