Best of Balega's Running Socks

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Running enthusiasts have been known to happily spend $500 on a pair of shoes or custom insoles to get the latest technology, like a thin carbon fiber layer or fancy new type of cushioning foam. But too often, those same runners are happy to run in an old and grungy pair of socks that they've had since 1992. The right gear can make all the difference in your training and performance—and that includes socks! That's why we recommend Balega running socks, which are high quality, comfortable, and made with runners in mind. We've compiled the very best of Balega's running socks, sorted by category so you can find the perfect pair for you or the runner in your life.

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A Quick Look at Balega Running Socks

Balega creates high-quality, sustainable, and comfortable athletic socks. Their socks come in a variety of sizes, colors, and styles suitable for men, women, and children. They have a sock suitable for every athletic pursuit you can imagine. Balega is committed to using recycled materials and quality assurance is of the utmost importance to the brand. Their socks are ultra-comfortable and durable enough to last for years. Between their commitment to sustainability, their philanthropy, and their killer products, Balega is a brand we can wholeheartedly support.

Best Balega Running Socks

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What to Look for When Shopping for Balega Running Socks

Cut

The cut of a pair of socks describes where the upper edge of the sock ends on your foot or leg. Cut is important to keep in mind because if the cut you select doesn't work well with your running shoes, you could get blisters. No-show is the lowest cut sock, intended to stay beneath the upper ridge of your shoe. Low cut comes next. Quarter cut socks rise about an inch above your ankle bone. Some runners also like calf socks, which rise up to the mid-calf for extra warmth and protection.

Style

It may not necessarily contribute to a sock's function, but style is an important consideration if you hope to get some real use out of your socks. Style includes things like color palette, cut, cushioning, shape, and design.

Breathability

Any good running sock has to be breathable. A non-breathable sock can contribute to blisters, because a moist (sweaty) environment can cause chafing. Cotton and wool are two of the most absorbent and breathable materials for socks, but you could also consider some sport polyester, which is made to be extra wicking.

Durability

Socks have a lifespan just as running shoes do. To get your money's worth, be sure to invest in a pair that can hold up to many washings without getting stretched out or pilled.

Best Overall Balega Running Socks - Ultralight No Show Tab Socks

Ultralight No Show Tab Socks

SPECS

  • Material: Polyester blend
  • Height: No-show
  • Cushioning: Minimal
  • Size: S-XL sizes available
  • Moisture wicking: Yes, Drynamix technology
  • Key feature: Super-thin and comfortable

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Balega offers so many varieties of athletic socks that it can be difficult to know where to start. We've chosen the Balega Ultralight No Show Tab socks as our pick for best overall because they exemplify everything we love about Balega socks. They have the features that make this brand amazing, and they are neutral enough to work for just about anyone. One reviewer called this pair "gateway socks," and we have to agree with that assessment! The Ultralight No Shows are incredibly thin and silky—so much so that it's almost hard to tell they're on. They are made with Balega's Drynamix technology that wicks sweat away to keep you dry and blister-free. These socks are a great option for anyone who enjoys the feel of barefoot or zero drop running. They preserve the tactile feedback from your stride because of their thin construction, helping you stay comfortable and light on your feet.

We think the Ultralight sock will work for just about anyone. But this may not be the best option for you if you don't like no-show socks, or if you prefer socks with a bit more cushioning. Some folks have also found that they miss the traction of a thicker, more cushioned sock. There are also reports that this sock runs small. For the most part, Balega's four-size system (as opposed to a one-size-fits-all sock) works well, in part because these socks are so stretchy. But some people with particularly large feet may want to seek out another one of the amazing Balega socks we feature on this list.

PROS

  • Ultra-thin sock
  • Good for runners who normally skip the sock or like the tactile sensations of zero drop running shoes
  • Stylish no-show cut
  • Tab feature for blister prevention
  • Several color options

CONS

  • Too thin for some runners
  • Sizing runs small
  • Lacks traction

BUY: Ultralight No Show Tab Socks

Most Comfortable Balega Running Socks - Hidden Comfort Socks

Hidden Comfort Socks

SPECS

  • Material: Polyester blend
  • Height: No-show
  • Cushioning: High cushion
  • Size: S-XL
  • Moisture wicking: Yes
  • Key feature: Comfy cushioning

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Which style of sock feels most comfortable depends significantly on personal preference. But, we've taken into account all of the factors that make a sock desirable—material, cushioning, wicking ability, and wearability—and Balega's Hidden Comfort No Show Tab Socks are our selection for most comfortable Balega sock. These are our choice because of the extra comfortable cushioning they offer. They feel seriously luxurious, and that extra cushioning is invaluable to anyone who wants a little extra impact absorbency.

