Best Compression Socks

Compression socks apply gentle pressure to the legs to stimulate circulation and provide therapeutic benefits. 

From medical conditions like edema and varicose veins to the demands of jobs requiring prolonged standing or sitting, compression socks bring relief and support. They also aid athletic performance and recovery.

But with so many styles and compression levels available, it can be overwhelming to find the right pair. This in-depth guide explores how to select the ideal compression socks based on factors like intended use, compression level, sock height, and material. 


Best Compression Socks, ,Male Runner Wearing Orange Socks and Rubber Shoes
Best Compression Socks, Male Runner Wearing Orange Socks and Rubber Shoes


Read on for a breakdown of compression sock benefits, features, and fit recommendations so you can make an informed decision.

How Compression Socks Encourage Blood Circulation

Compression socks work by applying graduated pressure that is greatest at the ankles and gradually decreases up towards the knees. This pressure gently squeezes the leg muscles to promote venous blood flow out of the limbs back towards the heart.

When blood pools in the lower legs due to inactivity or varicose veins, fluid can leak into the surrounding tissues causing pain, fatigue, and swelling. To keep blood circulating, compression socks:

  • Prevent blood pooling in the veins
  • Reduce fluid buildup in the feet, ankles and legs
  • Support vein valve function to inhibit blood backflow

This stimulates circulation while delivering vital oxygen and nutrients throughout the legs for endurance and recovery. Enhanced circulation also reduces associated leg fatigue, discomfort and risk of blood clots.

Key Benefits of Wearing Compression Socks

Wearing graduated compression socks provides both therapeutic and performance benefits:

Medical Benefits

  • Increase blood and lymph flow to reduce leg swelling
  • Improve symptoms of varicose veins
  • Help prevent dangerous blood clots during inactivity
  • Accelerate healing and reduce pain after injury or surgery
  • Ease discomfort from conditions like plantar fasciitis

Everyday Benefits

  • Alleviate fatigue from prolonged standing or sitting
  • Energize and revitalize tired, achy legs and feet
  • Reduce ankle and foot swelling during pregnancy
  • Make long flights more comfortable

Athletic Benefits

  • Enhance circulation to deliver oxygen and nutrients
  • Speed muscle recovery by flushing out metabolic waste
  • Improve stability and proprioception to reduce injury risk
  • Decrease muscle fatigue and soreness during activity

Choosing the Right Compression Level

Graduated compression socks are measured in millimetres of mercury (mmHg) to quantify the amount of pressure exerted. Compression ranges from:

  • Light (8-15 mmHg): Offers comfort during long periods of sitting or standing
  • Moderate (15-20 mmHg): Prevents fatigue and swelling during daily activities
  • Firm (20-30 mmHg): Provides medical-grade compression; requires a prescription over 30 mmHg

Higher, prescription-level compression is required for chronic conditions like lymphedema and post-thrombotic syndrome. Moderate compression effectively treats varicose veins and edema. For travel or moderate activity, light compression relieves discomfort. Consult your doctor for a recommended compression level.

Selecting the Optimal Sock Height

Compression socks are available in a range of lengths suited to different needs:

  • Ankle socks (low-cut): Target just the ankle and foot to reduce swelling; optimal for plantar fasciitis
  • Mid-calf socks: Offer compression below the knee to aid circulation in the calf and shin
  • Knee-high socks: Deliver graduated compression along the entire lower leg and foot; preferred for varicose veins and edema
  • Thigh-high socks: Extend compression coverage above the knee to the lower thigh; often recommended post-surgery
  • Waist-high tights: Compress the full leg up to the lower abdomen; ideal for significant circulatory issues during pregnancy

Knee-high socks are the most popular style as they effectively treat many conditions while being easier to size and put on than thigh-high or tights.

Persons Foot Wearing Compression Socks
Person’s Foot Wearing Compression Socks

Everyday Compression Sock Uses and Benefits

Compression socks provide natural relief and revitalization during common daily activities:

Prolonged Standing

Jobs that require extensive time standing like retail, hospitality, and healthcare take a toll on legs. Compression socks alleviate achy, swollen feet and ankles to boost comfort and stamina.

Frequent Travel

Sitting immobile for hours during flights increases the risk of blood clots. Compression socks stimulate healthy circulation to reduce swelling and fatigue.


Hormonal changes and extra weight strain circulation during pregnancy. Compression socks prevent varicosities and swelling and prevent blood pooling.

Athletic Activity

Improved circulation enhances performance and speeds post-workout recovery. Compression socks reduce muscle damage and post-exercise soreness.


People with diabetes often struggle with poor circulation which causes discomfort and foot wounds. Compression socks aid circulation to heal injuries while preventing leg fatigue.

Compression Stocking Material Considerations

Compression socks are constructed using technical fabrics that provide compression while wicking moisture:

Nylon/Lycra Spandex Blends

The most common fabric with optimal stretch and recovery. Maintains steady compression and wicks moisture.

Cotton Blends

Offers breathability for those with latex allergies. Less stretchy than nylon-based blends.

Wool Blends

Regulates temperature and resists odour. Provides warmth in winter months.

