These Italian-made Orro Sportive socks fit as well as they look and are very reasonably priced. They come in three colours and a wide size range that should fit most of us.
Sussex-based Orro makes some sexy-looking bikes and it's added a steadily-expanding range of clothing under its own label. Way back in 2018 I tested some Orro bib shorts and they're still doing great service in the summer of 2022 (where do the years go?).
Since then Orro has added pretty much all the basics and a lot more besides. These Sportive socks are one of half-a-dozen pairs in the range at the time of writing, including some produced specially for Orro by DeFeet.
Orro doesn't reveal who makes the Sportives but they are made in Italy, and very well turned out they are too. It's an all-synthetic fabric, polyamide (which is nylon, essentially) mixed with 15% elastane. There's a stretchy waffle-knit down the shins and a plain-knit at the calf. So far as I could make out, they are a one-piece construction with the only additions being the dark grey heel and toe pieces and a rectangle of faux-flannel stitched under the ball of the foot. The stitching at the toe is flatlocked so there are no unpleasant lumps or bumps to distract from the purity of your thoughts as you ride.
The Sportives are a mid-length (Orro says 6in) sock, fully compatible with Rule 27 if you're bothered with that sort of thing... At the ankle, the cuff is a good 2cm wide and grippy enough to keep them up, but that width prevents any cutting in. There's another band of elastication around the mid-foot/instep area which ensures the socks' soles can't move about inside your shoe, and gives your foot a pleasant hug.
Some synthetic fabrics have a somewhat austere texture and you wouldn't want socks made from them but these are quite soft; not dissimilar to cotton. They've had a lot of use over this hot, dry summer and have proven comfortable and breathable. They also look good, to my eyes, with Orro's clever logo (the Mark of Orro?) tidily embroidered in gold-coloured thread.
The Sportive Sock comes in small, medium and large, with this large test pair being ideal for my size 11 feet, and should fit up to a 12. The smalls go all the way down to size 2, so a wide range.
Cycling socks get exposed to all the worst that comes up off the road and white socks suffer worst of all, but these have come up looking respectable and, given the quality of construction, should give a good service life. Only the flannelly panel under the toes is showing signs of going bobbly and a bit grey and flecky, but they can't be seen by the public under normal operating conditions.
As well as this white/gold/black colour combination, the Orro Sportives come in a bright blue with pink heel and toes, and a fluorescent yellow and black, both the latter having the logo in black.
MAAP's Emblem socks have a similar classic look, with matching comfort and performance according to our review, but are priced at £18, and Rockay's Ignites are another all-white sock, with a high recycled fibre content, and up to £20 since Anna tested them last year. So at under £10 a pair the Sportives seem terrific value. What's more, at the time of writing this review, I saw Orro knocking out a three-pack for £14.99, so get in there and fill your shoes.
> Buyer’s Guide: 10 of the best summer cycling socks
Overall, they're high quality and comfortable summer socks that stay in place and look good.
Italian made, good looking, great fit and comfort, and under £10 a pair... worth stocking up on!
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Make and model: Orro Sportive Sock
Tell us what the product is for
Says Orro's website: "The ORRO Sportive sock is so thin and supportive it feels like nothing you've ever had on your feet. Made from fibres that wick moisture away and help maintain natural bacterial skin balance. Gentle midfoot and ankle compression areas ensure increased circulation with great arch support. Available in a selection of bright hues, that aid visibility on the road, with a strong and stylish 6-inch cuff."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Made in Italy
Rate the product for quality of construction:
These are well put together in Italy. Not bad for a sock under £10.
Rate the product for performance:
A comfortable summer sock with no bad habits. The all-synthetic build might have proven scratchy or rough but they're soft to wear and stayed cool and comfortable throughout the test period, which included the July heatwave.
Rate the product for durability:
No snags or pulls so far. Only the heel and toe panels are stitched in, the toe flatlocked without any lumpy bits.
Rate the product for fit:
Pretty well perfect for me: the ankle cuff is secure but not tight; they're very tidy down my slender shins and the foot gripper is wide and comfortable.
Rate the product for sizing:
I tested a size large and they were perfect for my size 11 feet. The Large fits up to size 12 and the Small goes down to a petite size 2, so there should be something there for you.
Rate the product for weight:
Unless you're routinely riding in frying heat these are ideal summer-weight socks.
Rate the product for comfort:
Rate the product for value:
Half the price of some! And at the time of writing they were reduced by a pound. You can also buy a three-pack, usually at £29.99 but as I write they're reduced to £14.99. (You can even have a mixed pack.)
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
They've had priority through the wash to try to give them a good thrashing and they've come up fine. White socks are not the easiest things to live with but they do look good. The only place where they're showing the grime is under the ball of the foot, where the sewn-in panel of fake flannel has gone a bit bobbly and trapped small bits and pieces.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
They're called Sportive socks and they've proven ideal for all-day rides out in the spring and summer. My feet have felt dry and comfortable in them, the gentle compression around the instep keeps them from moving about, and the wide, elastane-powered ankle grip keeps them in place without biting in. There's a little padding under the toe/ball of the foot area that may or may not have assisted in comfort – I sometimes get a hot-spot in the middle of the ball of the right foot and these socks were pretty good at preventing that from flaring up.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Very good fit and sizing, good looks, cool and comfortable in use. Made in Italy but still inexpensive.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The flannel-like pad under the ball of the foot has gone bobbly and a bit grey-looking but that hasn't impacted the performance.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
MAAP's Emblem socks have a similar, classic look with matching comfort and performance but are priced at £18, and Rockay's Ignites are another all-white sock, with a high recycled fibre content, and £20.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Definitely
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
A classic white sock is a staple of any cyclist's wardrobe and these are really good value with great looks, comfort and fit. They're sized to fit a wide range of riders and can be had in yellow or blue too. At under £10 a pair for Italian-made socks, there's very little to complain about.
Age: 57 Height: 6'2 Weight: 75kg and rising
I usually ride: Cannondale CAAD10 My best bike is: Tomassini Prestige
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: touring, sportives, general fitness riding, mtb,
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