Boxers vs. Briefs
By: Daisy Hemmen
Men’s underwear gets far less attention than women’s. Perhaps this is because there are fewer pieces to worry about. However, the question of boxers vs. briefs lingers on many men’s tongues as it isn’t always clear which type you should wear and when.
If you’ve often wondered if you’re wearing the right underwear for the occasion, the good news is, as long as you’re comfortable, you’re probably just fine. The best underwear for you is that which you feel comfy and confident while wearing.
In this article, we will examine the difference between boxers and briefs and some situations when you’ll likely prefer wearing one instead of the other.
Get To Know Men’s Underwear
So, what’s the difference between boxer briefs, boxers and briefs? Let’s take a quick look at what makes a pair of underwear one or the other (or neither):
- Boxers – These are your comfy, loose-fitting undies that fit like your favorite pair of shorts. They can be cotton, polyester, or another material. A lot of men prefer the classic boxers because they provide more coverage.
- Briefs – Briefs are tight-fitting and add extra support. They’re built like bikini bottoms, so they don’t cover your thighs.
- Boxer briefs – As the name implies, these are a combo of the tight, stretchy fit of a brief and the thigh coverage of boxers.
Is It Better to Wear Boxers or Briefs?
Whether you prefer wearing boxers or tighter underwear, ultimately, the choice is a matter of personal preference. There are a few things to consider when deciding which type of underwear is best for you, such as:
- Comfort – The number one thing you should be concerned with when deciding which underwear you should put on each day is comfort. If your thighs chafe after a long day, or you’re constantly readjusting yourself, then you’re probably not wearing the right underwear.
- Functionality – Your underwear should offer the support you need. When you’re lounging around at home, you don’t need to worry about bouncing. But at the gym, you want everything to be held snugly in place. When you live an active lifestyle, wearing tight fitting underwear isn't always the answer. One way you can get the support you need is by choosing underwear with a jockstrap.
- Durability – We get it—underwear can be pricey. You want high-quality pairs made from breathable, sustainable underwear materials that last for a long time.
- Price – It might be tempting to buy the cheapest pack of underwear on the shelf, but those aren’t going to meet your needs for comfort and durability. It’s wise to spend a little more for quality that won’t fall apart after a few wears. But you don’t have to break the bank either. Other underwear makers design and create quality pieces that are just as durable as designer underwear brands.
When Should You Wear Boxers?
Boxers evoke casual comfort. They’re the ultimate choice for lounging around the house on a lazy Saturday morning with a cup of coffee. To keep it simple, the situations that call for boxers should also be laid-back and comfy. Boxers pair best with:
- Loose jeans
- Comfy sweatpants
- Longer shorts
Just be sure to keep in mind that boxers don’t offer any support. They aren’t a wise choice for working out. However, boxer briefs are perfect for pairing with your favorite workout gear. You’ll get the support of briefs and avoid any uncomfortable bouncing when you run or jump. The thigh-covering length that distinguishes them from regular briefs helps keep them in place when you move.
Boxer briefs will also prevent chafing between your legs. They’re often made from moisture-wicking materials that help keep you dry and comfortable, even during the most intense workouts.
When Are Briefs a Better Choice?
Briefs shine when you need a smooth silhouette under your clothing. Choose briefs when you’re wearing fitted clothing, such as:
- Straight-legged pants
- Tailored suits
- Slim-fitting shorts
The extra support will keep everything comfortably in place, and the minimal fabric will prevent awkward bunching around your thighs.
True or False: Does Your Underwear Selection Affect Sperm Production?
A Harvard study caused quite a stir among those who prefer the support of briefs and boxer briefs when it claimed that men who frequently wear tight underwear experience lower sperm counts and poorer quality sperm.1 While some tight-fitting underwear preferring men in this study did have lower sperm concentration, there were several problems with the study, including:
- Men self-reported the type of underwear they wore
- Those included in the study were already seeking fertility treatment
- BMI and age also impacted sperm counts
- Testing was only conducted in the morning, not accounting for hormonal swings
Therefore, while the underwear choice of some men might impact sperm counts, the general consensus is that you can safely wear your favorite briefs without detriment to your fertility.
