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The Velocio Winter Wool Socks keep you warmer than you'd think given their lack of bulk, and they deal with damp and cold winds well. The whole upper section is tight enough to make getting them on quite hard work, however, and if you're size UK10 or over you may find them just too small and constricting. Check out our guide to the best cycling socks for more options.
Traditionally you have two choices for winter: get a turbo trainer and take the long, straight road to Sweatsville-Upon-Tedium, or man/woman/other up and go outside. But hello 2024! Now there's a third option: add these socks to your kit and you'll burn 1,000 calories just trying to get them on. You won't have to ride at all.
I tested the largest of the three sizes (L/XL) and found the foot section fitted my UK9.5 plates pretty perfectly, but that's not ideal if you're size 10 or up.
Meanwhile, the strongly elastic upper section was hard to get over even my average feet, and pretty tight on my also average calves. They weren't tight enough to cause discomfort and they're certainly not going to slide down as you ride, but again, anyone with big or wide feet and/or chunky legs is likely to come over all sad face at the almost Darwinian level of struggle involved.
The ingredients say they're 6% elastodiene and just 1% elastane, and I'm here to tell you that 7% elasto-anything just isn't enough. Why didn't Velocio use more elasto? I guess it just couldn't stretch to it...
Even I would size up if I could, but there's nowhere to go. Reasonable length in the sole aside, these feel more like S/M socks than L/XL.
Still, if small sizing is not an issue, these are very comfy. They're not so thick they'll make your shoes a blood-restricting squeeze, yet they still manage to provide some impressive warmth. The 58% 'utlrafine' merino wool may have something to do with that, along with how well they stay warm even in spray and wind. I've used these in some truly ghastly weather and ended up forgetting about them entirely – that being, of course, the best result from most riding kit.
The extra thickness along the sole and over your toes means they're comfortable in stiff shoes on rough roads, and the upper surfaces breathe well and won't ruck up under your laces/Boa dials/Velcro straps.
I've even left them on for hours after a ride, mostly because getting them off is harder than press-ups, and they prove comfortable for extended general wear too. In case you're thinking all this constriction is because they're supposed to be compressive, Velocio makes no such claims. They're just tight.
While £23 is a lot for a pair of socks, it's not unusual for merino ones. The Universal Colours Spectrum Tie-Dye Merino Socks that I reviewed last winter are £25, for instance; the design won't be for everyone, though they won't make you feel tired while getting dressed.
And MAAP's Alt_Road Merino Socks are more expensive still at £28, but they do have a useful amount of extra elasto-stuff in them.
Both are particularly 'designer' brands, of course, but then This is Cambridge is hardly mainstream and its Fluro Wave Merino Socks are 'only' £19.50... And while the Howies Gary Merino Wool Socks are only ankle high and £25, you get two pairs for that money.
Clearly you're paying a premium for a premium name here, so if the Velocio brand appeals – and you've got exquisitely childlike feet – they'll offer reasonable value.
So there it is – everything you ever wanted to know about socks, but were afraid to ask. These are warm, comfortable, small and expensive.
Warm but not bulky, and very comfy, but the sizing needs looking at
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Velocio Winter Wool Socks
Size tested: L/XL
Tell us what the product is for
If you need me to tell you what socks are for, let me be the first to welcome you to our planet.
"Updated for added warmth without bulk, the Winter Wool adds terry loop padding to the footbed and up over the toes for ultra-fine merino comfort against the elements."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Ultrafine Merino is incredibly soft, moisture wicking and thermo-regulating
Fully padded footbed and toe for added warmth
Flat knit instep and cuff to reduce bulk and improve fit in a cycling shoe
Ribbed arch band keeps sock in place
8 cuff with 1/2cm welt for added coverage with tights or leg warmers
58% Merino Wool, 35% Nylon, 6% Elastodiene, 1% Elastane
They're tight; really they need a fourth size (XXL-'kin L).
On the tight side.
Good once you've struggled them on, but if you have big feet or calves, throw half those points in the bin; these will be tight.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Comfortable and surprisingly warm, but the lack of stretch/width in the cuff makes them a real struggle to get on – and though these were just right for me once on, this is the largest size (L-XL) and my feet are only UK 9.5.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Surprisingly warm for their thickness, and a nice soft feel.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
I found them a real struggle to put on; the whole upper section feels like it's from a smaller size, and the footbed isn't massively long for anyone size UK10+.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
It's high for socks in general, though matches many other merino socks from designer brands.
Did you enjoy using the product? Sort of.
Would you consider buying the product? Maybe
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Maybe
Use this box to explain your overall score
Small sizing and restrictive lack of stretch aside, these work really well. They're warm, comfortable and usefully slim. They could be cheaper, but they're not alone at this price.
About the tester
I usually ride: Vitus Zenium SL VR Disc My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: general fitness riding, mtb,