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11 Best Travel Underwear

A pair of WAMA hemp travel underwear sits atop a red suitcase with a passport and cell phone.

A good pair of travel underwear can make or break a trip. I know it sounds extra, but it’s a factor that sets the travel pros apart from the amateurs. Think of all the things a good pair of travel-approved high waisted underwear or mens briefs can do for you. I’m talking less sweating, less chafing, and a lot less smell. A traveler’s dream, right?

When choosing the best travel underwear, you’ll need to consider a few factors. I compiled a researched list of what to look for and included 11 brands that’ll make those long plane rides and days of sightseeing a lot more comfortable. Whether you opt for breathable hemp underwear or moisture-wicking wool, your future travel self will thank you.

Hemp Boxer Briefs

The Most Comfortable Pair of

Men's Underwear

 

Hemp Boxer Briefs

The Most Comfortable Pair of

Men's Underwear


WHAT MAKES A GOOD PAIR OF TRAVEL UNDERWEAR

When finding the best traveling underwear, you need to consider durability, weight, comfort, odor control, drying time, and breathability. Not every pair will be the best in all categories, but travel underwear should complement your movements as much as possible. That’s because when you travel, you move around a lot. Even small actions can wear down your unmentionables quickly.

A woman takes a photo of a mountain and beach scene while traveling.

You know that feeling when a sightseeing tour turns into a multi-hour affair in the summer heat? Or maybe when you may go from breakfast to a morning of kayaking to an afternoon of exploring ruins? You need underwear that can withstand that consistent movement and support your body along the way.


DURABILITY

Good travel underwear includes strong fabric that keeps its shape as you move around and hop from place to place. The average American takes 3,000-4,000 steps daily, but imagine how that figure can jump while on a trip! For one woman, a European vacation doubled the number of steps she took per day. And with each stride, you want your underwear to stay strong.

Hemp fabric is the most durable material yet remains soft, so it makes for some of the best traveling underwear. And although synthetic materials are sometimes known to be stronger than natural fabrics, the sustainable underwear market has come a long way. Check for undies with hemp, wool, or linen for strong alternatives to conventional cotton or synthetics.

A woman looks out a train window as it speeds through the countryside.


WEIGHT

Every piece of extra clothing counts when lugging your suitcase, duffel, or backpack around on a trip. You want to pack lightweight materials, even with underwear. Not only will they keep your suitcase lighter, but they’ll feel better while hiking Machu Picchu, cycling the Rhine River Valley, or simply walking around Tokyo.


COMFORT

Travel days are long, so you need comfortable underwear that doesn’t bunch, twist, ride up, or leave you asking yourself, why do I keep getting wedgies?! A good pair of super comfortable travel underwear is worth the investment. Choose something soft that holds its shape all day long, like a hemp triangle bralette or hipster panties.


ODOR CONTROL

Sweating all day can get a little smelly, so antibacterial underwear is a traveler’s faithful companion. Hemp products are your best bet here, as the fabric is naturally antibacterial. You can climb Table Mountain in South Africa, island hop in Greece, or explore Morocco’s markets and still feel (and smell) fresh at the end of the day.

Three pairs of pastel-colored underwear drying on a clothesline in the sun.


DRYING TIME

Drying time is an important factor for the best traveling underwear, especially when backpacking for multiple days or quickly hopping from one city to the next. You might not have all day to dry, so quick-drying underwear can help speed up the process. Unfortunately, the best quick-drying pairs use synthetic materials, which have their downfalls.

Synthetic materials, like acrylic, nylon, polyester, and rayon, use chemicals throughout the growing and manufacturing processes. And with 60% of worldwide fabrics containing petroleum-based synthetics, many of our closets could include toxic clothing. I know that quick-drying can be the most crucial factor for some trips, but proceed with caution or get creative. I had no shame in drying my bikini underwear on my pack while backpacking in the Olympic Mountains!

A pile of hand washed laundry sits in a bucket ready for drying.

To keep your travel underwear going strong, learn how to hand wash underwear. Gentle washing and drying will help extend the life of your favorite pairs. And with hemp styles, washing makes them softer!


