Like they say, "Life's better in boardshorts." Billabong has that right!
While I definetly agree with Billabong's slogan, when it comes to surfing in boardshorts, you have to make sure you get the right pair.
When I look for a pair of trunks to surf in, I tend to pick a pair that doesn't have bulky drawstrings but I prefer drawstrings over buttons. Zippers are definetly a "NO" as well.. I prefer a velcro fly or like the O'neil Superfreaks, where there is no real opening.
Surfable boardshorts should also fit correctly in the waist and length. You don't want your shorts falling down around your knees when you get in the water or your crack hanging out while you're paddling. Trust me you don't want that upper white butt/crack area sun burned, so get a pair of trucks that fit around the waist and make sure you consider stretching. Most trunks will stretch a bit once they get wet and are worn out a bit. When it comes to length, I like to keep them above the knees. You don't want your boardshorts cuffing your knees when your trying to surf. I know most of you like to wear shorts that cover your knees and for your everyday pair of boardshorts that you roll around town in or kick it on the beach with that's fine, but have a pair of boardshorts that fit right that you can surf in.
Material is key as well. I have a pair of RVCA boadshorts that fit me great, both in the waist and length, and they are super leight weight, stretchy and flexible. Almost feels like I'm surfing naked. You don't want a pair of trucks that are bulky and heavy with pockets all over the place, at least not for surfing in. One pocket on the side is fine, and I prefer a velcro pocket, not zipper. Also the pocket should include something to strap your car key to. Most trunks have this feature and make sure you use it correctly so you don't get stuck without a key and a ride. The new boardshort technology and materials are great because they are mostly quick drying. Bulky thicker materials that don't dry quick, I stay away from. Walking around in wet trunks is no fun. You don't want chafing between the legs.
For those long surf sessions and those tropical surf vacations, you should try a pair of bicycle shorts or similar. This will prevent chafing which causes discomfort in and out of the water. I recently use a pair of thin neoprene shorts from Xcel that worked well from my trip to Indonesia.
My personal favorites for surfing trucks are from O'neil and RVCA. Obviously there are many brands to choose from and they all have different cuts so make sure to find a pair that fit you well. Billabong, Volcom, and Quiksilver all make great boardshorts. Oakley even has some boardshorts on the market now to check out.
You surf to shred, so shop2shred!
Get in the water!