In a slight shift away from making super technical shorts, Rip Curl have gone and created a tough as nails pair of boardshorts with the help of Codura – The Rip Curl Mirage 3/2/One. 

The boardshorts feature 3 contrasting fabrics- Cordura at the waistband and back panel for  durability (apparently reef proof!), super stretch neoprene side panels and Mirage Stretch material for the front panel, all stitched together (no welded seams on this one) with a nice 19inch length.

rip curl 3/2/one boardshorts review


The back panel is made with the help of Cordura, and apparently is reef proof. Although I'm hesitant to want to test that, ha.

Mirage Stretch

The stretch you've become accustomed to from Rip Curl in their range of Mirage boardshorts can be found in the front panels. 


Setting off the trifecta of materials, you'll find the side panels are neoprene (E6?) with laser cut perforations. 


Shredding in, and protecting your butt if surf over reef but fall a lot. These are pretty damn good to surf in, I kid you not. Amazing. This is one guy's opinion though and I've heard from others that they're too heavy. But for me, the extra weight of neoprene and Cordura gave me a nice feeling of security when surfing.

The Rip Curl 3/2/One might be the best shorts on the market, for people who want a technical style of boardshort but with security that these will last longer than your typical tech trunks.

rip curl 3/2/one boardshorts review



The Rip Curl 3/2/One’s have a closed loop waistband (meaning it doesn’t open up like traditional waistbands), which is new for them (and like the Patagonia shorts we tested) but is welcomed as it creates a secure feeling with the boardshorts.

The material ages in such a way that it makes it feel like they’re much older (in a good way, like they just ‘fit’) than they are. Running a 19inch inseam, you’ve got an above the knee fit that isn’t too short or too long for anyone. I kinda think 19 (maybe 18.5?) is the perfect length for boardshorts. 

Note – they are, randomly, very true to size so if you’re traditionally a 32 in Rip Curl get a 33. That waistband (along with your hips, tubby) don’t lie. 



Probably an easy follow on from ‘comfort’ here, in that these performed well above my initial expectations. The main area that generally sucks with boardshorts is the flex/stretch at the gooch intersection and the waistband. 

Gooch section worked a treat, good amount of flex when doing morning yoga on the beach before paddling out. Also good flex at the critical section of sitting up on your board and swinging for a wave. 

Waistband, as I mentioned earlier, is a new thing for Rip Curl but is a welcomed addition. There’s good security as it hang off your hips (or muffin tops, cough) during al activities, no slouching down the body to make way for plumber crack.



I was surprised here – no welded seams, no super light-weight materials, etc – but these are really comfortable boardshorts, to the point that the more you surf in them the better they get. 

General surfing at your local and these held up every step of the way. Again, I wasn’t expecting such a high comfort factor and it might differ for you, but for me, these were really solid. 

The only catch I found, which is generally a big catch, was when doing runarounds/laps during a surf and my walking/jogging turned into the dreaded waddling pretty quickly with a wild leg/nuts rash. Odds on once you develop the ability to withstand that it’ll be smooth sailing from there on in.  



The 3/2/One is readily available on the Rip Curl Website for $100 AUD (which is pretty great value I might add), from all of Rip Curl’s flagship stores and most likely available from any surf store you can walk into (support ya local!).

Basically, if you want a pair then you’d be hard pressed to not find a pair unless you’re a size 44 or something. 

Buy from Rip Curl’s Online Store in Aus
Buy from Rip Curl’s Online Store in USA
Check Rip Curl’s Stockist list


The Rip Curl 3/2/One boardshorts are a great value pair of shorts that are rugged, yet technical. And if you can only get one pair of surfing shorts this season, these are it. 

The Cordura was a surprise inclusion from a material perspective, and I initially thought it was a marketing tactic. But after surfing in them, and noticing the difference they made to the short I was sold. These are a really solid pair of shorts from Rip Curl, maybe even upsetting the Fanning’s I always claim as best in class.

If there’s anything that irked me about them it was that there are two pockets on the shorts. There is a back pocket and a side pocket, why do I need mulitple pockets on surfing trunks. Oh, and don’t be out doing superbank runarounds in these, high risk of wild rash and having ya balls fall out.  😬

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rip curl 3/2/one boardshorts review

If you enjoyed this review you can visit our Product Reviews page for more, including a recent run of Technical Boardshorts. We’ve got more product reviews coming soon if there’s anything you’d like for us to review email us.

Again, if you’re interested in buying the Rip Curl 3/2/One Boardshorts hit the links below:

Buy from Rip Curl’s Online Store
Check Rip Curl’s Stockist list

Alternatively, if you’re going to be driving, give the Lipped Surfers Podcast a listen. Below is their Boardshorts 2019 episode where they deep dive into the creation and performance of the Rip Curl 3/2/One Ultimate boardshorts. and the Patagonia Hydroflow boardshorts

Featuring interviews with the creators and designers and a full review against all of last years best performing shorts.