To choose the best tube socks, your main purpose in buying them should be kept in mind. For example, if your main purpose is to have something in fun colors to wear casually on your feet in the house, then there are many striped patterns and colorful designs from which to choose. If you need athletic socks though, don't look for color first but rather for a fitted heel. Packages of bulk white cotton tube socks, either plain or with colored stripe accents at the top, can often be purchased inexpensively, but be sure to look for quality.
Poor quality is often evidenced by overly bulky toe seams and threads hanging inside the socks. Since you won't be able to notice these problems when buying packaged socks, it's best to first purchase a single pair of that brand, if possible. Diabetics or others with numbness in the feet due to nerve damage should be especially cautious when choosing cheaper socks, as they may not feel any loose threads wrapping too tightly around their toes that may cause further foot injury. The top edge of a tube sock should expand easily or it may cut off circulation in the leg if the fit is too tight.
A tube sock design with a fitted heel is best to wear in walking or running shoes. Otherwise, tube socks may bunch up uncomfortably or slip around on the feet. Cotton is a good choice for athletic tube socks, as it can absorb sweat well. The stitching on both the heel and toe area should be firm with no loose threads or too much extra bulk. While thick cotton tube socks can be comfortable to wear, this comfort can be ruined if the toe section is too bulky and doesn't fit well inside shoes.
Tube socks made of mainly cotton, but with some polyester added, can be the best choice if you need a lot of stretch. This type tends to be easier to pull on the feet, so it can be an ideal solution if you have difficulty managing regular cotton socks. An advantage of buying tube socks all in one color, such as white, is that they will always work as pairs even if some become lost.
Colored socks have the advantage of being available not only in a wide array of colors, but also many different fun patterns. Choosing striped, dotted or whimsically patterned tube socks can be a great way to add color as well as show your personality when you wear casual outfits. Many department stores feature these kinds of socks on sale regularly. Depending on whether you shop online or in-person, you may get a lot of value by shopping for casual tube sock styles during sales.