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Sock Fetish

Updated: APRIL 14, 2022
Reviewed by Kinkly Staff
on April 13, 2022

A sock fetish is a sexual interest in socks. This includes attraction to and arousal by the wearing of socks and their sexualized removal. A sock fetish appears to be related to foot fetishism, only the feet these fetishists admire are wearing socks. It is usually women's socked feet that are fetishized.

Online, sock fetishists might view pictures of socked feet, or even purchase worn socks to smell and enjoy in the privacy of their homes. In this way, sock fetishism resembles a used panty fetish, for which there is a sizeable online market.

The smelling of used clothing items, and the fetishes that fall within that realm, may also be referred to as olfactophilia, or an arousal that is derived from particular odors. In the case of a sock fetishist, that odor is dirty socks. A 1994 study found that 45% of people with foot fetishes are aroused by smelly used socks.

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More About Sock Fetish

Although sock fetishes were being touted as a "new trend" in online news articles published in 2021, Google Trends shows interest in the topic over the past five years to be relatively static. That said, social media and more visible online trading platforms may be bringing this underground fetish to more people's attention.

As it turns out, the actual smell of used socks is complex, and remains an area of ongoing study. Research shows it is a mixture of ammonia, fatty acids and lactic acid. Dogs are known to be very drawn to their owners' socks and may fixate on them, particularly during periods of separation anxiety. This suggests there is something chemically unique about a person's foot odor that may be part of the turn-on for fantasists.

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