While sales of menswear items have declined over the years, there is new interest in one particular item—underwear. Between 2013 and 2016 men’s underwear prices have increased by 34% according to a report by First Insight while in the same period menswear prices declined by 27.8%.
So why are men inclined to shell out top dollar for intimates over other clothing items?
Our research found that there are three primary contributors:
Comfort: According to a survey by underwear company Tommy John, 100% of men say they have to adjust their underwear during the day. Mens’ experience with uncomfortable underwear makes comfortable underwear highly-prized. In fact, Tommy John’s best-selling air trunks sell for a whopping $45, turning them into a luxury item.
New Performance technology fabrics: The underwear retailer Naked is a hit with millennial men because it uses materials made from X-Static, a silver-infused fabric that keeps odour under control. As men embrace a more active lifestyle, they want material that will keep them feeling cool and smelling fresh. In 2016, the brand launched a special line of lounge and underwear designed in collaboration with basketball star Dwyane Wade called Wade X Naked. The Olympian basketball star is the creative director of the line and was featured on the cover of several magazines sporting the underwear. Endorsements from athletes drive substantial increases in underwear sales, especially with millennial men.
Luxury/Style: 2 (X) IST is an underwear brand that attracts attention for its playful and bold underwear with graphic prints like palm trees. The business has also garnered attention for its innovative packaging. For example, for the launch of its SLIQ line, it created a new box that featured images of the underwear on the inside of the box, in addition to the cover art on the outside of the box. This let consumers view how the product looks from different angles.
Read more about men’s underwear insights here: