Object Apparel high waisted underwear review

When I realized it was time to start replacing some of my worn out underwear, I honestly dreaded the research and work that go into finding brands I want to buy from. I don’t remember exactly how I came across Object Apparel, but it was apparent from the get-go that they had something for me. If you’ve ever wondered what exactly you want to wake up wearing in a stylish Airbnb on a Sunday morning before drinking coffee from a French press, I’ve found the underwear for you.

This review is for the Object Apparel high waisted undies. They are available on their website and through their Etsy store. I purchased a size XL in green and tan geo. I usually wear a dress size 8 or 10, and sizes 8-12 in bottoms. My measurements are:

Waist: 30.5”

Hips: 40.5”

Object Apparel high waisted underwear

Price $36

Ethics

My go-to way to avoid more research than necessary when I must buy first hand is to purchase from small makers or choose American made. Object Apparel is both, based in Detroit, Michigan where they make and design their clothes. All of their fabric is sourced from the United States or is Certified Fair Trade. They also use water-based dyes, which makes the print softer and is an alternative to inks containing PVC and other polymers (plastics), so they avoid an unnecessary use of plastic.

My stance when making an ethical purchase is to put labor concerns first, which means I’ll make a purchasing decision based on my understanding of how people involved in the manufacturing and production of a good are treated, and that factors like resource use in production will usually play second fiddle. That in mind, the thoughtful and small-scale production from Object Apparel fits right in.

Size range

XS-XL

Object Apparel has a size range of five sizes. They advertise their sizes beginning for people with an extra small 24” waist up to a 33” waist for their extra large size. According to the CDC, the average American woman has a waist size of 38.7”, meaning the average woman can’t wear any of their underwear, not by a long shot (if a long shot is 5.7”). While this seems to be a common theme for many smaller makers, it’s still frustrating. Sustainable consumption and ethical fashion isn’t just for thin people.

I contacted Object Apparel about their size range, and I was told they offer custom sizing for people who aren’t within their size range and that they have plans to expand their standard size offerings.

From their website:

“If your size doesn’t align with our sizing chart please select “custom size” at checkout. To make your custom pair we will need the measurement of your natural waist and hips/butt at its widest point. Measure so that the string or tape measure is laying comfortably against your body, and is not too tight. Please feel free to share any other important information with us as well; are you super tall, short, have very curvy thighs, or any other information that’s important in getting you the right fit!”

While this isn’t the same as simply having larger sizes available, I really appreciate that this note is on the regular page for their underwear and not hidden on a Q&A page or something like that. I also like that they mention height and the curvy thigh factor, because considering how small their underwear sizes start, most custom sizes must be for people needing larger sizes, and not everyone carries their weight the same way. From my correspondence with the brand I learned that they would like the brand to be inclusive to everyone who wants to support it, but have yet to expand their size range due to time constraints. At the time of publishing this, the size range is still narrow in more than one way.

Style & construction

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The underwear is high waisted and has a simple construction of their screen printed fabric and elastic around the top and leg openings. The cut of the garment make the leg openings sit lower on the hips than a bikini or brief cut underwear; they’re almost parallel to the ground, a bit like how boy short underwear appear; the effect is flattering and feels a little vintage. As expected, there is an extra layer of fabric in the crotch. It is turned in on the back end and serged and left open in the front. The side seams are also serged on the inside. The other edges of the fabric aren’t turned or serged, but are finished with an overlocking stitch that also attaches the elastic. The elastic features a scalloped edge, meaning little decorative half circles. I was concerned that the detailing on the elastic would rub on the skin and cause irritation, but despite not being particularly soft on your fingertips, it doesn’t bother my sensitive skin and adds a nice detail.

The underwear also feature a large, easy to read screen printed label on the inside back, touting the material, brand, and origin. If you’re worried about itchy tags but don’t want to forget the size or brand of your undies, this is a big plus.

Fit

The underwear I ordered was their XL, and it fits me well. They easily cover the belly button and fully cover the bottom. They sit pretty firmly and don’t ride up or move throughout the day. Overall, their sizing estimations seemed spot on, so no need to order up or down a size, and the underwear fit just as they should-not too tight, and not loose enough to exacerbate lines.

The waist of the underwear is a good size and had more stretch than I need. The elastic on my outer thigh is a bit tight; not enough that it’s uncomfortable, but enough that I end up with a slightly scalloped line wear it sat and that I wouldn’t recommend them to someone with similar measurements to mine, but thick thighs. By the way, my thigh circumference where these hit is 24”, if that’s any help

Fabric

Object Apparel puts a lot of love into their materials. From their website:

“The fabric we use is GOTS certified organic cotton and is either sourced from the United States or is Certified Fair Trade. This is not the cotton fabric you are used to. This cotton is sturdy, stretchy and super soft. We hand dye all our fabric with eco-friendly water based dyes. All of our garments are screen-printed by hand with our original artwork.”

Other valuable information include the blend-95/5 organic cotton and spandex. I’ve reviewed a few pairs of underwear extensively at this point, and I have to say 95/5 of cotton and spandex is my favorite blend for underwear, and I wouldn’t purchase underwear with less than 90% cotton, because things start to get too stretchy.

They offer a variety of different prints that I honestly couldn’t confine to one category. Some of the prints are geometric, some are botanical, some are images and others are patterns. If you’re looking for prints but florals aren’t your thing, this brand is where to look.

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As for their claims about the fabric, they stand up; the fabric is indeed stretchy and very soft. I am particularly impressed by the softness of the screen-printed patterns, which you can’t even feel rubbing your fingers over the fabric. I don’t wear a ton of prints and stay away from screen-printing because I didn’t like how it feels, but I imagine their careful and attentive production is what has made the difference for these underwear to have all-over screen print and still feel so smooth and soft. I agree that the cotton is sturdy, as they mention, and that’s probably due to the blend; the stretchy knit maintains its integrity by being mostly cotton. That said, durable wouldn’t have been the word first in my mind to talk about this fabric, even if it is durable. It’s so noticeably light and breathable that I would mention the comfort factor first; the fabric doesn’t appear sheer or thin, but feels light and airy.

Customer service & returns

Object Apparel doesn’t offer returns for intimates, so any ethical undies are keepers. There were no issues with my order, but I did contact the shop owners on two occasions. Both messages received quick and helpful responses. I requested my order be shipped plastic-free and/or with reused packaging, and the owner let me know that their policy is to always ship plastic-free, with compostable or paper tape! They typically include a sticker with their orders as well, which I opted out of with my message.


Would I rebuy?

Object Apparel makes a great pair of underwear, inarguably. I’m pleased with how the screen printing has held up to the washing thus far and the underwear is both comfy and cute. In terms of quality and how much I like the product, I would definitely buy from Object Apparel again. I’m a big fan of solid underwear and florals, but if I were to choose a different kind of print, I would purchase Object Apparel. It’s truly a lovely product and the care and attention put into the underwear is evident in the quality.