The leap from diapers to underwear is a big one for any child to make. There’s the drama of
potty training, followed by the newfound freedom of a child who can use the toilet by themselves. But in between, the less discussed matter is finding the best underwear brands for children.
In those early days of independent lou usage, kids might require, well, a little extra absorption. Who hasn’t had a plastic bag of wet clothes handed to them at the end of the day by a daycare worker or nanny? Accidents happen. But finding underwear that will make kids feel comfortable and confident doesn’t end after they get their bladder under control.
Soft fabrics that don’t pinch are preferred. And, depending on the child, the design of the undies is critical too. Some kids like briefs while others boxer briefs, some prefer plain, others want super heroes and daffodils on their underoos. So where can you find all that in one package?
Romper reached out to experts (that’d be parents) to find out. Here are their choices for the best in bottom protection, featuring gentle cuts, smart design, and the very softest fabrics, you know, just like you’d want to wear. We only include products that have been independently selected by Romper's editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article. Primary
Primary has made a name for itself as being a gender neutral children’s brand parents love. So much so, they recently expanded into adult wear. But where they really shine is in the best underwear brands for children department. Their clothes are just as the name suggests: made in primary colors and out of exceptionally soft fabrics. In the case of underwear that means
panties and briefs in stripes made out of 95% cotton and 5% spandex. Waist bands are made with elastic that’s sewn in so there’s no twisting or tangling within a seam. And they’re sold in affordable three packs so you can get the most bang for your buck. Kickee Pants
If you’re in the post-potty training days, you need to invest in Kickee Pants Potty Training Underwear. Made from their signature buttery-soft bamboo blend which is 95% viscose from bamboo and 5% spandex for stretch, there is arguably nothing softer. But the real selling point is the microfiber pad that allows for little leaks that are known to happen. Even if there is an accident, the fabric on these undies are designed to be cool and dry quickly so your kiddo can recover their pants and pride. Plus, the underwear comes in all sorts of fun colors and patterns, like sharks and starfish.
If you’re already putting your kids to bed in Hanna Andersson PJs, then you know this is a brand trusted by parents for years. Naturally, that also means they make some great kids underwear. Their soft organic fabric won’t irritate sensitive skin, but even better, the cut of these skivvies are kid-friendly. For instance, their
Classic Unders have a high waist that will actually stay up on your child’s belly unlike some panties that are prone to rolling down. Bunching isn’t a problem either with the briefs and boxers that come in a soft rib material. Encased elastic means there’s no stretchy fabric touching the skin either. Old Navy
Old Navy is a great option for children’s underwear both for its affordability and its commitment to making durable garments. A six pack of boxer briefs, for instance, include large elastic waistbands that won’t rub the waist. Panties are made with the same amount of care and kids who like a certain cut will appreciate that Old Navy carries
hipster, bikini and boy short styles, all made in cotton/spandex blends for stretch and breathability. In classic Old Navy fashion, the underwear options are colorful and come in a variety of patterns with seasonal options (for example, Valentine’s hearts or St. Patrick’s shamrocks) available as well. We’d call that another one of the best underwear brands for children. H&M
There’s a reason jersey sheets were such a phenomenon when they first appeared in stores, they’re incredibly soft. That’s why people love wearing jersey materials on the body and that certainly applies to underwear. Perhaps that’s why parents praise H&M’s selection of skivvies, from
briefs to boxer briefs. Once again the spandex/cotton blend makes the Scandinavian brand’s kids undies affordable and functional — they’ll stay up, stay wedgie free, and let kids run and hop and play easily. They’re also consistently ranked “true to size” by H&M reviewers, a big plus for busy parents who need to grab and go while out shopping. GAP
GAP has been a trusted brand for parents for generations. That’s for good reason. The company uses strong fabrics that hold up, and that includes in the underwear department. This
organic cotton 5-pack of panties, for instance, has received only five stars from customers. Comments include: “Well-made and fit my tall and skinny six year old” and “My little girl loves the prints, and I love the quality. It's a win, win, for everyone at the right price too.” Can’t argue with that kind of feedback. Another plus is GAP’s partnership with pop culture. For instance, the 4-pack of Star Wars boxer briefs are equally loved, both for the movie tie-in and the comfortable design. Tiny Undies
The entire focus of Tiny Undies is on people new to the underwear game and that really makes sense. It’s a monumental development milestone to ditch diapers altogether, there should be more focus on the bridge that gets kids there. That’s what Tiny Undies does. Their
Tiny Trainers are 100% cotton but also include a two layer 100% cotton core that’s super absorbent. They’re also sized from 6 months to 4T so you can meet your kiddo where they are on their potty training journey. These underwear are also tag and itch-free so they can get comfortable and used to wearing underwear. Then when they’re confident with using the potty, there are Tiny Undies to graduate to. Each are low-rise and anatomically-correct for babies, young toddlers, and older toddlers who typically have a tiny waist and protruding belly. BlendiTone Undies
Representation is important even on underwear. That’s why
BlendiTone Undies are a nice addition to the undie-verse. The brand's cotton briefs and boxers feature brown and Black characters in fun roles like mermaid, doctor, ballerina, and basketball, football, and soccer player. According to the website, the BlendiTone brand is the work of a wife and mom of two kids “who noticed the lack of diversity in undergarments while shopping for her kids.” Gotta love that take charge approach and follow through with a product line that’s as cute as it is soft and functional. Lucky & Me
It’s getting harder to find children’s
traditional boxers these days with the growing popularity of boxer briefs, but Lucky & Me makes them in 100% cotton and they have rave reviews. “So cute, so comfy according to my son, the price was right- we are happy.” Some children don’t like tight fitting pajamas and many Amazon reviews said these were the answer to their PJ woes offering children a looser option for sleep. These are made for ages four to 10, so kids have plenty of time to grow with them. Shoppers also report that these boxers really are super soft, a nice alternative to the starchy cotton of white boxer shorts of yore. AQR
Another interesting conundrum in the children’s underwear world is why some brands make them with a fly and some don’t. Some children want a fly and for that, consider AQR. It makes adorable
tiny briefs in fun colors and patterns beginning with size 2T that come with a fly. Organic cotton and certified organic dyes also mean less impact on the environment. Just bear in mind that the suggested washing on this is cold cycle and lined dried. If that’s going to slow down your laundry day perhaps these aren’t for you. But if that’s not a problem, also consider that this same brand makes adult underwear too. Boden
The British brand Boden is known for its charmingly colorful and well made children’s garments. From adorable knit sweaters to dinosaur high tops, the whimsy of their lines, while expensive, is super charming. And Boden’s undies are no different. A
3-pack of panties for instance, features blue and pink stripes and florals with matching thick waistbands. Boxers (really more of a hybrid boxer meets boxer brief) have a button fly and come in bright stripes that are 100% cotton. As a bonus, the boxers come with their own drawstring bag, perfect for saving for overnight trips or vacations. Hot tip: they often carry kids' socks to match! Oddobody
Colorful organic cotton briefs is what Oddobody offers kiddos, and parents agree they’re great. Available in a variety of colors in
bikini, brief, and short, Oddobody also makes matching tanks, a nice addition for winter days when layering is crucial or for summer, when children want to lounge in less. The underwear come in sizes 2 to 9 to get them through the kid years and are sold in affordable packs so finding simple, comfortable underwear isn’t such a burden on your pocketbook. While on the site, you can also shop for yourself as Oddobody also sells a wide selection of adult under garments as well.
Children’s underwear shopping need not be a drag. Explore these best undewear brands for kids and you’ll find the perfect fit.