Uncomfortable underwear is a surefire way to ruin a good workout, especially if it's a pair that traps moisture, rides up, or chafes. Luckily, the best underwear for running prevents all of that — but finding a reliable pair is easier said than done. Before you start shopping, it helps to know which materials and designs are best-suited for exercise.
For starters, you’ll want to buy a pair with moisture- and sweat-wicking technology so you can stay dry throughout your entire run. This will help to keep you feeling fresh and cool, but it'll also help to prevent chafing. Your choice of fabric will be an important aspect here. Some of the most comfortable and quick-drying fabrics are constructed from a blend of cotton, nylon, and spandex, but weave is also important for breathability: Mesh weaves and thinner textures will allow for better ventilation.
After settling on your fabric blend, you'll also want to find a brand that won't ride up or chafe your skin. To prevent this issue, it's important to find underwear with seams that lay flat, so they won't rub and bunch up as you move.
Lastly, think about the type of coverage that makes you feel most comfortable. Although style may be a matter of personal preference, you'll also want to pinpoint a pair that allows you to move with ease. Boyshort, briefs, and other designs that offer more coverage may feel comfortable to some, while other styles such as thongs and bikinis may be a better fit for others; the latter may also help to prevent underwear lines through workout clothes.
With that said, this list of workout-friendly underwear has a little bit of something to keep every runner comfortable, dry, and feeling good.
1. The Best Underwear For Running
ExOfficio's Give-N-Go bikini briefs are moisture-wicking, odor-reducing, and antimicrobial, which makes them an amazing option for avid runners. With a rise that's not too high and not too low, these breathable underwear offer moderate coverage and lay-flat seams, providing a smooth look with no chafing or irritation. Since they're designed for travelers, the mesh material dries in record time, so you won't have to worry about feeling damp or sweaty, either.
Reviewers say: "They fit perfectly, dry quickly, and stay comfortable for over a 9 mile run."
- Available Sizes: X-Small – XX-Large
2. Lightweight Briefs That Provide Full Coverage
The lightweight bamboo material of Warm Sun's viscose underwear is both breathable and cooling, providing ultimate comfort during long runs and workouts. With its brief styling, this undergarment provides full coverage that stays put and won’t bunch up or cut into skin. They come in varying colors and pack amounts, and since each pair is stretchy, odor-resistant, and extremely soft, they might just become your new go-to pair — workout or not.
Reviewers say: "I was looking for panties to use when running or working out. I needed something cool that wouldn’t ride up and these are great."
- Available Sizes: X-Small – XXX-Large
3. These Thongs With Four-Way Stretch
For those who may prefer a little less coverage while running (or for those looking to avoid underwear lines), this active sports thong is one of the best out there. Made with ultra-comfortable, four-way stretch fabric, Balanced Tech is both moisture-wicking and seamless. As a result, they're a great selection for an active lifestyle, and at less than $5 a pair, they're a pretty great deal, too.
Reviewers say: I love them. Awesome for daily wear but also awesome for running.
- Available Sizes: Medium – X-Large
4. Sport Briefs With No Visible Underwear Lines
Thanks to their laser cut edges, Puma's sport hipsters do an amazing job at preventing visible panty lines. They're also made from fabric with moisture-wicking and flat-lock technology, so these underwear will keep you dry and can be worn under just about anything without causing friction.
Reviewers say: "I love them for running. I can wear them under leggings and they don’t show or hug or move." Another buyer wrote, "Super comfortable and invisible even under leggings!"
- Available Sizes: Large
5. A Pair Of Boy Shorts That Prevents Chafing
Thanks to their thigh-length cut, these Runderwear boy shorts prevent chafing while providing breathable and moisture-wicking comfort during your high-endurance workout. With their seamless technology, these undies are practically undetectable under clothing and will not ride up under any circumstance. The ergonomic, tag-free design is also a plus. Get them in pink or black.
Reviewers say: "I ran 9.5 miles in them the other day and they were so comfortable. No chafing, riding up, or discomfort of any kind."
- Available Sizes: Small – X-Large
6. The Best Underwear With A Pocket
If you're tired of having nowhere to put your house key or your headphones, this is the pair for you. Barbra’s travel pocket underwear features a little zippered stash spot that can be used to hold small items during your run. Made of 90-percent nylon and 10-percent spandex with 100-percent cotton lining, these underwear are both breathable and comfortable.
Reviewers say: "The zipper pocket is the perfect size for cash, key or credit cards, making it easy to travel or workout without carrying a purse."
- Available Sizes: Small – 4XL
7. Hipsters That Won't Roll Or Cut Into Skin
Made with 95 percent nylon and 5 percent spandex, Reebok's seamless hipsters are both moisture-wicking and comfortable. The seamless styling prevents them from rolling down, bunching up, or cutting into your skin. They're available in six different multi-pack options, and some even feature upper-leg ventilation holes to keep you cool and dry.
Reviewers say: "I run, hike, weight lift, cycle and do yoga and these undies are great for all the above. Normally undies bunch and chafe when I run but not these." Another wrote, "Comfortable, amazing coverage, no rolling or cutting."
- Available Sizes: Small – X-Large
8. The Most Breathable Bikini Underwear
Comprised of nylon, spandex, and viscose and woven into a mesh pattern, Wealurre's seamless underwear are shockingly breathable. Thanks to their laser cut, low-rise bikini style, these undies are also undetectable under workout clothes and won't chafe or cut.
Reviewers say: "They are very stretchy, breathable, and comfortable. The edges are glued instead of stitched, so they do not chafe, even on long runs, and they are nearly invisible when worn under leggings!"
- Available Sizes: Small – Large
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