How To Care For Your Compression Socks
Compression socks are a wonderful tool that can mean the difference between daily pain and being able to walk around in relative comfort. But compression socks should not be treated like any old pair of socks you pick up in a pack at the supermarket. Compression socks are not only more expensive than regular socks, they need more special attention in order to ensure they don’t break down too quickly and last as long as possible. The following is a handy guide to caring for your compression socks.
Rules for Compression Sock Care
There are four cardinal rules that you need to live by when caring for your compression socks.
Rule #1: Wash them after every use It can be tempting to let your compression socks go a few wears without getting washed, but this can greatly decrease their lifespan. When you wear your socks, oil and dirt build-up on the inside and outside, which can crease their ability to compress properly. In addition to this, the more often you wear the socks, the more fragile the material will become--washing helps refresh the material to keep it sturdy for as long as possible. So, always wash your compression socks after every use; washing at night or in the morning is ideal.
Rule #2: Replace our pair after 2-3 months Even with special care, your compression socks won’t last forever. You should replace them every 2 to 3 months, depending on how often you wear them and how worn out they get. It takes about 2-3 months for the material to stop compressing effectively.
Rule #3: Never use anything but mild soap/detergent on your socks Forget using bleach, fabric softeners, and other special chemicals when washing your compression socks. You should only use mild soap or mild detergent to wash them in order to make sure the fabric material doesn’t get damaged.
Rule #4: Be careful when wearing jewelry and sharp nails Rings, bracelets, and long nails are the enemy of compression socks. Your socks could easily get snagged by jewelry or long fingernails, and snagging will cause tearing which--you guessed it--reduces the lifespan of your socks. Always take jewelry off before putting your socks on, and avoid having sharp nails that could catch on the material when wearing your socks.
You should ideally wash your compression socks by hand so that you can be as gentle as possible. If you can’t wash them by hand, then put them in laundry bag in the washer on the most gentle cycle, following the directions on the back of your compression sock packaging. If you do have time to wash them by hand, however, make sure you follow these tips. Never wring, harshly squeeze, or pull on compression socks when washing them--this will pull the material and ruin their ability to compression. l Only use cold water, never warm or hot. Use mild soap or compression sock cleaning solution only. Lay them flat to dry after rinsing thoroughly.
Remember: The better you care for your compression socks, the longer they will last!