The 20 Best — and Most Comfortable — Underwear for Women of 2023

We're filling our drawers with picks from Parade, Cosabella, and Skims.

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most comfortable undies

InStyle / Jaclyn Mastropasqua

Underwear is the first thing we put on, but it's not necessarily something we prioritize when shopping. With tons of styles to choose from, underwear shopping can be a process. The best way to shop for underwear is to narrow it down by style, followed by fabric, fit, and comfort level. Whether you're more into a seamless cut with full coverage, or love a classic cotton brief, there's an underwear style — or two — that is bound to become your next favorite pair.

If your underwear drawer is in need of a little R&R, we've got you covered. By speaking to experts, trying a bunch of pairs ourselves, and researching the top options on the market, we've compiled a thorough list of underwear that meet our fit, fabric, and style standards — that means they must stay in place with excellent breathability, a flattering fit, and a chic design. Read on for everything we love.

Best Overall

Parade Invisible Sculpt Hip Hugger

Parade Invisible Sculpt Hip Hugger

Courtesy of Parade

What We Love: The edgeless, no-show design made from sustainable fabric fits well, regardless of booty shape, and comes in at a digestible price for a high-quality pair.

What We Don't Love: This style doesn't come in neutral tones.

Personal preference plays an important role in selecting the best underwear, but this versatile Parade hip hugger pair suits as many needs as we could find. It's edgeless, has a fantastic size range, comes in lots of colors (including brights and fun prints), and has a reasonable price for a high-quality pair of underwear. We love it because the cheeky fit hugs the hips yet offers reasonable coverage at the back. You still get that no-show look under a pair of tight jeans, without needing to wear a thong. The ultra-silky, smooth, breathable, and form-fitting material, which is made from a blend of recycled fabrics, molds comfortably around the body. And the convertible design allows you to wear them low-rise and mid-rise. We only wish this style came in neutral colors, so if that's what you're looking for, you can choose between a regular thong, high-rise thong, high-rise brief, and high-rise boyshorts instead.

Price at time of publish: $13

Size: XS-3XL | Colors: 12 | Fabric: Recycled yarn, cotton lining

Best Splurge

Natori Feathers Hipster Briefs

Natori Feathers Hipster Briefs

Courtesy of Nordstrom

What We Love: The underwear is lacey and mesh with a flattering, hip-hugging fit.

What We Don't Love: Natori recommends hand-washing this pair, which isn't ideal for our busy lives.

If you want to splurge on a pair of undies, go with something that makes you feel sexy, but is still comfortable enough for everyday wear. We are big fans of Natori and particularly love the Feathers Hipster Brief for its chic yet functional design and low-rise hipster fit. Similar to everything from the brand's feathers collection, the underwear features an embroidered feather pattern appliqued over a stretchy mesh, making it comfortable enough to wear every day even though it moonlights as lingerie. We find that a lot of lace undergarments — especially ones that lean toward lingerie — have itchy hems on the leg openings due to the material, but when we slip into this brief, we forget we even have it on, since the hems along the leg openings don't rub or irritate the skin. However, the sizing could be more inclusive, and you can only hand-wash this pair, so if you're in a bind, this might be a nettlesome task to add to your schedule.

Price at time of publish: $32

Size: S-XL | Colors: 8 | Fabric: Nylon, spandex, cotton

Best Budget

Fruit of the Loom Women's Eversoft Cotton Brief Underwear

Fruit of the Loom Women's Eversoft Cotton Brief Underwear

Courtesy of Fruit of the Loom

What We Love: The price per underwear is hard to beat. Plus, they're made from 100 percent cotton, come in tons of fun colors, are super comfy, and have excellent durability.

What We Don't Love: We love a stretchy pair of underwear, but these are ultra-stretchy so we sized down.

When shopping for underwear, you usually find the best value in a bundle — but value isn't just about the price, it's about the quality, too. This 12-pack of brief-style undies from Fruit of the Loom checks both boxes. The underwear is made of 100 percent cotton fabric that is breathable, comfortable, and — despite the low price point — high-quality with durable construction. We love to sleep in these undies because, on top of being made from breathable fabric, they have a ton of stretch to them, which makes them super comfy. The undies also boast a more traditional brief cut, so they are full coverage with a rise that sits right under the belly button, which adds some additional support while sleeping. And, if you choose to wear these under high-waisted jeans or tight-fitting high-rise shorts, these add a layer of protection between your skin and the denim.