Bamboo Rayon

Made from bamboo pulp. Extremely soft, moisture-wicking and antimicrobial.


Thin yet dense for lightweight breathability. often blended with spandex for stretch.

Try various fabrics to find your ideal balance of breathability, comfort, and compression. Avoid 100% cotton socks as they lack needed stretch and compression.

Best Compression Socks Reviews

Cambivo Compression Socks Review

The Cambivo Compression Socks are an excellent option for travellers and runners seeking durable, graduated compression socks. These knee-high socks come in packs of two and utilize a 3D design for optimal comfort and performance.

The socks are constructed using high-quality materials like reinforced stitching and heel support to prevent wear and tear even after repeated use and washing. This durable construction makes them some of the best compression socks for longevity.

Graduated compression ranges from 20-30mmHg, providing circulation benefits during travel and recovery after exercise. The snug yet comfortable fit stimulates blood flow without being overly tight. The anti-slip cuffs ensure the socks stay firmly in place.

With their breathable, moisture-wicking fabric, these socks make ideal travel companions to boost circulation on long flights and road trips. The graduated compression also aids recovery when worn after runs or workouts.

For those seeking a durable pair of graduated compression socks suitable for travel, running, and medical needs, Cambivo is an excellent choice combining comfort, performance, and longevity.


  • Reinforced stitching prevents holes
  • Compression of 20-30mmHg stimulates circulation
  • Anti-slip cuffs keep socks securely in place
  • Suitable for travel, running, and medical uses


  • Difficult to get on and off due to snug compression

Laite Hebe Compression Socks Review

With their range of colours, breathable fabric, and graduated compression, the Laite Hebe Compression Socks make a comfortable choice for daily wear. These knee-high socks come in value packs of three pairs featuring vivid colours and fun designs.

A Person Jumps on a Log Wearing Compression Socks
A Person Jumps on a Log Wearing Compression Socks

The lightweight, breathable nylon and polyester blend keeps feet cool while the 15-20mmHg graduated compression aids circulation in the legs and feet. While less compressive than medical-grade options, these socks help prevent fatigue and swelling during long periods of standing or sitting.

The smooth toe seam eliminates bunching and irritation in the toes. The Hebe socks stay firmly in place without pinching or slipping. Their thin yet durable fabric makes them a versatile option suitable for work, exercise, or leisurely wear.

For those seeking affordable, all-day compression socks, the Hebe delivers comfort, style, and breathability at a wallet-friendly price point.


  • Pack of 3 pairs in vibrant colours
  • Lightweight, breathable fabric
  • Graduated 15-20mmHg compression
  • Smooth toe seam prevents irritation


  • Thinner than medical-grade compression socks

Rocky Vigor Graduated Compression Socks Review

Made sustainably from recycled materials, the Rockay Vigor compression socks are an eco-conscious choice for all-day wear. These knee-high socks offer graduated compression between 16-23mmHg to increase blood circulation in the feet and calves.

The durable nylon construction features reinforced heels and toes for longevity. Polygiene odour control technology keeps feet fresh during active use. A wide range of colours allows you to add bold style to your socks drawer.

While some users find durability issues over time, Rockay offers a lifetime guarantee against defects. For those seeking a sustainably made compression sock, the Vigor delivers environmentally friendly comfort and performance.


  • Constructed from 100% recycled materials
  • Polygiene technology controls odour
  • The graduated compression of 16-23mmHg
  • Lifetime guarantee against defects


  • Durability concerns over time

Paplus Running Ankle Compression Socks Review

Providing targeted arch support, the Paplus ankle compression socks excel at easing foot pain and swelling during running and exercise. The 20-30mmHg graduated compression zone delivers arch support that specifically aids plantar fasciitis and other common foot ailments.

The moisture-wicking fabric keeps feet dry while the anti-slip cuffs prevent sliding or bunching. Though pricey, the pack of six socks ensures freshness with daily wear. The discreet ankle height appears like standard athletic socks.

For runners and athletes seeking targeted arch compression to prevent pain and fatigue, Paplus combines support and moisture management in a durable sock that fits and feels like an everyday athletic style.


  • Targeted graduated compression supports arches
  • Discreet, athletic sock-like appearance
  • Moisture-wicking fabric keeps feet dry
  • A pack of 6 provides freshness between wears


  • Costly for 6 pack

SB Sox Lite Compression Socks Review

Featuring moisture control and a cushioned construction, SB Sox Lite compression socks excel at relieving fatigue across various activities. The graduated 15-20mmHg compression stimulates circulation from the ankles up to the knees.

The padded heels and toes provide durability during active wear while the moisture-wicking fabric keeps feet dry. Available in two sizes, these unisex socks suit both genders and a range of calf widths. The anti-odor yarns also prevent unwanted smells.

From long workdays to pregnancy and exercise, these socks stimulate blood flow to ease discomfort and swelling. While expensive, the high-quality materials and construction ensure longevity. For those seeking versatile graduated compression socks, SB Sox Lite delivers durable comfort across multiple settings.


