Best Kids Socks of 2021
Kids socks are one of those categories that may be a no-brainer for adults, but when it comes to your children, there’s simply so much to think about. Most offer imaginative prints, bright colors, and fanciful designs, but there are also those which focus on comfort, quality, and durability. The best possible option is to choose a pair that will combine the two.
This is why we compiled a list of the absolute best kids socks that money can buy. We hope that you and your little one will find something nice to wear in no time!
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Just because a product is from a well-known brand, it doesn't mean it's made with the highest quality in mind and vice versa.
It is possible that the brand of a garment may be a considerable factor when selecting items for your next purchase. Chances are, if a pair is produced by a reputable undergarment manufacturer, you will connect this to overall quality that is of a higher standard.
With kid's products, just like with anything else, you expect to receive a quality that is directly related to the price you pay, but very often, smaller manufacturers will be able to provide a better garment than those who mass produce. It is not rare to find that big brands make items that are manufactured in overseas factories where quality control is not as high as you would expect from a well-known, popular brand.
While our best list includes both reputable companies, as well as smaller, lesser-known manufacturers, it is important to note a few things that you might find useful before making your next purchase.
First and foremost, big brand names will often overcharge based on reputation, packaging, and simply because they can. It is a well-known fact that people are willing to shell out considerably more if they think they are getting a superior product. This doesn’t mean that you should disregard other manufacturers that may even be giving you better quality and a better price but have not yet gained popularity.
Under Armour, a reputable brand that makes high-quality sports equipment, including hosiery for athletic use, is a great example – just a few years ago, this was a small company that focused on athletic undergarments. Today, they are not just a leader in the sportswear field, but even more, have gained the reputation of a driven brand that is in the process of expansion and that is slowly becoming a household name.
The other thing you need to consider when making a choice of brand is whether the tag is relevant for the specific product you are in the market for. While certain brands may have a reputation for producing items of high quality, it is very likely that they are not their main focus. Thus, you should consider whether a brand such as Jefferies, for example, may offer you more quality than a sportswear magnate who is selling in addition to hundreds of other products they put their logo on.
Ease of Use
This type of childrenswear needs to be able to withstand frequent machine washing at high temperatures.
Just like any other item of clothing worn by a kid, kids' products can get quite messy. Children need clothes that can be easily washed and kept clean, regardless of what body part they are covering and protecting.
One of the most important criteria when it comes to kids' clothes and shoes is that they need to be appropriate for a hot machine wash. Being suitable for tumble drying is an added plus.
Unfortunately, not all will do well in this category, so that’s why there are two things we wanted to pay special attention to when making our selection.
The first of these is how they perform when being washed. Most clothing will shrink when washed at higher temperatures, but as a parent, you may find that you simply need to use hotter water as some stains are more difficult to get out than others. Another thing to consider is that most bacteria will not be killed off unless you use a washing temperature of 60 degrees Celsius or higher.
What happens with most items when washed at such high temperatures is that they lose their shape. While some lose their elasticity and thus become unsuitable for use as they refuse to stay on the feet, others will shrink even up to several sizes. When making your choice, you need to consider how much a pair of socks will shrink when washed – is this just 1 or 2%, or is it considerably more?
If your child is between sizes, we would recommend sizing up in order to avoid having a pair (or a whole pack) of socks that are too small to be comfortably worn.
The other thing you need to pay attention to is color retention. Some makers use low-quality materials, knits, and colors that will easily fade or even become warped when washed even in cold water. That’s why it is important to know that the pair you choose to purchase won’t bleed or fade after one wash – this will ensure easier laundry days and will be helpful in avoiding disappointment when a favorite pair stops looking like what it was originally supposed to resemble.
Also, note that this quality of dye and knit can also reflect on your child’s sensitive skin. Some children have skin that is more sensitive than others, which means that choosing socks dyed in eco-friendly and non-toxic colors is imperative for anyone shopping for childrenswear.
Look for gentle materials that won't cause discomfort, but also those with some elasticity in them to stay in place.
