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The sweat-wicking, stink-fighting, foot-saving toe socks you didn't know you needed.
^Also shoutout to the Rumpl blanket (which I also just reviewed) under my feet in a ton of these pics!
I was wearing bulkier boots at the time and the thin sock really helped me achieve a better fit, not to mention keep my feet pain-free enough to keep going on the trail for a few more days. If you have boots that are a little snug, but you're not willing or able to part with them yet, I highly recommend using these liners as your main sock!
The liners can also be used to prevent blisters on the heel when worn with another pair of socks. I *did* find this useful, but ultimately just liked the toe socks alone!
LMAO they definitely weren't clean, but like...nothing is clean at the end of a backpacking trip. A little crustiness was a win in my book.
The liners also come in a nonwool version that I haven't tried, but I love the NuWool — which are made with merino wool — for the natural anti-stink factor that brings *so* many hikers to buy wool socks time and time again.
I used to think that hiking socks needed to be puffy and enormous, but after a lot of review reading and, most importantly, trial and error, I've found midweight socks like this to be *way* more suitable for hiking and backpacking than the veritable foot towels I was wearing before.
I know that 12 miles is nothing compared to what a lot of backpackers can do in a day, but hey, it's not nothing! And 12 miles *and* no blisters, especially for my wildly blister-able feet is 100% something to write home about!
And I could write a whole other tome about Altras, but the short version: They're the greatest hiking shoes ever. Check out the Lone Peak 5s from Amazon for $126+ in "women's" sizes 5.5–12 and $103+ in "men's" sizes 7–16. They're also available in "men's" and "women's" sizes from REI.
I've done enough yoga in my day to really value toe strength! Strong toes really do = better balance.
My socks and shoes also unexpectedly match. :') I truly don't care what I look like when I'm hiking, but I'll happily take this win.
I usually bring just the oldest, cheapest, lightest pair of flip-flops I own as my camp shoes, but I think I'm gonna bring my trusty Tevas^ on my next trip! These are the Olowahu flip-flops ($21.21+ on Amazon, available in sizes 5–12), which are sturdy yet light, and I wear them pretty much every day.
"These socks have saved my feet! I always got blisters on my heels and between my toes before these socks, even when I changed my shoes. Since getting these, zero blisters (even on 20-mile days). I can’t recommend these enough!!! They dried within a few hours in the sun on backpacking trips. They also didn’t get super stinky when I wore them for several days without washing, so that’s a plus." —Katie D
"So you gotta get used to these but once you can get past the different feel they're really a great liner sock. I wear these under my Smartwool expedition socks and my feet are really happy. Was worried they'd be too hot but they do a great job of keeping the sweat off and my feet have never been more comfy. Will definitely be buying more — I'm a convert!" —utfisher
"Injinji socks are perfect for my feet with bunion issues. NuWool is great for the Pacific Northwest weather!!" —GGinPDX
The reviews in this post have been edited for length and clarity.