Price at time of publish: $9

Size: 5-14 | Colors: 21 | Fabric: Cotton

Best Thong

Commando Classic Solid Thong

Commando Classic Solid Thong


What We Love: This thong is constructed without elastic or taping, so it stays put without digging into the sides.

What We Don't Love: ​​We wish these undies were sized individually instead of two sizes in one.

There's nothing worse than a thong that twists, folds, and shifts through the day. We love this one from Commando because it's made to stay in place with a form-fitting design that doesn't dig, pill, or bulge, so you can rest assured that your seamless thong underwear will actually remain seamless and not a scrunched-up mess. On top of its slip-resistant design (it doesn't feature pesky elastics or taping), this thong is made from a quick-drying material that has a four-way stretch, giving it more flexibility than your average thong style and allowing it to move with you. The construction and material make it a thong we regularly pull out of our underwear drawer for all-day wear — we love that it has a no-show style that is comfortable under any outfit, and can also keep up with a sweaty after-work exercise class. However, they're not sized individually, so be mindful of the measurements for each size before purchasing.

Price at time of publish: $24

Size: XS/S-L/XL | Colors: 5 | Fabric: Nylon, elastane

Best Bikini

Cosabella Soire Confidence Low Rise Bikini

Cosabella Soire Confidence Low Rise Bikini

Courtesy of Cosabella

What We Love: These undies are sexy yet comfortable with a seamless-like fit and fun color options.

What We Don't Love: We wish the backside didn't have a middle seam.

Bikini underwear that is comfortable and still super sexy? Yes, please. This pair from Cosabella boasts the same incredible fit and comfort of a classic pair of bikini briefs, but with a stylish twist. It's cut from a stunning — and stretchy — mesh material that makes it one of the most lightweight and breathable undies on our list. On top of that, it has a no-show fit, so you don't have to worry about panty lines under tight-fitting clothing. The mesh material molds to the body with smooth and stretchy hems along the top of the brief and leg openings, keeping the low-rise underwear in place, so you don't have to worry about it riding up or giving you a wedgie. It also features a seam up the backside, which accentuates the booty and adds to the overall flattering fit. We personally would love it if the undies didn't have the middle seam, but only from a visual standpoint as we like the look of seamless mesh.

Price at time of publish: $28

Size: S-XL | Colors: 12 | Fabric: Polyamide, cotton, elastane

Best Plus-Size

Knickey High-Rise Brief

High-Rise Brief

Courtesy by Knickey

What We Love: This pair has inclusive sizing, is made of organic cotton, and is comfy with lots of support.

What We Don't Love: We would love to see more skin tone colors.

We love these high-rise brief undies from Knicky for their amazing support, flattering cut, and amazing collection of colors, which range from classic neutrals to trendy hues — though they could expand their range of nudes. The underwear also has an inclusive size range, including plus-size options up to 3X. Aside from sizing, the most impressive thing about these undies is the fabrication: They're made of 95 percent organic cotton with a little bit of stretch, so you feel supported yet comfortable in a pair of underwear that molds to your body with high-rise coverage.

Price at time of publish: $17

Size: XXS-XXXL | Colors: 18 | Fabric: Organic cotton, elastane

Best Period

Thinx For All Super Absorbency Brief

Thinx Super Absorbency Brief


What We Love: These period-proof undies are ultra-comfortable with absorbency equivalent to five regular tampons. They also come in inclusive sizing.

What We Don't Love: We wish this style offered lighter colorways.

