Whether you’re a construction worker, a nurse, or a teacher, you know that working long hours on your feet can be tricky. Even office workers need to take care of their feet. That’s why good socks are essential to keep your feet comfortable and dry at work. Merino wool is the perfect material for work socks because it’s naturally moisture-wicking, odor-resistant, and durable.
And, since our mission at Merino Wool Gear is to help you discover your ideal Merino wool clothing, we decided to dip our toes in the water cooler with the best Merino wool socks for work!
We’ll cover everything from professional dress socks to performance socks for work boots and everything in between. And we’ll review some of the must-know buying criteria if you want to get a pair for yourself!
- Editor’s Choice: Boardroom Socks
- Best Budget: Danish Endurance (3-Pack)
- Most Versatile: Western Rise Strongcore
- Best Socks For Work Boots: Darn Tough Steely
- Best Padded Socks: Farm to Feet Damascus
- Best Liner Socks For Work: Smartwool Anchor Line
- Best Socks For Commuters: Mission Pro Wool
- Best Socks For Work Trips: Unbound Merino
- Best Merino Wool Sock Bundles
What To Look For: Merino Wool Socks For Work
Before diving into our favorite Merino wool work socks, I want you to understand the buying landscape better. A sock that works for me may not work for you, and vice versa. So, I’ve condensed what to look for into five major categories: Merino wool composition, fabric weight, cushioning, style, and price.
Let’s take a closer look at each.
Merino Wool Composition
Unfortunately, 100% Merino wool socks are not a real thing. Merino can be delicate and can’t withstand a typical sock’s stress and strain. In other words, you would get holes after just a few wears.
So, to strengthen the sock, most brands will blend nylon, polyester, spandex (elastane), and other fibers into the material. Therefore, you get a more durable, high-performance sock while maintaining the beneficial natural properties of Merino wool.
Still, the ‘perfect ratio‘ of fibers is up for debate. You can see Darn Tough’s usage by fiber type, but every brand is different. Just understand that the higher the Merino wool percentage, the softer and more odor-resistant the fabric. Conversely, socks with lower Merino wool percentages are more durable and may dry out quicker.
Ultimately, the decision is up to you and how you plan on using the socks. At least make sure there’s a bit of Merino wool in them!
It can be challenging to gauge the thickness of Merino wool socks. Heavyweight for one brand may be midweight for another.
I’ll do my best to normalize these fabric weights – ultralight, lightweight, etc. – but it’s always best to double-check before you buy. Minus33 has put together an excellent guide for fabric clothing weights. It’s different from socks, but it gives you a better idea of Merino wool’s functionality.
Cushioning & Padding
You may need a sock with added cushioning if you’re on your feet all day. Some brands will use terry loops (the texture of a bath towel) underfoot for impact reduction. Others opt for a targeted cushioning approach, adding padding at hot points throughout the sock for eight hours of comfort.
If you want padded Merino wool socks, understand they can sometimes be bulkier than those without padding. For some tight-fitting work boots, this may be a problem. So, I usually avoid padded socks, but it’s your call. You’re the only one who knows what your feet need!
Style & Versatility
Work socks – especially made of Merino wool – come in all shapes, colors, patterns, heights, and styles. The versatility of the fabric allows it to blend into athletic socks, dress socks, ski socks, and so many more. And it doesn’t matter which type of sock you wear to work, as long as it fits your style.
Still, you want to avoid wearing heavyweight boot socks during the summer, so consider a sock’s versatility when browsing. For example, you may like an over-the-calf style sock for work, but you may not be able to wear it anywhere else. Is it worth spending money on? Should you opt for the crew height instead?
One of the typical style mistakes that newbies make is not choosing the right sock height. Here’s another quick guide from Darn Tough (and our to better visualize how tall these socks may be.
Some Merino wool socks will be expensive compared to your average pair of work socks. Unfortunately, the high price tag is one of the downsides of Merino wool. Did you think you would get all-day comfort for cheap?
The best advice I can give on price is understanding why those socks cost so much. Is it the technical design? High-quality material? Or is it because there is an unconditional lifetime guarantee?
Within my top picks of Merino wool socks for work, I span the price spectrum, so there’s something for everybody. And I can tell you from experience that these picks are worth the price!
