My feet are cold
June 5, 2021 7:30 PM   Subscribe

Are grippy socks what I want? Indoor winter foot wear question.

We are a shoes off house. It's winter here, and my feet are cold. Socks by themselves have turned out to be not a great solution because we have wooden floors in parts of the house, and my feet get sore when they slip a bit- barefoot is fine, shod is fine. Slippers aren't amazing either, because they aren't supportive and force your feet to do weird things to keep them on.

So, would grippy socks solve my problem? Fitted slippers?

Surely after lots of work from home and lockdown people have good home footwear suggestions.

Complicating factors- I'm a mum with a toddler and so less fuss for shoes on the better.
posted by freethefeet to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (26 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
We are also a shoes off household and I have a pair of Haflinger felted wool slippers. (I checked to see if they’re available in Australia and they are.) The ones I have are a similar style to the ones I linked.

They’re warm, supportive (I have funny feet that require good support) and stay on. They’re also excellent quality and have lasted several years already—and will last many more, I’m sure.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 7:42 PM on June 5, 2021 [4 favorites]

Nooooooo grips, not if your house isn't pristine. But what you do want are the kind of socks they generally put grips on, which are usually called fuzzy or chenille socks. They're all I wear; I keep them in a basket under my desk.
posted by Lyn Never at 7:44 PM on June 5, 2021

We use glerups at home and love 'em.
posted by whatevernot at 7:45 PM on June 5, 2021 [4 favorites]

I have a pair of indoor-only Birkenstocks for this purpose (in summer), and am about to buy some (indoo-only) Ugg boots for winter.
posted by third word on a random page at 8:06 PM on June 5, 2021 [1 favorite]

I get along fine with grippy socks in my very non-pristine house. Gripjoys are the ones I favor.
posted by humbug at 8:08 PM on June 5, 2021

We're also a no-shoe household, that often has dust and pet furballs floating around. Unexpected no-carpet hazards.

I am pretty much always bare or sock foot. Slippers and me just don't get along. They're too much work, for some reason.

You can make any socks you like into grippy socks with puff paint. I prefer fuzzy socks, both with and without grip. There's also lots of boot style warm socks around during certain seasons.
posted by stormyteal at 8:22 PM on June 5, 2021

Seconding Glerups!
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 8:25 PM on June 5, 2021

I've been wearing Uggs (or something similar, the shearling is the key) as slippers for years. They're the only things that keep my blood-deprived feet warm. It was 25 C/77 F when I came in from the yard, and I've got them on now. Uggs.
posted by kate4914 at 8:38 PM on June 5, 2021 [1 favorite]

I find that slippers like this are close to wearing socks or going barefoot. They just cover my feet to keep them warm. And the suede bottom of the slipper provides enough grip.
posted by hydra77 at 8:44 PM on June 5, 2021

I am a shoes off in the house gal and I wear Glerups or socks with Birkenstock EVA Arizonas. (Light as a feather and feels like hybrid between foam/rubber. They’re comfy as hell.
posted by nathaole at 8:45 PM on June 5, 2021 [2 favorites]

I like slipper boots. They aren’t supportive but you don’t have to do anything to keep them on, and they’re like inflated versions of grippy socks without picking up muck.
posted by plonkee at 1:18 AM on June 6, 2021

There's a thing worn around the house in New England winters, often called mukluks, or muk luks. (misusing the term a bit - proper mukluks are the sealskin & fur boots worn by Arctic Aboriginal peoples.)

The ones I mean are calf high socks, knitted of heavy rough wool in fancy patterns, with a foot shaped piece of suede stitched to the bottom. (Etsy store example)

Not sure if giant wool socks with suede bottoms (soccasins?) would have enough grip for you, depending on how smooth your floors are.
But it's something to shop for, or could be a knitting craft project if that's your thing.
Warm and low maintenance, anyway.

If you are OK with semi-disposable, I have been pleased with wearing grip-soled 'hospital socks' (designed to prevent slip & fall in hospitals and nursing homes) over a pair of regular cotton sports socks for their warmth underneath.

The grippy bits will pick up all the floor grit and pet hair, etc. while the gym socks underneath stay clean. When the outer hospital socks get too gross (splashed with baby vomit), wash or throw away, as desired.

Then again, shearling fleece lined Ugg Boots (or cheaper imitations) got really popular in the US as 'oh, I can just clomp around in these all day and never get cold' shoes.
Get a pair of apple bottom jeans to go with, and do your new theme dance around the house.
posted by bartleby at 2:10 AM on June 6, 2021

You can be an outside shoes off house. Moving around a lot inside, especially if you end up carrying around heavy things like other people, you might still want the benefit of a shoe -- you just don't want the dirt of outside with that.

