One thing we rarely think about before heading out on a hike is what’s going on under all of our flashy outdoor gear. But who said underwear isn’t outdoor gear?


A good piece of gear should be seamless and not obstruct or inhibit the very activity it was made to help you accomplish and enjoy, and hiking (or any outdoor activity) underwear is no exception.

A well-made pair of knickers can be the difference between a good day and an I-can’t-get-these-damned-things-out-of-my… kinda day. Or a this-bra-is-more-painful-than-my-blisters kinda day.

As a recent hiking underwear convert (you heard it here first) it’s my duty to bring the news of enjoyment-enhancing hiking underwear to the world.

Royal Robbins ReadyDry Essentials Underwear has got your back (and your bum) when it comes to comfy, quick-dry, chafe-free underwear. Hell, the first time I wore them on the trails, they were so light and breathable, I didn’t even notice they were on.

Plus with the added bonus of being made from two sources of waste, these undies are doing their part for sustainability. But how exactly do they balance being a piece of technical performance gear and some of the comfiest undies in my drawer?

Let’s strip it down *smirk emoji*

Why does hiking underwear exist?

Bras, boxers, and briefs are responsible for supporting some of the most sensitive parts of the human body.

So naturally, the material, cut, and design of the underwear you choose affect how your precious bits and pieces feel, especially when you’re in the elements and moving your body in all sorts of wild ways.

The five-pack of undies you pick up from K-mart (guilty as cheaply-charged) haven’t been made with hiking sweat and cold freshwater plunges in mind. But Royal Robbins ReadyDry Essentials Underwear have.

What’s so good about Royal Robbins ReadyDry Essentials Underwear?

This underwear range has been created using a specially designed yarn, S-Cafe – yes cafe as in coffee.

A combination of used coffee grounds and upcycled plastic water bottles (that’s TWO sources of waste for those playing along at home) are used to create the recycled polyester fabric.

This nifty combo grants the fabric a range of handy features that K-mart undies couldn’t even dream of.

The coffee grounds create superior odour control three times stronger than cotton that doesn’t wash or wear out (did someone say ultra lightweight hiking?). The recycled polyester means the fabric is both highly durable (no snags or pilling here) and super quick to dry out after your spontaneous river dunks.

The fabric also employs ‘HeiQ Smart Temp Technology’ which responds to your rising body temperature, helping to wick moisture and make the fabric breathable. Feeling hot and sweaty? Activate cooling function!

The four-way stretch mesh knit means the fabric can be pushed, pulled, and tugged in all directions, so you’re free to move any which way you need. Plus the flatlock seams mean the possibility of chafe won’t even enter your mind.

All these handy performance features are ideal for outdoor adventures, but even while travelling these undies are a top choice. The lightweight, quick-drying fabric means you can wash and dry out these undies in half the time of other commonly used fabrics, allowing you to cut down on how many pairs you bring, saving space and weight. Win win!

Prices and Where to Buy

Royal Robbins ReadyDry Essentials Underwear has multiple cuts and designs for both men and women.

With prices ranging from $30 for the women’s bikini to $50 for the women’s bra, the price is comparable with other brand-name underwear – but of course, with all the added tech that makes them the comfiest and most durable choice when travelling and outdoors.

As there’s no Aussie online store just yet (although the US store is still a great place to get more info on the range), your local outdoor store is the best place to find out what’s locally available.

The quality of the garment that brushes up against your skin is just as important as the layers and layers you put over it. A fresh set of hiking underwear will make your outdoor activities comfy and carefree so you can spend more time enjoying yourself and less time with your knickers in a knot.


Images supplied by Royal Robbins