Below The Belt: Our Guide to Men’s Underwear

Categories Fashion


What you wear down under reveals plenty…

Like a suit, the sort of underwear you climb into says a lot about you. Here is what’s on offer, from the styles that make you look like a combination of Ryan Reynolds and David Beckham to the ones you should avoid, unless you like a bit of Mickey Mouse.

1. Mortgage Pants

It’s your wife – not your mum – who’ll pitch a three or seven-pack of inexpensive, practical undies into the supermarket trolley. What with the kids and all, you’re both too tired to have sex often so what’s the point buying the Ferrari of underpants when a Barina will do? Nearly always available in colours that don’t show the dirt or their age – dark green, navy, black and grey- or in stripes for that added pizzazz, the two favoured styles for mortgage pants are briefs and boxers. If you have piled on the kilos – be careful. Two-sizes-too-small hipster trunks could make people worry that you’re on the brink of a midlife crisis. A woman’s suspicions are quickly aroused when her husband starts buying branded underwear like Hugo Boss or Diesel. When she hangs them in your face it’s no good trying to say that you thought a sexier look down under would “rekindle the passion you once shared”. She knows you bought them to impress another woman so if cheating is your MO, don’t even think about throwing them in the clothes basket, hide them.

2. Scoring Pants

Better known as the Saturday Night Specials – because they play a crucial role in the mating game. Designer underwear from Emporio Armani (makes women think of Ronaldo), Calvin Klein (six-pack stomachs immediately spring to her mind) and Oroton (well worth $30-plus for their quality and snugness) fit the bill as tools of seduction whatever style you choose. If your body’s glory days are but a distant memory, briefs are making a big comeback with men over 30 because they are much more “forgiving” of love handles.

3. You’ve Made It Pants

Once you’re in the driver’s seat – of a corporate Beemer or Merc – all the underwear rules in the book are yours. There’s plenty of high-end underwear brands for men that have cropped up in recent years as guys get more… choosy. See Icebreaker, Frigo and Waffle, for e.g.

4. Graphic Novel Pants

A few years back, it was amazing how many Marvel comic superheroes, cartoon characters, outer space and souped-up car images were splattered over men’s boxers and trunks— especially the cheaper ranges. But only the under 12s can get away with Homer Simpson and Ironman undies, even if you are the world’s biggest fan of Robert Downey Jr. There’s no need to suppress your fantasy gene, though. Just make sure you buy quality gear suitable to reflect a technologically advanced planet like Krypton.


5. Locker Room Pants

The hipster trunk reigns supreme when a lot of guys hunker in the locker room before heading for the showers. Once a man’s undies are off it’s not the done thing to stare at his tackle. but no one will doubt the size when it’s tightly encased in a pair of trunks – wear them for roam and support, of course, and not to compete with other males. Women love the look, too, because it shows them your potential at first glance.