Everything you always wanted to know about toe socks, but never dared to ask.

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What are toe socks?

Toe socks are socks that have their own pocket for each individual toe. In this way, they follow the shape of the foot exactly - and give you freedom of movement.

Are toe socks from Japan?

Toe socks are widely used in Japan, but they are not "traditional Japanese socks". They were first machine-made in Spain in the 1970s, but knitting instructions for five-toe socks can be found as early as the 1950s. In Japan, they were still unknown at that time.

Takahiro Idobata founded the first Japanese company to exclusively produce toe socks in 1981 and established them as a normal item of clothing in Japanese wardrobes. Today, 8% of socks sold in Japan are toe socks - by comparison, in Germany the figure is less than 1%.

The so-called tabi socks, on the other hand, are traditionally Japanese: only the big toe is kept separate. They are still part of the traditional festive garb and are worn with traditional wooden sandals called geta. For Japanese carpenters, they are part of their workwear, as they traditionally wear black tabi shoes. Nowadays they are also widely used in martial arts.

They are also called split toe socks and are often worn with flip-flops.

How are toe socks made?

Each of our socks is machine-prefabricated on knitting machines developed by Knitido and then finished manually. This requires a lot of patience, manual work and experience, but it is the only way we can guarantee our high quality standard.

Are toe socks hand-linked?

Normal socks are usually made in a circular knitting machine like a tube. You start at the top of the waistband and knit down to the toe area. The socks are then ejected from the machine and sewn together at the front.

At Knitido we start knitting with the individual toe pockets and knit all the way to the cuff. This allows us to completely go without seams and linking. Open threads that arise from the knitting process are pulled by hand into the inside of the sock.

Aren't Japanese toe socks too small for European feet?

That's right. That is why we have adapted our knitting machines to "European feet".

Do toe socks help against cold feet?

Mostly, the toes are squeezed together in "baggy socks" and too tight footwear. Their individual freedom of movement is restricted, their sensory system limited. As a result, the musculature of the toes is not very pronounced compared to "free toes", and blood circulation is restricted.

Toe socks give the individual toes space again and improve their sense of touch. Stimulated by this, your toes move more, feel more and participate in the walking process again. In addition, they keep the spaces between the toes dry, so the feet do not cool down so quickly.

Isn't it like when wearing gloves? Mittens keep you warmer!

Toe socks activate the individual toes and integrate them back into the walking process. This improves the blood circulation in the feet and legs. As a result, their heat balance also improves.

Do toe socks help against sweaty feet?

Yes, toe socks help against sweaty feet.

In "normal baggy socks" that enclose the whole foot, moisture collects between the toes. The sweat cannot evaporate but remains in place on the skin.

Toe socks can help with sweaty feet by first absorbing the moisture in the fabric and then wicking it away from the skin. Since they now have a porous fabric between the toes, air can flow in and the moisture can evaporate.

Do toe socks help against foot odour?

Yes, toe socks basically provide a better heat and moisture regulation.

As the feet remain dry, especially in the toe area, less sweat accumulates. And only in a humid climate can bacteria and fungi develop, which ultimately lead to the bad smell.

I have bunion. Do toe socks help?

Yes, with our products for foot malposition support you can counteract this problem to varying degrees:

By widening the position of your toes. This is what Knitido toe socks do anyway, by placing two strips of fabric between your toes like little wedges. The CorrectToes orthosis supports this process even further.

By compressing the metatarsus with a slight compression. The joint affected by the bunion is directed outwards, into its original position, and relieved.

By using socks like Kinesio-Taping to pull the big toe into its original position - only without tedious taping: Taping Socks in different strengths are suitable for this.

By moving your toes more, you strengthen the muscles of the foot.

All of this already leads to a relief of the pain for many of those affected - however, we do not promise you a cure, there are too many causes for this disease.

In any case, however, we recommend that you do more good for your feet: get advice from a podiatrist, attend a running training session and get to know your feet anew. You will be amazed at how much your quality of life improves.

Are there toe socks made of silk or another thin fabric?

Silk is a true miracle material of nature. In summer they cool the foot - in winter they keep it warm. That's why we have a whole collection of silk toe socks called Knitido Silkroad.

If silk is too delicate for you, we recommend toe socks made from fine Supima cotton.

Do you need something sportier? Then our Track & Trail series made of thin, lightweight sports materials is right for you.

Are there 100% cotton toe socks at Knitido ?

No, 100% cotton makes no sense for toe socks.

The reason for this is that the sock itself and the toe pockets need a certain amount of stretch and shape retention. This is because everyone's feet and toes are different.

That's why we knit a thin elastane thread together with the cotton threads. This ensures that the sock pulls back into the right shape after stretching. To ensure the shape retention and durability of the sock, we need a certain amount of nylon.

But: of course we think that cotton or natural fibres such as wool belong in everyday toe socks. We only use synthetic materials when they have to fulfil a function, e.g. during sports.

Do you use mulesing-free merino wool?

All models in the "Cotton and Merino" range are made from New Zealand merino wool. Mulesing is not necessary in New Zealand. The remaining models with merino wool are made from Australian merino wool. For these products we cannot guarantee that no mulesing has been applied.

Do you also have toe tights?

No, we have to pass, we don't have toe tights. At the moment, we are reaching the limits of what is technically feasible for us - and it doesn't seem very practical to us either.

Are toe socks as durable as normal socks?

If you choose the right sock size, toe socks have a very good durability.

The use of high-quality materials and over 40 years of experience in manufacturing toe socks form the basis for this.

However, individual foot characteristics and care have a major influence on durability. Hard footwear, rough heels, long toenails, excessive wearing or punctual stress while walking, for example, cause holes to appear early. For a long life of our toe socks, please pay attention to our care instructions.

What do I need to consider when washing my toe socks?

When washing your toe socks, make sure that you first pull the socks from the heel when taking them off and then "pluck" the individual toes. This way, the toe pockets will not twist into each other and will get properly clean when washed.

You can wash the toe socks normally in the washing machine, please follow the washing instructions. After washing, you can simply hang your socks to dry on the line.

To be particularly gentle on delicate materials such as silk or wool, we recommend using a laundry bag.

Do I have to pay attention to anything when putting on toe socks?

Do I need more space in the shoe with toe socks?

When wearing toe socks regularly, the toes return to their original, slightly open position. This is a good thing. If you have been wearing shoes that are too tight and have squeezed your toes together, it is possible that after a few months you will naturally choose the next shoe size or slightly wider shoes. Rest assured - you are doing the right thing.

Shoes that are too tight can lead to deformities such as overlapping toes, stunted toes, hammer toes or bunion over the years. Toe socks help you prevent this from happening in the first place. They strengthen your feet and your toes.

Are toe socks suitable for barefoot shoes?

Yes, definitely.

Both tabi socks and toe socks are an ideal addition in barefoot shoes, for a healthy, gentle gait.

Are toe socks suitable for five finger shoes?

Five finger shoes can be worn barefoot, but in some cases they feel better in socks.

Choose thin toe socks for this, e.g. from the Track & Trail line.

Do you still have questions? Just get in touch with us, we will be happy to help you!

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