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How To Wear Compression Socks: Easy Guide (with Pictures!)

Best way to wear compression socks with easy steps you can start with right away! Enhance blood circulation to the legs and other parts of the body with compression socks.  Relieve symptoms of varicose veins, deep vein thrombosis, and skin ulcers with the right use of compression socks. Discuss with your doctor about the ideal compression socks for your specific need based on the perfect compression level for you.

pictures of a man wearing compression socks

However, there is a need for caution while wearing or taking off compression socks, and ensure you follow instructions regarding wearing compression socks.

Below, you will read on compression socks, choose the right compression socks, and care for compression socks.

Who should wear compression socks?

picture of a pregnant woman wearing compression stocking

A lot of individuals have attested to the growing importance of making use of Medical compression socks, ranging from athletes concerned with the recovery of their muscles to aging people with poor circulation. Compression socks are suitable for people who utilize a huge chunk of their time sitting or standing to tackle the consequences of living a sedentary life. Compression socks are also good for individuals who suffer venous insufficiencies; this is to reduce the pace of symptoms spreading in the body. Wearing compression socks is advisable for the health of pregnant women; this is to combat the constant swelling and reduce the pressure on the veins of pregnant women. 

Choosing the Right Compression Socks to wear

various compression socks color

Ask your doctor which compression level is right for you

Not just a clothing accessory or a regular stocking, a compression sock is not chosen solely by design. It is a real medical device that can cope with certain pathologies in the feet, which a lot of people suffer. Different settings should be taken into consideration when planning to purchase compression socks to avoid a bad deal.

Whether it is to improve blood circulation or to relieve heavy legs, it is important to choose a model adapted to your needs.  

Compression class

Checking the class of compression before opting for a given model leads you to answer the question: how to buy a compression sock of a better quality-price ratio? This parameter lets you know if the model for which you will invest your money can offer the compression you are looking for.

Class Compression Pressure mmHg
1 mild 18 – 21
2 moderate 23 – 32
3 strong 34 – 46
4 extra strong At least 49

The compression class indicates the pressure exerted on your leg by this accessory. We can distinguish four main classes, 1, 2, 3, and 4. For the first class, you have models that offer a weak compression located between 10 and 15 mmHg. They are suitable for users who wish to improve the way their blood circulates. This is valid for people in pregnancy, those who travel often or people who have to work in a standing position for a long time. The next class includes socks at medium pressure between 15 and 20 mmHg.

These are compatible with individuals who are recovering from surgery, with people who have varicose veins, edema, or venous thrombosis. For Class 3, models in this category offer strong compression between 20 and 36 mmHg for those with varicose veins, venous thrombosis, or severe swelling.

Finally, class 4 compression socks rated 30-40 mmHg belong to the group of extra firm socks. 

Measure your ankle

measuring of ankle

The first step needed in choosing the right compression socks is by knowing the circumference of your ankle. How do you measure your ankle? You place tape around the narrowest part of the ankle. With that, record what you have measured. It is important to note that the ankle bone should be below the tape. 

Measure the widest part of your calf

After getting the measurement of your ankle, the next step is to determine your calf’s circumference. You can get this by placing a measuring tape around the widest part of your calf. 

Measure the length of your calf

measuring the widest part of calf

After measuring the widest part of your calf, the next step is to measure your calf’s length from the bottom of your heel up to the bend in your knee. You can get the measurement of your length by sitting on a chair and positioning your leg at a 90-degree angle. 

Measure the widest part of your thigh and leg length

picture of person measuring tighs

This measurement is particularly ideal for individuals whose doctors have prescribed high compression socks. By measuring the distance between the bottom of your buttocks and the floor, you will determine the length appropriate for your compression socks. 

Compare your measurements to the manufacturer’s sizing chart

When you are done with measuring your calf, tight, and leg length, the next step is to determine whether your measurements fit well into the measurement charts of the compression socks producer. 

Measure again if you lose or gain weight

An important factor to consider before purchasing a compression stocking is to reconfirm your size whenever you notice an increase or loss of weight.

