Boyshorts and Girltrunks 102: Your Queer Underwear Guide

Welcome to Underwear Week, a whole week dedicated to your favorite bum-hugging clothesthings. As we said many moons ago, we feel a lady is at her best when she’s not wearing pants. And while our last adventure around this neck of the woods took us only as far as boyshorts, this time around we’re exploring the vast and many-flavored land of underwear. From edible panties to hoopskirts and history, we’ve got you covered. Just like your underwear.

underwear week

You’re going to see a lot of underpants guides this week catered to specific body types or gender identities: a femme underwear guide, a masculine-of-center underwear guide, a plus-size underwear guide and so forth. This isn’t one of those guides, because my body type is already over-represented in fashion and I don’t have a strong sense of a fashion-relevant gender identity beyond my gender and sexual orientation. I’m just a queer girl who loves makeup and mens boxer-briefs, you know? You won’t find flowers or lace in my underwear drawer, but you’re also unlikely to find anything my butch girlfriend would be caught dead in. Oh and, there’s a lot of underwear in my underwear drawer because I’m obsessed with underwear. In fact, the idea of Underwear Week began when I suggested we do an update of our Boyshorts 101 post from 2009. We’re just all sitting here thinking about your inner thighs, basically.

So, today we’re gonna talk about my favorite style of underwear which falls under the loosely-defined definition of “boyshort” and is extremely popular within the queer-lady population.

I officially transitioned from thongs to boyshorts eight years ago (a sexual orientation switch occurred around the same time, suspiciously) and since then have seen my favorite brands and styles get discontinued again and again, or redesigned to totally suck, probably because of the patriarchy or else because of “how the fashion industry works.” The fact that awesome women’s boyshorts go extinct so quickly is why our initial Boyshorts 101 post has now become almost completely obsolete.

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The Hanes Authentic Core Women’s Boxer-Brief we loved so dearly in the late ’00s are a thing of the past, and the new style doesn’t even cover your entire butt! The Calvin Klein Steel Gripper Trunk has discontinued the button-fly style in favor of it’s enormous penis-sculpting pocket styleUrban Outfitters, which coincidentally I hate now anyway, stopped offering its classic boyshorts with the white waistband and the three buttons in the front.

All of these discontinued models fit into my favorite style of boyshort, which I will refer to as “girltrunks.” Underpants who identify as “boyshorts” run the gamut, especially with respect to coverage, so when I say “girltrunks” I’m referring to “boyshorts” (and sometimes men’s boxer-briefs) that cover your whole entire butt and then some. Here, I made you a graphic to explain the different types of underpants!

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i stole the little blue boxes with white shapes from, except the girltrunks one, which i made myself in photoshop!

As you know, we like to diversify the imagery as much as possible here, but unfortunately underwear vendors prefer to focus on skinny white cis girls exclusively, even when modeling plus-size underthings! So that’s how that is. [Sidenote: Also, whenever searching for imagery of plus-size ladies in their underpants — for a fashion feature, NSFW Sunday or a girl gallery — I find the vast majority of modeled underthings are super-duper-femme and exceptionally lacy. Have you noticed this? I think we need to start shooting our own stock photography or something.]

Let’s begin!

Basic Boyshorts

Lesbians In Underpants-002

photo in upper right hand corner of rashida via (© 2010/2013 Me In My Place™)

The most common style of boyshorts doesn’t, generally, offer full ass-coverage and subsequent freedom from panty-lines. What makes this style different from traditional women’s underpants is the cut — they generally reveal less of the thigh and ass than traditional women’s briefs and have short legs and generally a lower waist. They’re exceptionally flattering and also very sporty/sexy. Sportysexy, if you will.
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1. Cosabella Ribbed Low-Rise Boyshorts ($38), 2. Hanes Women’s Premium Boxer-Briefs (3/$9.99), 3. Free People Boxer Short Pack (3/$55), 4. Calvin Klein Metallic Boyshorts ($12) (not pictured, but also awesome: Calvin Klein Metallic Hipster Briefs) ($12), 5. aerie Printed Boyshort ($7.50), 6. American Apparel Baby Rib Brief ($5 – $14), 7. Splendid Fruit Fusion Boyshort ($26), 8. Dolce & Gabbana 2-Pack of Jersey Briefs ($140), 9. Tommy Hilfiger Women’s Classic Boyshorts ($9), 10. D&G Boyshorts ($29), 11. Jockey Modern Tactel Boyshort Panties ($11)

Plus-Size Boyshorts

We’re gonna have an entire Underwear Week feature dedicated soley to plus-size underthings but I want to be sure that everybody has fun right here, right now, too.

