Underwear Thesis: Thunderpants Review

My unbiased and unfiltered review of Thunderpants underwear including the hipster and high-rise bikini underwear! tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Full review including washability, inclusivity, fit, sustainability and ethical practices.

Wow, it’s the last day of Underwear Thesis… where did the week go?? I hope you’re loving the reviews and learning a ton. As this series evolves, I want to incorporate more small businesses who are entering into the underwear game and today’s review is a great example. Today we’re breaking down the details of my full Thunderpants underwear review — this is my most requested brand to check out, btw!

My Totally Unfiltered Review of Thunderpants Underwear

If you’re new to my Underwear Thesis, I encourage you to read these posts before proceeding:

The Search for The Most Comfortable Underwear Brands Under $60! Join me as I shop for new underwear and talk about all of the features + how to buy underwear. As a former textile designer, I am sharing information about seams, stitching, chafing, underwear construction, the best fabric for underwear and more! Get all of this shopping advice + underwear brand reviews on jojotastic.com #underwear #panties #undies

My Search for The Most Comfortable Underwear

This post is an excellent starting point and lists out ALL of the criteria of this project, including:

  • Judging criteria
  • Commonly used terms
  • My size + body type details
  • and a lottt more

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What to Look for When Shopping for Underwear, tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Information about the pros and cons of different types of fabric, trim, what is a gusset, and more!

What to Look for When Shopping for Underwear

Including:

  • Fabric and trim
  • Seams and stitching
  • Gusset
  • Size and fit
  • Washability

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How to Care for Your Underwear So It Lasts Longer! recommended washing machine settings, retractible clothes line, delicates bag and detergent

How to Wash Underwear So It Lasts Longer

Including:

  • Delicates bag
  • Cold water + gentle cycle
  • Detergent
  • Fabric softener
  • And more!

Read more

Please keep in mind that these are my personal opinions of the product. If you love Thunderpants, that’s great! I applaud you! But if you’re on the fence about whether to buy them or not, this is what I think you need to know in order to be an informed consumer.

My unbiased and unfiltered review of Thunderpants underwear including the hipster and high-rise bikini underwear! tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Full review including washability, inclusivity, fit, sustainability and ethical practices.

Styles Tried and Price

Fabric Quality + Details

Grade: A-

The Thunderpants fabric is made of 90% organic cotton and 10% Lycra. It’s super soft and stretchy, especially thanks to the synthetic portion. Thunderpants also mentions that their fabric has good stretch and bounce back, which I totally agree with. As many times as I’ve worn these, I haven’t experienced them getting misshapen or stretched out. The weight of the fabric is nice, too. It feels similar to the weight of Arq panties, maybe a little lighter.

The trim around the waist and leg openings seems to be the same fabric, usually in a color complementary color. But because it’s a double layer that is the folded under and stitched on, there is essentially 5 layers of the fabric at the seam… which is a lot.

The gusset is made of the same fabric and is open in the front. I love that they folded the back over after sewing it into the crotch because it means there isn’t stitching in that area to irritate your business! Little details like that are really nice and an indicator of a design team that knows their stuff. The front part of the gusset is not stitched or sewed, so it’s just fabric.

Manufacturing Quality

Grade: A+

Lemme just say it: these are sturdy underwear. The stitching is great and has stayed in place despite multiple washings (no dryer!!!). I’m extremely impressed with how well they are made!

My unbiased and unfiltered review of Thunderpants underwear including the hipster and high-rise bikini underwear! tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Full review including washability, inclusivity, fit, sustainability and ethical practices.

Ethical Practices and Sustainability

Grade: A+

Thunderpants are made in America with limited edition prints by artists. The organic cotton is Fairtrade Certified and GOTS certified. I found it especially interesting that they even list where their cotton comes from in India. In my textile design history, that’s actually the first time I’ve ever seen a factory or fabric mill publicly listed on a brand’s website!

The cotton itself is  grown without the use of any synthetic chemicals such as fertilizers or pesticides and never uses GMO seeds, azo dyes, heavy metals, formaldehyde or chlorine. All very good things!

From there, the yarn is sent to a knitting factory in Melbourne, Australia. Thunderpants shares additional information about this step of their manufacturing process. The part I found most important is that the knitters have their own settling ponds and recycle 85% of their water plus they separate the dye solids which are composted. Waste water plays a major role in the environmental impact of the clothing business, so it’s really refreshing to see it addressed!

Once the fabric is knitted, it’s sent to their cut and sewn facilities in Hillsboro, Oregon. This is a Minority Woman-owned factory that’s only about 7 miles from Thunderpants HQ in Portland. And if you order anything printed, that’s done in Los Angeles.

Inclusivity

Grade: A

Thunderpants is by far one of the most inclusive underwear brands I’ve seen during this project. Their photography is beautiful and does an excellent job in showing different skintones, ethnicities, and body types. It’s awesome to see!

As far as the size range, Thunderpants offers from size small to 3X Large. That is definitely a more inclusive range of sizing in terms of larger sizes, but I wish there was at least an XS in the mix as well.

My unbiased and unfiltered review of Thunderpants underwear including the hipster and high-rise bikini underwear! tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Full review including washability, inclusivity, fit, sustainability and ethical practices.

