Do you think all compression socks are the same? You may believe there's no difference between one type or the other, or one brand and another—as they all claim to do the same thing: gently compress legs and feet to increase blood flow and promote healthier and happier feet and legs.
While it is true that all compression socks
should deliver a gentle squeeze, not every sock has been created equally. There are a lot of factors that go into creating an excellent compression sock that provides the benefits it promises. Today, we'll look at what makes a compression sock less-than-stellar and compare it to what makes it great.
The Not-So-Great Compression Sock
You're purchasing compression socks for health and comfort reasons. Whether it's spider veins, long, arduous hours on your feet, or constant travel— you no doubt use compression to support and protect your legs and feet. So a manufacturer should guarantee the quality of their compression socks as these garments impact not just your leg and feet but your overall health
—so choosing the least expensive pair is probably not the best choice.
What are the signs of not-so-great compression socks?
1. Price too good to be true.
Low prices come at a cost we often do not see. If the price is too good to be true, take a moment and wonder why that is. What is the manufacturer doing to be able to afford production, quality assurance, and quality materials while offering a pair of compression socks at a price so low?
Unfortunately, there are many hidden and not-so-hidden reasons in cases like this. They could be outsourcing their production and labor to developing countries, which saves them money but comes at a high economic and environmental cost. Outsourcing work and production comes with many disadvantages as well.
- Thousands of overseas workers are paying the price for lower-cost goods as global competition drives down workers' salaries—in some cases, just pennies an hour already.
- Many workers still face underpayment, abuse, harassment, and the worst-case scenario: risking their lives in unsafe buildings, factories, and working conditions.
- Lack of quality control is prevalent. When one company outsources to another company in another country, they lose complete control over labor and manufacturing. Many do not directly interact with the people making their products.
- Poorly made. One of the many reasons outsourced products are so affordable is that overseas factories rely on quantity over quality. Workers have to produce a shocking number of products as fast as possible in an hour or a day. Quality suffers immensely, with loose material, uneven stitching, and socks worn out within weeks.
Perhaps you've enjoyed a week or two of comfortable compression sock wear. But within that week or two, you begin noticing an uncomfortable problem. Your compression socks no longer sit below the knee but are beginning to slide down. Chances are the manufacturer or company did not use heavy-duty, quality elastics and had poor quality control during making the cuff (the part of the top of the sock that fits securely around the top of your leg.)
3. Unraveling or holes in less than 30 days or wear.
With proper care and maintenance, your compression socks should not show wear, tear, or loose compression for at least six months. Suppose you purchased a pair a month ago and are already losing elasticity, and compression, have strings unraveling, or a toe poking through a hole. In that case, unfortunately, you have a poor pair of compression socks.
What Makes a Great Compression Sock
Now that you know and are aware of the signs and issues that come with a pair of not-so-great socks, it's time to find out what makes a pair great!
1. Good Compression socks aren't cheap.
Unless there is an ongoing sale, a great pair of compression socks can cost anywhere from $40 to $70 and higher for prescription compression socks. But why are great socks so much more expensive?
- A company that cares deeply about what they do and its product often uses state-of-the-art knitting machines with yarn control devices. These machines are designed to regulate stitch length and tension for precise, true graduated compression.
- The machines and factories are within the country of the company's origin. For instance, American compression socks are made in a facility within America and created by American workers. The FLSA (The Fair Labor Standards Act) establishes minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping, and youth employment standards to ensure employee health and safety.
- Since they are made within the company's country, the company can handle quality assurance hands-on. Additionally, the company can monitor and ensure every aspect of their socks are high quality, from fabrics used, elastics, fit, compression, consistent color, and design.
- A reputable company understands the importance of stringent testing and meeting strict standards, as they know that compression socks are a medical device and can affect their customer's overall health.
2. Long-lasting and Durable.
Great compression socks use exceptional fibers to ensure the compression remains, is rugged enough to be worn daily with particular attention to comfort, and should last up to or longer than half a year. Proper care of compression socks can also ensure they last a long time, such as hand washing in cold water and a very mild detergent, no fabric softeners, and no bleach to avoid weakening the premium fabric and weakening any elasticity (as washer machines notoriously bad for garments with elasticity.)
So what makes a great compression sock? A company that cares deeply about what they do and how they do it understands the vital necessity of stringent quality control. It knows they are creating a medical device that benefits all areas of our lives
Regarding compression socks and your health, 'you get what you pay for' is accurate. Customers should cautiously view big-name shops selling several pairs for unbelievable prices. This is your legs, feet, and health; you deserve the best and the greatest compression socks!
Are you ready for a pair of compression socks that are fantastic? Crazy Compression is prepared to help!