BREATHABILITY

Breathable underwear is essential for optimal travel underwear, as it keeps you dry and airy throughout the day. Moisture accumulating in your nether regions attracts bacteria and microbes, which can lead to infections. Breathable fabrics like hemp are better than synthetics and even better than some other natural materials. According to one study, sweaty polyester attracts Micrococcus bacteria, while sweaty cotton samples contain Staphylococcus. Yikes.


THE BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR

The best traveling underwear will check as many boxes as possible, supporting you through your long days filled with activities. I’ve traveled to the depths of the internet (pun intended) to find the best underwear for any type of trip. These brands and recommended styles will keep you comfy, dry, and odor-free whether you’re eating spicy food in India, sailing the Adriatic Sea, or exploring the Australian Outback.


1. WAMA UNDERWEAR

A man and a woman wearing WAMA underwear stand in front of a travel camper.

I gotta start with my favorite brand—WAMA, of course! WAMA is the pioneer of hemp underwear, offering a unique twist on typical sustainable underwear. Many hemp clothing benefits support travelers, such as more durable fabric, natural sun protection, antibacterial properties, and breathability. But as a bonus, hemp is also soft, anti-odor, and lightweight. You get all the good without resorting to toxic synthetics!

As a reminder, hemp isn’t quick-drying. So although the fabric hits the top mark for all the other important categories, you’ll have to carve out some drying time. I always wash mine in the morning on days I’m staying in one place, then let them air-dry while out sightseeing!


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

Is hemp stronger than steel? Yup! Despite being incredibly soft, hemp is one of the most robust fabrics on the planet, making it the perfect material for travel underwear. It’s breathable and antibacterial—so you never have to worry about getting too sweaty (or smelly) down there, especially on long travel days. Plus, it’s a natural upf fabric, so even if you forgot your swimsuit, you could still lay on the beach knowing your skin’s protected.


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

For travel, my personal favorites are boy shorts underwear, and the racerback bralette. Both are super comfy and offer more coverage, so I can wear them for any travel activity. For men, give the mens boxers or mens boxer briefs a try. Both styles offer full coverage and can transition seamlessly between travel activities.

WEBSITE


2. SMARTWOOL

A pair of men’s underwear sits on a rock in the wilderness.

Underwear is the first layer that sits on your skin, which is why Smartwool specializes in productive layering. Most of the company’s products feature merino wool, which is excellent for travel because it’s moisture-wicking. When a fabric naturally wicks away moisture, it’s better able to keep you dry and regulate your body temperature. That’s why Smartwool uses wool for its base layers.


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

As a traveler moving from one thing to the next in changing weather, nothing quite beats regulating temperatures. I know the horrors of running to the train station only to freeze inside as your sweat dries (not complaining—I love any sort of travel!). You have to go with the flow when traveling, so it’s helpful to have underwear that supports that pace. Plus, merino wool is naturally odor-resistant, very soft, and seamless, giving you non-smelly comfort.


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

For women’s underwear styles, the strappy bra is great for more active days, and the bikini underwear is super versatile. For men, the Merino 150 boxer brief is a good choice for any type of activity. (Note that Smartwool uses a blend of wool and nylon, adding the synthetic material for enhanced durability.)

WEBSITE


3. PACT

Woman standing in comfy Pact travel underwear.

Pact isn’t usually on the best travel underwear radar, but it won a place on my list. That’s because the brand makes its undies with organic cotton sans toxins, which, according to their website, uses 91% less water than conventional cotton. There are many interesting finds in the organic cotton vs cotton debate!


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

Although not moisture-wicking, cotton is lightweight and breathable. Hemp is a better fabric for active days, but these will work for more laid-back excursions or days spent en route. All undies are pre-washed and pre-shrunk and don’t have that annoying, itchy tag.


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

The classic bikinis are an excellent option for everyday wear and will keep you feeling breezy and comfy. The men’s knit boxers have a flat waistband to keep your underwear from rolling or moving. Both options are perfect airplane attire!

WEBSITE


4. ICEBREAKER

A group of people backpacking in the mountains is wearing underwear and clothing from Icebreaker.

