By Derick Redfeather
Comfort is the first thing you might notice when you slip on a pair of Heat Holders socks. Heat Holders have been big in the U.K. for some time, but they are a new entry into the North American market.
A couple pair of Heat Holders where popped in the post right about early January 2012, with winter in full swing. Single-digit days and relentless mountain winds pierced the body with bone-numbing cold. Heat Holders use modern methods of creating long looped piling out of the cotton yarn. This piling effect creates a thermal lofting which gives thickness and cushion to the sock, while it also creates air-pockets and a warmth creating thermal insulation.
With thick thermal piling warm air is trapped close to the skin. This cushiony thermal piling also tends to wick moisture away from the skin, and that’s a characteristic of Heat Holders that breaks away from traditional all-cotton socks. With the cold temperatures of this Rocky Mountain winter, sometimes you go to bed with your socks on. These Heat Holders where worn for several days in a row. Odor and moisture management were acceptable and not much noted difference that wool-blend socks.
As comfortable as Heat Holders socks are, the “Gentle Grip” version we used tended to be a little to gentle on the grip. Although the comfort level is excellent, the socks didn’t appear to have enough elasticity to feel snug and secure on the feet. That’s ok when activities are leisurely, but in hiking, snowshoeing, or alpine terrain, loose-fitting socks can be a drawback. In my view, it is possible Heat Holders “Gentle Grip” could be a little more secure on the feet.
With a Thermal Overall Grade (TOG) rating 2.34 in warmth value, Heat Holders socks are said to be more than seven times warmer than traditional cotton socks. We found Heat Holders socks thermal technology to be relatively warm in winter conditions where temperatures didn’t go too far below freezing.
We used Heat Holders socks with insulated and non-insulated boots this winter. With insulated boots, Heat Holders were warm and are extremely comfortable in single-digit temperatures. With non-insulated boots worn in temperatures 15 to 25-degrees F, at least this writer’s feet got cold. And it should be stated that most every individual has different levels of healthy blood circulation and tolerance to cold.
Just because the claim of being seven times warmer than traditional cotton socks is valid, it doesn’t clear the hurdle of wearing Heat Holders in truly frigid temperatures into the single digits without insulated boots.
The innovative technology of Heat Holders is impressive. Economically, Heat Holders offer a lot of comfort and warmth in sock that retails in the range of $15 to $20 a pair. Heat Holders come in many colors and year round styles for men, women, and children. But it really gets down to individual requirements and what the socks will be used for. For daily wearing in cool to moderately cold weather, Heat Holders work fine.