I've worked for the shop for the last three years, but it wasn't until just a week ago that I did something I never thought I would: I got myself a pair of Darn Tough socks. Now, I've never thought there was anything wrong with Darn Tough - they sell well, they're decent looking, they have a lifetime guarantee, they're made in the USA, etc. As a saleswoman, I know the pitch like the back of my hand, but just because I sell them doesn't mean I want to wear them. Until now.
On a whim I decided I'd try out a pair of their Hike/Trek socks to see how they felt in athletic shoes. I play racquetball twice a week and up until last week, I would just cram my feet into two pair of generic "athletic" socks for extra padding and hope to God that no one I knew saw me walking to the gym. Even though I've listened to three years of customer raves and praises about the brand, my expectations weren't very high because I mean come on, they're just socks, right? How different could they possibly be!? Turns out, a whole lot.
The level of support and padding was incredible. It was as if their company had studied MY feet and designed them just for me. I jumped and leapt and danced my way around the court without even once noticing any discomfort or chafing. At the end of two solid hours of playing when I'd pranced my way home and slipped off my new-favorite-socks, I decided, "Ok, Darn Tough, you win. I kinda like you."
So that's all well and good - Darn Tough socks are supreme for my athletic endeavors. Great. But let's face it, I'm not a professional athlete and sports aren't where the majority of my day's hours are spent. What I am (in addition to a Total SockStar) is an assistant wedding photographer. That means for roughly 10 hours straight I'm running back and forth between reception halls, hotel rooms, outdoor photo locations, wherever the equipment is stored and of course winding my way endlessly between the tables during that first dance, trying to get the perfect shot. It's an entire day with little to no time to sit down and since it's arguably the most important day of someone's life you don't really have the ability to say, "Dude, my feet hurt, can we do this later?"
Last weekend I had planned on wearing slacks, thin, dark socks and ballet flats, but as I was getting ready I suddenly realized I could stuff my Darn Toughs into a pair of nice boots instead and no one would even know I was wearing hiking socks! The last thing anyone is going to pay attention to at someone's wedding is the shoes worn by the assistant photographer, right? Being a little bit unsure, I actually tossed the flats and backup socks in the car just in case I needed to change halfway through.
But what happened was this: I totally rocked it. Not once did I stop to think, "Oh man, my poor feet are tired!" I was super-assistant: corralling family members, holding lights, always at the ready with a lens, a battery, a quick sprint back to the ballroom to reclaim a forgotten tripod. At the end of a wedding the first thing I want to do is take off my shoes, but especially if I've been wearing boots, it's a good idea to wait until I'm all by myself because after that long being trapped in shoes pretty much anyone's feet start to stink. I also hadn't even washed my socks since playing racquetball (don't judge me, I'm actually a very clean person, just… lazy) so I was prepared for a not-so-nice-odor to be unleashed when the boots came off. Here's the stunning part: nothing. Nada. No odor whatsoever. I actually picked my socks up and tentatively held them up to my nose to see if it was true. It was. I couldn't believe it, they just smelled like wool socks and my feet themselves were happy, dry and fine to crawl into bed without even taking a shower.
So here I am, a completely changed woman. I want more. I want to wear Darn Tough every day. I want to re-think my style so that I can incorporate them into my outfit and still look trendy. I want to give them to the UPS guy and my mom and every person who walks in to the store. As a person who has worked with socks for over three years, it's rare to be surprised by a brand but I can honestly say that Darn Tough absolutely knocked my (fashionable but not so functional) socks off and replaced them with such a cozy, sturdy, perfect alternative that I'm completely hooked. I've been converted, and my feet are oh-so-very happy about it.