There are tons of period-proof panties on the market, but Thinx is the one for us, thanks to its vast variety of underwear styles that can accommodate every day of our period. We tested 46 different pairs of period underwear and after hours of testing, we named this pair as the best you can buy — they're the most reasonably priced, too. With a heavy absorbency level, this pair can hold the equivalent of five regular tampons, so you can wear these regardless of what point you are in your cycle. The mid-rise briefs have a super stretchy and comfortable waistband that fits securely around our stomach but doesn't squeeze us too tight to the point of discomfort. Because it only comes in dark colors, you won't be able to see any potential stains, either — but you'll have to be careful about what pants you wear over it because you most likely will see the dark hues and panty lines.

Price at time of publish: $17

Size: XS-4X | Colors: 4 | Fabric: Cotton, polyester, elastane

Best Seamless

Aerie No Show Thong Underwear

Aerie No Show Thong Underwear

Courtesy of Aerie

What We Love: The raw hem gives these seamless undies a no-show fit, and the soft, silky material boasts all-day comfort.

What We Don't Love: These undies run a bit small, so we recommend going up in size.

When shopping for a pair of seamless undies, a pair that also has raw edge hems is ideal for a no-show fit. These raw hem undies from Aerie are one of our favorites because they are lightweight with a barely-there fit. They are a great choice for wearing under tight-fitting garments, including styles constructed from thinner materials that tend to show everything. The undies are made from a stretchy nylon blend that wraps around the body for a snug and secure fit. And, while many seamless styles opt to camouflage their minimal seams at the hips, we like that the seam on these undies goes up the backside of the thong, which makes it even easier to mask under clothing (especially if the clothing is hip-hugging). To ensure a better fit, we recommend going up in size as these undies run a bit small.

Price at time of publish: $9

Size: XXS-XXL | Colors: 11 | Fabric: Nylon, elastane

Best High-Waisted

Harper Wilde The Highwaist

Harper Wilde The Highwaist

Courtesy of Nordstrom

What We Love: This high-waisted pair of underwear has full-coverage with a no-show look. We also love it for its inclusive sizing and variety of colors.

What We Don't Love: We don't love the way the seams look in the front, especially on some of the lighter color options.

High-rise is one of our favorite underwear styles — and, even after years of wearing them under snug-fitting mom jeans, flowy maxi dresses, and even some skin-tight athleisure leggings, we are still blown away by the amount of comfort they offer when we slip into them. Our top pick for this category is The Highwaist from Harper Wilde. We are big fans of raw hem undies because they are virtually seamless under tight-fitting bottoms, but many of them slip and slide around, resulting in a lot of discomfort (and underwear lines). These high-rise undies are the complete opposite, though. The full-coverage bottoms stay secure around the waist and legs with a fit that is like a second skin and smooth, buttery fabric that boasts all-day comfort. We love them because they offer us a layer of protection under tight-fitting jeans, preventing the backs of buttons and seams from rubbing and irritating the skin on our stomachs.

Price at time of publish: $12

Size: XS-4XL | Colors: 8 | Fabric: Nylon, spandex, cotton

Best Boxers

Skims Cotton Rib Boxer

Cotton Rib Boxer


What We Love: We love the way the material feels and the length of these boxers.

What We Don't Love: We found that the seam around the thigh can run tight and recommend sizing up if you don't like a tight fit.

Made for lounging, wearing under jeans, or in replace of bike shorts, these boxers from Skims are a versatile approach to underwear shorts. While the boxers get a lot of praise for their soft material and comfort, we also love them for their size range, color options, and length. The ribbed material feels ultra-luxe and is made from stretchy cotton fabric that fits snugly against the body, like a good pair of bike shorts only they are more breathable. And, the size options range from XXS-4XL, making them one of the more size-inclusive picks on our list. The high-rise boxer shorts are also the perfect length, with hemlines that reach just above the mid-thigh area. With that said, those who prefer a looser fit might want to size up, as the seam around the thigh can feel a little tight.

Price at time of publish: $32

Size: XXS-4XL | Colors: 5 | Fabric: Cotton, spandex

Best Lace

Hanky Panky Signature Lace Original Rise Thong

Hanky Panky Signature Lace Original Rise Thong

Hanky Panky

What We Love: The lace is super soft and not itchy, unlike some other lace panties.

What We Don't Love: We wish it was available in individual sizes.

