Let me let you in on a tiny secret that can eliminate feminine odor in an instant.
The key word is underwear.
Understated and out of sight, the underwear is often looked over as one of the primary causes of our womanly odor.
But did you know that something as simple as choosing the right cut and function of a great pair of undies can make an instant smell difference?
I don’t know about you, but I had some really bad personal hygiene habits growing up.
Moisture And Feminine Odor
Ready for some TMI? Not wiping dry after peeing is one such cardinal sin.
The problem with not wiping dry is that it leads to a moist environment down there, where bad bacteria (they exist naturally all over our body) can thrive and populate.
Naturally, that piqued my body’s defense mechanism and I started having more vaginal discharge as my body tries to get rid of the extra bad bacteria.
Then I liked getting fancy underwear, the boring cottons ones just won’t cut it.
Turned out a lot of the undies I liked were made of fabrics that aren’t exactly breathable. Which meant that moisture was not getting out.
Wet and wetter.
My undies would be moist and uncomfortable to wear by the end of the day, and extremely stinky to boot!
That was when I started to think of the connection between our underwear and how it precipitates foul smells down there.
So I started experimenting with different cuts and different underwear materials to see if it makes a big difference.
What Makes A Good Underwear?
Here is what I have found that worked really well for me and would like to share with you today.
The Right Cut
There are so many cuts of underwear in the market – bikini, briefs, boyshorts, hipsters, thongs (just to name a few!)
Let’s get to the heart of a great cut to prevent feminine odor – get undies that won’t cut into you.
Puns aside, if you wear underwear that is of poor form and cuts into you, what happens is that blood circulation is affected.
Not only is it painful when your undies cut into you, studies have shown that poor blood circulation have been associated with many uncomfortable gynecological problems like pelvic congestion syndrome.
If the waist bands or the thigh bands are too tight, it can also potentially cause chafing and inflammation of your skin.
Not only it is uncomfortable, too tight a fit can cause you to perspire more, upping the moisture content for the environment down there.
Hence, getting the right cut is not just comfortable for you the wearer, but also can help improve your overall health.
Now that we know how the cut can affect our health and create potential problems/odors, let’s learn a bit more about the types of undies cuts.
There are seven basic styles of underwear –
They are like boxers for females. More rectangular in shape than most panties, boy shorts usually extend onto the thighs.
When made form fitting and of the right fabric, you can actually say bye to visible panty lines even in a catsuit!
The longer boy shorts are great for sleeping or just lounging around the house.
The boy short cut is right up my alley for comfort and function.
Also known as granny pants, if you buy the full waist version, covering the whole butt with a high waistband. Perfect for tummy protection during those cold nights. But that’s another story for another time.
Luckily for the fashion conscious, briefs are now available in low rise versions so you get the comfort without having to compromise the height of your waistline.
Briefs are, in my opinion, equally comfortable as boyshorts, and well made briefs basically eliminate wedgies, that are more common in boyshorts.
Oh god, please don’t get me started on this. I have nothing against the French, but french cuts are UGLY.
Think Jane Fonda high cut aerobic underwears. Yup, that’s the french cut.
In full professionalism, the problem with french cuts is that the thigh cuts awkwardly across your pelvis, which can make for a pretty uncomfortable wear, even though it may interfere less with blood circulation.
Also called hip huggers, these undies sit around the hips, about give or take two inches from the waist.
These undies are great for low waist jeans, but most people seem to buy a size too small, and butt cleavage pops unwittingly before your eyes when others bend down.
Not the most comfortable wear available in the market.
Typically feature very high cut leg holes, with waistbands sitting even lower than hipsters.
These may be great for those low waisted jeans, but the position of the waistbands as well as the partial coverage of your butt can sometimes interfere with blood circulation and give rise to the occasional wedgie.
Your kind of undies when butt coverage is not something you want others to see. Catwoman suit, here you go!
Similar to the bikinis, the waistband sits lower, about three inches down from your natural waist.
Featuring no rear coverage, the G-string gets my head scratching every single time.
Who on earth willing walks around with a wedgie? If VPLs are a concern, just get really form fitting boyshorts and you are golden.
And on a more serious note, for your feminine health, I would advise against the G-string, or C string because the piece of fabric covering you touches the anus and can potentially bring bacteria from the anal region to the front where your vagina is.
Seriously, the distance between the two holes are really not that far apart.
In terms of comfort, the briefs and boyshorts get the nods for most comfortable cuts for undies.
The rest of the basic seven styles may provide more in terms of conforming to your clothes choices, but you may risk ending up with wedgies and more health problems than you bargained for.
And of course, buy the RIGHT size.
Buying a size smaller is not only uncomfortable, and can be a bane to your health with it being constrictive and all.
The Right Fabric
I think wearing natural fabrics, like cotton, which are breathable is one of the possible options of keeping your nether regions dry and comfortable.
Synthetic materials like polyester have a poor reputation for breathability, which means moisture gets trapped and not ventilated out.
