**Note: This blog post is not brief (giggle, get it?). But it is a little bit funny, so please read it all the way through and try not to get your panties in a twist.**
What, you thought this was just fun and games? I’m going into the wilderness! I have to protect myself from the danger of wedgies. Finding the right underwear is VERY important, and there are so many elements to consider.
I was surfing through forums on whiteblaze.net specifically for discussions on women’s underwear. The brand name ExOfficio came up a few times, so I went to the company’s website to learn more. Now, I’d never heard of them before, but if you haven’t figured it out already, I’m not really cutting edge when it comes to fashion. When I mentioned the brand to a friend, she responded, “Yeah, ExOfficio” in a way that indicated she might be rolling her eyes at me through the phone. So, what I learned is that they specialize in travel apparel. And their tagline is “Made to Adventure,” which is always a good sign.
Full disclosure: I reached out to the company, and the fine folks there provided me free of charge the samples that I am reviewing.
I requested both the Give-N-Go Lacy Bikini and the Give-N-Go Bikini Brief, each in size medium. They arrived in the mail just in time. See, I haven’t done laundry in weeks and was getting desperately low on underwear (it’s always the underwear that does me in!). So, when the two pairs arrived in the mail with the tagline “17 countries. 6 weeks. One pair of underwear. (OK, maybe two.),” I just about died and went to heaven.
I am not a fan of doing laundry. It started when I was 8 years old, and separating/folding the laundry for my family of six was one of my chores. One day I announced to my parents that I would be doing my own laundry from now on and would no longer be folding everyone else’s. I guess I was a little stubborn and independent back then (but not now. No, never!). And now as a grownup (yeah, grownup) I wonder why in the world I ever decided I wanted to do my own laundry, especially since I have to take it down two flights of stairs, scrounge up the quarters for the machines, and wait around for it to finish so neighbors don’t relocate my clothes to the floor.
So anyway, ExOfficio’s offering me a chance to put off doing laundry for a while longer was a good start.
I’ve had the underwear for over a week, but I didn’t want to rush the review. I take this responsibility very seriously, so I’ll try not to get too cheeky with my comments. I mean, butts are on the line here. I wore each pair for several days and made sure to test them in various endeavors. I wore them to work, running errands, eating dinner, taking a nap, talking on the phone, scratching my head, when I went for a run, and of course during a hike.
My general take on the underwear is that they are super comfy. They are more full-coverage than bikini-cut underwear I’m used to, which is great since priority #1 is no wedgies and priority #2 is no slippage of material. The Lacy version in particular is my preference. I am a little fleshy (not zombie fleshy, just squishy) around the mid-section, and the Lacy pair sat comfortably without causing any pinching or visible lines. And despite the fact that it didn’t seem to be gripping noticeably, not once did the waistband slip downward, even when I was running.
The Brief pair ran significantly smaller, as a word of warning. Even so, the size medium fit me fine. The Brief pair has a stronger elastic on the waistband (as well as at the leg holes), which for me was plenty comfy but created noticeable pinching. I’m a little self conscious about my softer middle, so I’m not likely to wear them with work clothes for fear of looking “lumpy.”
Many women, myself included, use panty liners to stay so fresh and so clean, clean. I’d read some reviews that lamented that liners wouldn’t stick to the underwear. I had minimal issues. I will say that the material is not as adherent as cotton underwear, but it clung well overall. I use Kotex brand liners, which have strong sticking power, if that makes a difference.
On to another factor…I generally take issue with quick drying clothing material in that odors cling to it, and these pairs of underwear are no exception. Specifically, after hiking (and sweating) for seven hours they definitely needed to be cleaned. So keep that in mind should you love my review so much that you go out and get a pair of your own (and, to be clear, I do recommend this underwear and plan to use it on my trek).
But never you fear, there’s more! After cleaning with soap and water each night, I lay the pair out to dry. One evening I went to a movie, and (most likely because I was too lazy to pat them dry with a towel first) when I came back a few hours later they were still clammy, but not wet. I wouldn’t have had a problem wearing them at that point if I needed to. And by the time I woke up the next day, each pair was completely dry and passed the sniffed test with flying colors. Keep in mind that this was in my apartment, ambient temperature about 65 degrees at night (did I mention I love Fall weather? I love Fall weather!).
Last but not least for Jor’s First Product Review Ever (!!), one pair is black, and it’s definitely opaque enough to double as a bathing suit bottom, ya know, just in case I get the whim to do the backstroke on part of the Appalachian Trail.