Best Compression Socks for Pregnancy in 2018 Nov.

Updated by Zoey Miller and verified by the thebabbleout.com Research Team. Last updated on Aug 31, 2018.

The body of an expecting mother goes through a lot in those nine months. So, it is crucial that you take good care of your body during pregnancy and do everything that will make this time as comfortable as possible. Pregnant women often face many physical challenges during later stages of pregnancy, and swollen legs and feet are one of the commonest one.

I still remember the time when I was pregnant with my daughter, and I encountered the dreaded 'pregnancy swelling' during my second trimester. To say that it was painful is surely an understatement! I was so uncomfortable and in agony that on some days I couldn't even get out of my bed. I tried everything from keeping my legs elevated when I slept to massaging my feet with essential oils, but nothing seemed to work. You know what helped me get through that phase? Compression socks!

Compression socks, also called compression stockings, are elastic socks that apply positive pressure on your legs and feet once worn. The compression reduces the accumulation of fluids (edema) and relieves swelling. Compression socks also help pregnant women who have painful and swollen varicose veins or spider veins. Trust me, the moment I tried these excellent products on, my pain went from unbearable to manageable! So, yes compression socks work wonders in reducing the pregnancy-related swelling and pain. In fact, I put compression socks in the top three must-have things during pregnancy!

Best Compression Socks for Pregnancy

Rating

Product

Price

My Rating

EDITOR'S CHOICE

Sockwell Women's Graduated Compression Socks

BEST VALUE

TOFLY Knee High Compression Stockings

3.

Physix Gear Sport Compression Socks

4.

SB SOX Compression Socks

5.

MadeMother Pregnancy Compression Socks


5 Best compression socks for pregnancy 

There are a ton of compression socks on the market, each of them claiming to be the best compression socks for pregnancy. However, not all the compression socks are good. While there are some great socks in the market, there are even more complete disasters. So, it is important that you pick the ones that are the best.

Well, here are five of the best compression socks that I have used and would recommend to any mother-to-be to help alleviate that pregnancy swelling!

Sockwell Women's Graduated Compression Socks

The Sockwell compression socks are specifically designed for women, which is a huge plus! They are one of my favorite compression socks for more reasons than one.

Firstly, they are made from a composite material with 32% merino wool, 32% stretched nylon, 31% bamboo rayon, and 5% spandex. The combination of these materials ensures that the sock stays in shape even after you have been wearing it for hours. I used to wear these socks all day, and they never loosened.

Another great thing about these socks is the fact that they are so comfortable that you would forget that they are on your feet; even if you wear them for hours on end! The compression pressure that these socks offer is between 15-20 mm of Hg and the compression is graduated, which is a plus.

The proprietary AccuFit® technology makes the socks easy to fit most women as well. The sole of these socks are cushioned, and they are great to walk on hard floors.

Overall, I love these socks, and if you are looking for knee-high compression socks, you can't go wrong with these.

PROS

  • Great fit
  • ​Good compression
  • Durable
  • Cushioned sole
  • Holds the compression for extended hours
  • Available in multiple colors

CONS

  • Can be a bit tricky to put on

TOFLY Knee High Compression Stockings

The TOFLY compression stockings are one of my favorite high compression pressure stockings. These socks are open toed, that makes them great to wear around the house and in the bed. These socks provide a compression pressure of 20-30 mm of Hg without you feeling like an Anaconda is gripping your legs!

Made with a combination of Nylon, Spandex, and microfiber, these socks are made to last. I have been using these for quite some time, and they haven't lost their elasticity even a bit. I also love the fact that these socks are breathable and get this; anti-bacterial!

Another great thing about these socks is that the soles are reinforced so that they don't slip even on linoleum floors.

As far as the fit goes, they are quite nice as well. The reinforced heel-box makes sure that the socks won't slip off your feet. Available in black and nude colors, they are my go-to socks if I need high compression socks.

PROS

  • Good compression
  • ​Durable
  • Anti-bacterial and anti-odor
  • Slip-proof
  • Reinforced heel-box for a better fit
  • Available in black and nude colors

CONS

  • Can be a bit expensive

Physix Gear Sport Compression Socks

Hands down, one of the most stylish compression socks on this list, the Physix Gear Sport socks are perfect for pregnancy. They offer medium compression pressure and are designed to fit perfectly.

