By  on April 9, 2009

Low-rise pants have had an unintended but far-reaching impact on men’s underwear — the proliferation of boldly colored and heavily branded waistbands.

In the last two years, as men’s underwear continued to evolve as a fashion accessory, the two-inch elastic strip that tops undergarments has become a focal point of design and marketing. The waistband — originally tasked with the humble job of keeping the garment on the hips — now functions as part billboard and part design lab, where underwear companies experiment with color and pattern, new printing techniques, larger widths and oversize logos.

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