Boyshorts 1026-003 1. Hanes Plus Size Womens Comfortsoft Cotton Stretch Boy Briefs Assorted (3/$8.40), 2. Ruched Cotton Boyshort Panty ($14.50), 3. Avenue Plus Size Cotton Girlshort Panty ($7.90), 4. Seamless Boyshort Panty ($16), 5. Cacique Sassy Cotton Boyshort Panty ($14.50), 6. Elomi Betty Boyshort ($32), 7. Boyshort Brief ($18), 8. Lace Trim Boyshort Panty ($12.50), 9. Dazzler Microfiber Boyshort Panty ($16), 10. Comfort Choice No-Show Boyshort ($12.99), 11. Maidenform Comfort Devotion Shaping Boyshorts ($38), 12. Striped Seamless Boy Short Panty (also in nude or black) ($12.90), 13. Jockey Plus Size Naturals Seamfree Boyleg ($10.50), 14. Ex-Officio Give-n-Go Boycut Brief ($20)


Lesbians In Underpants2

photo in lower left right corner of mary katherine by timothy patrick via liquorinthefront via timothy patrick on flickr, photo in upper left hand corner of jess via (© 2010/2013 Me In My Place™) photo in left hand corner via

If you’re crazy about avoiding pantylines (as I am), then you need a very special kind of boyshort: the kind that is really hard to find. The kind that covers your entire ass and then some, so that if there’s any bunching-up of the underroos, it’ll blend right in to the natural bunching-up that happens in your pants when you move around the world while wearing pants. I’m gonna call this type of underpant the “girltrunk.” If you’re wearing a good pair of girtrunks, nobody will know whether or not you shave your bikini line, and if you trip over a banana on the sidewalk, nobody will see your bits.

In the past, my go-to brands for this style were Hanes and Calvin Klein, but both of those franchises have let me down as of late. Presently, I obtain 75% of my girlshorts from the H&M boys section (size 12-14Y) because they’re completely a men’s style, but spandexy enough to wear under leggings. However, I recognize that 95% of the female population cannot shop the boys section so you’ll be happy to learn that Uniqlo’s seamless boxer-briefs are a popular choice for those seeking masculine style with a more feminine fit. Also, these:


1. Hanro Black Touch Feeling Low-Rise Boyshorts ($49), 2. H&M Boy’s Boxer-Briefs (3/$9.95), 3. Barely there® Flawless Fit® 2-pk. Microfiber Boyshorts ($13.99),  4. Shimera Seamless Boyshorts ($13), 5. Superfit Curves Seamless Boyshorts – $9.49, 6. Calvin Klein Concept Micro Low-Rise Trunk ($30), 7. Uniqlo Seamless Low-Rise Boxer-Briefs ($4.95), 8. Jockey Natural’s Seamfree Boyshorts ($9.45), 9. Under Armour Seamless Boyshorts ($30)



There will be an entire masculine-of-center underthings style guide so I don’t want to encroach on that territory too much, but fuck I love boxer-briefs! When you’re home alone, boxer-briefs basically count as pants. Depending on your between-the-legs situation, you may or may not be looking to avoid a generous penis pocket. I personally eschew boxer-briefs that offer “enhancing” or “sculpting” or even “support,” which means I generally stick to 95%-100% cotton boxer-briefs. Again I tend to loot the boy’s section for these (Fruit of The Loom), but also find the adult American Apparel boxer-brief to fit nicely under baggier jeans and look sexy without a shirt at bedtime. (And especially sexy with ‘Straddle This’ written on them!)

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1. Fruit of the Loom Men’s 2 Pack Active Ringer Boxer Brief ($14), 2. Calvin Klein Stretch 2-Pack Trunk Set ($34),3. American Eagle Outfitters Low-Rise Trunk ($12.50), 4. Puma Volume Boxer-Brief (3/$28), 5. Schiesser Cotton Boxer-Briefs ($60), 6. Hanes Men’s 3 Pack Comfort Stretch Boxer Brief (3/$12.50), 7. Mack Weldon Trunk ($22), 8. 100% Cotton Topman Branded Underwear 3-Pack (3/$30), 9. Emporio Armani Cotton Stretch Cotton Boxer Briefs ($26), 10. American Apparel Baby Rib Boxer Brief ($16)

The #1 reason I sometimes choose men’s underpants over women’s is The Waistband. If I’m wearing loose-fitting jeans that might possibly sag, I specifically select underpants with a prominent logo’ed waistband. (This is the only situation in which I proudly rock a brand name on my body, generally I avoid that because of commercialism and The Man. I don’t know, underwear makes me do crazy things.)


