Sis, man, change your broeks! One in five men don’t wear clean undies.

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Mens underwearI love men. But they seem to have a different relationship to dirt than women do. And now it turns out that – just as we suspected – they don’t often wear clean underwear. Seriously, okes?

Fewer than eight in 10 men change their pants every day, according to new research which reveals the dirty truth about men’s underwear habits.

While 95% of women don new knickers every morning, this figure drops to just 78% of men in Britain. Latest research into the nation’s laundry habits finds 87% of all British adults change their pants and socks on a daily basis.

Regionally, those in the south east and East Anglia are the most fastidious about changing their underwear, with almost 91% changing their socks and pants on a daily basis compared to just 81% of those living in the north west.

Singletons are much less likely to put on fresh undies than their married counterparts – 82% versus 88%, said market analysts Mintel.

Richard Caines, senior consumer analyst, said: ‘There is a distinct whiff of laziness among men in the UK today when it comes to underwear. You might assume that for personal hygiene reasons everyone puts on clean underwear when they get dressed at the start of the day, yet only eight in 10 men appear to be doing so. It seems that the influence of a partner is a positive one when it comes to changing underwear and socks, with those who are married more likely to change their underwear on a daily basis.’

When it comes to clothes washing, 42% of British households put on a wash two or three times a week, meanwhile, almost four in ten (38%) households put on four or more wash loads a week.

While a large proportion of clothes are washed when they are not visibly dirty, with over half (52%) of adults wearing shirts or tops only once before putting them in the wash, only a small minority (16%) wait for these items to look visibly dirty before washing.

Just half of homes (53%) wash bedding every week, but three quarters (74%) of people wash towels at least weekly.

Meanwhile, ironing tops the list of the nation’s most hated laundry tasks. This household chore is hated by as many as 40% of Brits, while around the same number (37%) admit it is one of the worst household chores. Ironing is most likely to be done just once a week, with a third (32%) of adults making ironing a weekly household chore, meanwhile, a quarter (27%) of people do ironing less than once a week or not at all.

An enthusiastic 12% of the nation are ironing addicts, ironing all clothing items including underwear, meanwhile, two thirds of Brits (64%) only iron items that really need an iron. And it seems that the age of gender equality has yet to be fully realised, at least in terms of household chores, as the nation’s women are more than twice (79%) as likely as men (37%) to take the main responsibility for all the main laundry tasks in the home. While the majority of men of most ages have some responsibility for laundry tasks, men aged 55 and over are significantly less likely to be involved, just 56% of men aged 55 and over load and put on the washing machine compared to as many as 81% of men aged between 25 and 34.

Among men who are married or living with a partner, women take on the main responsibility for laundry tasks in the vast majority of homes. For example, only 19% of men living as a couple take the main responsibility for putting on the washing machine compared with 83% of women living with a partner. Mr Caines said: ‘If men are involved with laundry it is most likely to be as part of a shared responsibility, but over time their level of involvement has been increasing. A generational shift is certainly being seen, with men under 55 significantly more likely to share some responsibility for laundry tasks.’

I’m guessing the stats are probably worse in reality – it’s almost certain that many people questioned for the survey were too embarrassed to tell the truth. And while these statistics are for Britain, is there any hope that it’s different here in South Africa?

This article originally appeared in the Daily Mail

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