It’s time to embrace eco-friendly socks that not only keep your feet cozy and comfortable, but also contribute to a healthier planet. In this article, we’ll explore the best sustainable socks of 2023, discuss the materials and manufacturing processes that make them eco-friendly, and share our top picks for sustainable socks brands. Keep reading to discover how to make a positive impact with every step!

Short Summary

  • Be excited to show your commitment to a greener future with eco-friendly sustainable socks!
  • Discover the perfect mix of performance and sustainability with our top picks for 2023.
  • Make an informed decision by focusing on materials, ethical practices, and giving back initiatives.

Understanding Sustainable Socks

A mix of organic cotton socks

Sustainable socks are more than just a trendy fashion statement. They’re a symbol of our commitment to a greener future, made from eco-friendly materials and ethical manufacturing processes that help make a positive impact on the environment and society. When you slip on a pair of sustainable socks, you’re not only enjoying the comfort and durability they provide, but you’re also supporting the brands that prioritize our planet and its inhabitants.

But what exactly makes a sock sustainable? It’s all about the materials, manufacturing processes, and ethical practices behind each pair. Let’s explore these essential aspects of sustainability in more detail.


collage of eco-friendly materials such as organic cotton and bamboo.

Sustainable socks, also known as eco friendly socks, are crafted from materials that are kind to the environment, like organic cotton, bamboo, hemp, and ethically sourced or recycled wool. These eco-friendly fabrics not only minimize the negative impact on the planet, but also provide unparalleled comfort and durability for your feet, making organic sustainable socks, sustainable bamboo socks, and sustainable ankle socks the best eco friendly socks available.

When it comes to sustainable socks, it’s important to look for certifications that guarantee their eco-friendliness. For instance, GOTS-certified organic cotton ensures that harmful chemicals and pesticides are not used in its cultivation, while FSC-certified bamboo guarantees responsible and sustainable forest management.

Manufacturing Processes

In addition to using eco-friendly materials, sustainable socks brands prioritize manufacturing processes that reduce energy consumption, waste, and pollution. For example, Outerknown’s dyeing process uses 98% less water and significantly less energy than conventional methods, saving an impressive 50 gallons of water per pair of socks!

By embracing energy-efficient production methods and waste-reducing technologies, sustainable socks brands demonstrate their commitment to minimizing their environmental impact. So when you choose sustainable socks, you’re not only supporting brands that prioritize the planet, but also contributing to a cleaner, greener future.

Ethical Practices

Sustainable sock production goes beyond eco-friendly materials and manufacturing processes. Ethical practices play a crucial role in making sure that the people involved in the supply chain are treated fairly and with respect. Sustainable socks brands prioritize fair wages, safe working conditions, and certifications like Fair Trade and B Corp to guarantee that their operations have a positive impact on both the environment and society.

By supporting sustainable socks brands that follow ethical practices, you’re not only making a difference in the lives of the people who produce your socks, but you’re also promoting a more equitable and just world for everyone.

Our Top Picks for Sustainable Sock Brands

A pair of eco friendly socks with recycled materials symbols all over hanging on a clothsline

Now that we’ve explored the essentials of sustainable socks, it’s time to introduce our top picks for the best sustainable socks brands of 2023. These brands not only use eco-friendly materials and prioritize ethical practices, but they also offer a wide range of styles and designs to suit every taste and preference. So whether you’re looking for athletic socks, everyday options, or something in between, these brands have got you covered.

From Conscious Step’s organic cotton socks with a buy-one-give-one donation model, to Boody’s bamboo viscose socks that prioritize comfort and breathability, our top picks showcase the diverse options available in the world of sustainable socks. Let’s take a closer look at each brand and what makes them stand out.

Conscious Step

link to

Conscious Step offers a unique blend of sustainability and social responsibility with their organic cotton socks. They're vegan certified, OEKO-TEX certified,  GOTS certified, and Fairtrade International certified as well. For each pair sold, the brand donates $1 to a variety of inspiring non-profit causes, making your sock choice more than just a fashion statement.