all photos via except the middle photo, which is via


I like my underpants to be fun, and by “fun” I don’t mean “reminiscent of The Secret Garden.” By “fun” I mean:


funny boyshorts-001

1. Polo Ralph Lauren Varsity Stripes Trunk ($32.80),  2. Free People Yarn Dye Boy Short ($38), 3. Topman Striped Three-Pack Underwear (3/$32), 4. Ted Baker Block Stripe Button Front Long Trunk ($23), 5. Oiler & Boiler Nantucket 2 Pack Palm Trees/Stripe Trunk ($36), 6. Diesel Men’s Divine Striped Trunk ($24.99), 7. Joe Boxer Women’s Boy Short Panties – Striped ($2.99), 8. CK One Striped Cotton Stretch Trunk ($14.99), 9. Calvin Klein Underwear ck one Microfiber Printed Low Rise Trunk ($14.99), 10. Uniqlo Men Seamless Low Rise Boxer Briefs ($4.95), 11. Gap Thin Diagonal Striped Boxer-Brief ($12.50)

So Many Patterns & Colors

patterns and colors

1. Bonds Hipster Boyshort Stripe (AU $10.77), 2. Cassis Boyshort ($44), 3. Jack & Jones Herbert 4-Pack Trunks ($50.87), 4. Unisex Printed Baby-Rib Brief ($16), 5. House of Holland Devore Short ($30.52),  6. Jack & Jones Touch Intelligence 3-Pack Trunks ($33.91)  ,7. Gap Ultra-Low Girl Shorts ($14.50), 8. OnGossamer Mesh Boyshort ($14) 9. Pink Ruched Shorty Panty ($10.50)


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1. Pull-In Fashion Retrovieseur Short ($39.99), 2. Sly Clouds Work Hard (with pocket) – ($20), 3. Pringle Arrow Trunks ($16.95), 4. American Eagle Peppers Athletic Trunk ($12.50), 5. I Love Video Games Pixel Pusher ($24.99) [also check out the I Love Girls Ginch Gonch Briefs!], 6. Green Crocadillio Underwear ($14), 7. River Island Three-Pack Moustache Trunks ($25.43), 8. Galaxy’s Greatest Undies in Boyshort (glow-in-the-dark) ($23.99), 9. Ellen Boyshorts ($15), 10. Stonemen Digital Print Ducks Trunk ($42), 11. Enlarge Paul Smith Monster Trunks ($50.87), 12. Adventure Time Rainbow Hotpants ($8.50), 13. “Straddle This” Boxer-Briefs ($16) (that’s my actual ass, btw, I practice what I preach is what I’m saying), 14. Topman Moustache Pattern Three-Pack Underwear (3/$32)

 Okay what are you waiting for, TAKE OFF YOUR PANTS!!!!


Riese is the 37-year-old CEO, CFO and Editor-in-Chief of as well as an award-winning writer, blogger, fictionist, copywriter, video-maker, low-key Jewish power lesbian and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and then headed West. Her work has appeared in nine books including "The Bigger the Better The Tighter The Sweater: 21 Funny Women on Beauty, Body Image & Other Hazards Of Being Female," magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 2798 articles for us.


  1. can underwear week be every week from now on because i am 100000% about all this underwear and finding underwear styles that hide that i do not in fact shave the bikini line

    thank you

    • You bring up a good point. Why should anyone have to shave the bikini area at all? So what if a little hair sticks out? Is society really trying to make us all shave ourselves so that we look like we did when we were 10 down there? The only thing worse is the people who won’t lick a muff if it has hair on it.

  2. I was confused by that last line for a second, wondering why you were asking me to take off my pants when you were talking about pants. then it struck me you probably meant in the american sense.

    I really like the “girltrunks” variety. and since I am petite I can easily get away with wearing boy’s size 12/14 which can be fun cause I can find plenty of avengers and other superhero-themed ones.
    I like seeing these guides,even if most of these are a bit expensive for me.

    • Definitely get confused with the american use of ‘pants’ (I’m an Brit) but it made the article that much more amusing. Bought a pair of ‘Straddle this’ Undies and i must say, they were the most expensive pair of knickers I’ve purchased but by golly, it is worth it.. though they are more like shorts on me…

  3. This! “I’m just a queer girl who loves makeup and mens boxer-briefs, you know? You won’t find flowers or lace in my underwear drawer, but you’re also unlikely to find anything my butch girlfriend would be caught dead in”!!

