For the first time ever, I finally tried wearing Army dress socks underneath regular Army socks on a long foot march. Since joining the Army, I’ve heard soldiers say that you can wear Army dress socks as an under-layer and it will help prevent blisters. Blisters typically form because of friction caused by materials rubbing against the skin over time. The chief cause of this is improper or worn-out boots.
Back in OCS, a friend turned me on to SuperFeet, which is a kind of hard insole. I always assumed that you wanted to get a cushioned insole and I’d often go to the PX and buy throw-away .99 insoles that were soft and squishy. My friend said that what you actually wanted was a hard insole to support the foot. He was right. That, plus good fitting boots have made blisters rare for me.
Back to the socks.
Yesterday, my unit did a 25 mile foot march and I figured I’d give the dress socks a shot. My boots fit a tad snugger because of the extra socks, and also a little warmer, but nothing too extreme. I didn’t change my socks at all during the movement and although my feet are sore, I didn’t get any friction blisters. I did get one impact blister on the ball of my left foot (you can just barely see it – the one on the right). I drained it last night and it doesn’t really hurt anymore. Walk far enough and it doesn’t matter what kind of socks or boots you wear, you’re going to get a blister.
Had I not worn the liners, I probably would have changed my socks at the turn-around point. I think the liners helped. My feet weren’t super-calloused before the foot march and I probably would have had some more blisters had I just worn Army socks. Going forward, I’ll probably wear the liners if I have a 12+ mile foot march.
Also, those are the prettiest feet I’ve ever seen on an infantryman, post-foot march.