Editor’s Choice: Merino Wool Socks For Work
Pros: Professional style & patterns | Excellent moisture management | Relatively affordable
Cons: Not as odor-resistant as others | Limited versatility
At first glance, these may look like your typical dress socks. And here’s the thing: that’s what they are, your usual dress socks but with the beneficial properties of Merino wool! These socks are lightweight, soft, breathable, temperature-regulating, and odor-resistant! It’s just an athletic sock disguised in a white collar.
What I love the most about these socks is their style. They embody the brand Boardroom Socks, as I feel like a big shot whenever I wear them to work. They help me look good by completing the overall outfit, which weirdly allows me to perform better.
I have three pairs of Boardroom socks – charcoal with pink polka dots, khaki with square knots, and navy with little American flags – so I prefer the patterned style. Yet there are plenty of patterns, including a handful of single-color types. You can get them over-the-calf height as pictured or opt for a lower crew. There are just so many options!
Which style is your favorite? Let us know in the comments!
Best Budget Merino Wool Socks For Work
Pros: Fantastic price-to-quality ratio | Super breathable | Made for work, by athletes
Cons: Longterm durability concerns | Sock height discrepancies
There’s no getting around it: Merino wool socks can be expensive. And while I genuinely believe most of the gear is priced accordingly, spending $20+ on socks may border on clinical insanity. Still, there are brands out there, like Danish Endurance, that offer high-quality socks for less than $10 per pair (3-Pack).
You may think: “Aren’t they ‘worse’ than more expensive socks?” Well, not exactly. They tend to wear down faster (a couple of years), but they are worth it. And it’s not like this is some random sock brand. Danish Endurance was formed by and for Olympic athletes to utilize natural fabric for performance. So, while you may be paying less, you’re still getting an everyday sock with technical athletic properties!
Danish Endurance calls these socks a “must-have that [blends] comfort and class,” and I couldn’t agree more. I particularly like the 3/4 height and business casual style. Still, they also have many other designs, fabric weights, and more, so check out the entire collection of what Danish Endurance offers. Or if you’re already digging this three-pack, check them out below.
Most Versatile Merino Wool Work Socks
Pros: Top-notch comfort & versatility | High-quality materials | Enhanced durability
Cons: Limited color & size availability | Possible ankle slippage
Initially designed for travel, the Western Rise Strongcore Merino Wool Socks are versatile everyday socks. These lightweight crews (also available as ankle socks) are perfect for those bouncing from place to place during the workday. And when you hit the gym at the end of the day, you can wear the same socks! They, indeed, are “the one sock for every occasion.”
The secret to this versatility lies in the sock material itself. Western Rise utilizes its StrongCore yarn – a soft but hearty blend of 18.5-micron wool and synthetics – to create a comfortable, durable sock. And, since nearly 30% of the material consists of elastane, these socks have excellent stretch and recovery.
So, if you’re looking for that go-to sock that supports your daily adventures, no matter how chaotic they may be, you’ve got to try these Strongcore socks. And, if you want to complete your work outfit with professional Merino wool clothing, check out Western Rise’s Merino collections (the Limitless Button-Up is my favorite).
Best Merino Wool Socks For Work Boots
Pros: 360° cushioning | Stay-put performance fit | Unconditional lifetime guarantee
Cons: Fit may feel too snug for some | On the pricier side
If you’ve read any of our reviews before, you know we are huge Darn Tough fans here at Merino Wool Gear, and for good reason! They create some of the highest quality, most comfortable, and amazingly durable Merino wool socks on the market. What’s not to love? One of their most popular designs – The Steely Full Cushion Boot Sock – exemplifies Darn Tough’s dominance in the industry.
This is one Darn Tough boot sock for one Darn Tough worker. Just look at some of these features:
- Full 360° cushioning throughout the sock
- Ribbed-knit cuffs and performance fit reduce slippage
- Achilles cushion reinforced footbed
- Toe box cushion for steel-toed boots
However, due to these high-quality materials and technical features, this pair will cost you more than your average boot sock. Still, with a literal unconditional lifetime guarantee, when you buy these socks, you buy them for life. Whenever (if ever) they wear out for any reason, follow Darn Tough’s warranty process on their site. And if you get a couple of pairs, you’ll never have to buy Merino wool socks for your work boots again!