When shopping for children, most people will want a fabric that is natural and soft. Cotton, terry cloth, and wool are all excellent options, but more often than not, they do not possess all the properties required for a good pair.
The most important of these is elasticity, which is crucial for a pair that will provide enough stretch so that they stay in place, and won’t slide down or bunch up around certain areas. Manufacturers will usually add a small percentage of synthetic fabrics to the material blends used, and these include nylon, polyester, spandex, and acrylic.
Nylon is a great choice for elasticity, but its main downside is the fact that it does not only promote perspiration, but it also retains moisture close to the skin. This is not a good thing, especially when considering that your kid will be wearing a pair of these throughout the day which will most probably include strenuous activities such as running and playing.
Polyester is very similar to nylon – not only is it elastic, but it is also durable, and can take quite a beating. What it does well with is moisture, as it won’t retain as much perspiration as nylon, and will provide you or your child with a more breathable garment that will dry more easily.
Acrylic resembles wool and is an excellent choice for the colder months when you need some added warmth. It will also do well at sports practice as it does quite a good job at wicking away moisture from the body so that your child does not end up with foot odor or a skin rash or even infection.
Finally, there is spandex, elastane or lycra, which manufacturers will add because of their extreme elasticity.
You will find that most cotton socks have some percentage of these materials. Otherwise, they would be extremely difficult to put on, and would probably not even stay on without the added stretch.
Another thing that you need to consider when looking at materials is the number of seams and exposed thread that will be in contact with your child’s foot. Children have skin that is more sensitive to the touch than that of adults and will often feel heightened discomfort from tags, seams, and scratchy fabrics.
That’s why you need to make sure that the product you purchase doesn’t hurt them or make them uncomfortable. Some manufacturers make seamless ones that have no bands, bumps or exposed threading, and for kids with sensitivity issues, these are often the only option.
For other children, it is still important that you take softness and comfort into consideration. Look for ones that don’t have rough seams on the toe part to prevent rubbing or even blisters, and try to find products that won’t be too tight around the calves, as this can cut off circulation and cause marks to appear on your child’s skin.
While you may want a sensible, monochrome option, perhaps it's best to choose a style that is fun and playful for your kid to enjoy.
Kids are a tough crowd to shop for, and you will find that providing them with clothing that is colorful, comfy and fun will do much better than sensible, monochrome options that adults may prefer to look professional and presentable.
A perfect pair of these will tick all the boxes not just for you as a parent (durability, price, ease of maintenance) but also for your kid who might find that a pair of cat ears is much more important than how well their products wash in high temperatures.
All the products on our list have been chosen so as to meet the highest design standards, and include both novelty options with fun designs and happy colors, as well as those more classic models that will be suitable for wear on more serious occasions such as formal events or schools with a stricter dress code.
Durability is key, and in order to make sure you get the best deal possible, go for socks which are sold in packs.
Last but not least, it is important that we mention two of the most important factors for choosing a winner pair for your kid to wear.
As you already know very well, children do not hold the reputation of being gentle on their clothing, and you need to invest in items that will stand the test of rough play, barefoot prancing around the house, sports practice, after-school activities, and any other activity your child might think of performing wearing nothing on their feet but a pair of these.
Those that get holes in them after just one use, or after a few washes can be frustrating and a source of embarrassment for your child; you will feel that you have spent your hard-earned money on a product that was not worth the investment.
All of the items on our top list have been tested for durability, and the pros and cons should give you an idea of the lifespan you can expect of each of these items. While you may find that those which last longer have a higher price tag, the difference is usually just a couple of dollars, while the added time you get to use them can range up to a year or two.
When it comes to shopping for kids' socks, our suggestion is to do this by purchasing packs, as they will usually cost considerably less when bought in larger numbers. Almost all items on our list come in packs of five, six or twelve, which will not only provide you with a few saved dollars but also will allow you to finish your intended shopping faster and with less hassle.
Top 10 Kids Socks
Jefferies is a great choice for the entire family if it is high quality and fun design you want. This fashion crew is made for kids who appreciate fun patterns, ruffles and pretty colors that will brighten even the rainiest of days.