    Thank you for making sure I will get zero homework done and will spend all the monies on new underwear :D

    Also I am ALL ABOUT the Waistband. No joke. I plan most of my life around the Waistband.

    omg this post

  4. Love this post! FUNDERWEAR FOR EVERYONE. This is my happy week– my lesbians and my underwear at the same time.

    On that note– I totally agree that in the plus sizes, everything seems to femme up to a crazy degree! For some reason the world thinks that larger boobs need more flowery embroidered lace. I cannot explain why that is and the day that there is an androgynous full-bust or plus size lingerie line I will throw ALL the parties.

  5. I seriously talked myself out of buying the Uniqlo seamless low rise boxer briefs last weekend because of reasons (& because I already have 2 underwear drawers). This post may have talked me into purchasing 3 pairs.

    Also this: “I officially transitioned from thongs to boyshorts eight years ago (a sexual orientation switch occurred around the same time, suspiciously)” is exactly what happened to me. Except for the 8 years ago part.

  6. Underwear is literally my favorite article of clothing. I wish it was acceptable to go out in public in just my boxer briefs. And I’m likely to run outside in my underwear than go commando, is that weird?

    In the last few years my under too has transformed into mostly mens underwear, though I do not remember throwing out all my frilly/girly ones it’s like they just disappeared.
    Also I feel like I’m missing out on AE underwear because I mostly avoid AE, AF, Hollister like stores haha. But maybe I just need to because as pretty thin person not all S underwear fit me.

    • i am way more likely to run outside in my underwear than go commando, so if you’re weird than so am i.

      personally i can’t go into or shop at hollister without feeling like i’m ~78 years old and i actually sometimes feel that way about american eagle lately, too? but i just shop AE online since I know my sizes at this point, and the sizes I wear aren’t usually abundant in the brick-and-mortar stores anyhow (small waist/super-long inseam, smaller bra sizes, xxs men’s shirts, etc).

    • Trust me, the AE trunks are worth it. They comprise the majority of my undies. It’s actually not the most irritating store to be in for me. (That would probably be Aeropostale, and their men’s jeans fit me really well, but it’s full of 14 year olds).

  7. I made the switch to wearing boxer briefs exclusively last year. After many many years searching for the perfect underwear my ass finally found a home in boxer briefs. I think I talked about great they were to everyone who would listen for a solid two weeks. Finding the perfect underwear is a big fucking deal. I’ve got pink mesh and lace panties (somewhere), but I feel much sexier in teal and black striped boxer briefs.

  8. This is my favorite post of Underwear Week yet! The original boyshorts post was what first led me to Autostraddle.

    Now, to try and take the plunge to boxer briefs…I am so afraid that I’ll buy them and find out my thighs are too big around.

  9. This is Great!! I love my boxer briefs and my Boi shorts made by FOCX, out of England! It’s been a challenge finding what I like for sure, so thanks for posting some more ideas. Looking forward to the rest of the Underwear Week!!

  10. You guys should def do your own stock photography because those models are plus-size? Seriously? I’d love to see actual plus-size underwear-wearing folks represented!

    My underwear is the most femme part of my wardrobe. This probably has a lot to do with my first partner, who taught me that fancypants are actually waaaay more comfortable than the giant granny-panties my mum thought were appropriate for someone my age at the time (’90s). It’s about 90% boyshorts with “funnypants” prints (insects! penguins! polar bears! yay!).

    My main criteria for choosing undies is that I not have to feel that they are there (soft waistbands) or fish them out of my buttcrack a billion times a day. I generally don’t want to have to think about my underwear beyond, “I am wearing dinosaur undies; it is a good day.”


    I’m so tired of consistently seeing pictures of plus-size women with perfectly airbrushed thighs and flat bellys. There needs to be more variation of curvy!

  12. Great post, I love the underwear guides and really needed the update. Finding underwear that covers my whole butt is the HARDEST.

    However, at the beginning when you said “I have no gender identity…I’m just a queer girl…” doesn’t that seem a bit cis-normative? Like “girl” is your gender identity. To say that you don’t have one would imply that you were agender.

    • That sentence confused me for a second but it says she has no ‘fashion-relevant gender identity beyond [her] gender and sexual orientation’

      which I take to mean although ‘girl’ is her gender identity, she doesn’t care which gender the clothes she buys are made for. Like she doesn’t have a fashion-gender. Maybe?

    • I took it to mean those sub-identities that are an important part of gender presentation–butch, femme, androgynous, boi, stud/AG, etc.

      Like “I ID as female but I don’t subscribe to any of these gender presentations/identities.” That’s why she said fashion-relevant gender identity, which I took to mean gender presentation. Clearly if you cut that quote apart it gets a lot weirder, as many quotes do. But I don’t see how it’s cis-normative? You can be a queer trans girl who doesn’t ID as femme or butch or anything like that either?

