Join us for a little jaunt through fashion history: Not since the ’90s have we shoved our shirttails into our trousers. Why bother when Millennium-era crop tops reigned supreme? Then came 2010, and the tunic/legging combo was the silhouette to beat. However, now in 2017, we’ve come full circle and are ready to tuck in our tops once again. Here’s how to do it without looking like you just walked off the set of Melrose Place.

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tuck shirt turtleneck

Opt for a Snug Turtleneck

Look for a shirt that’s fitted but not too tight to avoid looking like those dreaded matching-shirt family portraits we all knew so well. On the other hand, too much extra fabric is a tucking (heh) nightmare. Aim for somewhere in the middle for the perfect balance.

tuck shirt loose

Or Try a Looser Blouse, Too

Just remember what we said about too much fabric. Silky button-downs work well since the fabric slides across itself and won’t feel bulky inside your waistband. Opt for a high-waisted pair of bottoms down below to avoid losing your waist in the flowy silhouette up top.

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Add a Western Belt

Super-skinny belts and, conversely, oversize cinchers have fallen to the wayside. The most on-trend ones are of medium thickness and even have a bit of a Western flair (or at least a larger buckle than you've been used to). That simple brown or black leather version hiding in the back of your closet pairs nicely with a tucked blouse (and just about everything else you own). 

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tuck graphic tee
Melodie Jeng/Getty Images

Go for a Graphic Tee but Be Relaxed

Business in front, rock star in back. Keep your waist defined by tucking the front of your cotton shirt into your bottoms, then let the tail hang loose in back for a cool-girl ensemble that’s still polished enough to avoid looking sloppy.

tuck shirt half tuck

Experiment with a Side-to-Side Half-Tuck

Achieve street-style status with this easy trick. Instead of tucking in the front of your button-down (as you’ve heard), tuck in just one side. Just keep everything else a bit elevated (oh hello, waist-slimming culottes) to avoid looking like you just rolled out of bed.

tuck shirt jacket
Christian Vierig/Getty Images

You Can Even Tuck Your Jacket

On days when a blazer or denim coat is necessary, close a few buttons over your blouse, then secure the very front in the waistband of your bottoms. The overall effect is both flattering (because you’re defining your waist) and totally fashion-forward. 

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