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Reviews > Clothing > Socks > Incrediwear Hiking Socks with CBT > Test Report by Michael Mosack

INCREDISOCKS
TEST SERIES BY MIKE MOSACK
LONG-TERM REPORT
January 22, 2012

CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE FIELD REPORT
CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE LONG-TERM REPORT

TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Mike Mosack
EMAIL: mosack(at)earthlink(dot)net
AGE: 48
LOCATION: Lakeside, CA USA and Afghanistan
GENDER: M
HEIGHT: 6' 1" (1.85 m)
WEIGHT: 240 lb (109.00 kg)
FOOT SIZE: USA 14 (EU 48)

I've been backpacking for over 30 years, doing solo and group trips, with and without kids. I do day trips, weekenders and week-long or longer trips throughout the year. I backpack in all climates and seasons, from summer desert trips to Spring/Winter camping in Michigan, California and Grand Canyon, Arizona and I've worked in Afghanistan for 4 years & rely on my equipment constantly. I prefer to go lighter when possible and am always trying new items. Quality and reliability of items are paramount to me over price and weight.


INITIAL REPORT

PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

Manufacturer: Incrediwear
IMAGE 1
Similar product from manufacturer's website

Year of Manufacture: 2011
Manufacturer's Website: www.incrediwear.com
MSRP: US $18.90
Listed Weight: Not available
Measured Weight: 2.8 oz (80 g) is for a pair of socks.
Other details:
Color tested: Red with charcoal gray trim
Available Sizes as listed on the website offer the following:
Small / Medium (Men 7-9.5, Women 8-10)
Large (Men 10-13.5, Women 10.5-13.5)
The socks I am testing: M/L US Men 9.5-13 (EU 41-46).
Product is made in Taiwan.

INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

Incredisocks Bamboo Charcoal Socks hereafter referred to as "Incredisocks" or "socks", are a crew length or mid calf length sock. They are described by the manufacturer as being for dress or athletics. The socks are constructed with a 3 dimensional weave to provide additional comfort and cushioning and the materials used are antimicrobial so as to not need daily washings during repeated use.

The socks I received are not exactly like any of those I found listed on the website. See photos I've included (website photo near the top and the photos of the socks I am actually testing) which show that there is a coloring difference (no two black stripes near the top of the sock on mine. This might not be anything more than a difference in color design of the same sock though. I should also note that in the below image, I have turned the sock on the left inside out to show it's construction.

IMAGE 2
Package contents



The packaging (see photo) is attractive to me and simple in design. It provides quite a bit of information along with instructions and shows infrared imagery as evidence to back up their claim that these socks increase my foot temperature due to increased blood circulation. The packaging lists the information in two languages and gives a natural feel with the photo of a bamboo forest. The color green is consistent with nature, but it does not state whether there is any "Green" technology in the manufacturing processes. I did not locate any actual product warrantee information, but there is contact information listed on the packaging which I think shows that the company stands by its product.

I should note that the packaging for the socks I received and am testing, show the size as M/L US Men 9.5-13 (EU 41-46). This size seems inconsistent with the website listed sizing information.

The manufacturer states, "The socks are made in Taiwan from 5 year old mature Moso Bamboo found in the high mountains of Taiwan. Made from 100% bamboo charcoal and natural fibers" with a further breakdown on the packaging stating, "bamboo charcoal fiber 22%; cotton 48%; flexible fiber 30%."

READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

Washing instructions which are printed on the packaging state, "Wash warm, tumble dry low. Do not bleach. Do not iron. Do not dry clean."

The packaging also states that, "The more Incredisocks are washed, the softer and thicker they become." They further state that these socks are great for diabetics as the socks warm to body temperature, they release good infrared anions that increase circulation; decrease foot fatigue; eliminate odor through antimicrobial properties that help control athletes' feet and they wick moisture away keeping feet dry.

The packaging reflects a side by side comparison using one Incredisock against an "unnamed" brand name sock. The comparison shows that after 5 minutes of wearing each brand, there is a 6.0 degree Fahrenheit (3.2 C) increase in temperature. Ninety-eight percent (98%) of the temperature is due to increased blood circulation, with the Incredisock brand.

TRYING IT OUT

I saw on the manufacturer's website where the company provides 19 individual customer reviews and every one of them reflect a rating of 5 out of 5 stars. The reviews often do not actually clarify the specific product they are reviewing and the same 19 reviews are listed under all of the many different socks I clicked on. I am a skeptical person anyway, so such a high rating without any dissenting remarks seems awfully one-sided. I look forward to testing these socks for myself.
IMAGE 3
Close up of toe

SUMMARY

So far, I like the product. The socks appear to be well constructed and attractive. The website and packaging provide a good amount of information and tout their socks positively. I am interested to see if the customer reviews as listed on the website all reflecting 100% with a 5 star rating, are close to my upcoming experiences with these socks.