Like Smartwool, Icebreaker also uses merino wool to make naturally moisture-wicking and odor-free travel underwear. The fabric helps to keep your body temperature regulated, so it’s great for any type of travel. You can wear it while skiing in the Alps or while sipping coffee in Oaxaca. However, keep in mind that the brand still uses some nylon to keep their undies more durable.


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

The flatlock seam keeps everything in place without chafing, and the brand features collections with ultralight varieties. Wool often gets the reputation of being a heavy material, but Icebreaker has busted this myth! Merino wool is a non-itchy and naturally renewable fabric.


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

For women, the lightweight Sprite Hot Pants mix hipster and bikini styles into one. You get the best of both worlds: coverage over your hips but a breeze on your bum. Guys can stay cool, dry, and odor-free with the Cool-Lite™ collection, which uses a blend of wool, nylon, and Tencel (a semi-synthetic fabric made from wood pulp).

WEBSITE


5. PATAGONIA

Three people stand in an organic cotton field.

Patagonia is a staple in outdoor clothing, making it an excellent option for the best traveling underwear. The company also uses a silver-salt-based odor-control additive to keep their products from smelling after wear. Not washing your clothes can help lower your environmental footprint, but silver technologies tend to have a bad rep. Patagonia uses a particular process that’s much better for the environment while still helping you stay odor-free.


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

Patagonia gives you that extra breathable, moisture-wicking mesh underwear, but they do it with organic cotton and recycled materials. So, yes, they use synthetic nylon, but they’re reducing waste in the process. More than 80% of their products are Fair Trade Certified™ sewn, meaning you can wear them with humanitarian confidence.


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

Try the men’s A/C® boxer briefs, which use a similar blend as Icebreaker. To keep you extra cool, Patagonia combines Tencel lyocell with jersey and recycled nylon/spandex. The women’s Barely line offers bikinis, hipsters, and thongs that keep you dry and odor-free for longer.

WEBSITE


6. BOODY

Men and women sitting on a bench in their Boody underwear.

Boody is another go-to for more casual or simple activities, like hours on a train, car, or airplane. The company uses bamboo viscose, which although requires chemicals, it’s harvested organically in China, creating a fabric that maintains its shape and position even after a full day. The company also uses a small percentage of nylon in the mix, but Boody tests for harmful chemicals with its Oeko-Tex 100 certification to make sure none are too high.


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

Soft bamboo, flat waistband, and seamless? There’s a lot to love here! Plus, you can tick the travel underwear boxes without having to use as much synthetic material. Boody’s underwear is breathable, odor-resistant, thermo-regulating, and moisture-wicking.


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

Boody’s boy-leg brief is perfect for those long-haul flights and days of travel. Wait, girls wear boxers? Of course they do, especially when needing that extra comfort! Men’s long boxers offer leg support down to the mid-thigh, so they’re extra comfy with fuller coverage.

WEBSITE


7. EX-OFFICIO

A man sits on a rooftop looking out over a city while he travels in Ex-Officio travel underwear.

Ex-Officio makes underwear specifically for travel, so you know you’re in good hands here. The brand focuses on quick-drying and breathable fabrics with anti-microbial (aka no odor) treatments. Again, these types of treatments use chemicals, but they get the job done if that’s a priority for you. And for a trip to a humid place like Thailand or Wisconsin (very similar places), then it very well may be!


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

Ex-Officio has upped their travel underwear game by making a super breathable version using mesh fabric, so you get a nice airflow while on the go. Wide bands stop your undies from slowly making their way into your crack and flatlock seams mean no chafing on sweaty days. Sounds like the perfect trip to me!


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

Guys can try the ultra travel-approved Sports Mesh boxer briefs and ladies can opt for the Sport Mesh hipsters.

WEBSITE


8. ALLBIRDS

The storefront of an Allbirds shop.

The company Allbirds looks to nature as its muse and uses renewable materials like plant fibers and wool to create soft, odor-resistant, and moisture-wicking underwear. The brand mixes Tencel lyocell with merino wool and spandex, so you kind of get the best of all worlds. The underwear is soft, breathable, and antibacterial and supports you on your busy, active travels. You’ll be comfy no matter what you do, whether strolling through the French Quarter in NOLA or hiking the rain forests of Costa Rica.


