I’ll admit it. My feet tend to stink.
I wander around the house sock-footed, I put my semi-wet feet into socks after swim practice, I ride my bike and run all over town and rarely change socks, and, worst of all, I dunk my shoe-and-sock encased feet in cold river water during paddling expeditions.
Smelly socks are sort of a way of life.
So when a company tracked me down and shipped me three pairs of what they described as odorless socks and asked me to try them, my expectations were about as low as my feet.
The MP Magic socks, made by a Chinese company called MP Glovax, sell for about $10 a pair. That’s probably three times more than you’d pay for a pair of plain old socks, say, at Target or WalMart, but only about half as much as I’ve paid for a pair of SmartWool hiking socks (which I sometimes find on sale for half that at REI.)
The SmartWool socks feel great and last for years, so I’m OK with that. Could Magic socks stack up?
These weren’t just ordinary socks, the Magic socks maker told me. They were made with fabric interwoven with invisible-to-the-eye bits of silver, copper and zinc, which, they claimed, provide antibacterial properties.
I unwrapped three pairs – two extremely thin, crew-high socks (one gray and one black) and one thicker, cushier pair of ankle high sports socks.
Let’s dismiss the thin ones right away. I wore them one day and they weren’t cushy enough and they didn’t stay up – they inched their way down every dozen or so steps. No thanks.
But the sports socks! Soft, tight enough to cradle my foot but not constrict it, and tall enough to stay out of my shoes but short enough that I didn’t have to worry about them sliding down.
I walked around with one Magic sock and one well-worn Smartwool sock. I walked in wet grass without shoes.
Hours later, I bent myself into a pretzel for the sniff test. My old sock stank. The sports sock didn’t stink as much.
Still, I’m not sure – the old sock was, well, old. The test sock was new. That’s probably not a fair comparison.
But here’s the deal.
I don’t care. I’m used to stinky feet, and I’ll continue to abuse my socks. My new Magic sport socks feel good, they fit right, and whether or not they fend off the funk doesn’t matter to me.
I’ll ditch the thin ones and hang onto the sports ones.