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The Best New Running Underwear for Women and Men

Updated: Oct 25, 2019

한글판

For those who don’t go commando, these briefs provide that in-between layer to wick sweat away and prevent nasty chafing.

By CHRISTINE BUCHER and CAITLIN GIDDINGS APR 2, 2019


A little secret to running success? A good foundation. And no, we’re not talking about training blocks that build gradually: We’re talking underwear.

According to a Runner’s World State of the American Runner survey in 2016, 61 percent of runners are for going commando, while 39 percent can’t imagine running without some undies underneath. But have those 61 percent actually tried it? Sure, we love everything about the idea of running without underwear—the ease, the breathability, the joyful freedom of springing lightly into motion without excess fabric to hinder our movement. But the sweaty, skin-chafing reality? Ugh. Not always so fancy-free.

Plenty of running shorts have built-in drawers for a reason—not only does down-there moisture feel gross, but it also harbors bacteria. Cotton, as we know, holds moisture, which can breed bacteria that can cause yeast infections and jock itch. Technical fabrics such as wool or those with antimicrobial treatments—like the ones listed below—will disperse sweat from your sensitive parts and minimize chafing with their seamless construction.


How We Selected

Every product here has been thoroughly evaluated and vetted by our team of test editors. We research the market, survey user reviews, speak with product managers, and use our own experience wearing and running in these products to determine the best options. Most models have been tested by our staff, and those that haven’t have been carefully chosen based on their value, technical fabrics, comfort, looks, and ability to wick away sweat and prevent chafing. Here are the best new picks for those times you’d like a little more fabric and support.


Women


Reebok High Waist Seamless Briefs


Reebok

High Waist Seamless Brief 3-Pack

$25.99

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If you like a bit more coverage from your running underclothes, these lightweight, seamless briefs have a higher rise so they’re less likely to slide around or divide your midsection into segments. A breathable blend of polyester and spandex maintains stretch and wicking powers while you run, but they’re soft enough that you might want to change into another pair for all-day wear.


Runderwear Boyshorts

Price: $28

RUNDERWEAR

Runderwear Women's Boyshorts

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In case the name didn’t tip you off, Runderwear makes seamless, chafe-free performance underwear for runners and triathletes. These comfortable, full-coverage boy shorts are made of breathable technical fabric that stays put while you’re in motion.

Arcteryx Phase SL Brief


Arc'teryx Phase SL Brief

$37.42

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Arcteryx, known for its hiking gear, offers a baselayer-type panty great for adventure or multiday runs. The company claims a three-stage wicking process—wick, disperse, dry—but you’ll just feel comfy.


Asics ASX Boy Brief


ASICS Women's ASX Boy Briefs

$45.00

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A super-lightweight nylon and polyester blend keeps these boy shorts breathable and quick-drying. Even the sweatiest runner we know (ok, I’m talking about me) has praised their wicking superpowers. A high waist and more than two-inch inseam provide full coverage that won’t ride up.


Reebok Seamless Boy Shorts


Reebok 3-Pack Seamless Boyshort Panties

$9.99

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These soft, stretchy boy shorts are slightly misleading in name—the waistband is seamless, but the legs have bands to keep them from riding up while you’re running. They’re made of a lightweight nylon and spandex blend that dries quickly and wicks sweat, so you can wear them under anything and feel lighter and freer overall.


Champion Absolute Briefs

Price: $20 for 2


Champion Women's Absolute Brief

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Sometimes cooling touches are both dead simple and high-tech: Exhibit A is the cutouts in this polyester-spandex number. Minimal seaming creates stay-put tailoring.


Men

Under Armor Original Series Boxerjock


Under Armour Original Series Boxerjock

$34.99

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With multiple colors and sizes from small to 4XL, UA has you covered. And supported: Product reviewers report good support, and the polyester fabric doesn’t chafe or hold moisture.


ExOfficio Give-N-Go Brief


ExOfficio Men's Give-N-Go Flyless Brief

$20.00

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On a running vacation? Rinse these gems in your hotel sink and they will be dry tout suite. And even if the farthest you travel from home is on your 10-mile loop, you still get flatlock stitching, anti-odor treatment, moisture-wicking magic, and a functional fly.

Brooks All-In Training Boxer Brief


Brooks All-In Training Boxer Brief

$18.88

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With a 7-inch inseam, these boxer briefs are longer than most pairs, but they have a nice grip that keeps them from going anywhere and chafe-free flatlock seams so the extra fabric won’t rub. A blend of odor-resistant fabric DriLayer fabric, polyester, and spandex keeps you comfortable during workouts or for all-day wear.


Smartwool Sport 150 Brief



SMARTWOOL

Smartwool Merino Sport 150 Boxer Brief

$30.00

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From socks to base layers to briefs, Smartwool is practically synonymous with soft Merino undergarments that keep you warm and cozy without any chafing or scratchiness. These light boxer briefs are soft against your skin while fighting odor and wicking sweat—so you can focus on the mile you’re in—not the underwear you’re in.

New Balance 6" Boxer Brief


NEW BALANCE

New Balance Men's 6" Boxer Brief

$14.87

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Deal alert: These boxer briefs come in a three pack at a great price, so you can stock up and ignore your horrifying mountain of laundry longer. They’re made of lightweight polyester-spandex fabric that wicks sweat and dries quickly. The fit is snug, but the briefs move well with your body without bunching up.

Reebok 6-Pack Performance Boxer Briefs

Price: $33


REEBOK

Reebok Performance Boxer Briefs

$32.99

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That three-pack not enough? Stock up for every day of the week (minus rest day) with this six-pack of polyester-spandex boxer briefs. The fit is snug and supportive so the legs won’t ride up on you—and the fabric is light, breathable, and fast-drying so they don’t feel too hot under shorts.


Mack Weldon Air Knit Boxer Brief


Mack Weldon

AirKnitx Boxer Brief

$28.00

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Best known from its many podcast ads, Mack Weldon makes an online-only line of men’s basics, including socks, undershirts, and underwear. These boxer briefs are made of lightweight, moisture-wicking microfiber that breathes well while you’re in motion, and dries quickly once you’re not. This pair has a 3-inch inseam; check out the 8-inch version if you’d like something with more stay-put leg coverage.

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