If you’ve been hiking throughout your life and have always used liner socks, you may want to consider using them without another pair of socks.
There are plenty of benefits to using liner socks, especially if you go hiking a few times each month. Many people have used a pair at some point but they haven’t considered only wearing them with their hiking shoes or boots.
Wearing Liner Socks as Standalone Socks
Many hikers and backpackers choose to wear liner socks by themselves without any other layers. It might be more comfortable and light to wear liner socks by themselves while hiking. The preference of most hikers is to wear them on the outside or inside of another pair of socks to help prevent blisters and moisture.
What Are Liner Socks?
Liner socks are very thin and light socks that are made to be used as a liner to another pair of socks.
They are most often worn underneath other socks by hikers and backpackers. Some added benefits are reducing the moisture away from your feet and adding a more comfortable layer in between rougher material.
A pair of boots that are slightly too large can lead to problems down the road. Wearing two layers in loose boots can help fill up any extra space and tighten them to your feet. Adding some padding inside your boots helps to prevent any rubbing that would normally happen when they aren’t tight enough.
Liner socks are often made from the following materials:
If you haven’t tried liner socks or are curious about the difference that they make, we’ll be going over some pros and cons down below.
Pros Of Liner Socks
By now you should know what liner socks are, but why are they important? Why should you consider wearing them or wearing them by themselves?
As it turns out there are two major benefits that you’ll notice right away.
- They help prevent blisters
- They add comfort to your feet
It’s different for every hiker but these two reasons are why we would recommend for every hiker to try a pair.
1. Prevent Blisters
One of the benefits of wearing liner socks is the protection that you get to help prevent blisters. If you’ve ever been hiking for a weekend trip and came back with blisters on your feet or ankles, a pair of liner socks would have helped.
The two ways they help is by reducing friction and preventing moisture in your boots.
Hiking shoes and boots often have issues with friction. Cutting down the amount of friction will lead to fewer blisters and prevent soreness on your feet.
The stiff design of boots causes your feet to rub up against the material and create enough friction to end with blisters. If your boots are too big for your feet this will increase the amount of friction as well.
Adding one more layer of material between your foot and the boot helps reduce the friction. It can help by adding softer material as well as filling extra space in the shoe.
2. Cover Itchy Wool Socks
Some socks are just not comfortable. I’ve had issues in the past where I could feel the scratchy material rubbing up against my feet.
If you have a pair of hiking socks that are uncomfortable to wear, throw on a pair of liner socks and notice the problem disappears.
Cons Of Liner Socks
Compared to the pros we couldn’t find many reasons not to use liner socks. Overall they provide too much value to not wear them. To be picky here are a couple of downsides to frequently wearing linear socks.
1. Issues With Fitting
The real big issue with wearing liner socks happens if your boots are comfortable and fit very well. If your hiking boots or hiking shoes are already tight, wearing more socks will only make them tighter. Even though most liner socks are very thin and don’t take much room, they can still fill up any remaining space in boots.
To make sure you have enough room try a pair on with your normal hiking socks and boots. If they seem too tight you might be able to get away with just the liner socks on your feet.
For your next pair of boots, use this guide to find the right size!
2. Wear Down Quickly
Because the material for these socks is much thinner than other hiking socks, they wear down very quickly. Thankfully these socks aren’t too expensive, but it’s something to consider. Especially if you are an avid hiker who doesn’t want to spend additional money.
We don’t consider liner’s essential for hiking so it’s up to your preference on whether or not they are worth it.
Do You Need To Wear Liner Socks By Themselves?
It’s not necessary to wear liner socks without another pair, in fact they are designed to be worn in combination with other socks. There are numerous benefits that liner socks provide, and thankfully you still get them if you don’t wear them alone.
We hope you learned something new about liner socks today. As we’ve gone over, the pros for wearing them far outweigh the cons. Even wearing liner socks by themselves can be useful in the right circumstance.
If you haven’t worn liner socks by themselves, we say try it out on your next easy hike. You might find that you prefer them alone instead of with another pair of heavier socks!