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Boxer Briefs from Tilley Endurables, I/O Bio Merino and Polarmax review
Written by Jason Elliot   
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image/I/O Bio Merino
Gearing up for a day on the trails on foot or a bike has you fretting over what to wear. Do you need a long or short-sleeved shirt? Any layering needed? Should you bring a rain jacket or pants?

Look at what’s under this – your underwear. It is common to leave the house with a pair of cotton skivvies for your outdoor excursions. Cotton is cool and comfortable but breathes little and slowly results in a sweat drenched pair of boxers. The excessive accumulation of unwanted sweat in your undies is called ‘swampass’ and can be as stinky as uncomfortable.

Tilley Endurables Coolmax Extreme Boxer
image/Tilley Endurables
Tilley Endurables, Polarmax and I/O Bio Merino offer underwear with greater wicking ability than your conventional cotton bloomers.

The Tilley Endurables Coolmax Extreme Boxer consists of 100% Coolmax Extreme polyester and is touted by Tilley as stain, odor and bacteria resistant. The Extreme Boxers are marketed as travel boxers, but they are first-rate for a backpacking trip because of their odor repelling feature. The Extreme Boxers are comfortable in use and kept the area ‘down below’ dry. Tilley lists the Extreme Boxers at $32.

I/O Bio Merino’s parent company, Michell, has been in the wool exporting business since 1870. The suit you wore for that recent job interview probably had wool that originated with Michell. Merino wool is the main fabric in the active and lifestyle clothing from I/O Bio Merino. The I/O Bio Merino Contact Boxer Brief has a sheer feel, and it performed as expected for a non-cotton undergarment and wicked awayperspiration quickly. I/O Bio Merino Contact Boxer has a suggested retail price of $34.99.


Polarmax Performance Boxer Brief is slated to hit retailers in the spring of 2011. The Performance Boxer Brief will be part of Polarmax’s All-Year Undergear line and is promoted for its yearlong versatility. Polarmax tabs it as a technical base layer for extreme conditions and use. The Perfomance Boxer Brief is lighter than the Tilley and I/O Bio boxer briefs weighing four ounces. The Polarmax boxer brief is made of polyester and spandex and wicks sweat away below the abdomen as advertised. The Polarmax Performance Boxer Briefs list at $24.99.

Keep the swamps in the Everglades and not in your pants and enjoy the comfort of non-cotton underwear during your next backcountry adventure.

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Jason Elliot

JElliotJason Elliot is the Editor and Publisher of Elliot has established a respected following with the top industry professionals and gearheads for his nonbiased reviews of outdoor gear and apparel. Elliot is a regular contributor to, and other publications on top of his editorial and writing role with

Elliot left a successful fifteen-plus year management career that he worked at Fortune 500 and S&P 500 companies to pursue his passion for writing about the outdoors. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Clarion University of Pennsylvania and a master’s degree from La Roche College.

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