Staying warm in winter on the bike can be a challenge sometimes though there is plenty of kit around the help you. Jackets and trousers, for example, can come with hefty thermal liners to help keep the warmth in, particularly when the outer layer keeps the rain and wind out.
Similarly, layering up with a set of base layers, either year-round examples or warmer winter ones for when the temperatures really drops, is pretty much a given and hands and fingers that are out in the worst of the weather on exposed handlebars can easily be protected by winter gloves or indeed, heated gloves and grips to prevent numbness and cold.
But what about the feet? Toes can be just a vulnerable as fingers to the cold – generally, the feet are perhaps one of the most exposed parts of the body.
Related: Best mid-layer motorcycle clothing
Sure, like winter gloves for example, you can get plenty of waterproof and windproof boots that will keep your feet dry and keep chilling windblast away but what about when the ambient temperature drops and those toes get chilly?
This is where a pair of heated socks can come to the rescue. They will add warmth to the part of your body most exposed and furthest away from the core to not only keep your feet warm but also, prevent the rest of your body from getting cold as it tries to maintain the temperature in your tootsies.
With this in mind, here are some of our favourite ways to keep your toes warm this winter.
These short socks aren't cheap but they do get really good reviews online and look like quality items. They are a short design with a heated area around the toes and the ball of the feet and come with a pair of 4000mAh batteries that are good for up to eight hours of heating.
They have three heat settings with temperatures ranging from 35°C to 50°C and control is by a push-button on top of the sock. They are washable as well, once the battery is removed.
Three heat levels
Rechargeable batteries included
Button may be in way of boots
Gerbing Heated Socks
Gerbing are one of the brands of motorcycle clothing that produces quality heated kit and these long socks are no different. Designed to sit above the calf, they are made from stretch wicking material that can be washed by hand if necessary.
They use Gerbing’s Microwire heating technology to provide heat both above and below the foot and draw just 1.4A of current when in use. They are designed to be wired directly to the bike’s battery via a wiring harness or via a connection to Gerbing’s heated trousers to provide heat at all times on the bike.
Tall to keep lower leg warm
Heating surrounds feet
Powered by bike so permanent heating
Can only be used on the bike
Keis are another brand famous for heated kit which can either be powered directly from the bike's battery or via a single, central rechargeable battery that can be connected to a full suite of heated clothing.
These are to be used over a pair of thin socks, not on bare feet and under waterproof boots and use Keis’s Micro Alloy Element technology for even heating of the feet. They connect to the battery or the bike via a wiring harness or from heated trousers and can be used with their own heat controller to vary the level of warmth.
Power from battery of bike
Low current draw – 0.6A
Optional heat controller
Must be worn over another pair of socks
Heat Company Insoles
Not strictly heated socks but these air-activated heated insoles will still help keep the chill out of your boots whatever the weather and are useful back-ups in case you run out of power. This pack contains five pairs of insoles, each of which is activated simply by removing them from the sealed packed and the reaction to generate heat is instigated by contact with air.
They are good for eight hours yet will be ready for use for months as long as they are kept in their packaging. They are used by several European winter-sports teams and after their single-use, can be disposed of in regular rubbish.
No electrical power needed
Suit any footwear
Single-use, disposable items
These long socks from Macna are designed to be used in isolation or with other items from the company's range of heated clothing. They are made from cotton with a stretch element and the heating elements provide warmth to the toes, sole and instep.
Control comes from a smartphone app so there are no buttons to get in the way and they can be powered directly from the bike’s battery, via a wiring harness or via Macna clothing or from dedicated rechargeable batteries, though the batteries and wiring systems are not included.
Connect to bike or rechargeable batteries
Work with other Macna heated clothing
Smartphone app controls heating
Power supply not included
Another pair of socks to use a Bluetooth connection to your smartphone for control, these also use rechargeable batteries fitted inside the top of the sock to power them. They are a tall design, seemingly to fit above the calf muscle and provide warmth to the whole foot. Made from synthetic materials, the batteries provide up to 16 hours of heating from a single charge and the socks can be washed in 30°C water.
No direct-wiring option
Keis S102 Insoles
If you don't fancy the idea of heated socks or really like the non-heated ones you already have, then these heated insoles from Keis can help with a little additional warmth when you need it. Designed to sit in your boots, they connect to Keis's battery packs or the bike's battery via a wiring harness or through existing clothing, like heater trousers or vest and will provide gentle warming action from the base of the foot up.
Work with existing socks
Powered by battery or bike
Even heating over base of foot
No heat to top of foot
Sometimes the need is for the in between, where the weather is turning and you want something with comfort and some warmth.
While heated options are great, and there are many great options, here's some which are less heated and more thermal lined.
These 100% waterproof socks are very breathable, with a lining which will protect you from water, wind, mud cold and blisters, they're a very sensible choice. They feel a bit like a normal sock but with a waterproof wetsuit type lining, they are incredibly comfortable and capable of being worn on and off of the bike.
That wet suit style lining is actually a hydrophilic membrane, which is 100% waterproof and pulls moisture away from your skin. This means that any sweaty feet will be kept dry by these socks, like magic.
Warm and comfortable
No need for extra socks
Quite pricey for a pair of socks.
MotoGP Knee Length Winter Boot socks
These knee length wonders will keep your toes toasty over winter. Branded with the official Moto GP logo, so you can feel like you're on circuit even when you're not, they pull up to your knee to keep your lower legs warm. No one likes socks which finish before your boot does, it makes your feet colder.
These have a thick knit in the heel and sole for comfort and shock absorption and using high density materials, they double up on comfort and with an added bonus of keeping your feet warm.
Nice long length
MotoGP Logo is marmite