Cotton vs. Polyester Socks: Which is Better?

Cotton vs. Polyester Socks: Which is Better?

Ancient Greeks tied matted animal hair around their ankles to warm up their legs and feet, while the Romans used leather or woven fabrics. Today, polyester and cotton are the most common fabrics used for making socks. There are many different types of materials used in manufacturing socks and other types of clothing. Since these fabrics are made from a variety of fibres, it is important to know their differences.

Take note that weather conditions should also play a major role in deciding which type of socks to wear. Below is a guide on the key differences between them.


Polyester socks are made of man-made fibers consisting of oil derivatives, while cotton socks are made of natural fibers taken from a cotton plant’s seed pod. Cotton is widely regarded as a versatile and comfortable fibre. It is used for apparel, threads, and other related products. 



They are tremendously soft

Socks made of cotton will feel very comfortable on your feet. Some socks may feel like they constrain your feet, but cotton will feel extremely soft. 

Cotton holds color quite well over time

Compared to polyester, cotton does not hold color as well. However, it will still be long-lasting. Cotton socks will still be safe after many wears.

Cotton is more breathable

Aside from being comfortable and soft on the feet, cotton will be less irritating on your skin and your feet will sweat less. This is a huge consideration when choosing your socks.

Cotton is good for sensitive skin

People with sensitivities, require comfortable, mild clothing materials on their skin. Cotton is more natural, especially if it’s a 100% organic cotton. You’ll be rest assured that there are no chemicals in socks made from 100% organic cotton. 

The only con that cotton has is that it can be slightly expensive than polyester.


polyester fibre

Polyester, being a human-made petroleum-based synthetic fiber, generally lasts longer than cotton if it’s taken care of properly. 

Polyester fades less than other fabrics. It retains the dye it has been colored with for a longer time than cotton and increases the aesthetic longevity of the garments. Polyester also dries quickly than cotton.


Polyester is a fabric that is not easily compostable. It does not break down well in soil, which is not a good thing for the environment. Polyester is also not that breathable. It can make your body sweat because it’s a gretat insulator. 

Polyester is not absorbent. While this may be a positive thing in some regards, this could also mean that it will be more difficult to remove stains than in cotton. Repeated washing can ruin fabrics too. 

Both fibers have their varying uses but choose cotton for your socks. More specifically, 100% organic cotton especially if you have very sensitive skin. 

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