Best Running Underwear – 2021 Buying Guide
Comfortable underwear that offers key features like moisture management, secure fit, and anti-chafing properties, is an essential base layer in any runner's gear bag.
We've prioritized these elements in our testing and review of the best running underwear on the market. Peruse our top picks below before ordering your next pair to test.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
When you are engaged in a physical activity like running, you want clothing that is close-fitting, has great moveability and stretch and is breathable. It should be constructed with smooth seems, nothing bulky that could be irritating and it should be made of lightweight materials that feel almost like a second skin. Functionally, the fabric should be able to wick moisture and sweat away in all conditions so that the skin can stay dryer which is much more comfortable during exercise. The garment should also be durable to stand up to movement and moisture.
Fabric that keeps moisture away from the skin keeps the skin dryer and helps to prevent chafing, rashes, and other skin irritation and discomfort. These fabrics will pull moisture from the skin and into the fabric which also allows the skin to stay cool. This is significant because wearing clothing that causes you to feel hot or overheat can derail any physical activity. When the weather is colder, these same materials function to keep the heat on the skin and allow you to build up the warmth. Materials that will work functionally in for these purposes may include Lycra®, polypropylene, or some polyester.
Last, the ability of the material to move, stretch, and flex will be important As your body is constantly moving you want your garments to move smoothly with it and not be constricting. This can not only be irritating, but it can restrict blood flow in areas where there is a tight restriction. It can limit movement and can overall make for a ride that isn't as enjoyable.
The construction of the materials is very important to overall comfort and also for reducing friction and restriction. Bulky tight seams can be a problem when assessing the right running gear, especially with respect to underwear. The placement of seams something to look at because you want to make sure they aren't in places that could be majorly uncomfortable. these seems should be strongly constructed to add to the durability of the garment but they should be smooth and slim, stay away from bulky seems that can cause much irritation with movements that are repeitive.
Additionally, the waistband should also be constructed with durable attachment points without being bulky itself.
Smoother, larger and more form-fitting options are best. The waist can be a very common source of irritation to a band that has a softer fit and a is also made of moveable and more flexible material is equally important. While the band should be a higher fit to keep your underwear up so it won't slide down during movement, it shouldn't be restrictive and should be malleable and have a nice feel on the skin.
As discussed, breathability in the materials used is very important. Whether it is cold and you need airflow to keep you cool and dry or it is warm and you need to retain heat, air flow comes into play in both cases. Air should have the ability to work through the materials and reach the skin to keep them dry and comfortable. Thinner materials that have good airflow include Lycra®, spandex, and polyester. Airflow can reduce sweat accumulation that can cause irritations like chaffing. Additionally, these thinner, and lighter weight materials can help reduce the probability of the materials building up and being annoying during your movements. This ability to resist material build-up also adds to the ability of the materials to be functional in keeping you cool, dry, and comfortable during the duration of your exercise session.
Best Underwear for Running
1. Balanced Tech
A value pack that has assorted colors, Balanced Tech makes seamless bikini style briefs constructed of 92% Nylon/8% Elastane fabric. The fabric is very soft and comfortable, it is perfect for active wear and physical activity because it is also anti-odor and has excellent breathability.Read more
This garment is made of super soft fabric that has excellent flexibility. The four-way stretch molds to your body's contours and offers tremendous support in the process. The seamless style allows for less bulk and a nice appealing look under tight compression pants or yoga-style bottoms. Your panty lines are eliminated and there is less uncomfortable friction on your skin.
The full coverage construction wraps your front and there is moderate full seat coverage. The fabric uses the latest technology so it can work for an active lifestyle and combines it with the trending colors and styles that make the garment very appealing overall. The moisture-wicking abilities are efficient in warm and cold weather.
Cost and Value
This is a very economical bundle coming in a pack of 6 with a smart and affordable price tag. There are a couple of assorted colors in the pack to mix things up and the functionality of the fabric is just what you want when you are exercising.
The adidas briefs are made for sports performance and they are made with functional materials that work to wick water away from the skin so you can keep cool and dry during your exercise. They are soft and light with good breathability and use polyester fabric to help with varying climates.Read more
These briefs are tagless so there are no annoying pieces of fabric hanging from the back and they are made with a soft plush waistband. they come up your waist with a medium rise and the stitching is soft and smoother so it won't irritate your skin. The double-lined mesh pouch offers a decent amount of support.
The fabric has nice air flow and can dry out quickly keeping you less clammy and sticky. The leg construction is made to reduce bunching and riding up. These are a solid option for all climates even the hot and humid. The moisture management technology and design work very well making these optional for activities that will make you sweat.
Cost and Value
This product comes in a 2-pack with muted to neutral colors. The pricing is moderate for getting a niche sport performance option from a highly reputable brand.
SAXX makes a very nice, friction-free super supportive men's brief. These briefs have functional comfort along with nice features of anti-odor technology, moisture-wicking fabric, and the ability to keep you fresh for the duration of your day no matter what activities you are engaging in.Read more
The fabric selection used is very soft and comfortable to the touch. They allow maximum airflow and contour nicely to your body so you don't even feel like you are wearing them.
The nine-panel construction offers full coverage support. It helps to better uphold the glutes, thighs, quads, and hamstrings, in an ergonomic fashion so that you can move more efficiently. The flat-out seams used in the stitching allows for the softer side of the stitching to be in contact with your body to better improve comfort and reduce itching and irritation.
