Whether you are a beginner or an avid racer with a lot of experience, one of the most often overlooked components of your sim racing setup is what you wear on your feet. However, this can be very important to consider if you want to perform at your best. So, what are the best socks for sim racing?
The 5 best sim racing socks are:
- Puma Active Gaming Socks
- Compressport Pro Racing Socks
- LUX Anti-Slip Soccer Socks
- Rative Anti-Slip Socks
- TractionSocks Five Toe Non-Slip Socks
Socks are often not the first thing that comes to mind when setting up your racing rig, but we will explain below the kinds of things to look for when choosing the right ones for you. Then, we will go into each of our top 5 picks to help you make an informed decision.
What To Look For In Sim Racing Socks
As with any piece of sim racing equipment, although it may seem odd to categorize socks as equipment, there are a few things you need to consider in order to make sure that you make the right purchase decision for your specific needs. Socks are not the most expensive part of your setup, but they can still be very important, so you need to put some thought into it.
Do You Want To Wear Socks?
First, you obviously have to want to wear socks for sim racing in the first place. We have discussed in another article the advantages and disadvantages of wearing socks, shoes and going barefoot, and if you are struggling to choose, we recommend checking that article out. At the end of this article, we will mention some options to consider if you would prefer to wear shoes.
The Comfort Factor
When it comes to socks, and indeed shoes as well, the first thing you will want to consider is the comfort factor. You are going to be wearing them for long periods at a time and so you need to be comfortable doing that. Things that affect the comfort of sim racing socks include the size and also the materials from which they are made.
The comfort factor is made up of a few sub-factors, with the general feel of the sock being very important, but also the breathability of the sock too. As you will probably be wearing them for extended periods of time, you don’t want your feet to get too hot and sweaty, as this will be uncomfortable. Finding socks that feel good on your feet but also keep you cool is vital.
When you go to buy new socks, the manufacturer will usually list the kinds of materials used to make them, such as 70% cotton or 60% polyester. Cotton offers a lot of comfort and some moisture absorbance, while it may be combined with the durable polymer nylon to drive moisture away from the foot, and to offer some strength and longevity to the socks.
The choice of material will usually be down to personal preference, and there are so many different combinations out there and it can be quite overwhelming in terms of which one is right for you. In general, cotton blends offer an ideal mix of comfort and durability, while also looking quite good and being forgiving. This last point essentially means they offer a good fit.
How They Look
The way the socks look may also be an important factor for you to consider. There are countless color combinations and styles out there on the market, and so there is bound to be a design for everyone. Each of the socks on our list looks very different from the next, and so we have tried to include an option to suit any style and taste, but we would argue that looks are not the most important thing.
The Grip They Offer
An important thing to consider for sim racing socks is the amount of grip that they offer. Shoes obviously offer the most grip for your pedals, but if you want to stick with socks, you will want to go for a set that offer some grip on the soles. This helps to avoid accidental slips off the pedals, which can prove to be disastrous in a racing situation.
You may wish to opt for socks with rubber grips on the soles, or just on the ball of the foot instead. There are some options that offer stickier grips, while for certain driving techniques, such as heel-toe, you may wish instead to still have some slip so that you can easily move your foot across both pedals. Once again, this will come down to personal preference.
There are various other things to consider, such as shape and design, as well as brand and price, but these are quite minor factors, and probably won’t have too much influence on your purchase decision. Anyway, now that you know what to look for in a set of sim racing socks, let’s go into more detail about each of the choices on our list.
The 5 Best Sim Racing Socks
1. Puma Active Gaming Sock
Taking the top spot on our list is an entry from Puma, with their Active Gaming sock that is designed specifically for gamers. Puma markets this sock as an all-round gaming sock, rather than just being for sim racers, however it is probably obvious that sim racing is the e-sport that will benefit the most from a piece of footwear.
This racing sock is almost like a hybrid between sock and shoe, with its appearance being similar to a lace-less running shoe crossed with an ankle sock. It has a sleek black design, offering a look that will fit in with any racing setup. Although it may look a bit like a shoe, Puma state on the site and on the box that it is designed for indoor use.
This becomes apparent when you actually hold the sock/shoe as well, as it has a lightweight, racing feel to it that tells you that you wouldn’t want to wear these outside.
The Puma Active Gaming socks offer a snug fit, offering both comfort and breathability. Perhaps most importantly, they offer a lot of grip on the sole in a low-profile fashion, so that you can have maximum grip without feeling too much of a wedge under your feet. They also feature several layers of different materials, which adds strength without compromising on comfort.
Puma does advertise these socks as having several different “modes”; however, this seems to be simply flamboyant marketing, and it doesn’t appear to add much to the experience. Nonetheless, given the fact that these socks are designed for gaming, they take the top spot on our list, although they are quite expensive, and so are really only for serious racers.
2. Compressport Pro Racing Socks
Designed For Running, Ideal For Sim Racing
Next up we have the Pro Racing socks from Compressport. These socks are designed for running, but they are actually very good at serving as sim racing socks as well due to their design. They come in two forms, both low and high cut, and this means you have a bit of flexibility when it comes to style, with both at a similar price point.
As these socks are designed for running, they offer a good balance of comfort and support for your foot. This is aided by the compression band around the arch of the sock that helps to keep them in place. They also feature some built in ventilation, with vent bands around the sock that allow for extra air flow and thus prevent your feet from getting too warm.
