Long gone are the stereotypes that compression socks are only for older people. If you are a frequent traveler, then compression socks are a must have for you. Not only will they help you be more comfortable when you’re traveling, but they can also prevent further health issues.
To guarantee you’re as comfortable as possible on your next journey, we’ve created this guide to make sure you have the best compression socks for travel.
Our Top Pick: Our absolute favorite compression socks for flying are the Rockay Vigor Graduated Compression Socks. They are made from 100% recycled materials that ensure they’ll benefit you and your travels for years to come.
Comparison Chart of the Best Compression Socks for Flying
Below is a list of the best travel compression socks. Please click on the product name to read reviews and check prices.
Not convinced that compression socks deserve to travel with you? Keep reading our comprehensive guide and we’ll answer all of your questions from why are compression socks good for you to what are the best travel compression socks.
What are Compression Socks?
Compression socks are socks or stockings that apply pressure to your ankles and lower legs to help increase blood flow. With increased blood flow, your risk of swollen feet and blood clots is decreased. These socks have been proven to benefit people who sit or stand for long periods of time, and those with poor circulation.
Are Compression Socks Good for You?
Do you love to travel? Then the answer is yes, compression socks are great for you. Why? Because getting a pair of good compression socks means you’ll never have to worry about your feet swelling like balloons and having to limp off of planes ever again. By increasing your blood flow, they make flying more comfortable and reduce your chances of pain and discomfort.
While they’re ideal for flying and you should always have an extra pair in your carry-on luggage, compression socks are also common for everyday use by people like hikers, athletes, and nurses. If you’re worried about them being dull and boring-looking, don’t. Many of the best travel compression socks come in all types of fun colors and designs so you’ll be excited about showing them off.
What to Look for in Good Compression Socks
1. Compression Level
The compression level will determine the pressure on your legs and how tight the socks will be. The four levels range from mild (8-15 mmHg) to extra firm (30-40 mmHg), and it’s best to choose your level based on your typical length of travel and any current medical issues, like varicose veins. Those who have problems with circulation will need a higher level of compression, but if you’re just using them for long-haul flights and occasionally hikes like Australia’s Great Ocean Walk, then you won’t need as high of a compression level.
2. Graduated Compression
While some compression socks have consistent compression throughout, others have a graduated compression. Graduated compression socks apply the most pressure at your ankle then the pressure decreases the further the sock goes up your leg. The graduated compression pushes blood back up your leg easier which makes foot swelling less likely.
3. Size and Fit
Other than the fact that poorly fitting socks are uncomfortable, ensuring you choose the right size socks will maximize their effectiveness. Before buying compression socks, be sure to check out the sizing guide. While each manufacturer can have a different sizing chart, often times these guides will not only give a measurement for shoe sizes, but also for the size of your calves. You’ll want the sock to fit snuggly, but you don’t want them to feel too tight.
Buying compression socks made with high-quality materials means that they’ll be productive and hold their shape even after being washed several times. They’re typically made with blended materials to guarantee effectiveness, breathability, stretchiness, and moisture-wicking. These materials normally include spandex, lycra, nylon, and/or polyester, and some blends even help with odor reduction. Because compression socks are thicker than normal socks, you’ll want to make sure the ones you choose have been designed with breathability in mind so your legs don’t get overheated.
5. Men’s Vs. Women’s Compression Socks
While many socks are unisex, there can be some minor differences between women’s and men’s compression socks. For example, if you’re looking for the best men’s compression socks then you’ll want to double check whether the shoe sizing guide is for men, women, or it’s unisex, and you’ll probably also want to choose a more masculine design.
Best Compression Socks Reviews
Without further ado, these are some of the best rated compression socks for flying.
Rockay Vigor Graduated Compression Socks
Rockay Vigor Graduated Compression Socks are 100% recycled and made from materials that offer a higher level of compression, durability, and stability. Made from econyl regenerated nylon, recycled polyamide, and recycled elastane, they have a graduated compression of 16 – 23 mmHg. They boast performance cushioning, breathable mesh zones, and arch support. They were created with an anti-odor coating and an anti-blister construction. These are a great combo of compression sleeves and high-performance socks. For socks that are guaranteed to increase blood flow, reduce soreness, and improve recovery, get a pair of Rockay Vigor Graduated Compression Socks.
Physix Gear Compression Socks
If you ever wonder who makes the best compression socks, the answer is Physix. Built with a stylish design and coming in multiple colors, the athletic fit makes them ideal for traveling, plus they’re also perfect for hiking, long walks, and other adventures. Physix Gear Compression Socks have a compression level of 20-30 mmHg, are double stitched, and are made with high quality materials to give you the ultimate support and compression. These socks are engineered with the latest arch to calf compression technology to give you better circulation than other socks on the market. Made with a washable lycra, you’re going to love how breathable the fabric is no matter how hot it is on the plane. With all that Physix has to offer, it’s no wonder they’re leading the way when it comes to the best compression socks for travel.
