Hmmm…how to get into this post without embarrassing myself too much or running out of ways to say words drunk people dare each other to shout louder and louder at parties or public places that rhymes with cleanest and meanest (for the Naughty by Nature fans from 1991 out there).
So I’m reviewing a product that I learned about from Believe in the Run, a great product review blog I highly recommend. The product, Rüez performance underwear, won their “Best In Gear” (or “BIG”) award. After trying it out myself, I see why.
For fun, let’s see if you can count the euphemisms in this review. They will help you laugh and keep this blog from being too NSFW.
I have been personally looking for a solution to holding my bits and pieces stable while running, especially since my hernia surgery last June as I find I’m much more sensitive now.
What it is & how it works
The idea is basically like a sports bra for men. Only you wear it down there. Yeah, there. It’s a brief orboxer brief made for athletes that features a hole you pass your skis and bindings through like in the backseat of a car. Um, the skis were the euphemism, not the backseat part. OK, just making sure you were following my meaning here. There’s then a pouch in front of the hole that is the reason these things are called Rüez, and pronounced, “Roos,” like kangaroos. Get it? A pouch. In fact, it’s not just a pouch, it’s more technical than that – it’s called a, “Performance Pouch.” By passing your business through the hole, they are held securely, keeping them from jiggling too much, getting injured, or sticking to your leg or something.
There’s also a pocket on the side of the boxer (coming to the brief soon) for a credit card, hotel room key, a little cash, etc. I have no interest in this since my running shorts have pockets, I run with a water bottle that has a pocket and my iPhone arm band can hold stuff, too. Still, good thinking.
Some of you may be thinking this is irrelevant. You’re either female, don’t exercise, are young or you don’t know better. This is a product you either know you need and appreciate the concept, or you don’t even realize how much nicer it is to use this until you try it.
I decided to try the brief given my post-op issue and desire for as much support as possible. I’d imagine the boxer brief would be essentially as supportive since the things I want supported would still be slipping through a hole and tucked into their pouch.
I found the material to be very comfortable. It’s kind of a mix of spandex and cotton feelings, and is a quick-wicking fabric. It’s actually 85% polyester/15% spandex, but the poly has to be of a really high quality for the product to feel the way it does. It felt this way even after both washings I put them through – some products feel nice at first, but immediately change when you wash them. Not Rüez. They’re quality. As for the wicking claim, I definitely got sweaty on my run, but they weren’t soaked the way my Adidas performance brief typically are.
Speaking of my Adidas briefs, that’s been my go-to solution so far, and it’s ok, but not ideal. I found the things don’t stay close to my legs and ride too low. As a result, they don’t quite give the support I was looking for. The Rüez had no trouble in this regard. They stayed wrapped around my legs, and adding that to the pouch meant I was well-supported. And by, “I,” I mean, “my junk”.
I wore them from about 7am through my run to about 2pm. They were really comfortable, and my run was definitely much more comfortable. I wasn’t going, “Oh my god, this is incredible. My boys are staying tight and comfy with each stride!” I wasn’t shouting to random people on the street as I breezed by them. I also didn’t set a PR pace or anything (my knee is actually acting up, so I took it somewhat easy, though did do my longest distance since my knee surgery in December).
What did happen was that I wasn’t ever aware of any discomfort during or after my run. I wasn’t sore later down there. These may not sound big, but they are. This is what I was looking for. Rüez definitely delivered 100% on my expectations. Kool and the Gang were cool.
Speaking of cool, the founder of Rüez, Chris Varney, is awesome. He’s extremely responsive, very thorough, and really funny. He created the product out of his own need (great story on their site), and actively uses them in his own running. He gets it. He lives it. That totally puts him in a better position to create this product and run the business than someone just looking to make a buck. And I love his customer service. Chris – if you’re reading this, you’re awesome. Don’t change.
The best thing he said was in answering my question on how exactly to use the product (they include a small image, but it wasn’t totally clear to me if everything goes through the hole, just the twig, or just the berries). He wrote back within about 20 minutes of me submitting a question online, and said “Jim and the twins all go into the urban condo.” I suppose in his line of work, you need to be funny, but that was just awesome. Definitely better than my played out ‘twig and berries’ line.
Of course, my wife couldn’t believe I sent in an email saying “twig and berries,” so Chris’s response saved me a little at home. She also found a NSFW video on YouTube on what to do which had a blue fake wenis attached to spandex pants demonstrating the product. I much preferred reading Chris’s response to seeing the video (though it was helpful. And disturbing. Very disturbing.) No, I won’t provide a link to it. I’m too nice of a guy to do that to you.
I have literally one complaint, and I wonder if the boxer brief would have been better for me (though I generally don’t like boxer briefs – I feel like they’re always riding up my legs). I found that – at least for the first hour – I was aware of some bunching of material between my legs back behind my business. Sorry, try not to imagine it. It just seems like the material of the brief is a touch too wide between the legs, and so it creates a little ripple of fabric when you wear it. I wouldn’t say I was aware of it at all during the run, nor most of the day. Either it broke down, I got used to it, or a little of the two.
I think this is an issue with the design that might be impossible to avoid. Ultimately, you’ve got two independent sheets of material (one for the main brief that has a hole cut it in, and then one for the pouch), and they get joined at a seem between the legs (like most briefs have). It’s probably the case that some rippling sensation would happen no matter how narrow this area is, and being too narrow would mean insufficient support. I’d just imagine a tiny bit narrower would help.
Then again, I have no experience or knowledge of underwear design, so maybe this is an industry standard width that’s based on millions of years of collective wearing and designing. Seriously, millions – tons of guys wearing undies for years and years. And I am a boxer guy, so what the heck do I know about brief design. I haven’t worn briefs since I was like 11 (save for on recent runs).
That was it for issues. And if I just wore them for my run, I probably wouldn’t even have noticed.
This is really easy – unless you aren’t a guy or don’t exercise, get them. Period. Go to http://www.ruezunderwear.com/shop.html
and get a pair or two. Shipping is cheap, so you can get one to try, and then get 12 more when you’re convinced.
If you don’t hurt your body while you improve it, you’re much more likely to enlighten.your.body.