How Often Should You Buy New Underwear?

It’s a bit of a classic situation - men never buy themselves new underwear. Indeed, it’s common for most men to only receive new underwear on special occasions, such as Valentine’s Day, a Birthday or Christmas. 

But, we really should be more vigilant about it. 

If you ever find yourself asking the question: “Where's my good underwear?”, then… what the hell are you doing? 

Why isn’t EVERY pair of underwear you own your ‘good’ underwear?! 

With that in mind, let’s break down just how often you should probably be refreshing your underwear drawer, some common signs to look out for that you really need new underwear and some methods on how you can extend the life of your underwear. 

How often you should buy new underwear

Time to get real.

You should be picking new underwear every 6 months at least. This is the perfect way to ensure that you’re never scrambling for your ‘good’ pairs and that you can keep a wide variety in circulation for longer. 

However, at Pants&Socks, we’d recommend grabbing a new pack of three every 3 months - but it can be pretty difficult to remember sometimes, right? After all, we often have more urgent things to worry about than refreshing our underwear drawers - but that doesn’t mean you should excuse old underwear from ruining the ‘good’ underwear vibes of your pants drawer. 

That’s why we created our subscription service - we take the thinking out of updating your drawer and have created a service that allows you to set up a selection of fresh underwear delivered free to your door whenever you want!

Simply choose the underwear you want, choose how often you want to receive them (every month, 3 months, 6 months… the choice is yours!) and then sit back and wait for your underwear to arrive. And - naturally - you can update your preferences at any time, allowing you maximum flexibility in your underwear subscription. And, of course you receive 20% off and free delivery - what’s there not to like? 

But how should you know when it’s time to set up one of these subscriptions…?

How to know when you need new underwear

There are a few signs that your underwear is on its way out:

The elastic is compromised

Most men’s underwear these days come with an elastic waistband. When the elastic becomes damaged, the integrity of the pants is compromised with it - they may not stay up around your waist anymore, basically making them completely ineffective at fulfilling their main function, right!

You might see some elastic strands sticking out of the material fibres of the waistband, or you may notice more slack in the elastic than is normal. If you do, don’t waste time - grab some new pants.

The material starts pilling

This happens a lot with cotton - you know, the little fluff balls that appear on the surface of the material. It happens a lot with jumpers and loungewear when they get older - and it happens with some underwear too. 

While this isn’t an IMMEDIATE sign that you need to replace them, it is a sure sign that the material fibres are weakening and that you may start to find holes very soon…


The most obvious sign to be sure - but you shouldn’t be walking around with holes in your underwear. It’s just not on. 

Besides the potential for letting some… unwanted visitors from within your pants making an appearance out in the open, a small hole will inevitably grow until your pants become entirely unwearable. 

Now, you could try and repair the hole, but it’s probably best to recycle your older pair and pick up a fresh set. 

You can read more about what to do with old underwear right here. 

Why you shouldn’t wear old underwear

Well, there are some obvious reasons - they’ll fall apart and basically become useless - but there are actually compelling health reasons why you should change-up your underwear drawer regularly. 

Your old underwear can actually become something of a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. After all, let’s not forget the areas of the body that your underwear are designed to cover. While washing them properly will remove the vast majority of these harmful bacteria, over time they will start to build in the damaged fibres. These bacteria can cause a number of issues like UTIs and yeast infections… so, best to avoid eh? 

Moreover, your old underwear may shrink or start to fit improperly, which can lead to more than just discomfort. Underwear that is too tight can restrict your blood flow, or lock in moisture that would otherwise be wicked away - leading to more health risks. 

So, best to be safe and change up your underwear regularly, right? 

Tips for washing your underwear to make it last longer

Now, we still want your underwear giving you a good stint - that means for lasting in peak condition for at least a year. So, here are some handy washing tips to help keep them funky fresh for longer:

1. Wash at lower temperatures

    We’d recommend 30 degree washes and gentle cycles, combined with an appropriate dose of a detergent of your choice to keep your underwear both clean and undamaged. Just don’t forget to turn them inside-out before you put them in the wash for a better, deeper clean.

    Higher temperatures can wear out the material fibres, which may lead to shrinkage or even hole creation over time. It’s also a great way to save some energy and help the planet out. 

    2. Have a wide selection of pants

    Having a wider selection of pants simply means that you won’t be wearing the same pair too often. After all, the more you wear a pair, the sooner they will become aged and damaged. Logic at its finest!

    3. Consider hand-washing

    The ultimate way to control the intensity of your wash - washing them by hand. This way, you won’t be at risk of washing at temperatures that are too high (as you’ll burn your hands off, right?) and you’ll be washing in smaller loads, thoroughly ensuring a good, even wash for all your pairs. We’d actually recommend popping half a cup of white vinegar into the mix as well for its bacteria-busting properties. 

    How often should you change your underwear?

    It may seem like a bit of a no-brainer, but you should only wear your underwear once before washing it. This is the best way to ensure that you’re always wearing clean, fresh underwear that doesn’t stink! Moreover, doing so will keep you healthy and bacteria free.

     Washing underwear won't seem like such a hassle when you have several pairs to spare, so we’d recommend stocking your pants drawer with at least enough pairs to wear a fresh set every day for 2 weeks. 

    We’d also recommend recycling your very oldest pairs and subbing in at least one new pair every 3 months to keep things fresh.

    Where to buy quality underwear that lasts

    Naturally, we can help you out with that. After all, we’re THE men’s pants and socks specialists in the UK and can set you up with all of the best designer brands you can shake your old pants at!

    Whether you’re a fan of classic brands like BOSS or Calvin Klein, or you want to try something new and adventurous like SAXX, we’ve got you covered with an array of the very best brands that money can buy. 

    And, to top it off, you can set yourself up with our special Pants and Socks Subscription to get you the pants you need whenever suits you best - with free delivery and a tasty 20% off RRP to boot. 

    So, if this article has got you in the mood for an underwear overhaul, you know exactly where to head next: our main pants homepage, where you can find our wide selection of styles and brands to suit all your needs! 

    And don’t forget, stick with our Below the Belt Blog for more tips, tricks, reviews and… well, everything pants and socks!

    Stay fresh, guys!