Stuff We Swear By: I’m Never Buying Any Underwear Other Than Rhone Boxer Briefs
Why switch styles when one pair can do it all?
This is Stuff We Swear By, a new series in which our editors expound on an item they use (and love) on a daily (or near-daily) basis.
Item: Rhone Boxer Briefs
Description: Rhone’s take on the boxer brief, the Goldilocksian ideal of men’s underwear, is made of Pima cotton, only available with a five-inch inseam, features a secure “rocket pocket” fly opening and comes in a variety of colors, including solids and a unique pattern they call “space dye.”
How I use it: I put them on and then never think of them again. In all seriousness, the only time I don’t wear these is when I’m rocking five-inch or shorter shorts. I wear Rhone Boxer Briefs with jeans, suits, boardshorts when I go wakeboarding or paddleboarding, on road trips when I’m sitting in the car for most of the day, when I’m working out (if I’m not wearing shorts with a liner). You get it. Wherever, whenever.
Why I swear by it: When a brand comes out with a new pair of boxer briefs, or underwear of any sort, it’s hard to give an impassioned endorsement because you really do have to wear them for months to figure out if they’re worth buying or not. You need to put them through the wringer, in both the literal and figurative sense of the word. That’s exactly what I’ve done with Rhone’s boxer briefs, and after almost two years of wear, I feel comfortable saying you should ditch whatever sub-par undies you’re wearing and fill your drawers with these.
A quick Google search will recommend throwing away underwear and buying a new pair after anywhere from six months to two years of wear, but medical experts agree you can keep donning them as long as they’re not deteriorating, and you’re washing them correctly. (Clothing companies will obviously recommend buying them more often.) My oldest pair from Rhone is coming up on two years in December and they’re barely showing signs of wear — the silky but sturdy elastic waistband is starting to fray ever so slightly, and the seam along the waist has a little bit of pilling, but that’s it. This is after washing and drying them countless times over the years, as well as submerging them in various lakes, oceans and rivers.
This all may seem a little too detailed (are you really talking about underwear pilling?), but I think underwear is something guys don’t take enough time to discuss, which leads men to stick to old faithful brands like Hanes or Fruit of the Loom, or to buy whatever pack catches their eye when they’re in dire straits in the drawers department. You deserve something more considered.
In fact, it seems Rhone designed their boxer briefs specifically to fix the gripes men have with their current underwear. I understand men who have gone back to old-school boxer shorts or briefs because modern styles can often be too tight, sort of like skinny jeans for your junk, but these hit that perfect balance of support without being constricting. In terms of the materials, there’s a tendency for men to own both cheap and expensive underwear that gets worn depending on the situation; Rhone takes that dichotomy out of the equation by charging $32 a pair (less if you bundle them into a three-pack) while also using performance fabric that’s moisture-wicking, odor-resistant and handsome, meaning they feel tailor-made for the gym as much as the bedroom. And speaking of construction, while I am planning on buying some new ones to replace my oldest pairs soon, they sure don’t look like they need to be tossed. I’ve worn plenty of pairs over the years that needed to be retired much earlier.
The last thing is that you should really pick up a pair in the “space dye” pattern. They’re sold out in a few sizes compared to the solid colors, but that’s because they’re the best damn looking pair on the market — much more interesting than your bland blacks and whites, but not too goofy that you’d be embarrassed if you got pantsed for some reason. Not that that’s ever going to happen, but you can never be too prepared. Actually, now that I think about it, “the best underwear to get pantsed in” seems like a pretty good tagline. Feel free to steal that, Rhone.
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