The Pros & Cons of Wearing Boyshorts

May 23, 2017 | Hurray for Lingerie, Hurray Vacay, Mexico Vacay, Underneath, Underwear | 6 comments

Style notes: Kimmay is wearing the Jennifer Boyshort and matching bralette from AnaOno. Photo taken in Tulum, Mexico at Sanara by Becky Yee during the Hurray Vacay in Mexico. No photo shopping or air brushing to my body. Ever. 

Let’s have some girl talk about boyshorts! {And however you identify – you’re welcome to chime in. Hurray!}

One of the reasons I write about and love helping you find the best undergarments is because they are the closest to your skin and your most intimate body parts. So choosing a style, material, and cut that works for YOU is super super super important. Wearing underwear that feels good will help you say hurray inside, outside, and underneath.  It’s also a great way to learn to love your bum. We’ve already explored the pros and cons of wearing thongs, and now we’re exploring: boyshorts. Hurray!

I’m going to take you down a boyshort journey so that you can explore a few different silhouettes, get my honest feedback about when and why I wear them, and hear from Hurray Kimmay readers of all different ages, body shapes, and panty sizes. Ready? Let’s say hurray for lingerie!

{By the way, I don’t think we, as a collective society, have settled on using two or one word for boyshort. I’m going to use one, because it’s really a new term that came from two words. You can spell it as you like!}

Why Are They Called “Boyshorts”?

This popular style got its name from a traditionally “male” attributed underwear style: the boxer short. And, as it tends to go in our society, the female version of the boyshort became more and more traditionally feminine as the style evolved. And while you can absolutely still find “traditionally male looking” boyshorts designed for a “traditionally shaped female body” (so many quotes here because wow we really classify gender so hard when it comes to undies and bodies), the truth is, a lot of boyshorts designed with women in mind are extremely feminine. In recent years, boyshort simply means a particular “short” like silhouette. In fact, there are variations on the boyshort now.

Boyshorts That Look Like Shorts

Some boyshort underwear is made like a real “short”, and may extend longer on the leg and have full back coverage. This is different than say, a thong, tanga, Brazilian, or bikini cut because of the extra side and leg coverage. The kind of boyshort that actually looks like a short is a more traditional version of this kind of underwear. Not traditional as in conservative (although it does have more coverage), but traditional as in more in line with the original concept for this style of underwear. Though styles vary, it’s most common to find this silhouette with a more sporty or athletic design style, or with male underwear attributes like a button fly, thick elastic waistband, or reinforced seams and leg openings.

Personally, I love to sleep in this type of short if it’s made of a natural or breathable fiber. So cozy! I also like to wear these underneath my ski pants in the winter, or in-case-of-the-subway-wind moments under skirts in the summer.

Here are two examples from B.tempt’d and Ridge Merino:

B.Tempted and Ridge Merino Boyshorts on Hurray Kimmay

Bootyshorts and Girlshorts

Since its design conception, the boyshort has undergone many style upgrades and variations. In addition to the traditional short style, there are varying options when it comes to coverage and design. Two of the more popular designs are the “cheeky boyshorts”, or “bootyshorts”. These similar styles, which still retain the look of a short, are very short short. So short, in fact, that most of the bottom part of your booty or cheeks will be exposed. In this case, the sides still have more coverage than a bikini, but the bum has less coverage than a typical boyshort.

I wear this type of underwear when I’m feeling sassy. I especially like to wear this in lace to match a lace bra. These often (but not always) end up becoming more of a thong/tanga back on me, as the fabric like to work its way up and inside my cheeks. Not always ideal. But I do feel a certain extra amount of sexy when I let the cheeks peek.

Here are two examples from Fleur’t With Me and Yandy:

Fleur't with me and Yandy Boyshorts on Hurray Kimmay blog

Another style variation is the “girlshort”. This is partly just a clever play on words, and partly a way to distinguish different cuts and styles. As I mentioned above, the boyshort has really swung toward the traditionally feminine side of things recently. And while I’d like to say it’s a feminist action, and that we’re not longer “stealing from the boys”, by calling it a girlshort… it’s also proof that we really have a hard time with gender mixing or non-binary gender terms. It’s a very interesting topic that I’m exploring recently, especially when it comes to underwear! Stay tuned.

