Funny how something as simple as a sock can make such a big difference in the wintertime. While you could use your old gym socks this winter, there are really, really good reasons not to — and not just to keep from offending your friends' noses.

Ski and Snowboarding Socks

What makes these socks special is that they tend to do two things really well: they keep your feet warm and dry, and they provide extra padding at the points where we all tend to get blisters.

Most use a complex combination of natural and synthetic fabrics to provide warmth while preventing sweat from pooling at the feet. The fabrics are also designed to not bunch up around the toes or angkle, even under tons of stress.

Lightweight socks are good for warmer days, while medium and heavy weight fabrics have been tailored to specific weather conditions. Unless you do your winter sports in extreme temperatures, medium weight socks are often enough to keep your feet warm in most conditions.