When that happens, odor molecules get trapped within the fabric. It is a silent odor disaster waiting to erupt.
Okay, this is where I take a deep breathe, go out on a limb and commit cotton blasphemy.
Yes, cotton is great, so is linen. In fact, I have cotton as part of my underwear fabric repertoire.
But did you know that for it to be breathable, it should be quality lightweight cotton fabric?
Differences in quality, as well as cotton blends can affect the heaviness and breathability of your cotton fabric.
Did you know that many a times, manufacturers blend cotton together with spandex, or lycra, to make your favourite leggings and undies, and try to convince you that since it is predominantly cotton, like 60%, it is automatically breathable, and hence better?
The problem with cotton/spandex, cotton/lycra blends is that they become heavier and hence more difficult to absorb moisture, or even repels moisture.
Then you end up with smelly underwear and wonder why cotton doesn’t work for you.
What if I tell you that you are actually better off choosing moisture wicking fabric that are made of synthetic fabric blends like polyester?
But wait, didn’t you just say polyester is bad for breathability?
Yes, I hear you and stand by what I said about them. The difference lies in the phrase “moisture wicking fabric”.
What makes these moisture wicking fabric magic is the way the fabric is woven. The permeable woven pattern allows for moisture to evaporate easily, leaving you dry and comfortable.
Some of these undies are so well made that one brand actually has this as their official tagline for their travel underwear range- “ 17 countries. 6 weeks. 1 pair of award winning underwear.”
You don’t have to be a chemist fabric expert to know what fabrics blends can be breathable. Look out for words like 100% cotton, breathable or moisture wicking fabric to help you make decisions.
As a self anointed undies guru, let’s recap what has been discussed so far to help you choose underwear that can help eliminate smelly odors.
Three Golden Rules For Great Underwear
- Choose underwear cuts like brief cut or boyshorts that does not pinch on your blood circulation
- Choose breathable fabrics like lightweight cotton or have moisture wicking technology
- Buy the RIGHT size.
If you would like to get started right away, here are some recommendations for the best quick dry underwear around.
Best Quick Dry Underwear For Women
Exofficio Women's Underwear
94% Nylon 6% Lycra Spandex
Jockey Women's Underwear
Vanity Fair Women's Underwear
Balanced Tech Women's Underwear
80% Polyester 20% Spandex
adidas Women's Climacool Underwear
92% Nylon 8% Elastane
Exifficio Women's Underwear
Without further ado, the Exofficio underwear range gets the props for the best quick dry underwear in the market for women and men.
Exofficio designs an excellent range of comfortable outdoor wear. Their products are sturdy, lightweight and travel friendly.
The makers seem to understand the importance of quick drying when you are out on the road, and their travel underwear is really what it promises to be.
I discovered these travel underwear a few years ago when I was looking to reduce my luggage and wanted something that was comfortable, durable, quick dry and helps eliminate odors.
Then I thought to myself, hey, these four attributes are exactly what I would like to have in my normal day to day underwear.
Who’s to say that travel underwears cannot be worn daily?
Granted, these underwear are not exactly cheap. Depending on size and cut, it can easily range from $13 to $36.
My inner frugalista bulked at the price and I hesitated at pulling the trigger on these babies for the longest time.
So when I was gifted an Amazon gift card last last Christmas (thank you, you know who you are!), it was a no brainer what I wanted to spend it on.
A few clicks later, Exofficio gained a convert and I never looked back.
The Exofficio Give N Go Women’s Bikini Briefs seems to be the most popular among women.
I’ve got 2 pairs of those, and added 2 more pairs of Exofficio Give N Go Sports Mesh Underwear (which are boyshorts) to my collection.
And here’s why I think Exofficio underwears deserves to be the best quick dry underwear out there in the market.
Best Affordable Quick Dry Underwear
If you prefer not to shell out so much money on a piece of underwear, I have a good alternative for you in the form of Fruit of the Loom breathable series.
Fruit of the Loom Women's Underwear
Fruit of the Loom underwear have been around since the eons of time, ok, maybe not so long, but since 1851.
The newer breathable collection features a micro mesh design(breathe-through holes for ventilation), while the waistband is double stitched for smoothness and comfort.
As compared to the Exofficio underwear, these FOTL underwear come in close as a more wallet friendly option.
In general, the Fruit of the Loom Breathable collection makes for a good option for the cost conscious crowd, for its form and function. It does what it is purported to do – which is breath-ability.
They may not be as durable as the Exofficio, but for the price you are paying?
I’ll say it’s a darn good deal!
There you go, our review on the best quick dry underwear. By reducing the chances of having moist underwear, you are essentially eliminating the possibility of vaginal odor too.
It doesn’t matter if the underwear is termed as “travel underwear”. As long as it helps you reduce the feminine smell, it is wonderful in my book.
Stay dry, stay fresh! Hope this article will benefit you as it had benefited me.
Perry, C. P. (2001). Current concepts of pelvic congestion and chronic pelvic pain. JSLS: Journal of the Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons, 5(2), 105.