Mission, SAXX & Champion Head-to-Head: Which Is The Best Base Layer Underwear For Running

Saxx vs Champion vs Mission

We took three of the biggest names in base layer production and compared their highest performing boxer-styled underwear for athletes. SAXX, Mission and Champion provided OGR with products that each claimed will keep the man goods happy, the inner thighs chafe-free, and the athlete happy free from having to look for new base layer gear again.

All base layers were tested over several months of trail running in Park City, Utah.

  1. SAXX Kinetic Boxer: The most trendy name in the group at the moment is SAXX and their Kinetic performance boxer. From the outset, the materials used in the Kinetic were clearly top notch and the ‘Ball Park’ pouch for your man goods to rest in make the Kinetic by far the most comfortable base layer here. But in active settings like running, the Kinetic tends to bunch up and shift around quickly. As an everyday, casual wearing piece, it’s a great option. But not something that should be used in serious active situations with a lot of leg movement.
  2. Mission Vaporactive Boxer: Mission’s big claim to fame is their focus on wicking and evaporative technology that is integrated into their Vaporactive line up. Supposedly providing superior moister management with Mission’s propietary 37.5 technology, the Vaporactive Boxer fits and feels fantastic, but lacks the excellent and comfortable feel of SAXX’s Ball Park feature. While in an active setting, the Vaporactive also suffers from the same bunching and shifting problems the Kinetic had plaguing performance.
  3. Champion Power Flex Compression Boxer: Champion enters the comparison with their Power Flex Compression Boxer, their top of the line compression base layer underwear that features their Vapor wicking technology (every company likes that word apparently). While the materials used clearly fall behind both Mission and SAXX and the wicking/moister management isn’t quite on par with the competition, the Power Flex provides superior staying power during physical activities. No bunching up or shifting even in the most aggressive of trail runs.
  4. Pricing: Affordable pricing is always a big consideration in our reviews. SAXX leads the pack with their Kinetic boxer priced at a huge $37 on their website. It’s a good thing the Ball Park feature is comfortable, because that price point hurts. On the opposite end, Mission’s Vaporactive boxer comes in a two pack for a very reasonable $29. Rounding out the group is Champion’s Power Flex at $20.
  5. Winners: For this test, the unquestionable winner is the Champion Power Flex Compression Boxer. Between the fantastic fit and the garment staying precisely in place during even the most intense physical activities, Champion has created a go-to piece of clothing for any athlete not wanting to worry about base layer adjustments. While material quality and wicking ability definitely fell short of the competition, those two benchmarks don’t hold nearly as much value as the ability to simply fit well and staying power do.

Saxx Kinetic


Champion Powerflex

Chad Waite is the founder of Outdoor Gear Reviews and an avid outdoorsman and trail runner in beautiful Park City, Utah.

Posted in Apparel Reviews, Baselayer