Brief Talk: Comforts Sake Perfecting the fit of Men’s Underwear
Salvatore and UnderwearDude are going to discuss key ingredients to comfortable undies!
Commando is an option that plenty of men go with nowadays. I personally feel so sexy in underwear that I only go commando when in the shower. That makes the need for comfortable fitting undies a premier need in my life. I don’t want to pay over $20 for something that doesn’t fit well. I want to experience the comfort I’ve grown to love in the hundreds of pairs of great undies that I’ve purchased over the years day in and day out. That comes with an understanding of what to look for in a brief.
What do you consider the top 3 or 4 categories to look for when selecting comfortable underwear?
I can’t imagine going commando either. I’m so used to wearing underwear all my life, it just feels plain weird to go without. You also lose a great way to express yourself. But on the question at hand.
Sex appeal can matter greatly, in my opinion. I feel like there are quite a few pairs that are meant to look great but aren’t up to the task to be worn all day, at least without being annoying. So if a pair looks like it would be found on a stripper, I keep a note in the back of my mind that I have to remember that I’m probably spending a lot for money for something I won’t wear often. I’ve got some fantastically fun and sexy pairs that just stay in the back of the drawer because of how ill suited they are for daily wear.
I’m pretty flexible when it comes to material, waistband thickness, etc. Unless its got like mesh lace or a pouch that won’t fit I don’t have any real big preferences when it comes to comfort.
Specific to bikinis when it comes to comfort, I pay close attention to the size of the backs. I don’t really have much of a rear end, that can’t keep the smaller backs that come on some bikinis in place. If I wanted a wedgie, I’d just wear a thong! So instead I look for pairs with a fuller back, despite the lack in sex appeal.
I’ve noticed that some of the major labels have increased their efforts, or at least the advertising thereof, of producing more comfortable pairs.
Do you think that a truly comfortable pair can only come from a pricy brand?
Great question! I think the first thing we have to delineate is the definition of an expensive brand. I used to think $10 a pair was expensive. Then it went to $20 and then $30. For me, the $30 a pair category is too much to pay for a pair of underwear. Thank goodness that brands put their designs on sale! Others may be at the $10 a pair price point. At any rate, I would unequivocally state that you get what you pay for.
I have enjoyed some of the pricier brands of men’s underwear over the years. I usually bought them through a discount retailer on or on closeout as a new line emerged for release. Funny this is—I keep finding more and more the perfect fit. For instance, Cut-2-Fit, a UK brand that custom makes undies, makes your pants (British for underwear) according to your exact measurements and desires for cuts and fabrics. You can’t go wrong with this. Their underwear will run you about $20 USD per pair. This isn’t bad considering they do a custom design (complete with drawings) and have your exact measurements (waist, penis, scrotum, and legs). You can’t go uncomfortable with custom.
I am also enjoying the fact that some of the big names are creating the same great underwear for the economical budget. Andrew Christian recently released the Basic Line. The briefs are only $10 and you get the same greatness of Andrew Christian’s premium lines—anatomical pouch, super soft waistband, and very nice fabrics. Couple that with the brands 25% off (currently running) and you have awesome designer underwear for $7.50. You can’t beat that.
One of my favorite designs goes back to the early 1990s. Hanes made a super soft line of bikini briefs. The pouch was larger than normal. I bought a set of three for $8 when I was 13 or 14. Granted, I do not shop for underwear at Wal-Mart any longer. However, the potential for a great design is always there in non-designer brands.
There are a couple of brands emerging that I encourage everyone to check out. They use super soft modal and have put a lot into the design of their underwear to include multi-way stretch fabric, slimming waistbands, and precision cut leg openings. The two brands I am thinking of are Krakatoa and Big Boys. The best part, both brands are under the $20 price point.
All in all, you can get what you desire if you are willing to shop around. Why settle for average. Go for the best.
You talked a little about seat coverage in your underwear and mentioned how that might diminish sex appeal. Can you tell me more about why you are looking for a full seat? What do full seats do for sex appeal?
My preference for bikinis with a more full-sized back has more to do with my body than my opinions on sex appeal. Smaller backs just don’t tend to fit well for me. I have the opposite of a “Bubble Butt”, which ironically can have similar problems when it comes to the back facing side of underwear. If you’ve got the rear for it, why not wear a pair with a smaller sized back.
Those of us who are well versed in the realm of upscale men’s underwear don’t balk at a $20 per pair price, but not most guys. I recently saw one of the bestselling pairs on amazon (Boxer-briefs, as you might expect) on sale for $15 by a sales site. They mention, “That’s still pricey for a single pair of underwear, but reviewers say it’s worth it.” Note that this isn’t the first time I’ve seen this pair mentioned on this site, always with this caveat. It makes me wonder how different our views must be from the average male.
Do you think that buying better brands, or at least decent ones, will eventually become the norm?
I equate the upper eschelons of men’s underwear brands to how a woman buys a bra. I recently explained this to my wife. It seemed to click to her. She knows that she can’t buy a bra for $10 at discount store and expect to get the same quality as what Victoria’s Secret puts out. She also knows that the best quality comes from high end brands normally sold in upper end department stores or specialty shops (the kind you get measured for before they will sell it to you.
Men’s underwear is the same way. I recently had this discussion with my father-in-law. He couldn’t fathom paying $20 for a single pair of underwear when he can get the exact same thing at Wal-Mart in a package of 3 for $15. The only way I convinced him was to get him in a pair of Obviously trunks with the fully anatomical pouch. It took him all of ten minutes to decide that the price difference is wort hit. He now consults with me before he buys new underwear.
With that said, how do you think we underwear experts can do our part to get men to try out premier lines for the sake of their crown jewels?
I think it’s gotta come gradually. There are a lot of brands, such as Mack Weldon, Tommy John, and Saxx that market themselves towards the average guy. They are all still small brands, but making headway. A few months ago, Mack Weldon sold their millionth pair! I don’t think every guy is going to be adventurous enough to try a skimpy pair, but I’d be totally happy if even the basic boxer brief was a little better. I also think by promoting and buying from brands we can hope to push the big name brands to put out better products. Competition makes for better products, right?
Which smaller brand(s) do you think is or will have the most impact on bringing more comfortable underwear into the mainstream, or at least push the big brands to up their game?
There are two brands on my radar currently that are upping the ante for the everyday guy. Big Boys Pants out of the UK and Krakatoa from the West Coast. Both are using really high end fabrica and elastics to give the normal guy a little something extra to slip into for work , the gym, or anything really.
What I appreciate about both of these companies is that their price points are below the standard luxury brand for the same high quality we’ve come to expect. They make fabulous looking underwear at a reasonable price. In fact, they both have me experimenting with trunks and boxer briefs—something I never thought would be comfortable.
With that, we’ll call this Brief Talk a wrap. Whether you’re looking for something skimpy, full seated, or mesh, comfort plays a big part in everyday wear. Keep coming back to UNB to hear the latest news and information about the male underwear industry and for Comfort’s Sake, buy new underwear regularly!