Two-Cents On The Tuck

Published, March 25, 2011

WHILE stumbling through the internet, I came across an article, self imposing a series of strict rules on men’s fashion. A catalog of fashion faux pas for the up and coming.

To tuck or not to tuck? That was the unasked question decisively answered by the self-proclaimed Marquis De Couture! Clearly this Charlatan of the Faubourg Saint-Honoré has an excessive amount of time on his hands, and no other style improprieties have surfaced since the '80s to attract his scrutiny--has he forgotten mullets, Miley Cyrus, Lady Ga-Ga? How about shants, those things that are neither pants nor shorts, but something rather disgustingly in between?

I do not claim to be the GQ equivalent of a fashion authority--I once donned a pair of white linen pants paired with a navy blue double breasted blazer accented by a red and blue diagonally striped tie. It was a great Ralph-Lauren-Polo-Yacht-Club-Cologne-Ad look, except for the face--but I am well versed in the AUTISTIC art of the tuck, and PK, you are wrong! There are those occasions when the tuck is the bomb!

While giving your less than sensational advice equal play, I offer my objections with pictures, and a closing comment.  

4 Reasons Men Should Not Tuck in a Shirt
November 17, 2010, By P.K. Lassiter

I have a friend named Pete. Great guy. Two kids, career on the rise, single … and generally a man about the town. And no, Pete is not my first name, or is it a euphemism for me. Pete is real. And Pete may be you…

Like I said, Pete has everything going for him. Including all of his aforementioned attributes, he’s a funny, gregarious, likeable guy. Pete’s makin’ it happen. Except for one thing. Pete tucks his shirt in too tight.

So what?... you say. Big deal. So Pete’s neat. He wants to be presentable. Look his best. Clean cut. Professional. An upstanding citizen. He should tuck his shirt in, and as tight as the lug nuts on his truck too. Right? Wrong.

And let me make this clear, I’m focusing on the social aspect of shirt tucking, at work, tuck to your hearts content. I’m not the boss. Maybe he likes it that way. They’re usually ‘tight tuckers’ too.

Socially, it never fails. I’ll step out with my buddies – and one of them (sometimes more… unfortunately) has their shirt jacked in so tight it looks as if it was painted on. It also never fails that when they make their approach (some are better than others) the first thing a woman notices is the ultra tight tuck. It’s never good, regardless of shirt type. Here’s why…

1. The button down. Unless you’re 6’3” and 200 lbs. or less -- let the panels loose. The way button down shirts are cut; they simply do not flatter most male physiques. Especially those of the average American male in his 30’s. Yes, this means you. You have to be a lean, mean fighting machine to get away with the ultra tight tuck. And even then it rarely looks great.

THE Ultra Tight Tuck!
Ultra Great!

2. The T-shirt. T-shirts should never be tucked in. Ever. And I mean never. I don’t care if it’s a thousand dollar, golden threaded, Ralph Lauren Purple label, or one of those disastrous Ed Hardy numbers… If you are tucking in your T-shirts then you’re so far gone help might not be available to you. Stop. End of story.

THE T-shirt Tuck!!
Who says never?

3. The Jersey. Unless you’re getting ready for a league game, then leave the jersey un-tucked (better yet, in the house). And yes, I do see guys walking around the street wearing jerseys tucked in. Not only does it look ridiculous, it usually precedes a request for spare change. Better to just leave the jersey in the drawer until game time. And even then, I wouldn’t tuck it in unless the ref made me.

4. The sweater. See # 2. You see what I mean? Take a look around the tavern/bar/lounge/restaurant next time and study ‘the tuck’. 99% of the time, it’s not a pretty sight. Hence my advising against it. Actually, I’m not advising… I’m ordering.

THE Sweater Tuck!!!
100% Perfect

So let those shirt ends out. Give them air. Let the panels run free and see the light of day. It’ll convey a relaxed attitude. An effortless ease. A hipper approach to life. You hear me, Pete? Are you listening? (This means you).


John M. …Wearing your shirt out is nothing more than an excuse to perpetuate the sloppy look - torn clothes, uncombed hair, ballcaps indoors, etc. Who died and made you Joe Cool? … p.s. You shouldn't wear your underwear exposed either. - 02/20/2011

Steve P. OK, I felt the need to chime in here. I must admit, I am a t-shirt tucker. But I do this for your sake. I am one of those guys who is over weight and I don't want to expose you to my navel when I reach up for something, yawn, sit back, etc. … BTW is it ok to tuck the t-shirt in my underwear ;-) - 12/30/2010

Junior M. I tuck but let the edge drape over a bit to allow for flexibility. On a different note, what about buttoning up all the way on the collar of polo/golf type shirts especially? … For a while i wore these type of shirts this way and then i stopped because I felt self concious in public … Next time I will follow my instinct and not worry about what others think. - 12/30/2010

Ethan’s Dad. Lassiter, I’m sure Pete, your unclaimed alter ego, is a “funny, gregarious, likeable guy,” but he clearly needs to let his guard down and learn to Stim; embrace those repressed inner tics and live a little, or a lot, depending on the sensory overload.


As for Steve, it is okay to tuck into your underwear, especially if it is soothing to the emotional roller coaster crashing around the theme park of your mind. And if you do, John, then it is more then okay, it’s imperative, that you let your underwear show; it makes the ensemble complete!

Junior, fashion should not be what others think is acceptable, stylish, or cool! It should be what works best for you!

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