Review: Pierre Henry

Not long ago, I approached Pierre Henry about reviewing them on my blog after seeing their brand on Instagram. I was promptly contacted back by Nora Sarajuddin, in charge of Product Management and Content Development, who agreed to send me something. Looking at their website, I was impressed by the selection of over-the-calf dress sock offerings -- the only type of sock they produce. By focusing specifically on this and selling online they are able to offer great value to the consumer for the price.

On top of that, you won't find the usual offerings of over-the-calf solids with maybe a few subtle patterns at best. The majority of their socks are interesting, bold patterns. Though I am a devotee of solid socks that match my trousers most of the time, I do occasionally like to express some individuality. I also commend brands like this for filling an untapped niche in the menswear market. There are also some black, grey, and navy socks for those who need them for a conservative work environment.

Nice, simple box. However, I think they could save materials by skipping this and just putting them in a soft envelope.

All their socks are sold in multi-packs of three or more, which start at less than what one pair of some luxury over-the-calf socks goes for. It's not going to be Sea Island cotton or anything at this price, but it's still comfortable and sturdy. For this review, I was sent just one pair for the purposes of evaluating quality. I proceeded to "field test" them at work.

I received a pair of socks that goes with almost anything, colour- and pattern-wise.

The only initial gripe I have is that the website information is misleading. It claims they are 100% combed cotton, yet the packaging clearly states they are 82% cotton, 12% Spandex, and 6% elastic. (The latter two fibres account for their double comfort elastic top.) It would be more accurate to say that they have a higher cotton content than most. Even Pantherella and Marcoliani, two of the foremost hosiery brands, cotton dress socks are 80% cotton and 20% nylon. Socks in Pierre Henry's price range can have as low as 50-70% cotton!

At work.

While they stayed taut all day and never bunched, they did slip a bit from where I had them in the morning. Maybe one inch. But this is no different from any of my over-the-calf socks. You can pull them back up if you're picky, but leave them alone and they will not slip down past your calf. That's the whole point of over-the-calf after all. Besides that, they kept as cool as cotton can keep your feet. Cotton is the typical sock fabric, though I believe Merino wool is superior for dress socks. More on that later.

At the end of the day and after two washings. I didn't pull them up once.

Where there is a definite improvement over other brands in any price range is the pattern and colour selection. You can't find anything else like it, particularly since over-the-calf socks are nowhere near as popular as calf height. They should be, but I suppose some find them old-fashioned or think they aren't going to be that comfortable. If you think about them all day, you'll feel them, but as a seasoned over-the-calf wearer I pretty much forget about mine within a minute of putting them on.

However, mine are mainly Merino wool instead of cotton. This is because they are more efficient at evaporating moisture, even during summer. Cotton socks tend to retain sweat and slowly dissipate it from within the shoe. Thin wool socks are nothing to be afraid of in warm weather and can be worn well into winter. They even machine wash better than cotton. This is why I've asked them to consider offering Merino wool products on top of more solid colours than black, grey, and navy. I think it would really make Pierre Henry a force to be reckoned with in the world of hosiery.

These are great socks and have held up well for two washes. No significant wear on the toe or heel and they are now the perfect size. I will definitely buy more. I just hope their colour and fabric selection increases over time.

The socks are pictured with twill suit trousers from Hart Schaffner Marx in the first picture, twill rope stripe suit trousers from iDesign in the second picture, and Carlyle dress shoes from Allen Edmonds in all pictures.

Nouveau Vintage received material compensation in exchange for this review. Every effort has been made to remain objective and consider the value for its full retail price.


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