GearWeAre’s reviews try to cut through the technical jargon which comes along with many outdoor products these days, and tell you in layman’s terms what things do. So, in layman’s terms, these socks make your feet hot.
In fact, I’ve been wearing them all day today, and to paraphrase the Kings of Leon, these socks are on fire. My feet feel like they’re hot and sweaty, but the weird thing is that when I whip the socks off they’re not hot or sweaty, at all. It’s voodoo, I tell you.
You’ll have to excuse me for a little bit of marketing/science from the socks’ packaging now:
These socks have infra-red emitting Nexus fibres, which improve the microcirculation, oxygenation, and thermo-regulation, prevent micro-traumas and increase efficiency and muscular resistance.
A bit of further reading on the Accapi website reveals that Nexus material is a fabric woven with Titanium, Platinum and Aluminium which which acts like a sort of energy cage around your body, reflecting back some of the infra-red energy (heat) that you give off, as well as giving off a little of its own energy. They say that the benefit of this bouncing-back of energy is to make your blood flow more easily into the capilaries of your feet and carry more oxygen, which your muscles need in order to work (and recover).
Accapi have an impressive line-up of professional athletes who recommend/endorse their products and the virtues of Nexus fabric. They say that it greatly improves recovery times and thus allows an increase in performance. I don’t have any reason to doubt these claims but I can’t vouch for any personal increase in performance when trekking, or better recovery from various minor foot injuries I’ve had. In truth, I’m not sure how I’d measure that.
So, let’s put aside the fact that my tootsies are toasty and look at how the socks are made…
They’re nicely comfortable and feature a contoured design (specific left and right feet). They have good quality stitching and flat seams, nice areas of protection around the heel and achilles, and something called ‘No Brush’ technology on the above-ankles areas, which is a very smooth weave that doesn’t catch on trousers. There isn’t much in the way of padding at the heel or ball though.
In combination with the Nexus metallic fibres, the socks are made from a combination of Merino Wool, Nylon and Acrylic. That tells me that if they get wet, they should keep you warm still, and that they’ll be able to wick any sweat away from your feet quite well. I’m imagining that, in order to combine the wool and the metals, someone, somewhere is breeding Terminator Sheep.
So, on to the price. And at this point you’ll remember that I mentioned these socks had some exotic metals in them and that’s perhaps why they’re £25. Per pair. Ouch. That’s double the price of something like a Smartwool trekking sock.
SUMMARY: I’d love to be cynical and call bovine-droppings on Accapi’s ‘magic ingredient’ claims, but the fact is that after wearing these socks all day, including on a couple of short hikes (one in boots, one in shoes) my feet feel really hot but at no point uncomfortably hot. They’re comfortable and well made, but not the most padded trekking socks. At £25, they’re very expensive indeed and that has to affect the rating. Whether or not you can justify the cost with the belief that they’ll aid your recovery and performance, and help cure minor injuries is up to you. I’ll going to rate them at 3-Hammers, and I’ll come back to this review if and when I feel some long-term benefit.
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