The first question everybody asks about over-the-calf socks is: Are they not too warm? No, the differentiation in warmth is quite minute for a couple of inches of wool/cotton/blend, and the difference in style is colossal. Shorter socks don’t stay up; they constantly fall down, they always bunch, and that is not a good look with a magnificently pressed suit in rather fine worsted.
On some days nonetheless, such as the past several in London, they are without doubt too hot. Even fine cottons, even a silk mix, even a linen mix. On those days, it is better to go without socks at all.
It should be noted, with the fine worsted. Bare ankles are not suitable for business. But then, when conducting business one is frequently in air conditioning and heat is less of an issue.
In every other circumstance, loafers and slip-ons work well without socks. It is desirable to change at some point during the day, to help with any scent. Suede is preferable to leather in a lace-up; unlined shoes are particularly comfortable. If you must, wear a slipper sock that sits inside the shoe. But make sure it remains hidden.
With cotton suits, with chinos, sockless slip-ons are stylish and surprisingly cool. A lot of blood runs near the surface of your ankles.