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Reviews > Clothing > Socks > CEP Dynamic Merino Midcut Socks > Test Report by Gail Staisil

CEP Dynamic+ Mid-Cut Outdoor
Compression Socks

Test Series by: Gail Staisil, Marquette, Michigan

Page Contents:

Initial Report:
July 13, 2015

Tester Information

Name: Gail Staisil
Age: 62
Gender: Female
Height: 5' 9" (1.75 m)
Weight: 152 lb (69 kg)
Location: Marquette, Michigan USA
Email: woodswoman 2001 AT yahoo DOT com

For the last 20 years, backpacking has become a passion. I am a four-season backpacker and an off-trail navigator. Although I do take yearly trips to the American West or Southwest, the majority of my trips are in Michigan. My pack weight varies considerably but my base weight is below 18 lb (8 kg). I am primarily a tarp camper who averages more than 50 nights a year backpacking in a huge variety of weather conditions including relentless rain, wet snow and sub-zero temps.

Product Information

Manufacturer
CEP: Department of medi GmbH & Co.KG
Website  http://www.cepcompression.com
Model Women's Dynamic+ Mid-Cut Outdoor Compression Socks
Colors
Green/Black, Grey/Black, and Brown/Black
Manufacturer  Weight  NA
Tested Weight  2.3 oz (65 g)
MSRP $30. US
Origin
Made in Germany

Initial Impressions and Product Description 


Three pairs of CEP compression socks arrived in great condition. They are all mid-cut in length and one pair of each color was sent. The colors are Green/Black, Gray/Black and Brown/Black. The socks are midweight and are anatomically made. The right foot has an "R" on the right side as well as the left side having an "L" to designate which foot they should be on. They are also labeled as to the model and gender as well as size. No mistakes there. The toe seams are very flat and the socks are very close fitting.


A Little History
CEP Dynamic Socks
CEP is the sports brand of medi GmbH&Co.KG of Germany. The company has been involved for six decades of making compression socks for doctors and hospitals. In 2007 they launched CEP to provide compression socks to the general public for athletic endeavors.


What are compression socks?

Although I was acquainted with compression garments and socks throughout the years, I have never used them during my activities. Reportedly compression socks allow improved blood circulation which helps in preventing muscle soreness and cramps (speeds up lactate metabolism). The compression also provides more stability for muscles and joints. 

Mid-cut compression socks are sized according to the circumference of a person's ankle at the widest point. A handy chart allowed me to pick the size I needed. CEP makes a whole variety of socks depending on the sport a person pursues. There are also different lengths to accommodate needs. The socks I am testing are the Women's Dynamic+ Mid-Cut Compression Socks. That model measures 15-20 mmHg of compression on the arch and ankle areas. Compression at 22 mmHg is graduated from the ankle upward to the top of the socks. 

The compression socks that I am testing are fabricated with Polyamide for durability (64 percent), Merino Wool (18 percent), Spandex (10 percent) and silk (8 percent). The addition of wool and silk to the product should allow them to be comfortable in warm weather.

When I tried on a pair of the socks I gently worked them over my foot and slowly pulled them up my leg to end about 9 in (22.9 cm) above the bottom of my foot. They do feel supportive so it will be interesting to see how they feel during activity. I must say this is a lot more sock than I normally wear for backpacking due to the sock's medium cushion and length. Normally I wear lightweight low-cut socks. 

The socks are guaranteed for six months or 150-200 wearings before compression will lessen.

Looks like the socks are easy to take care in my opinion. They can be machine washed with basic detergent and air dried. However, washing after every use is recommended as the compression profile can be compromised by dirt and body oils. Hopefully on long backcountry trips a little rinsing out will help this situation.

It will be interesting to test these socks in the upcoming months for a variety of outings.

 
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Long Term Report:
December 1, 2015 

USA Locations and Conditions

During the testing period I have spent 29 days backpacking, 10 days car camping and have enjoyed the outdoors most other days. Locations of all trips were in the States of Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Washington and ranged from lakeshore to boreal forest to mountainous areas. Elevation ranged from above 600 ft (183 m) to over 7800 ft (2377 m).

