While there is always time and place for the rough and tumble look, a man must know that looking his best always involves a tucked-in, buttoned-down shirt. A polished finish and sharp profile involves an ideal tuck. Because the nuances of this particular practice in fashion can be lost on most men, the following guide can help provide a boost in knowledge that you need in order to raise your profile when it comes to your sophistication and appearance as a gentleman.
The first thing to understand are the requirements for the general finish along the front of the waist. A clean gig line is key, meaning that you should have a flawless and straight line that runs from the stitching of your shirt down to the base of your pants. This vertical guideline should align with the center of your chin in order to provide visual focus and symmetry. The belt buckle, fly, and buttons on your shirt should have a crisp and tidy alignment.
The vast majority of men only need to deal with two basic tucks. The first of these is related to tucking while wearing a basic set of trousers. Putting on the shirt and tucking after the pants have already been buttoned always results in tell-tell signs of amateur bundling along the edges. Avoid this faux pas by putting the shirt on first while keeping the shirt tails outside of the underpants. Keeping the shirt tails flat, put the trousers on last, and button them so that they snugly secure your tuck. This approach is all about order and ease.
The second tuck that every gentleman should master is the military tuck. This technique is ideal for shirts where there is some extra fabric in play around the waist. Tuck the shirt into the pants while leaving some extra fabric exposed around the pant edges. Hold the extra fabric between the thumb and forefinger on both sides in order to create a neat crease that you will secure in place along the love handles using the natural snugness of your pant waistband.
With these two techniques mastered, you are well on your way to becoming a full-fledged gentleman. As a little extra tip for most readers, there are some shirts that should almost never be tucked. These include turtlenecks, Hawaiian shirts, and the vast majority of t-shirts.