Sourced from several types of goats native to the mountainous regions of Kashmir, cashmere is a fine, soft wool that is found in select socks.
Like merino wool, it delivers a whole host of benefits that make it a sought-after material for folks who want both comfort and style in their socks.
This article will highlight some of the key benefits, drawbacks, and other important information about cashmere socks.
|Soft and silk-like feel
|Provides an insulative and regulated temperature
|Hand wash only; Lay flat to dry
|Falke, Vince Plush, Stems, Loro Piana
The key benefits of cashmere socks
Cashmere socks are sought out primarily due to their comfort. The soft and silk-like feel of these socks is just about unmatched compared to any other material used in socks. As a result, when worn throughout the day, your feet will feel exceptionally comfortable.
Aside from the textural qualities of cashmere, this fiber is rather lightweight and breathable. But unlike other natural fibers like cotton, cashmere can keep your feet warm in the winter and cool in the summer.
Cashmere is expensive
At the top of the list, here is the expense. Cashmere isn’t made in a factory, nor is it massed produced like cotton.
Cashmere must be sheared from goats and then goes through a labor-intensive process of spinning and dying to create the yarns used in fabrics. In fact, one article mentioned that cashmere collected from these goats is only about 150-250 grams of cashmere wool per year!
Such low yields and the fact that the wool must be collected by hand from an animal directly makes this fiber extremely expensive. When browsing online stores, you’ll find that cashmere socks will often cost more than $50 per pair. Stocking your sock drawer with cashmere socks can be a costly endeavor.
When it comes time to clean cashmere, companies that produce the socks recommend that they are hand washed only. Once cleaned, they must be laid flat to dry. Not following these instructions can result in the socks shrinking, stretching, or even losing their shape.
What about blends?
Like all socks, cashmere socks are often blended with several other materials. This helps to reduce cost, improve durability, and add stretch and structure to the socks. If you want to know how this may impact how the sock feels and performs, we recommend referencing our material guide.
How does cashmere compare to merino wool?
Merino wool and cashmere offer similar benefits. Both fabrics are lightweight, breathable, and provide insulation.
However, when it comes to warmth, cashmere is the more appealing option. Cashmere is a thinner fiber and has a higher percentage of air pockets than merino wool, which increases its insulation properties and keeps you warmer. Cashmere is also softer and more lightweight than wool, although it is more delicate, so it should be cared for accordingly.
Merino wool is easier to collect, resulting in a lower average price per gram. This makes it a more affordable option for those who want the benefits of wool without the high price tag.
A few cashmere socks to consider
Very few reputable brands make cashmere socks. However, there are a few that you may want to consider: