Best Boxer Briefs for Men in 2021
Men's boxer briefs are relatively new on the underwear scene (in the grand scheme). Boxer shorts rose to prominence during the 1920s, with briefs following in the 1930s. But, it wasn’t until the 1980s, however, that someone had the bright idea: ‘what if we smashed those two bad boys together?’
You got peanut butter on my chocolate… you know the deal.
And it turns out that boxer briefs were a revelation.
First appearing in the 1980 film American Gigolo, starring alongside Richard Gere’s rear, the first boxer briefs are thought to have been designed by Giorgio Armani. Later, the style was pioneered by John Varvatos during his 1990-95 stint at Calvin Klein. He remarked that, ‘we just cut off a pair of long johns and thought “this could be cool”’.
And they are, indeed, cool. Most men seem to agree, anyway. They are the most popular style of modern mens’ underwear (next to the very similar - but shorter in the seam - trunks). They have, in fact, been hailed as one of the greatest revolutions in apparel in the 20th century.
BUT, just as with all other forms of mens’ underwear, there are many brands of boxer briefs to choose from. Many that may suit one man better than another in terms of material, fit, and price point.
What sets boxer briefs apart from the rest is the feeling of containment (as well as contentment) you get from wearing them. Thet cosset you and cuddle you: there’s support for your package, fabric enough at the rear to cover and protect, the strong waistband holds everything in place (above your jeans if you so wish), and the longer length gives that feeling of completeness.
So, once again, we have unleashed the all-knowing Pantsman to compile a list of his top recommendations for 2021. Forge ahead, dear reader, and choose your destiny (also known as: the best boxer briefs for you).
Our best boxer briefs top picks
- Calvin Klein Boxer Briefs (Joint best classic boxer briefs)
- BOSS Stretch Boxer Briefs (Joint best classic boxer briefs)
- French Connection Boxer Briefs (5 Pack) (On a budget)
- SAXX Daytripper Boxer Brief Fly and others in the SAXX range (For making a statement)
- HOM HO1 Boxer Briefs (Most innovative)
- Jockey Microfiber Active Boxer Trunks (For the gym)
- Puma Basic Boxer (For the gym... on a budget)
- Polo Ralph Lauren Boxer Briefs (For a comfortable slim fit)
Calvin Klein Boxer Briefs
(Joint) Best classic boxer briefs
Where better place to start than with the classics. Calvin Klein was one of the first, if not the first, mega-brand to adopt the boxer brief style and turn it into a fashion icon.
The design is bold but elegant, with the classic Calivin Klein logo in contrast across the generous waistband. These Calvin Klein boxer briefs were designed for everyday comfort and they certainly deliver.
With a 95/5% cotton/elastane blended fabric, they provide enough breathability for all-day wear, with enough stretch to handle whatever you throw at them. They have a generous, yet supportive fit for definition where it counts and the leg finishes mid thigh - the classic cut.
They even come in a handy pack of 3 so you can stock up quickly on these classic pants and bring some original class to your pants drawer. If your preferred style of underwear is boxer briefs (and it is for many men), then simply put, you need these pants in your collection.
BOSS Stretch Boxer Briefs
(Joint) Best classic boxer briefs
Is it cheating to have two boxer briefs occupy the ‘best classic’ spot? I mean, you can answer if you want, but this is my (and the Pantsman’s) list, so they’re staying. And for good reason.
BOSS might not have quite the claim to boxer brief fame as Calvin Klein do, but they’re by no means second fiddle (hence the joint crown for classic design).
The BOSS Stretch Boxer Briefs are designed in stretch cotton, which is soft, breathable, and… well... stretchy. Everything about these pants screams luxury design and big brand confidence. The BOSS logo is proudly emblazoned on the waistband (for those brand-conscious among you) and, much like the CK offering, they come in a straight cut, providing a classic and timeless style.
They’re great for all day wear: on the go, in the office, lounging around. These guys have you covered for all your basic pants-needs.
The Germans definitely know how to make pants.
French Connection Boxer Briefs (5 pack)
Best boxer briefs on a budget
These French Connection woven cotton boxer briefs are pretty neat and at £5 a pair you cannot go wrong.
They’re simple, classic designs and if you need to top up your pants drawer in a hurry, or need some simple workhorses, these FC boxer briefs will suit you down to the ground. Available in black or as a mixed colour pack they are ideal if you’re packing junior off to uni or just looking for pants to do their job.
No one really wants to make their wallet scream in terror, do they?
SAXX Daytripper Boxer Brief Fly (and others in the SAXX range)
Best boxer briefs for making a statement
SAXX Daytrippers were designed with the daily grind in mind. They’re built for comfort over a long, hard day. They’re made from durable synthetic fibers for a longlasting pair of pants that’ll keep you company whatever you do and wherever you go on your daytripping. They’re great at wicking moisture, while staying super soft and comfortable.
But the real winner here is the range of fun colours and designs that these pants come in - making them a great little statement piece. Multicoloured stripes, camo, polka dots… hell, you can even have sharks on your pants if you want! These pants are fun, outgoing, and liable to spark a conversation - if any of the design peeks above the waistline of your trousers. And there’s nothing like feeling super confident in some fun statement pants.
It’s also well worth taking a look at the slightly more expensive SAXX Vibes if you’re after the same SAXX moisture-wicking comfort and style, but in a slimmer fitting boxer brief - perfect for anyone who either has smaller thighs, or is after more definition than a standard boxer brief.
HOM HO1 Boxer Briefs
Most innovative boxer briefs
‘Most innovative’ seems like a strange category to include in a ‘best of’ list, doesn’t it? But the HOM HO1 boxer briefs are known for their innovative design suitable for those who dress either on the left or the right.
HO1, in fact, stands for ‘Horizontal Opening 1’, which is the design feature that makes these HOM boxer briefs unique. They forgo the usual vertical opening either on the left or right side of the pouch and adopt a horizontal one for easy access by all, no matter your preference of left or right hand (or both if you’re ambidextrous).
On top of this, they’re genuinely high-quality pants. Crafted from modal cotton, which is extremely soft to the touch and excellent for moisture absorption, these are some comfortable boxer briefs that will serve you well during your day-to-day.
In terms of fit, they sit slightly higher up the thigh than some other brands, while the HOM logo is understated and plain. They should fit snugly and not squeeze.
An excellent pair of boxer briefs to try if you struggle with a vertical opening, or simply want to try something a bit different.
Jockey Microfiber Active Boxer Trunks
Best boxer briefs for the gym
Microfiber Active from Jockey is designed to keep you cool and dry during intense workouts, making them the perfect pair of pants to strap into for a lengthy session at the gym.
They’re engineered to offer maximum support (so expect a tighter fit) and are sewn from a synthetic microfiber material in mesh panels that are designed for flexibility and durability, whilst retaining an ultra-soft feel. They’re also great for wicking sweat and are very quick drying - more excellent attributes making them perfectly suited to even your hardest and most intense workouts.
They come in a handy 2-pack, so it’s a great idea to stock up on maybe a couple of these - and that’s your 4 weekly gym sessions covered.
Puma Basic Boxer
Best boxer briefs for the gym (on a budget)
Puma is a big-name sporting brand, so they know what you’re buying their goods for - sports.
The Puma Basic Boxer are a great value set, offering excellent comfort and support, whilst not breaking the bank. Featuring cotton stretch fabric for breathability, support, and comfort, they have the material nailed. The waistband is also nice and thick, with a very generous stretch. This makes them flexible for whatever you’re up to during your gym sesh - warming up, cooling down, and everything in between.
Whilst they are by name, and by nature, ‘basic’, they won’t let you down and are a great choice for picking up purely for sporting wear.
Polo Ralph Lauren Boxer Briefs
Best boxer briefs for a comfortable slim fit
Whilst most boxer briefs are, by their very nature, a slimmer fit, these boxer briefs by Polo Ralph Lauren offer an even slimmer cut in the leg than normal, making them perfect for anyone seeking a little more leg definition or anyone who has slimmer thighs.
They don’t compromise on comfort though. The slimmer fit is bolstered by a cotton/elastane blend for a bit of added stretch - they should never feel like they’re tightly gripping you anywhere. The cotton in the blend also adds that natural soft touch to provide the best comfort and breathability for your skin.
They’re also great for you brand-buffs as they come with a nice Polo pony logo on the left leg and, of course, the classic logo around the waistband.
An excellent addition to your pants drawer - a classic style, in a slightly slimmer fit.
So which men’s boxer brief is best?
As with our other articles, the Pantsman can never tell you which is the BEST pair of boxer briefs you can buy. He loves his children equally. He merely wishes to shepherd them to the right man depending on his needs and requirements.
To that end, if you’re looking for simple, elegant, and classic design in your boxer briefs, then a pair of Calvin Kleins or BOSS boxer briefs should definitely make their way into your drawers. ‘Nuff said.
If you’re a sportsman or avid gym goer, then you should pick up a pair of Jockey’s Microfiber Active Trunks. They’re supportive, comfortable, quick-drying… everything you need.
On a budget? Look to Puma (for sporting endeavours) or French Connection. They offer value that can’t be beaten and will make your wallet grateful rather than scream in terror at the prospect of your pants-related purchases.
Need some statement spice? SAXX has you covered with its wide range of both plain and understated, or wacky and colourful designs. If you’ve always thought, ‘man, I want some pants that have loads of sharks all over them’, then you’ve come to the right place.
If you’ve read this article thoroughly and you’re thinking that boxer briefs may not be the right style for you, fear not! We have prepared a helpful underwear style guide to assist with your decision making.
If you DO like the look of these pants, then please do ensure you read our very brief and easy-to-use underwear size guide to make sure you get the best fitting pair of pants that we can provide.
Otherwise, hit the Pants & Socks main page and browse for yourself. You wear underwear every day (or most days anyway), so choosing the right pair of pants for you is a decision that definitely deserves a great deal of thought.