Change when necessary
The answer to this men’s underwear debate is to choose whichever you’re most comfortable wearing. Whether they’re compression shorts, boxer briefs, or even tighty whities, what’s just as important as underwear style is knowing how often to replace underwear and how to wash underwear. Wearing used underwear exposes your genitals to microbes and other bacteria that fester on the underwear and may even cause infection.
Boody Eco Wear: The Best In Comfort and Sustainability
For you, the man who wants comfortable underwear for all occasions, a mixture of boxers (like bamboo boxer briefs) and briefs in your drawer is ideal. You’ll have the best fit for work, relaxation, and the gym. If you need to overhaul your collection, we have both boxers and briefs in our collection.
As a bonus, when you buy your underwear from Boody Eco Wear, you’ll receive extremely comfortable clothing that’s better for the environment. We think you’ll love our soft, simple design and the durability of our products. Check out our men’s bamboo underwear today and get ready for a more comfortable tomorrow.
About the Author:
Daisy Hemmen is a San Diego State University Fowler College of Business alumni. Based in Encinitas, California, Daisy is a part of the marketing team at Boody North America. She is passionate about learning the ins and outs of living a happy and healthy lifestyle that benefits both people and the planet, and enjoys sharing her bountiful findings with the community.
- Human Reproduction. Type of Underwear Worn and Markers of Testicular Function Among Men Attending a Fertility Center. https://academic.oup.com/humrep/article/33/9/1749/5066758
- Bissell Centre, "5 Reasons Why EVERYONE Needs Clean Underwear," Bissell, Accessed November 11, 2021, https://bissellcentre.org/blog/2019/07/16/5-reasons-why-everyone-needs-clean-underwear/c
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What is Organic Cotton?
By: Heather Bien We’re all trying to be better stewards of Mother Earth. From recycling to upcycling and eating conscientiously to dressing mindfully, our choices affect the planet. So choosing organic cotton clothing seems like an easy decision, right? Not so fast! As with all sustainable choices, it’s important to take a moment to learn a bit more about why organic cotton might win over conventional cotton—and what makes these two materials different in the first place. Read on if you’re interested in learning about organic cotton and whether it’s the best choice for you and the environment. Conventional cotton Before we get into debating modern cotton farming techniques, let’s get familiar with the plant we’re talking about: cotton. It’s soft, durable, and probably on your body right now. But what else do you really know about cotton? Here are the basics: Cotton comes from the cotton plant – The cotton plant is a warm-season woody perennial shrub from the genus Gossypium and the family Malvaceae. Cotton fabric is made from the plant’s fibrous seed-hair (which is also called a cotton boll). Cotton is one of the top agricultural crops – Traditional cotton is the most widespread and profitable non-food crop in the world. Although the plant is capable of growing in any warm-weather climate, India and China are now the top producers of cotton globally. Cotton is thirsty – A normal cotton plant requires 10 gallons of water to reach peak potential. That doesn’t sound so bad, but multiplying it outward, that means it takes about 5,000 gallons of water to produce just 2.2 pounds of cotton fabric. Pests think it’s delicious – Not only is cotton thirsty, but it’s prone to pest infestations from bollworms, weevils, aphids, stink bugs, thrips, and spider mites. In order to combat these common pests, conventional cotton is routinely sprayed with a veritable salad-dressing of pesticides, many of which can remain in the soil and water supply for years afterward. Cotton harvesting requires defoliation – In order to quickly and efficiently harvest cotton, many commercial growers use chemical defoliants to strip the leaves from the cotton plant prior to harvesting the bolls. Like pesticides, these chemicals remain in the environment and on the cotton itself. Is organic cotton better? All of those cotton factoids point pretty compellingly to buying and wearing organic cotton fabric. But first, it’s important to understand what sets this organic alternative apart. Why exactly is “organic” cotton anyway? You might associate the word organic with your healthy fruits and veggies, but it’s not always clear what this term means when it comes to cotton. For many years, there was not