The Complete Style Guide to Socks for Men

There was a time when a man’s socks drawer was only filled with classic white tube socks with stripes. But today, the modern man reserves an entire section in the wardrobe for different coloured and textured socks for every outfit and occasion. Such is the significance of these seemingly inconspicuous pieces of clothing, that they are often the point of focus of a man’s outfit. Moreover, the choice of socks is commonly seen as a reflection of a man’s dedication towards achieving perfection and his attention to detail. When chosen patiently and correctly, socks can help a man look classy and stylish. However, choosing the perfect pair of socks is easier said than done. With such a wide range of designs, materials, lengths, styles, and colours to choose from, it is always a task to select an ideal pair of socks to suit your personality and dressing. But here at Odd Co, we are dedicated to helping our customers find their most beloved pair of socks every time. So here’s a complete style guide to socks to help you make the right selection.


Socks are probably one of the few items of clothing that come in different styles for every occasion and purpose. Below we discuss some of the most popular types.

  • Dress Socks – Mostly made using lightweight knit fabric, dress socks are worn with formal clothes as part of evening wear or with business suits, wedding tuxedos, etc. They are usually available in darker shades of black, brown, grey, and brown and are usually calf-length. The only thing to ensure when choosing your dress socks is that they must be of the same colour as the trouser.
  • Sports Socks – Sports socks are generally made of cotton or stretchable spandex fibres to offer maximum comfort, breathability, and flexibility at the time of performing physical sports activities. They can be ankle-length, knee-length or calf-length based on your preference and requirements.
  • Work Socks – Since these socks are meant to be worn at work, they are made using durable and elastic materials and are available in a variety of colours and patterns suitable for everyday workwear.
  • Casual Socks – Casual socks are meant to be worn with casual everyday clothes. They need to be flexible and comfortable and can have colourful and attractive patterns and prints.

Apart from these categories, there are several other types of socks for different purposes, such as Support Socks, Boot Socks, Compression Socks, Leg Warmer Socks, Liner Socks, etc.


The material also influences the selection process. The occasion, outfit, weather, and purpose, must all be considered before selecting the right material. Some of the most common materials used are as follows:

  • Cotton – Perhaps the most popular material when it comes to socks, cotton is primarily used in sports and formal socks. Cotton socks are a permanent feature in every man’s wardrobe because they are lightweight, durable, and cost-effective than many other types.
  • Wool – A favourite material when it comes to socks, wool has been used in making socks from the very beginning. Woollen socks are ideal for use in winter as well as summer as they can keep the feet warm in cold weather and cool when the temperatures are higher. They are often blended with rayon for a smooth and soft finish.
  • Cashmere – Cashmere is generally used in luxury socks. They offer super-softness and maximum comfort in all seasons. However, they can easily tear or lose their shape. Hence, they need to be washed with hands and taken care of properly.
  • Silk – Silk socks are mostly used for formal occasions and black tie events. They are often blended with wool to make them soft and warm and are the most expensive types of socks even though they are not as long-lasting as other varieties.


Want your socks to show or want to appear sockless? The good news is, there are all kinds of sock lengths available to suit different looks. Here’s a look at some of the lengths you can choose:

  • Over the Calf Socks – These traditional socks are what started it all. However, they have somewhat fallen out of favour since. Knee-high or over the calf socks are the best options for people who prefer keeping their socks from pooling around their ankles. No matter how outdated the style, over the calf socks, are comfortable and great for wearing during winters.
  • Mid-Calf Socks – The most popular length of socks, the mid-calf style is the most preferred among all young and middle-aged men. They look and feel good with formal shoes, loafers, sneakers, boots, and almost all other footwear and are available in all colours, patterns, designs and materials.
  • Ankle Socks – Mainly used for sports and while performing physical activity, ankle socks sit on or above the ankle and are just about visible. Although they are often worn fashionably, their primary purpose is to protect the heel and ankles from chafing.
  • NoShow Socks – Want to go sockless? Put on no-show socks instead! They are brilliant for keeping your feet comfortable and dry and make you look stylish at the same time. While they can be worn with most footwear, it is best to avoid wearing them with boots, sandals, and high-top shoes as they may allow chafing and cause blisters.

To Match or Not Match

Gone are the days when matching socks were a style statement. Today, men like to experiment and look different wherever possible. Hence, odd socks have become the new rage! They are perfect for making a statement and can help you stand out from the crowd. Odd socks may not be suitable for all occasions, but they make a fashionable and eccentric addition to your socks drawer.

Socks are an essential part of your outfit and can enhance your appearance if worn correctly. Hence, it is vital to include all types of socks in your wardrobe to go with all your looks. For the best ideas and inspiration for fashionable odd and matching socks, check out the Odd Co collection.