  13. Underwear is so confusing for me. There are too many styles and none of them look like they’re supposed to on me. I bought some boyshorts a while back and 1) they make my inner thighs look weird and 2) the leg hole stretches out over the day, leaving me with underwear that fits over my ass but is all loose around my legs when I walk! I walk into an underwear isle and literally start sweating because all the tags on underwear that I bought years ago have worn off and I have no idea what size or cut to get and I can’t take them into the dressing room and WHAT DO I DO so inevitably I panic and go buy a size M package of men’s briefs because there’s only one choice there and the size chart makes sense. Sometimes they come up a little high, but I just roll the top down if that happens.

    Basically what I’m saying is this week should be helpful for me because I have a lot of panicky feelings about underwear and DEAR GOD AUTOSTRADDLE PLEASE HELP

    • i think you should try the american eagle men’s trunks that emily choo and marika attest to above, i’ve not heard any negative reviews of those from anybody. i know what you mean about the legs stretching out which’s why it’s good to get one that’s 5% spandex or more.

  14. So it is basically my life’s quest to find all of the most femme (or at least sort of neutral) girltrunks possible. AS SUCH, I can share my personal experiences. (obvs these ones are not even very femme but what can you do)

    I have tried a couple of the things above:
    1) the Hanes boxer briefs, #2 in the Boyshorts group. I got them because they are more of a “girltrunks” fit but my main problem with them is that the leg openings are too loose. I don’t want to have to adjust whenever I put on skinny jeans/tights/leggings, which is all I wear. But I mean, they are inexpensive, so if you’re into them or maybe if you wear baggier pants / live in a skirts with no tights climate… they’re comfy?

    2) Shimera Seamless Boyshorts: They are 100% stretchy and not in a good way… like they… scrunch up into themselves? Recoil in terror??? and generally the stretch just makes for a lot of inconvenience in plenty of ways unrelated to fit as well. Also the “leg” isn’t long enough for my taste – since I only wanted them for their girltrunks fit and they didn’t quite live up to it.

    Free People looks like it has a lot of good options for my taste (#whysocostly) and I have had luck with Modcloth. Always on the search… I’m definitely looking for recommendations! And this post is making me thing I should restock on underwear. (considering I have such specialized taste… femme high waisted shorts…) I will have to make sure to click from the Autostraddle referral link when appropriate!

    • yeah i don’t care for those hanes ones either, i think that the legs are too loose. i bought some because i thought they were a follow-up to the original, but realized they aren’t because they’re too short and not tight enough. but other people seem to really dig them! i guess it depends on your style. but yeah, that’s why i categorized them as boyshorts rather than girltrunks. i only wear girltrunks.

      i saw so many femme high-waisted shorts while i was out there hunting for underpants! especially at modcloth.

      • I mean, I still got like 3 packs of them because I was like “BOXER BRIEFS… FOR WOMEN??”

        What! Where are the femme high waisted shorts? After all… my life’s quest!

        IN TURN, I can also provide some options for people who are looking for the same thing:

        -Hanky Panky Signature Lace Retro Hotpants
        -Soma Intimates Vanishing Edge Microfiber Boyshort (they have ones with lace or patterns)
        -Bold Hollywood Undies at Modcloth

        so these are the 3 things I have found in my journey. Plus I definitely have to check out Free People stuff.

        • You want high-waisted femme-y underwear? Me too. They’re also called “what my grandmother always wore.” So I shop the same place my grandmother does — Vermont Country Store. Not only do they often have an assortment of high-waisted, femme-y, lacy, girltrunk styles, but also other hard-to-find underthings, like full slips and cotton half-slips. So as long as you’re comfortable wearing what are quite literally granny panties, they’re great everyday undies.

          Just stay away from adjectives like “absorbant” — those ones are just for the actual grannies.

    • Yeah, the older version actually were boxer briefs, that covered your entire ass and didn’t ride up. They didn’t call them boxer briefs, though. I forget what they did call them, but I have about a dozen pairs and will be sad when I have to replace them, because they are super comfortable.

      Then they made them lower-rise (which I like) and shorter, with leg holes that stretch out and ride up (which I definitely do not like), and now they’re called boxer briefs. I don’t get it.

  15. Goodness. I’ll definitely be checking some of those links out extensively. I tried boyshorts a couple of years ago but ran into a serious problem of them rolling up and just ending up being bunchy, clasp-y panties instead, which was no fun. I enjoy plain cotton panties but I’m def willing to explore and maybe fall into (what I feel like is) the wonderful world of girltrunks/boyshorts/briefs, etc.

