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Defeet Woolie Boolie Socks



A warm, good-value answer to the winter toe blues

At every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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American company DeFeet is  perhaps best known or its Aerator summer socks, but it does a pretty mean line in winter socks too. The Woolie Boolie sockas are made from every discerning rider's favourite material, Merino.

Or at least, a Merino blend with a bit of nylon and Lycra thrown in for good measure. It's all a bit unclear: DeFeet does not specify on its website, and the UK stockists differ in their claims: 64% or 72% Merino? Difficult to say. I suppose the other bits are important to help the sock keep its shape (which it does very well), and the Merino for all the super-material qualities we are told it possesses: warmth, sweat wicking and anti-bacterial (and hence anti-pong) properties. A certain other purveyor of high-quality Merino goods also has a similar blend in its winter socks, so it sounds like both companies have hit on the right idea.

Unlike some winter socks, or hiking socks, say, there's no variation in the Woolie Boolie's thickness - no padded heels or toes. They're quite slim and seem to be knitted unusually - a little bit coarser than some, with the inner characterised by a sort of looped yarn, which gives texture, almost like a towelling material. It's very pleasant, and the Woolie Boolies are certainly warm, performing well in either winter boots or regular shoes and overshoes.

In the coldest conditions — all-day rides when the temperatures were staying below 5°C — I wore a normal pair of socks underneath, and never had cause to complain. My circulation is pretty poor, so it's great to be able to ride for hours without a second thought about the extremities. Commuting, even in the icy cold, is a cinch, and they stay impressively stink-free.

I'd recommend Woolie Boolies without any hesitation. They're very good value, and I've taken to wearing them when in civvies, and even around the house. Some people have reported they shrink slightly when washed, but I didn't find this, on a cool wool cycle. My only gripe: the base model is fairly short in the cuff. 2.4in to be precise. However, there are now several more options, including a knee-length Woolie Boolie and socks with six-inch cuffs, so that's be your calves sorted too.


A warm, good-value answer to the winter toe blues. test report

Make and model: Defeet Woolie Boolie Socks

Size tested: Charcoal - L

Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

Woolen socks for winter riding. Says the website:

"Long before wool became so trendy, we birthed the Woolie Boolie™. When the Woolie Boolie was launched, old Molteni jerseys had long been mothballed. Army Surplus wool pants were undervalued and plentiful. Grandpa's wool sailing sweater and itchy underwear had been digested by Goodwill for at least a decade. The Woolie Boolie re-ignited all of the great memories of wool products past - and brought back none of the shortcomings. Itchy? No. Trusted companion on the most severe missions we go on? Yes. If a pair of socks has ever gotten close to having a true cult following, it's the Woolie Boolie."

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Not much to report, Definitely a Merino blend, but other than that, they're socks. You know, heel, toe, sleeve, cuff...

Rate the product for quality of construction:
Rate the product for performance:
Rate the product for durability:
Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:
Rate the product for value:

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Very well

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Warmth, feel.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Could have been a bit longer.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? I have in the past and I will again

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 31  Height: 1.78m  Weight: 65kg

I usually ride: Cinelli Strato road or fixed commuter hack.  My best bike is:

I've been riding for: 10-20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,


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ajmarshal1 | 10 years ago

I have two pairs, I'd love to get to use them but my Mrs has stolen them for the winter.

Life is unfair.

Metjas | 10 years ago

warm and odour neutralising - I get a welcome now after a 5 hour ride  3

nowasps | 10 years ago

You need plenty of room in your shoes if you don't want cold feet, though. These are quite thick, and won't be much use if they're squeezed tight.

bobbinogs replied to nowasps | 10 years ago
nowasps wrote:

You need plenty of room in your shoes if you don't want cold feet, though. These are quite thick, and won't be much use if they're squeezed tight.

yepp, I agree with that. The socks are very thick and I cannot fit them into my shoes even though my shoes are not a tight fit. I do wear woolie boolies...but for padding around the house as they make very good durable house socks (much more acceptable than slippers!!).

nbrus | 10 years ago

If you suffer from cold feet, its not your socks you should be looking to change, its your shoes/boots.

cat1commuter | 12 years ago

They are great. I wear mine in summer. In summer in the UK they are not too hot.

workhard | 12 years ago

Have owned a pair for three years. Great socks. The best I own in fact.

stuke | 12 years ago

Me to, got a pair for Christmas and they are warm from the moment you put them on

Faroon | 12 years ago

The very best pair of socks I own. Highly recommended.

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