How To Take Care Of Merino Wool Socks?

wool socks

If you are a longtime reader of this website, you know how much I love my merino wool socks. I think they are an excellent year-round option and are extremely durable and moisture-wicking, which is a must for socks.

But where people often run into trouble is taking care of merino. They think that merino wool socks are difficult or impossible to care for, and have zero knowledge of washing, drying, and cleaning them.

In this guide, I will be revealing everything I know about cleaning and taking care of them, and I will answer your every question in this matter.

So, how to take care of merino wool socks?

Merino wool socks can be hand-washed, machine-washed, and tumble-dried. But they really do not need to be washed that often because of merino wool’s natural antimicrobial nature that prevents the socks from stinky.

If you want some more information, don’t worry, because I will be talking about all the different aspects of caring for merino wool socks in great detail below.

Can You Wash Merino Wool Socks?

Merino wool socks can be washed and should be washed. They can be both hand-washed and machine-washed. Washing them will not cause shrinking as most merino wool socks also have elastane in them, which sort of acts like an agent against shrinking.

Merino wool itself is known to not shrink much in the wash, but it really depends from garment to garment. However, with socks, it can pretty much never shrink due to the high amount of elastane in the mix.

But still, if you are unsure about washing your socks, check the care label on them to see whether they can be washed or not.

How To Wash Merino Wool Socks?

There are primarily two different routes you could go with washing merino wool socks – the first is machine washing them and the second is hand washing them.

Machine washing them is pretty simple, but a little bit risky. Some inferior qualities of merino wool tend to shrink a bit is washed in warm water, but that can be easily taken care of if you use cold water. Also for added safety, turn your socks inside out before you throw them in the washing machine. Use mild detergent.

Hand washing merino socks is also simple, but it requires a bit more effort. Use cold water and mild detergent to do the actual washing. Make sure that you thoroughly clean the socks. Also, in this method, there is practically no chance for your socks to shrink.

Just don’t wring the socks, as that can also lead to them stretching out.

How Often Should You Wash Your Merino Wool Socks?

Unless you are on a hiking or camping trip, you should wash your socks every day. But if you are in nature and don’t have the access to a washing machine, merino wool socks can go up to 5 wears without washing.

Depending on the quality of the merino wool on the sock, you can even go up to 10 wears, but I don’t really recommend that.

Socks made from merino wool do not smell because they have antimicrobial properties. They take the odor-causing bacteria and absorb it, which prevents them from staying or spreading over the rest of the surface of the socks.

Thus, you can wear the same pair of socks for multiple days without stinking up the place or messing up your feet.

How To Dry Merino Wool Socks?

The best way to dry merino wool socks would be to lay them flat out on a table under a ceiling fan. They should never be hang-dried, as that can lead to unwanted stretching. Most modern merino socks can also be tumble-dried.

But to ensure that your socks don’t get completely destroyed in the dryer, you would need to ensure a few things. First, check the label or the manufacturer’s website to know if they can be tumble-dried or not.

Once you figure that part out, the only thing that you really need to keep in mind is the heat setting on the dryer. Set it to “low” or whatever the equivalent to low heat is on your particular dryer.

Even if they can be tumble-dried, I still advise people to lay them flat to dry. I can personally attest that this method is the safest way to dry your merino wool socks. And it doesn’t take that long either. Give it an hour or so and your socks would be completely dry.

Final Remarks

Merino wool socks are really easy to take care of because they do not require a lot of washing. And when they do, you can just throw them in a washing machine. These socks can also be tumble-dried relatively safely.

This is why I recommend everyone to get some merino wool socks in their closet. They are going to work for you in the extreme winters, the extreme summers, and everything in between. If you don’t know which ones to buy, here’s a list of the best merino wool socks in the market right now.

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