One of the editors that turned this puzzle down also wasn't familiar with cheeky and hipster, but a woman on his staff who responded to my submission had no problem identifying the theme.
William Wright 🤓13:05 · 12 months ago
Good puzzle! I wouldn't have found it too hard or too edgy in a big publication. I looked and it's easy to find references to boxers/briefs (as a control for reading women's underwear as unnecessarily sexualized) as underwear in the NYTXW, and thong was once clued as "Go-go dancer's tip holder" which seems more overtly racy than just naming the garment.
I've seen theme's based on men's underwear (NYT: 04/30/2018, WSJ: 01/12/2021) so I figured this was fair game, "too edgy" was one response and the other was that the hipster and cheeky styles were too unfamiliar (well, maybe for men).