Capsules, On Motherhood, Style, Style Favorites, Style Try Ons

Mastering the Front Tuck (and hiding the Mom Pooch!)

**FIRST…if I could express to you all how much your comments on my last post meant to me, I would do so with big hugs and face squeezes all around.  I read every single one, most of which made me cry, and I’ll be forever grateful you took the time to share. It touched me more than you’ll probably EVER know to read your stories, your words of encouragement to other mamas, and to know you trusted me with that information about your personal lives.  THANK YOU.  Beyond touched.  

Thank you.  πŸ’—

The front tuck.
Some hate it.  Some love it.
I used to be in one camp, and now, with the extra fluff left over from four babies in five years, I am FIRMLY in the latter group.  (Well, maybe not “firmly”…more like I’m jiggly in the latter group.πŸ˜‰)  Want to know why?  Because, if done just right, the leftover mom-fluff can be disguised with a bit o’ front tuckage…let me show you how!

Okay, so this is a shot my hubby took so I could have him test the lighting before shooting these little how-to photos, and it’s certainly not my best angle.  πŸ˜‰  BUT!  It serves as the perfect example for why I heart front tuck.  And…I think I know WHY it’s not my best angle.  Nothing changed between this pic and those from the graphic up top….except that I tucked in my shirt.  That’s it.  I mean, this before picture doesn’t look awful or anything like that.  It’s a comfy, flowy shirt over some skinnies.  Simple enough.  But…I feel like something as small as tucking in the shirt suddenly gave me legs that were once hidden and helped define my waist once more.

“But Erin,” I hear you saying, “I don’t want to tuck in my shirt and possibly accentuate the Mom Muffin even more!  Don’t take away my flowy shirt camouflage!!”  I FEEL YOU MAN.  Doesn’t matter what size we are–if we’re a mom, we’ve got some form of Mom Bod that wasn’t there before kids, and we could all use a few tips and tricks.  (Shout out to Laur from laurenmcbrideblog.com for that quote. πŸ™ŒπŸ»πŸ˜‰)  Don’t get me wrong; I love a loose, flowy top now and again.  However, as evidenced from the two sets of pics above, there’s something to be said for tucking in that shirt to add a little bit of shape to our outfits. Now, here’s where my secret fluff-camouflage front tuck technique comes in….

ONE:  Grab and bunch up the very center of your shirt.  (*Note: this technique will really only work with longer tops that are just a bit flowy or loose).

TWO:  Locate the space between your jeans button and the first belt loop to either side of the button.  (See where I’m pointing?) That’s where we’re going to aim our tuck.  I’ll show you why we’re going off-center in just a sec!

THREE:  Tuck in that front and center section of your shirt all the way into that off-center mark of your jeans.  Get just that section of shirt down in there pretty good.

FOUR:  Now start to gently UNtuck the shirt, lightly blousing it out just around that off-center section of your pants.  Don’t pull it out more than about 2-3 inches as we are still trying to make sure your gorgeous gams will be visible to add length to your hotttt mom bod!! πŸ™ŒπŸ»

FIVE:  Look at where your shirt meets your jeans–see that funny rolled up part?  Go ahead and sort of forward roll it in on itself so that the line/hem/direction of the base of your shirt is continuous all the way around.  (Meaning we don’t want to see the underside of the shirt here–shift or roll that little grouped part forward and align the direction of the hem to match how it encircles your body from the back of your shirt going around.)

SIX: Blouse out the back and sides of your shirt to create that high-low look.  This style is sort of like a shirt-mullet: business/elongated legs in the front…party/flowy comfy shirt in the back!  

See how that off-centered, bloused, kinda swirled part of the shirt creates a layered layer in the front….right where Mom-Pooch can fluff o’er the top o’ skinnies??  Using this little trick, we can still get that put together, longer-legs, defined-waist look without tucking in the shirt straight down and tight which would accentuate ye ole fluff.  πŸ˜‰  Tricks the eye a bit, I think!  

Anyway, I hope this helps with mastering the mystical front tuck, and….now you know why so many of my capsule wardrobe looks include this twisty front tuck-a-roo!  

