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How to Master the Fake Tuck

fake tuck man repeller

An unsuccessful Google search has made something clear to me: If you are struggling to learn what I consider to be one of the most valuable styling tricks in the arsenal of ways to create an optical illusion, you will continue to struggle until someone else takes God’s work of developing a brief, but helpful guide into their own hands. I never thought I’d be this person—it just didn’t seem like my mission, you know?—but recently, a commenter asked, “Fake tucking: how are people doing it?” She elaborated, “Google isn’t delivering anything that seems like it would work with a chunky knit.”

And I’ll tell you why—because the majority of people assume you’re supposed to start from the front when really, it’s the back. As you can see, this is not like learning to wipe. Here is a very simple, 3-step guide to doing it (fake-tucking your shirt, not wiping).

The obvious step 0, which I’ll leave out, btw, is to pick a sweater on which to execute your fake tuck. I’d suggest one that is relatively long, and with a wide enough hem that you can successfully execute step 1.

Step 1: Twist

Create a twist at the bottom of the back of your sweater. To do this, gather the hem together as if you’re about to put it in a ponytail but then, instead of doing that, wring it like you’re trying to squeeze the water out of a wet towel.

Step 2: Tuck

Now, it’s commonplace that when you’re dealing with a wet towel, you’ll actually un-wring it, too, but because this is not a towel we’re talking about, I’m going to tell you to keep that wring in place. If you want to sing “Put a Ring on It,” you’re more than welcome to, I’d just ask that you send me a voice note while you are fulfilling the very simple step 2 of tucking the twist into the back of your trousers.

Now the thing about this tuck is that you must only let in the bottom of the twist, otherwise, it might look like you’re trying to hide your tail in the back of your pants And per these pants, btw, this trick works best for something that is high waist, either a skirt or trousers be they denim or some other material that clings to your body like a newborn baby or jellyfish or terrible ex-boyfriend or venus fly-trap or even melted cheese. Moving on!

Step 3: Fluff

Now comes the nuanced final step. Your twist has been tucked from behind and you have purportedly noticed that from your profile’s view, you can barely tell that’s a twist tucked into your pants, it just looks like a sweater doing what it’s supposed to do, blousing slightly from behind above your waist line, displaying your ass like it is in a showcase, which I guess to a degree, it is. But from the front, you’re either cropped in too tight because of the strength of your twist, or you’re scrunching up like a face on Warheads.

Either way, if the sweater is long, it should be folded in once over, as a natural reaction to the twist. Now if you’re cropped in too tight, it’s time to fluff. Pull your twist out slightly not by redoing it, but by joojing the front of your shirt (e.g. picking at it like you’re pinching a kid’s cheeks) until enough of it has come undone and you just look like you’re tucked in and that sweater is casually, seamlessly, cascading over your waistline. If you’re scrunching up, surprise! The process is the same. DJ, fluff it up and thus behold, you’ve mastered the fake tuck. Congratulations on ending 2019 with a crucial new skill under (or is it above?) your belt and thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to pack so many dad jokes into one single story. I love you so much.

Good night, good rest, and godspeed.

The Row sweater over Chloe blouse -- detachable collar option here, Chanel pants and bootsThe Row sweater over Chloe blouse -- detachable collar option here, Chanel pants and boots

Leandra M. Cohen

Leandra M. Cohen is an intern at, but also the founder of Man Repeller.

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