If you’re riding a lot this summer, chances are you’re not able to completely escape any angry skin issues in your ‘lady parts area.’ Despite the great care you’re taking—dropping your drawers immediately after a ride, keeping everything clean and dry—saddle sores, ingrown hairs and irritated skin are hard to avoid when you’re sweating up a storm, slathering on sunscreen, and wearing tight spandex for hours at a time since you have so many hours of daylight to ride.
I’ve talked about how to treat a saddle sore and in the book, I talk about how the best way to let your skin chill out is by going commando for as much time as is possible, but what if you need to ride into town, go for a walk, or do something requiring undies?
I just tested out a few pairs of Chaffree briefs, and I have to say, they were a gamechanger for my slightly irritated skin. I’m usually kind of a cheapskate with underwear, and polyester is not making my skin any happier. But with Chaffree’s Coolmax fabric that’s designed to wick sweat, I wasn’t sweating through my underwear on hot days. Plus, it’s seamless and super stretchy, so it was ultra comfy and there were no seams in just the wrong places. It’s also latex-free and antibacterial, so for those with latex sensitivities, bonus, and for those who are seriously sweating in shorts while walking or running errands, it’s great.
And while it’s not the sexiest underwear out there, I’ve worn much worse—it doesn’t feel or look like granny panties. Under my baggy shorts (not baggies for MTB, just baggy, reasonably fashionable shorts that I run errands in on my bike), I usually end up with some rubbing and chafing on the pieces of skin that were already pissed from my actual bike ride, but the underwear switch honestly changed that. To be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was increidbly pleasantly surprised by what a difference the panties made. And for women with more ‘folds’ down there, these are a godsend since they’re much wider than your average panty. Definitely keeps everything dry, sweat-free, and comfortable.
That said, I will stress this same thing I’ve been saying for years: DO NOT WEAR UNDERWEAR WITH YOUR CHAMOIS. I love Chaffree for when I’m doing short rides in street clothes, or just for walking around and running errands after a ride. But don’t think this is a free pass to wear with cycling shorts. I will know, and I will be upset.