If you’re in the market for compression stockings what to buy depends on what you need them for, because they’re not all created equal.

If you have tired or puffy legs, varicose veins or have had deep vein thrombosis then you might benefit from wearing compression stockings – medical grade ones that is. If you want to reduce the chance of sore and tired muscles after sport, then sport or over the counter ones should do the trick. lf your job means you’re on your feet all day, you’re pregnant and have tired, puffy legs, go for medical grade, same if you’re travelling long distance – go for medical grade ones.

And they don’t have to be thigh high. Compression socks to the knee work equally well to maintain blood flow.

Medical grade ones come in grades or classes depending on how strong the compression is. We recommend class 1 stockings for most because they’re strong but not too strong and have graduated compression. This means the pressure at the ankle is greater than at the knee, creating a pressure gradient to encourage flow of blood or fluid out of your leg. Ones you buy over the counter have a lower level of compression and usually do not have graduated compression.

Free fittings for the best fit
But it’s best to get the right fit. No good if they’re too tight or too loose for you. We offer free fittings at all our monthly clinics: Compression Stockings