A few years ago, Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan made headlines when optics caught them not wearing underwear.
Since then, it has almost become a red carpet standard with Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid, Gwyneth Paltrow, Rihanna and a host of other celebs donning slinky, revealing and clearly going commando garb.
But it is not just a Hollywood event trend as more women, and men, move to liberate down under and ditch their undies. The term “going commando” is said to originate somewhere in the military when troops avoided jocks to prevent chafing and excess perspiration during manoeuvvres.
Going without underwear solves the dreaded VPL, or visible panty line. Tight clothing becomes a pleasure as nobody will see the arches of your thong or granny panties. It provides an uninterrupted shape and aesthetic. This is especially true for athleisure wear, like leggings or workout gear.
With jeans, it is sexy and as low-rise waists start making a comeback, going commando is perfectly paired and on-trend. Brooke Shields first mooted the idea of going underwear-less with jeans in a 1970’s ad that suggestively reads “nothing comes between me and my Calvins”.
You will feel sexier and more confident. Just like the style of underwear you are wearing can affect your mood, so too can the fact there is not much between you and the elements. It is the notion of knowing that you are not wearing anything underneath, your own naughty secret, that is said to be quite sensual – whether at work, gym, shopping or lounging at home.
It is feeling sexy, first for yourself and then how you project your state of more-sensual being. Or imagine telling your partner that you’re commando beneath the little black number you are wearing on a hot date.
And according to slate.com, not wearing underwear allows for female pheromones, the chemicals emitted that drive men wild, to enjoy free passage. When these are released into the air, it is said, the primitive parts of the male brain pick it up and impacts them, allowing for a subliminal influence over the male species.
Pheromones are common amongst all animals, including humans, and work outside the body. They induce activity in other animals, including sexual arousal. Pheromones are found in sweat and other secretions.
It is also likely better for you not to wear underwear. Australian site news.com.au reports that going commando enhances sexual health. American gynaecologist Donnica Moore suggests in the piece that our bits need to breathe.
Underwear restricts this with heat and sweat build up, potentially causing yeast and other infections.
“If you absolutely have to wear underwear,” she says in the piece, “then it must be cotton.” Bacteria thrives in warm and moist environments, the article says. It does caution that factors such as fabric and detergents also play a role in possible irritation down there. Fresh air dissipates all things potentially embarrassing, too.
With the price of a pair of knickers ranging from around R50 to R300, going commando can save you money, too. A racy lacy number from a boutique can set your credit card back closer to R1,000 in some instances.
Imagine saving a few thousand rand every year for a dream holiday, when part of the way in which you saved for it, was to liberate yourself from tiny pieces of fabric with high price tags. Of course, when you pack for the holiday, there will be a lot more space in your bag for a bikini collection when you do not have to pack a bucket load of undies.