Needless to say, you can’t go wrong with these Steely Boot Socks – or any pair of Darn Tough Merino wool socks, for that matter. Learn more about these socks below!
Best Padded Socks For Work Boots
Pros: Targeted cushioning & padding | Engineered vents | 100% Made in USA
Cons: Not the most versatile style | Not for freezing conditions
Initially designed for multi-day hiking trips, the Farm to Feet Damascus is also an excellent pair for day-to-day use. Using a slightly thicker Merino wool fiber (19.5 microns), these socks are more durable than other pairs but don’t sacrifice comfort.
Outside the soft Merino wool, Farm to Feet has engineered this sock to keep you comfortable no matter what the workday throws your way. For starters, extra padding and cushioning along potential rub points will protect your feet from stiff work shoes (especially work boots). Moreover, there is additional venting that regulates your foot’s moisture. So, not only will it feel like you’re walking on a bed of clouds, but your feet will stay dry the whole time!
Finally, the Farm to Feet Damascus should be your top choice if you require padding and cushioning to get your feet through the day. And since this sock’s primary purpose is hiking, some unique color options exist. From lime green to bright pink, classic gray to maroon, there’s a style for you!
Best Merino Wool Liner Socks For Work
Pros: Minimalist construction | Suited for warm climates | Reputable Merino wool brand
Cons: May form holes with improper care | Fit discrepancies
In the world of Merino wool, Smartwool is one of the most reputable brands out there. They’ve continued to make high-quality Merino wool socks and clothing for over a decade. Regarding Merino wool socks for work, our favorite Smartwool offering is the Everyday Anchor Liner Crew socks.
The best part of these socks is that they are super simple. There are no bells or whistles, surprise features, or anything unique. It’s just one minimalist sock!
It’s technically a Merino wool liner sock, meaning it works best paired with a heavier sock over the top for extra warmth. However, since the fabric is so ultralight and breathable, I find liner socks – especially this Smartwool Everyday Anchor Liner – ideal for summer workwear. Still, if you don’t take proper care of them, the thinner fabric may wear down more quickly.
These Merino wool liner socks for work – which almost have a stocking-like vibe – may not work for everyone. I get it! Smartwool gets it, too! That’s why they’ve created a Sock Finder Tool so you can discover your perfect pair of Smartwool socks. Try it or learn more about the Everyday Anchor Liner socks below!
Best Merino Wool Socks For Commuters
Pros: Secure ribbed-knit ankle | Strong yet soft material | Temperature regulation
Cons: Low Merino percentage | Expensive
Whether biking, walking, or catching the bus to work, commuting can be a drag. And while these Mission Pro Wool socks may not cure a crappy commute, they can at least keep your feet comfy and dry. That’s a win.
Despite only one-third Merino wool, these socks have enhanced odor-resistant properties. So, if you’re caught in a rainstorm or pedaling through a heatwave, you can be sure that your socks will stay fresh once you get to the office. Still, you may have to allow them to air out if you pedal like a menace.
In addition to the Merino wool, Mission Workshop uses some synthetics, like nylon, acrylic, and elastane, to provide strength and elasticity. These synthetics add extra stretch and recovery to the material, so they maintain their shape over time. Moreover, the relaxed fit doesn’t restrict your movement, and the ribbed cuff helps to keep the socks in place.
Finally, these Mission Pro Wool Socks come in half a dozen colors, so there’s bound to be one that matches your daily outfit. And if you want to make a fashion statement, why not go with the bright purple? I sure did!
Best Merino Wool Socks For Work Trips
Pros: Versatile all-weather travel socks | Largest Merino percentage | Bundle & save
Cons: Manufacturing discrepancies | Minimal color options
Work trips are an opportunity to explore a new city without being bogged down with luggage! So packing light is key whenever I travel. One of our favorite Merino wool travel brands – Unbound Merino – makes an all-season crew sock ready to withstand the headache of traveling for work.
The unique thing about these socks is their high Merino wool percentage. At 4/5, it’s the highest wool ratio on this list. They are softer and more odor-resistant, perfect for wearing multiple times without washing. And, since Merino wool is such a great temperature regulator, these socks have ultimate four-season use.