What do you guys think?  Front tuckers?  Loose and flowy?  And, if you’d like to join up with me and my Cotton Stem Capsule buddies, check out my suuuuuuper easy capsule wardrobe series: just [CLICK HERE] to see what all the fuss is about!  Come say hi on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest, too!  Hugs, buddies!


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  1. Erin (elmorelife) says:

    Shirt Mullet! Copyright that!πŸ˜‚ Now I see what I’ve been doing wrong even though I had this mastered in 8th Grade!πŸ€¦πŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

    • Erin | Cotton Stem says:

      Yesssss, shirt mullet. πŸ™ŒπŸ»πŸ˜‚ It totally was in back in middle school, right?!

  2. Meg Ashman says:

    Okay- that’s amazing. Trying tomorrow- and every day after thisπŸ™ŒπŸ»

    • Erin | Cotton Stem says:

      It’s pretty much life-changing, Meg. πŸ™ŒπŸ»πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‰ But for reals!!

  3. Karlee says:

    Love this!! Also your last post had me like 😭😭😭😭 and I’m not even a mom.

    • Erin | Cotton Stem says:

      Aw, Karlee–thank you for reading it. And I bet it’s something we can all relate to, whether it’s affected us or just someone we love. Appreciate your support! πŸ’—

    • Erin | Cotton Stem says:

      Bahaha, maybe I’ll do that next! πŸ˜‰

  4. Laura says:

    I’m gonna have to try this…I don’t think I’ve tucked my shirt in in at least 11 1/2 years (coincidentally that’s the same age as my oldest 😊)
    Oh…love your nail color too can you share the color/brand

    • Erin | Cotton Stem says:

      Yay, hope you like it! And the nail color in my IG story? That’s called "Let’s Be Friends" by OPI and it’s the gel version. I think they make a regular, too.

    • Erin | Cotton Stem says:

      I mean, it can ONLY help, right?! Especially if we eat a big lunch. πŸ˜‰

  5. Lynn Lam says:

    Front tuck for sure….I love belts but to short to tuck in my shirt completely (short torso). So I do the front tuck….and after 5 kids I need all the help I can get…lol

  6. Jenny says:

    I love this!!! Now I need to go shopping for some long, loose-fitting shirts so I can try it out!

  7. Mallory says:

    This is so great!! Glad I’m not the only one that tucks to hide my mom muffin! Ha ha you are adorable!

  8. Lea says:

    Hi Erin! I am going to give this a try. Although my one and only baby just turned 28 this past year my body has gone through a big change must be the age thing its all going in my mid section πŸ˜” I have been having a hard time putting outfits together because of this…plus the fact that I am only 5’3. Love your blog and IG Thanks for sharing!

    • Erin | Cotton Stem says:

      I hope this helps a little! It sure helps me with my own mom bod mid-section fluff! πŸ˜‰ Thanks for reading, Lea!

  9. Shelly fonda says:

    I def. need to try this trick! Thank you!:) fyi… Love all your IG stories and posts! You are the sweetest!

  10. Tammy says:

    Front tucks are my fave for disguising that mom pooch. I have a shirt just like this and sometimes I tuck tooπŸ˜‰ I don’t look as cute in mine as you do , but maybe now that you have shown us the correct way to "tuck", I will be able to pull it off 😘 This is a great post!! Thank you for sharing!!

  11. Shelby says:

    I’m not a mom, but definitely have extra fluff to hide! I always try to do the yuck but never could get it the way I wanted – love this trick! Thank you for sharing your geniusness πŸ˜‰

  12. Margie says:

    Love this step by step post! I love the front tuck so much!! I’ve been doing this since way before I had my daughter just because it’s an easy way to still show curves under a flowy top! Now I really appreciate it. πŸ˜‚

  13. Mary Chory says:

    I love this!! I can’t wait to try it out! πŸ€— After 2 babies in a year & a half, I surely would like to hide my mom pooch! Lol You are just the cutest! 😊Thanks for all the advice & daily inspiration! 😘

    Mary C.