These are made out of premium cotton, blended with polyester and spandex to ensure they retain their shape even after numerous wears and washes. They are comfortable and provide just the right amount of stretch to give your child a secure but unrestrictive fit.
The pattern on these is knit-in, using the best quality yarns available, and making a high-density design with more stitches per inch than most other options on the market.
What this ensures is longer durability that will stand the test of school, play, and everyday wear.
2. Rative Non Skid
These cute options for toddlers and little boys come in packs of six or twelve and are perfect for little guys who just love running around the house without slippers or shoes. They feature beautiful designs with cars, helicopters, fire trucks or animals, paired with red, yellow, blue, green and gray colors, all of which will bring some happiness into your everyday life.
Featuring a standard crew height, these are made out of medium thickness material, making them a great choice for all seasons.
As a parent, you will love these because of the non-slip soles they have, enabling your little guy to run around anywhere, including tile, hardwood floors, and other slick surfaces. You will be happier knowing that your kid is protected against slips and falls, and they will enjoy the extra grip their new favorite option provides them.
These are 95% cotton and 5% spandex and will prove to stand the test of time, even with aggressive wear, machine washing, and drying. Not having these become torn or deformed after a few wears means that they are an excellent investment, especially if you get the bigger pack which gives you 12 pairs to wear on a daily basis.
3. Spotted Zebra
This set from The Spotted Zebra Store features lots of spots, strikes, and colorful graphics, your little one will simply adore choosing from the mix-and-match bold styles. With 12 different pairs of socks in each multi-pack, your child will love picking their favorite socks to wear with their outfit.
The socks come in brightly colored themes including Safari Animals, Unicorns, Cats, Under the Sea, Dinos in Space, and more! Offering something suitable for both boys and girls, these socks will certainly brighten up your child’s spirits.
They are made from high-quality cotton, blended with polyester, ensuring they keep their shape and remain durable. The comfy socks are stretch, making them perfect for growing feet!
These fun printed socks come in different sizes including X-Small (sizes 6-9), Small (sizes 10-13), Medium (shoe sizes 1Y-2Y), and Large (shoe sizes 3Y-6Y).
Priced affordably, this multi-pack of 12 socks is a brilliant buy, you will want to buy one than one set!
4. Under Armour Youth Essentials 2.0
Under Armour is one of the leading sportswear manufacturers in categories ranging from footwear to apparel too. Their Youth Essentials collection is, as its very name implies, essential for any sports-oriented child. They are made with top-of-the-line materials and technologies, and your little one will want for nothing when they put these on at the start of their day.
The Youth Essentials are made with special ARMOURDRY technology that makes sure there is no moisture surrounding the foot, as it speeds up the evaporation process. These come with a flat knit build which takes the shape of the foot for a personalized type of comfort, and the reinforced heel and the toe area are there for increased durability.
On top of it all, there is an anti-odor system in place which prevents nasty smells and microbe development.
The heel is comfortably cradled in a Y-pocked of the Youth Essentials, and there is Dynamic Arch Support which keeps away the fatigue and helps your little one play for as long as they want to. With so many high-tech features and colorful options to choose from, who can resist this pair of hardcore athletic?
5. Sesame Street Elmo
Is your child a fan of Sesame Street? If so, they will be all-too-familiar with popular characters like Elmo, Big Bird, Oscar the Grouch, Cookie Monster, Zoe, and Abby. These super cute and color socks will certainly bring a smile to your little one’s face, featuring some of their favorite characters from the show.
Made from polyester and spandex, the 6 pack socks feature all six characters in both boy and girl color options, giving you plenty of socks to choose from. As well as the colorful design, the socks are guaranteed to be super soft against your little one’s skin, keeping their feet lovely and warm all day long.
They feature ribbed-knit cuffs and reinforced heels and toes. They also have grippers on the sole of your foot, preventing your little one from slipping on the floor. The quality socks have a cushioned sole for extra comfort and additional arch support.
The socks come in a baby size suitable for 12-24 months and toddler sizes 2T-3T and 4T-5T. These super cute colorful socks are an extremely affordable purchase that your little one will love wearing.
