What to Do With Old Socks: Creative and Practical Ways to Repurpose Them

Discover a multitude of creative and practical ways to repurpose old socks. From useful household hacks to imaginative crafts, you’ll learn an array of solutions to the age-old question of what to do with old socks.

Feet with a holey sock.

When cleaning out your sock drawer, it’s common to find single socks whose partners have mysteriously disappeared, pairs of socks worn thin and others in good condition, but no longer wanted. Instead of throwing these old socks away, consider the many great ways you can repurpose them. The next time you’re about to throw out those holey socks or lonely socks, think again.

Socks, whether they’re long tube socks, high socks or baby socks, are made from durable and often stretchy material, making them perfect for various uses. From craft projects like sock puppets and hacky sacks to practical solutions for household needs, there are many things you can do with old socks. This article will explore some of the clever ways you can turn your old socks into useful items, reducing textile waste and making good use of what you have.

Old underwear and other garments often get the short end of the stick when it comes to recycling, but not so with socks. There are some great ideas for what to do with old socks, from simple and practical to creative and fun included here. These ideas offer an easy way to give your old, mismatched socks a second life, providing solutions for common problems and opportunities for crafty creations.

Old Rags

Socks make great cleaning rags. Use a clean sock to scrub down the bathroom or for quick clean-ups around the house. It’s a great use for those socks that are too worn to wear but too good to throw away.

Insulator for Cold Drinks

The next time you have a cold drink, try using a sock as an insulator. Just cut off the foot part and wrap it around your drink. It not only works as an insulator, but it also keeps the sweat off your drink.

Moisturizing Hands and Feet

Old socks can help moisturize dry, cracked hands and feet. Apply a moisturizing hand or foot cream and then put on an old sock to lock in the moisture. This hack is especially helpful during cold weather.

Heat or Cold Packs

You can transform an old sock into a rice heating pad or cooling pack. Fill up the sock with rice, microwave it for a limited time, and enjoy the warmth on your sore muscles. Or freeze it to use as an ice pack.

Salt Sock for Earaches

If you or your children suffer from earaches, a salt sock can provide relief. Fill an old sock with the necessary ingredients, warm it up, and place it on the affected ear. It’s an easy and natural way to soothe minor ear pain.


Use an old sock as a glove to dust your house. For a better clean, try adding a bit of homemade wood cleaner. Socks are great for dusting hard-to-reach places.

Alternative to Gloves

Need to play in the snow but can’t find your gloves? Use a couple of socks as an alternative. They may not be as warm as gloves, but they’ll do in a pinch.

Cover for Ice Packs

Instead of placing an ice pack directly on your skin, cover it with an old sock. The sock will lessen the sting of the cold, making it more comfortable to use.

Tie Dye

If the socks are faded but still in good shapes consider turning them into a pair of Tie Dye Socks. It’s a fun and easy DIY for adults and kids.

Prevent Glasses Scratches

If you need to store your glasses but don’t have a case, an old sock can provide protection. Just make sure there’s nothing scratchy in your upcycled sock first!

Hand Warmers

Smaller socks can be filled with rice, microwaved, and used as hand warmers in the winter. Or if you want something a bit fancier, you can sew your own reusable hand warmers too.

Holder for Spare Change

A sock can make a fun and easy-to-carry holder for spare change. This is especially great for kids who love to collect and carry small items.

DIY Dog Toy

You can create a simple toy for your dog by using a pair of old socks. If there are any holes in the sock, you can quickly sew them up. Stuff the sock with another sock or some scrap fabric without overfilling it. Finally, tie a knot at the open end of the sock, and voila! You have a homemade toy that your dog will love.

Protecting Valuables

Old socks can be used to protect valuables during a move or while in storage. Just place the items inside the sock and use a rubber band to secure the open end. This is an excellent way to protect small pieces that could be easily damaged.

Potpourri Sachets

Fill the sock with dried flowers, herbs and spices, then tie or sew it shut. You can then place these in drawers or closets to keep them smelling fresh.

Garden Ties

Old socks can be cut into strips and used as ties in the garden. They can help support growing plants like tomatoes and are softer on the plants than wire ties.

Sock Puppets

Old socks are perfect for creating sock puppets. You can decorate them with buttons for eyes and felt for the mouth. Kids love putting together fun puppet shows!

