Ladies, it is time to ditch the cotton. When it comes to traveling, cotton undies are not your friend. They are slow to dry and quick to smell, an unfortunate combination. A big part of traveling is learning to get by with less, so it is common to “skimp” on certain things. If there is one thing you should never skimp on when traveling it is underwear. And no, not all underwear is created equal.You want to make sure that underwear is breathable, lightweight, quick-drying and has anti-odor or anti-microbial properties. Ideally, you should be able to wear your travel underwear for a couple of days without smelling too badly. The longer you can wear them, the less laundry you will have to do, and the less laundry you have to do means the more time you have for exploring your destination.
We have given all the top brands the test and worn them for a couple of days straight to see how they hold up. Based on my firsthand experience with each brand, here are my top three picks for the best travel underwear on the market.
Smartwool has produced an awesome NTS (next to skin) layer for all you female travelers out there. The micro 150 bikini is super comfortable and is 96% Merino wool, so it wicks away moisture. My favorite thing about them is that they are machine washable and dryable (tumble dry low). Most wool underwear can’t be dried in the dryer, but Smartwool gives you the flexibility to save some time by popping them in the dryer. However, if you are traveling and do not have access to a washer and dryer, these undies also wash easily in the sink and air dry within a couple of hours. I have read some reviews that have stated that the Smartwool 150 bikini is not very durable, but so far I have had no issues, and my pairs have held up just fine.
Just like the other undies mentioned in this post, Ibex offers another great option for travel underwear, the Balance Brief. Ibex’s Balance Brief is made of a lightweight blend of 72% Wool, 22% Nylon, and 6% Spandex. The wool offers anti-microbial benefits that keep odor away, and the Nylon and spandex give you more stretch than some of the other underwear options I’ve listed. If you prefer a stretchier, form hugging fit, you may want to choose Ibex over the other travel underwear options listed in this post.
When you google “travel underwear” Ex Efficio will be the first brand that will come up in your search. If you are not so into the whole wool underwear thing; you can opt for Ex Efficio undies which are made of a blend of nylon and spandex. They are soft,moisture wicking and quick drying. Exofficio has created AEGIS Microbe Shield® antimicrobial treatment to help control odors. These undies are great for travel, as they don’t take up a lot of space and dry quickly. Although Ex Efficio undies are often the go-to pick for travelers, they are not my favorite. I find that they start to smell quicker than my wool ones. On the other hand, they are cheaper than wool undies, so take your pick!