Of course, the Hidden Comfort socks aren't right for everyone. If you're really concerned about blisters, a higher rise sock like a quarter cut will be a safer bet. These socks are definitely thicker than Balega's Ultralight socks, as well, so they can get a little warmer and don't have that super-thin feeling. But if you're looking for a comfortable, high-cushion sock with the durability to last for years, the Hidden Comfort socks are a great choice.

PROS

  • Incredibly comfortable
  • No-show with tab to prevent blisters
  • Extra cushioning for higher impact sports
  • Several color options

CONS

  • No-show style may cause blisters for some
  • Not as moisture-wicking as thinner styles

BUY: Hidden Comfort Socks

Best Balega Running Socks for Women - Women's Enduro No Show Socks

Women's Enduro No Show Socks

SPECS

  • Material: Polyester blend
  • Height: No-show
  • Cushioning: Medium
  • Size: S-L
  • Moisture wicking: Yes
  • Key feature: Arch support

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Most of Balega's socks are unisex and therefore they work well for both men and women. But female athletes do have different preferences and needs, and these socks are made with women in mind. The Balega Women's Enduro No Show Socks have just a little bit of compression, as well as arch support.

If you have flat feet, fallen arches, or prefer a sock to pair with a less supportive shoe, this is the pair for you. These may just be the Goldilocks sock—not too thin, not too thick, and just the right amount of cushioning for impact absorption, but not so much that it would bulk up the sock. Like all of Balega's socks, these are of fantastic quality and should last through many wears.

We've selected this sock because we think it will work for most women's athletic needs, but it won't be right for everyone. If you prefer a super-thin or super-thick sock, you'll want to check out one of our other selections. We would classify this firmly as a medium-thickness sock, but it's still thicker than non-athletic socks, so bear that in mind if the Enduro No Show is your first pair of running socks. Overall, though, this neutral, comfortable athletic sock should suit most women.

PROS

  • Arch support
  • Just the right amount of cushioning
  • Medium thickness
  • Great quality

CONS

  • Thicker than non-athletic socks
  • Slightly compressive support may be uncomfortable on sensitive feet

BUY: Women's Enduro No Show Socks

Best Balega Running Socks for Men - Men's Enduro Low Cut Socks

Men's Enduro Low Cut Socks

SPECS

  • Material: Polyester blend
  • Height: Low cut
  • Cushioning: Medium
  • Size: S-XL
  • Moisture wicking: Yes
  • Key feature: Arch support

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Our pick for this category is the men's alternative to our pick for women: the Enduro Low Cut Socks. These socks have the same features we love about the Women's Enduro No Show Socks; the fabric of the sock is tightly woven, lightweight, and breathable. They are cushioned without being uncomfortably thick. We also have to mention the arch support these socks have. They're just a little bit compressive, which supports your arches. This feature is so helpful for folks with flat feet, especially if your shoes don't give you enough support, or your arches cause you pain. The Drynamix material blend keeps these socks breathable even as the extra cushion adds thickness.

We know the low-cut look doesn't work for everyone, so for men who like the Enduro design but want something a bit more traditional, this sock is sold in the taller quarter and crewcuts. It's worth noting that the popularity of this sock means that it's occasionally out of stock on the Balega website, so check Amazon or other retailers if you're in a time crunch. The color options for the men's styles are significantly more limited than the women's styles, but they do have several neutral colors to choose from. Overall, the Enduro Low Cut Socks are a great choice for any man looking for a sock that is supportive, comfortable, and athletic.

