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What Are the Pros and Cons of Spandex Underwear?

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  • Written By: Alex Tree
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 22 July 2014
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Stretchiness and its ability to regain its shape after being stretched out are some potential advantages of buying spandex underwear. In fact, some people prefer spandex underwear just because of its stretchiness and the ease of choosing a size that fits. On the other hand, many people have spandex allergies, do not believe in purchasing synthetic fabrics, or are prone to health problems that require them to avoid fabrics that do not breathe well.

Spandex is a synthetic fabric with a plastic base. Some people are allergic to it, while other people refuse to buy synthetic fabrics for the well-being of the planet or because they believe natural fabrics wear or wash better. When people are allergic to spandex, their skin is usually irritated when they come in contact with it. While spandex is more prevalent in women’s clothing, a spandex allergy can be frustrating for both sexes because underwear for men and women often has at least some spandex in the elastic band. On the other hand, people who do not buy synthetic fabrics generally don't because they consider themselves green, because natural fabrics wear better, or both.

There is some advantage of having very stretchy underwear. In general, the fit is better because it molds to the wearer’s skin. The wearer also does not have to purchase new underwear to maximize comfort should his or her weight fluctuate slightly.

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A potential con of wearing spandex underwear is the increased likelihood of developing a yeast infection or urinary tract infection, particularly for women. Spandex does not breathe well, unlike cotton, wool, and silk. It is also stretchy, so people are more likely to choose a size that follows their body’s contours perfectly, but this can lead to wearing underwear that is too tight. In addition, it has poor wicking properties, meaning it does a poor job of absorbing moisture on the wearer’s skin, like sweat. To ensure the health of the genitals, doctors typically recommend wearing breathable, somewhat loose undergarments that absorb moisture well.

Spandex underwear can lose its shape after the first few wears, depending on the quantity of spandex and what other materials make up the underwear. In addition, spandex underwear can loose its shape while a person is wearing it. It might regain its shape when washed and drip-dried but lose it again after a few hours of wear. In general, if spandex underwear loses its shape after just a few hours of wear, it is typically because the wearer is wearing a size too small.

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Discuss this Article

golf07
Post 4

I had a urinary tract infection and ended up getting a yeast infection after taking antibiotics. After reading this article I realized this happened after I started wearing spandex underwear.

This makes me wonder if this was the cause for my urinary tract infection. Has anyone else had this problem after wearing spandex underwear?

LisaLou
Post 3

I bought some spandex underwear hoping it would help me look slimmer. I loved the way the spandex fit, but found out I was allergic to it.

This is the first time something like this happened to me and it took me awhile to figure out it was the spandex underwear that was causing my rash.

If it wasn't for this, I would wear spandex underwear on a regular basis. I don't know if every brand would cause this reaction or if it was just the particular one I was wearing. I haven't spent any more money to try out a different pair.

julies
Post 2

There are a lot more choices available for spandex underwear for women than there used to be. You can find just about any color you want. I like to wear spandex underwear under something that is form fitting.

I don't wear this underwear every day, but once in awhile when the occasion calls for it. One thing I really like about this underwear is the way it holds its shape.

One pair of spandex underwear seems to last much longer than a pair of cotton or nylon underwear.

sunshined
Post 1

I know many people like spandex underwear because they are stretchy and can also help hide some figure flaws, but I have found it to be very uncomfortable.

No matter what size I buy, I have found it to be too tight and constricting. If I wear this for very long, I end up getting stomach cramps, so this is totally not worth it for me.

I just stick with regular cotton underwear and feel so much more comfortable.

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