The Best Underwear for Men Is Worth Every Penny


 GQ's Favorite:

The It-Doesn't-Feel-Like-Underwear Pick

Tani FreeForm contour trunk

If lightweight underwear is your thing, then these trunks are for you. Tani is in the business of underwear innovation and coming up with new ways to make underwear that feels like you're not wearing underwear. These trunks are crafted out Micro Modal AIR, which, as the name suggests, is an extremely lightweight fiber made from beechwood and mixed with a healthy bit of stretch elastane (13%). The result is underwear that's smoother and silkier than our top pick, but less of an all-purpose workhorse. The semi-synthetic blend is also the reason these trunks don't have any hems at the thighs; the fabric can be cut without fraying, so the leg openings lay flat (flatter than any other pair on this list).

>$50, buy it now at Tani

 

 

 

 

Calvin Klein modern cotton stretch trunk

$30 (for 2), buy now at Amazon

Underwear is the first thing you put on, the last thing you take off, and the one garment that gets closer than any other to your, uh, prized possession. It's for those very reasons that we firmly believe that guys (yes, you) should spend a few extra dollars for top-quality skivvies when re-upping their underwear drawers. To put it in precious cargo terms, going budget on your underwear is like buying a car seat based solely on the lowest price (i.e. don't do that). So break up with whatever shrink-wrapped eight-pack you've been buying, because a proper underwear restock requires the good stuff. We're talking quality fibers that move with you whether you're shifting weight at a standing desk or going beast mode on some kettle bells. We're talking a cut that's both comfortable and flattering, which a trunk is. And we're talking about a design that won't raise an eyebrow in the locker room or when your third date goes really well. The best underwear that covers all those bases comes from the brand that changed the men's underwear game in the first place, Calvin Klein.

 

4 Reasons We Love the Calvin Klein modern cotton stretch trunk

  1. The blend can't be beat:And by that we mean the cotton and elastane mix (95%/5%) that makes these trunks the best underwear for every activity, whether you're going for a run or running a meeting. The generous amount of elastane is stretchy without feeling like you're wearing compression shorts but helps the fabric feel softer than plain old cotton. It also makes the fabric thin enough that thigh hems (where the fabric is folded underneath) doesn't create any noticeable bulk if skinny jeans are your thing.
  2. They're hella comfortable:Calvin Klein's modern cotton stretch trunks come equipped with the softest waistband we've tried. Unlike thinner, coarser bands that can itch or worse, brand your waist with marks at the end of a long day, the band on these trunks sits comfortably on your waist, emphasis on comfortably. They also don't lose elasticity after the first few washes the way cheaper pairs often do. Plus, there's a front pouch for your, uh, pouch that's roomy without making you look a Magic Mikeextra.
  3. They stay up:There's a good reason we're fans of trunks over all other forms of skivvies: they're the best at doing their job. Briefs have a tendency to ride up in the back, turning you into "guy who picks wedgies" at the office. Boxer briefs take up way too much real estate. And boxers... just don't wear boxers. But trunks—basically boxer briefs with abbreviated legs—are the men's underwear happy medium that don't move around just because you do. Thanks to the aforementioned waistband and an inseam that hits where it should (that would be upper-mid-thigh), Calvin Klein's modern cotton stretch trunks just stay put.
  4. They flatter every guy's body:The history of men's underwear can be split into two distinct timelines: before and after Calvin Klein. The American designer's foray into men's undergarments turned them from something guys had to wear to something they wanted to wear (and okay, yes, still had to) and maybe even wanted to show off. Plenty of it had to do with those ads, but most of the change happened because Klein and Co. started cutting them way guys wanted to wear their underwear (read: not at their belly button). Cue the now-standard-issue below-the-navel stance, the wider waistbands (and yes, the logos on those waistbands), and the idea that underwear should show off your goods, not hide them. These trunks have all those markers of a must-have C.K. pair, but don't require six-pack abs—or even an ab, really—to look good wearing them.

 

Three More Trunks Worth the Money

 

The Good-For-Making-Gains Pick

Charlie by Matthew Zink classic trunk

Matthew Zink makes underwear and swimwear that's made for showing off. That might be the reason we recommend wearing Charlie trunks to the place where summer bodies get made: the gym. Because they sit lower on your hips, come with a thinner waistband, and have a shorter leg than the others in our roundup, these trunks are actually the best at keeping your junk in place when the rest of your body is moving all over the place. So they won't ride up during spin class or get stuck back there when you're doing squats. There's also extra real estate in the front that cradles your manhood closer than a teenage hypebeast with his first pair of Yeezys. Plus, the Italian-cotton-and-elastane blend is a just-right ratio of sturdy (90%) to stretchy (10%) for every kind of workout, whether you're circuit training or just going for a jog.

>$38, buy it now at Charlie

 

 

The Ultimate Rich Guy Pick

Zimmerli Sea Island cotton trunks

Spending over $100 on a single pair of underwear seems insane until you actually hold a pair of Zimmerli trunks in your hands. The Switzerland-based brand uses 100% long staple Sea Island cotton fibers in their pricey skivvies, which are the softest, smoothest, baby's backside-iest cotton fibers on the planet. (Cotton 101: the longer the staple, or single cotton fiber, the softer the cotton) Sea Island cotton is only grown in one area of the Caribbean that has the right climate to sustain the crops. It's the stuff that the British aristocracy couldn't get enough of and if Queen Victoria used it for her handkerchiefs, you can trust some Sea Island cotton trunks are gonna give your family jewels the royal treatment—and they do. They're silky without feeling too delicate, cozy but strong enough to support your junk. They can't take a beating the same way our first choice can—and they do cost a lot of money—but if you have the bank account—or just want to feel like you do once a week—these are worth it.

>$135, buy it now at Barneys

 

 

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