looking for boxer shorts to wear under skirts
June 13, 2017 2:00 PM   Subscribe

I'm one of the many women with "chub rub" (thigh chaffing) issues when wearing skirts. I've been wearing boxer briefs under them for the past few years, which solves that problem but I'm sick of how tight and HOT they feel. I want something loose and cool (that's why I wear skirts!). Specifics on my needs below:

-- I'm quite fat and very curvy.
-- I need a fairly long inseam (7 inches?) to prevent chafe.
-- But I'm also very short and really want a low rise (otherwise they come up to my chest).
-- I prefer woven cotton, but this isn't a must.
-- I'd like a decent waistband.

I've tried women's boxers, which tend to be too short, and slip shorts, which tend to have lousy waistbands and a really long rise (at least in big sizes). I've also tried Bandalettes and boxer briefs, which all feel hot and tight to me.

Please help!
posted by mkuhnell to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (33 answers total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
I'm interested in this myself. A stopgap solution while you wait for a new pair is to use antiperspirant on the thighs, which does well except that you have to reapply if it's very hot.
posted by Countess Elena at 2:10 PM on June 13, 2017 [1 favorite]

I wear wickers women's boxers. I too am fat and curvy and get chub rub, especially in the heat. What I love about these is that they truly do wick, so they don't get too hot, and even though they are made of polyester, they feel more like cotton and aren't slippery. They also have a long inseam. I am short-waisted -- and these do not come up to my chest -- they hit the same place my regular waistband does.
posted by OrangeDisk at 2:13 PM on June 13, 2017

My apologies, I didn't realize the wickers women's boxers were not available at that link, and a quick google suggests they might not be available at all. That's awful!
posted by OrangeDisk at 2:14 PM on June 13, 2017

Allow me to present to you the holy grail of such things (in my humble, formerly chub-rubbed opinion).
posted by kittyb at 2:19 PM on June 13, 2017 [3 favorites]

I realise you have tried slip shirts but have you looked at Undersummers slip shorts in particular?

Their high thigh range in particular meets your 7 inch inseam with a low rise requirements.

They aren't loose but in my own experience anything loose and some tight things bunch up the moment you start to walk.

I have 2 pairs of the old petite shortlette Undersummers that the high thigh Undersummers have replaced and find them great.

They are really light weight and don't make me noticibly hotter even when in the tropics. I also have a pair of the classic style that I don't wear as much. (I am roughly 5ft and a few kgs overweight).

I have also found their customer service excellent when I have had to return things internationally.

I have also used bodyglide with some success although it does need reapplying after a few hours.
posted by poxandplague at 2:30 PM on June 13, 2017 [2 favorites]

As last resort, do you have old leggings you could cut down?
posted by batter_my_heart at 2:36 PM on June 13, 2017 [2 favorites]

These TomboyX have a 9 inch inseam and are on the pricey side, but they are very comfortable.
posted by shornco at 2:45 PM on June 13, 2017

I'm very short, and I use the slip shorts from Target. They're cheap enough ($12ish) that I'd say try them and if the waistband comes up too high just do a super-basic cut & hand-sew job on them.
posted by BlahLaLa at 2:49 PM on June 13, 2017 [1 favorite]

I buy some bicycle style shorts from Amazon that are made out of bamboo. They've got about a 9 inch inseam, their snug fitting but not tight and they do great for the chub rub.
posted by tilde at 2:50 PM on June 13, 2017

I have been very successful finding looser, cotton, low-rise, longer-inseam shorts in the athletic sections of department stores. Something similar in shape to this (although this one is polyester jersey).

