Monday, January 31, 2011

Ginch Gonch Reworked - A Review

Ginch Gonch was one of the pioneers in the men's underwear world of, for lack of a better term, what I call "funderwear".  In other words, they were one of the first brands out there to create fun underwear for men.  They take child-like themes of tractors and hot dogs and make them adult with names like "Wiener Eaters" and "Shaft Blaster".  

I reviewed some Ginch Gonch low-rise briefs in the past.  But since then, they've undergone a lot of changes with new owners and new designs.  So I thought it only fitting that I finally post a review about some of their new stuff.  Today I am going to write about the "I Love London" series "Skid Vicious" briefs (regular rise).  Now unfortunately this brief is currently out of stock at Ginch Gonch, but this review should also apply to all of the briefs in the "I Love" series (except for, of course, the style section of the review).  Or if you like, it is also available at I Want Pants

Now for the review.  First I want to say that I love that Ginch Gonch finally added an x-small size to their lineup.  Now I am right on the cusp between x-small and small.  I'm a 28" waist and the x-small is 26-28 and the small is 28-31.  So theoretically I should be able to wear both.  I went with the small. Right out of the box they were a little too big.  The pouch was just a tad baggy and the leg openings weren't quite as snug as I would hope.  While this may have been alleviated by choosing the x-small, I am not sure.  Anyway, I was able to throw them in the washer AND dryer once or twice in order to shrink them to size.  Now I definitely recommend that you try them first before doing this and proceed with caution as you don't want to ruin your brand new undies.  After the shrinking, these things fit fine.  The legs are still a little loose and there are moments I am afraid I might fall out of them, but I have not yet done so.  As I have mentioned, these are full-rise briefs.  So that takes a little getting used to.  I still do, however, feel like there's a little too much extra space going on in the pouch area.  But overall they fit well with enough room for movement while not feeling like you're old and without style -- of course the colorfulness of these briefs helps with that.  

The comfort of these is what I would call average.  The fabric is not nearly as thick and heavy as previous Ginch Gonch styles.  While this makes for a lighter feel, you also lose that ultra plush softness that Ginch Gonch had before.  Also, the waistband is now quite thin, making it fit better under pants.  But once again, it is not the thick, soft waistband that they used to have.  So it is a trade out.  You lose the super softness in favor of a more sleek, streamlined fabric.  One isn't necessarily better than the other, they're just different. 

As for the style.  These things are just as fun as ever.  They've dropped the innuendo in favor of less provocative names like "Skid Vicious".  But they still have an image of Big Ben splashed prominently across the pouch in what can only be considered a suggestive manner.  I love the fun and funky colors and the urban grunge feel that they have.  And what's more, they have a unique feature that I haven't seen anywhere else (which is a lot coming from me).  And that is the printed waistband.  On these briefs there is a plaid, printed waistband with the logo printed over the plaid.  It's very unique and very fun and it will definitely turn heads peeking above your jeans.  I also love the use of different colored elastic on the banding (purple on the legs, black on the pouch) in a continuation of that urban feel. 

As for the quality of these things.  I do want to point out that previously Ginch Gonch encouraged you to hand-wash all their undies.  While that was a pain in the you-know-where, it did help preserve them.  Now they are encouraging you to machine was them.  While this is much more convenient, it definitely does seem to take a toll on the bright colors.  The blacks fade to gray after a few washes, which is not the end of the world but is a little annoying.  On this particular pair though, the fading just kind of adds to the whole urban aesthetic.  

Overall, I feel like Ginch Gonch has changed their stuff a lot.  They've gone from super small, hyper-sexual, and hyper suggestive names and styles with super soft fabric to more mainstream cuts and mundane names using an average fabric.  So now Ginch Gonch isn't just for the super out there and sexy, but is trying to appeal to everyone.  While this is probably good in terms of a marketing strategy, I feel like this may have lost them some of their original followers that helped them to build their caché. 

MY RATING:
Overall, I give the Ginch Gonch Skid Vicious Briefs a total score of 7 based on the following criteria:
FIT -- 8 (out of 10) - Needs to be shrunk initially.  Still a little roomy. 
COMFORT -- 8 (out of 10) - Average with a more average fabric. 
STYLE -- 10 (out of 10) - Out there and in your face fun.  A little less innuendo than before. 
QUALITY -- 8 (out of 10) - Not as soft fabric as before.  Fades after a few washings.    
VALUE -- 7 (out of 10) - A little pricey, especially for something that will fade.  But they do have good sales. 

**********8

2 comments:

Craig said...

when will you review Macho Underwear

UMan said...

As I believe I've mentioned to you before. I have not tried Macho, therefore it is not on my list to review. If you represent Macho please send me a private email.