Can you wear cowboy boots without socks? I’ll defer this argument to Erica.
Erica, a New York City-based writer, is always on the lookout for pieces that are the perfect combination of attractive and functional. She scored a major coup when she found a pair of silver sequined cowboy boots on sale for about $80, which she wore almost every day for months.
But one day, her feet started hurting so badly that she couldn’t even stand up straight. She didn’t have time to go to the doctor, so she tried some home remedies, like taking aspirin and supposedly “cure-all” Neosporin. Nothing worked… until she finally took off her boots and put on a pair of socks at night. “My feet felt great in the morning!” she said.
And for those who believe it’s just not possible to wear cowboy boots with socks, Erica has this to say: “I think they are very comfortable with socks; even my podiatrist concurs.”
It’s best to wear socks with cowboy boots. Leather boots don’t breathe, so they trap moisture, rub against your feet, and cause blisters if they fit improperly. Socks wick moisture away from your feet, prevent chafing, and protect your bare feet from the leather itself.
If you go without socks in your cowboy boots, you could end up with smelly feet and possible foot infections. Socks keep your feet dry, prevent blisters and ward off—you guessed what’s coming—Athlete’s foot.
When you wear boots without socks, not only will your feet become sore—especially if the boots have not been broken in—but the insoles of your shoes will degrade faster.
Fortunately, this article will teach you all there is to know about picking out the perfect socks for your favorite pair of boots, so you can walk tall knowing your feet are cozy and safe.
What Socks to Wear with Cowboy Boots?
When wearing cowboy boots, choose knee-high socks with wide elastic cuffs. For short boots, choose ribbed or stretchy socks that aren’t visible above the tops of your boots.
Men typically wear cowboy boots with jeans or pants over the boots. When styling cowboy boots in this manner, ensure the socks come up past the bottom of your calf; otherwise, they will slide down and become uncomfortable.
Ladies can accessorize their cowboy boots in a variety of ways. If a woman wears jeans tucked in or over the boots, she should wear knee-high socks with wide elastic cuffs. These will stay up and provide comfort all day!
If you’re wearing shorts or a skirt with socks, you probably don’t want to see those socks rising above your boots. In this case, it would be better to wear ankle socks or crew socks (which come up halfway to your calves). Ribbed or elastic-enhanced socks will be most effective for this purpose.
Copper Feet Knee High Compression Sock Bamboo, Water Knee-High Sock
When choosing your socks, you should opt for fabrics that wick moisture away from your feet, like wool and cotton blends.
I’m a big fan of Merino wool socks because they keep my feet warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Natural Merino wool has an innate ability to wick away moisture and remain virtually scent-free. (They don’t typically get smelly after being on your feet all day!)
When I’m looking for a new pair of socks, I check out these online retailers. Each has what I need at the best price around!
Types of Socks
Here’s a visual guide to the different types of socks.
Knee-high socks are my go-to footwear accessory. They sit right at knee level, just above the calf muscle, and give your skin a break from the shafts of your boots.
When choosing knee-high socks, you should make sure they’re made of cotton, spandex, and polyester—materials that make them thick yet breathable.
These socks will keep your feet warm in the winter, cool in the summer, and fashionable all year round.
If you don’t want your socks to be visible when wearing boots, crew socks are the answer. They are ideal for 16-inch cowboy or buckaroo boots, prevent chafing, and wick moisture away from your feet.
Crew socks come in a variety of materials, such as cotton, polyester, spandex, and nylon. These ingredients make them thick enough not to rub against your feet and allow them to breathe.
If you are looking for minimalist socks for short boots, consider ankle socks. Choose silk or bamboo varieties for the softest feel on your feet and legs.
While selecting ankle socks to wear with your shortie boots, ensure they fit snugly over your feet and end at the narrowest parts of your legs so they don’t slide down at the slightest pull.
These socks should provide the moisture-wicking service you seek while staying hidden from view.
If you’re going to wear socks, wear the kind that won’t make your feet itch—like ones made from lightweight wool, cotton, or a mix of both. Not only will they keep your feet warm, but they’re moisture-wicking and anti-microbial, too. They come in various heights, so you can choose a sock just right for your activity level.
I wear my Merino wool socks hiking, riding horses, and around the house—even when I go out dancing on a Saturday night. I get a lot of comments about them from other guys who are jealous that they don’t have such great-looking feet.
Men’s Guide for Best Socks To Wear With Cowboy Boots
Comfortable, well-made socks are a must when you wear cowboy boots. The best ones for men include:
- Wrangler Men’s Western Boot Socks
- Fox River Men’s Wick Dry Military Mid-calf Socks
- Hanes Men’s Over the Calf Tube Socks.
The ones listed above are all manufactured from high-quality fabrics and are able to offer the protection and comfort your feet need every day. Now let’s get into the details of each one.
Best Overall Socks to Wear with Cowboy Boots
As you wear your cowboy boots all day long, you may feel hot and uncomfortable. But the Wrangler Men’s Western Boot Socks can resolve this issue forever!
These socks are made of a synthesis of high-quality materials to help your feet breathe: 80% polyester, 17% nylon, and 3% spandex.
Each component of the socks—the fabrics, the reinforced heels, and the snug elastic bands—contributes to their snug fit and durability.
Best Alternative Socks for Cowboy Boots
The Fox River Men’s Wick Dry Military Mid-calf Socks aren’t just your average pair of socks.
These socks were originally designed for the military but pair wonderfully with all sorts of cowboy boots. They are made of special fibers that can keep your feet warm in the saddle and dry even after walking miles across rivers, swamps, and snow.
