Can I Swim in Underwear? (Let’s Find Out)

Swimming is a favourite pastime for many people living in coastal areas in the world, and it has been considered one of the most therapeutic sports in the world. People wear all sorts of things for swimming, whether for sport or for leisure.

For this reason, it is important to have good swimwear. There are many options of swimsuits, bikinis, briefs, and many other swimwear out there. However, people still ask the question: Can I swim in underwear?

Yes, you can swim in your underwear, but it’s not recommended. Underwear is made of fabrics that are heavier and less porous than those found in swimsuits, meaning that they will absorb more water.

Wearing a pair of damp underwear for an extended period of time can lead to both skin irritation and fungal or bacterial infections like tinea cruris (also known as jock itch) or bacterial vaginosis. In addition to causing discomfort, these infections may be transmitted to others who come in contact with the contaminated water.

ALSO READ: Can Wearing a Wet Bathing Suit Cause Yeast Infection?

Due to the potential for health hazards associated with wearing underwear in swimming pools, most public facilities have some kind of policy around this practice and require patrons to wear swimwear at all times when using their facilities.

Why Swimming in Underwear is Harmful to Your Health

Swimming in underwear even once can cause health problems. For instance, if you swim in underwear that has become damp from wearing it under your clothes all day even on a hot summer’s day when your sweat glands are at work you can be inviting bacteria and fungi to grow in your genital area.

READ ALSO: How To Get Rid Of Mildew in Swimsuit

If you swim frequently in underwear, you may suffer from skin irritation and rashes, vaginal infections, urinary tract infections, or yeast infections.

The best thing to do is to see a doctor if you suspect any of these issues after swimming in underwear. Your doctor will give recommendations and treatments specific to your situation. The recommendations given here are general tips that anyone may find helpful.

Other Reasons You Should Not Swim in Underwear

Wearing underwear made of cotton, silk, or nylon while swimming can cause bacteria and fungi to grow in your genital area. The wetness from the pool or other bodies of water causes their fibers to absorb moisture, creating a damp environment that makes it easy for bacteria and fungi to thrive.

Here are other  reasons why you should never swim in an underwear:

1. Can damage the fabric

The more friction, the more wear, and that means damage. The chlorine in public pools is a tad abrasive to cotton—and therefore, so are the chemicals in most hot tubs. Your underwear may not last as long when you swim in it frequently.

2. Can cause irritation and infections in your private parts

If you swim in underwear that’s wet, you’re at greater risk of developing thrush, herpes and other infections. This is because the warm and moist environment is a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi, which can build up in swimming pools.

A recent study published in the journal Water Research found that even after swimmers have left a pool, they continue to shed skin cells that contain drug-resistant microbes.

ALSO READ: Are You Supposed to Wear Underwear Under Swim Trunks?

These microbes can be easily transferred from one swimmer to another through skin contact or when people touch things like handrails that have been contaminated by other people’s infected body parts.

Scientists recommend getting out of the pool as soon as possible and drying yourself with clean towels after swimming so you don’t end up spreading germs for others to catch.

3. Can damage the water on the ground

Swimming in underwear can potentially damage the quality of the water you’re swimming in.

The water on the ground, such as a lake or pool, can be polluted by chemicals from your underwear. Chemicals from your underwear could enter the water nearby and affect its quality.

According to scientists, dirtying pools by wearing underwear is harmful to health because when you swim in a place with clean water, you are more likely to be healthy and less likely to contract illnesses.

Other Alternatives to Swimming in Underwear

Swimming in underwear is not advisable. A good swimsuit can absorb the water, pull it away from your skin, and keep you comfortable during a long swim.

If you’re swimming in underwear, it might be tight to begin with and become even tighter as it gets wet. This may cause uncomfortable chafing or even injury if it cuts off circulation for prolonged periods.

It may also become transparent once wet, which could be embarrassing or distracting for others around you.

1. Wear loose-fitting clothes

If you don’t have a swimsuit handy, you could try wearing at least loose-fitting shorts and a t-shirt. Make sure that the pair of shorts is thick enough that it won’t become see-through when wet.

2. You can rent suits

You can also rent suits or buy them at many public pools just ask an attendant if this is an option before jumping into the water.

FAQ by Readers: Do You Wear Underwear With Swim Shorts?

3. Swim in full clothing

Swimming in full clothing (for example, jeans and layers), while sometimes done as part of survival training, isn’t safe due to the extra weight on your body combined with reduced mobility caused by the clothing.

Should I Wear Underwear with Swimsuits?

Wearing underpants with your bathing suit is the worst idea ever. When you’re in the water, your underwear gets a lot of use, so you should be aware of that. The water will warm up if you wear a second layer every time you go swimming.

Chlorination in swimming pools destroys colors and fabric fibers.

During the summer, you’re almost certainly going to the pool. Swimming pools do not like swimmers who wear underwear under their shorts. Chlorinated water harms cotton fibers.

The garbage is subsequently dealt with by the pool filter. If you add too much cotton to the mixture, the filter will collapse.

Cotton underpants are not very good either; they allow bacteria to easily get into the water. Keeping cotton out of the water will help you stay healthy this summer.

Your bathing shorts make concealing your underwear tough. There are times when the structure is obvious. More significantly, if you get your trunks wet, they will float. The waistband of your underwear will always be visible.

How to Protect Yourself From Infections in the Pool

Wearing underwear in a pool may expose you to the risk of infections. Here are some ways to protect yourself from infections in a pool:

1. Wear a Mask

What type of infection are you most worried about? Not wearing a swimsuit could increase your risk of certain infections, but if you’re concerned about chemicals in the pool water that might be absorbed through your skin, then you have other factors to think about.

You can reduce your chances of getting an infection or coming into contact with bacteria by wearing a face mask if you have allergies or a cold. You can also wash your hands before and after using the bathroom and avoid drinking pool water.

2. Wear proper swimwear

To make sure you have the best swimming experience, ask yourself: what kind of swimsuit is appropriate for your body type? If you want to wear a one-piece swimsuit, a swim cap should accompany it.

A two-piece swimsuit shouldn’t be worn without shorts or a swim cap. Or you can choose to wear only waterproof underwear in order to prevent leaks from getting into the water.

In addition to making sure your bathing suit fits well, it’s also important to make sure that your makeup is the right color for your skin tone. You don’t want to look like a clown when you go swimming.

If you have the wrong color makeup, it will show up clearly in the water and look even worse than if you had just gone without it.

3. Remove all of your makeup before swimming

You’ll want to remove all of your makeup before you swim in underwear because it’s not good for the environment; it can also be harmful to you. Wearing makeup in the pool may seem harmless enough, but remember; swimming pools are full of chlorine, and chlorine is a potent chemical.

Chlorine breaks down makeup and creates tiny particles that can be released into the water and if they’re released into the water, they can get on other people.

And if they get on other people, they could damage their skin too. Makeup can clog pores which leads to acne, and it could cause eye infections or skin irritations. So make sure that all of your makeup is removed before you go swimming to keep yourself safe.

Conclusion – Can I Swim in Underwear?

Swimming in your underwear is bad for you and others. Simply put, it can lead to a greater number of skin infections, potential embarrassment and humiliation, and discomfort.

Avoid swimming in underwear unless you like the idea of getting sick and spending your vacation at a hospital/doctor’s office. It’s not worth it. This advice may be unpopular, but it’s better safe than sorry. The last thing I want is for even one person to fall ill because they decided to swim in their underwear. Be careful.


You may see some products here which has either been used by us or independently selected by (obsessive) editors. As an affiliate of Amazon, Anything purchased through our links may earn us a commission at no extra cost to you. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.