Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Product Review: CEP Compression Sportsocks

Go ahead and page the geriatric unit right now, I'll wait.

While my mind has been focused on recovery lately, I thought it would be appropriate to review one of the latest (and arguably greatest) things I've stumbled upon that's been making my life feel a little more complete: the CEP Compression Sportsock.
CEP Compression Sportsocks are supposedly proven to help speed up and promote recovery in athletes -- and while I was never very good at science and will never claim to know much about scientific theory, it sounds nice. Apparently when these socks are worn during and after activity, it increases blood flow and provides more oxygen to the musculater blah blah blah I don't know what any of their big words mean. But I do know that these socks feel fantastic!

  • These socks truly are anatomically correct. I have an issue putting left socks on my right foot and visa versa -- even anatomically correct socks -- without noticing the difference. But these socks truly feel weird on the wrong feet. I don't know why this makes me so happy, but I imagine it wouldn't make me happy to wear the wrong sock on the wrong foot, just like I wouldn't be happy wearing the wrong shoe on the wrong foot.

  • They are so freaking comfortable, and I'm going to openly admit that without any ambiguity. I usually put them on after a long run, and it gives my calves a lot of relief from the workout I just put them through. This makes some sense: Imagine you pound your finger or stub a toe; this first thing you do, if you don't put it in your mouth (gross), is apply pressure. Applying pressure to your entire lower leg after a hard workout is a lot easier than fitting it in your mouth.
  • These socks are incredibly well-made. I think the heels and toes are about 5 times reinforced and I have no concerns about them wearing thin or getting holes anytime soon. Despite being worn repeatedly, they stay precisely fit to my feet and calves.

  • These really don't get uncomfortable when worn for long periods of time (which I actually haven't figured out if that's a good or bad thing to do yet). Sometimes when I'm feeling wild and daring, I like to wear them to sleep. Please laugh. And then go try for yourself. When you wake up and your calves feel like a million bucks, it'll be a great start to your day as well.
  • They come in pink!
  • I wore these out for a recovery run a few weeks ago and noticed that they got a little too hot. Depending on the season and where you live, I'm not sure these are the best early-summer sock. They aren't very breathable, and I noticed my calves started feeling warm to the touch. Perhaps these invisible flames were actually my enhanced performance? Doubtful. 

  • They tend to run a bit small, and I don't think that's the compression element. Even after measuring my calves for accurate sizing, they were mildly uncomfortable the first two or three times I had them on. I think they took nearly 5 minutes to put on the first time I tried them. Figuring they were, hello, compression socks, my best guess was that a tight fit was natural. However, now that they are broken in, they are more comfortable to wear and much easier to put on. They clearly are still tight, but not uncomfortably tight. 
  • They tend to run a bit tall. I'm not exactly what you would call a tall person (5'4", if you're curious), and the elastic at the very top of the sock actually goes onto my knee if I pull them all the way up. I try to leave a little slack, but then they sit in a weird spot in my kneepit. I have noticed, especially when wearing these for more than a few hours, that that elastic in my kneepit can get a little itchy and minorly irritating. Then I just yank my granny socks down a little (they truly don't budge when they are on!) and we're good again.
My short little legs in too-tall socks. This is how they fit when I pull them on loosely. If I were to pull them all the way up while stretching them on, they'd cover half my knee.

Overall, these socks have a pretty hefty price tag for being *cough* A SOCK, but I believe the cost is worth it. I can't put a price on comfort or feel-goodness (and supposed faster recovery?!), but I can maybe try to put a price tag on a beautiful (yup, I said it) compression sock that doesn't stretch, fray, or pill.


  1. OMG, this is exactly what I wanted to know about these socks!!! Seriously, Average Twin, it's like you read my mind. I've been looking at compression socks in general, and CEPs specifically, but my biggest concern is being too warm in long socks during a run (I already know they're going to feel awesome afterward). Now I know. Thanks!

  2. These have been on my wish list for a while now, but I haven't been able to bring myself to pay that kind of money for (like you said) A SOCK! Going into marathon training, though, I think I'm gonna have to come off a buck or two and just buy the darn things.

  3. Hi A,
    This is all very good to know:) I still need a compression sock....not really sure what I am waiting for! I will need a pair of those babies for marathon training and after:) I love the pink color!

    I signed up for the Red White and Boom! I am running on my running group's team. I am sure that I am the slowest:) Oh well, it will be fun!