Dos and Don'ts of Ames Walker Compression Hosiery

The world of compression hosiery can be truly difficult to navigate. With the science behind the medical effectiveness, the differing levels of compression, and the variety of fabrics and styles that are available, anyone can get lost in the information overload! That’s why we are here at Ames Walker- to help you better understand your specific needs, and which specific products will be most beneficial for you. Every customer is different, and we cater to you, as an individual. Even though each customer’s needs and preferences vary, there are a few cut-and-dried rules for compression hosiery etiquette. This article discusses some DOS and DON’TS of the graduated compression hosiery world. Take these principles to heart, and your stockings will feel less like a medical punishment, and more like a lifelong friend.


DO Find the Perfect Fit

First things first, people. Compression hosiery is all about sizing. Size and fit are the foundation on which your journey to better blood flow will begin. There are individual size charts on each product we offer, so be sure to refer to the size chart on your preferred product page when determining which size fits you correctly. 

DON’T Cut Your Circulation Off

Check to ensure the product is not “bunching up” at the ankle area (or behind the knee after you receive them.) If the pressurized material in your compression stockings overlap, it causes a “tourniquet” effect, similar to a rubber band pressing into your legs. This issue can be avoided by taking your measurements as soon as you wake up, checking that specific item’s size chart, and then ordering accordingly. Call us at 1-877-525-7224 if you have questions! Do not ever fold over the top of your compression garment.  This creates a tourniquet effect and can be dangerous.

DO Practice Proper Execution

After you order the correct size, most of the work is done- or so you thought. Now comes the real work! Putting on and taking off compression hosiery can be a real workout, if you don’t have the proper technique down. There are several videos on that show the most effective ways to don and doff your stockings. We also offer a variety of donning aids to help with putting on your compression products! You can browse them by typing the term “donning” in the search bar at the top of our website, when you’re finished reading this article. There’s still plenty to learn!

DO Verify the Compression Level

One of the biggest questions you probably have is, “Which compression level is right for me?” More than likely, you’re here because your doctor noticed a venous related issue at your last visit, and suggested compression hosiery to you as a solution for swelling, aching, discomfort, to help prevent blot clots, and to boost your (already amazing) sense of style. While you will need to consult with your doctor to verify which compression level he thinks is best for you, you can also refer to our guide for a general idea of what each level addresses. See it here:

DON’T Underestimate the “Clark Kents” of the Stocking World

Graduated compression products are not your average wardrobe accessory. While they absolutely can be tastefully worn with virtually any outfit, they are more than a fashion statement or leg warming device. These hosiery items pack a medical punch, aiding in the reduction of swelling, spider and varicose veins, risk of blood clots, feet and leg discomfort, lower body heaviness or hotness, and other venous related ailments. You would never know the difference in a traditional pair of pantyhose, and a highly beneficial pair of graduated compression hose- just by looking! The compression hosiery offering is just as attractive as any other hosiery outlet today. Plus, they offer some “super” perks that others, well- just don’t.

DO Have Fun With Your Shopping Experience

There are so many different textures, styles, materials, patterns, and colors, that you are guaranteed to stumble across something that you will not only benefit from, but will also be delighted to wear! Some of our best selling sheers might be the spice you’re looking for when planning that formal outfit. Or, our bright and energizing sports socks could motivate you to finally get out there and run in the mornings! Practical is not always boring!

DO Wash, Wear, and Repeat

Wash and wear your compression garments the same frequency you would your regular socks and hosiery items. Keep several pairs on hand, so you can alternate your pairs, and make them last longer. A typical pair of compression hose when worn a couple times a week, usually need to be replaced every 4-6 months. Avoid fabric softener when laundering, and use a detergent specifically made for compression garments- like our AW Hosiery Wash. Buy it here:

DON’T Over-Accessorize

Make sure when you are putting on and taking off your hose, that you are not wearing any jewelry that may pick or snag the stockings. Donning gloves are one of the BEST things you can use to help the donning and doffing process to be a little easier. Avoiding snags and rips will lengthen the life span of your hosiery items!

DO Rise and Shine with your Compression Hosiery

It is best to put your compression hose on early in the morning, before swelling occurs. As soon as you wake up, slip on your support hose! This will help optimize the effects of compression hosiery to control the swelling in your legs. Prevention really is the best method!

DO Improvise

If you need a hosiery product that is “larger” in the waist and stomach area, try the maternity styles! Our maternity styles come with a comfortable, extended waist line- meant to fit comfortably on larger bellies. This is why they also work for plus size figures! If you are comfortable in your compression garments, you will enjoy wearing them more.


These Dos and Don’ts will help you in your journey to become a successful Ames Walker customer, and compression hosiery advocate. Armed with this knowledge, and your compression garments, we know you’re on a path to living healthy and happy- so we’ve done our job! If you have further questions or concerns, please call us at 1-877-525-7224 or email us at


Written April 2018 | Page Last Updated February 2022

Kaki Zell - Vice President of Sales, Marketing, eCommerce at Legs-4-Life LLC

Kaki holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and Management from VirginiPolytechnic Institute and State University. Shes been working in the medical device industry over 11 years and currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Greensboro Science Center.



Healthline. “DVT Compression Stockings: Benefits, Uses, and More” 

Medical News Today. “10 Home Remedies for Varicose Veins” 

PeaceHealth. “Compression Stockings: How to Use Them” 


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