PROS

  • Low cut is a good alternative to no-show
  • Just the right amount of cushioning
  • Not too thick
  • Moisture-wicking and quick-drying
  • Arch support

CONS

  • So popular that it's often out of stock
  • Limited color options

BUY: Men's Enduro Low Cut Socks

Best Blister Resistant Balega Running Socks - UltraGlide No Show Socks

UltraGlide No Show Socks

SPECS

  • Material: Polyester blend
  • Height: No-show
  • Cushioning: Low to medium
  • Size: S-XL
  • Moisture wicking: Yes
  • Key feature: Anti-blister

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Blisters are the hated enemy of any avid runner. A particularly nasty blister can keep you from your normal training or signal the untimely end of an expensive new pair of running shoes. If you can't seem to avoid blisters, give these Balega UltraGlide No Show Socks a try. Don't worry—they may be no-show style, but they still have the tab at the heel, which protects your achilles area from friction and blisters. Preventing blisters is all about avoiding heat, friction, and moisture, all of which make blisters more likely. That's why the UltraGlide socks are tight fitting and thin. They cling to your foot naturally, so there isn't any shifting around as you exercise. They're also incredibly moisture-wicking, so sweat doesn't accumulate in certain areas and cause blisters. Reviewers rave about how comfortable and light these feel, and we think you'll love them, too.

It's important that anti-blister socks are thin because thicker socks have a tendency to slide around more, which can contribute to blisters. Balega classifies the cushion in the UltraGlide socks as low to medium. These socks are still very comfortable, but if your primary goal is finding a cushioned sock, you may want to check out Balega's Hidden Comfort socks instead. They're also made to be tight fitting, which some people personally find irritating for exercise. But if you're looking for a thin, comfortable sock that will keep you blister free in nearly any shoe, we highly recommend the Balega UltraGlide socks.

PROS

  • Super moisture wicking
  • Comfortable yet thin
  • Tab prevents heel blisters
  • Keep feet cool
  • They don't slip

CONS

  • Too tight for some people
  • May pill if care instructions are not followed

BUY: UltraGlide No Show Socks

Best Compression Balega Running Socks - Support Quarter Socks

Support Quarter Socks

SPECS

  • Material: Polyester blend
  • Height: Quarter cut (several inches above ankle bone)
  • Cushioning: Medium
  • Size: S-XL
  • Moisture wicking: Yes
  • Key feature: Compression and arch support

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We know it can be difficult to find compression socks that don't look, well, ugly. Being quarter cut socks, these aren't exactly the most stylish pair you'll ever wear. However, the design is flattering and comfortable, and they come in several colors. Balega's Support Quarter Socks are a great choice for anyone who prefers a tighter, compressive fit and arch support to their socks. A little extra compression may also be helpful for anyone with circulation issues or who plans to travel for long periods.

Regardless of your reason, these are some of the coolest athletic compression socks we've found. The higher cut protects your legs from UV rays, blisters, and scratches from debris while hiking or trail running. The Support Quarter socks also have ankle support pads (extra cushioning around the ankle bone) and silicone grips on the sole to help with traction. The arch support is great for folks who have pain due to fallen arches or who just want a little extra support boost.

Unfortunately, these are one of the more expensive pairs of socks Balega makes. But for what it's worth, reviewers are overwhelmingly satisfied with the quality and value of these socks. Similarly, the specialty features like the compression, height, and silicone grips may not suit every runner's needs. But if you're looking for a comfortable, compressive sock, this is the pair for you.

PROS

  • Ankle support pads
  • Silicone grips
  • Comfortable compression
  • Quarter cut suited for hiking, trail running, etc.
  • Breathable

CONS

  • Expensive
  • Specialty features may not suit every runner

BUY: Support Quarter Socks

FAQs About Balega Running Socks


What kind of socks are best for running?

The socks that are best for running will depend on each individual runner's needs and preferences. We really like the brand Balega because their socks are comfortable and durable. Try the socks on with your running shoes to test whether they cover the sensitive skin on your feet to prevent blisters.

Are Balega socks good?

Yes! Balega socks are great quality. Balega takes pride in their quality assurance efforts. They are constantly refining their designs to best suit runners' needs and offer the latest technology. They also use recycled materials in many of their socks.

Do Balega socks run small or large?

Unlike most socks, which are one size fits all, Balega socks come in four sizes (small through extra-large) so you can find the pair that fits you perfectly. Most people don't have any issue with this system. Balega also has a helpful fit finder tool on their website.

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