51 Best Slang Names for Underwear

man on lounging on a sofa with one arm behind their head in black boxer briefs

Writing for an underwear blog means I’m constantly learning new names for underwear. Hipster panties, mens boxers, bikini underwear, the list goes on and on (and on). But I wanted to compile a list of all of my favorite underwear names, so I did just that.

We’ll start with the basics and then move into slang terms, which may give you another name for underwear you've never even heard of before. And of course, we’ll cover historical and global names for underwear. By the time you’ve finished the list, you’ll be able to say another word for underwear for every week of the year! Now that’s a new goal for 2023.

So if you’ve ever needed another name for underwear when describing your downstairs clothing situations (or want a new party trick!), read below.

 

STANDARD NAMES FOR UNDERWEAR

women wearing only a black pair of panties stands in the woods with her hands up

Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start! Here you’ll find some basic other words for underwear. They might not be as jazzy as some of the later words, but they do the job. Plus, there’s some interesting differences between them.

  1. Undies: short for underwear.

  2. Panties: technically panties only refers to women’s underwear, especially ones in a bikini or thong style. Don’t worry, we’ll get to man panties in the next section.

  3. Mens briefs: men’s underwear that doesn’t extend down the thigh.

  4. Boxers: thin, flowy short-style underwear.

  5. Thongs: a type of panty with a very thin bottom for extra booty pops!

  6. Boxer briefs: the goldilocks of men’s underwear!

  7. Trunks: what’s the difference between boxer briefs vs trunks? Trunks underwear is slightly shorter!

  8. Undergarments: I’m pretty sure only people born before 1899 use this term.

  9. Lingerie: fun and sexy underwear!

  10. Long johns: this typically refers to a type of underwear that are thin, long pants you wear in cold weather to keep you warm.

  11. Underpants: main character of the hit comic, Captain Underpants!

 

SLANG NAMES FOR UNDERWEAR

woman in a black bra and panties with towel on her head laughs

If you want to spice up your vocab with other words for underwear, you came to the right place. Here are 29 creative, illustrative, and sometimes hilarious underwear names to shock your grandma and have your teacher write “see me” on the top of your essay.

12. Drawers: named after the act of drawing them up your legs to put them on

13. Tighty whities: they’re tight, they’re white, you get the idea!

14. Granny panties: usually used to mean plain and bulky panties, but hey, they’re comfy!

15. Unmentionables: in today’s example of weird 18th century sexism, the term unmentionables refers to how a woman in lingerie is more erotic than fully nude AKA completely taboo to talk about in polite company.  

16. Skivvies: old-timey nautical slang for men’s undies.

17. Manties: ahh the ever popular term for man panties!

18. Nut huts: because even your nuts deserve a comfy home.

19. Unders: I don’t know why, but this one gives me the ick.

20. Underoos: this now generic term for all underwear actually comes from the name of a popular kids brand of underwear in the 1970s. They were one of the first to design their undies after comic book superheroes!

21. Roos: shortened version of underoos, but also Australian for kangaroo.

 a hammock strung up between two palm trees in front of the ocean and sunset

22. Banana hammocks: the term “banana hammock” was first used in an 1870 poem about a literary fairy hanging up a hammock made of banana. Unfortunately, we’ve strayed far from that use because now it refers to small men’s undies!

23. Butt bags: just a bag of butts, what more could you want?

24. Junk trunks: the forward-facing version of butt bag!

25. Chamber of secrets: this is a reference to the Harry Potter book of the same name. But for your sake, I hope you’re not hiding a giant poisonous snake in your underwear.

26. Grape smugglers: why exactly you would have to smuggle grapes anywhere is beyond me.

27. Oystercatchers: seafood and underwear isn’t my ideal combo, but to each their own!

28. Manhole covers: I’m no doctor, but if anything downstairs looks like a manhole, maybe it’s time to visit your primary care provider!

29. Frillies: small and lacy panties, usually for women.

30. Smalls: because underwear is usually the smallest piece of clothing.

six sausages lined up on a grill

31. Sausage skins: referring to underwear as sausage skins makes me sick.

32. Clam openers: this one I don’t understand as much…shouldn’t underwear be keeping things closed?

33. Pretties: “come here my pretties,” I say as I open my underwear drawer.

34. Undercrackers: this term comes from the cracking sound that elastic waistbands make when pulled back and let go against your skin.

35. Butt huggers: everyone deserves a butt hug every once in a while.

36. G-string: there’s no consensus on where this term came from for thongs. Some people guess the “g” is short for groin, while others think it’s a reference to the smallest string on a guitar.

37. Weiner basket: makes me want a hot dog real bad!

38. Snake suppressor: yes, please suppress that pant snake!

39. Pecker packer: surprisingly not for birds!

40. Ball bags: not to be confused with the kind your soccer coach brings to practice.

 

HISTORICAL NAMES FOR UNDERWEAR

woman in a green bra and black bike shorts lays down in a yoga pose surrounded by greenery

Did you know that the history of underwear is fascinating? For example, you would find most Roman women going commando until the 18th century! Plus, they had some pretty amazing names for underwear, which you’ll find below.

41. Knickers/knickerbockers: people started calling underwear “knickerbockers” because of an 18th century illustration in a novel by Diedrich Knickerbocker. Then, it was shortened to “knickers” in the late 19th century. Not exactly the legacy I’m looking to establish!

42. Pants/pantaloons/pantalettes: pantaloons and pantalettes were interchangeable terms for the pant-style undergarments that ladies of society used to wear. Picture breezy ankle-length pants. Then, it was shortened to pants, which some people still use today, especially in the UK.

43. Bloomers: a symbol of women’s rights, bloomers are named after the activist Amelia Bloomer, who wore these long underwear sticking out of the bottom of her dress! A fashion icon!

44. Delicates: refers to the delicate material a lot of underwear is made out of like lace and silk.

45. Union Suit: the official underwear of the US military during World War I, this full body undergarment has the iconic butt flaps for going to the bathroom without having to remove the entire suit. I think I might start a petition to include those butt flaps on all rompers and jumpsuits from here on out!

 

NAMES FOR UNDERWEAR AROUND THE WORLD

a pair of black underwear with a passport on top laid on an orange suitcase

If there’s one thing that can unite everyone around the world, it’s that a comfy pair of undies are the key to a good life. But many cultures use another word for underwear, which can reveal a lot about their way of life.

46. Calcinha fio denta: in Brazil, people call thongs “calcinha fio denta,” which means dental floss panties. And thongs are synonymous with Brazil, with both men and women routinely rocking thong swimsuits on the beach—more power to them!

47. Shreddies: Kiwis are known for their fun nicknames for everyday items and shreddies is no exception. Let’s just hope shredding isn’t actually their answer for what to do with old underwear!  

48. Ginch: O Canada, land of maple syrup and ginch!

49. Underdaks: “Oi mate, you forgot your underdaks at the barbie last night.” That’s my impeccable Australian impression.

beach with calm waters and a palm tree with the sun shining through its fronds

50. Shorts: my partner is Fijian and constantly asks where his shorts are. Then I have the fun job of deciding if he’s looking for his underwear or his actual shorts! However, hundreds of years ago, he would have been looking for underwear made of mulberry tree bark! (For more lingerie trivia, check out our list of fun underwear facts!)

51. Broekie: a South African slang word for panties, coming from the Afrikaans words for trousers.

 

CONCLUSION: OTHER NAMES FOR UNDERWEAR

There you have it—51 new words for underwear! Whether you stick with the basics “panties” or try out a fun one like “nut hut,” you’ll be set for life with ways to refer to undies. Which one is your favorite? Let me know in the comments below?



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