A lot of points in the boxers vs briefs debate are theoretical and abstract: the conversation often centers on questions of comfort and appearance — all fundamentally subjective things. But, to bring an empirical eye to the debate, there’s a documented scientific benefit to wearing boxers, and it has to do with temperature.
The form-fitting nature of briefs (and boxer briefs) is among their great appeals. They provide support and don’t bunch or ride up under jeans, which have gotten slimmer over the years. But the form-fitting structure is also the problem with boxer briefs and briefs. The breathability of boxers not only makes them comfortable but may help with sexual health. The biological function of external reproductive organs is to keep them cooler than other parts of the body. Tight-fitting underwear may interfere with this. That’s why boxers can be a great option, especially in warmer weather.
Boxer briefs and briefs are still arguably the best options for wearing under slim-fitting pants. But it’s worth keeping boxers in the rotation, especially on warmer days and times when you’re wearing looser pants or shorts. Boxers are also a comfortable option for sleepwear.
What To Consider Before Buying Boxers
One thing to consider is the construction of boxers. Pretty much all boxer briefs and briefs are knit, but boxers come in both knit and woven materials. Knit boxers have a similar jersey material as boxer briefs and T-shirts, giving them a little more stretch and thickness. Woven boxers are the traditional option. Woven boxers are lighter and more breathable, but won’t stretch and can be too thin for some. Knit boxers will typically have a solid, structured elastic band, while woven boxers generally have a sort of pleated design with a hidden internal elastic band. The woven waistband chafes less but tends to be less secure than the tight knitted waistband.
How We Chose the Best Boxers
Even the highest quality boxers will need to be replaced with some regularity, which is why we looked for affordable multi-pack options that allow you to stock up and save money. That said, something that you wear all day in your most private area should be comfortable, which is why we turned to trusted brands like Calvin Klein, Hanes and Gildan for the best boxers, and prioritized options made from soft cotton. Variety was crucial, so we looked at woven and knit boxers that were available in prints or solids. If you’re looking for the best multipacks of boxers, these are the ones to get.
1. Hanes Men’s 5-Pack Knit Boxers
Hanes has been making reliable basics for a long time, and this five-pack is reasonably-priced and has traditional details like single-button fly and an elastic waistband. The name “Hanes” is printed in white around the elastic band. There’s no tag on the waistband, which prevents itching.
Pros: Value pack of five boxers. Tagless design reduces itching.
Cons: “Assorted colors” means ones received may be different from the ones shown.
2. Fruit of the Loom Men’s Boxer Multipack
If you prefer your underwear without an obvious logo running around the waistband, this option from Fruit Of The Loom has its logo on a small, discreet tag on the front of the waistband. They come in a pack of five boxers of assorted colors. They’re soft and made from 100% cotton.
Pros: Comfortable and soft. Discreet logo, tagless. Comes in a pack of five.
Cons: Choosing “assorted” means you won’t know which colors you’ll get.
3. Gildan Men’s Woven Boxer Underwear Multipack
If you prefer breathable woven boxers to knit ones, then consider this option from affordable mainstay Gildan. They come in a pack of five, and they include a variety of prints in different shades of blue. The boxers are made from 55% cotton and 45% polyester, giving them the benefits of breathable cotton with the advantage of moisture-wicking polyester.
Pros: Affordable five-pack. Comes in unique prints. Moisture-wicking and breathable.
Cons: Some may prefer the softness of 100% cotton. Patterns received may vary.
4. Calvin Klein Knit Boxers
Calvin Klein’s underwear may have initially sold well due to provocative advertising, but they continue to sell because they’re some of the best on the market. This three-pack is available in either all black, all white, assorted shades of blue, or a black/white/gray mix. They have a button closure at the fly and a printed Calvin Klein logo along the waistband.
Pros: Soft 100% cotton, available in various solid colors.
Cons: Difficult to remove tags. Underwear runs large.
5. Polo Ralph Lauren Classic Fit w/Wicking 3-Pack Knit Boxers
Ralph Lauren is one of the most iconic American brands of all time, and the brand’s solid line of basics is a great one to turn to when you need to refresh your t-shirt or underwear drawers. This set of boxers are available in plenty of different colors, like this solid set in three shades of blue. The boxers are made from soft cotton in a knit construction, and they have a repeating logo on the waistband.
Pros: Soft cotton. Plenty of color options.
Cons: Long inseam length means they may not rest as comfortably under some pants.
6. IZOD Men’s 4 Pack Knit Boxer
These knit boxers from Izod are made from 100% cotton, with an elastic branded waistband. Each pack includes four boxer shorts, and you can choose between two color options. One pack includes gray-scale colors, including a light gray, dark gray and two black boxers. If you prefer more color, you can opt for the pack that includes blue and red stripes and blue and gray gingham. Unlike some other options, these have a button fly, providing more coverage.
Pros: Functional button fly. Four-pack, rather than three, for greater value.
Cons: Somewhat more expensive than other options.
7. Lucky Brand Men’s Woven Cotton Classic Boxer
Despite being best known for denim, Lucky Brand is a surprisingly great brand to turn to for basics, including t-shirts and underwear. These boxers come in range of stylish prints, and each set includes one solid, one plaid and one print in complementary colors. The boxers are made from 100% cotton, and they have a soft waistband.
Pros: Stylish prints and patterns. 100% cotton construction.
Cons: Can be prone to shrinkage.