Ode to, and plea for, squeezeless, cuffless socks, this time

I wouldn’t say I’m picky. I’m constrained. Cuffed socks can diminish my circulation at best, and because of Raynaud’s Phenomenon, under such circumstances my circulation can (and will probably) stop altogether, even in warm weather. So, insisting on cuffless socks is a matter of making sure I keep my feet.

I have certainly tried cutting cuffs off of socks. Uncut socks can last a long time, but with the cut they just don’t seem to want to last long at all, and become a mess in the wash and even while I’m wearing them, in my experience.

I meant that you would probably not like my solution — I meant well. Looks like you have some better choices — glad for you! Stay well!

Ecstasy. And I haven’t even received them yet! A tiny place called Goosefeet makes very customizable goosedown “socks” (that the reviews refer to as booties, although they have a different product called over-booties) and is very approachable about making tweaks - in my case, leaving off the elastic at the top. Nothing but 5 star reviews. I will figure out my own velcro strap solution - if I even find that need that. These are for evenings and bedtime.

@Stephanie_Y , sorry to say, the Bombas were too constricting. I got the style you showed. One hour, and I had angry red constriction marks.

I will say, this past week, despite trying to increase my walking enough that I would improve the health of my feet, I’ve discovered that even the wool socks (the brand) that I’ve relied on for 20+ years are giving me problems I never used to have. Clearly I’ve reached some new stage. My feet have an unusual history, I don’t know if they’re staging a protest that I’ve lived longer than they were led to believe they would have to serve.

Not to be facetious but you you could take up knitting and make your own, customizing the ankle size to what fits you best. I’m sorry to hear you had such a disappointing experience, but when I’ve read the online reviews there’s been a vast range of experiences despite the high star rank. Bombas does say they will take them back if you’re dissatisfied - maybe another pair will fit better although consistency would be much better.
Also have you checked with your podiatrist? They may have access to brands that are just what you need.

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So, again, knitting leaves too much imprint of the stitches, unless the gauge is so tiny I couldn’t possibly make them, with my gnarled hands (family Thang, not diabetes).

Yes, I just talked to my podiatrist last Friday, showed her the socks I am most in need of replacing, and she says she fields that question about that exact style of sock at least 3 times a week, and it seems manufacturers, plural, stopped making them years ago. Another case of, They don’t make 'em like They used to.

I talked to a friend of mine who specializes in felting, but she said there’s a reason felters don’t make socks, which was the potential issue I wondered about when I wrote her: they get misshapen when you pull them on over your heel, and don’t return to the desired shape. Bummer, I was fantasizing about just wadding wool onto my feet until it was so thick that cold couldn’t penetrate it. Ha, do like the rumored pioneers did, and sew themselves into their union jacks in Fall and cut them off in Spring. Just felt my feet in and cut the boots off when the average temp is above freezing again.

Wait - don’t I remember hearing once that the Lapps wear felted boots? Oooh yes… and don’t they look just right if you can find them, although the ones I fantasized about plastering onto my feet were even thicker.

That’s awful! Glad you tried them, and I honestly thought they would be great, but everyone is different. My hope is you will be able to find a solution soon!

Apologies about the knitting - I furor what you write earlier. That said I got curious about what different types of socks exist and found a website with patterns some of which don’t look (at least to me) to have a constricting cuff of any at all. If any of those look like they would work you might be able to find the style on etsy.com. Interesting choices, sins of which I’ve never seen before.

Thanks, @wadawabbit .

This came up in my Facebook feed is your would like to check it out:

@theNoz - No, I hadn’t even heard of Raynaud’s Phenomenon until now. My feet don’t turn blue. I just get red itchy marks on my calves and ankles from the elastic in socks. I think I may be allergic to the elastic, though that has never been confirmed.

Pam K

@pamcklein , I don’t think I’m allergic to elastic, yet I identify more than you know - especially right now! Mostly I can tolerate bandaids of all sorts just fine, but there are a few parts of my body, including my 3rd finger of my left hand which sorely needs a bandaid right at the moment, that don’t tolerate them at all. They’ll be right next to parts that tolerate them fine (2nd and 4th fingers), but put a bandaid on the sensitive parts and it’s maddening with irritation - until an hour or 2 after removing the bandaid, then it’s fine. Repeat: put another bandaid on, crazy-making, bandaid off, it’s fine again. I see no signs of inflammation, it just wants to be shed of that bandaid really desperately.

I’ve twice had to have spots removed and biopsied that were so generally irritating, they itched all day long, even without bandaids. The lab results? “Anomalous skin.” Oh, terrific!

So I understand about the irritation you might get from something. There was a while, during menopause when I was allergic to soap (even some hypoallergenic ones) and some other things, when my skin was even irritated by any polyester or nylon. I totally believe you if you think you’re allergic to elastic.

Hi @theNoz . I was doing some online shopping, was checking out winter wear, and your post about socks crossed my mind. Were you ever able to find any that worked for you?
I hope you enjoyed Thanksgiving and send you warmest wishes for whatever holiday/s you celebrate. Take care!

Hey, @wadawabbit Dorie, and Happy Thanksgiving to you also.

Yeah, I keep thinking, I should post an update, but I’m never quite done searching…

To answer you, I found the nearly perfect pair of socks - in my sock drawer. I hadn’t worn them in years because they are so itchy, but the fit is devine and they are very warm. Wigwam Husky Heavyweight Crew. I found something very like them on them on the Wigwam site still (mine must be many years old), but out of stock and looking discontinued, especially judging by how every bloody pair of in-stock socks has the bleeping cuff at the top. What IS it with sock makers???

With any luck, wool really does last forever and I can wear these half the winter on the coldest days, between washings.

I just finally put on a pair of Sockwell’s “Relaxed Fit Women’s Big Easy Ultra Light Cushion”. I had been avoiding them, because while they were still in the package I could fit my hand up into one and boy is there elastic. However, they’re pretty dang thin, and did stretch enough that so far they aren’t bothering me too much. Yet. I only finally tried them on because you wrote! LOL. There was only one color left in stock, one I don’t like, so maybe next spring I’ll see if there are more. Or after X-mas.

There’s a sheep on the immense amount of boxing around the Sockwells, but I can’t find what it’s actually made of beyond “Happy Sheep Merino wool from American Grown free-grazing sheep”. Sure didn’t feel like all-wool, but maybe because they are SO thin and elastic-y.

Sockwells are made in the USA, BTW, so I do plan to keep my eye on them.

I finally found a company actually named “Extra Wide Socks”. I haven’t received the pair of Loose Fit Stays Up Marled Merino Wool Socks that I ordered, but when I first found a distributor of Extra Wides, they only had 91% cotton socks that I would classify as 3 seasons, Spring-Summer-Fall. Ordered some before I could lose track of the site, of course.

The ones I got first don’t fit loosely, but the package says Comfort Fit, which I think is a level of Extra Wide’s compression gradations. I’m not a ton overweight, mind you, 5’7" and 167, and when I’m not taking blood pressure meds and it’s not too humid, my ankles are toothpicks. It’s just that I have to do everything to keep blood flow unconstricted because of the Raynauds. Anyway, these Comfort Fit Extra Wides feel a little tighter than the Sockwells, but they cover my full calf and so are not really a problem. They’ll be good to have in warmer weather. Honestly, they are slightly constricting overall but are a lot more comfortable than the compression socks I used to wear on planes.

Maybe now that I’ve mentioned the Merino Wool Relaxed Fit, they’ll get delivered today. Toes crossed.

There were also some 35% wool socks from Etsy that came labeled “Fashion Boutique” that looked on the page like they might be all right, no cuff, but they weren’t as big as they looked in the picture. Natch. No particular cuff, always a good thing, but WOW were they tight! Within minutes all extra fluids in my legs and feet from the top of the sock down had fled the scene. They were the first socks I got, and so I gave them a longer try than I should have. When I took them off less than an hour later, my feet looked utterly unnatural. And yet… their texture feels so lovely, to me. If only they fit my feet, I would be recommending these topmost.

And I finally caved and bought more of LL Bean’s ragg wool. They don’t let you choose colors any more, and Bean has made so many choices in the last 5 years that tick me off (especially as an ex-employee, albeit briefly) that I was avoiding giving them any more money. I do have to go out of my way to stretch the ragg wool socks before putting them on (I could buy a size up, but then the heel is up behind my ankle), but they mostly fill the bill. And they’re warm enough. Mostly.

Anyway. Give Extra Wide Socks a peruse. They certainly offer choices, and they have lots of options for searching, but it’s hard to find socks with the set of options I wanted (relaxed fit, women’s, extra wool, I think that was it). But I can wear men’s socks anyway, because the front of my foot is so wide, so, whatev.

OH - but make sure you’re reading the Extra Wides sizing chart when you order. These Comfort Fits are Small, “fits up to 6E width”, but they will fit women’s 6.5 to 9.5. I have a hard time picturing a woman with size 6.5 feet not flopping around in them.

Anyway. Toes and fingers crossed on those Extra Wide merino socks yet to come.

Er, P.S. Extra Wides has their own website, I only ordered the cotton ones from the other site because I hadn’t found Extra Wide Socks Co (https://extrawidesockco.com/) yet.

OH and I forgot the best of all! Goosefeet down socks. I love them. I bought 2 pairs at 75% extra stuffing and no elastic at the top, and to be honest I wear wool-socked feet inside the two pairs one inside the other around the house, unless it’s over 60 outside. They only have one problem, that I have with all socks anyway: If my feet are already chilly when I’m putting the socks on, they will not get any warmer while wearing even the warmest footwear unless it’s electric. However. These Goosefeet babies are my favorite gift to myself ever. Period, exclamation point, happy dance.

Oh to see video of your happy dance, but that may be too much to ask. I wonder if a couple of minutes in the dryer would help - without burning of course. I’m glad things are looking up for you! They not be perfect but you’ve found some!