Boxers are going from the sheets to the streets with stylish ready-to-wear shorts inspired by the classic underwear style. A crossover between underwear and loungewear, boxer shorts vary in style, with some mimicking the traditional loose-fit, button-fly style and others made to fit under clothing in a more form-fitting boy shorts kind of way.
With so many designs and styling options to choose from, we spoke to two underwear experts, Katie Lopes, co-founder of Stripe and Stare, and Jennifer Zuccarini, founder and CEO at Fleur du Mal, to learn where one should get started with the boxer short trend. Beyond that, we combed the internet’s dozens of styles—ranging from actual underwear and lingerie to streetwear shorts—to find the best ones.
Meet the Expert
- Katie Lopes is the co-founder of Stripe and Stare.
- Jennifer Zuccarini is the founder and CEO at Fleur du Mal.
Keep reading for Byrdie’s picks of the best boxers for women.
Free People Sunday Morning Boxer Shorts
These boxers from Free People are a good mix between lounge-worthy sleepwear and ready-to-wear shorts with their relaxed fit, cotton fabric, and cuffed detailing. These qualities make them both versatile and comfortable and therefore, perfect for lounging around the house, running errands, or taking a nap. On top of that, they come in 21 different colors and prints, including a big mix of plaid styles.
Material: 100% cotton | Size Range: XS-XL
Price at time of publish: $28
Uniqlo Woven Striped Boxers
For a budget-friendly pair of boxers you can wear inside and outside of the home, there are the Woven Striped Boxers from Uniqlo. They’re made from cotton and are held up with a stretchy elastic waistband, so the shorts are breathable, comfortable, and the perfect entry into the boxer fashion trend without a big investment. Pair them with a fitted tank top and an open button-down top.
Material: 100% cotton with polyester/spandex elastic band | Size Range: S-3X
Price at time of publish: $8
wirarpa Women's Boxer Briefs
The wirarpa Boxer Briefs from Amazon are a brief-infused boxer for those looking for a snug fit. This five-pack comes in a variety of color options, including neutral hues like black and white. Highly recommended by Amazon customers, the soft, breathable, and lightweight shorts are considered “all-purpose” and have kept wearers comfortable through everything from lounging to exercising.
Material: 95% combed cotton, 5% spandex | Size Range: S-3X
Price at time of publish: $26
Everlane The Linen Boxer Short
If you’re unsure about the boxer short ready-to-wear trend, we recommend starting with a pair of linen shorts, which feel a little less like underwear and more like a stylish pair of shorts. These come in a fantastic color range, so you can choose the one that best suits your style. Pair them with a cropped white tank and open button-down, or make it a matching set with The Linen Button-Front Crop Tank.
Material: 100% linen | Size Range: XXS-XL
Price at time of publish: $50
Knix Micro Modal Essential Boxer Brief
For the most breathable pair of fitted boxers, you want something made from modal, like this boxer brief style from Knix. They’re made in a ribbed material, made to go undetected under clothing. The perfect pair of underwear for skirts and dresses, these boxers are soft, breathable, and comfortable enough for long wear.
Material: 90% modal, 10% spandex; 84% modal, 8% seaweed, 8% spandex gusset | Size Range: XS-4X
Price at time of publish: $30
EBY Washable Eco Silk Shorts
Silk boxer shorts feel ultra-luxurious but can be a pain to care for since silk often requires hand-washing or dry cleaning. EBY solved this shoppers’ dilemma by crafting a low-maintenance alternative. Its silk shorts (actually made from recycled polyester) are washable and versatile enough to pass not only for loungewear but for ready-to-wear, too. And you’d never guess they’re not silk.
Material: 100% recycled polyester | Size Range: XS-XL
Price at time of publish: $42
Thinx Period Pajama Sleep Shorts
You don’t need tight-fitting period underwear to keep leaks at bay. Case in point: These Thinx boxer shorts feature that flowy style you want in a boxer with an absorbency the brand claims is equivalent to five regular tampons. They achieve this with the help of built-in bikini underwear designed with the brand’s extended gusset for leak protection.
Material: Modal, spandex, cotton, polyester | Size Range: XS-4X
Price at time of publish: $150
SKIMS Boyfriend Boxer
Whether you’re looking to lounge or swap out your bike shorts, these longline Boyfriend Boxers from SKIMS will likely do the trick. They’re inspired by a classic fitted boxer short and made with a lightweight, stretch jersey material and a comfortable waistband that makes them great for layering under clothing. Still, don’t let their fabric fool you, as they’re still durable enough to wear solo when running errands.