I've used a supportive pair of outside shoes, cleaned up, with the laces super loose so I can slip my feet in easily; leather loafers, also slip-on; Teva-like water sandals that velcro on and are very secure on the feet; canvas tennis shoes -- basically whatever worked -- and just designated them for inside only. And then I put a duplicate pair of arch supports in them.
posted by amtho at 4:29 AM on June 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

Best answer: You do not need $95 felted wool house slippers if you don't want to or cannot buy them. No-slip socks are indeed the perfect low barrier solution to this problem. They are easy to find and can also go by yoga socks or ballet socks.
posted by DarlingBri at 4:53 AM on June 6, 2021

I wear felted wool clogs indoors in the fall/winter/spring. I think they’re more practical than grippy socks because you only need one pair, you don’t have to wash them, they’re more supportive than slippers but cozier than shoes, and they slip on and off easily. Also you can add wool socks for cold days. They’re kind of expensive, so I get that may be a negative, but the good ones last and last and last. Mine are Stegmann but there are lots of options.
posted by chocotaco at 5:42 AM on June 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

I wear flannel-lined mocs by L.B. Evans/Hideaways. They may be more of a shoe than your house rule allows. I have Reynaud's, and have to keep my feet warm. It helps that I can slip off the mocs and get my feet off the floor.

It seems the term mukluk, as described by bartleby, has superceded slipper sock which we used back in the day. My experience was that they were very cozy when first put on but the warming effect waned as the sock absorbed moisture from the foot. To some extent, this is a problem with any sock-based solution and, ironically, is worse with thicker and warmer socks. I dont see socks advertised as breathable, but that's what's wanted. Maybe socks meant for hiking would be best in that regard.
posted by SemiSalt at 6:14 AM on June 6, 2021

I can't abide slippers for the reasons you've described. I do however love my Birkenstock Amsterdams, which are supportive, and don't require foot athletics when walking in them. They're especially excellent if you're losing a lot of heat through the floors themselves (as opposed to getting cold toes through poor circulation), which they prevent more successfully than any slipper sock I've tried. No more 'ew, cold floor' feeling either, or achy heels when standing cooking. Combine with your favourite socks, or not.
posted by FifteenShocks at 8:06 AM on June 6, 2021

A pair of house shoes that you slip on and off is what you want, the line between them and some of the more supportive slipper designs is kind of blurry. I usually wear a clog design in winter as you can slip them on and off without bending over when changing into your outdoor shoes. We are common as muck so wear crocs or fleece lined crocs but there are a world of much cuter options out there if that's your preference. I like crocs because the material they are made of doesn't mark the floors.

But sock wise my partner is a big fan of something like these which kind of blur the sock/slipper line.
posted by wwax at 8:45 AM on June 6, 2021

I asked a somewhat similar question a few months ago and after trying some things ended up just going with buying a bunch of merino wool socks to wear with slippers that I made by cutting the ankle strap off of an old/worn out pair of Teva sandals. I like this because if I want to lie on the couch or in bed with my feet up I can take the slippers off and my feet are still warm and also the socks don’t have accumulated dust from the floor on them.
posted by needs more cowbell at 8:56 AM on June 6, 2021

Mr. gudrun has been working from home since Covid, in the coldest room in the place by far. He was getting really cold this past winter and experimented with different combinations of clothing and footwear to try to stay warm in that room for an 8 hour work day. For his feet, Glerups were the final (if somewhat pricey) answer, after trying a bunch of different things.
posted by gudrun at 9:45 AM on June 6, 2021

I'm a shoes off household and I just have a pair of indoor crocs that I never take outside which are grippy enough for me and I can wear thick socks under them and I am good.
posted by jessamyn at 10:41 AM on June 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

I currently don't like wearing bottoms in my (otherwise quite temperate) home and have gone with slipper-socks from the muk luks company (based in Milwaukee, it seems) because I liked the pom poms. They also offer some traction on slippery laminate floors.
posted by batter_my_heart at 10:47 AM on June 6, 2021

Indoor-only shoes might be your solution. I live in a shoes-off household in a very cold climate and I wear AllBirds wool runners (I don't know if they ship to your country, but you might be able to find something similar) and they are warm and grippy but not actually slippers.
posted by epanalepsis at 11:16 AM on June 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

I used to be a socks-in-the-house guy, but now I wear an indoor-only pair of Adidas flip-flops. The insulation between the floor and my foot keeps my foot warmer, and the padding helps with plantar fasciitis. I can put them on and take them off without bending over or using my hands, and I don't have to hold my feet in a funny way to stop them from falling off.
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 2:11 PM on June 6, 2021

When I worked in a shoes off school in Korea, I wore a pair of fuzzy lined crocs that I kept there for just that.
posted by kathrynm at 2:58 PM on June 6, 2021

Response by poster: Update! I was purchasing regular socks, and noticed grippy "athletic" (gymnastic?) socks and purchased them on a whim. Worn over regular socks, they are just perfect! I can carry the kiddo on wooden floors without weird muscle adjusting. I can even slip into my gardening boots (though not regular shoes) while wearing them. They aren't floppy like slippers and are still cosy and warm.

Very happy, thanks for all the advice. May your toes be as cosy and as warm as mine.
posted by freethefeet at 3:52 AM on August 15, 2021 [1 favorite]

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