Wanderlust Air Travel Compression Socks
Known for being the best compression socks for long flights, Wanderlust has diligently designed these flight socks with your comfort in mind. Unbelievable foot and arch support along with super soft foot padding ensure your feet will be comfy at every stage of your journey. These medical grade socks give you an impressive compression of 25-30 mmHG at the foot and ankle, making them some of the best compression socks for ankle swelling. There’s no need to worry about getting corns or blisters because the design includes a seamless toe box that reduces friction. Great for traveling and everyday use, whether you’re hiking in Big Sur or backpacking through Europe, these premium socks deserve a spot in your bag.
Travelsox TSS6000 Compression Socks
Made in Italy, Travelsox TSS6000 Compression Socks are so great that they have a patent on their compression technology. With graduated compression, these socks have been tested to give you optimal circulation. These are also really good compression socks if you’re prone to sweating. The Silver Drystat material contains ingredients naturally resistant to bacteria, meaning the socks can remain odor-free. The material is also quick-drying, so they’re perfect for when you’re on the go. Coming in a variety of colors, you can be stylish and comfortable while you’re traveling when you choose the Travelsox TSS6000 Compression Socks.
NEWZILL Compression Socks
Let your personality shine through with the NEWZILL Compression Socks. The variety of fun designs are only the beginning of why they highlight the list of the most popular compression socks for flying. Their patented Clima-Pro system is designed to prevent odor formation, ensure reliable temperature control, and enable high breathability. Perfect for travelers prone to leg pain, they were created to help muscle recovery and stimulate blood flow while preventing swelling, cramping, and fatigue. In addition to getting a pair of high quality socks, they also have excellent customer service should any issues arise. You’ll never regret getting a pair of NEWZILL Compression Socks.
SB SOX Compression Socks
Preferred by trainers and recommended by doctors, SB has created some of the best-rated compression socks on the market. The soft, reinforced toe and heel support will give you unrivaled comfort, support, and relief. Their compression technology provides premium compression to boost your circulation which can help your muscles recover and decrease the build-up of lactic acid. While some compression socks only come in a couple colors and sizes, SB SOX Compression Socks come in four sizes and more than ten colors, so you can make sure you have the perfect fit for your feet and style. Some of the best compression socks for men and women, your legs will thank you on your next adventure.
Vitalsox VT1211 Graduated Compression Socks
While they top the list for the best compression socks for air travel, the Vitalsox VT1211 Graduated Compression Socks are also must-haves if you plan on tackling any of the world’s greatest hikes or exploring the best national parks in the US. Their exclusive material is designed to stop the growth of fungus and bacteria while repelling odor. This superior sock even boasts a four-way stretch, meaning you’ll have steady compression through the sock. Each pair has been hand-inspected for construction and quality, so you can be confident you’ll have premium socks for your next flight.
Blitzu Compression Socks
Their distinct design solidifies them as some of the best travel compression socks. Along with the compression therapy technology, Blitzu Compression Socks introduced added stability by including a kinesiology taping design. In addition, the vertical ribbing technology brings extra support to your arch area. The superior structure of the sock offers a 360-degree stretch for greater flexibility and longevity. If you want to know which compression socks are best for you, make sure to try out Blitzu’s elite socks.
BLUETREE Compression Socks
BLUETREE kills their competition when it comes to you getting a good bang for your buck. For the price of one pair of regular compression socks, you can get seven pair from BLUETREE without sacrificing quality. If you’re skeptical, check out the reviews and you’ll see that BLUETREE is a front-runner. They’re super comfortable, even during long-haul flights, and they’re breathable so you won’t have to worry about your legs overheating. The high-performance fabric even keeps your legs protected without restricting your movement. Quality and value are at their best with BLUETREE Compression Socks.
CompressionZ Compression Socks
While CompressionZ Compression Socks were created to help your leg pain, they’ll also add some fun in your life. Along with the unique colors and patterns, these socks offer a medical-grade compression that will make your travels not only bearable, but comfortable. As a thoughtful addition, the moisture-wicking cotton material has the advantage of being antimicrobial and antibacterial. Whether you’re taking a road trip through Croatia or flying to the Czech Republic to check out the amazing castles, CompressionZ Compression Socks will soon become your new best friend.
Sockwell Graduated Compression Socks
Sockwell’s cutting edge product is regularly ranked among the best compression socks for women. The four zones of graduated compression mean you’ll get protection where you need it without your toes feeling trapped. Sockwell Graduated Compression Socks are even equipped with Accu-Fit technology so they’ll hold true to their shape even after being washed several times. While they can promote circulation, minimize swelling, and reduce fatigue like many other compression socks, this product goes over the top by providing practical qualities like having the socks made from a moisture-absorbing material with natural odor control.
Long-haul flights and extended road trips can be really tough, but compression socks are an easy solution to making them more comfortable. Once you try out any of the best compression socks for travel, you’ll never want to take off without them again.