Very Well Designed
The socks offer even more sweat prevention with their fast-drying fibers. One of the other benefits of a sock being designed for running is the fact they are designed to promote blood flow, which is very useful when sim racing as you will find yourself sitting quite a lot. This helps to prevent your feet from getting uncomfortable, even during long gaming sessions.
The socks also feature anti-slip fabric on the outside, which helps to keep your feet where you want them on the pedals. Unlike the Puma socks however, they don’t feature rubber grips, and so these might be the ideal choice for those that like to use heel-toe in sim racing, as they will still offer grip, without sticking to the pedals too much.
3. LUX Anti-Slip Soccer Socks
The LUX Anti-Slip soccer socks are up next on our list, and they are another pair of socks that are designed for sports rather than e-sports. This is a common feature of the items on our list, purely because there are not that many socks or even shoes on the market designed for sim racing, and it is often socks designed for other sports that serve as a good option for sim racers.
The main selling point of these socks is their anti-slip properties, as they feature grips both on the outside of the sock to grip the pedals, and on the inside so that they stay in place on your feet. This provides a great solution to those that find themselves constantly adjusting their socks on their feet, and those that need extra grip on the pedals too.
One other benefit of these socks is their breathability. As the socks are designed for high-intensity sports like football, you will be able to rest assured that you will have no problems with your feet getting too warm when racing. They also feature comfortable, elastic fabric that ensures you have a snug fit to your feet no matter what size you are.
Reasonable Price Point
These socks come in at an affordable price point, and so are a great option for those looking to enhance their sim racing experience at the beginner level. These are a very good option for those that need extra grip, but also want comfort and breathability.
4. Rative Anti-Slip Socks
Coming in at our number 4 spot are the Anti-Slip socks from Rative. These are another cheap option for those looking for a balance between comfort and grip. They feature a similar design to the LUX soccer socks, but they offer a different material, and have slightly less grip. Nonetheless, they are still a good option.
Good Balance Of Materials
These socks are made from 97% Terylene and 3% Spandex. This means they offer a nice amount of flexibility and so fit well, while also offering a lot of breathability, and very fast drying. This is ideal for those prone to sweaty feet when sim racing, and for those that simply want to ensure their feet are kept cool throughout long and important racing sessions.
The socks are built to last, offering durability and comfort. They also feature grips on the bottom of the socks, which are great for sim racing. They provide just enough grip without being too intrusive, as some rubber grips present on other socks make them uncomfortable to wear around the house on hard floors, and in some cases even on carpets.
A Good Budget Choice
These socks are ideal for those on a budget that still want to up their sim racing game. They are designed to offer support for your feet and are made to last a long time.
5. TractionSocks Five Toe Non-Slip Socks
Finally, we have the Five Toe Non-Slip socks from TractionSocks. These socks are a little bit different, as they offer discrete sections for each toe. This means they offer an experience very similar to that of wearing no socks at all, but they still offer some of the benefits of comfort and grip of racing socks.
The design of these socks is the first thing you will notice, and the discrete areas for each toe means that you can have enhanced control over each toe, which may be important for some racers. Aside from this part of the design, there is also the actual material choice, with its mix of cotton, spandex and nylon providing a good balance between breathability, durability and comfort.
Good Amount Of Grip
Perhaps the most important part of the design of these socks however is the grip on the bottom of them. They feature gripped sections over the sole of the sock, as well as on each toe, which further enhances the non-slip abilities of these socks. The design of these socks means that they may only suit certain tastes, but they are definitely a good solution for those seeking extra grip.
The Best Lightweight Sim Racing Shoes
One of the main reasons that people may opt for socks rather than shoes for sim racing is the issue of weight. Shoes often feel unnecessarily heavy, and if you are a casual sim racer or even one who plays every day, you will probably not want to wear anything too bulky on your feet when racing. This is where lightweight shoes can come in.
A Good Mix
These are ideal for those that don’t want to wear socks, but don’t want to wear anything too big and heavy on their feet. The first option we would suggest in this case would be the lightweight racing boots from Abruzzi. These are used by top sim racers, and they offer a lot of choice in the design due to the ability to have them personalized.
You may instead wish to check out the Alpinestars Tech-1 T shoes, which offer a sleek and thin design which makes them durable but lightweight. The KS-3 shoes from OMP are also a good choice, offering grip, comfort and anti-fatigue features which are ideal for sim racing.
Worth The Money
These options are a little expensive, but the quality you get with each one justifies the higher price points. We go into more depth with each of these shoes in another article, along with a few other options if you are looking for racing shoes rather than racing socks.
If you are looking to take your sim racing to the next level, one of the things you may consider buying is a good pair of sim racing shoes. These come in all shapes and sizes, but they are often quite expensive. Thus, you may instead consider buying a pair of socks that are designed for sim racing instead, as they can be much cheaper.
Although there are not too many options on the market specifically for sim racing, you can make use of the many sports socks on the market that offer a good mix of grip and comfort, such as the Anti-Slip socks from Rative or the Pro Racing socks from Compressport. However, if you want the best, with the added bonus of being designed for gaming, Puma’s Active Gaming socks are the ideal choice.