Choosing the right underwear might not seem like the most crucial decision in the morning, but whether you’re a boxer, briefs or trunks kinda guy, you need to make sure the fit, style and fabric is right for you.
A lot of us underestimate the importance and power of good underwear. If it’s too tight, too loose, or if you’re wearing that old grey pair of pants that were once white, you’ve got to do something about it.
Underwear is a staple item, yet we tend to forget about it. We’re guilty of throwing the same pair on (after they’ve been washed, hopefully) day in and day out. We never really stop to consider whether the underwear we’re wearing is right for us. Whether it’s finding a pair that really complements your shape, provides enough support throughout the day, or allows your skin to breathe when you’re active, it’s vital to have a good selection in your drawer.
Boxers Vs Briefs
Just like clothes, there are an array of men’s underwear styles out there for you to choose from; fit and shape can make all the difference. So what really is the difference between boxers and briefs? And even what are briefs?! When there are so many options, how do you tell what will be best for you?
It’s essential to make sure that you feel comfortable in what you’re wearing. The fabric of your underwear needs to be breathable, gentle on your skin, work underneath the clothes you’re wearing, flatter your shape and be suitable for what you’re doing that day. So boxers or briefs?
There are good arguments on each side in the boxer vs briefs debate. You may be a boxers underwear guy through and through, but having a variety of different styles can be really beneficial. This doesn’t mean you have to wear a jockstrap under your suit to work, but you do need to consider certain factors before deciding to get into your usual briefs. For example, you wouldn’t buy a suit and tie for the gym, so why would you wear a pair of loose men’s supporting underwear to train in?
If you’re looking for comfortable men’s underwear, look no further than the boxer short. Boxer shorts are a popular choice of underwear because they provide more freedom than others, the baggy material allows the skin to breathe, in turn, this creates a more comfortable area for your package. Unlike briefs, some boxers also come with a quick exit, via the loose, gappy material at the front.
However, be aware that although you’ll get a nice breeze, this kind of underwear does not offer you the support that you may require. Boxers come in two styles: slim and casual fit.
- Slim Fit: More fitted round the legs, but still provide a little more room than the brief.
- Casual Fit: The most comfortable boxers. Loose fitting and allows room to move around.
Briefs are making a comeback. These guys are your friend. They offer comfort and support, covering all areas around your package and bottom, whilst providing your legs with a little more freedom. They’re the best in comfortable men’s underwear and come in three different styles: low, mid and full rise, which all have different benefits.
- Low Rise Boxer Briefs: Men’s low rise underwear is ideal if you fancy enhancing that parcel of yours. As stated in the name, this underwear has a low cut, meaning that they sit at the bottom of your hipbone.
- Mid Rise Briefs: These guys give you a little more coverage, coming up to your waistline, but still work as breathable underwear.
- Full Rise Briefs: Even more coverage is provided with this style, with the band sitting below your bellybutton. Full rise briefs are perfect for those who want to create the illusion of a slimmer waist.
Remember that whilst briefs are definitely coming back into fashion, they should never ever look like you’re wearing a nappy. If this happens, either change the type of brief you’re wearing, or get some boxers on sharpish.
So what are boxer briefs? There are some small differences between boxers and boxer briefs. This style provides the same coverage, if not more, than a pair of boxers, but without the excessively baggy look. They’re great for working out because they give you lots of support and protection.
However, due to the waistband sitting just above your hips – but lower than the full rise briefs – this style can accentuate the stomach, creating a muffin top. So if you’re a little wary of your tummy, then it’s best to avoid this type of underwear.
Another combination of the boxer and brief. Men’s trunk underwear has shorter legs than boxer shorts but have the same attractive, box shape. They’re not as baggy as the boxers, however, and provide you with a similar support to a pair of briefs.
A jockstrap is a sportsman’s best friend. Although they look a little complicated, their unique design really helps to provide added support to the more delicate regions of your body. There are three straps that connect up together. Two that go around the bottom of your backside, and one around the waist. So be prepared for a slight breeze on your derriere!
Men’s underwear with a pouch offers you a little lift and keeps your groin protected during sports and activities. It’s advisable to wear a jock strap for exercise and for more dangerous sports, you have the option to fit a cup into the pouch area for that added protection.
For those days when you want to be a big kid or (and most likely) you’ve run out of clean underwear, themed underwear can offer you that treasured reminiscence you’ve been craving. But be aware that if you’re stripping off for the first time in front of your significant other, that they might be a little surprised and well, perhaps put off by the cartoon boxers. It could potentially kill the mood.