    And if I could have horizontal stripes from head to toe that would be a very good thing indeed.

  16. Most of my underwear is from Victoria’s Secret because many moons ago I got their credit card and so they keep sending me “Free Panty” coupons even though I only actually buy something like once every other year and who am I to turn down free underwear, y’know?

    My favorite underwear I own though are the American Apparel boyshorts (#6 up there in the boyshort group). I feel like the cut is pretty girly, but the fly is real. I hate women’s versions of men’s styles that have fake flys, it makes me feel cheated.

  17. So, this is the best thing ever. I think I’m going to print this out, laminate it, and just carry it with me. (I go underwear shopping too much.)
    BUT question…in that picture of the Sly Clouds Work Hard…is that guy’s hand down his pants? Am I seeing things?

  18. My girlfriend wears Aeropostale & Mossimo boxer-briefs. I like the look, but I can’t stand the feel of them on my thighs. My favorite undies are the Hanes boyfriend hipsters from Target. They’re only $10 for a pack of 3 & my girl loves them on me.
    They have many more colors in store than what is shown online.

    • Yeah I have this exact set and they are good! I like their boyshort style, too. Both of these also seem way sturdier than my other cheap underwear (I say as if I own anything other than cheap underwear). Hanes, man. They know what they’re doing.

  19. I love the girltrunks icon! It also made me think that the “A” in the Autostraddle logo looks kind of like a very slim-waisted version of it. But maybe this is just the effects of underwear week. I see undergarments…everywhere.

  20. So underwear is one of my favourite things ever. Next to being naked, it’s my favourite outfit.

    Anyway, I recently made up a song about how great fluro undies make me feel. It has multiple verses written about other kinds of undies.

    I’ve been meaning to upload it to YouTube for a while. Maybe I’ll have to do so in honour of undies week on AS. Probably a good plan.

  21. Anyone wanna recommend which of these don’t ride up when you’re wearing them all day? This seems to be a problem with both too loose and too tight boyshort/trunk type underwear (>< can't win) and is the #1 reason why I'm afraid to branch out.

    • i haven’t found a straight-up boyshort that doesn’t bunch up, which’s why i abandoned them a few years back. i think anything you wear as underpants will bunch up to some degree — like i often readjust to make sure everything is smooth every now and then — but i think for me it’s girltrunks that fit tightly around your thighs underneath your ass. Some trunks have elastic at the legs that keeps them in place better. and then even if they do bunch up, like i said, they bunch up where your pants bunch up on your thighs which tends to look much better than bunching up on your ass. i find with boyshorts that are too tight, it looks like your ass is bisected. your ass is a curved thing, legs are straight things, so that’s where the fit is especially important. I’d also recommend going for a girltrunk with a bit of spandex. Also, a thinner fabric (or “seamless” style) helps so even if it does bunch up, it’s not noticeable.

      i don’t know if there’s one particular brand i’d recommend besides uniqlo and the others mentioned above because so much of it has to do with how each brand fits you specifically, and also what kinds of pants you’re wearing. if your pants are baggy then almost any kind of mens boxer-brief will do, if they’re tighter than stick to the girltrunks specifically.

  22. This is great!! So can next week be SWIMSUITS!?? I’ve been stumped for about a decade. (Or maybe since puberty, now that I think about it!) Lucky for me, if I’m swimming I’m usually skinnydipping or at a clothing-optional hot springs, but I would love to find a swimsuit I feel comfortable in. I don’t shave and certainly won’t be shaving any bikini lines, so some lower coverage is in order, suit must stay put and be trouble-free, two-piece, AND BE SEXY. Help us out!! :-)

  23. They aren’t on the Target or Hanes websites, but I recently found that Target has a new type of the beloved Hanes girltrunks but with a different waistband. I’m wearing them right this second and they fit the same and, I think, are maybe even better than the old ones.

        • my topman underwear is an XS, and i usually wear a small in women’s underwear, i think just go one size down. underwear is different than other mens clothing — like I wear mediums in women’s shirts, but xxs in men’s shirts. But i think ’cause undies are cut to fit perfectly, there’s less of a jump from one size to the next.

        • If it helps, I think I’m somewhere between like…10-14 in women’s clothes, depending on the brand (usually wear guy’s clothes now) and I usually wear a medium in men’s undies, and the medium tends to not be uber tight on me. If that helps.

          I think I straddled the line between M and L for women’s undies, so I would agree with Riese to try going down one size.

