2XU Compression Recovery Sock

Manufacturer Description

Extremely powerful + durable compression garments engineered to optimize circulation + heighten oxygen delivery. With graduated engineering + rigid knit construction, Refresh Compression garments are ideal for athletes with high performance demands.

Features

  • Using PWX POWER with nylon elastomeric yarns for enhanced compression.
  • Highest power denier offers extra calf + shin support.
  • Reduced muscle fatigue + damage in lower legs.
  • Graduated fit to promote increased circulation.
  • Linked toe cage for extra comfort.
  • DVT protection.
  • Also suitable for everyday use.
  • Measured size medium
    • Weight – 32 g (1.1 oz)
  • Retail – $49

YMMV Review

2XU is a company out of Australia that makes compression clothing. They began in 2005 and over the last couple years they have broadened their line to other sports related pieces, but compression is really their main focus. I initially had my first interaction with 2XU through triathlons. 2XU is a major player in the triathlon community, and their clothing is all over most events I have been at. Last fall I contacted 2XU to set up a review of a couple of items, the first being the Recovery Compression Socks.

Testing

To test these socks, I wore them on long drives, at work on days after tough runs, after hard workouts, and even to bed a couple of times. Since these are recovery socks, I used them when I needed to recover from a hard effort.

Design ★★★★☆

Appearance (20%) ★★★☆☆

Construction (40%) ★★★★★

Materials (30%) ★★★★☆

Sustainability (10%) ☆☆☆☆☆

Recently, 2XU has changed up their compression categories. They have three new specialized categories: Perform, XForm, and Refresh. These categories are separated out by the three new fabrics each category is made of. The 2XU Recovery Compression Socks are part of the Refresh Collection. This collection is built for everyday use and recovery after hard workouts. The Refresh Collection uses 2XU’s new PWX Power fabric. This fabric features high gauge nylon elastomer yarns and superior medical grade circular knit structure to allow 360 degree stretch, greater flexibility, unsurpassed power and durability. The circular-knit construction creates evenly distributed compression, which is unachievable in garments with a traditional tricot knit. Compared to the other fabrics in the collection, PWX Power fabric rates higher in power and weight but has less flex to it. One of the advantages of 2XU is their use of high denier compression fabric. This refers to the thickness of the yarn. These socks use a 70 denier fabric that will last longer than competitor’s fabrics. The thicker fabric retains its characteristics longer than thinner competitors. To further extend the life of their products 2XU uses Invista Lycra Sport. This is crucial in achieving a high level of elasticity and maintaining compressive properties over the life of the garment. Lycra Sport enhances durability enhances durability and maintains its stretch and recovery characteristics longer than competitors.

If you are not familiar with compression wear, there are some real benefits to wearing it during and after workouts. Compression improves circulation by helping the wearer warm up faster. Graduated compression of the limbs actively encourages and increases venous return to the heart and lymph nodes. Compression also helps improve recovery. Therapeutic rated fabric provides greater pressure and recovery benefit by helping return blood back to the heart. This helps remove blood lactate from exercising muscles leading to faster muscle repair. Compression also helps reduce fatigue while working out. During exercise, muscles are subject to forces that cause vibration. This vibration is a major cause of muscle fatigue, known as muscle oscillation, can be reduced when wearing compression garments. This leads to improved muscle endurance, strength, and power. Compression wear heightens proprioception senses and awareness leading to better body positioning, balance control, and muscle coordination. Finally, compression compressionFinally, compressionreduces the damage done to muscles. By wearing compression you can reduce the amount of damage done during exercise and reduce post exercise swelling. It also reduces the amount of Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS).

I did give these socks a zero for sustainability. I looked around the 2XU website and was not able to find anything on sustainability. Furthermore, none of the materials used in these socks are from sustainable sources. While this may be due to not finding a sustainable product that lives up to 2XU’s high standards, it would be great that they acknowledged that. Since I cannot find any evidence I gave it the zero rating.

Fit ★★★½☆

Comfort Next to Skin (40%) ★★★☆☆

Foot Length (15%) ★★★½☆

Foot Volume (15%) ★★★½☆

Leg Sizing (30%) ★★★★☆

I tested a size medium in the Recovery Compression Socks. The socks are sized based on the size of your foot.

the Socks Hit Me Just Below the Knee

I happen to be right in the middle of a size medium, but it is important to note that there are some overlap on the high and low end of the scales for each size so size accordingly. The socks are comfortable against the skin but do not seem as soft as the XForm fabric is. This may be due to the nylon yarns in the fabric or just the thicker fabric. I do also notice that the socks are slightly more slippery next to the skin than the XForm fabric is. This might not be the best word to use to describe this feeling, but I have not been able to think of anything better. Their foot area of the sock is not made for compression. Studies have shown that compression does not need to go below the ankle to be effective so 2XU stops the compression there. This makes the foot area very comfortable and able to be worn for all day use. The sizing up through the calves is a graduated fit. 2XU makes sure that as you progress up the leg the amount of compression drops at an equal rate. They are not able to give exact numbers in pressure generated because everyone’s legs are different. To combat this the compression is adjusted as a percentage as you move up. For me these socks come up to just below the knee.

Performance ★★★½☆

Breathability (20%) ★★½☆☆

Cushioning (10%) ★★½☆☆

Moisture Transport (10%) ★★★☆☆

Recovery (50%) ★★★★☆

Warmth (10%) ★★½☆☆

I have had good luck with the 2XU Recovery Compression Socks. Using them as a recovery sock on days after a hard workout, I have felt a little fresher for my next workout. Recovery is a tough thing to quantify so you will have to just go with my feelings. After some of my long runs, I have tried to wear these to bed but inevitably have taken them off sometime during the night. It is nothing about the socks rather than me just getting too hot, and I do not always sleep well, especially after my long runs.

The socks are not cushioned as they are for recovery. Breathability and warmth were what I expected, they are not very thick and move moisture well. The socks definitely wrap your leg well and feel like they are compressive but not overly so. In the past, I have not had any issues with swelling or blood pooling so it is hard for me to comment on their effectiveness of preventing those conditions. I do know 2XU has worked with the Australian Institute of Sport, who is the premier training Institute. With their alliances, they have done research on the effects of compression. 2XU has also worked with the Victorian Institute of Sport and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology.

Overall ★★★★☆

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Overall, the 2XU Recovery Compression Socks are my favorite socks I have tested for pure recovery. They feel a bit thicker than some of the other 2XU fabrics I have tested, but they still breathe well and move moisture when necessary.  With this extra thickness, they seem to have more compression and feel very durable. With compression clothing, there is only so many times the garment can stretch and recover before it wears out. When you are paying this much for a pair of socks it is good to know they used a durable and long lasting fabric. That is one of the best things about 2XU gear, they do not skimp on the material they use. All their products are well made with top quality materials and proven by their research and athletes. If you want to give a recovery sock a try, these are a good option. They perform well, are long lasting, and have subdued look. The 2XU Recovery Compression socks retail for $50. As always, your mileage may vary.

Pros

  • Durable materials
  • Circular knit means even compression
  • I feel better after hard workouts when wearing these

Cons

  • Feels slipperier on the foot than others

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About the author

I am an avid runner, cyclist, swimmer, hiker, climber, skier and many other activities that would make this list too long. I started Your Mileage May Vary Reviews in Early 2011 to combine two of my passions: sports and gear.

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