Either way, one example of this is the underwear brand, Commando’s, distinction between two types of short underwear. One, with more coverage and a more boxy shape uses the term “boy short“. The other, with a lower cut front and less coverage on the back, is referred to as a “girl short“. See below, the front and back of the girl short is on the left. The front and back of the boyshort is on the right.

Commando girl short vs boy short on hurray kimmay blog

Now let’s break it down to the most common Pros (Hurrays) and Cons (What-the-heys) about boyshort underwear.

Pros (Hurrays) of Wearing Boyshorts

  • More side coverage on the hip area for comfort and modesty
  • The wide side can sometimes lay flat and not roll or dig in like a thin side can
  • Bum coverage (full or cheeky coverage, depending on the style) and no “bum floss”
  • More fabric means more opportunity to showcase pretty attributes like color, material, or print
  • Comfortable for sleeping or lounging around the house
  • Great style for sporty or athletic looks

Kimmay wearing anaono boyshorts on Hurray Kimmay blog

Style notes: Kimmay is wearing the Jennifer Boyshort and matching bralette from AnaOno. Photo taken in Tulum, Mexico at Sanara by Becky Yee during the Hurray Vacay in Mexico. No photo shopping or air brushing to my body. Ever. 

Cons (What-the-heys) of Wearing Boyshorts

  • The wider side can sometimes dig into the top of your thigh, causing a bulge or discomfort
  • If they don’t move with your body, they can ride up
  • The back coverage can sometimes move around – trying to “become a thong”
  • Some wearers warned that the wide side can cause an unflattering “wide” look to thighs
  • Those with a full bum may feel like the coverage is inadequate, at best
  • It can feel like “a lot” of material underneath tight pants
  • Unless it’s designed without seams, the coverage can cause panty lines to show through clothes


Don’t just take my word for it! Let’s hear from some Hurray Kimmay readers! Take it away…


Love boy-shorts!!!!!!! Comfortable, no “cutting” flesh lines on the sides and there are a lot of cute ones: from cheap fun Wonder Woman ones from Target, to really pretty (expensive) lace ones.

-Ana B. 

They ALWAYS ride up my crack!

-Kim S. 

Kelly Aaron

I have really long legs and a curvy booty and they tend to be flattering on me. I wear them mostly under mini dresses because I like the extra coverage.
But the biggest reason I heart boyshorts is that my hubby loves me in boyshorts. Like, goes completely gaga. It’s a pretty awesome feeling!

-Kelly A. 

Elizabeth C 2

I love boyshorts because they aren’t riding up my ass all the time! They’re super comfy. And I don’t really care if people think they don’t look good on me.

-Elizabeth C. 

Debra M

Love ’em. They are comfy and don’t wedge up – or in. Also, they stay in place and they’re low enough that they don’t cut at the waist or add bulk under clothes. Move, and they move with you.

-Debra M.

Beth C

From an elder woman’s view point, I like them because gravity has it’s way with your bum as you grow older and other styles of panties end up hitting you across the cheek and not under it – therefore causing outrageous, embarrassing lumps. I also love that they don’t bind or ride up. They are all I buy now.

-Beth C.

Neysa M.

If I could find a cotton pair that didn’t want to desperately be a thong, I’d be more keen on them. As it is, I have a few pair that I wear around the house under my PJs or my “house skirts”. I love the look, but I’m packing a luscious rear, so they don’t sit where they ought to. The name confuses me. They look sod all like boy’s shorts. They look like daisy dukes. I have a pair of “sport” undies that I much prefer and I wear those under jeans, and have been known to wear them under my riding pants. I have a philosophy that, like bra straps, you surely know people wear them, so if you happen to see a knicker-line or a bra strap, oh no, she’s wearing UNDERCLOTHING?

-Neysa M.

Kimmay in boyshorts from AnaOno on Hurray Kimmay blog

Style notes: Kimmay is wearing the Jennifer Boyshort and matching bralette from AnaOno. Photo taken in Tulum, Mexico at Sanara by Becky Yee during the Hurray Vacay in Mexico. No photo shopping or air brushing to my body. Ever. 

Your turn:  Do you like wearing boyshorts? Do you find them comfortable or not? What do you think of the name? Think you want to give boyshorts a try? Here’s a great place to start. See my list of the most comfortable boyshorts out there in my article on About!

xoxo kimmay