These merino sports boxers from Smartwool show that natural materials can match synthetic products where next-to-skin comfort is concerned…


Smartwool Merino Boxer Brief




  • Reinforced supportive pouch 
  • Plenty of flexibility 


  • Lacks lock-tight support
  • Loose leg cuffs can ride up

Support: 3/5
Comfort: 4/5
Durability: 4/5

Man-made materials like nylon and polyester revolutionised the performance of our workout gear. But it’s taken a while for us to, um, cotton on to the fact that old Mother Nature already had a natural solution that’s hard-wearing, versatile and sustainable. See how these Smartwool Merino Boxer Briefs stack up against the rest of the best moisture-wicking underwear.

It’s also soft, comfortable and great at wicking moisture, regulating temperature and resisting odour. That magic material is merino wool and there are some seriously good reasons to switch to products that use it.

Smartwool Merino Boxer Brief features

These training-friendly Smartwool Merino Boxer Briefs use a blend of 88% merino wool and 12% nylon. The wool sits next to your delicate bits for a soft, light and luxurious feel. The nylon reinforces the shape and makes the boxers stronger and more durable.  

You get a slim fit that hugs and supports but it’s noticeably baggier than some gym undies on test. You don’t get that totally locked-in security for your old chap and his buddies and you’ll get a bit of bounce if you’re doing box jumps. So these are best suited to lower impact sessions. But on the plus side there’s plenty of stretch in all the right areas and that lets you move freely.

Like most gym boxers, you get smooth, flatlock seam to fend off chafing, while the wide elastic waistband has a merino lining so that everything feels soft against your skin. That’s reinforced enough to hold its shape nicely, doesn’t roll up and manages not to pinch or cut either. So you kind of forget you’re wearing them. 

The leg cuffs are a little looser-fitting than some workout boxers which means they don’t quite stay in place as well. But the use of merino and the more relaxed fit makes these good for regular wear during the day – as well as when it’s time to sweat. They’re a great option for chilled runs, mobility and yoga sessions. There’s an easy access fly front too.  

The Smartwool Merino Boxer Briefs come in four colours and five sizes from S to XXL. 

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