"Fashion in men’s underwear is rapidly changing. Choices aren’t limited to a 3-pack of tighty-whities or voluminous boxers with goofy prints. Now, men have countless design choices. This page is a summary of some of the new designs now available in men's underwear."
TOPS FOR MEN
A high-necked, round collarless neckline with a rib finishing. Popularized by crew racers, this neckline is now popular in T-shirts.
A lightweight, collarless knit shirt with a buttoned placket at the neckline, and sometimes a contrasting lining at the placket and around the neck. The name comes from the crew-racing shirts worn at Henley, the site of a famed annual rowing regatta in the U.K.
Sleeveless or Muscle Shirt
A crewneck t-shirt without the sleeves. Generally, used as outerwear, gym wear, and loungewear. It can also be worn as innerwear when the ability to see the short sleeve through your dress shirt is undesirable.
A sleeveless knit shirt with a deep, U-shaped neckline and deep armholes. Originally an athletic garment, tank tops have found a place in the modern wardrobe, to be worn layered or on its own. Currently, the slang for this style shirt carries the name of "wife beater." (link to tank top)
A v-shaped, collarless neckline with a rib or tape finish. A traditional v-neck comes to 1" below the clavicle. It was designed to be worn under an oxford shirt when worn casually with the top button open. (link to V-neck t shirt)
BOTTOMS FOR MEN
The men's bikini style is cut lower than a low-rise brief. The top elastic sits approximately 4" below the waistline - below the navel. It still provides full rear coverage. The leg has a high cut design and the front never has a working fly.
This is your traditional men's underpant. It has a full rise, meaning it covers the body from the waist to the top of the thigh. Briefs have either an overlap fly or a contour pouch.
A man's cotton undergarment based on shorts worn in the sport of boxing. The traditional boxer is a full rise, full cut short with a 3" inseam. It loosely covers the body from the waist to just above mid thigh. Generally, boxers have a working front fly.
The new boxer brief has the same styling of traditional biker pants, but it's cut a little shorter on the thigh length. Designers took the best of both the brief and the boxer to create this new style. It fits like a brief, but is cut longer in the leg like a boxer. Boxer briefs have a front fly design just like a traditional brief.
Full Cut Boxer
A fuller cut throughout the garment - including leg openings. Many times there will be a U-shaped panel between the legs to reduce binding and increase wearing comfort. Traditionally, full cut boxers have a fly front.
A type of long underwear bottoms usually ankle length. These drawers were first worn in public by John L. Sullivan as a boxing outfit.
With the new low cut pants on the market, this style has become very popular. The waistband rests on the hip approximately 3" below the waist. It still has side fabric, and the legs are traditional brief legs (not high cut). It may or may not have a front fly.
This is a lower rise than a standard brief. The waistband sits approximately 2" below the waistline, just at or above the navel. Other than that, it has all the styling of a traditional brief including a working front fly.
A set of top and pants, designed for sleeping. From the Persian words pai for "leg" and jaman for "garment", pajamas were originally introduced in the 1800's for Indian men to wear as an alternative to the nightgown. Today, pajamas - or pjs - are classic sleepwear for both men and women.
This can become an alternative to an athletic supporter. This brief has a front cup and a back panel, but the sides are nothing more than the elastic waistband. This style provides for more modesty than a string bikini or thong.
This style is the lowest cut and offers the least amount of coverage in men's underwear styles (thong and jock strap excluded). It sits approximately 4" below the waistline and has no side panels. The leg openings go all the way up to the elastic waistband, which is a "string" style band, connecting front and back panels. String bikinis give full seat coverage, but without a working fly.
A slimmer cut boxer with tapered legs for a trim fit. Side vents offer comfort and leg freedom. May or may not have a fly front.
This style has an elastic waistband and a front cup. The front cup panel is kept in place by a tape that goes through the legs and attaches in the center back on the waistband. This is a style used in athletics for more support, or when minimal coverage is desired.
Resembling men's swim trunks from the 50's, the trunk silhouette has made a comeback as underwear. A trunk is similar to a boxer brief but with shorter legs.
Compression shorts are very similar to boxer briefs and are often made from a spandex-like material of two-way stretch fabric. Essentially flyless boxer briefs, these form-fitting garments are versatile multi-sport, long leg biker-type shorts.
Compression shorts keep the muscles warm to prevent muscle strains or pulls. They also prevent chafing and rashes. This short offers the wearer uniform pressure and support to key muscles and often is used in place of a jock strap.
A jock strap consists of a wide elastic waistband with a support pouch that holds an impact resistant protective cup or box to protect the testicles from injury and two straps extending from the base of the pouch around the buttocks to the sides of the waistband.
There is a modesty issue with jockstraps. If they are worn directly against the skin and under white baseball or football pants, they can be seen through the pants. A solution is to wear a jock strap over a pair of compression shorts. This prevents the see-through issue.
A Jockstrap can also be worn under a pair of pants. This is a great alternative to wearing briefs during hiking, biking, camping or other outdoor activities because the a jock strap absorbs less moisture than a pair of cotton briefs and can provide much needed cooling. The jockstrap can also prevent scrotal chafing and impact because the scrotum is lifted away from the thighs - very useful when hiking long distances.
Next section: Underwear Styles