We put these pairs to the test to find out which shorts are best when it comes to protecting your thighs
Now that we’ve reached the peak of summer, we’re finally getting all the sunshine we deserve—and the unyielding heat that comes along with it. That means thigh-chafing is once again an uncomfortable issue for many of us, leading us to stay indoors with the A/C or toss aside our shorts, skirts and dresses in favour of pants just to avoid a rash. Thankfully, there are thigh-saving solutions out there, including a diverse assortment of anti-chafing shorts in different fabrics and sizes. We put these five pairs to the test to help you enjoy the hottest of hot days without any restrictions.
Fusion Shortlette Anti Chafing Slipshort 9″ Length, $33 USD, undersummers.com
“I wore the shortlettes for an entire day while running errands, going on an hour-long walk and lounging around at home, and am happy to report zero chafing. They stretch nicely and fit me similarly to shapewear, minus the uncomfortable compression (and sometimes jumping to get them all the way up). I wore them under a maxi dress and they didn’t roll up my legs or down my waist after each step. But I did find the shorts a bit too long for my preference—I’m 5’5, and the bottom of the lace detailing reached about two inches above my knee. I can see myself wearing these under a long dress again, but I don’t think I would wear them on their own since the lace detailing isn’t my favourite. I would recommend these to a friend if they’re into that though!” — Elham Numan, graphic designer
Shortie Thigh Saver, $39, knix.ca
“These shorts *look* a lot like a pair of Spanx, so I expected them to feel the same—i.e. somewhat suffocating—but they are light as air and, because they aren’t actually meant to compress, super comfy. I test-drove them on one of those ‘feels like 42 degrees’ sticky summer days and didn’t feel a drop of sweat below the belt. (My upper body, on the other hand….) But, because I opted for the new shorter length of the best-selling Thigh Savers, I found they didn’t actually solve my chafing problem: The shorts stopped *just* above the widest part of my inner thighs, leaving them unprotected where it mattered most. I also found they rode up even higher after walking around for an hour, essentially becoming a pair of boy-short undies. I’m curious to try the classic six-inch length to see if those stay put and protect my thighs better.” —Charlotte Herrold, editor-in-chief
Unisex Thigh Bands, $18 USD, bandelettes.com
“I admit I had relatively low expectations for these thigh bands. I assumed that in order to stay put, they would either have to be so tight or have such intense adhesive backing that they’d be downright uncomfortable. I was dead wrong. They stayed put for a day of walking errands in my neighborhood and helped immensely at keeping the dreaded hot summer day thigh rub at bay. The fit I got using their website’s handy size converter was bang-on and the look was super simple—I tried the plain black ones which look just like the leg of a simple spandex bicycle short. The best part about these is they’re not necessarily an item that you wear once and have to wash like, say, a pair of underwear thigh savers. Unless I got really sweaty in these, I’d be cool to wear them a couple of times between washes the same way I would wear my trusty black bike shorts more than once. 10/10 would recommend!” —Jennifer Berry, managing editor
Blue Sky Clothing Co.
Hallie Undershorts, $29, blueskyclothingco.com
While I expected thigh-saver shorts to be thick and restrictive, the Hallie Short from Blue Sky Clothing Co. was the exact opposite. I was so surprised! The shorts—which are made of 75% bamboo—are *super* soft and lightweight. Both under a dress and on their own, it felt like I wasn’t wearing anything (which is a must in this heat). I’d recommend sizing one size down for a comfy but snug fit. The only downside to the softness of the fabric is that I found some of the designs more see-through: The shorts are great for layering under a dress or rocking at home with a long shirt, but I’d be hesitant to wear them out completely on their own. —Katherine Singh, assistant editor
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The Cooling Shorts, $39, thighsociety.ca
“Though summer is my favourite season, I sweat a lot on humid days—like, more than the average person. So I was less than enthusiastic about adding an extra layer underneath my maxi dress. But these shorts are a game changer. They’re thin and super stretchy, which means they’re easy to get into and feel like a second skin once they’re on. I’m 5’10, so I tried the long version which has a 9” inseam. They protected my thighs from rubbing together all day and didn’t ride up at all, but I wouldn’t be able to wear them under a short dress—I think I’d need the 7” inseam for that. Overall, the best part of these shorts is the cooling effect, which felt like some kind of sorcery; Thigh Society claims they can make you feel cooler by up to one degree and now I believe it. Also, because the fabric wicks moisture, they stay dry, which prevented sweat bleeding through the fabric around my waist.” —Lora Grady, freelance writer & editor