Consciousness Step also offers a subscription option that delivers a new pair of sustainable socks to your doorstep each month at a reduced price. With fun patterns and comfortable designs, Conscious Step makes it easy to support both the planet and the community. Make sure to join their free rewards program to get even more for your purchases!


link to

Boody is all about comfort and sustainability. Their socks are made from FSC-certified organic bamboo lyocell viscose, which is not only soft and comfortable, but also eco-friendly and ethically produced. Did you know that bamboo lycocell uses less than half the water it takes to make similar cotton socks!?!

Boody’s bamboo viscose material holds certifications from Ecocert, OEKO-TEX, FSC (Fashion Forever Green Pact), and PETA-Approved certified ensuring that you can trust their commitment to sustainability and ethical practices.

So, if you’re looking for sustainable socks that prioritize both comfort and the environment, Boody is an excellent choice.

link to Boody best-selling basics


link to allbirds website homepage

Allbirds is a sustainable brand that combines style and eco-friendliness, using renewable materials like TENCEL lyocell (tree fiber) in their sock production. TENCEL lyocell uses a whopping 95% less water than conventional cotton! Their impressive commitment to carbon neutrality makes sure that all of their products, including their socks, have a minimal environmental impact.

They're a certified B Corporation, FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified,

Their variety of styles, including no-show socks, ankle socks, and crew socks with extra cushioning and reinforced wear points guarantees that you’ll find the perfect pair for any occasion.


+MD is a company that primarily uses bamboo materials to create comfortable and durable socks, diabetic socks, compression wear, shapewear, athletic wear and more. Their products are designed to provide maximum comfort, featuring moisture-wicking and odor-resistant properties.

While +MD doesn't have the same certifications as the companies we discussed above, they're available on Amazon and significantly cheaper than many of the other options. This makes them attainable for some people that would like to try bamboo socks but can't afford to spend $15+/pair.

+MD Bamboo Diabetic & Circulator Socks Men Women-6 Pairs

Sustainable Athletic Socks: Performance Meets Eco-Friendliness

A pair of sustainable athletic socks with recycled wool and hiking boots

For those with an active lifestyle, finding sustainable athletic socks that combine performance with eco-friendly materials and ethical practices is essential. Fortunately, brands like Smartwool and Patagonia have risen to the challenge, offering a range of sustainable socks that don’t compromise on performance or environmental responsibility.

Whether you’re hitting the trails or sweating it out in the gym, these sustainable socks brands will keep your feet comfortable and dry, while also supporting eco-friendly practices and materials. Let’s explore these brands further and discover how they’re changing the game.


link to Smartwool homepage

Smartwool is a ZQ-certified sustainable clothing brand that specializes in high-quality, sustainable merino wool socks (and all other types of clothing) designed for outdoor activities. Made from responsibly sourced merino wool, Smartwool’s socks provide breathability, moisture-wicking properties, and temperature regulation, ensuring maximum comfort during your outdoor pursuits.

By choosing Smartwool, you’re not only getting a pair of high-performance athletic socks, but you’re also supporting a brand that values sustainability and ethical practices, including their ethical winter socks.

They have an impressive two-year satisfaction guarantee where they'll refund any Smartwool products you're unhappy with after you fill out a short claim form.


link to Patagonia website homepage

Patagonia is a 50 year old, well-known, sustainable brand that focuses on producing high-quality eco-friendly clothing and athletic gear, including socks made from renewable and recycled materials, such as recycled polyester, cotton, and wool. They use materials like wool that meets the Responsible Wool Standard, organic cotton, down certified to the Responsible Down Standard, and more. Their commitment to sustainability extends beyond materials though, as they also prioritize ethical manufacturing processes and giving back to communities to protect the planet.

For example: last part of Patagonia’s mission statement is “…use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.”