Come to think of it, the ones I have may be polyester, but they feel pretty close to cotton.
posted by muddgirl at 2:52 PM on June 13, 2017

Uniclo longpants, if you can find the elusive xl. It exist believe me.
The are not cotton but they are light so not particularly hot, and, the Holy Grail, they do not break apart.
posted by thegirlwiththehat at 2:52 PM on June 13, 2017

I cut down cotton leggings, so they're the perfect length for my dresses. Some of the bike shorts are too short to stop the rub.
posted by fiercecupcake at 2:54 PM on June 13, 2017

Sorry modal not bamboo
posted by tilde at 3:15 PM on June 13, 2017

I wear cotton pettipants from the Vermont Country Store.
posted by jgirl at 3:28 PM on June 13, 2017 [3 favorites]

Ignore the name, but Jockeys Skimees are my very favorite for this. They are cool and offer good coverage in several colors but feel as constricting as other shape wear.
posted by honeybee413 at 4:02 PM on June 13, 2017 [4 favorites]

I've used this .
posted by brujita at 4:15 PM on June 13, 2017 [2 favorites]

TomboyX has been my winner here, if you can wait for a sale or buy from the clearance section they're a bit less outrageous.

Before that I was wearing Thigh Society shorts, which are tighter/hotter than you may want, but could be worth looking at.
posted by Stacey at 4:17 PM on June 13, 2017

If you have not tried silk boxers, they are much cooler than cotton and absorb and release water much more effectively than cotton. I get mine from Wintersilks.
posted by effluvia at 4:31 PM on June 13, 2017

Seconding the Jockie's Skimmies slipshorts (although you may have tried them already, not sure if that's what you are referring to in your question as one you didn't like) but they are pretty much my favorite things ever. Love love love them.
posted by firei at 4:41 PM on June 13, 2017 [1 favorite]

If you or anyone you know knows how to sew on a sewing machine at even a beginner level, drawstring or elastic bloomers are really, really super easy to make. Back when I was but a young phish-touring hippie, I made myself one pair out of cotton muslin for summer and flannel for winter, for exactly the chub rub reasons you cite. A pair of your own pants or shorts will work as a pattern, shorten or lengthen or otherwise alter as desired. Trim with lace? I did =D
posted by soren_lorensen at 4:48 PM on June 13, 2017 [1 favorite]

I wear lightweight silk bloomers -- a pair of knee-length silk pajama pants by WinterSilks that I hemmed to hit mid-thigh. It's knit silk too, more like a super-thin t-shirt material, except silk instead of cotton. No bunching, and very loose fitting.
posted by ananci at 5:21 PM on June 13, 2017

Thirding Jockey's skimmies! They are not tight--I don't even know I'm wearing them. Plus you can get them in moisture wicking styles.
posted by pangolin party at 5:52 PM on June 13, 2017

I've ordered from National before. They're very reasonably priced, so maybe you can try one or two things out.

(still, it reminds me of old school fat lady shops, which makes me vomit in my mouth a little.)
posted by wwartorff at 5:57 PM on June 13, 2017

I like Comfort Choice nylon women's boxers. They are loose-fitting, long enough to actually prevent thigh rub, and cool enough that I can walk 3 miles a day in them in the Texas summer. They are not shapewear and do not squeeze you. Bonus: They are made of slip material and do the job of a slip (as in, preventing skirts from clinging and adding opacity to skirts that might be too see-through). I used to wear shapewear shorts and always had to add a slip to keep skirts from clinging -- and that just got way too hot.
posted by snowmentality at 6:04 PM on June 13, 2017

another fun way to get a bit more coverage without too much heat is to take an old comfy pair of fishnets and cut them off just above the knee
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 10:58 PM on June 13, 2017

I am a big fan of Jockey's skimmies, but I also love Gold Bond Friction Defense stick. It looks like deodorant and it really does work. There are other anti-chafe things out there, but they are more expensive. I still wear skimmies to work, but for the summer, the gold bond stuff is so freeing. I can wear skirts and dresses with no undershorts! On extremely hot and humid days I will reapply mid-day, but usually one application in the am is all I need. Don't over apply it, but apply to both thighs. No rub, and no hot underthings.

If you are like me you will dismiss this suggestion. I only tried it because I found it on sale at target for $2 and thought why not? It's currently a little over $7 on amazon. I hate to sound so hyperbolic, but this product has really changed my summers.
posted by donovangirl at 6:00 AM on June 14, 2017

Seconding the Jockey Skimmees - (I would advise not buying the short version for anyone, they roll up badly).

Also, Secret Shield from Skindua on etsy is REALLY great. I've used it on and off for years.
posted by bibliogrrl at 9:49 AM on June 14, 2017

Size 14 and lifelong chub-rub chick here! I am currently wearing these black Danskin 7" bike shorts under a skirt and they are wonderful. I've had them for about a year, washed them several times, and the waistband/elasticity have not suffered at all. They don't ride up, they have a wide and very secure waistband (won't sag down to your butt, nor will they sit right under your boob line like high-rise shorts), and I wear them probably once a week under dresses/skirts, or by themselves to lounge around the house. They fit well but I don't consider them "tight." Can't recommend them enough!
posted by wintersonata9 at 11:11 AM on June 14, 2017

In my experience, the Jockey skimmers tend to roll at the bottom and creep up at the top. They're also pretty warm. I too use the petty pants, but the shorter version. You could also live dangerously and try men's boxer briefs: they tend to be cooler and they stay put.
posted by answergrape at 12:20 PM on June 14, 2017

I came to recommend the same thing as wintersonata9, or at least, I think these are the same Danskin shorts (for plus size.) For reference, I'm a size 22 in bottoms and think we have very similar feelings about shorts for the purposes of chub rub. I swear I've tried every single slip short or athletic short option out there.

The Danskin do roll up a bit sometimes at the bottoms if they've been worn for awhile and stretched out, but they remain my favorite because they're mostly cotton, they're thick enough that they don't chafe even if I get sweaty, and they aren't shaping AT ALL (i.e. they're very comfortable) but have a substantial waistband. I might not wear them under body con dresses but even for fairly clinging dresses/skirts they aren't visible, despite how substantial they are. Also, they don't make noise when you're walking; the "whisk whisk whisk" noise of my thighs always embarrassed me in an office setting where it's quiet and there's no discernible reason why I should be making noise.

If you do need something slightly thinner and more inconspicuous under tight clothing (though, these DO make the "whisk whisk" noise when walking a bit), I would try to find a pair of Moving Comfort Endurance 7.5" Short in XXL. For some reason I can't find them anywhere online, I think I got mine at a Nordstrom in the plus size department ages ago. They're comfortable and well made, but do offer a bit of shaping if you'd like that sort of thing.

On the contrary to the people here, I absolutely despise the Jockey Skimmies. They are too thin — they've led to horrific chafing on a mildly hot day — and feel constricting, even though I sized up and tried them again, leading them to feel like they were squeezing me and falling down at the same time. Can you imagine that nightmare?! I'm shuddering just thinking about the fabric, which is just a thicker version of pantyhose. We're all built marvelously differently so maybe some of the folks recommending them aren't as fat as me, or are as fat but have differently shaped thighs, but I needed to provide what I feel is a very important counterpoint to those recommending them.
posted by the thorn bushes have roses at 3:00 PM on June 14, 2017

I like the woven cotton culotte slip from the Vermont Country Store. Much cooler than cotton knit or polyester, and one of the few choices that is nice and loose when that's what you're looking for.
posted by artistic verisimilitude at 6:45 PM on June 14, 2017

A lot of the options given, such as skimmies and uniqlo, don't really come in big enough sizes. When I was a little smaller, I did try skimmies, but they rolled a lot and were too tight (I have really big hips and thighs). I am more interested in something looser (though I'm interested in seeing if what some of you said about looser things riding up is a problem for me.

I'd be totally up for trying mens' boxers, but I'm not sure which ones are long enough and have room for hips (Any thoughts? I do prefer to shop online).

I haven't tried any of the glide stick or powder products because I assumed it wouldn't last long -- but I plan to give it a shot. And I'm going to go ahead and order the Undersummers, Zerdocean modal, Vermont country store, and Wiltersilks options. It looks like I might need to learn to sew a little, either the legs or the waistband. Not a bad thing!

We'll see what works! Thanks everyone!
posted by mkuhnell at 6:34 AM on June 15, 2017

Seeing your followup, if you do end up trying a glide stick, BodyGlide is the best of the best, after trying everything from Monistat anti-chafing to Etsy products to specific chub-rub sticks, and I find their packaging to be the least abhorrent too :) It's not as fool proof as wearing shorts, but it's close.
posted by the thorn bushes have roses at 9:15 AM on June 16, 2017

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