One of the great features of these socks is the choice of the material. The socks are made from 80% nylon and 20% spandex. The quality of these socks is just superb. They feel well-made and durable.

I have had these socks for quite some time now, and they haven't worn down a bit. I still use them when I am flying for more than 5 hours, and they work like a charm.

If you are looking for compression socks that look as good as they feel, then these are for you. The knee-high socks will help you get that swelling under control in no time.

They are available in many colors, but unfortunately, they don't come in nude color. That said, it is not a deal-breaker at all!

PROS

  • Excellent quality
  • ​Good compression pressure
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Available in multiple colors

CONS

  • These socks are a bit expensive, but they are worth every penny!

SB SOX Compression Socks

The SB SOX compression socks are equally favorite compression socks among athletes as well as pregnant women for a reason! They offer 20-30 mm of Hg compression pressure with a great design and a comfortable fit.

The best thing about these socks is the fact that they have a reinforced heel and toe region that allows for a better fit than most similarly priced socks on the market. They are made from a composite material that allows you to wear the socks for a prolonged time without losing elasticity. The socks are surprisingly breathable as well.

The socks are very easy to put on and are comfortable for long stretches of time. I had worn them on a 10-hour flight to India, and they worked like a charm!

You also get a free e-book with every purchase and the company is very active on social media. They often post some great content and also send out weekly newsletters with some great tips and facts.

PROS

  • Comfortable fit
  • ​Good compression pressure
  • Anti-slip
  • Breathable material
  • Gradient pressure

CONS

  • The socks may be a bit too tight for some women

MadeMother Pregnancy Compression Socks

One of the most comfortable compression socks that I own, the MadeMother Compression socks get a lot of things right. These socks are very comfortable to put on and offer an excellent gradient compression which makes the pain just go away!

The socks provide 25-30 mm of Hg at the ankle and the foot, 15-20 mm of Hg in the middle of the leg and the calf and 15-20 mm of Hg under the knee. The combination is so effective that you will feel an instant relief even if you have quite an aggressive swelling.

The toes and the heel area is padded with an extra comfortable material so that you won't feel the pressure of the hard floor. They are very easy to put on as well. Although I am not an exceptionally tall woman, these socks fit me the best of all the socks that I have tried over the years.

Another great thing about these socks is that the company offers a 100% money-back guarantee if you 'don't fall in love' with these socks!!

PROS

  • One of the best fitting socks that I have used
  • ​Good compression pressure
  • Super comfortable
  • Durable
  • Gradient pressure

CONS

  • The socks are a bit expensive and are available only in one color

Why do you need compression socks?

Swelling is a common and natural thing for almost every pregnant woman. You see, when you are pregnant, your body retains more fluid to make your tissues soft for easy expansion as the baby grows. However, the retention of this huge amount of water can also cause some serious complications.

One of the most common complications associated with increased swelling of the legs and ankles is the risk of developing Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT). It is a condition wherein you can develop a blood clot due to increased fluid retention and blood volume expansion during the later stages of pregnancy and even after delivery.

Compression therapy can help reduce the swelling and hence can significantly decrease the risk of developing a DVT. Compression stockings can assist you in some other ways as well. Here are a few examples:

  • They can help prevent development of varicose veins
  • The gradient compression that is provided by the compression stockings improves the blood flow into your legs which reduce fatigue and can prevent DVT
  • They can contribute to reducing the pain associated with the swelling as well

Compression therapy is not only effective; it is essential to prevent complications associated with the pregnancy swelling.

What are different types of compression socks?

If you have spent some time researching for compression stockings on the internet, I am sure that you just have come across different 'types' of stockings.

Generally speaking, the pregnancy compression stockings can be of the following three 'types.'

Knee-high compression socks

As the name suggests, these compression stockings go from your ankle to your knees. These are often called compression socks as they are the same length as knee socks. The knee-high socks are great if you have an excessive swelling near your ankles or in your calf.

Thigh-high stockings

These socks provide additional support to your lower thighs along with the ankle and calf. The thigh-high compression stockings are quite useful if you have more swelling around your knees and in your thighs.