6. Simple Joys by Carter's
Handily packaged in a set of twelve, these sporty socks crafted in a cotton blend material offer a low cut no-show style. Simply colored, they come in neutral tones - white with blacks, grays, and whites in various combinations.
The rise is slightly higher than that found in typical low cut kids products, and the item is overall slightly thicker than the average athletic sock. They come with non-skid soles and rib knit cuffs.
Earning points for wear-and-tear, the Ankle from Simple Joys by Carter's is heavily reviewed as great for overall endurance. After repeated washes and dryer spins, these performed extremely well, with no pilling or loss of stretch. They contain nylon and spandex elastic material, fortifying a cotton and polyester base.
These skinny low-rise athletic designs come with non-skid soles and rib-knit cuffs. They are machine washable and a favorite of many baby and toddler parents.
7. N/H Leeshow
The Leeshow set from N/H is perfect for little ones who enjoy jumping on trampolines or running along with slippery wooden flooring. They also make great gym, dance or yoga socks. The colorful stripy socks come in a pack of 4, offering color choices suitable for both boys and girls.
The socks have been made using high-quality cotton with a blend of polyester and spandex. The kid socks feature an anti-skid bottom, making them suitable to wear across a range of surfaces including tiles, cement, and wooden flooring without your little ones falling over.
They have a wide and dense top that prevents the socks from falling. The socks offer a medium thickness and are breathable, making them suitable to wear all year round.
The Leeshow socks come in two sizes being 2-5 years old and 6-9years old. They also come in two color options consisting of black, navy, blue and yellow or black, dark purple, purple, and pink. At such a reasonable price you will not want to miss out on buying these socks.
8. Dani's Choice
Is your child an animal lover? Likes to play with cats, dogs, hamsters and guinea pigs of all kinds? Why not treat them with a pair - or several - of super cute animal print! This Animal collection from Dani’s Choice has it all - cats, bulldogs, Pomeranians, huskies, you name it!
But the Animals from Dani’s Choice are not only about appearance. These are also high in quality, with their cotton/spandex blend which ensures a soft, gentle fit and just enough stretch so that they stay in place but don’t dig into the skin. The brand makes sure that all of the products are checked for quality before they’re packaged, so you know you’re getting the best possible deal!
What is amazing about these designs is that they go well with everything! Whether your kid is going to school or to see their grandparents or to play with friends - the Dani’s Choice Animals are a great stylistic option for the fun, playful youth!
With these on, every time your little one takes a look at their animal-printed feet they won’t be able to take the smile off their face.
9. Gold Toe Colorblocks
Gold Toe is a long-standing company known for its well-made sock products. These are the athletic version, thinner in density than a crew, built with extraordinary stretch and a smooth feel to the touch.
A true low-cut athletic sock, Gold Toe Colorblocks come in two different designs and are composed of ribbed accents flanked with colored highlights.
Gold Toe is the United States' third-largest producer of these, making quality menswear since 1934. With a solid reputation based on a durable material and caliber stitching, these hold true to Gold Toe standards, stylized with a sporty twist.
Composed of 80% polyester, 18% cotton, and 2% spandex, these athletic products sit perfectly near the ankle. The cuff grips well and is of medium weight, offering the perfect fit for active days.
10. Adidas Youth Crew
The sportiest of all options, this entrant crew sock from Adidas offers contemporary styling with striking racer stripes. This is the sleekest of the crew, a true sock hybrid offering the lightness of an athletic sock with the length of a crew. A cult favorite, Adidas gives the Youth Crew added name recognition.
Available in six different shades composed of an innovative fabric blend, this is the only sock on the list offering natural latex, in addition to spandex.
Soft with a supernatural stretch, Adidas uses 96% polyester, 2% spandex and 2% natural latex woven together with revolutionary technology. Adidas engineered ClimateLite technology, a space-age fabric allowing for maximum breathability and dryness.
An athletic dynasty, Adidas has a reputation as a premier athletic wear company. You can rest assure this option, even though pricier than some other picks on this list, is worth every penny.