Wearing and Taking Off Compression Stockings

picture of person wearing compression socks

Wearing compression socks

To properly put on your socks, we present a simple method on how to wear your compression socks for good health and to make your day pleasant.

  • First, slide your hand down to grab the heel with your thumb and forefinger (without a ring).
  • Then, fold it down to the heel height to put on the tip of your foot.
  • Make sure the tip of the foot and the heel are in place.
  • Grasp the bottom with both hands, then unroll it gradually along your leg without pulling the band.
  • Position the band and massage the product to distribute the compression and pull on the tip of the foot to release the toes.

Taking off compression socks

To properly remove your compression stockings, we present a simple method to make your daily life easier.

  • First, grab the bottom by the band or ribbing (for socks) and flip it up to the heel.
  • Then place your thumbs under the heel and push down to half of your foot.
  • Finally, take the bottom end and shoot.

Wearing and Caring for Compression Stockings 

Compression socks cure many ailments. Thanks to them, one easily gets rid of cramps and varicose veins. If you want to enjoy the benefits of this accessory, but you do not know how to use it, read these few lines.

Replace compression stockings in sports with models for varicose veins

It is often tempting to use these socks for varicose veins during sports to treat or prevent cramps. It is important to note that there are different specific models by the level of pressure on each part of the leg. If you follow cryotherapy, for example, you need sports specimens. They exert low to strong pressure from ankle to calf.

Traveling with compression socks

Compression stockings help prevent phlebitis and swelling, especially when you’re flying. In this case, avoid serious or mild problems that could be escalated such as arthritis.

Also, consider your health status and age, as this method is particularly recommended for the elderly or those suffering from diabetes or hypertension. So, always seek the advice of your doctor before making decisions. In order to support the work of the socks, drink regular water. Do not sit during the whole flight, stretch.

Wear the socks correctly

Sit down, then stretch your leg. Flip the sock without going to the end. This will allow you to put them more easily on the tip of the foot, and unwind gently as when donning stockings pantyhose until the end.  

Relieve yourself after hard work

If you’re wondering when to wear socks, put them on early in the morning or in the evening. They are effective if you have spent all day standing or sitting. If you walked miles or ran a marathon. You will see that these accessories cool down from the few minutes you put them on. Before handling them, remove your jewelry from your hands.

Wear the compression socks in competition

To be more efficient, each time you finish a race, and before starting another, put on compression socks. These also prevent cramps and other muscular pains on the ground or the track. Moreover, they are not only made for runners, footballers, and other fans of collective or individual sport find their option.

Give yourself a moment of relaxation

After training hard, lie on a couch or bed by putting your feet on pillows, cushions, or folded blankets. Do not elevate them too much. Relax for about ten minutes. After this period of relaxation, take a hot shower, and then pour cold water on your feet. Dry them and put on your compression stockings. You can remove them after about two hours.

Handwash new stockings before wearing them

One thing a lot of people do when wearing compression socks is that they put it on immediately after purchase. However, it is ideal that one hand wash the socks before wearing them. This is done in order to make it easier to wear compression socks.  

Replace compression socks every 3-6 months

In order to ensure that your compression socks are still carrying out their designated functions, you should change them every three to six months. The continued usage of compression socks after six months is not advisable as the socks wear off with continuous use.

Take Proper care of your compression stockings

The final step in the usage of compression socks is how you treat them to make the socks durable. When given adequate care, compression socks can last beyond the average of three months. You should have more than a pair since you will be wearing them daily. 

When it is the time that sleep, remove your compression sock, wash them, and dry the socks. Avoid putting on damped compression socks at any point in time. 


Compression socks come in a variety of shapes, colors, and sizes. Some compression socks reach the thigh, while others extend to the ankle and shin, simply choose your preference.

From this guide, it is safe to say wearing compression socks have many health advantages. They are ideal for people who spend all day standing and perfect for athletes who want to improve their performance.