Do I Need Sock Liners for Hiking?

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Sock liners are very thin light socks designed and made to be worn underneath your regular socks. The whole idea of a sock liner is to absorb the sweat that can get to your shoes or boots and make it smell.

However, for your hiking, is it necessary to wear sock lining? If so, do you need to wear socks lining for every hiking adventure?

Let’s dig in and find out.

Do I Need Sock Liners for Hiking?

When it comes to planning about going hiking, the last thing we all think about is a sock. Sure, you may have some regular socks that have served you well in your last event, but how will they keep you on hiking trips?

There are certain hazards that could come to your feet if you do not wear socks liners when going on a hiking adventure. There is a risk of your feet being blistered or bruised.

You might think that regular socks will protect you from those and to an extent, you might be right. They have potential, but they may not be enough if you consider rain, sweat and possible snowfall at certain altitudes. Socks and socks lining made specifically for hiking can reduce or completely eliminate blisters while walking.

Why Wear Sock Liners for Hiking?

The best preventive measure against smelly feet or blisters is socks lining. Socks liner allows sweat to be absorbed by it reducing moisture which in turn increases comfortability, especially on long hikes.

Sock liners are a must if you are prone to pustules. For less experienced hikers, you can’t tell if there are blisters outside.

Sock liners are a great option to give your feet breathing abilities that no other material can afford. Even if you only use them for hiking, they are perfect for other outdoor activities, such as low-level running or hiking experiences.

These are a few reasons why you should wear sock liners while hiking;

  • Warmth: sock liners offer a special type of warmth underneath your normal socks while hiking, especially during cold weather
  • Blister prevention: sock liners help to reduce moisture and reduce pustules in places where your foot is tight against your shoes, such as toes and heel, by reducing the intensity of friction. Moisture in the feet softens the skin, increasing the risk of blisters and pain. The best liner to prevent blisters is made from comfortable, moisture-wicking fabric.
  • Extra comfort: While most hiking socks are designed to be very comfortable, some hikers choose to bring a pair of sock liners for extra comfort and cushioning during multi-day hikes or camping trips.

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What Are The Types of Sock Liners for Hiking?

Most sock liner brands mostly consist of this material:

  • Polypropylene
  • Wool
  • Nylon
  • Toe-separated
  • DIY: Some hikers use nylon, cut them down, and fold over the outer of their socks. Others use nylon dress socks too.

Here are some types of socks lining for hiking;

I. REI Co-Op Coolmax EcoMade Liner Socks

These brands of socks liners are made with a mixture of polyester and nylon. The polyester part is made from recycled water bottles. The socks have smooth, flat toe edgings that will not irritate your feet while hiking. The extra pads in them also makes them comfortable to hike in.

II. Smartwool Classic Linjer socks

These liners are perfect for trailing. They come in black and white. They are produced with a mixture of wool and nylon. They are also odor-resistant, sweat resistant with a soft and comfy feeling.

These liner socks have zero cushion, so they are not felt while being worn under hiking socks.

III. Injinji Liner Crew NuWool Socks

These are one of the most popular liners on the market today. They are specifically designed for runners and hikers to give them maximum skin coverage and sweat resistance. These socks pull moisture away from your feet. They also prevent blisters when hiking.

IV. Fox River Alturas

These socks are very lightweight. They are made with a mixture of nylon, spandex and polypropylene.

These socks help keep your feet dry and cool. They are also very soft.

V. Wigwam Coolmax Liner

These types of socks are made from a mixture of polyester, spandex and nylon. They work together for comfort and moisture clearing to create the perfect liner socks.

These socks are very lightweight and thin, they also lack pads that can make them uncomfortable.

When Should You Use a Sockliner for Hiking?

If you are going for just a day’s hike with fitted, comfortable boots and a pair of good hiking socks, then you most likely do not need any liners.

However, if you are going for hikes longer than 60 miles, your feet might be a bloody blister mess.

It is always safe to wear Sock liners no matter the distance you are planning to cover. After all, there is no harm in wearing sock liners.

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Which Type of Sockliner is Right for You?

There is no exact way to come to the right answer, there is neither a right answer nor a wrong one.

The best way to know which sock liner is right for you is by testing whatever liner is introduced at the store before buying them. If it is possible, go along with your hiking boots and socks to have the right conclusion on whether you have the right one or not.

How Can I Buy The Right Sock Liner for Hiking?

Buying the best liner can be tricky, but it can be done. You have to analyze certain factors before getting liners. You have to consider the material, length and weight. You also have to consider if you’re flat-footed or not and if you have an allergy to certain material.

For weight you have to consider, lightweight, midweight or heavyweight. For materials you have to consider wool, cotton, silk, nylon, e.t.c. and you have to also consider the length that suits you.

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However, keep in mind that you cannot mistake any of these sock liners you have selected. Wearing them helps prevent blisters while keeping your feet feeling dry and comfortable.

You will love them so much, and you will start exchanging your traditional “work” socks for them! 

Socks liners offer more comfortability and mobility. They give you no reason to slow down and give you extra rest to continue hiking. The longer the journey, the more important it becomes.

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Written by Jane Miller

I'm Nomadic Jane, a digital nomad and travel blogger. Since 2009, I've been traveling the world and exploring cultures through my travel blog.