Whether they’re covered in polka dots, lobsters, American flags, superheroes, bulldogs, sailboats or robots, crazy socks have a number of hidden benefits.
In a world where conformity often reigns supreme, it takes a bold individual to throw on a pair of socks covered in arbitrary neon colors and proudly exhibit them in public.
People who wear crazy socks are rebellious and expressive. Wacky sock wearers are leading a subtle revolution against uniforms and propriety. They refuse to let social standards dictate what adorns their feet, and other people, who aren’t audacious enough to wear dragon-patterned socks, respect them for it.
Throughout history, there are myriad examples of fashion serving subversive purposes, some more dramatic than others. In Scotland, for example, tartan has a long history as a symbol of rebellion. During the 18th century, there were revolts against the British crown in the Scottish Highlands, known as the Jacobite Uprisings. At the time, people often wore tartan to signify they sympathized with the rebellion, the Guardian highlights. Tartan became so associated with the uprisings that after the rebels were ultimately defeated at the Battle of Culloden, the British crown made it illegal to wear it with the 1746 Dress Act. Consequently, Scots couldn’t legally wear kilts until the act was repealed in 1782.
While wearing crazy socks isn’t nearly as subversive or political, it’s still a jab at the status quo and an expression of individuality. What you wear says a lot about your personality, and as Quartz contends, crazy socks help emanate a more vivacious, innovative and intriguing image, particularly at work: Colorful or character socks show playfulness and make a great icebreaker or way to connect with others …
Another possible advantage of wearing fanciful socks and other unexpected attire: You build a brand as ‘the gutsy guy’ or a creative type and over time, it may give you more room to bend or break rules. This makes a lot of sense, as research shows our clothing choices often dictate the ways others view and treat us. While it would be nice to live in a world where people didn’t immediately judge one another off appearances, that’s simply not the case at the moment. More importantly, what we wear also impacts the way we feel about ourselves, or our self-perception.