In our experience, some lace thongs can have an itchy and uncomfortable feel (especially around the hips and crotch area), but these Hanky Panky undies are buttery soft, stretchy, and don't dig into your hips. They are also made of breathable lace material with a 100 percent cotton gusset lining, making them a good option for hot and sweaty summer days. They come in tons of great colors, ranging from classic neutrals to more vibrant hues, so there is a lacey thong for everyone. Though they aren't seamless, we have found that they work well as no-show underwear under thicker fabrics like denim or canvas, and they are barely noticeable under black leggings and bike shorts, too. It only comes in one size, so while they do stretch a significant amount, they might not be accommodating for all sizes.

Price at time of publish: $24

Size: One size | Colors: 14 | Fabric: Nylon, spandex, cotton

Best Brief

Lively The All-Day Brief

Lively The All-Day Brief

Courtesy of Lively

What We Love: The sizing is inclusive

What We Don't Love: The seams might show under tight-fitting bottoms

We are obsessed with our Lively bras and can attest that the brand's underwear is just as great — especially where the All-Day Brief is concerned. We love the inclusively-sized underwear for its soft and comfortable material, stretch, and high-rise design. What makes this underwear so fantastic is that it has all of the benefits of a classic granny panty (think: full coverage, mid-rise style, and breathable fabric) but in a more elevated and sexy style. These undies are also super supportive with form-fitting leg openings and a waistband that fits well around the stomach but doesn't dig into the sides.

Price at time of publish: $15

Size: XS-3XL | Colors: 3 | Fabric: Rayon, spandex

Best Cotton

ThirdLove Everyday Cotton Mid-Rise Brief

Everyday Cotton Mid-Rise Brief Stock-Up Bundle

Courtesy by Thirdlove

What We Love: These cotton undies are breathable, have inclusive sizing, and the quality is comparable to more luxury-priced underwear.

What We Don't Love: They run a bit small, so you might need to size up.

Thanks to its breathable and lightweight fabrication, we love how soft and comfortable this cotton underwear from Third Love is. The mid-rise pair stays put and stretches with your body, too, while also gently smoothing the area to ensure a streamlined fit. These undies also boast tons of coverage for anti-thong wearers, but you won't need to worry about panty lines showing through your jeans. We do recommend you go up a size in this pair, as they run on the smaller side.

Price at time of publish: $14

Size: XS-3X | Colors: 19 | Fabric: Cotton, spandex

Best Workout

Alo Airbrush Invisible Cheeky



What We Love: Regardless of your workout and athleisure, this panty will move with you as you exercise, and refuse to roll down.

What We Don't Love: It is labeled as cheeky, but fits more like a thong, and if you don't like the fit, they're final sale.

We all hate seeing underwear lines underneath a pair of skin-tight leggings, but Alo Yoga has you covered. Made from a lightweight, second-skin-type fabric (that's also odor-resistant, FYI), these lightweight panties move with you without bunching up, rolling down, or showing during your workout — even the most intensive. And because it is made out of Alo's airbrush fabric (which was designed specifically for outdoor activities), it should feel just as soft as silk and as airy as cotton. Technically, this pair has a "cheeky" fit, but it fits more like a thong. (The brand's thong in the same fabric just has a thinner waistband.) If that isn't your style preference for the gym, think twice before buying because these are final sale.

Price at time of publish: $18

Size: XS-L | Colors: 8 | Fabric: Nylon, spandex

Best Boy Short

SKIMS Cotton Jersey Boy Short


Courtesy by Skims

What We Love: Perfect for lounging or wearing as a set, this boy short offers the right amount of to wear all day, to bed, and beyond.

What We Don't Love: There are few color options to choose from.

Styled and named after men's underwear, boy shorts offer a longer fit through the thigh than most other women's underwear. But because they're typically made from breathable material — like 90 percent cotton for this pair from Skims — your legs won't become too warm or feel constricted if worn under something on the tighter side. Despite the more masculine shape, it still looks flattering around the waist, hips, and behind, too, even though it is full coverage. Depending on your body shape, the shorts will hit just below your bum. We do wish there were more color options, though.

