When it comes to color styling, certain things never go out of style, the forerunner of which is great color contrast.
At this point, we should all be used to contrasting colors, especially in the digital age. Think about every Instagram pic you ever took, or every iPhoto picture you ever edited. Contrast has become an adjustable part of how we present and perceive almost every image we see.
Why all the fuss over contrast? Because great contrast (especially with complimentary colors) can elevate any brand’s look to eye-catching levels. It can also draw attention to a underwear look’s structure, design elements, or overall stability. Good color contrasts are meant to work aesthetically, in a different way than (who’s aesthetic more or less works against traditional expectations). Strong color contrast might feel passé, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a successful technique.
The most noticeable color contrast technique is when the waistband is a different color than the underwear body. If you take a look at the Tommy John Second Skin ($32), the Intymen Electric Boxer in fuscia/blue ($22), the Cocksox CSX12 Boxer ($30), the Calvin Klein Underwear Low Rise Briefs ($27), the Bodyaware Smart Stripes Body Boxer ($22), the Bjorn Borg Seasonal Solids ($27.95), or the Agacio Basic Low Rise Boxer ($21), you’ll see very simple yet effective uses of contrasting colors. Here the waistbands are a simple black or a basic contrasting color to the underwear below. This allows for the underwear design to take center stage, not to mention that the spacing between waistband and fabric becomes more noticeable.
In some instances, color contrast is put to use beyond the waistband. When the piping and stitching are highlighted in a complimentary color, you get the same directed focus but with great awareness of the entirety of the look. The Piado Azure Blue (on sale at $14) does a great job of integrating contrast between the elements with its white piping. The N2N Euro Split Short ($34) uses color contrast as the bottom liner of the shorts, giving it a slightly retro feel. The Timoteo Double Cross Brief ($22) highlights the color contrast by using the old standard red/black contrast, and the Nasty Pig Covert Jock ($29) uses a reliable pairing of red and yellow. But perhaps no one does contrast piping and waistband better than Garcon Model. The Garcon Model Mansion Briefs ($28.00) really show us the heights that color contrast is capable of reaching.
Last but not least, in the world of color contrast, we have the always-pleasurable reality of colors that just go well together, simple as that. Complimentary colors bring out the best in each other, and also the best in a pair of underwear. The Frank Dandy Macaroni Boxers ($29) use blue and orange to stunning effects, and the Atelier-DT Briefs ($22) uses old reliable colors that look like a certain team’s 1960’s football uniforms. The Baskit Contrast Jock comes in a host of different color combinations, each one better than the last, and each one complimentary when it comes to color contrast.
Even when underwear looks are striped, or include several colors, color contrast could still be taken into account. The Jack Adams Bridgetown V-Neck T-Shirt is banded with stripes, all of which are laid out so that no non-contrasting colors are touching. And then, the Andrew Christian CoolFlex Tagless Briefs use contrasted colors to really elevate their already unique look. One can see a permanent trend in the way color contrasting is used, and most likely will be used for a very long time.
What are your two favorite color combinations? Do you wear them both to give your outfit a bit of contrast? Let us know with a comment below or by tweeting us @underwearexpert.
For more information on these brands: 2(X)IST, Agacio, Andrew Christian, Atelier-DT, Baskit, Bjorn Borg, Bodyaware, Calvin Klein Underwear, Cocksox, Frank Dandy, Garcon Model, Intymen, Jack Adams, N2N, Nasty Pig, Piado, Timoteo, Tommy John