  24. I went underwear shopping today,cause my beloved marvel boxers are beginning to give out. I bought the xs size but they’re men’s sizes aand already too big for me and now the elastic is giving up and they’re getting old. I bought a size 12 of Top underwear a while back and they’re pretty colours and I love them but I can’t seem to find them anymore :( Palmers had some girltrunks last I checked but they weren’t available today either.

    it was all very disappoint. I thinnk I’ll turn to amazon and order those Hanes ones. at least I will if I don’t find anything tomorrow.

  25. Someone mentioned Bjorn Borg (or Björn Borg as we say in Swedish) and I have to give a shout-out to them too. When I was living in the US I had my mom send me their mini shorts because I couldn’t find a pair of equally comfortable boxers in any store. I believe having your mom buy and send you underwear across the Atlantic at the age of 27 is a pretty strong testimonial of their awesomeness.

    Frank Dandy also has some nice designs, but they have a tendency to start behaving like thongs.

  26. Am I the only straddler who honestly finds the bikini-shaped underwear the most comfortable for my body shape? Every time I try any kind of hipsters or boyshorts they bunch or ride up, but everyone else seems to think they’re the best thing ever.

    Case in point: the ‘preferred underpants’ Autostraddle bio section doesn’t have this option, although it has boyshorts, boxers and boxer-briefs. ‘traditional girl’s underpants’ just sounds like granny panties and just don’t describe my rainbow zebra print pairs at all.

  27. I need to share that I went shopping the other day at outlets, and went into Calvin Klein looking for underoos, but they didn’t have any, weird? They had a separate underwear outlet! (I don’t know if this is typical, but needless to say I spent more money than I want to talk about on undapants).

  28. Oooh… I love buying underwear, boyshorts, hipsters, bikinis, briefs, everything but thongs!!!

    BUT I absolutely *hate* underwear with a seam running right down the middle. Never feels right and I seriously wonder who would ever think that could be a good idea.

  29. Autostraddle HOW does your advice sync so perfectly with my life? Just last week I made the switch from bikini’s to men’s boxer briefs. I just need my butt and thighs covered sometimes and I feel jipped when I buy underwear and it’s like, “sorry, this business transaction did not result in enough material to cover your entire ass.” So anyway this post is exactly relevent to my renewed interest in avoiding panty lines and feeling covered/supported. Thank you!!

  30. I have had such a problem finding underwear. I need something to hold it all in, but too many of the men’s boxer briefs are either TOO long, or have that pouch. I have nothing to keep in that pouch, and that’s just fine with me. I found these recently on Amazon and they’re perfect – just the right length, not too thick, and soft cotton. Not a bad price, either. I’ve looked around since and haven’t seen these in any stores.
    Those Uniqlo ones are tempting, though, and not expensive either. (I will NOT spend more on my underwear than the rest of my whole outfit costs!) I plan to check them out.

  31. Okay, I’m being driven way too crazy by this. I purchased the white pair of Calvin Kleins (from the middle of the first picture under “Girltrunks”) like 3 years ago and they’ve been my favorites ever since. They’re super hot, but unfortunately I wore them with new jeans this winter and they’re ruined with blue denim stains! I actually went out today and purchased a pair of those newest CK $12 boyshorts, but they’re only okay. Does anyone know what these underwear are called/if they still make them/how to get denim stains out?!

  32. This is the greatest internet post, ever. I am a sporty hetero lady who’s always hated frilly underpants. I can’t even bring myself to use the “p” word. I have been in an underpants panic since the Hanes Authentic Core took a dive towards the total crap product they’ve replaced them with these days. This post is great. I took a long look at all the styles above that interested me and finally settled on ordering from Bjorn Borg on suggestion from another poster. I love these! They have a sale right now and they are buy two, get one free with free shipping to the US. I ordered 9 pair! I have high hopes and can’t wait to get my order.

  33. UGH YES SO HARD! Riese, thank you for this post and all the helpful comments!! Here are my personal results so far. (I’m a sorta? straight lady who loves to be comfortable. Plus wearing some “men’s” clothes make me feel gr8.

    American Apparel cotton spandex boy brief: so comfy, good for: jeans/when IdgaF about underwear lines, con: underwear line. M

    AE Low Rise Trunk: very comfortable, minimal leg ride, good under fleece lined tights/leggings and long underwear (reduces leg ride) con: pouch means extra fabric. XS

    CK Boys Boxer Briefs: fabric too thin for my liking, not very soft. L Donated.

    Target Mossimo Boxer Briefs: very comfortable, con: legs stretch out a bit through out wear. XS

    Quiksilver Boys Boxer Briefs: SO comfortable soft, pleasantly thin cotton blend but too tight (weee wahhhh). XL Donated.
    If I find men’s XS/S (whatever encompasses 28″), I’m getting them IMMEDIATELY.