Price at time of publish: $22

Size: XXS-4X | Colors: 6 | Fabric: Cotton, spandex

Best Cheeky

CUUP The Bikini

Cuup The Bikini

What We Love: The delicate fabric feels (and stays) soft with every wear.

What We Don't Love: Although flattering as a concept, the v-shape back hits too low.

If you're not into full-coverage panties but still can't quite get on board with a thong, consider a cheeky, which will provide a reasonable amount of coverage at the back, yet have more flexibility when it comes to how they're worn. This pair has a flattering v-shape above the behind, so when you wear these high-waisted, the legs are instantly lengthened. You can even wear them low across the hips, and they will still maintain this v-shape without leaving a dent at your sides. The modal fabric keeps it soft and breathable, while the antimicrobial bamboo blended within the gusset wicks moisture for all-day comfort. But depending on your behind, the v-shape back might hit too low for personal preference.

Price at time of publish: $20

Size: XS-3X | Colors: 23 | Fabric: Modal, elastane, bamboo, spandex

Best Breathable

Bombas Women's Cotton Modal Hipster

Bombas Women's Cotton Modal Hipster

Courtesy of Bombas

What We Love: The modal-cotton blend makes this piece super soft to the touch and breathable to wear.

What We Don't Love: It might leave a panty line underneath tighter clothes.

You might have read breathable as a descriptor throughout this list, but this pair from Bombas, crafted from a modal and cotton blend (two super lightweight materials), takes the cake as the most breathable option. The pill-free fabric feels soft to the touch, while also allowing air to easily circulate through the fabric more freely, keeping you dry and sweat-free. We like the full coverage fit topped with charming lace on the waistband, but even though it is designed not to budge or ride up, you might still see a faint panty line if worn under a tight pair of pants. However, we think the comfortable fit is worth the buy alone.

Price at time of publish: $22

Size: XS-2X | Colors: 4 | Fabric: Tencel modal, cotton, spandex

Best Shaping

Spanx Everyday Shaping Panties Brief

SPANX Everyday Shaping Panties Brief


What We Love: These hugs the tummy and behind for a subtle shaping effect without needing additional shapewear.

What We Don't Love: If you bend down, the waistband has the tendency to roll down at the waist.

For those interested in everyday shapewear that gives you a little support, try this underwear from Spanx, which features a targeted waistband that smoothes your tummy in a gentle but effective way. While it is a thick band, Spanx promises the garment is pretty much "invisible" underneath clothing because of its minimal stitching. And let's not forget the back — it hugs the behind without a visible panty line, giving your butt a smooth, shapely appearance. Spanx does claim that the waistband will stay put all day, but we found that it actually rolls a tiny bit, especially with some of the larger sizes, when bending.

Price at time of publish: $20

Size: XS-3X | Colors: 7 | Fabric: Nylon, elastane, cotton

Best No-Show

Chantelle Lingerie Soft Stretch Seamless Hipster Panties

Chantelle Lingerie Soft Stretch Seamless Hipster Panties

Courtesy of Nordstrom

What We Love: Thanks to the bonded sides, the underwear will mold to your body for additional comfort and a VPL-free fit.

What We Don't Love: We wish it were more size-inclusive, as it is online available in one size.

Anyone looking to avoid panty lines without reaching for a thong should consider this no-show hipster from Cosabella on your next night out. With bonded seams bonded at the sides, this stretchy, mid-rise panty contours to your body for a true fit that won't be noticeable when wearing tighter clothes. We appreciate how lightweight the material looks and feels, but the polyamide fabric also wicks away moisture, making it a great choice for warmer weather as well. And while we understand the pair will stretch plenty, we wish the brand offered more than a one-size-fits-all option.

Price at time of publish: $20

Size: One size | Colors: 13 | Fabric: Polyamide, elastane, cotton-lined gusset

Best Maternity

Bumpsuit The Maternity Support Brief



What We Love: It is designed to grow with you as you grow, so you're able to enjoy all-day support in every stage of your pregnancy.

What We Don't Love: It comes in only one neutral, skin-tone-like choice, which is not inclusive.

