Best Hiking Underwear for Women in 2019


Arcteryx Phase SL Boy Shorts

Arcteryx Phase SL Boy Shorts

Women’s underwear is more often than not characterized by everything but comfort and functionality; most retailers focus merely on appearance and sex appeal. When you are hiking or doing other sports activities, you will thank yourself for wearing a pair of underwear which is especially designed to enhance your performance by keeping you fresh, warm and comfortable. In this review you will find a selection of the best hiking underwear for women.

We have chosen the best five hiking briefs and hipsters currently available and reviewed them to make your buying decision easier. If you are looking for a sports bra to wear as well, check out our reviews of the best medium-impact or high-impact sports bras respectively.

We regularly update our reviews and selections to always recommend you the best products on the market.

1. Buying Women’s Hiking Underwear – What is important?

Material:

The material must be comfortable and capable of preventing rubbing and chaffing as well as maintaining your body’s natural temperature. Your hiking underwear should be quick-drying and breathable; the latter will add to the feeling of freshness as well as putting a halt to the build-up of bacteria, which is otherwise prone to thrive anywhere warm and even slightly moist. The skin needs to be able to breathe and your private parts are no exception. When it comes to material, hiking underwear tend to belong in one of either categories – either carefully selected synthetic blends (Polyester, Nylon etc. – potentially treated with an antimicrobial agent) or materials where the main, if not single component is Merino wool. Not everybody likes Merino wool, but besides its qualities of being breathable, light and superior in maintaining your body temperature, it is superb in terms of having natural antimicrobial and thus odor-retaining properties –which aren’t washed away eventually as will be the case with treated synthetics. However, Merino wool is more expensive than synthetics and 100% Merino wool garments will dry somewhat slower than synthetics.

Cut:

Hiking underwear should have a cut which feels comfortable wearing even during high-impact activity. They should, however, be snug-fitting to enhance thermal efficiency and avoid chafing as well as irritation. We recommend that you avoid thongs and similar models which do not offer coverage of your behind and thus fail to maintain your body temperature all over. We have picked styles which are relatively “low-waisted” as to keep a modern look – although high-waisted “granny panties” absolutely have their value in keeping your obliques warm in winter.

Comfortable seams:

Hiking underwear should have flatlock seams because they reduce chafing and irritation. Avoid underwear which has vertical seams going down your middle; it will only be a matter of time before it starts irritating you in the front or the back or both.

Care:

The quality of breathable and often antimicrobial materials will make it possible to get hiking underwear quite clean just by hand-washing and drying them, but it might be good to know that all the underwear reviewed here is machine-washable – as long as you keep the temperature low and steer clear of bleach, softeners etc., especially for underwear made of treated synthetic materials which otherwise may lose their antimicrobial properties faster. As hiking underwear should be quick-drying, it is possible to wash your panties by hand in the evening and let them dry overnight – great for a longer hiking trip where you want to keep the weight of your backpack down.

Expert Selections
We only list top-tier products. Read how our selections of best hiking products differ from others here.
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2. The Best Hiking Underwear for Women Review

Best Hiking Underwear for Women

Best Hiking Underwear for Women

The Best Hiking Underwear for Women – List

  1. ExOfficio Give-n-Go Sport Mesh Bikini Brief
  2. Ridge Merino Boy Shorts
  3. Arcteryx Phase SL Boy Shorts
  4. Icebreaker Sprite Boy Shorts
  5. Smartwool Merino 150 Bikini Briefs

Comparison

Feature/Product ExOfficio Give-n-Go Sport Mesh Bikini BriefRidge Merino Boy ShortsArcteryx Phase SL Boy ShortsIcebreaker Sprite Boy ShortsSmartwool Merino 150 Bikini Briefs
Material93% Nylon, 7% Spandex84% Merino wool, 12% Nylon, 4% Spandex70% Phasic SL Polyester, 30% Polypropylene96% Merino wool, 4% LYCRA87% Merino wool, 13% Nylon
CutBriefs Boxer briefsHipstersHipstersBriefs
AntimicrobialYesYesNoYesYes
ExOfficio Give-n-Go Sport Mesh Bikini Brief

ExOfficio Give-n-Go Sport Mesh Bikini Brief

1. ExOfficio Give-n-Go Sport Mesh Bikini Brief

Suitable for:

  • Hiking
  • Mountaineering
  • Trekking
  • Running
  • Backpacking
  • Everyday use

The ExOfficio Give-n-Go Mesh Bikini Brief made it to our list of 10 best gifts for female hikers due the performance of the ultra-light diamond-weave mesh fabric which is breathable, odor-resistant (antimicrobial treatment), moisture-wicking and quick drying, along with the perfect fit, low rise and flatlock seaming of the briefs. No matter which cut or colors you prefer, you should be able to find the ExOfficio Give-n-Go in a version that suits you perfectly as it is available in several models, providing more or less coverage, and even in a more lingerie-like lacy style. It is also possible to buy the Give-n-Go in 3-packs.

