While we love the wool fabric on the Stoic Performance Merino Boxer Briefs, we found most of the other aspects of the underwear somewhat lacking. The fit and design seemed to be a bit off in some ways, and they didn't seem overly durable. In general, we think that there are better options out there if you're willing to spend almost $50 on a pair of underwear. For a tighter design with thick and durable fabric, check out the Smartwool Merino 150.
Stoic Merino Performance Boxer Brief Review
Cons: Baggy fit, not super durable
Compare to Similar Products
Stoic Merino Performance Boxer Brief
|Price||$36.98 at Backcountry||$49 List||$36.00 at Backcountry|
Compare at 3 sellers
|$31.97 at Backcountry|
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|$23.73 at REI|
|Pros||Soft fabric, comfortable waistband||Comfortable, large fly, breathable, odor control||Durable, soft, good odor control||Good fit, soft fabric, breathable||Soft, excellent nonrestrictive support, less expensive than most|
|Cons||Baggy fit, not super durable||Expensive, not as supportive as some||Heavy, extra thick waistband||Piping is annoying, lots of seams at crotch, not incredibly durable||No fly, not great odor control|
|Bottom Line||Good for general use and comfortable for traveling, but a bit baggy for higher performance.||These underpants are an excellent all-around pair that works exceptionally well for travel or backcountry use.||The Smartwool briefs are the burly standby for travel underwear, and they continue to perform well over time.||The Anatomica is a comfortable lightweight pair of boxer briefs, but it seems designed a bit more for looks than features.||The Vibe is an innovative pair of underwear with comfortable features.|
|Rating Categories||Stoic Merino Performance Box...||Alpine Onset Boxer Brief||Merino 150 Boxer Brief||Icebreaker Anatomica Boxers||Saxx Vibe Boxer Brief|
|Odor Control (20%)|
|Drying Time (10%)|
|Specs||Stoic Merino...||Alpine Onset Boxer...||Merino 150 Boxer...||Icebreaker...||Saxx Vibe Boxer...|
|Material||100% Merino wool||83% Merino, 12% Nylon, 5% Spandex||87% Merino wool, 13% Nylon core||83% Merino wool, 12% Nylon, 5% Lycra corespun||95% Viscose, 5% Spandex|
|Measured weight (oz)||3||2.8||3.2||2.9||2.6|
|Air Dry Test (hours)||2||1.25||2||1.25||2|
|Dryer safe?||Yes, tumble dry low||Yes, tumble dry low||Yes, tumble dry low||no||Yes, tumble dry low|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Generally, we were not overly impressed with the Stoic boxer briefs. We did like the merino wool fabric, but for some reason, it seemed less durable than the other wool underwear in the review. We think that with a redesign the Stoic skivvies could have scored a fair bit higher than they otherwise did.
There were a few things that the Stoic does well. We like the design of the waistband; it's soft, supple, and feels nice on our hips. We also liked the merino fabric, as it's our preferred baselayer material for both its feel and functionality at the skin level. However, there are some flaws that took away from the underwear in this metric.
While we recognize all bodies are different, and that they may fit better on others, the fit did seem a bit off. The legs were disproportionally tight to the relaxed fit of the crotch, and we think it contributed to the tendency of the legs to roll up when doing anything active. Also, the fly was a bit small, and the cut of fabric made a double layer of merino all the way under the crotch, which bunched a bit. We can't say it's a terribly supportive pair of underwear either.
Like all merino wool underwear, the Performance Merino breathes well, although the fabric seems fuzzier than the other pairs. The looser knit of the fabric made the boxer briefs feel a touch less breathable than the other wool underwear, but still better than the nonwool options.
Again, like the other wool underwear, the merino Stoic used for their boxer briefs performed well in keeping odor to a minimum. Perhaps the double layer of merino underneath the crotch kept odors for a touch longer than some of the lighter weight wool underwear, but it still far outperformed the synthetic and semisynthetic pairs.
We didn't see a ton of wear on the Stoic Boxer Briefs, but there were a few minor trends that signal some breaking down over the testing period. The waistband got progressively more wrinkled over time, indicating that the elastic inside is separating from the overlying layer of wool. Secondly, the knit seems to be a bit looser than the other merino wool boxer briefs and pilled a bit more.
Although they weren't the fastest drying underwear, they dried adequately both indoors and out. In the sun it took them about two hours to fully dry on a sunny winter day in Southern Utah.
While they're not bad to lounge in on a lazy day, and they're fine for everyday wear, we didn't love them for more active pursuits, as they tended to bunch up on our legs, and the fly is annoying to use.
The Stoic boxer briefs are the most expensive underwear in the entire review, and we think that there are both better and less expensive options. For a dollar less you could get the Editors' Choice Award-winning Outdoor Research Alpine Onset, and for half the price you could get the ExOfficio Give-N-Go, which won our Best Buy Award.
The Stoic Performance Merino Boxer Brief has good fabric and waistband, but we found the fit and construction somewhat lacking to really want to recommend these over other options. We believe that for less money there is higher performing men's underwear out there.
— Ethan Newman