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Which Spanx shorts are best?

Looking and feeling your best in a nice outfit can be difficult, especially if you have troublesome areas around the hips, stomach or waist. If you want something to provide a bit of contouring and help tuck in those areas, Spanx shorts are the way to go.

The best ones are the Spanx Shapewear Tummy Control Power Short, as they offer enough coverage and compression to smooth out these areas for a perfect fit.

What to know before you buy Spanx shorts


The main purpose of Spanx and other shapewear is to help smooth out and sculpt the body to emphasize its natural shape, especially when wearing form-fitting clothes. It does this through a combination of compression, elasticity and support.

As with other shapewear, Spanx shorts are typically worn as an undergarment. Most of these shorts provide contouring support at the rear, hips, waist and thighs. While most are uniform, some offer additional lift at the backside, too.

Target areas

Spanx shorts look similar to regular shorts, but they tend to sit higher on the waist so that they can cover more of the stomach and the belly button. Due to their design, they also typically sculpt the wearer’s hips, waist, rear and thighs. This makes them ideal for those who carry extra weight in these areas. If you’re looking for more coverage, consider getting a bodysuit, undershirt or pants.

Compression level

All shapewear comes with different levels of compression. Spanx offers the following levels, each with a different impact on problematic areas:

  • Level 1: Smooth
  • Level 2: Shape
  • Level 3: Sculpt

The lower the level, the least amount of contouring and support. If you want light coverage around the waist and hips, choose a Level 1 or Level 2 pair of Spanx shorts. But if you’re looking for shapewear that provides maximum sculpting, go with Level 3 compression.

For the most part, you can safely wear Spanx shorts throughout the day. However, if you choose Level 3 compression, it’s best to only wear the undergarment for specific occasions.

What to look for in quality Spanx shorts


Most Spanx clothing is constructed out of synthetic materials such as nylon or spandex, both of which are elastic and durable. Some shorts and other undergarments are made from microfiber or cotton. However, these materials aren’t as breathable and can be uncomfortable to wear for long periods or in hot weather.


It’s important to know the right size before getting Spanx shorts or any other shapewear. If they’re too big or loose, they won’t provide the right level of compression or smooth out the areas you want them to. They could also be visible through your outerwear. But if they’re too small, they could leave you feeling restricted or cause small bulges to form when wearing them.

Spanx uses standard sizes ranging from extra-small (XS) to plus-size or 3X. However, the brand also uses the following numerical measurements:

  • Size 0: 24.6 to 26.5-inch waist and 32 to 34.5-inch hips
  • Size 2 to 4: 27 to 30.5-inch waist and 35 to 37.5-inch hips
  • Size 6 to 8: 31 to 33-inch waist and 38 to 40.5-inch hips
  • Size 10 to 12: 33.5 to 35.5-inch waist and 41 to 43-inch hips
  • Size 14 to 16: 36 to 39-inch waist and 43.5 to 45.5-inch hips
  • Size 18 to 20: 39.5 to 42-inch waist and 46 to 49.5-inch hips
  • Size 22 to 24: 42.5 to 45-inch waist and 50 to 53.5-inch hips
  • Size 26 to 28: 45.5 to 48-inch waist and 54 to 56-inch hips

When in doubt, measure your hips and waist to determine the right sizing and ensure the best fit.


Most Spanx shorts come in nude, black, white or tan. However, some come in light colors such as blues, yellows or pinks.

Your shapewear should not be visible beneath your day clothes. Choose dark undergarments when wearing a darker outfit. Or wear lighter shapewear with lighter outer clothes.

Consider your skin tone as well. For example, if you have darker skin and want to wear something lightweight, go with darker shapewear. Test out the color combination in the mirror to make sure it looks the way you want it to.

How much you can expect to spend on Spanx shorts

Spanx shorts generally cost $15-$40, though some cost more than $60. The more expensive ones usually provide more coverage or have a higher compression level.

Spanx shorts FAQ

What are some tips for wearing shapewear?

A. When wearing high-compression shorts or other shapewear, try not to eat or drink a lot to avoid discomfort. If there’s a chance you’ll need to use the restroom while wearing the undergarment, choose one with a gusset to make the process easier. In humid environments, apply baby powder to your skin to make putting on the shapewear easier.

How do I clean Spanx shorts?

A. Unless the tag says otherwise, you can generally put Spanx undergarments in the washing machine on a gentle cycle. Only use cold water, and let them air-dry. When in doubt, hand-wash them with cold water and gentle detergent.

What are the best Spanx shorts to buy?

Top Spanx shorts

Spanx Shapewear Tummy Control Power Short

Spanx Shapewear Tummy Control Power Short

What you need to know: These shorts reliably cover the hips, thighs, waist and rear for smooth contouring.

What you’ll love: Made with spandex and nylon, they’re stretchy, flexible and comfortable for all-day wear. They come in seven sizes, from small to 3X Plus. They’re also available in five colors, including black, nude and brown.

What you should consider: Put them on slowly or they could tear at the seams.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top Spanx shorts for the money

Spanx Everyday Shaping Panties Boyshorts

Spanx Everyday Shaping Panties Boyshorts

What you need to know: These midrise boyshorts provide gentle compression, making them perfect for general use.

What you’ll love: Constructed primarily from nylon, they offer moderate shaping and have a flat leg opening. They’re designed for daily use and have an athletic fit. They come in three colors.

What you should consider: They tend to ride up, especially when sized incorrectly.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Macy’s

Worth checking out

Werena Seamless Shaping Shapewear Shorts

Werena Seamless Shaping Shapewear Shorts

What you need to know: These slimming shorts are perfect for anyone looking to control the tummy area and help shape the backside.

What you’ll love: Available in three colors, as well as in a set of two, these shorts are seamless, elastic and comfortable for general use. They’re designed to stay in place throughout the day without rolling or riding up.

What you should consider: They tend to run small.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Angela Watson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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