What the Tuck?! When should you tuck in your shirt?

Categories Fashion


Tees, polos, business shirts . . . whichever style you’re wearing, you don a shirt every day, so it’s important to know when to have them tucked in or leave them tucked out.


Not only should an undershirt be tucked in to your trousers, it should also be tucked into your undies to kill off any chance of it flapping around beneath your other layers. It’s purpose is to absorb your sweat, not to be seen.


If the occasion is so casual that you’re wearing a tee, leave it untucked — and even when it’s paired with a blazer at a slightly more formal do, tucking it in runs the risk of looking like C-grade pop star from the 1980s or a Gold Coast property developer whose idea of style is frosted tips and white leather shoes.

Polo shirt

The even hemline is an indication that the polo is designed to be untucked, unless you’re desperate to look like one of those preppy wankers who lectures you about his dad’s career as a barrister or how it’s not actually that hard to buy property in Sydney.

Casual button-down

Tucking in a less formal button-down can emit a bit of a ‘dad going to church on a Sunday morning’ vibe, but it depends on the context. A few Saturday evening drinks with your friends at a nice bar? Leave it out. Dinner with the in-laws? Tuck it in. The cut is versatile enough to straddle both ends of the spectrum.


Formal shirt

Business shirts are cut longer to make sure they don’t slip out during the day, and wearing them out just looks strange — like a 14-year-old kid who’s raced to the bus stop and as an act of defiance lets his billowy school shirt flap around in the breeze. The curved hem is the giveaway these shirts should never be untucked, and make sure the placket aligns with the fly of your trousers to appear neat and symmetrical.


Hawaiian shirt

If you find yourself pondering whether or not you should tuck in your Hawaiian shirt, pose yourself another question instead: Why the hell do you own a Hawaiian shirt in the first place? Other loud button-ups should be left untucked — if the occasion’s informal enough that you’re wearing a pineapple print short-sleeved shirt, it’s informal enough to leave it untucked.


Tucking in a big bulky knit will only make your waistline look big and bulky, but whether or not to tuck in a jumper depends on the thickness of your other layers — if you’re wearing a thin jumper with a blazer and some thicker trousers, then tucking your sweater could look quite smart in a more formal setting. As a rule, though, keep jumpers untucked.