Fabricated using advanced technologies, these socks draw away moisture to keep feet dry and free from bacterial build-up, which causes infections and odor.
Best Budget Socks for Cowboy Boots
Hanes Men’s Over the Calf Tube Socks are a budget-friendly choice for men seeking durability, comfort, and support in a sock.
They’re made with 55% polyester, 44% cotton, and 1% spandex for maximum breathability and sturdiness. If you need socks for riding that won’t fall down, hurt your pocket, or make your feet sweat, buy these.
Women’s Guide for Best Socks to Wear for Cowboy Boots
Are you a woman wanting to look fabulous and comfortable while wearing your cowboy boots? Give the following socks a try:
- Wrangler Women’s Ladies Horseshoe Boot Socks
- Wrangler Women’s Western Boot Socks
- Under Armour Unisex Adult Tactical Heatgear
All the socks recommended above provide competitive levels of comfort, protection, and durability. Here’s my take on them.
Women’s Wrangler Horseshoe Boot Socks Men’s Wrangler Ultra Dri Boot Socks
Best Over All Socks for Cowboy Boots
I recommend Wrangler Women’s Horseshoe Boot Socks to anyone scouting for the best socks for cowboy boots.
These socks are knitted with 75% Polyester, 23% Nylon, and 2% Spandex. They are comfortable and durable and give your feet the cushion they desire. With various colors and patterns, these socks offer great value for money and will never leave you feeling shy or underdressed. Check out the men’s version here.
Made with moisture-wicking technology, these socks prevent moisture buildup so your feet stay and you stay relaxed. They’re necessary addition to your cowboy boots, whether you’ll be working at the ranch or having a long day in the office.
Best Alternative Socks for Cowboy Boots
You wouldn’t want to suffer blisters during a stay-at-home party or when you’re just lounging around with your cowboy boots on. Keep your feet looking good and feel comfortable anytime with the Wrangler Women’s Western Boot Socks.
Women’s Wrangler Western Boot Sock Men’s Wrangler Seamless Toe Western Boot Socks
These socks are made of 80% polyester, 17% nylon, and 3% spandex, a high-quality blend that makes them soft on your skin.
The socks have seamless toes that reduce foot irritation and are knitted with superior yarn durable enough for heavy use.
Best Budget Socks For Cowboy Boots
I always use high-quality socks when working in the saddle. The Under Armour Unisex-Adult Tactical Heatgear are my best choice because they are not only suitable for my cowboy boots (from ankle boots to 16-inch ones) but also affordable at the same time.
They do not restrict your movement and are made of high-grade materials that efficiently protect your skin from the shafts of the boots.
Best Socks for your Cowboy Boots: More Options
Under Armour All season Wool Boot Sock
When the temperature starts to drop, you need to think about layering. These Under Armour socks are an excellent option for keeping your feet warm and dry during winter hikes. Made from wool, these crew-cut socks sit perfectly on the calves and keep feet snug on any cold day.
Carhartt All-Terrain Boot Socks
Carhartt All-Terrain Socks are the perfect counterparts to your work boots. These socks have cushioning, anatomically shaped footbeds that ensure your feet breathe and stay comfortable at work.
Their fast-dry technology keeps your feet from getting wet, while their moisture-wicking properties prevent chafing, and blisters and reduce chances of foot odor.
Darn Tough UltraLight Merino Wool Boot Socks
The Darn Tough brand has a reputation for making socks you can stand on. Now, this boisterous sock is made from ultra-light Merino wool, which makes it chosen even for the most active of lifestyles.
This sock is still lightweight and breathable but with a denser weave to wick away moisture. For those who love hiking or working in the yard, these socks will make the perfect gift since they’re breathable and comfortable enough to withstand any weather.
Dan Post Over-Calf Cowboy Certified DP Lites Crew
If comfort means a lot to you and you want it all the time, you need Dan Post Over-Calf Cowboy Certified Socks.
These unique socks are manufactured with extra care to help your feet breathe in the heat of work so they (your feet) don’t feel irritated or sweaty.
Unisex Under Armour Carhartt All-Terrain Boot Sock Darn Tough Merino WoolWool Boot Socks Boot Sock
How to Keep my Socks Up in Cowboy Boots?
If you’ve ever worn boots and had your socks slide down your legs, you know how annoying and uncomfortable this can be. Fortunately, there are a few easy ways to keep your socks from falling down when wearing cowboy boots.
When choosing socks, go for knee-high ones with wide elastic bands or ribbed socks with a reasonable percentage of spandex (usually 1 to 3%). These will hug your feet firmly. Either way, look for those containing cotton, wool, acrylic, or a blend of any two or all three of these materials.
For women who wear short skirts or shorts with cowboy boots, knee-high socks may not be the right choice. In this case, choose a pair of well-fitting socks with ribbed or elastic uppers that provide even pressure along your legs.
Because knee-high socks will end at a spot at or below the widest parts of your calves, they’re more likely to slide down your legs during the day.
Final thoughts: can you wear cowboy boots without socks?
Ok, so… Can you wear cowboy boots without socks?
The answer is no. Socks will help protect your feet and your boots. They will wick away moisture, keep bacteria out of your boots and prevent blisters from forming on your feet.
I recommend you wear knee-high socks with your cowboy boots. They keep your ankles warm, and they won’t slide down while you carry out your daily activities. You’ll want a pair with strong elastic bands around the top, which will keep the socks in place.
So here you have some basic recommendations on what different types of socks to wear with cowboy boots. We hope we’ve covered enough ground for you, but if not, feel free to send in any additional questions you might still have or post a comment to share your experiences with the sock/cowboy boot duo.