Man Up: Go Sockless

For us guys, there aren’t a ton of opportunities to show some skin. But mild weather invites cuffed clothing—tees, button downs, and pants—as well as sockless footwear. As Jude Law and plenty of others can attest, showing a little ankle is an easy way to personalize an outfit, keep cool, and make any get-up a little sportier. Here’s how to pull off wearing shoes with no socks.

The Timing

Sockless opportunities are primarily dictated by geography, climate, and outfit. East Coasters aren’t going to rock the sockless style much past mid-October, while inhabitants of certain western cities might go without foot mittens year round.

The Footwear

Let your sockless flag fly while sporting boat shoes, loafers, moccasins, canvas shoes, and certain lace ups. Bluchers, bucks, and desert boots lend themselves to the sockless look. Oxfords, by contrast, tend to be stiffer and a bit more blister-inducing. But it can be done—or brilliantly faked, with the help of an invisible liner sock like this one from Taft.

Preventing Odor

In the absence of socks, there are several ways to absorb the moisture that causes foot odor. Cedar wood shoetrees will soak up sweat, but only after the fact. And of course, rotating shoes frequently and washing your dogs with antibacterial soap will prevent odor-causing bacteria. It’s difficult to imagine a bar of soap better suited for your feet than Kiehl’s Ultimate Man Body Scrub Soap. And of course, non-asbestiform talcum powder is perfect for odor-prone hotspots like your feet. Sprinkle a palm-full into your shoes in the morning (and throughout the day) to keep your feet fresh, smooth, and dry. For an added cooling agent, try Bálla Powder Tingle, which delights toes with pleasant menthol.

Faking It

Loafer socks will allow you to appear sockless while absorbing moisture that contributes to foot odor. Even Thom Browne, the supposedly sockless superstar of menswear, has confessed to wearing these.

Jeff Cripe

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