Still, more Merino wool can sometimes lead to less durability. However, these socks buck the trend, as they are as strong as other options. This innovation and design makes Unbound Merino one of the highest-quality Merino wool brands I’ve tried!
I prefer the crew sock height when on the road since I can mix & match it with work outfits. However, ankle and no-show heights are available for those who prefer a lower profile. And, if you want to stock up on these socks, make sure to bundle. Heck, if you grab a 10-pack, you can save big!
Best Merino Wool Sock Bundles
Speaking of bundling and saving, many brands offer multi-pack socks (many with customizable colors & patterns) so you can refurbish your wardrobe. Let’s cover a solid 3-pack, 4-pack, and 5-pack that will save you big and make your workdays much easier.
Pros: Improved Durability | Simple, polished look | Excellent deal
Cons: Tight fit | Limited color options
I’m a hybrid worker; for three days, I’m in the office, and for two days, I work from home. I only need three pairs of work socks, nothing too flashy, just something fresh each day. If you have a similar schedule, grab a 3-pack of Merino wool socks for work. And one of my favorite sock bundles comes courtesy of Wool & Prince.
Despite their innovation with professional Merino wool clothing, Wool & Prince sticks to the basics with these socks. They are a durable Merino wool blend with a breathable everyday weight. No patterns and nothing special. Just solid, reliable socks.
And since you’re bundling, you get a decent amount of savings. If you look at the price on a per-pair basis, it’s definitely in the bottom third of this list. However, with a practical design, high-quality materials, and a trusted brand name, these Wool & Prince socks are on the top third of my list!
So, whether you only need work socks or want to expand your office wardrobe, Wool & Prince should be one of the leading brands. Check out the socks below or browse their Merino wool workwear collection!
Pros: Most inexpensive per pair | Classic design | Various styles
Cons: May wear out quickly | Wool percentage discrepancy
If you’re looking for a classic style (I dig the argyle), you’ve got to check out this four-pack from Bonangel. They are our most inexpensive pair of Merino wool dress socks on a per-pair basis!
Still, they don’t cost as much for a reason. Some users have reported holes and tears over time, while others claimed the Merino wool percentage varies from what is on their site. These discrepancies may sound alarming, but it’s standard for Merino wool clothing.
These socks are worth it if you’re working a standard office job. Yes, they will wear out with heavy usage. But this four-pack is hard to resist at such a low price tag. I have yet to try them, but let us know how they performed in the comments if you try them!
Pros: Super comfy | Performance design features | A pair of socks donated with each purchase
Cons: Sock height discrepancies | Durability concerns
Five stylish socks in five stylish colors, this Bombas five-pack has a sock for each day of the work week!
And while these socks may look simple, they come packed with performance features. There’s a cushioned footbed and seamless toe for maximum comfort. Plus, the knee-high height (which some users disagree with) doesn’t slide or bunch around your ankles. It stays put right there!
Yet the best part about the Bombas Merino wool dress socks is that when you get the bundle, you donate a bundle. Bombas’ One Purchased = One Donated™ program provides socks to homeless shelters worldwide. So when you get five pairs, you’re helping five people who need it.
And if that’s not the spirit of Merino wool, I don’t know what is.
Final Note About The Best Merino Wool Socks
You really can’t go wrong wearing Merino wool socks to work. They are breathable, warm, odor-resistant, comfortable, and stylish (sometimes).
We’ve covered 11 of our favorite Merino wool socks – padded performance socks, minimalist liners, and everything in between! The sheer variety of designs and styles showcases the versatility of Merino wool!
If you’re interested in getting a pair of Merino wool work socks, remember our buying tips to guide you on your selection better. Whichever one of these Merino wool socks you choose – whether for work boots, sneakers, or businesswear – make sure the style best fits you!
And, if nothing caught your eye, I understand entirely. Here are a few more pieces we’ve put together to aid you on your sock-buying journey:
- Examining The 15 Best Merino Wool Socks For Men
- Best Heavyweight Merino Wool Socks Reviewed
- Exploring The 12 Best Socks For Stinky Feet
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