Are you the type of guy who wears tighty-whities every day? If so, this article on men’s underwear types is for you. Today’s men can choose from various men’s underwear types, and plenty of different options are available that offer style and comfort.
What’s the best type of men’s underwear? We’ll cover a wide range of men’s underwear types, from boxers to briefs, and help you choose the right fit, material, and style that matches your lifestyle.
We’ll start the ultimate men’s underwear guide by covering the different men’s underwear types.
Types of Underwear
Many men go their entire life wearing the same type of underwear. While it’s OK to stick to your favourite underwear, there are other options available.
Some underwear types work better for specific situations. For example, while boxer briefs are comfortable for lounging around, they don’t offer much support during periods of high activity.
The extra material makes boxer shorts difficult to wear with tight pants, and the boxers can bunch or show through your pants.
If you like a comfortable pair of underwear, it’s hard to compete with boxer shorts. This classic underwear style is loose-fitting along the leg while snug across the waistline.
The style gets its name due to its appearance. Like a boxer in the ring, the shorts are normally loose fit and allow maximum air circulation throughout the covered areas. Boxers tend to be longer than most other underwear and reach to the top of the thigh.
Check out a range of boxer shorts at Hawes and Curtis
Briefs include underwear like the traditional cotton tighty-whities to stylish briefs. Today, you can find briefs made from comfortable materials like modals that also look great compared to traditional white briefs.
Briefs are excellent at securing your privates with a minimal amount of material. They curve around the thigh and prevent fabric bunching, making them great for men with bigger thighs.
Modern briefs are stylish, and many male models or muscular men choose this style.
Check out a selection of briefs at Selfridges
The boxer brief is an alternative boxer style that uses stretch fabric. The style is like a boxer but offers a fitted feel around your legs and rear. Boxer briefs sit on the hips so you can show off the designer name brand on the waistband.
Boxer briefs are a popular choice for men who want a snug fit but like ample coverage. The snugness of the brief makes boxer briefs easy to wear with skinny jeans or tight pants, and you won’t have to worry about the brief bunching under your jeans.
The tightness of the brief also makes them ideal for men at work or exercising.
Check out a range of boxer briefs at Harvey Nichols
Trunks are an evolution of the boxer brief; this underwear type combines the snugness of a brief with a shorter leg style. If you’re looking for comfortable underwear that feels great in almost any clothing, you should add a few pairs of trunks to your wardrobe.
In front, trunks feature a pouch to hold your privates snugly. The leg of the underwear is shorter than boxer briefs meaning there is less fabric to bunch under your pants. Meanwhile, the waistband of the trunk sits lower than your hips.
While stylish and comfortable, the snugness of trunks sometimes makes them non-breathable. You’ll want to buy trunks that use breathable fabrics if you plan on going to the gym or have a hard day’s work ahead of you to avoid excessive sweat and odours.
Check out these Trunks from Tommy Hilfiger
Jockstraps are a functional type of underwear that are popular with athletes. It’s uncommon for men to wear a jockstrap as their daily underwear.
A jockstrap consists of a tight frontal protection area and an elastic waistband. On the rear, you’ll find additional straps that wrap around your legs for support. The pouch also offers a place to install a protective cup for high-impact sports.
Unless you enjoy going semi-commando, most men don’t wear jock straps daily and instead use them for sports or other activities. But if you like the feeling of freedom, feel free to enjoy wearing a jock strap.
Designed for cooler temperatures, long johns are undergarments designed to protect you from cold weather. Long johns are available in a full-length body style or a two-piece top and bottom set.
Most long john designs offer a snug fit since you wear them under your other clothing. Today, you’ll find modern-designed long johns that feature excellent breathability, style, and comfort compared to older cotton or wool styles.
When shopping for long johns or thermal underwear, you’ll want to choose the right product for the job. Thinner long johns can be ideal for daily use, while long johns designed for extreme skiing may overheat you while sitting around during the day.
Stylish and sexy, the bikini brief features minimal covering yet protects the most important body parts. Even if you don’t have a perfect six-pack, you can enjoy the breathability, style, and comfort of a bikini brief.
Similar to a woman’s bikini bottom, the biking brief features full coverage in the front with minimal leg coverage. They have a low-cut waist and narrow sides. Most men’s bikini briefs have full coverage on the rear, but g-string style briefs are also available.
The bikini brief is a great pair of underwear for going to the gym or demanding jobs. It’s also a popular swimsuit option for many parts of the world. While many men might be too shy to wear a bikini in public, we encourage any man to try this comfortable and stylish type of underwear.
Style is only half the equation when it comes to men’s underwear. Material types are equally important when choosing the best type of men’s underwear for your body.
Cotton is the most common and affordable underwear material, and it offers a good balance of comfort, breathability, and style. Cotton underwear is good for men with all types of job activity levels. They work great in most environments and are a good option for daily wear.
Cotton is easy to produce and is often the cheapest underwear option. This is great if you are on a budget, but cheaper cotton underwear tends to fall apart quicker than other high-quality materials.
