Since founding C-IN2 three years ago, Greg Sovell has been busy creating a collection of underwear essentials that quickly became the foundation of men’s wardrobes the world over. With the introduction of the Sling Support system, Sovell sparked a frenzy of innovation centered on male enhancement. I got a chance to get some answers about where he’s headed next on his quest to find the perfect pair of briefs.
You started out by creating a basic line of regular, everyday underwear that quickly became extremely popular. What’s so special about C-IN2 underwear?
With all the products I’ve created, the goal has been to do something different – there’s no more need for one more fly front brief. It’s about always making improvements on all the different part of the garment, silhouette, fabric, fit, everything plays a part.
You’re quoted as “realizing that men weren’t really getting what they wanted” out of the underwear they were buying, what is it that’s been missing?
Most men’s underwear doesn’t give room for “the boys.” In women’s foundations, those allowances are very considerate. Men’s garments simply didn’t allow space for our three dimensional body parts like women’s did. I looked at what was out there, and then I looked at my own underwear at the end of the day. I thought, there has to be a better way to do this – I want to look better than this.
Who actually came up with the sling support system?
I created the Sling Support system myself. I knew that male dancers were using all sorts of tricks underneath what they were wearing, and I wanted to try to bring that to our product. The main focus was that everything had to be real; no pads, nothing fake. The function is to rearrange what a man has already got, not make him into something he’s not.
How do other fashion trends affect what’s going on at C-IN2? Where do you think the evolution of men’s underwear is headed?
These days, people are dressing for the event, so what you’re doing affects what you wear. We put together a whole fashion story, and bring it all down to underwear. Metallics are big right now in all kinds of fashion, so we’re looking to see how we can add that into a print or a fabric.
When you build a campaign that people see as “sexy” – that’s a successful campaign. With our newest campaign, we realized that there’s a certain level of fantasy that people have about being in prison. We were told by one woman that it made her uncomfortable; the campaign isn’t supposed to make you comfortable, it’s supposed to make you notice.
If you weren’t designing underwear, what would you be doing?
I’d probably be designing other clothing. We’ll probably move to other clothing categories, probably soon. We have to keep our brand integrity intact so that when we enter new categories, people see us with the same standard of design and quality.
Working in the underwear industry, you’ve got to be conscious of sex appeal. How do you define “sexy”?
Really, less is more. The guys that don’t try so hard end up looking better in the end. A pair of jeans and a comfortable tshirt is more sexy than being all done up because you have to be comfortable. When you’re comfortable, you’re confident and confidence is sexy.
The US is the only place where the speedo has been taboo for so long; will the sling support system bring the age of the American speedo?
Coming out of cold water, any help a guy can get is needed. You go to the beach in Brazil and people are not wearing what we wear here, and I think it’s a little bit close-minded. People seem to want to fit everyone into stereotypes, and we should be going back to what people look good in. Even with boxer-style trunks, the hems are coming up because it just looks better.
Not everyone looks like the models in your ads or on your boxes. What are your suggestions for everyone else who wants to look good in their underwear?
They just have to fit. Not everyone is a fashion model, and this is where certain people wear things that make them comfortable, not necessarily look good. We make silhouettes for all different bodies, and you have to recognize what looks good on you and what kind of body you have. We have a tendency to cover up what we don’t want other people to see instead of finding what makes us look best.