Location of Trip: Isle Royale National Park, Michigan
Length of Trip: 6 days/5 nights (August 21-26)
Pack Weight: 26 lb (11.8 kg)
Sky and Air Conditions: Cloudy, rain, and very little sun
Precipitation: 1.12 in (2.84 cm) 
Temperature Range: 43 F to 78 F (6 C to 26 C) 
 
Location of Trip: Grand Island National Recreation Area, Michigan 
Length of Trip: 2 days, 1 night (September 3-4) 
Pack Weight: 23 lb (10.4 kg) 
Sky and Air Conditions: Warm, humid and sunny
Precipitation: None 
Temperature Range: 58 F to 76 F/14 C to 24 C (Humidity ranged from 71-99 percent) 
 
Location of Trip: Pacific Crest Trail north of Rainy Pass, Mt Rainier National Park, Goat Rocks Wilderness, all in the State of Washington
Length of Trip: 9 days, 8 nights (September 12-20) 
Pack Weight: Approx 28 lb (12.7 kg)  
Sky and Air Conditions: Cloudy, foggy, snow, rain and sun
Precipitation: snow/rain
Temperature Range: 26 F to 59 F (-3 to 15 C) 
 
Location of Trip: Porcupine Mountains Wilderness, Michigan 
Length of Trip: 3 days, 2 nights (September 25-27) 
Pack Weight: 25 lb (11.3 kg) Overloaded with good stuff
Sky and Air Conditions: Warm, humid and sunny
Precipitation: None 
Temperature Range: 57 F to 76 F (14 C to 24 C)
 
Location of Trip: Porcupine Mountains Wilderness, Michigan 
Length of Trip: 4 days, 3 nights (October 2-5) 
Pack Weight: 23 lb (10.4 kg)
Sky and Air Conditions: Cool, sunny and cloudy   
Precipitation: None 
Temperature Range: 28 F to 59 F (-2 C to 15 C)
     
Location of Trip: Cook County/Grand Marais, Minnesota
Car camping trip while doing work/study at folk school and day hiking
Length of Trip: 10 days, 9 nights (October 16-25) 
Sky and Air Conditions: Cold, sunny, cloudy and rain   
Precipitation: 0.58 in (1.47 cm) of rain 
Temperature Range: 24 F to 55 F (-4 C to 13 C)

Location of Trip: Porcupine Mountains Wilderness, Michigan 
Length of Trip: 3 days, 2 nights (October 30- November 1) 
Pack Weight: 23 lb (10.4 kg)
Sky and Air Conditions: Clouds, rain and wind 
Precipitation: 0.76 in (1.93 cm) 
Temperature Range: 31 F to 45 F (-1 C to 7 C)

Location of Trip: Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Michigan 
Length of Trip: 2 days, 1 night (November 9-10) 
Pack Weight: 23 lb (10.4 kg)
Sky and Air Conditions: Clouds and sun  
Precipitation: None
Temperature Range: 35 F (2 C) to 56 F (13 C)
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Trip Talk
 

Besides backpacking the CEP socks have also been worn extensively for trail running, mountain biking and general everyday wear. All three pair have been rotated regularly. Recently I have also worn them for three days of cross country skiing. The socks have been worn with several different types of hiking boots and trail shoes, running shoes, two different pair of camp shoes, bike shoes and cross country ski boots. They have worked well with all footwear.

Foremost what I like about these socks is that they are so comfortable. Even though they are compression socks they are easy to slip on and once they are in place they don't move!! I like not having to deal with socks that bunch up during a long hike. It took me more than a few times to check if I was putting the right sock on the right foot but even if I goofed they were easy to change (It has been easier to mess up with the black and brown pairs as the letters don't jump out at me as much). They have also been comfortable in a wide range of temps from below freezing (32 F/0 C) to around 80 F (28 C). I have worn them wet as well (due to boots leaking) with no ill effects.

As far as comfort I have never really noticed that the compression aspect is tight or anything. It just feels slightly supportive and nothing more. I can't really evaluate if the compression aspect is helping my feet and ankle areas but I have had no issues with them and I haven't noticed any swelling in those areas. Even though the socks don't feel very soft (by touch they wouldn't be the first ones that I would be inclined to select out of my sock selection), I have never had issues with comfort while wearing them.

The tops of the socks fan out a bit...it can be seen in the initial report picture but they look about the same now. I do think the socks are a bit easier to slide on now although they really weren't that hard to put on from the initial wear.

The socks have held up remarkably well for the long haul. I see no thin spots which often happens to some other socks I own. There is some piling and they do seem to attract pet hair. I have no pets of my own but have been around cats and dogs for extended times at family/friends homes...I always walk around in socks indoors with no footwear. The animal hair seems to hold on longer than normal even after going through the wash cycle. And speaking of washing, all three pair have been washed regularly and line dried with good results.

Will I continue to wear these socks?...for certain as they have replaced some of my former preferences. I do prefer low-cut socks in the warm months but I quickly got used to wearing a higher version. I think I would still prefer a low version if I were wearing shorts instead of pants but I have worn them with hiking skirts and it didn't bother me.
 
 
Pros 

  • Remarkable fit
  • Great durability
  • Adapt well with many kinds of footwear

Cons
  • Seem to attract pet hair
  • Expensive
 

Tester Remarks 

Thanks to CEP and BackpackGearTest.org for this opportunity to test the socks. This concludes my Long Term Report and the test series. 

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Read more reviews of CEP Compression gear
Read more gear reviews by Gail Staisil

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