Darn Tough logo among Merino Wool fibers from making merino wool socksDarn Tough sticker logo among Merino Wool fibers from making merino wool socks

Merino Wool

Naturally evolved over thousands of years, we choose Merino Wool for our socks because it’s wildly resilient and incredibly versatile. More often than not, it’s not wool you're allergic to, it’s the kind of wool you’re wearing. Merino Wool is soft and comfortable.
Merino Wool is moisture wicking, making it the best material for socks

Moisture Wicking

As your body heats, Merino Wool absorbs moisture before it turns into sweat on your skin, and releases it, leaving you dry. In reverse, outside moisture is captured before it touches your skin. Meanwhile, cotton is like a sponge.

Merino wool socks are thermoregulating

Thermoregulating

There is a natural crimp in wool fiber that provides pockets of insulation — holding and releasing heat dependent on what the body is doing. Think of it like an insulated mug that maintains cold or heat. Synthetics can mimic but not replicate this behavior.

Merino wool socks are odor resistant, making them the best wool socks

Odor Resistant

Odor resistance is unique to wool. The chemical structure stops sweat and bacteria build-up. So go ahead and take a whiff. It's not impossible to stink up, but it naturally repels odor to the point you can wear them for multiple days before offending.

A close up look at merino wool yarn being turned into a sock on our knitting machines

We Only Use Three Ingredients in Our Socks

Merino Wool, Nylon, and Lycra® are the only yarns we knit into our socks. A pure Merino Wool sock would not have the elasticity to hold its fit, and Nylon strengthens wear zones. The list is simple, but it’s how we do it 
that knits a longer lasting sock.

Some Instincts Aren't Natural

There are more than a few misconceptions about wool, or at least Merino Wool.

Good news - merino wool socks are not itchy

Not Too Itchy

Correct, some wool is rough to the touch, but Merino is silky smooth. Under a microscope, the fiber has a longer, scale-like appearance for a fine, smooth feel.

Merino wool keeps you warm without unnecessary bulk, which is why it's the best for socks

Not Bulky

Our running and casual socks, for example, are incredibly thin. Merino Wool yarn is no thick strand you'd find in the crochet basket. You'd likely call it a thread.

Merino wool socks aren't just for cold weather - they're great in hot weather too

Not Just for Cold

The thermoregulating properties of Merino Wool will surprise you. Our heavyweight socks contain the most Merino Wool content and can be quite pleasant on a hot day.

Sourcing

While we knit, finish, and package all our socks in Vermont, our materials come from all over the globe – Merino Wool primarily from New Zealand. For whatever reason (it’s the environmental conditions) the sheep in New Zealand are still the best. They aren’t the only ones, however, and our Tactical socks are Berry Amendment Compliant, meaning they are completely sourced in the U.S.A.

A sheep standing on a globe to illustrate how we source our merino wool
Rows of Merino Wool cones at the Mill where we knit our merino wool socks

Responsible Wool Standard

We prioritize using Merino Wool exclusively from sheep that haven't been exposed to mulesing. In 2019, we made a committment to support the Responsible Wool Standard (RWS) and shift 100% of our wool supply to RWS-certified Merino Wool. 

Learn More

"Sheep have been running around mountains in wool for thousands of years."

Ric Cabot
President & CEO