Cost and Value
These briefs are really nicely constructed and have a terrific feel when worn. They are going to be a bit pricier per pair but they offer a ton of support to your bottom. These are sport-specific so they can aid in all types of physical activity. Best of all, they are easy to maintain as you can clean them with ease by throwing them into your washer.
Kalon makes a comfortable thong-style bottom that is flexible and is made out of nylon spandex for extra stretchability. They come in a nice bundle of 6 always allowing you to have clean backups on hand when you go on your next active adventure.Read more
The ribbed upper band helps these briefs stay up and not roll down when wearing. The leg edges are serged so there is nice elasticity allowing your body to move freely and effortlessly.
You can wear any garment you prefer and these will not stand out underneath. the low-mid rise fits almost every outfit and the invisible panty lines allow you to wear form-fitting options without worrying about extra visuals you'd not want. The no seem side construction adds to the minimizing of those unattractive panty lines.
Cost and Value
A nice bundle for a solid price, these thongs come in a value pack of 6 varied colors. A favorite for professional ballerinas these are intelligently designed and made for women in motion.
Runderwear thong offers some very nice features including chafe-free design, seamless technology, and provides maximum support and moveability when engaging in physical activity and performs well especially for running.Read more
Even though these are thongs, they offer tremendous support, they are in no way dinky. They are basically like a full coverage brief with a bit less material in the rear. They sit a bit higher on the waist but they are very light overall and the reduction in the fabric is a favorite for those who prefer exercising with less material.
This company makes award-winning undergarments. They are very accredited and recognized, recently winning the Gold Medal for Best Underwear and Socks at the National Running Awards in April 2018. They are constantly innovating and researching to continue to improve their highly technical designs. This is a brand that has more than 20 various product styles and colors available now and they always have more in the pipeline coming to the market.
Cost and Value
These are a very comfortable pair of briefs that won't slip and move around on you and they can be used for literally any type of sport or physical activity you choose. Highly decorated they are a bit pricier but they have a solid reputation for performance that backs it up.
6. New Balance
New Balance makes a brief that has a nice material combination of polyester and spandex for great temperature control and flexibility. They will definitely do a better job at keeping your body drier, not to mention considerably fresher, than if you were using cotton.Read more
The colors and pattern options that you can choose from are pretty neat looking. These are just a bit too tight where it is preferred to have some more room. They are also very functional, being long enough to give nice support as well as being very ventilated for nice air flow.
Solid Fit that Stays Put
You will really fall in love with the fit. the waistband doesn't slide or curl up and while it stays in place it also keeps the briefs solidly affixed to your body. The easy design helps you worry less about your gear and able to focus more on your run.
Cost and Value
The price isn't bad and the construction offers a durable build. The overall functionality works well for humid conditions and the fit makes these enjoyable to wear.
ZONBAILON men's briefs are made with nice features including a soft pouch, open fly, and no ride up long leg design.
They have great movability and breathability for physical activity.
Great for Big Guys
The bamboo fiber and spandex make for a very flexible and stretchable fit, and the extra large size options provide excellent versatility in sizing. Larger men with larger frames or extra muscle bodies can find a comfortable fit with this brand. There is plenty of support and breathing room.
These are a very comfortable brief option and they are fairly durable. If you work long hours in an active job or spend an l of time engaged in physical activity, you want something that can hold up and feel good. These do both.
Cost and Value
These are a bit pricier per brief. They have tremendous functionality and comfort, they seem to hold well without riding up and the size ranges allow many bodies to find the perfect fit.
RBX comes in a value pack that is designed after the classic boxer brief. They are performance based with solid construction to support you staying active.Read more
The smooth and soft finish combined with simple stretchability makes these briefs sit well. Another nice thing about the fabric is that it won't lose it's shaped or stretch out after watching.
If you work or play outside on a regular basis you are going to want that dry-fit ability. These can hold up to long days keeping the moisture off your body so you won't have to worry about skin irritation and chafing.
Cost and Value
You can't beat this bundles price which breaks down to a really nice price per boxer amount allowing you to always have backups. The fit works well and they are efficient at wicking away moisture.
9. Under Armour
Under Armour makes a highly flexible super comfortable and stretchy thong style underwear. They are light and offer a ton of moveability and they also won't show panty lines.Read more
If you are into yoga, running, or a basic gym rat you will really enjoy these. They are soft, comfortable, and they look really good on, flattering most body types. they don't show panty lines under form-fitting clothing and they feel like a second skin, as they are very light.
While these are a perfect compliment to all physical activities, they are easy enough to wear every day. If you are on the go and busy with errands or work, these will suit all your needs just fine. They are moveable, seamless, and will keep you dry and comfortable.
Cost and Value
Coming in a three pack from Under Armour, the price is attractive. They have a nice sporty style that is flattering on most body types and they offer a nice comfortable fit you can wear on a daily basis or when you are active.
MYPACKAGE makes a Pro serious brief with quick dry fabric to keep you cool and dry during your most rigorous workout.
The fabric is a high stretch and very light, and the waistband won't curl up or roll under keeping these comfortable and pleasing to wear.
There is a reason these are in the "Pro" series line. They are specifically made for athletes who want both excellent performance and ultimate comfort. No athlete wants their gear holding back their potential. These will do the job so you can focus on your sport.
Men need support and these won't let you down. The technology used is even better than premium compression garments for keeping your package situated, secured, and supported. It is also protective so you can rest assured you will be on point when you are moving around and about.
Cost and Value
There is no doubt these are on the higher end of the price range and the market. They have tons of support, offer extra stability and movement, and they do a tremendous job at moisture management.