With 26 bones and many joints, muscles, tendons and ligaments, the human foot is very complex. In a lifetime, each person logs an average 70,000 miles on their feet. With all that use on such a small percentage of our body it’s a wonder we get around at all! Kind of gives you a new respect for your feet, doesn’t it? That’s why proper foot care, and wearing the right socks and shoes is essential. If you treat your feet right, they will treat you in kind!
Feet perspire about 20-30 gallons in total, per year, even per foot that’s a lot of sweat! Where does it go? Well 5-8 gallons of that perspiration gets absorbed by each sock, and shoes get their fare share as well. Fiber content does make a difference in your socks! Avoid 100% cotton socks. Cotton is a great absorbing material, but then where does the moisture go? Nowhere! It stays right there against the foot. This moisture softens the skin, increases friction and, in turn, causes blisters. Avoid Wool socks! Wool is a coarse fiber, about as thick as a human hair (80-100 microns or so) and can cause itch and irritation. It too absorbs moisture, as much as 30 percent of its weight! This moisture in wool has an odor all its own. Additionally, wool contains lanolin which is a fairly popular allergen. Many people are allergic to this old world staple.
What then to you use to keep your feet happy and healthy? Alpaca! Alpaca is a natural fiber, free from lanolin and naturally hypoallergenic. It is hollow and wonderfully thermal. It does not absorb moisture, rather it wicks it away. It is a super fine fiber with a far better fineness compared to wool; in fact it is so fine that four or five strands equal the width of a single human hair! In other words, it is 25% the size (or 18-25 microns) of wool while being just as warm! So ideally, it is lighter and far less irritating! Just try one pair of Alpaca socks and you’ll be a believer!
The best thing you can do to prevent foot problems is wear a great-fitting pair of socks made from fibers that wick moisture away from feet. Moisture can breed bacteria which causes odor and can contribute to foot fungus and other unhealthy issues. Look for micro fiber acrylics, combined with natural organic fibers; avoid 100% cotton and wool based fibers. Oh, and don’t wear shoes again until they dry completely! Would you get all dressed and then sit in a sauna? I don’t think so! Don’t to it to your feet!