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A Brief History Of Socks

What comes to mind when you think of socks? Warmth, comfort, durability, safety? Socks are something we normally don’t think of because it’s just part of our lifestyle. Have you ever thought about what life was like before we created socks? If you have ever thought about the history of socks then this is the blog for you!

The thought of not putting socks on while we head out to work or play isn’t even an option. We reach in our drawers, pull out our socks without a thought, and head out to our daily routines. In today’s era, we might not be thinking about not having socks, but what style, comfort, or color we are wearing that day. Let us take a look at how life was before socks.

The History Of Socks Long Ago

Earliest known sock still surviving. Photo by David Jackson, CC BY-SA 2.0 uk,

An exceptionally long time ago the Homo-Neandertals were hunters and gathers. They were shoeless and sockless. They stumbled upon the idea of using sticks and hides from animals to keep their feet from either getting cold, cut, or even burnt while gathering. This is something we don’t think about because we have been wearing socks for centuries. Think of how awful it would be to not wear feet coverings while playing, hunting, or gathering food. Even with the makeshift ideas, they came up with for shoes, socks in today’s age are critical because our shoes without socks would cause chaffing, infections, tiredness, and extreme tenderness. 

Oddly enough, Egyptians and Greeks came up with the idea of socks. Although it was time-consuming, the animal fur and crafted socks quickly became a staple because they realized that this would protect their feet from the elements. 

Moving forward some very many years, during times of war, many soldiers died as a result of trench foot which is a medical condition to feet being exposed to cold, damp, and unsanitary conditions, something that often affects homeless people of today. It makes you appreciate the socks you have in that sock drawer. 

How The History Of Socks Went From Staple to Fashion

An early Egyptian Sock - 12th century

Public Domain,

As socks were being invented for necessity, they soon evolved into fashion for the rich. The Egyptians and Greeks were creating socks that were only made for those that could afford to hire someone to craft the socks. This showed their power and glory because common people did not own and could not make socks of silk and wool.

The trade system helped create access to the quality of sock material. The analysis of Egyptian artifacts show that the Pharaoh’s and upper classes of Egypt used a common wool threading system and some socks had the big toe separated from the other four. Think about growing up in times of the past where a sock had no name other than foot covering. The fad of separating toes started in the last 10 years, and that little trick was created over 4000 years ago! This was the evolution of staple to fashion. 

With the latest inventions of mixes of materials of blends for socks, from silk to bamboo, the fashion industry for socks has become massive. Socks are no longer just a necessity, but something we seek out for comfortability and our own personal style.

What Socks Mean to Us Today

bright blue pair of boardroom socks.

Socks are critical under normal circumstances. Those normal circumstances are shoes. We don’t really think about not wearing socks with shoes. Blisters, chaffing, infection, and being uncomfortable are not something any of us want to deal with after a long day of play, or work.

Socks have become a statement with their unique style and diversity. From funky colors to solids, stripes and designs, evolution in the sock era has taken on a whole new meaning. Not only do socks provide the comfort, durability, and are a necessity for our daily activities, they complete our fashion needs.

Now you know the history of socks why not invest in a great pair of premium socks that look awesome, are comfortable to wear and are durable too!


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