Shopping·8 min read

11 Pairs of Comfortable Underwear to Refresh Your Collection

the best underwear for women
Design: theSkimm | Photo: Hanky Panky, Parade, Knickey
March 31, 2022

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If you’ve recently opened your underwear drawer only to realize that most of your pairs are five-plus years old, it’s time for a major refresh. You may be searching for lace or cotton underwear, pairs you can lounge in, or options that make you feel particularly sexy. We hear ya. To revive your collection, we’ve rounded up underwear that’s moisture-wicking, breathable, plus-size, and seamless (among many other things). We’re also highlighting some pairs to wear during your period, plus underwear that packs a sustainable punch. Cheers to your rear. 

Psst…if you’re also looking for new bras, check out our full guide on bra sizing and care here.

Period Underwear

proof black period underwear

Leakproof thongs for the days when you’re not bleeding heavily…

These low-rise microfiber undies mean you won’t have to deal with VPL (visible panty line) when it’s your time of the month. They’re best for light periods, spotting, or can be used as a backup if you’re wearing a tampon. The buttery-soft fabric will move with your body, whether you’re commuting to the office or heading out on a run. Plus, they’re ideal for reducing odors. ($25, Proof)

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modibodi biodegradable period underwear

Biodegradable pee-proof and period undies for moderate to heavy flows…

These keep you covered and help the environment. Aka they prevent textile buildup in landfills. The high-waisted fit keeps you comfy (no wedgies here), while the inner lining absorbs. They’re also great for minor bladder leaks and discharge. If you want to compost the undies, just cut off the waistband and plant ’em in soil. Psst…if you’re looking for even more options, check out our full roundup of period underwear. ($40, Modibodi)

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Sustainable Underwear

pact sustainable organic cotton underwear

Lace-waist thongs made from organic cotton in a fair-trade factory…

See ya, toxic chemicals. Did we mention these pairs of Pact underwear use 81% less water than those made from conventional cotton? ’Cause they do. These come in six color/pattern options, ranging from size XS–XXL. They’re a great everyday option, plus the added bit of lace ups the cuteness factor. ($14, Pact)

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knickey sustainable organic cotton underwear

Mid-rise hipster underwear that packs an environmental punch…

Originating at an organic farm, the cotton goes to an organic ginner that separates the fibers from the seeds. From there the fibers are spun into spools of yarn, continuously being cleaned. Once the yarn lands at a fair-trade factory, everything is dyed without using harmful chemicals, bleach, or heavy metals. The undies are cut and sewn, and then shipped out to headquarters for selling. But wait — there are also no plastic materials used in the packaging. In the end, the entire process is carbon neutral. And you get a pair of undies that are comfortable with no elastic on the leg for digging or squeezing. Win-win. ($17, Knickey)

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parade sustainable underwear

High-rise boyshorts that come in lots of playful colors and patterns…

This mesh underwear is made from recycled fibers that are ultra soft, so you’ll get all-day comfort no matter what. Parade is working to be climate positive by 2025. Plus, they strive to produce garments  from reclaimed, recycled, responsible, renewable, or regenerative materials. And they make limited quantities of pieces so there isn’t waste. Oh, there’s a recycling program for pairs you’ve stopped wearing. Also to note — the underwear is available in a range of sizes up to 3XL. No matter your body shape, there’s a pair that’s great for you and planet Earth. ($13+, Parade)

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Budget-Friendly Underwear

aerie budget underwear

No-show thongs that are easy on your wallet…

These Aerie underwear won’t even show when wearing leggings. They’re stretchy, super smooth against your skin, and lightweight. We recommend them if you feel like anything with a seam causes you to itch. If you don’t believe us, check out the reviews. Customers give them 4.6 stars, with over 170 five-star reviews. ($8.95, Aerie)

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underclub underwear subscription

An underwear subscription so you’ll always have fresh pairs…

If you’re guilty of wearing the same undies from years ago, raise your hand. With Underclub, you’ll fill out a profile detailing your style and fit preferences. From there you’ll get deliveries sent directly to your door. You’ll be able to rate each pair and buy the brands you love. In the end, you’ll be able to save up to 70% on underwear, bras, bodysuits, and more. Cha-ching. (Prices vary, Underclub)

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Plus-Size Underwear

cacique plus-size underwear

Cheeky underwear with a ruched back…

Available in sizes 12–28, these undies are loved by many. They’ve got lots of five-star reviews, with customers raving about their fit. They say the underwear doesn’t roll down and lasts for a significant amount of time. We love the added bow decoration and the playful back. You can show a bit of skin while still getting coverage. ($12.50, Cacique)

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Seamless Underwear

au natural merino wool seamless underwear
Au Natural

Seamless biodegradable underwear that feels like no underwear at all…

Made from merino wool (ahem, a renewable fiber that uses less energy and water to produce than synthetic fibers), these moisture-wicking undies are lightweight, cute, and comfy. Seriously, though — the wool is soft and fine, not thick and scratchy like what you may be imagining. You’ll wanna wear these to morning exercises classes, as you WFH, and during date night. Aka they’re an everyday staple. Bonus: The small biz that makes ’em is women-owned. We’ve tried them and love the fit and feel. ($28, Au Natural)

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bloomingdale's seamless underwear

A V-shaped thong in various skin tone colors…

One Skimm HQ’r loves these undies, saying she’s never felt uncomfortable in them. With allover seamless construction, they won’t bunch or fold. If you’re wearing a fitted dress or pants, these are a go-to option since they essentially feel like a second skin. ($24, Bloomingdale’s)

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Lace Underwear

hanky panky lace thong underwear
Hany Panky

A low-rise classic lace thong available in a handful of colors…

Hanky Panky was started in 1977 and has been a staple in the underwear biz since. Their dedication to comfort and fit remains to this day. One Skimm HQ’r recs this thong if you’re looking for something a bit more exciting. FYI — this piece is designed with stretch to fit sizes 2–12. ($22, Hanky Panky)

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