Smartwool Hiking Socks Review 

If you have ever found yourself adopting the mentality that your feet are tough so they’ll endure working or hiking all day in a pair of standard socks, we invite you to try a pair of high-quality socks. We imagine your mindset may shift entirely. You may even realize that your feet can feel good after a long hard day if you try Smartwool Light Crew Hiking Socks. 

These socks are made up of a special blend of merino wool, nylon, and elastane designed specifically to be incredibly comfortable, well-fitting, thermoregulating, breathable, and durable. They are thick, yet surprisingly lightweight such that you will never feel bogged down as you walk.

They also hit right at the mid to upper calf, like regular crew socks which makes them ideal for shoes or boots alike. They are engineered for hiking, which is clear from their exceptional performance, but they would be perfect for ordinary or everyday wear as well.

We are certain most people will benefit from wearing these socks, but let’s take a look at all the specs and features to determine if they are worth your purchase.

Smartwool Hiking Socks Review

smartwool socks photo


  • Brand: Smartwool
  • Sizes: S-XL
  • Fit: Size Up
  • Colors: Alpine Blue, Demin, Gray, Loden, Taupe
  • Materials: Merino Wool, Nylon, and Elastane
  • Price: $15.00-$25.00. (Check price on Amazon)


smartwool inside sock photo

Smartwool Light Crew Hiking Socks are as comfortable as they come, thanks to the high-quality merino wool. Merino wool is well-known for possessing ultra-thin and soft fibers. In this way, they bend whenever they come in contact with the skin which means they will never scratch or itch your skin.

As wool is usually associated with being itchy, it is a pleasant surprise to learn these merino wool socks will never create that effect. 

Further, Smartwool gave these socks a light cushioning all along the sides and undersides of your feet; this provides all the comfort you need as you walk, without an excess of cushion causing your feet to slip and slide within your shoe.

Likewise, the nylon and elastane allow your foot to have a secure, but not overly tight fit. Smartwool added extra comfort by creating a flat knit toe seam, which means there isn’t a seam bump where the edges meet; this construction avoids snagging toenails when putting on the socks and uncomfortable rubbing against a seam while walking. 


The superior design of these socks, with strategically placed mesh ventilation zones, allow for breathability from common places on your foot that overheat and sweat (such as your heel).

As mentioned before, although these socks are quite thick, they are lightweight which means the air can pass through them easily. However, it is truly their premium materials that bring out exceptional airflow as well as moisture-wicking and odor-reducing qualities.

Merino wool does not restrict sweating, rather the fibers absorb the moisture directly and quickly. They will only release that moisture when in a drier environment; for instance, precisely when your body needs moist heat or when you are washing and drying them.

In the same fashion, merino wool soaks up the odor molecules that come along with sweat which minimizes stinky feet. 


Since merino wool is excellent at absorbing moisture and drying quickly, they are cool and dry in the summer. Additionally, merino wool fibers have a rippled texture to them which creates air pockets. These air pockets provide layers of insulation, retaining heat in the winter and keeping you cool in the summer. 


These socks are made up of 69% merino wool, 30% nylon, and 1% elastane. Even on their own, these materials are strong and long-lasting. These socks will last you a few hiking seasons, or longer if you are using them for everyday, ordinary wear instead.

However, if you are really putting them to heavy use, you may see areas that receive a large amount of friction wear away quickly; for instance, if your sock is sliding in your hiking boots, you may have the heel and the toe wear out quickly. 


Although Smartwool socks are quite expensive, averaging between 15$ and 25$ a pair, the value you receive for these socks is incredible. If you are used to wearing thin or average socks, you will certainly see a big difference in how your feet feel after wearing them all day. 

Are Smartwool Hiking Socks worth buying? 

Overall, the Smartwool Light Crew Hiking Socks are worth the purchase. Their materials and design provide a comfortable sock for hiking and everyday wear.

They are lightweight, breathable, thermo-regulating, moisture-absorbing, and odor-reducing. Although they could be more durable for heavy-duty use, we believe that they would be thicker or less breathable if they were constructed to be more durable; thus, the durability would take away from their incredible benefits. 

Common Questions 

Is Smartwool a good brand?

Smartwool is a premium merino wool clothing brand. They produce exceptional clothing, known for their high-quality material and the subsequent benefits; namely, comfort, thermoregulation, and breathability. 

Are Smartwool socks good for hiking?

Smartwool socks are excellent for hiking, whether you are enduring long thru-hikes or short, light hiking days. Your feet will stay warm or cool depending on the season, dry, as well as sweat and odor proof. 

How many days can you wear Smartwool socks?

With proper care and regular use, the Smartwool socks can be worn for up to 2 years. If you plan on heavier use, Smartwool socks may wear out quickly, especially around the toe and heel. 

Are Smartwool socks 100% wool?

Although Smartwool makes a wide array of socks with different compositions and constructions, the Smartwool Light Crew Hiking Socks are made out of 69% merino wool, 30% nylon, and 1% elastane. The nylon and elastane allow for the sock to maintain its shape and an excellent fit. 

How should Smartwool socks be washed?

Smartwool socks can be machine washed in warm or cool water and tumble dried on low. You should avoid excessively hot temperatures when both washing and drying as it can cause the Smartwool socks to shrink.

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