Full-length pantyhose-style compression stockings

These socks look just like regular pantyhose. The socks are great if you are experiencing some lower back pain along with swollen feet and legs.

Now, the question remains, which of these three types of compression socks should you buy? You must be thinking that if the full body stockings are available, why should you buy the knee-high or thigh-high ones, right?

Well, I thought the same when I was pregnant and got the panty-hose style compression stockings. Although they did provide some excellent support, they were difficult to put on. Besides, I only had pain in my ankles and calves. So, the added compression did not give me any added benefit over the knee-high socks.

Now, your case might be different. If you have a light to moderate swelling in the ankles or calves, you are better off buying the shouter knee-high or thigh-high socks just because they are much simpler to put on.

How much compression do you need?

Compression stockings apply compression in a gradient manner. By that I mean, the pressure decreases from your ankle all the way up. In other words, the pressure is highest at the ankles and decreases as you go up.

Now, as there is a range, you will often see compression stockings labeled in range of compression pressure.

  • 15-20 mm of Mercury (Hg): These socks exert a pressure of 20 millimeters of Mercury on the ankles, and the pressure decreases to 15 mm of Hg on the topmost part. This compression range is adequate for most pregnant women. These socks are great for relieving pain, varicose veins, etc.
  • 20-30 mm of Hg:  These stockings have a higher compression force compared to the previous ones. If the 15-20 mm of Hg stockings don't work for you, then you may try these.

For most pregnant women, the 15-20 mm of Hg compression range works the best.

What to look for in a good compression stocking?

Now, if you are in the market for some compression stockings, there are some things that you should pay attention to while buying them. Here are some of the most important features that make a compression stocking best.

The size/type

As we discussed in the previous section, the compression socks for pregnancy women come in different types. Make sure that you are buying the ones that will meet your needs.

For instance, if you have a swelling or pain in your ankles, go for the knee-high ones. If you have a lower back pain as well, you might want to consider the pantyhose-style compression stockings. Just remember that the smaller the stockings, the easier it is to get them on. Pantyhose-style stockings can be notoriously difficult to get on, especially during the latter half of the pregnancy.

The choice of material

The selection of the material used to construct the stockings is also crucial. The whole concept of compression stockings works if they can provide the required compression. There are a ton of products out there that lose their elasticity after only a few uses, and you don't want to pick those.

You want compression socks that will hold the compression throughout the day and won't loses the compression after a few hours. Spandex is an excellent material along with nylon and rayon. Make sure that your socks are made from materials like these.

Comfort and fit

Comfort and fit are also crucial feature to look for in compression socks. If the socks are not comfortable or if they don't fit you properly, they won't be of any help. Make sure that the socks you pick have features such as a reinforced heel-box that will ensure a comfortable fit.

The compression pressures

As we discussed earlier, there are two compression pressure ranges as far as the compression socks are concerned. As a rule of thumb, I would suggest giving the 15-20 mm of Hg compression socks a try before you try the 20-30 mm of Hg, high-pressure socks.

Most women will experience a positive effect with the lower pressure socks and won't need the higher pressure at all. However, if the lower compression pressure is not enough for you, give the higher compression socks a try.

The verdict

Swollen and painful legs and ankles can take the joy of pregnancy away. Thankfully, compression socks can help you tackle this problem head on! After reviewing some of the best compression socks for pregnancy, the Sockwell Women's Graduated Compression Socks take to top spot. These socks are designed specifically for women and fit perfectly whether you are a tall, short or petite woman!

I also love the quality of these socks a lot. They are made with some of the finest composite material that is as comfortable to wear as it is long-lasting. If you are looking for compression socks for relieving that pregnancy swelling, Sockwell Women's Graduated Compression Socks is your best option!

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Zoey Miller

Zoey is our baby equipment expert. Her topics are: baby, diapers, feeding, and pregnancy. She graduated from Teachers College, Columbia University and worked at nursery and kindergarten. Unfortunately she had some issues when she wanted a baby, but she eventually solved the problem and gained huge knowledge in this topic. She is a mother of 2 and her expertise has been accumulated from her nursery job and her own life with Naomi and Daisy. Linkedin