Different Underwear Types for Men
Nowadays, there are lots of choices available.
Whether you’re lacking comfort, support, or style from your underwear, or if your current go-to choice isn’t getting the job done, you might be wondering what other options are out there for men.
Or, perhaps you’re not unhappy with what you’ve currently got but just looking to mix it up a bit and add some variety.
Either way, there are quite a few different underwear types available for men today.
And with a good understanding of your underwear options and how to utilize them to their best effect, you can enjoy more comfort, quality, and focus in your everyday life.
Here, we’ll go over the 7 main underwear types for men.
Underwear Type #1: Briefs
Briefs are a classic men’s underwear style known for offering plenty of support and fitting well under clothing.
The design of briefs is cut to surround the pelvic area and fit snugly to the body.
There's no extension of fabric to the legs like with boxers or boxer briefs, which allows for greater mobility and cuts down on fabric rolling and bunching.
Some of our favorite briefs are the Gregg Homme Room-Max Briefs.
Shop at HisRoom: Gregg Homme Room-Max Briefs
The snug support offered by briefs makes them a great choice for athletic training and competition, anywhere from low to high-grade activity. However, many men also just prefer the fit and feel of briefs in their everyday wear.
Additionally, you’ll find that there are quite a few variations available for briefs to meet different needs and situations.
For example, low-rise briefs sit on your hips slightly below the waistline. Some men prefer this style to wear with a particular form-fitting style of pants or simply as a personal preference.
Underwear Type #2: Bikini
Bikini underwear, also referred to as bikini briefs, is a skimpier version of the traditional men’s brief option.
It has a similar fit that surrounds the pelvic area but is open on the hips. Typically, it’s just the waistband across the hip, connecting the front and back fabric.
Some of our favorite bikini briefs are the Jack Adams Bikini Briefs.
Available on Amazon: Jack Adams Bikini Briefs
Because of this design, bikini briefs aren’t seen as providing the same level of support that briefs do.
However, they do supply adequate support to your anatomy for everyday wear and low-grade activity.
Bikinis often have a supportive pouch in front for your package that can also lift and accentuate, whereas briefs tend to have more of a concealing nature.
The back of the bikini often looks similar to that of briefs, however, some styles will opt for a slimmer cut that trends closer to a thong.
Apart from fabric type, most of the variety in bikini briefs is found in the waistband.
For example, some bikini styles have a mere string connecting the front and back fabric, whereas others have a fuller elastic band.
Underwear Type #3: Boxers
Considered the most relaxed fit of men’s underwear options, boxers have a loose-fitting design similar to that of a pair of shorts.
The only form-fitting part of boxers is their elastic waistband. The rest of the fabric (typically a light fabric like cotton) hangs loosely off the waistband and extends to around mid-thigh.
A great choice for boxers are the Zimmerli Boxer Shorts.
Shop at HisRoom: Zimmerli Boxer Shorts
Because of their loose-fitting design, boxers have a tendency to roll and bunch in the legs when worn under other garments.
For this reason, they’ve largely been replaced in popularity by boxer briefs that offer more form.
While boxers are generally not as popular as they once were, they still have a place and use in the underwear drawer.
Some men still prefer the relaxed fit in their everyday wear and others find them to be a comfortable lounge option.
Underwear Type #4: Boxer Briefs
Currently the most widely popular underwear among men, boxer briefs have become the standard go-to for everyday wear.
As you can tell from the name, boxer briefs are a hybrid between boxers and briefs.
They borrow the length and cut of boxers and combine it with the snug fit of briefs.
Some of our favorite boxer briefs are the Tommy John Second Skin Boxer Briefs.
Shop at Tommy John: Tommy John Second Skin Boxer Briefs
The more form-fitting design helps boxer briefs fit better under clothing and offer more support when compared to the loose fit of boxers.
And many men prefer the longer shorts-like cut of boxers compared to the short and tight cut of briefs.
Boxer briefs are a versatile underwear option that can be worn for everyday wear and low-grade activity and come in a wide variety of fabrics and styles.
Underwear Type #5: Trunks
Continuing to grow in popularity, trunks are a variation of the already hybrid boxer briefs.
In essence, trunks have a shorter leg length than boxer briefs but remain slightly longer than the standard brief cut. This gives trunks a sort of square-ish (yet stylish) appearance.
Some of our favorite trunks are the David Archy MicroModal Lightweight Trunks.
Shop at David Archy: David Archy MicroModal Lightweight Trunks
In terms of feel and function, trunks are probably closer in resemblance to briefs than boxer briefs.
They have the same firm support and mostly free up the entire thigh from fabric, save for an inch or two. However, when compared to briefs, trunks have a more modern look that’s closer to boxer briefs.
When you hear the name trunks you may associate it more with swimwear than underwear, as this is where the trunks design originated.
With the continued rise in popularity of boxer briefs, the trunks design has jumped on the bandwagon and now enjoys lots of variety and use as an underwear option.
Underwear Type #6: Thong
Thong underwear is a great option that minimizes fabric and fits great under clothing.
Designed to sit on your waist and support your anatomy with only minimal fabric running between your glutes, thongs are a comfortable all-day wear option for many scenarios.
One of our favorite thongs is the Obviously PrimeMan Thong.
Available on Amazon: Obviously Primeman Thong
With most other underwear options (boxers, briefs, boxer briefs, etc.) you’re going to experience some form of bunching, bulking, twisting, or riding up throughout the day as you’re mobile.
The design of a thong, however, eliminates all this extra fabric without sacrificing support or comfort.
When it comes to men’s thongs, there is a wide variety of styles and designs available today.
For example, if you’re looking for an extra skimpy option, a g-string takes it down the absolute bare minimum.
And the choice of fabric often allows you to adjust the level of support you’ll receive.
Underwear Type #7: Jockstrap
Initially designed for wear during athletic activities, jockstraps provide targeted pouch support with a secure stay-in-place design.
This design is similar in nature to briefs in that it surrounds the pelvic area, however, fabric is limited solely to the front pouch, leaving the rest open.
So, while the waistband and bottom hem rest where they would with briefs, there is not any connecting fabric between them.
One of our favorite jockstraps is the Agacio Jockstrap.
Shop at HisRoom: Agacio Jockstrap
The jockstrap’s cheeky open back design makes it the most breathable option of all underwear types.
This breathability, paired with the great support, is what makes the jockstrap a top choice for athletics.
Beyond training, competing, and other activity, jockstraps have evolved to enjoy wider application.
Nowadays, jockstraps come in a variety of designs and fabrics that prioritize comfort, style, and sexiness.
The jockstrap’s revealing backside and lifting pouch support can be a great way to spice up your look and show off your assets.
Now that you know all your different choices when it comes to underwear, you'll want to know how to take care of the pairs you have. Learn the best care practices for your underwear.