when should you really replace your underwear?
Do you remember the book Old Yeller? If not, be warned that there are spoilers ahead and also how have you not read such a classic piece of American literature?
If so, revisit with me this very general synopsis of the book. Set in the Texas plains in the early 1800s, Old Yeller tells the story of an unlikely friendship between a young boy, Travis, and a wild yellow lab who works his way into the heart of the family who initially shuns him through his undying loyalty, surprising obedience, and undaunting courage in the face of danger. The boy calls him ‘Old Yeller’ and through many adventures, their bond grows much deeper than they could have expected. In the end, Yeller contracts rabies during a skirmish with a wild razorback and Travis is left with no choice but to shoot his beloved friend.
If the above story arc describes the relationship between you and your underwear, or we could safely refer to the pairs in your drawer as “Old Yellers” it’s time we had a chat.
Underwear is the first thing you put on and the last article of clothing you remove. Its importance cannot be understated as it pertains to a general feeling of comfort and support, and yet we continue to neglect the land down under by not wearing clean pairs, waiting too long to replace existing pairs, and buying ten packs from our local big box store.
If this report is to be believed, men wait on average seven years before changing their underoos and worse than that, a shocking percentage admit to not changing out for a fresh pair after one day of wear. Seven years? That’s the same time frame as all of high school and most of college. And speaking of high school and college, how many of you are still rocking pairs that you bought during that epoch of your life? The answer is probably too many.
As part of self-care month on the Pursuit, we are exploring the age old question:
When should I replace my underwear?
We will get to the nitty, gritty details to answer that question in a moment. But first, a few considerations:
How many pairs are in your current rotation? If you don’t have at least one pair for every day of the week, and an additional pair for every activity that requires a specialty pair—working out, cycling, etc.—then you need more. The bacteria left from a full day's use is sufficient to warrant a wash after one wear, and the same could be said for any sweaty endeavor.
What kind of condition are they in? Meaning, if there are holes, let them go. If there are stains that you can’t get out after washing and spot treating them, say sayonara. If the waistband has lost its stretch, is fraying, or is otherwise falling apart, it's not you, it’s them. And finally, if they are starting to get thin, transparent, or sheer then you can toss them with confidence.
What types of materials do they use? Synthetic fabrics like polyester don’t last as long and don’t have the ability to get softer over time in the same way as pima cotton and micro modal, and you aren’t likely to find that kind of quality in the aisle across from garden hoses.
So after considering the above information, most experts agree that you should be changing out your underwear as frequently as every six months and you should definitely not be waiting more than a year to do so.
Shocked? So are we. But we also have a few tips as you venture down this brand new road of being a clean person.
1. Ditch all of your existing pairs and buy all new ones at the same time. That way you can know exactly how old they are and what to do when it comes time to replace them.
2. Buy quality before you settle into quantity. We spent years developing these perfect Essentials Boxer Briefs and we promise you that the feel and fit you get here are better than anything you’ve ever worn before.
3. Set a calendar reminder in your phone. If you are anything like me then you are probably useless without a calendar invite. Set one 6-12 months from today and treat yourself to some freshness.
4. Get a few pairs of underwear that are made to handle the sweaty stuff. Our Essentials Boxer Briefs are incredible, but they are made for the everyday, not the sweaty HIIT workouts or your six mile training runs. Try these Essentials Active Boxer Briefs that go the extra mile. This will extend the life of your daily go-to’s.
So if you look into that underwear drawer and all you see are a bunch of worn out “Old Yellers”, then it’s time to take out the proverbial shotgun and do what you have to do.
There are a lot of reasons to keep things fresh in the land down under: better hygiene, better health, etc. But the best reason to upgrade to our Essentials is the kind of supreme comfort and inevitable confidence that comes with the right foundation.