  • Padded heels and toes add durability
  • Moisture-wicking fabric controls moisture
  • Available in two sizes to fit wider calves
  • Anti-odour yarns prevent smells


  • Expensive pricing

Hi Clasmix Graduated Medical Compression Socks Review

The Hi Clasmix Graduated Compression Socks deliver therapeutic compression for both medical needs and active lifestyles. Constructed with lycra for flexibility and breathability, these knee-high socks provide graduated compression ranging from 20-30mmHg.

This level of compression makes them an excellent choice for reducing leg swelling, stimulating circulation, and relieving varicose veins and edema. The gradient compression targets the feet and ankles where its impact is greatest.

With their moisture-wicking performance fabric, these socks also excel at energizing muscles during and after cycling, running, and other sports. A wide selection of colours and designs suit both men and women.

Those seeking robust graduated compression for medical needs or athletic performance will appreciate the versatile functionality of the Hi Clasmix socks. Their therapeutic construction brings relief across medical conditions, fitness activities, and daily wear.


  • Graduated compression from 20-30mmHg
  • Stimulates circulation and reduces swelling
  • Moisture-wicking fabric keeps feet dry
  • Suitable for medical needs and active lifestyles


  • Snug compression may feel tight for some

Charmking Compression Socks Review

The Charmking Compression Socks deliver quality at an affordable price point with their value 3-packs featuring a spectrum of colour choices. The knee-high socks provide light 15-20mmHg graduated compression to stimulate circulation and reduce fatigue.

The smooth toe seams ensure all-day comfort while the mesh ventilation zones enhance breathability during wear. The elastane and nylon blend offers a soft, stretchy performance. While thinner than medical-grade options, these socks energize and support legs and feet during extended sitting or light activity.

With their variety of colours and budget-friendly 3-packs, the Charmking compression socks promote stamina and vigour whether relaxing at home or powering through busy workdays. Their comfort, breathability, and gentle compression aid wellness during daily routines.


  • Light 15-20mmHg graduated compression
  • Value 3-pack in assorted colours
  • Smooth toe seams prevent irritation
  • Mesh ventilation for breathability


  • Thinner fabric than medical options
  • Varying prices between colours

Azengear Compression Socks Review

Providing robust graduated compression at an affordable price point, the Azengear Compression Socks stimulate circulation in the legs and feet. The 20-30mmHg of graduated compression promotes blood flow to relieve discomfort from varicose veins, edema, and prolonged sitting or standing.

The blended fabric of nylon, elastane, and lycra offers breathability and flexibility during wear. Cushioning in the heel and toe ensures everyday comfort while double-stitched seams enhance durability during active use.

In understated colours and a unisex design, these socks support wellness discreetly. Their high compression brings relief without an exorbitant price tag. For those seeking an economic option for boosting circulation, Azengear delivers therapeutic compression and breathable comfort.


  • 20-30mmHg of graduated compression
  • Affordable pricing
  • Durable double-stitched seams
  • Cushioned heels and toes


  • May slip down a calf during active wear

RelaxSan 920 Unisex Graduated Compression Socks Review

Offering robust compression in a cotton blend, the RelaxSan 920 compression socks deliver comfortable stimulative support. Graduated compression ranges from 22-27mmHg applying therapeutic pressure from the ankles upward.

The cotton fabric ensures breathability while remaining soft against the skin. With no elastic or synthetic materials that may irritate sensitive skin, these socks make an excellent choice for relieving discomfort from varicose veins, leg swelling, and prolonged sitting or standing.

Their knee-high length provides coverage while the variety of colour options adds style. For those seeking sturdy compression without skin irritation, the RelaxSan socks promote circulation and energize legs discreetly.


  • 22-27mmHg of graduated compression
  • Soft, breathable cotton blend
  • No irritating elastic/synthetics
  • Variety of colours


  • Lack of performance features for exercise

ZaTech Compression Socks Review

Providing support and pain relief, the ZaTech Compression Socks utilize targeted compression zones to ease foot discomfort and aid recovery. Strategic compression in the heel, arch, and Achilles areas brings relief to common pain points.

The breathable polyamide and spandex fabric controls moisture during active wear while flat toe seams prevent irritation. Available in crew and knee-high lengths and multiple colour choices, these socks support feet during fitness, work, or daily activities.

While providing more moderate compression ideal for injury prevention, the ZaTech socks deliver noticeable relief from foot fatigue and swelling. Their zone compression technology combined with a breathable fit makes them a versatile option for active wellness.


  • Targeted compression zones for feet
  • Relief for foot pain and swelling
  • Moisture-wicking, breathable fabric
  • Multiple lengths and colour choices


  • More moderate compression level


Choosing the ideal compression socks requires understanding your needs and the many variables around fit, features, and sock construction. 

Consider activity level, desired compression strength, sock height, and material comfort. Consult a doctor for guidance on compression level and usage instructions.

With the right socks, graduated compression therapy alleviates the discomfort of varicose veins, edema, and prolonged sitting or standing. It energizes legs during pregnancy and workouts while speeding post-exercise recovery. 

Follow sizing and usage directions for optimal security and relief. With this comprehensive guide’s advice, finding your perfect pair of compression socks is simple. 


Back to top button