Is Going Sockless Bad for Your Feet?

Stylish French and Italian men have been baring their ankles for years, and now the sockless trend has reached the fashion mainstream for men. If you’re thinking about rocking a pair of loafers — minus the socks — medical professionals want you to know that you could be putting your feet at risk. That’s because socks serve two important functions: they reduce friction between the shoe and the skin, which prevents blisters and abrasions; and they provide a physical barrier between the foot and the microbial petri dish that is a sweaty shoe. Just in case you’re wondering if you now have to wear socks with your sandals, any open-toed shoe allows for circulation, so they can be worn without socks. The No. 1 threat to wearing shoes with no socks is athlete’s foot fungus. Podiatrist Dr. John Chisholm makes a good point: "Wearing shoes day after day without socks would be like wearing your underwear day after day without washing them.” If you just can’t stand wearing socks, try going with the “no-show” socks. The extra-low-cut socks are designed to stay hidden below the shoe line while providing protection against blisters and sweaty feet.