Patagonia’s athletic socks are perfect for a range of outdoor and indoor activities, from hiking to yoga, to running, ensuring that your feet stay comfortable and dry while also supporting a brand that shares your commitment to the environment.

They're a are registered B Corp, Regenerative Organic Certified and Fair Trade certified. They're part of the bluesign system network, they use as many FSC-certified raw materials as possible, and use R.D.S. certified down.

They have a repair, replace, or refund guarantee that makes sure customers are satisfied for life.

Their trade-in program, Worn Wear, repairs and resells used Patagonia gear as one more facet to their environmentally friendly business practices. They state that reusing clothing instead of purchasing new actually cuts down the carbon emissions by a whopping 51%.

link to Worn Wear

They created Patagonia Works to connect individuals and businesses working on environmental issues in their communities. Here's a short 2 minute video explaining Patagonia Action Works:

It's probably pretty obvious by now, but the more we looked into Patagonia's environmental and sustainable business practices, the more impressed we became. We're not really a "luxury" brand family, but this is definitely a company we'll be keeping an eye on.

Comfy Socks for Everyday Wear

A pair of comfy socks for everyday wear with natural materials in many colors

For those seeking comfortable, everyday sustainable socks, look no further than Thought and Kotn. These brands offer a variety of eco-friendly materials and ethical manufacturing processes, ensuring that your feet stay comfy and cozy throughout the day. With fun patterns, classic designs, and a commitment to sustainability, Thought and Kotn are the perfect additions to your sustainable wardrobe.

Thought’s diverse range of sustainable socks made from organic cotton, bamboo, and hemp, to Kotn’s “farm-to-table” system with Egyptian cotton, these brands provide quality, comfort, and style for your everyday wear.

Let’s take a closer look at what makes these brands stand out.


Thought offers a wide range of sustainable socks made from materials like organic cotton, bamboo, recycled nylon and hemp, providing comfort and durability for your everyday wear. Their fun patterns and designs make them a stylish addition to your wardrobe.

Their commitment to eco-friendly materials and ethical manufacturing processes ensure that you’re making a positive impact on the environment and society. Thought’s socks are the perfect choice for those seeking comfortable, sustainable options for everyday wear.

They're vegan friendly, use recycled materials, and many of their products are GOTS and Fairtrade Certified.

link to Thought sustainable clothing website


Kotn takes a unique approach to sustainable sock production with their “farm-to-table” system, using Egyptian cotton to produce long-lasting, basic sustainable socks in various styles. By working closely with farmers and ensuring ethical practices throughout the supply chain, Kotn offers comfortable socks and clothes that are both eco-friendly and socially responsible.

With a focus on quality and sustainability, Kotn’s socks are an excellent choice for those seeking everyday comfort without compromising on their commitment to the environment.

Kotn is a certified B Corp and their materials are sourced from organizations like The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), OEKO-TEX® non-toxic certified dyes, Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), Global Recycle Standard (GRS) and the Responsible Wool Standard (RWS).

Kotn | Sustainable Clothing & Home Decor. Quality, Comfort, Ethics.
Designed in Canada, ethically and sustainably made in the Nile Delta. Shop quality basics from 100% Egyptian cotton. Every purchase funds new schools.

How to Choose the Right Sustainable Socks

A pile of warm white and grey socks

Choosing the right sustainable socks might seem overwhelming with so many options available, but it doesn’t have to be. By focusing on a few key aspects, you can easily find the perfect pair that aligns with your values and meets your needs.

Let’s explore some tips to help you make the best choice when it comes to sustainable socks. First, it’s essential to check the fabric and ensure that it’s made from eco-friendly materials. Next, research the brand’s mission and initiatives to confirm that they prioritize sustainability, ethical practices, and giving back to communities.

By considering these factors, you can confidently choose the right sustainable socks for you.