Washability

Grade: A

Like I said, Thunderpants are STURDY… and because of that, they wash very, very well. I highly recommend air drying and skipping the dryer to avoid potential shrinkage and warping of the seams.

My pairs have been washed a few dozen times and I haven’t noticed any warping, sagging, or binding.

Fit & Comfort

Grade: B-

I ordered size Medium and honestly wonder if I should have gone up a size because the fit is pretty snug. The underwear doesn’t cut in at least, but the leg openings are my biggest complain. I find the seams at the leg openings to be especially bulky and uncomfortable not just because of the binding, but also because of the size of the opening. It’s just too small to be comfortable, unfortunately.

Keep in mind that Thunderpants underwear is a full-rise brief, meaning they are designed to sit just below the belly button. The rise and butt coverage are great and exactly what I was expecting. Because of that, I still sometimes wear them. But I can only wear a pair a week because if I wear them every day, my skin gets irritated.

If you are also concerned about the leg opening, I advice steering clear of the hipster cut. I found that style to be the most constricting and uncomfortable in that area. The full-rise briefs were at least tolerable.

I will say that the Thunderpants claim of being ‘wedgie-proof’ is pretty true. Probably because the leg openings stay put.

My unbiased and unfiltered review of Thunderpants underwear including the hipster and high-rise bikini underwear! tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Full review including washability, inclusivity, fit, sustainability and ethical practices.

Overall thoughts

Grade: B

The fabric from Thunderpants is soooooo good. Because of that, my next order will be for one pair of size large. I currently have 4 pairs of medium and I’m kicking myself for ordering that many without confirming that the fit would work for me!

I also really just love them as a company and want to support them more and more. I’m interested in trying out the bralettes next. And of course, the prints are just too good. It feels awesome to be able to support a small woman-owned PNW business while ALSO supporting artists.

All told, I feel confident in recommending Thunderpants with the caveat that the leg openings might be snug. That could most likely be resolved by sizing up, so be sure to review their Size Guide before ordering.

Ready for even more Underwear Thesis reviews?? Catch up on my previous reviews:

My unbiased and unfiltered review of Knickey underwear including the bikini and high-rise underwear! tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Full review including washability, inclusivity, fit, sustainability and ethical practices.

Knickey Underwear Review

Today’s review is dedicated to Knickey, a brand that’s been frequently requested for this project of mine. Full disclosure, I bought several pairs of their underwear but they also offered to send me some to try. I was very clear that my reviews aren’t always glowing and they were ok with that! I still feel a bit weird about having gotten a free product for this series, so I’m not sure that will continue going forward. As always, I disclose upfront when I’m given product and will continue to do so. With that settled, let’s dig into my Knickey underwear review!

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My unbiased and unfiltered review of Patagonia underwear including the athletic underwear and bikini underwear! tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Full review including washability, inclusivity, fit, sustainability and ethical practices.

Patagonia Underwear Review

For this series, I am pretty much exclusively focused on cotton and natural fiber underwear. But I received so many requests to review Patagonia underwear that I knew I had to include it in my Underwear Thesis! As a rock climber and avid hiker, having good athletic underwear is important to me. Plus, I’ve always been a fan of their sustainability efforts. So because of that (and a few more reasons I’ll get into), I made an exception. Let’s dig into the latest installment of Underwear Thesis: my Patagonia underwear review!

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My unbiased and unfiltered review of Allbirds underwear including the athletic hipster underwear and bikini underwear! tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Full review including washability, inclusivity, fit, sustainability and ethical practices.

Allbirds Underwear Review

Welcome back to another day of Underwear Thesis! Today’s underwear review is all about Allbirds, a brand most well-known for their footwear. They’ve ventured into a few other categories as of late, including underwear. Naturally, a few people reached out to know my thoughts on them, so I picked up two different underwear styles and have a LOT of thoughts… Let’s dig into my Allbirds underwear review!

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My unbiased and unfiltered review of Auden underwear from Target including the bikini underwear! tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Full review including washability, inclusivity, fit, sustainability and ethical practices.

Auden From Target Underwear Review

So to kick things off this time, I’m sharing my thoughts on truly one of the most requested brands of this entire project: Auden from Target! I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve been asked to review Auden. So I’m really glad to finally have this review published — you’ll have to let me know what you think!

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My unbiased and unfiltered review of Parade underwear including the bikini and high-rise hipster underwear! tips and tricks from a textile designer and fabric expert to help you be a more informed consumer and better shopper. Full review including washability, inclusivity, fit, sustainability and ethical practices.

Parade Underwear Review

Ooooh boy. I have put off publishing this underwear review as long as I could, but it’s time. I need to put on my big girl panties (pun very much intended) and share my unfiltered review of Parade underwear. You might be wondering why I’ve put off this review for so long… and it’s because I was majorly disappointed. I probably should wait until the end of the post to say that, but I just needed to address the elephant in the room! Let’s dig into all of the details about why I did not like Parade’s underwear, shall we?

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What do you think of this Thunderpants underwear review?? Leave a comment and let me know!

Photography by Jojotastic.