On the downside, cotton underwear is prone to moisture and often causes chafing on your legs.
A step up from cotton underwear, Modal is a newer fabric popular for men’s underwear. This natural fabric is composed of tree cellulose fibre. Also known as micro modals, these fibres are incredibly breathable and offer a soft and smooth feel.
The combination of breathability and comfort makes Modal one of the best fabrics for men’s underwear. The softness of these underwear makes micro modal ideal for men engaging in low activity or lounging around.
The softness of the fabric gives you minimal support. If you need added support, you’ll want to avoid wearing modal underwear during sports or excessive activities.
Nylon is a synthetic fabric often used for men’s underwear. You’ll find nylon underwear can stretch while retaining its original shape, and the material is also lightweight and moisture-wicking.
On its own, nylon is too light to last as underwear. Instead, nylon is blended with a variety of other fabrics. The combination of fabrics gives nylon its added comfort and versatility.
While nylon offers excellent moisture-wicking potential, they are not as breathable as other underwear materials. This makes them a bad choice for anyone living in warmer climates.
Silk has been a popular underwear material for ages. It features a smooth and seductive feel and a great look. Silk also has natural moisture-wicking properties.
Most silk underwear is loose-fitting and designed for lounging, sleeping, or relaxing. Silk underwear is also one of the most popular options for intimate occasions.
Unfortunately, silk underwear is not a good option for daily wear. Silk is delicate and won’t stand up to daily use. It’s also difficult to clean, and you can ruin the underwear if you don’t follow the cleaning instructions perfectly.
Silk underwear is also more expensive than other materials.
Much more comfortable than traditional wool, many manufacturers use merino wool in their thermal underwear lines.
Merino wool is soft, wicks moisture, and is a great option for cold conditions. These features make merino wool ideal for cold outdoor activities with minimal strenuous activity.
Unfortunately, merino wool is not durable, and you should avoid it if you have an active lifestyle.
Avoid These Men’s Underwear Materials
Not all underwear material is equal. Some materials are uncomfortable and painful to wear.
Polyester is a common underwear material, but you should avoid it. It offers good moisture-wicking and mobility. Unfortunately, polyester bonds with odors and bacteria. This makes polyester one of the least healthy underwear options.
Elastane is great when combined with other materials. But you should avoid 100% elastane underwear. This type of underwear has minimal durability. Many men also experience chafing and irritated skin from 100% elastane underwear.
You should also avoid underwear made from polyamide. This fabric is not durable and has poor breathability. It’s also prone to bacteria and fungi growth.
Choosing Underwear for You
Now that you better understand the types of men’s underwear, it’s time to choose the best style and material for you. Even if you’ve used boxers your entire life, one of the other styles might be a better fit.
Where are you Wearing the Underwear?
Some underwear works better under certain conditions. Your workday underwear should correspond to how much activity you do, and they also need to be comfortable for the whole day.
Are you headed out for a date and wearing skinny jeans? You’ll need a pair of underwear that form fit and don’t bunch under your pants.
Meanwhile, you can relax in a comfy pair of cotton boxers if you spend the night at home instead.
What Types of Activities Will You Perform?
You’ll also want to consider the types of activities you’ll perform while wearing the underwear.
Strenuous activities require comfort and breathability. You’ll also want durable underwear that can last if you have a tough job.
You’ll need warmth and breathability during outdoor or winter activities. Moisture wicking also helps if you sweat as your body temperature heats up during cold activities.
If you’re going to the gym, underwear with minimal fabric gives you excellent mobility and ultimate breathability, making the jock strap a good choice for your workout or a football match.
Boxer briefs and trunks offer the best of both worlds, and you can wear them for almost any activity.
Your Body Shape and Size Can Affect Comfort
Everyone is different, and certain underwear styles work better with certain body shapes.
Men with large thighs should avoid boxers with tight and long legs. This restricts the thigh and can cause discomfort and chafing.
Some underwear sits higher on the waistband than others, and the boxer brief sits high and looks great on taller men or men trying to hide belly fat. Meanwhile, low-waist underwear looks better on shorter men or men with a six-pack.
Does Fashion Matter to You?
Even though you’re underwear is covered most of the day, style matters to many men. If you want to look good in your underwear, you’ll want to choose an underwear style that compliments your body type.
Is the Price Right?
Unfortunately, everyone can’t afford designer underwear. Still, investing in durable underwear can save you money as well. While you can buy cheap underwear, premium brands use better materials and last longer. You may save yourself money by buying higher quality products since you won’t have to replace them as often.
Men’s Underwear Types, Ultimate Guide Summary
Which types of men’s underwear are your favourite? Are you excited to try a new style or material? Hopefully, this ultimate guide to men’s underwear helps you find the best underwear type for your body and activity level.
We encourage you to have a variety of men’s underwear in your wardrobe, ensuring you always have the right material and style for your daily activities.