 

Pros:

  • Comfortable
  • Design
  • Price
  • Antimicrobial

Cons:

  • /

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Ridge Merino Boy Shorts

Ridge Merino Boy Shorts

2. Ridge Merino Boy Shorts

Suitable for:

  • Hiking
  • Mountaineering
  • Trekking
  • Running
  • Backpacking
  • Everyday use

Ridge Merino Boy Shorts are made of ultra-fine 18.5 micron Merino fibers (84%) mixed with nylon and spandex for better shape retention after wash and wear. Having such a high content of Merino means that you can fully enjoy all the advantages of this natural fiber such as its softness, breathability, natural odor-resistance and its fast drying time compared to for example cotton. Ridge Merino Boy Shorts are available in black and a few other colors. It is also available as a brief model, but this only comes in black.

 

Pros:

  • Ultra-soft fabric
  • Naturally odor-resistant and breathable

Cons:

  • /

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Video

Arcteryx Phase SL Boy Shorts

Arcteryx Phase SL Boy Shorts

3. Arcteryx Phase SL Boy Shorts

Suitable for:

  • Hiking
  • Mountaineering
  • Trekking
  • Backpacking
  • Everyday use

The Arcteryx Phase SL boy shorts are especially constructed for interval activities such as hiking and mountaineering by using the hydrophobic and moisture-wicking Phasic SL fabric – a soft jersey knit of 70% polyester and 30% polypropylene. For your increased comfort, the flatlock seams are placed strategically, the elasticized waistband is wider and the crotch is gusseted with a cotton insert. The Arcteryx Phase SL also comes as briefs; both styles are available in black and lively color combinations.

 

Pros:

  • Comfortable
  • Design

Cons:

  • No antimicrobial treatment
  • Price

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Where to buy?

Also available at:

Campsaver

 

 

Icebreaker Sprite Boy Shorts

Icebreaker Sprite Boy Shorts

4. Icebreaker Sprite Boy Shorts

Suitable for:

  • Hiking
  • Mountaineering
  • Trekking
  • Backpacking
  • Everyday use

The Icebreaker Sprite hipsters are perfect for fans of Merino wool as they contain 96% of the naturally breathable, light and antimicrobial material; only a bit of LYCRA is added for fit and flexibility. The hipsters sit quite low on your hips, but still provide full coverage of your derriere. They also come as briefs (or hipkini as Icebreaker calls them) and even in 100% Merino wool boy shorts version. Some people might think that Merino wool is only for very cold weather, but that is quite untrue as they will keep you cool in summer and warm in winter. However, it might be stated that while Merino wool is as good as synthetics for the summer (except perhaps for the very warmest of days), it is superior to them in the winter as Merino wool is better at maintaining your body’s natural temperature in cold conditions.

 

Pros:

  • Comfortable
  • Anti-odor properties
  • Broad selection of colors

Cons:

  • Price

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Smartwool Merino 150 Bikini Briefs

Smartwool Merino 150 Bikini Briefs

5. Smartwool Merino 150 Bikini Briefs

Suitable for:

  • Hiking
  • Mountaineering
  • Trekking
  • Running
  • Backpacking
  • Everyday use

Smartwool Merino 150 Bikini Briefs are primarily made of Merino wool with just 13% of Nylon for added durability. The fabric is core-spun which means that the Merino fibers have been spun around a nylon fiber core in order not to compromise the soft feel of the material. Unlike the other garments on this list, the Smartwool Merino 150 is only available as briefs. If you want a bigger selection of shape and cut within underwear, you should look to Smartwool’s Phd line. The Smartwool Merino 150 Bikini Briefs come in a variety of both muted and lively colors.

 

Pros:

  • Antimicrobial
  • Broad selection of colors
  • Price
  • One size fits all

Cons:

  • /

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Post Author

Post Author

Laura P.

I loved to climb trees when I was a child – as an adult I use these skills for climbing and scrambling up mountain sides! I always wear a Merino baselayer, sunscreen and my hair tousled.

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