You might think at this point in history, it would be hard to be innovative in the world of socks. Yet, even after 25 years of making some of the best coverings for your feet, that’s exactly what Defeet has done. Originally looking for another way to be more environmentally conscious, their search brought them to another North Carolina company called Unifi. Specializing in various textiles and branded yarns, Defeet will be making use of their Repreve recycled yarns which are made from plastic bottles. After being ground into bottle flake, it’s then melted down into chip where a proprietary tracer is added which allows factories to test it down the line to ensure it is exactly what has been sold to them. From there it’s transformed into yarn which can include Unifi’s XS Cross Section technology which provides control over the shape of the fiber for better moisture wicking, and control over weight and other specifications.

The result? A sock made from recycled materials that provides up to 100% better moisture wicking than Defeet’s previous socks…


Initially available on the Levitator Lite 2 with Repreve, Defeet is moving towards replacing all of their non-wool socks with Repreve versions. The company is a strong believer in keeping things as local as possible, which is highlighted by the 90 jobs added at the Repreve factory in North Carolina. Even without the local connection though, the results seem to speak for themselves. After thorough testing in the 2016 Tour de France (including 7 stage victories), the Repreve socks have proven to be just as durable and well ventilated with a seamless toe design. Better still – at $14.99 all that new performance doesn’t come with an increased price tag.


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While we’re on the subject of using recycled, or upcycled materials, Cycle Dog continues to find new ways to keep your furry friend happy. The new Fuzzies line includes a Fuzz Ball filled with EcoFill – essentially a soft filling made from recycled plastic bottles. In spite of being super plush, Cycle Dog swears that the Fuzz Ball is very strong since it combines a 2 layer bonded laminate outer layer with the double stitching reversed so it’s on the inside of the ball. Starting at $10 for the small, prices go up to $22 for the large, and there are a number of other Fuzzies shapes like a crab and a turtle.

Cycle Dog is also making a big push for their custom branded options with a new POP display, and a $500 minimum. Companies can have their logo added to any of the Cycle Dog products, in any combination to meet the minimum, and the order will then include the rad display above.


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We’ve seen inner tubes upcycled in a number of ways, but these earrings and bracelets from Alixandra Barron Designs rank among the most ornate. Handmade by Alix in Burlington, VT, the pieces are priced around $20-40 as an average, depending on the style and size.

H/T to Berne on the earrings!


  1. Does it melt when in contact with DEET? I ruin the elasticity in my socks this way, regardless of brand or material. Even if I put my socks on 20 minutes after applying DEET to my calves, the DEET infused sweat runs down to my ankles and ruins yet another pair of socks.

    • Quit using DEET… There are a TON of other natural repellents that wont hurt your socks, or more importantly yourself. Eucalyptus-lemon balm is great. I quit using DEET years ago after spraying some on my arm and having my hand go numb for about 10 minutes. To me the DEET side effects are worse than any mosquito bite…

      • DEET SAVES AND SAVED MILLIONS OF LIVES. I understand your point of view but deet saves from malaria daily, lyme disease and our good new friend Zika. As a user of Watkin’s cream and a person who has worked as far north as the artic, I assure you, anyone I met north of James Bay have the usual chuckle on the first day of anyone using that approach. I wish I did not have to use it, but I do…

  2. I hope they have an ultra thin sock. Their regular “thin” socks don’t cut it and made my toes go numb in my snug shoes which are great with Swiftwicks…another option would be great

    • Have you tried the Defeet Levitator Lite socks? I use Swiftwick Aspire socks with my cycling shoes but have used the Levitator Lites in the past and they are thinner than anything Swiftwick currently produces. The Swiftwick Pulse was the thinnest sock I have ever used but that was discontinued pretty quick after its introduction.

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