Bombas makes the best socks we've ever worn — the brand has also donated over 41 million pairs to homeless shelters to date

Bombas makes the best socks we've ever worn — the brand has also donated over 41 million pairs to homeless shelters to date

October 8, 2020

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  • Cult-favorite startup Bombas was founded to address the fact that socks are the #1 most requested donation item in homeless shelters.
  • The company's socks are the end result of two years of research and development and solve common annoyances.
  • Every time you buy a pair, the company donates a pair of Bombas socks to someone in need. To date, Bombas has given away over 41 million pairs of socks.
  • The Insider Reviews team has tested the brand's casual socks, athletic socks, and dress socks over the years — and we think they're the best socks you can buy.

Before Bombas' socks became a cult-favorite of the direct-to-consumer (D2C) boom and a gift as safe and universally pleasing as candles, it was a company created primarily around a social mission.

When founders David Heath and Randy Goldberg realized homeless shelters were struggling to meet the demand for clean, longlasting socks, they started researching the market — and realized there was an opportunity to create an option in-between cheap multi-packs and niche, high-end technical pairs. 

So the two founded Bombas in 2013, and they set out to create one perfect, no-fuss iteration of the everyday sock. Heath and Goldberg approached the basic building block of a wardrobe as shoppers first, asking what they hated about their own typical pairs and marshaling atypical resources to engineer the shortcuts and solutions. Two years of detailed research and development — and one fateful episode of Shark Tank later — and Bombas sent a genuinely exciting update to the lowly sock out into the mainstream.

Bombas socks are "other" in the best way possible. Ankle socks have blister tabs, calf socks have thoughtfully placed tension, or "stay-up technology," and no-shows use a combination of heel grips and contoured seaming to stay put. The Y-stitched heel cups the back of your foot without creating bulk, and the toe seam is linked by hand — which gets rid of the annoying bump at the end of your toes in cheap pairs. The footbed is reinforced for a little extra cushion and longevity, and, in an effort to add arch support, the socks mirror the strong natural structure of a honeycomb across the mid-foot. 

The company also prioritizes quality materials, which is especially obvious in its collection of moisture-wicking and temperature-regulating merino wool. 

And for every pair of socks you purchase, Bombas donates another pair to someone in need. To date, the company is responsible for gifting over 41 million pairs of socks, all of which are specially designed to meet the needs of the homeless.

"We put as much thought and care into the production of the donation sock as [the originals]." Goldberg told Business Insider. "In working with giving partners to engineer a sock that would specifically meet the needs of the homeless, we designed the sock to be darker to avoid less visible wear and tear, added an anti-microbial treatment to prevent the growth of odor and fungus since these socks are not washed as frequently, and added reinforced seams for great durability, ensuring a longer lifespan." 

Bombas is also a certified B-Corp, meaning it has volunteered to be graded by the nonprofit B Lab each year to ensure they're meeting the highest standards of social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability. You can find other B-Corps we love to shop at here.  

Though a pair of Bombas socks will set you back further than a standard multi-pack at Target will (ankle socks start at $12), they'll last you longer, feel better on your feet, and benefit another person in need with a similarly upgraded essential. Business Insider's Reviews team has tested the brand's casual socks, athletic socks, and dress socks over the years, and we've been impressed by the comfort, longevity, and functionality every time. We think they're worth the investment if you can spare the extra money. They also make especially great gifts. 

Plus, the company occasionally offers 20% off your first order. Right now, you can save 20% as a first-time customer when you join its mailing list. You can also save up to 5% by buying a pack.

And, if you don't love your pair of Bombas, the company still has the sort of bulletproof customer guarantee that has grown increasingly rare. Bombas upholds a "no matter what, no questions asked, no holds barred, no ifs, no ands, no buts" happiness guarantee. "If you have a problem, we will solve it. Refund it. Send you new socks. Whatever it takes."

You can shop Bombas socks by material, height (No Show, Ankle, Quarter, Calf, Knee-High), or activity (Casual, Athletic, Dress). There's also the option to narrow athletic socks down by sport: running, cycling, ski, hiking, tennis, golf, grippers, and basketball.

Bombas has expanded in recent years into basics like sweatpants ($78) and t-shirts (from $36), but socks remain at the company's core. 

The bottom line

You can find a full range of Bombas socks from knee highs to dress socks in classic colors and adventurous colorways for men, women, and kids — each with the thoughtful attention to detail and comfort that have solidified their success as a D2C leader. 

If you're looking for an instant upgrade to everyday life and can afford to spend a little more on a few pairs of socks, we highly recommend investing in Bombas.

Plus, it doesn't hurt that the company serves as a successful example of business with positive impact; you get the best socks you've ever worn for a price that won't break the bank, and your purchase helps improve the lives of someone else at the most basic and necessary level.

Shop Bombas socks here.

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Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Insider Reviews team. We highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We operate independently from our advertising sales team. We welcome your feedback. Email us at [email protected]

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