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How Often Should Men Replace Underwear?

If you're a man or know a man, you've probably joked about old, worn-out underwear. While it might seem funny, many men hang on to their comfy old pairs* for far too long. 

So, how often should men replace their underwear? The answer is before they reach their expiration date.  And trust me, you'll know when that happens. It's like when you remove the cap from a gallon of milk from the fridge, and your head snaps back from that pungent aroma. While expired underwear may not  cause such a visceral reaction, you'll definitely notice when it's time to replace them. 

Underwear that’s stretched-out, faded, torn, or has more holes than the swiss cheese in the fridge next to that gallon of milk are daily good indicators that it’s long past time to buy some new underwear.

But before I give you a specific timeline, let's explore how to extend the life of your underwear and plan for replacements so you don't need to buy a dozen pairs all at once. Read on to learn more.

1.Invest in Quality

If you know the saying "you get what you pay for," you won't be surprised that it applies to underwear too. No judgment, but if you buy your boxers the same way you buy beer—by the case—don't be surprised if they wear out quickly. I'm not suggesting you spend over $100 on designer briefs, but investing in quality underwear like ALPHX will likely fit better, last longer, and save you money in the long run.

2.  Follow the Label Instructions When Washing Your Underwear

To extend the lifespan of your underwear, it's important to take proper care of them in the washing machine. Start by reading the label, even if it's not your first instinct since most clothes can handle a standard wash. However, underwear needs more attention because different types, like boxers and trunks, are made from various materials and have specific washing instructions. Following these instructions will help your underwear last longer.  For example, if the label says not to use bleach or dry on high heat, and you ignore it, you shouldn’t be surprised to learn your underwear will wear out faster.


That said ,if you are anything like me, washing instructions can sometimes seem like indecipherable hieroglyphics.  So here are some common symbols to look out for and their meanings. 


Don't think that washing your underwear less often will make them last longer. Regular washing keeps them fresh and hygienic, preventing bacteria and odor buildup, so it's important not to skip it

3.Consider Using Washing Bags.  

Here's a tip—don’t laugh. If you’re investing in quality underwear, consider purchasing a set of wash bags. Sort your underwear by color: whites, darks, and colors, and place each group in a separate bag. If your underwear is dryer-safe, you can put the bags directly into the dryer. This will not only extend the life of your underwear but also help you lose fewer socks.

4.Rotate Your Inventory


To extend the life of your underwear, rotate their use. By having a sufficient number of fresh pairs and alternating between them evenly, you can prevent any single pair from wearing out too quickly. The more frequently you wear a pair of underwear, the sooner you’ll need to replace it. Therefore, having several pairs and rotating them will make them last longer. Additionally, investing in high-quality underwear from the start will significantly help in extending their life.


5.Replace A Few Every One-Two Months

Set a plan to replace a % of your underwear assortment every month or two taking into account current condition of your underwear, frequency of wear, how well you take care of them etc with a goal according to most experts of replacing each pair every 6 to 12 months.


When To Buy New Underwear?


As tempting as it may be to stick with your familiar boxer briefs or cozy trunks, it's crucial to know when to buy new underwear to ensure you're always wearing the best option for you. Why is this so important? Wearing the same pair for too long can pose hygiene risks and other problems. To stay clean and smelling fresh, you need to know when it's time to buy more.

A clear sign that it’s time to replace your underwear is wear and tear. Regular use and frequent washing gradually degrade the fabric, leading to holes, fraying, and stretched elastic. If your underwear shows any of these signs, it’s time to get new ones. Even if the only issue is the elastic, it's still significant enough to warrant a replacement. Dealing with underwear that’s falling down and bunching up can make your daily activities quite uncomfortable.

Odor is another important factor. Underwear should not have an unpleasant smell. If your underwear still smells bad despite regular washing, it's time to throw them away.

Additionally, stains are a clear indication that you need new underwear. Enough said on that topic.

How Many Pairs?

It really depends on how many pairs you have in the first place – if you’ve only got two or three pairs, then you’ll need to replace them quickly so you can always wear clean underwear, but if you’ve got many pairs and you’re not going to run out any time soon without having to wash them, you can wait a while.  Having between 14-20 pairs at any given time allows you to rotate them on a two week basis and have a few backups so you're not overly-stressed about doing laundry.  


In any case, choosing a brand like Alphx is a good idea – you’ve got reliable underwear in a wide range of styles from briefs to trunks and boxer briefs to union pants (lounge pants)in sizes XS-XXL. Plus ALPHX gives you the opportunity to select the leg fit that works best for your body. A more personal fit is a better fit.  Whether you buy them now or later is down to you, but buying underwear really should be on your to-do list on a semi-regular basis.


Fun Fact or Urban Legend? 

I am often asked why we refer to pants and underwear in pairs?  


The term "pair of underwear," "pair of pants," or "pair of knickers" originates from the fact that early underwear, worn in medieval times, consisted of two separate pieces. You would pull one piece up each leg and then tie them together at the waist, forming a "pair."


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