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

The merino wool keeps you dry and your temperature regulated while Tencel makes your undies anti-odor and antibacterial. With a bit of help from spandex, everything stays in place and maintains its shape. Allbrids also uses a Trino™ lining consisting of eucalyptus fiber and merino.


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

Women can do anything in the Trino™ shortie style, which hugs your curves but doesn’t cover too much. Men can try the Trino™ boxer brief, which sits a bit lower on the hip but still covers all the essential parts.

WEBSITE


9. WARP + WEFT

Three women standing with their backs to the camera in tight jeans without panty lines.

Warp + Weft started by making sustainable denim. Once the company perfected the trade, they decided to expand their products to include what you wear under your jeans. Although the underwear has a cotton lining, the fabric itself is modal, a semi-synthetic made from beech trees. Modal produces a naturally breathable material, making it an excellent option for the best traveling underwear.


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

Modal is more absorbent than cotton, so even if you sweat, you’re not going to notice as much. While not wholly natural, it does contain some antibacterial properties and helps to keep odors in check. Plus, it’s very durable and won’t degrade no matter how many steps you take on vacation.


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

Women can last all day in the brand’s bikini briefs, which use double-bonded seams to hide hemlines. The elastic band is hidden, too, so you’ll get expert shaping without any bunching. Men will love the soft and durable boxer briefs, which feature an unbranded waistband. Everything stays in place without pinching or digging into your skin.

WEBSITE


10. LULULEMON

A woman running comfortably in Lululemon underwear and clothing.

Lululemon is a yogi’s paradise, but it’s also a great place to get travel-approved underwear. The brand specializes in managing sweaty yoga classes, after all! All the undies are explicitly made for movement, so you can do almost anything in them without worrying about slipping, bunching, or rolling. Like Warp + Weft above, Lululemon uses modal, although it does blend the fabric with lycra elastane to increase stretchiness.


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

Modal fabric offers soft and breathable undies that are durable and moisture-wicking. It’s also one of the non-synthetic brands that make quick-drying underwear! And with a smooth waistband or seamless varieties, you’ll feel comfortable all day long.


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

The smooth and seamless hipsters offer a perfect amount of coverage without feeling too constricting. If you’re a fan of thong underwear, try the seamless thong to stay breezy. The Always in Motion boxers are naturally breathable, quick-drying, and sweat-wicking.

WEBSITE


11. ORGANIC BASICS

Man leaning against a building wearing Organic Basics underwear.

Organic Basics uses three materials to make underwear: organic cotton, Tencel, or SilverTech™ yarn. The latter fabric is technically nylon but made from recycled raw materials. Using a Polygiene™ silver treatment, the underwear is naturally antimicrobial and kills 99% of bacteria. The company claims that this is the most advanced underwear, and you don’t have to wash it. Sounds a little gross but also perfect for travel!


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT

As a traveler, you can rejoice in all these benefits of Organic Basics underwear: antimicrobial, breathable, lightweight, durable, and thermodynamic (keeps you cool in the summer and warm in the winter). The undies are also wrinkle-resistant and made sustainably.


BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR RECS

Guys can try the Silver Tech boxers to get all those benefits above. Women can also enjoy the perks with sports bras and hipster briefs.

WEBSITE

Boy Shorts

The Perfect Pair of Full Coverage Underwear

 

Hemp Boy Shorts

The Perfect Pair of

Full Coverage Underwear

Two men walk down a street holding drone equipment while traveling.

CONCLUSION: FINDING THE BEST TRAVEL UNDERWEAR

You have lots of choices for brands that supply excellent travel underwear. They don’t all tick every box, but many come close. A WAMA hemp bra or weed underwear will get you as close as possible to the best travel underwear, but choose the material and perks that work best for your trip—every vacation and body is different.

I know we’re all ready to travel again. Where will you go on your next trip? Do you prefer relaxation or adventures? Drop me a comment below!

 

 



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