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When the air is hot and humidity levels are high, the right pair of underwear will remain virtually undetectable — which is how it should be. The best men's underwear for hot weather is better suited for handling moisture, friction, and heat. Granted, since the vast majority of brands are marketed as "cooling," it can be difficult to tell the gimmicks from the worthwhile options.
What to consider when choosing a pair of underwear
First, you'll need to pinpoint a style, and it seems the age-old boxers versus briefs debate is about more than mere fashion. Science has shown that men who wear looser-fitting underwear have a higher sperm concentration and overall count; this is due to the fact that the scrotum is designed to remain at a distance from the rest of the body in order to retain a cooler temperature.
That doesn't necessarily mean that you should stop wearing briefs and trunks altogether; it just means that, especially in warmer weather, breathable fabrics and cooling qualities are paramount in tighter-fitting styles. Overall, loose boxers will be the coolest but also the most likely to chafe due to excess fabric.
Once you've narrowed down your preferred style, the next biggest factor will be material choice. Bamboo is likely the best natural fabric because it's highly absorbent yet quick-drying and soft. For that reason, it's a good choice for those with skin sensitivities who find cotton too stifling. Fibers like modal and polyamide are close seconds in terms of cooling qualities, and they can be either synthetic, natural, or a mix of the two. Finally, some brands utilize polyester or other entirely-synthetic fabrics, which can help with temperature control so long as they feature mesh or similar ventilating weaves.
When choosing between boxers and briefs, boxers are by far the more cooling option and have a looser fit, which makes them the ideal underwear for hot weather. However, keep in mind that you’re also more likely to experience chafing while wearing boxers. If this is a concern for you, personally, you may find that boxer briefs made from a breathable material are better in hot weather.
What type of underwear is most breathable for men?
Cotton is normally the top of my mind choice for breathable underwear for men. Bamboo is a soft and absorbent natural fabric that shares similar qualities to cotton and functions as a great alternative for those with skin sensitivities.
How we narrowed down the best men’s underwear for hot weather
We conducted independent research and looked over reviewer feedback to determine the best men’s underwear for hot weather. Based on our research, we were able to establish certain criteria to help guide our product selection keeping fabrics-used and other cooling qualities top of mind. We also made it a priority to choose a selection of styles including boxers, briefs, trunks, and even bikinis to accommodate various preferences and styles.
Mínguez-Alarcón, L., Gaskins, A., Chiu, Y., Messerlian, C., Williams, P., & Ford, J. et al. (2018). Type of underwear worn and markers of testicular function among men attending a fertility center. Human Reproduction, 33(9), 1749-1756. https://doi.org/10.1093/humrep/dey259