Compression socks are manufactured from a wide variety of different fabrics, which in conjunction with manufacturing quality is where the differences in price come in. Fibers are chosen by manufacturers in accordance with the necessary thickness, softness, elasticity, durability and of course, the overall comfort of the final product. In many instances however, material choice comes down to personal preference of the buyer.
For example, certain recovery socks may be manufactured using a combination of spandex and nylon, while travel socks generally comprise nylon, spandex and cotton. There are even other garments that may have threads of silver woven into them, which is renowned for its anti-microbial properties.
When microfiber materials are used, this makes it possible for the skin beneath to ‰Û÷breathe‰Ûª and can therefore deliver a higher level of comfort. In addition, microfiber fabrics are the thinnest fabrics produced these days and can be a full 50% finer than silk. Because of this, compression garments made using microfiber fabric can be incredibly lightweight and comfortable to wear.
Elastane often finds its way into the manufacture of compression garments, which is most commonly referred to as Lycra. It is particularly suitable to these types of garments, due to its ability to stretch to up to seven times its own length, depending on which other materials it is combined with.
Nylon is renowned for its incredibly durable and elastic properties, which combine with both softness and comparative affordability. Nylon represents a key material used in the manufacture of the vast majority of lower priced compression socks.
Right at the opposite end of the scale, compression socks and garments in general that are created using any amount of silk tend to be considerably more expensive. A uniquely glossy, soft, light, comfortable and somewhat exclusive material, silk garments remain cool throughout the summer and warm in the winter.
It is also highly probable that spandex will be used in the manufacture of many of the compression garments you come across. Spandex is a light, firm and highly robust synthetic fiber that is extremely stretchy. It allows for maximum freedom of movement, is comprehensively comfortable to wear and is generally very easy to care for.
Something else to take into account when it comes to materials and overall comfort is whether you may have any existing allergies to any of the fabrics used.
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