After years of cold feet and blisters, I've finally found the ski sock for me.
Working in a backcountry ski shop, I have the pleasure and privilege of using the best gear available. Skis, boots, bindings, skins, backpack, outerwear, you name it, I have tested the lot and invested in my favorites. However, one of the best gear discoveries I have made so far isn’t the shiniest or sexiest. In fact, oftentimes it is the most overlooked. After years of never being truly satisfied with my ski socks, I couldn’t be happier with the fit, performance, and quality of Dissent Labs Socks. Happy feet are of the utmost importance when spending a day in the mountains, and after spending a season in these compression ski socks, I will never use another brand. Dissent Socks fit great and keep my feet warm and dry across a wide spectrum of conditions. They are more than worth the price of admission.
You know your ski socks are comfortable when they stay on your feet long after the ski day is finished
When you first slip on a pair of Dissent socks the first thing you notice is how tight they fit all over (I was even concerned that I bought mine a size too small at first). However, after a few moments you realize that Dissent socks fit snug in all of the right places, and instead of inhibiting circulation, they enhance it. On the coldest of days my feet stayed warm in the GFX Compression Wool (Green) socks thanks to increased blood flow and merino wool. For people who sweat more in their feet, the GFX socks (orange) feature a lower profile padding which still offers exceptional warmth, but moves moisture away from your feet slightly better.
In addition to the benefits of increased circulation, the compression fit holds its structure and prevents bunching even through the most intensive movements. At Cripple Creek we unequivocally recommend compression style socks because it means the rubbing takes place between the sock and the liner, as opposed to the sock and your foot. This prevents blisters from forming and causes no pain points or distraction. Dissent compression socks are the perfect example of being tight in all of the right places.
Whether a multi-day backcountry trip or skiing resort laps bell to bell, I put my gear through the ringer. For me durability is what sets Dissent Socks apart. I have had many compression socks that feel good during the first uses, but over time fray, start to smell not so great, and most importantly, lose their compression. I have not experienced any of these issues with my Dissent socks. In fact, I wore the same pair of GFX Compression Hybrid Socks (Blue) four days in a row at OPUS hut (purely for research purposes, I promise) and was amazed at the socks ability to shed scent and moisture. After a full season putting my Dissent socks through the gauntlet, the compression feels just as supportive as the first day I slipped these magical threads on my feet. As a result, I am confident in their ability to last.
Navigating through Dissents website it can be easy to feel overwhelmed at the variety of options available and what functionthey serve. However, after testing the lot it comes down to Synthetic vs. Wool. The wool options I’ve skied are warmer and more padded, while the synthetic options better wick sweat. For cold backcountry days and most resort days, I used the merino wool/synthetic option (green and light blue) and enjoyed warm feet. On the other hand, for most backcountry days and those warmer resort days, I used the synthetic option (red, royal blue, orange) and was consistently impressed with how dry and cool my feet kept. No matter which sock you choose, though, you will enjoy the benefits of a compression fit which not only increases circulation, but prevents blisters.
As an avid backcountry skier, the socks I use are subject to more movement and temperature variance than resort skiing. Consequently, this is where most of my problems with socks have occurred. My two main issues have consistently been blisters and cold feet. Since I’ve switched to Dissent, I have used their socks across a huge variety of conditions and applications, and haven't had any of these issues. While the price is more than your typical ski sock, it will outlast the competition, and your feet will most certainly thank you.