By Don Jurries
Part of the "Beast” Premium Underwear range, a pair of Icebreaker Merino Wool Anatomica Boxers, given to me at a trade show last year, has sat in my cupboard for over 6 months, unused… until now. I love Merino wool. I keep coming back to wool layers for winter activities. But, I’m sure like many, I have a hard time getting past the thought that Merino wool equals exceptional warmth, not something you particularly want in your nether regions, and is therefore best used in colder weather.
After the recent ISPO Trade Show, I finally had the opportunity to try out my Beast boxers during some snowshoe testing on the Hintertux glacier in Austria. The cold snap that hit Europe in early February had me throwing on anything I thought would help me stay warm. My pair of Icebreaker Anatomica Boxers worked beautifully. At a lightweight 150 g/m2, the underwear kept me warm, felt comfortable (i.e., didn’t itch), and with wool's natural moisture wicking and anti-microbial properties, stayed dry even during serious physical exertion.
On the downside, the Anatomica Boxers did ride up slightly around my upper thighs. This bunching didn’t cause me any chafing, thankfully, but might if you are sensitive. I have also heard from other sources that depending on how well you are built, the front pouch might have too much fabric.
Over the years, Icebreaker has done a fantastic job of proving that lightweight Merino wool can be used during all seasons. I know avid cyclists who wear Icebreaker cycling shorts and jerseys, even during summer. Yet, there is still that barrier of perception that is hard to break.
Not under debate is the sexy edge to Icebreaker's Beast Premium Underwear range. My Anatomica Boxers are a redish-orange color with white trim and an elastane waistband with satin finish. The Icebreaker mascot, Ramotaur, usually wears the same style at all the trade shows, followed along by a gorgeous female companion in various Icebreaker outfits. All I can say is my wife likes them even if I don't have the famous Ramotaur six pack.
The Anatomica Boxers retail for $50 and come in a range of colors. The Icebreaker Beast Premium Underwear collection also includes a variety of briefs with matching crewes.