A new study has revealed just how many socks go missing in the UK every year – proving that we’re all useless at laundry or that socks have minds of their own!

Amazingly, 84 million socks go walkabouts every single year, costing us a whopping £2 billion annually.

A survey of 2,000 adults found that most get lost under the bed, blow off washing lines or drop behind radiators and furniture.

The study also found that men are the worst offenders, with just 26% caring whether their socks are in matching pairs!

Now, two statisticians have come up with a mathematical formula to predict the risk of losing items in the wash…

The algebraic equation is (L (p x f) + C (t x s) ) – (P x A) and the higher the figure, the greater the likelihood of losing socks where:

**L =** Laundry size, calculated by multiplying the number of people in your house (p) by the number of washes you do in a week (f);

**C =** Complexity of washing, calculated by multiplying the number of dark and white washes households do in a week (t) by the number of socks washed in a week (s);

**P =** Positivity towards doing the laundry, measured on a scale of 1 to 5 with 1 being a ‘strong dislike’ and 5 ‘strong enjoyment’;

**And A =** Attention paid, measured as the total number of precautions taken at the start of each wash out of checking pockets, unrolling sleeves and turning clothes the right way around.