The Maternity Support Brief from Bumpsuit takes the pressure off your belly, supporting your stomach throughout the duration of your pregnancy and expanding as you grow. (You can even wear this pair post-partum.) We appreciate that the band features a silicone strip to keep the underwear from falling down as well, but it won't dig into your midsection or cause any irritation. Combined with the seamless leg opening, which also prevents any potential chafing around the leg area, you should be comfortable in this pair all day long. It only comes in two colors, though, (beige and black), so not everyone will be able to find a shade that matches their skin tone. We hope they expand the range soon.

Price at time of publish: $48

Size: XXS/XS-L/XL | Colors: 2 | Fabric: Nylon, spandex

What to Keep in Mind


"First and foremost, the fit is important for comfort," explains Giulia Galgani, assistant director of training at Intimissimi. Being extra mindful of the sizing guide and customer reviews helps ensure a well-fit pair of undies, and ultimately how comfortable you'll be throughout the day. A helpful tip Katie Sturino, the author of Body Talk, uses is her Roll Test. "The roll test is a series I post on my Instagram where I bend over and see if my underwear rolls. This is the key to finding a great pair of comfortable underwear because if it rolls when you simply bend over, you’ll know it’s not going to be supportive to wear every day. "

The leg hole size and amount of stretch in a pair of underwear are also key factors in determining a good fit. Go for pairs that stay in place, feel supportive, and don't pinch, ride up, or slip. Some panties even have elastics, extra stretch, and thicker waistbands to prevent digging, indentions, and underwear lines for added comfort.


Galgani suggests looking to natural fibers, like cotton, for an easy pair that's low maintenance yet comfortable to wear thanks to how breathable it is. (She also likes silk, but given how difficult it can be to clean, we suggest saving that for your lingerie, rather than everyday pairs.) For something particularly lightweight and breathable, modal or Tencel, which you can find in pairs like the Bombas underwear. And if you'd prefer a pair that looks particularly cute, try out a lace pair (we love Hanky Panky) that will look as good as it feels.


Similar to bra shopping, there are many different types of underwear styles to choose from — including thong, bikini, high-waisted, cheeky, brief, boxers, g-strings, and seamless. So, depending on your preferences or needs — say, you prefer something full coverage or want a style that's extra comfy for lounging — shopping by style is a great place to start. To give you an idea of what to consider, Galgani recommends "cotton thongs or briefs for lounging, seamless thong, and string thong styles for working out, and cheeky panties for a mix of comfort and sexiness."

Your Questions, Answered

What underwear fit is the most comfortable?

It depends on your preference. While some women can't stand how a thong feels — though, we think almost everyone will love the weightless feel of the Commando classic thong — others will wear only thongs. Briefs in a soft material, like lightweight cotton or modal, that molds to your body universally will feel good, especially if they fit properly (i.e. not too tight), and a cheeky fit will also give you a little less coverage than a brief — some are even closer to the fit of a thong — but remain just as well-fitting. We suggest thinking about your favorite pair of underwear now and leaning on that cut and style to guide the rest of your shopping.

How to choose the right size and style of underwear for women

While selecting the right size depends on one's measurements, Pierce says that "things like body shape, wearability, and the needs of customers and their lifestyle" are all equally important to consider when finding the right fit. You don't want the leg holes to pinch your thighs, leaving marks, or for the band to dig into your stomach, but on the other end of the spectrum, you should never have to

"When it comes to style, this is all about how the customer will be most comfortable, whether they are looked for comfort, confidence, sexiness, etc," she explains. "We recommend cotton thongs or briefs for lounging, seamless thong and string thong styles for working out, and cheeky panties for a mix of comfort and sexiness." If you like to wear high-waisted pants, you can even consider high-waisted underwear. Or, perhaps you wear thong styles with any and all outfits. Ultimately, it is up to personal preference.

Why Shop With Us

Jessie Quinn is a California-based freelance writer, and Madison San Miguel is contributing writer for InStyle. Together, both researched the most popular underwear on the market right now, and consulted experts, like Giulia Galgani, assistant director of training at Intimissimi, and Katie Sturino, the author of Body Talk, as well as spoke with the staff to gain more information about what pairs fit best and feel most comfortable for all occasions.

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