Attention Seinfeld fans: Do you recall the episode where Kramer decided he was done with any form of underpants, from briefs to even boxers? After discovering that his sperm count was low he was henceforth hell-bent on “letting his boys breather.”
Well, whether you saw the episode or not, this is a popular theory among men, and not one that scholars are all that quick to dismiss. In fact, a UK-based professor of urology has actually gone on record saying that, all around, men would be better off wearing no undies at all. Like, ever. More on that to, uh, come.
Interestingly, 25 percent of men polled in a recent study admitted they go sans underwear at least sometimes. Of that 25 percent, 13 percent said they do it “occasionally,” five percent confessed they ditch their underwear “once a week” and seven percent said they went without undergarments “all the time.” The “why” wasn’t given, but I have a few for you…
1. Easy Access: I don’t know how in detail I need to go here. We’re parked on Self-Explanatory Boulevard, are we not? Who needs tighty-whities to contend with when things get hot in an alleyway or nightclub restroom? Even boxer briefs present similar obstacles. Furthermore, the tried-and-true boxer, with its slit that can be as confounding as the lock on your bicycle, can give you a run for your money. No underwear equates to unzip and go, go, go, Johnny, go.
2. Allergies: Adam Friedmann, a consultant dermatologist based in London, has said that men who suffer from allergies such as eczema may develop contact rashes if their underpants have elastic in the waistband. If there’s rubber in the waistband and you sweat, tiny bits of rubber sweat off onto the skin, and that can trigger a reaction, which sounds downright horrible. Last I hear, there were no underwear that came with loops and necessitated a belt, so waistband is really the only way to go. In shorts… I mean short… perhaps go without.
3. Sperm Count: Is there an iota of truth to the theory that no undies equals a higher sperm count? The prominent London-based aforementioned urologist, Professor Eden, seems to think so. Especially when it comes to sleeping. “Sleeping naked allows the area to breathe and the testes to remain cool, helping fertility,” he told The Daily Mail. It certainly couldn’t hurt to ditch the tighty-whities if you’re actively trying to have a baby. Actually, ditch them all together…
4. Goodbye Sweaty Balls: Look, there are obviously many risks inherent with eschewing underwear in favor of going commando. Leak stains can’t get to (or through) those pants or shorts that much more quickly, and the possibility of catching a bit of your bit while zipping multiplies tenfold. For starters. But underwear is also the chief instigator of perspiration downstairs and, the fact is, the more expensive the underwear, the more the likelihood it’s made of a fabric made to contain, display, confine—hence, considerable sweatiness.
5. Comfort: Totes commando in linen pants or shorts? It’s a dream. Constant stimulation. Just walking over to the bar to order another 7&7 feels delightful. And the ladies notice—though you don’t want them to “notice” anything over the top. But an outline, or flip-flop—of its own volition—can only strengthen your chances out on the town. A comfy pair of sweatpants, too, can be absolutely blissful. It’s all dependent upon the material you’re trapping the little man in, of course. Jeans can be a toss-up; the more distressed, worn and just plain beaten down the better. Skinny jeans, however, might just be like getting a vasectomy.
Photo: Getty Images/George Rinhart