Heat Holders® Original socks versus merino socks? We’ve got you covered.

There are warm socks, and then there are Heat Holders® socks, the warmest thermal socks available. Heat Holders® socks, crafted for warmth and comfort, are the best thermal socks for warming cold feet all year round, which may surprise you. Our team compared Heat Holders® to the standard merino wool sock to help you decide which socks are the best warm socks for you and the results here might surprise you, too.

What are Heat Holders® socks?

Heat Holders® socks are socks made from special Japanese yarns and manufactured in a three-stage process that includes looping and brushing the fabric—resulting in the warmest thermal socks available. Heat Holders® are renowned for their warmth, comfort, and moisture-wicking properties that keep your feet dry and comfortable all day long.

What are merino wool socks?

Merino wool socks are made from the wool of the merino sheep that originated in Spain but are mostly found in New Zealand and Australia. Thin, warm, and very soft, merino wool socks are known for their wearability and for keeping your feet dry and odor-free.

Feature for feature


Heat Holders® ORIGINAL™ socks are independently laboratory-tested to be 39% warmer than the closest merino wool sock (made with 80% wool). Heat Holders® special manufacturing process is designed to trap warm air close to your body, keeping you warmer longer—making Heat Holders® the best choice in socks for almost any cold weather profession (like a crossing guard, construction worker, mason, or photographer) that keeps you out in frigid temperatures all day. 

Year-round comfort

Heat Holders® socks come in three consistent levels of warmth, making them the choice for cold feet every day. Merino socks have one thickness and varying warmth levels depending on the blend. Heat Holders® socks act like a thermostat for your feet, allowing you to choose the best thickness and warmth for the environment. Going to root for your child at an all-day hockey event? Choose Heat Holders® ORIGINAL™ socks. Going on a fall hike for a few hours? Heat Holders® LITE™ socks will keep you warm for the whole outing. Need a warm pair of socks for a chilly office? Heat Holders® ULTRALITE™ socks are warm and thin, designed to be comfortable in a more formal environment.


Heat Holders® socks are made from acrylic yarns, making them a cruelty-free choice in socks. 


Merino wool socks, mixed with acrylic blends, are durable, though the more durable they are, the lower the percentage of merino wool is woven into the sock. Heat Holders WORXX® socks have reinforced heels and toes for sock wearers who require high durability. 


If you’re looking for the warmest thermal sock to wear this winter, Heat Holders® socks offer the warmest choice over merino wool socks, and they’re also oh-so-soft and comfortable. They are similarly priced to a good merino sock and superior in warmth. However, if you’re set on a pair of wool running socks, Heat Holders offers a merino wool version of their LITE™ socks, which incorporates the benefits of our special manufacturing process along with the benefits of merino wool. Take a look at the whole Heat Holders® collection of socks to find the best thermal socks for you this winter.

1 comment

Marcia MarciaMarcia

Marcia MarciaMarcia

Do you make socks for babies?

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