    Yes to fly fronts for me cuz no extra fabric!

    I wear a 00-3 in pants, am usually a S/M in women’s underwear. I think I’m just too puffy around my lower torso for an L or XL in boys. Anyone know how the 14+ (the husky size or regular) H & M boys boxer briefs fit? I really want the set with the union jack!

  34. I know this article is two years old, but as a queer nonbinary DFAB person who has struggled mightily with finding acceptable underwear, I want to share a tip:

    Dockers Men’s Stretch Boxer Briefs. $7 a pair on Amazon, perfect leg length (just a bit longer than trunks but not as long as “athletic” boxer-briefs), stretchy, awesome patterns. They are my new favorite underwear.

    You’ve just gotta deal with the junk pouch. It’s minimal enough not to bother me.

    I’ve tried a bunch of others like Calvin Klein microfiber, Hanes Climate Cool, etc., and nothing comes close in comfort/fit/affordability.

    Still on the lookout for an ultra-light, stretchy boxer-brief for summer. The search continues.

    • on the ultra-light, stretchy boxer-brief front, the uniqlo seamless boxer-briefs are fantastic! Got some earlier this summer, and after wearing them as often as possible for a couple weeks, decided to need to get more. So great, and so looking forward to when the additional ones I ordered come in a few days!

  35. This article CHANGED MY LIFE!!!!! So I was in the discount undie shop a week ago and saw some boy’s size 14 fluoro camo girltrunks and thought ‘wow. I never bought these before but suddenly I need them.’ Seriously, it’s been a week and I haven’t been back to the ladybriefs. Camo! I went and got five more pairs and I’m wearing them now. So comfy! So sort of manly, in a girl way! So camo… And no panty line.
    I love you.

  36. Seriously, try Bjorn Borg mini shorts. Fit and quality are great. I was in a panic when the Hanes Authentic Core knickers took a dive in quality and did a pretty exhaustive search myself. You will not be disappointed with Bjorn Borg mini shorts. They are totally perfect for a gender neutral look without all the extra boy fabric.

  37. Amazing article..Thank you! I’d have to imagine that every lesbian out there must think about this topic (and related frustrations) minimum 6x per year. Thanks for making my frustrations decrease and my shopping experience a little more pleasant!

  38. this article is ancient but it’s my day off and I have no social life and I’ve fallen into an autostraddle hole and THE WORLD NEEDS TO KNOW that

    before I came out

    my mom took me shopping at Ross (best place to get brand name boxer briefs by the way – like no way am I paying $30+ for a two pack of underwear)

    And I made her buy me a pack of briefs that say “papi” on the waistband

    (“mom I need these because of reasons”)

    And she didn’t even blink

  39. Would love to see another post for long leg versions of the boxer briefs… I find the trunks, shorts, and regular leg lengths very uncomfortable to wear since they just bunch up and I like the chaffing protection of long leg versions. They’re just so hard to find and I am always disappointed on missing out on colors and stripes and patterns. I’ve only found one comfortable brand so far (JKY at target) and they don’t have many colors.

  40. It would be so lovely to see a 103 edition of this guide, most of the boyshorts are not available anymore. It seems that here in Europe it’s even more difficult to find boyshorts or girltrunks. I currently have two pairs of boyshorts, from Björn Borg and Miss America but both some a bit short and tend to slide into parts where they don’t belong…
    I was just about to order these ones, boyshorts from the Netherlands and even organic:

  41. For a different style, Fruit of the Loom has these:

    (“Fruit of the Loom Women’s 6 Pack Heather Bikini Panties”)

    Colors are assorted and I received one purpley feminine color, (and I think pink is another possible color you could receive) but all the other colors are neutral or masculine (and really nice) and the waistband looks pretty masculine which is why I got them. They’re really comfortable, I’m liking them. :) They also run super big, so check the size chart.

  42. Thanks to the underwear week, I now have reasons to splurge the some really wonderful underwear sites. I wish these types of week arrive more frequently. The idea of funny pants really got me hooked. In the process of celebrating my underwear weekend, I ended up at this site . It has a collection of some really cool bikini underwear. The color and design were different from the usual stuff that I get at physical store. They are very comfortable. I am specially loving the masculinity they showcase effortlessly. I would to explore some more varieties in it.

  43. SO I found this because I actually want SHORTS that fit like boxers. I wear my boyfriend’s boxers all the time around the house and LOVE they way they make my butt look! If anyone has leads on shorts that fit like boxers please keep me in the know! :)

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