Cotton is Rotton
by Coach Jill Csillag
I know advertisers want us to believe that cotton is the “Fabric of our Lives”, but I feel differently on the subject. Cotton does have its place in our wardrobe, but your socks should NOT be one of those places.
Why, you ask?
For starters, did you know there are over 250,000 sweat glands in the bottom of your foot? That’s a lot of sweating that takes place, even if you don’t realize it’s happening.
Cotton is made of natural fibers, which is great; however, these natural fibers aren’t antimicrobial by nature, so dampness and bacteria can grow and multiply rapidly in this arena. This not only equals STINK, but also sends an invitation to blisters, chafing, and fungus to join the party. Have you ever developed a very painful blister from a damp sock? Not my idea of a good time!
Better yet, have you ever taken off a pair of cotton socks and realized you had to literally peel them off? That’s dampness and other nasties making their appearance.
Even worse, after removing said sock, it can develop a stiffness or crust when left in a bundle. Any Mom who has done laundry knows exactly what I am talking ‘bout. Gross.
Cotton socks also stretch out over time, which causes them to bunch up and slip down while inside your shoes. Annoying!
What type of socks should you be wearing?
The answer is simple, really. Look for synthetic blends; different brands have their own blends and names, such as “drynamix, rayon, polyester” to name a few. The important thing to look for on the label is NO COTTON, not one percentage.
One of my favorite socks is made out of Merino wool. No, this isn’t the type of wool from Grandma’s closet that has you itching merely by looking at it.
Merino wool is a totally natural material that is harvested and processed in such a way to remove any itch factor. Because it’s a natural product that wicks moisture away from the foot, no bacteria can fester and grow on this type of fabric. (Check out Merino socks here.)
The best part of a merino wool sock is that you don’t have to wash it after every wearing. I swear, it’s true! Give it a try – I simply remove my socks and let them air dry, and then give them a *sniff test* before donning them again. I’ve yet to encounter any smell, and I have the scent abilities of a bloodhound.
My favorite brand of Merio wool socks are Smartwool. Yes, I know they are pricey but I promise these are worth it. They last a very long time, and if you or (*ahem*) a loved one have a problem with foot odor, these are the socks to purchase! Check them out here.
Ditch those cotton socks! Your feet will thank you, as will your loved ones! Your feet will be much healthier and smell much sweeter!
Tomorrow: The pain of bunions, corns, and plantar warts.
Have a question for Coach Jill? Ask it in the comments below!
Also check out these posts: A Guide to Finding the Best Athletic Footwear for You, Common Foot Injuries and How to Treat Them, 100 lb Weight Loss: How Did You DO It?
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