Check the Fabric

When selecting sustainable socks, it’s crucial to look for responsibly sourced fabrics and opt for natural or organic materials to reduce waste and environmental impact. Sustainable materials such as bamboo, hemp, organic cotton, and ethically sourced or recycled wool are all excellent choices that offer comfort and durability while minimizing harm to the planet.

These materials, often natural materials, are more expensive than conventional fabrics, but the long-term benefits to the environment and your wallet make them a worthwhile investment. Additionally, look for socks that are made with low-impact dyes and free of toxic chemicals.

Investigate the Brand's Mission and Initiatives

Before purchasing sustainable socks, take the time to research the brand’s mission and initiatives to ensure they prioritize sustainability, ethical practices, and giving back to communities. Look for brands that support fair trade, use environmentally friendly manufacturing processes, and engage in charitable giving or other initiatives that align with your values.

By investigating the brand’s mission and initiatives, you can feel confident that your purchase supports a company that shares your commitment to a greener, more equitable future.

In Conclusion

To sum it up, sustainable socks are an essential addition to any eco-friendly wardrobe. With options like Conscious Step, Boody, Allbirds, +MD, Smartwool, Patagonia, Thought, and Kotn, and more there’s a sustainable sock brand for every style and preference. By choosing socks made from eco-friendly materials and produced using ethical practices, you’re not only investing in comfort and durability, but also supporting a greener, more equitable future. So go ahead, step into a world of sustainability, and make your socks drawer a force for good.

So whether you’re looking for athletic socks, everyday wear, or something in between, hopefully our top picks for the best sustainable socks of 2023 have got you covered!

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What is the most sustainable material for socks?

The most sustainable materials for socks include bamboo, hemp, organic cotton, and ethically sourced or recycled wool. These eco-friendly materials not only minimize the environmental impact of sock production, but also provide comfort and durability for your feet.

When choosing sustainable socks, look for certifications such as GOTS for organic cotton or FSC for bamboo to ensure that the materials are responsibly sourced and produced.

What is an alternative to bamboo socks?

An alternative to bamboo socks could be socks made from organic cotton, hemp, or Tencel. These materials are also eco-friendly and sustainable, offering a variety of benefits such as breathability, moisture-wicking properties, and durability.

When looking for alternatives to bamboo socks, consider the environmental impact of the material as well as its comfort and performance.

Are merino wool socks eco-friendly?

Merino wool socks can be eco-friendly if sourced ethically and produced using sustainable practices. Look for certifications such as the Responsible Wool Standard (RWS) to ensure that the wool is ethically sourced and that the production process has minimal environmental impact.

Merino wool and recycled cotton are both renewable resources and biodegradable, making them sustainable choices for sock materials

Do vegans wear merino?

Vegans may choose not to wear merino wool due to animal welfare concerns and opt for plant-based or synthetic alternatives instead. However, it’s essential to note that there are ethically sourced and sustainable options for merino wool, such as ZQ Merino, which ensures high standards of animal welfare and environmental stewardship.

As a vegan, you’ll need to weigh the ethical considerations and decide whether merino wool aligns with your values.

Are wool socks compostable?

Are wool socks compostable? Here’s the good news for those of us who love comfy, cozy wool socks: YES, wool socks are absolutely compostable! As long as they’re 100% natural materials, you can turn them into something else — turning your old socks into soil and helping the planet in the process.

How wonderful!

Do bamboo socks biodegrade?

Amazingly, bamboo socks are much more eco-friendly than their synthetic counterparts - biodegrading in a matter of years rather than decades. So yes, bamboo socks do biodegrade!

Are bamboo socks better for the environment?

Yes, bamboo socks are better for the environment than many traditional materials! Bamboo is a soft and sustainable fabric that produces significantly fewer pollutants than other materials. Not only does it feel great on your skin, but bamboo also provides a more eco-friendly option for all your socks needs.

Plus, it’s naturally odor-resistant and antibacterial! So why wait? Get yourself some bamboo socks today and take a step towards sustainability.