Sock Bun for Hair

You can cut the toe off the sock and roll it to create a donut shape, which can be used to make a perfect bun in your hair. It’s more affordable than buying a bun donut.

Tennis Ball Carrier

An old sock can be a handy carrier for a tennis ball. Just place the ball in the sock, tie a knot and you have a convenient handle for carrying your balls to match or throwing a ball for your dog during a game of catch.

Hacky Sack

If you’re nostalgic for the ’90s, make a hacky sack out of an old sock. Fill it with rice or dried beans, sew or tie it shut and get kicking!

Arm Warmers

Cut off the foot part of a pair of socks and you have a pair of homemade arm warmers. This is a great way to stay warm in chilly weather, especially if you’re typing or doing other work that requires your fingers to be free.

Fingerless Gloves

Similar to the arm warmers, you can also turn high socks into fingerless gloves. After cutting off the foot section, simply cut a hole for your thumb and you’re ready to go.

Dryer Balls

Roll up a few socks into a ball and secure them with a durable rubber band. The next time you do laundry, throw the ball in the dryer with your clothes. It’s an eco-friendly alternative to dryer sheets, and a great use for old socks. Or you can make your own wool dryer balls if you want something new.

Stress Ball

Fill a sock with rice or lentils, then tie or sew it shut to make a stress ball. The next time you feel overwhelmed, squeeze the stress ball to help you relax. You can also used a balloon filled with homemade slime for a different texture.

Pin Cushion

Fill a sock with cotton or other soft material, then sew it shut to create a pin cushion. This is a practical solution for any sewing enthusiasts out there.

Cat Toy

Fill a sock with catnip and tie it shut to create a fun toy for your cat. It’s a simple and cost-effective way to entertain your furry friend.

Golf Club Covers

Protect your golf clubs by using old socks as covers. This is a clever way to repurpose high socks, especially if you’re a golfer.

Bird Feeder

Fill a sock with birdseed, tie it off, and hang it outside. It’s a simple and fun project that can bring all sorts of birds to your yard.

Then you can make my Hanging Bird Feeder Craft and do a test to see which feeder the birds in your area prefer!

Draft Stopper

Stuff a long sock with other old socks or materials (like rice, beans or kitty litter) and place it against a drafty door or window. It’s an easy and efficient way to keep your home warm during the colder months.

Windshield Wiper Covers

During the winter, cover your windshield wipers with old socks to prevent them from freezing to the glass. It’s a clever use for those unwanted socks.

Storing Christmas Ornaments

Old socks can provide the perfect padding for delicate Christmas ornaments when you’re putting them away after the holidays. They’re more durable and eco-friendly than tissue paper or bubble wrap.

Wrist Rest

Fill a sock with rice or lentils and sew it shut. You now have a comfortable wrist rest for when you’re typing or using a mouse, reducing strain on your wrist.

Soap Pouch

Put a bar of soap in a sock and tie it shut. The sock acts as a loofah, and when you’re done with the soap, you can just replace it. It’s an easy way to make your soap last longer and reduce waste.

A simple hack for gardeners is to tie one of these onto your outdoor hose. Then when you’re done gardening, you can easily wash your hands before heading back into the house. Just be sure to use eco-friendly soap!

Dry Erase Board Eraser

An old sock makes a great eraser for dry erase boards. Just slip the sock over your hand and wipe the board clean.

Shoe Protectors

If you’re doing a messy job like painting or gardening, cover your shoes with old socks to keep them clean. It’s an easy way to protect your footwear from dirt and paint.

Reusable Swiffer Pad

An old sock can be used as a replacement for a Swiffer pad. Just slip it onto the Swiffer, use as usual, and then wash and reuse.

Cat Litter Odor Absorber

Old socks can be filled with cat litter and placed in areas where you want to absorb odors. It’s a clever and cost-effective way to keep your home smelling fresh.

Table Leg and Chair Leg Protectors

Cut the foot part off the socks and slip them over the legs of your tables and chairs. They will protect your floors from scratches.

From practical uses to creative crafts, there are endless possibilities when it comes to repurposing old socks. By finding new uses for these often-overlooked items, you’re not only reducing waste, but you’re also making the most out of what you already have.

So the next time you’re about to toss out an old pair of socks, remember these tips and give them a new life. It’s a fun, cost-effective, and eco-friendly way to declutter and organize your home.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *