Angles: Should you wear socks to bed?


Ever since the eighth century B.C. (when socks were invented), humanity has strived to answer one essential question: Is it, or is it not, good for you to sleep with your socks on? 

This divisive issue has been the source of many sleepless nights for those on either side. Those who are pro-sock argue that feet get too cold if left to the night air. Anti-sockers say that sufficient blankets take care of the cold and that socks are simply too tight to sleep in.

And what of the monsters under the bed? Do socks provide a necessary extra layer of protection? Or do sockless feet have an easier time staying under the covers where it’s safe?

So, what constitutes a good night’s sleep? Socked or sockless? Can a bedtime routine only be complete with a warm pair of socks on your feet, or is it better to let your toes be free?

Yes, socks keep feet warm by Ann Madson

It’s been a long day. You’re utterly exhausted, and you’ve dreamt about your bed all day long. You finally curl up under the covers, ready to sleep for 24 hours straight, but there is one thing precluding your much awaited good night’s sleep. 

You toss, you turn, but nothing has the power take your mind off the fact that your feet are absolutely freezing. Luckily, modern technology has solved this problem with an ingenious solution—socks. 

I am aware that sleeping with socks is considered taboo, even unethical. However, as a chronic sufferer of cold feet, socks are not only a luxury, but a necessity. Why would I deny myself a good night’s sleep when there exists such a simple (dare I say fashionable?) solution to my cold feet?

I don’t mean to be dramatic, but people who spread vicious lies about how wearing socks to bed makes you a social outcast lack the ability to empathize. If you truly cared about me or my well-being, you would want me to sleep in my socks.

Instead of fixating on something as innocuous as sleeping in socks, let’s shift our focus to true problems that are more disruptive to sleep and deserving of social backlash. 

I’m talking about snoring, sleep talking or sleep walking. These are hard to ignore and actively disturb another person’s sleep. Did anyone see the Hulu documentary “Dead Asleep,” where a man murdered his friend while sleepwalking?

Yeah. I have never killed anyone by sleeping in my socks.

I have been asked who my stylist is when people see how well my pajamas coordinate with my fuzzy purple flower socks. 

For those who are blessed with good circulation and warm feet, I am happy for you. However, speaking for the rest of us, I feel hurt that a measure of self-care has been twisted into something to be ashamed of — even ostracized for. 

So I say this to you, fellow bedtime-sock-wearers who are too ashamed to come forward. Be proud. Be bold. And wear your socks to bed.

No, socks are foot prisons by Arden Koenecke

It’s been a long day. You just got into bed after taking a nice long shower, and you’re reading a book with a glass of ice water next to you, under-eye masks on, ready to settle in for the evening.

You finish the chapter, reach over to turn off your lamp and snuggle in to fall asleep. Suddenly, a wave of discomfort washes over you. After that wonderful self-care routine, what could possibly be wrong? Why can’t you fall asleep? 

You look down. You’re wearing socks.

Yes, those dreaded foot prisons that restrict our toes and keep us so warm it wakes us up in the middle of the night. I am firmly anti-sleeping-with-socks-on.

I need to start by saying that I’m not anti-sock altogether. I almost always have socks on during the day, even when just hanging out at home and, yes, even when wearing sandals, but that’s an argument for another time. But at night, socks are simply too much.

When already packed under a comforter and usually an extra blanket, they keep my feet too warm when I sleep. I lie there at a perfect temperature, just fine until I realize that my feet are swaddled in heat traps, and it makes me feel so gross that I can’t focus on anything else. 

According to the National Sleep Foundation, it’s better for body temperature to sleep with exposed feet. The feet contain blood vessels called arteriovenous anastomoses that expel more heat from the body than other places.

When we restrict our feet with tight things like socks, our bodies aren’t able to get rid of heat effectively. This phenomenon can be great for cold feet while walking to class in the winter, but why would we keep all of that discomfort trapped in when trying to sleep comfortably?

If my feet get too hot under the comforter with socks on, what am I supposed to do? Stick my feet out from under the covers where monsters under the bed get prime access to my piggies? Or should I attempt to shrug my socks off, and surrender another perfectly good pair of socks to the sea of sheets and covers?

There are no good solutions for getting too hot with socks on, but there are plenty of other solutions for cold feet at night. If anyone’s feet are really cold enough that they feel like they need to wear socks to bed, I would urge them to add another blanket or turn up the temperature of their room.

While bedtime sock wearers will try to convince you otherwise, it’s hard to see their behavior as anything other than sacreligious. Why would you fall into the trap of this social taboo when there are so many other, more socially acceptable solutions?

So, be cool, keep your feet cool and let your toes run as free as your dreams.

SEE NEXT: Angles: Which is better: coffee or tea?

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