I am a little disappointed that there is a conflict with the website sizing chart against the actual product sizing I received. Additionally, there is no specific product listing of the exact socks I received that I could locate on the website. This might just be due to a change in actual color design, but is disconcerting nonetheless. Over all, I am looking forward to testing these new socks.


FIELD REPORT

FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

I have worn these socks approximately 14 times during my daily travels in Afghanistan. The temperatures have ranged from 45 F (7 C) to 80 F (26 C). This is a desert type terrain with a surface ranging from a fine powder type dust to very rocky areas and bright clear sunny skies throughout. The elevations I have traveled during this testing phase have ranged from approximately 2200 ft (650 m) to over 7000 ft (2100 m).

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

When I first felt the socks, I was initially concerned that their texture might not be very comfortable. My how surprised I was. These socks are definitely comfortable. They slide on my feet very easily and I can feel them hug my skin everywhere they touch. I have also noticed that my feet are a little warmer than when wearing other brands of socks. This is not a bad thing at all, despite what I first thought when I read the description of the socks when they were new.

My first test was off with a bang. I put them on brand new without washing them first and left for a four day mission here in Afghanistan. I wore common military approved desert boots and carried just over 100 lb (45 kg) of gear. I left the socks on almost the entire time and took them off only to sleep during two of the nights. I have not had any issues with my feet getting overly warm or sweaty. The socks breathe quite well. The packaging said these socks could handle odor and they were right. I wore my socks inside my boots and at the end of this first mission, a tentative but thorough sniff confirmed that these socks had no odor at all! I was very impressed. On my subsequent trips I have found the same - no odor and these socks are living up to their hype.
IMAGE 4
Incredisocks


I have washed these socks now in a machine and also by hand. I have dried them in the dryer and also by laying them out. They are handling everything just fine. After a lot of abuse, I have found that there is some slight pilling of the fabric. This seems to be caused by friction within my boots more than anything. I have noticed other brands of socks do the same or much worse and am confident that the Incredisocks are handling the abuse just fine so far.

SUMMARY

To date, I have worn these socks many times and I have found that the socks are well made and quite comfortable. They stay up when I pull them up and they stay put when I wear them lower and nearer to my ankle. In other words, they are not quitters. So far the color has stayed pretty true to the original when new and they have not shrunk from the washing or drying. I did notice that some of the white colored letters spelling out Incredisocks have begun to wear off, but this has not affected the actual sock material.


LONG-TERM REPORT

LONG-TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

During this testing phase, I have been in eastern Afghanistan for the majority of the past two months. I have spent nine days with two overnight trips with three nights in the field with my socks, wearing them six times. I have also worn them an additional five times during this same period back at base camp totaling approximately 50 + miles (80 km).

The terrain is a harsh desert environment where temperatures have ranged from highs over 80 F (27 C) to night time lows of 25 F (-4 C). Winter is coming in quickly in this area of Afghanistan. The weather has been mostly clear skies but occasionally there has been rain and even snow at elevation. The terrain is a mix of rocky mountains to sand and very fine dusty areas and the elevations have ranged from approximately 1700 ft (518 m) to over 6000 ft (1830 m).

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

I have not experienced any negative issues with these socks. Throughout the duration of this test, I have found that they maintain their shape and elasticity and are seemingly colorfast. I have hand washed these socks and allowed them to hang dry and have also machine wash and dried them as well. The machine settings have been warm water and the dryer settings I set at low to avoid any chance of shrinkage. I have worn these socks with standard military boots (Rocky C4 Trainers), civilian hiking boots (Oboz Beartooth) and running shoes and the socks have worked well for me each time.

I have worn them pulled up high and scrunched down around my ankle and however I wear them they stay put. They have held their shape and color well. The construction allows for flat seams so there is nothing to rub me the wrong way and I have not experienced any hot spots or blisters at any time with these socks. The socks have shown some minor pilling of the fabric from the very first time I wore them but this has not affected their performance in any obviously noticeable way.

SUMMARY

I think the best feature about these socks is that I do not know they are even on my feet. I forget I am wearing them as they are that comfortable. The socks still do not seem affected by foot odor despite many washings and the pilling of the material isn't getting any worse than any other sock I own. They breathe well. They are easy to clean and they dry quickly.

This concludes my test report. I would like to thank Incrediwear and BackpackGearTest.org for the opportunity to test these socks.

This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1. Copyright 2012. All rights reserved.

Read more reviews of Incrediwear gear
Read more gear reviews by Michael Mosack

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