Material: 47% cotton, 48% modal, 5% spandex | Size Range: XXS-4X
Price at time of publish: $26
Alo Icon Ribbed Boyshort
Boyshort lovers will fall for Alo’s Icon Ribbed Boyshort. Their length and light weight make them perfect for lounging and layering under clothing. Plus, they’re made from a super-soft jersey material that hugs the body and boasts a ton of comfort.
Material: Ribbed jersey | Size Range: XS-L
Price at time of publish: $24
Comme Si La Boxer Classica
The OG boxer style is a pair of durable and structured cotton shorts. This pair from Comme Si is just that. The boxers are made from Italian cotton poplin and nod to the timeless men’s undergarment style with a truly boxy silhouette, ruched waistband, and button-closed fly. Wear them on their own with a cropped tank instead of your usual summer shorts, as loungewear, or under your favorite baggy jeans.
Material: 100% Italian cotton poplin | Size Range: XS-XL
Price at time of publish: $65
Reboot The Boxing Short
Reboot’s silk boxing shorts pay homage to the style’s sporty origins in their resemblance to the bottoms professional boxing athletes wore in the ring. Today, these stylish athleisure shorts are the perfect dressy pair of boxers but can still work well for workouts, too.
Material: 100% silk charmeuse | Size Range: XS-XL
Price at time of publish: $218
Fleur du Mal Eyelet Embroidery Short
Lingerie meets boxers with these lacey shorts from Fleur du Mal. The floral lace boxers are a super sexy way to rock the undergarment trend. Wear them to bed or as a part of an outfit, perhaps with a cropped ribbed tank and ballerina flats, for your next run to the post office.
Material: 90% cotton, 10% polyester | Size Range: XS-L
Price at time of publish: $195
Hommegirls Ticking Stripe Boxer Shorts
The most classic boxer shorts look comes in the form of a striped pair, like these from Hommegirls. Beyond the subtle striping, they’re made with cotton and take inspiration from menswear with their low rise and relaxed fit. Since they’re so ultra-breezy, they make for a must-wear on hot days.
Material: 100% Italian cotton | Size Range: S-L
Price at time of publish: $55
Hand Over Ex-SummerAffaire Jorge Boxers
Your search for the best plaid streetwear boxers ends here. These Hand Over shorts are all you could want in streetwear-inspired boxer shorts with their classic construction and funky mixed plaid patterns. Wear them with a cropped hoodie for your next off-duty look.
Material: 50% cotton, 50% polyester | Size Range: 0-3
What to Look for in Boxers
“If you want to style boxers more as ready to wear, I would go for something that’s not plain white, which [runs the risk of looking too much] like actual boxers,” says Zuccarinil. “Black or a bright color or print can be fun to style.”
A Closed Fly
For streetwear-style boxers, Zuccarini says to be extra mindful of the fly. “Some boxers have an opening at the fly for accessibility,” she explains. “Sit down and make sure that it doesn’t unexpectedly gape open.”
“When looking for boxers, it’s important that they have just as much breathability as other underwear styles,” Lopes says. Whether you’re wearing them under clothing or on their own, this will keep you feeling fresh.
What are boxers?
Boxers are typically considered looser-fitting shorts with an elasticized waistband inspired by traditional men’s boxer shorts. They’re also most traditionally worn as undergarments, but some styles—especially the more loose-fitting silhouettes—can be dressed up as streetwear.
What are some formulas for styling a pair of boxer shorts?
“I love boxers worn with an unbuttoned oversized men’s shirt with a bra top underneath or mixed with a boxy blazer and cropped top,” says Zuccarini, who also more casually wears the shorts style over her swimsuit to the beach with sneakers. Lopes says she likes wearing boxers with a button-down, too, especially when she’s bored of more figure-hugging biker shorts. Otherwise, to embrace ’90s trends, she recommends wearings boxers “under low-rise jeans with a crop top” or more casually with a loose button-down shirt and sneakers while working from home or dog-walking.
Why Trust Byrdie
Contributing writer Jessie Quinn has a bachelor’s degree in fashion journalism from Academy of Art University. At Byrdie, Jessie covers everything from unique jewelry accessories to the latest denim trends to the best shoes for any style. When researching the best boxers, Jessie considered a range of styles, including ones you can wear as undergarments or streetwear. She looked at fit, breathability, and design to determine the most superior options and, as a result, put together a list of the best boxers.