a standard definition, but today, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) require that any cotton product labeled “organic” meet the following criteria: Made with fibers from USDA-certified organic crops Third-party certified (ie., through the Global Organic Textile Standard) under the National Organic Program standards Has a specific percentage of organic material (depending on the crop) But this definition is a little circular, so we need also to define USDA-certified organic crops. According to the USDA, organic crop standards are defined as follows: Land must have had no prohibited substances applied to it for at least three years before the harvest of an organic crop. Soil fertility and crop nutrients will be managed through tillage and cultivation practices, crop rotations, and cover crops. These can be supplemented with animal and crop waste materials and allowed synthetic materials. Crop pests, weeds, and diseases will be controlled primarily through management practices, including physical, mechanical, and biological controls. When these practices are not sufficient, a biological, botanical, or synthetic substance approved for use on the National List may be used. Operations must use organic seeds and other planting stock when available. The use of genetic engineering, ionizing radiation, and sewage sludge is prohibited. What is organic cotton? In short, it’s cotton that is farmed according to these practices and certified organic by the USDA. Why should you choose organic cotton? With fewer pesticides, fewer synthetic chemicals, and more thoughtful cultivation practices, organic cotton can certainly offer a more environmentally friendly choice when compared to regular cotton. Is organic cotton sustainable? Here are a few other reasons why organic cotton can be a better alternative for you and the earth: It’s better for our water resources – According to an analysis by the Textile Exchange, producing an organic cotton T-shirt requires 1,982 fewer gallons of water compared to a regular cotton T-shirt. Because organic cotton uses less chemicals, its production also releases fewer toxins into our aquatic ecosystems. It’s good for the soil (and our carbon footprint) – According to the Soil Association, the more natural cultivation practices and fewer pesticides used by organic cotton farmers can support healthier soil. That soil, in turn, can absorb more carbon from our atmosphere and help keep the planet healthy. It encourages biodiversity – Multiple studies have shown that organic farming practices can encourage more diversity among the animal species of our planet. Sustainability is sometimes in the eye of the beholder. But when it comes to plant-derived textiles, the ones which help us create a healthier world are always a better alternative. Explore the benefits of bamboo with Boody Whether you choose to purchase conventional or organic cotton clothing, the fact that you are shopping mindfully for yourself is a win for the environment. At Boody, we believe in bringing you quality, comfy, sustainable clothing basics that keep you feeling good about yourself and your personal impact on Mother Earth. From our sleepwear to our loungewear, women’s bamboo shirts to our underwear, sustainable and ethical are our touchstones. Our clothing is made of bamboo viscose, requiring less water than cotton while putting precious oxygen back into the environment. That just feels good, doesn’t it? Explore the bamboo benefits today, with Boody. Sources: Britannica. Cotton. https://www.britannica.com/topic/cotton-fibre-and-plant Cotton. The Story of Cotton - Where Cotton Grows. https://www.cotton.org/pubs/cottoncounts/story/where.cfm World Wildlife Federation. Cotton. https://www.worldwildlife.org/industries/cotton Textile Exchange. Quick Guide to Organic Cotton. https://textileexchange.org/quick-guide-to-organic-cotton Soil Association. What is organic cotton? https://www.soilassociation.org/take-action/organic-living/fashion-textiles/organic-cotton/ USDA. Conservation and Biological Diversity in Organic Production. https://www.usda.gov/media/blog/2016/02/29/conservation-and-biological-diversity-organic-production About the Author: Heather Bien is a copywriter and writer based in Washington, DC. She works with retail, ecommerce, and creative brands on their website copy and digital presence, and her freelance writing has appeared on MyDomaine, Apartment Therapy, The Everygirl, and more. When she's not with laptop and coffee in hand, you'll find her planning her next weekend getaway, working on her budding green thumb, or scouting for her next great vintage find.