New Balance Trail Cushion Performance Quarter Socks Review

The New Balance Trail Cushion Performance Quarter Socks are designed to be worn with their line of trail running shoes.  

Regardless of the recommended shoe, the limited use, average design, and subpar performance make for a sock that isn’t worth purchasing.  

Below we’ll touch on the design, performance, and comfort so you can learn more.


These socks by New Balance are your standard quarter sock.  The sock rises 4.5” from heel to cuff and will cover the talus bone.

Wrapping around the sole and instep is a moderate level of arch compression.  This gentle compression provides a slight bit of arch support while also preventing the sock from slipping off when wearing shoes.

The socks feature a traditional Y-heel pocket.  For the toe area, it’s a standard toe pocket that has the New Balance name knitted into the fabric along the top:

New Balance Trail Cushion Performance Quarter Socks Design

Slightly up the instep, you’ll find a small ventilation panel:

New Balance Trail Cushion Performance Quarter Socks Ventilation Mesh Panel

For composition, these socks are made from 100% artificial fabric.  97% of the sock is polyester, while the remaining 3% is spandex, resulting in a sock with a nice bit of stretch.  

The fabric has some weight and isn’t nearly as thin as the Hanes Men’s X-Temp Comfort Cool No Show Sock we recently reviewed.  

Notably absent in these socks are any treatments to the fabric to reduce odor.

Performance & Comfort

When testing the socks, they performed fair. However, nothing was remarkable when compared to cheaper brands.  

For casual wear, the socks work fine and never had any problem slipping off or rolling down the ankle.  While New Balance markets these socks as having a cushion, it is hardly noticeable.  If you like extra support in your socks, then you will be disappointed with these socks.

The height and color variations make these socks challenging to work into most wardrobes. 

For athletic wear, the mesh panel on the instep isn’t large enough to provide adequate airflow to your toes – especially if you are hiking in warm weather or are walking on a treadmill indoors for an extended period.  Again, the lack of cushioning support makes these socks not nearly as comfortable.

The modest 4.5” rise in the sock does not protect from low-lying branches, bushes, ticks, and other hazards when hiking outdoors.  

Washing Requirements

No special washing requirements here.  Machine wash cold with like colors.  Tumble dry low.

Color Variety

The pack that we purchased came in several different patterns.  You can find several more color variations on the New Balance website.  However, the bold colors will make these socks challenging to match your outfit.


The value is good but not great, with an MSRP of $17.99 or $3.00 per pair.


Overall these socks are very niche and work for only a few occasions, with the most notable being trail running. So if you are looking for a cushioned and casual sock, these simply aren’t for you.


  • Stretchy material provides a good fit.  
  • Moderate arch support.


  • 100% artificial fabric.
  • Small ventilation panel for the instep.
  • Limited use.
  • Not great value.

Overall Rating: 2.6/5

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