What do women wear under board shorts?
February 10, 2007 8:33 PM   Subscribe

What do women wear under board shorts?

Please help me get back out on the beach! I acquired a scar that makes me feel self conscious in a one-piece or bikini. I found a cute pair of board shorts that covers the scar and looks great. I'm not going surfing, but I do want to get in the water (snorkeling, swimming, etc). There's a lot of info out there for men but I can't find much about women. Do the ladies go commando too? Do the shorts bunch up if you don't wear something underneath?
posted by anonymous to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (21 answers total)
Usually women's shorts have a liner, at least the ones I've seen.

I only have a quite short pair, but I didn't experience bunching. I seriously don't see myself ever wearing underwear-like bathing suits again.
posted by loiseau at 8:34 PM on February 10, 2007

You can go commando or wear regular bikini bottoms depending on how much room you have to spare under there... and your preference
posted by paddingtonb at 8:42 PM on February 10, 2007

Whereas none of the ones I've seen (or owned) have lining so I wear underwear underneath. They hae velcro and stitching and stuff that makes them uncomfortable without something underneath, although no bunching either way. A bikini bottom would probably work, and would dry out quickly, but otherwise thinner synthetic type underwear give a better line and less soggyness than cotton ones. If I could find lined shorts I'd probably go commando.

So I think it's up to you. Whatever looks and feels best for your specific situation.

I so love that we're allowed to wear shorts now rather than being expected to run around in what's basically underwear.
posted by shelleycat at 9:09 PM on February 10, 2007

I wear bikini bottoms under mine.
posted by k8t at 9:14 PM on February 10, 2007 [1 favorite]

If you're going in the water, wear the shorts over your bathing suit. Regular underwear will take a long time to dry, and might give you that 'baggy bottom/diaper' feeling when they're wet.
posted by Kololo at 9:19 PM on February 10, 2007

I usually wear board shorts over a bikini. That way I can keep the shorts on and not show off my had-two-kids ass, but I can pretend I could take them off whenever I want to, I'm just too busy having a good time.

I have no trouble swimming in them, but I also sometimes take them off just before I get in the water and then put them on immediately afterward if I'm doing any serious swimming. I've had a bit of time to come to terms with everything that's wrong with that area of my body though.

I have a few pairs of board shorts, all made specifically for women, and none have a liner of any kind. I am pretty sure manufacturers assume they're going to be used as more of a cover-up, since all my husband's board shorts have liners.
posted by padraigin at 9:27 PM on February 10, 2007

I wear mine over a one-piece, because I am a Victorian Lady.
posted by lemuria at 9:44 PM on February 10, 2007 [3 favorites]

I have a pair of Birdwell's (which are made without a liner) and I go commando (both in pools and in the ocean) without any problems at all.

I'd think that wearing bikini bottoms would add significantly to drying time and leave you with a wet butt for longer than is comfortable, but I've never tried it so I can't say for sure.
posted by stefanie at 9:45 PM on February 10, 2007

I wear mine over the bottom half of a tankini (like Lemuria, I'm a Victorian Lady, hee!) both for issues of body modesty and also because, if you surf, any skin you can cover up is going to get banged up a little less.

(I'm a terrible, terrible surfer. I get banged up a lot.)
posted by thehmsbeagle at 9:48 PM on February 10, 2007

Commando, but only after careful review to determine that none of my bits can be revealed to the world.
posted by hindmost at 9:50 PM on February 10, 2007

Micrifibre! That's the word I couldn't remember before. I wear good quality, sporty boyleg style microfibre underpants underneath. I looked for them online but Bendon aren't listing that style any more. Anyway, I found the microfibre is thin without being flimsy, gives a nice smooth line and dries just as fast as the shorts themself. So there's no downside really, just a better fit.

FWIW, I've worn both mid length and knee length shorts, not the really short ones. They tend to be a bit low cut in the waist, which gives more movement when swimming, but it means underpants need to be appropriately cut too.
posted by shelleycat at 10:44 PM on February 10, 2007

Personally, I go for bikini bottoms underneath but really it's whatever you feel like.

NB: Don't go commando under your boardies if you're going to partake in some waterslide action - trust me *blush*!
posted by teststrip at 1:59 AM on February 11, 2007

Commando without a liner. I never had a problem with bunching. Mine were the short girly kind of board shorts so if you're talking about the long ones, ymmv.
posted by wallaby at 3:09 AM on February 11, 2007

I wear a basic bikini bottom under shorts for jumping in rivers and sliding down rock waterfalls. Comfy, and dries at the same rate.

If you have an Old Navy nearby, you can buy swimsuit top and bottoms seperately for what I consider very reasonable prices. So you could get a bottom that fits well under your board shorts, and whatever top you're comfortable in that matchs your shorts (or doesn't, as is your wont!)
posted by nelleish at 10:42 AM on February 11, 2007

Bikini Bottoms are the best option under board shorts as far as drying time and comfort is comcerned. With length, I find that really short ones bunch a little because my thighs aren't overly petite, regardless of what I wear under them. Really long ones tend to get a little uncomfortable because of the volume of water that they manage to drag along with you, but as always YMMV.
posted by cholly at 3:02 PM on February 11, 2007

although i respect your desire to hide your scars, i'll tell you that all my guy friends and boyfriends find my scars sexy/interesting/nothing to hide. and my scars are huge, horrible, question-prompting, unsightly, and very much worth hiding. i went to a lot of effort to conceal them at first; then all my boys convinced me not to care so much any more. they cited tina fey and i finally caved. now i only hide them for special occasions or photos (sally hansen airbrush legs is your friend). i smart-alek the people who ask dumb/rude questions, and come off as tough and mysterious. boy shorts are cute, so go nuts- but i bet many people would truthfully tell you that your scar isn't as unslghtly as you think.
posted by twistofrhyme at 6:13 PM on February 11, 2007 [1 favorite]

I have no shorts advice (being a guy) but I wanted to echo twistofrhyme's comment that showing the scar would probably not turn out to be a big deal.

Me, I have a big scar down one hip and have never felt I needed to cover it up. On the one hand, of course, scars on guys are supposed to be kind of manly; but on the other hand, it's a surgery scar (bone tumor in my teens), so not so much with the manly. I tell everyone it's a duelling scar anyway.
posted by hattifattener at 6:49 PM on February 11, 2007

I go commando under short-boardshorts, and I haven't had any issues. But it may depend on your activity level, all I do is laze around and swim a bit.
posted by Joh at 7:11 PM on February 11, 2007

I always wear a tankini bottom (or a one-piece bathing suit) under my board shorts because that keeps sand from getting into unfortunate places.
posted by nekton at 1:01 PM on February 12, 2007

just a random side note, scars can be incredibly sexy.
posted by ZackTM at 1:02 PM on February 12, 2007

I go commando under my capri length swim shorts (actually a coverup deal, but I repurposed them because I am paranoid re: my fat legs), but I think you should just go with whatever. In my case, I didn't see the point in spending the money on bikini bottoms I was never planning on wearing.
posted by MadamM at 10:40 PM on February 12, 2007

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