My personal opinion on the matter? They’re fun, sure, but if you don’t know your partner that well, I would save the funky pants for another occasion. And, in general, unless you’ve been bought them as a present or you just needed some last minute underwear, there’s really no need to buy them.
Underwear comes in a range of fabrics from cotton to leather, so what type of fabric feels and looks best?
- Cotton: Your generic, go-to material. Men’s cotton underwear is soft, kind and lets your skin breathe. You’ll probably find your standard underwear is either 100% cotton or a blend. A lot of men’s cotton underwear will have a waistband made of a stretchier material like elastane. Take note that cotton absorbs moisture easily, so it’s probably not an ideal fabric for exercise.
- Polyester: Another one that is usually mixed with other fabrics is polyester. This is a nice, stretchy material that allows for more flexibility. It’s thin and moisture-wicking fabric also means that it makes nice cooling underwear.
- Modal: Modal offers less support than cotton, but it does have a nice soft feel and is great for everyday use.
- Nylon: Nylon looks a little bit like silk and has a smooth feel to it, but it can be less friendly on sensitive skin. However, like polyester, nylon is durable and stretchy. With this in mind, it’s a great gym buddy.
- Silk: Oooh, luxurious silk! When you want to feel all smooth and sexy, a pair of fancy silk boxers is a nice and soft fabric to slip on. For every day? Maybe not so much.
- Antimicrobial Underwear: A type of underwear usually made from particles of silver or a material known as triclosan, which helps to prevent odour and promote hygiene in the lower regions.
Underwear And Body Type
Just like clothes, different styles of underwear will compliment different people. So find out your shape and match it to the right underwear to make sure you feel and look fantastic!
- Description: A slimmer body.
- Problem: Can appear bony if wearing baggier, or shorter material.
- Fix: Trunks. These are less tight and longer than briefs, so you’ll avoid looking like you’re wearing a nappy. They’re not baggy like the boxer either, which means your legs won’t look lost within all that material.
- Description: Guys under 5ft 9.
- Problem: Too much material can swamp your body, making you appear shorter.
- Fix: Briefs don’t have as much material, so you’ll have more flesh on show and won’t be hidden under the excess fabric.
- Description: Guys way over 5ft 9.
- Problem: Too little material can make you seem really, really tall. Like, really tall.
- Fix: Boxer briefs. Give yourself as much material to work with as possible. If you’ve got plenty of leg to spare, you won’t miss it being covered up.
Underwear Style, Colour And Pattern
Just like with clothes; style, colour and pattern are important aspects to think about. Underwear might just seem like something you just shove on beneath your clothes, but it’s much more important than that. Even if you’re not planning on doing a Magic Mike, wearing the right sort of underwear can really affect your mood and outlook on life.
Let’s say you’re wearing an oversized pair of joggers and that white T-shirt with the food stain that won’t come out. How do you feel? Most likely, not great. Now, switch the sweats for a nice fitted shirt, and a pair of jeans, chinos or trousers – which are your favourites. How do you feel? Better?
You may still think that it doesn’t really matter if I’m wearing nice clothes on the outside, no ones seeing what I’m wearing underneath. The thing is, even if it’s not on show, wearing something that you feel good wearing will make you feel happier about yourself, and when you feel happy about yourself, you look good.
It’s as simple as that, and men’s designer underwear can be a good way to inject a bit of something extra. Men’s underwear brands like Calvin Klein focus on style as well as comfort, and their designs are meant to be shown, so grab yourself a bold pair to ensure you stay feeling good as well as looking good.
How to Choose the Right Underwear for Your Body Type
- Update your selection once in a while – if you’re still holding onto a pair of hole-ridden briefs, just bin them. Now.
- Consider what underwear you wear under tight clothes – you don’t want extra, baggy material sticking out from a pair of smart trousers at work.
- Try out different brands and fabrics – different things work for different people.
- Think about shape, fit and fabric, as baggy underwear will do you no favours.
- Don’t wear themed underwear if you’re trying to seduce, just keep it plain and simple.
On That Note
So, having delved into the daunting depths of underwear, it turns out it’s really not as hard as it seems to find a pair that suits you. Again, like anything, comfort should come first. Not everyone will want to wear briefs (no matter how briefly) and not everyone will want to strap a jock strap on, but it’s OK if you do. The underwear that you choose to slip on under that outfit of yours, whether that’s gym joggers or a sharp, tailored suit, you’ll need to be safe in the knowledge that your underwear is going to cater to your specific needs. And remember, if you’re ever tempted to forget the importance of underwear, it’s what underneath that really counts.