Men, apparently (well, according to La Millet), have experienced a change of heart in the underwear department. No more for them those tight-fitting things made of stretch cotton that cup and hoist up your manhood in the same way a Wonderbra lifts Eva Herzigova’s cleavage to the heavens. Men, La Millet has declared, are born free. As free as the wind blows. As free as the grass grows. Free as a roaring tide. Born free to follow their hearts. So they are, therefore, partial to the freedom provided by boxer shorts. And the feel of a cool breeze against their nether regions. Letting your balls hang free is also supposed to be better for your sperm count.
The boxer short was invented in 1925 by Everlast founder Jacob Golomb as a replacement for the traditional leather belted shorts that had been popular with boxers until then. The loose leg was to allow unhindered leg movement for footwork, which is said to be very important. When exactly they morphed from sportswear to underwear we don’t know, as we’re not in the mood to Google, but are working on the assumption that, once upon a time, an entrepreneurial type attended a boxing match and, mid-game, thought to himself that he would enjoy the unhindered leg movement so cherished by professional boxers in his day-to-day existence more than the restriction of the undergarment he was wearing, and so went about re-creating them in a soft, white cotton. We imagine it as a eureka moment that changed the lives of men the world over. In much the same way the light bulb did.
The boxer short on this page is by Sunspel. They were the first to introduce British men to the concept of letting it all hang freely back in 1947. It comes in a wide array of prints and patterns, such as polka dot and check, but to be honest, we’ve always preferred a white boxer. White is clean. White is sex symbol. White is the colour Nick Kamen wore when he stripped in that launderette. He wore Sunspel in that ad. He looked sexy. We want to look like him and break 1,000 teenage boys’ hearts when they find out we are straight. Boxer shorts equal heartthrob status. Boxer shorts are hot.
by Natalie Dembinska