  14. Lindy says:

    I HAVE to try this!!! Thank you for sharing your Mom bod glamor magic with us! πŸ‘πŸ’•πŸ˜˜

  15. Freida Fletcher says:

    Girl, you’re such a hoot…shirt mullet! I spewed my tea all over my screen with that one! πŸ˜‚

    I always look forward to your posts, and especially your stories. You are so "real", and that’s what makes you so fabulous! Dang, your soul is even gorgeous! Just know you’re such an inspiration to all us readers, and we appreciate and enjoy all your useful tips and love-offerings!

    Off to practice this tucking maneuver…

    • Erin | Cotton Stem says:

      Well, thank you so much for this feedback and kindness–means more than you’ll know, Freida! Such kind people to be met on IG and blog-land, and you are one of them!

  16. Sheila says:

    Thank you for posting this! I wasn’t sure I "should" wear a front tuck, but I had tried it at home and it looks so good! Just might have the courage to wear it out and about now. Thanks!

  17. Jodi @southern_sassy_paints says:

    Great tips!! I always wondered how women did the front tuck! πŸ˜‚

  18. Sarah K says:

    Thank you for posting this! I’m not a mom, but I’ve front-tucked failed for years so this post is a lifesaver for me! πŸ™ŒπŸΌπŸ™ŒπŸΌπŸ™ŒπŸΌ

  19. Bianca says:

    You totally resemble Jessica Stroup so much! You’re very beautiful! Love your blogs! First timer here!

    • Erin | Cotton Stem says:

      Hey Bianca! Well, I am way out of touch bc I had to Google her, but man–thank you!! So sweet, and I’m glad you stopped by!

  20. Mandy says:

    This is so funny, I was trying to tuck in the front of my shirt this morning!!

    I think I need a video though πŸ˜‚

  21. Susan says:

    No baby pooch here. Kid less by choice but still a front tucker and off center shirt knotter.

  22. Jennifer says:

    Love this post, Erin! For a few years my hubby has been bewildered with my "slight" tuck to the side but it totally gives you leggggs! So true and better than looking more like a tent 😳. I need to do the swirly-ruching thingy to add more cool mom vibe, oh yeah! I love following all your real life stuff – thanks for keepin it real (hmm just said thatπŸ™„). Happy Friday! β˜€οΈπŸŒΏ

  23. Olivia says:

    Definitely trying today!!

  24. Lindsey says:

    This is aaa-mazin Erin!! Definatly trying TODAYπŸ™ŒπŸ» Love following all your posts…you definatly know how to keep it real. Way to go momma πŸ‘ŠπŸΌ

  25. Jessica says:

    Hi Erin! This is awesome!! I too have 4 littles 5 years and younger and it’s definitely done a number on my midsection! I will be trying this tomorrow! I love your blog and IG πŸ™‚

  26. Amanda says:

    Ha!! This made me laugh as I saw this on the home page of your blog… So I clicked on it!! I was like, "awesome… she’s gonna do a front tuck!!" (Totally thinking gymnastics as I am a coach) so I scrolled down and was surprised!! LOL!
    AND, I was watching your story tonight and you just make me laugh!! 😊 In a good way…I promise!! You’re so cute!! Love listening to you!
    πŸ’—Amanda from IowaπŸ’—

  27. Michelle Mazinski says:

    Haha πŸ˜‚ you made me laugh with the shirt mullet…a front tuck will forever from this day forward be known as a shirt mullet to me πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ thanks for that…love love. You are so right about the front tuck…looks so much more fashionable and stylish and also shows off a belt a bit if you are wearing one. Thanks Erin for being you…you slwYs find a way to bring a smile to my face…you do you❀️

  28. Jennifer says:

    Would you be willing to do this tutorial in an IG story? Then save that baby!!
    I feel like I am somehow not quite getting this down…

  29. As I was front tucking yesterday, I remember HATING when people did that back when I was 21 and pre-three beautiful tiny humans who took over my body and life! Haha! Now I feel bad for judging (in my mind) those front tuckers, haha! But yours actually looks like those shirts that flow like that (short in the front and longer in the back) not as much as a front tuck, ahha! Is this me justifying our front tucks, haha! #lifeinour30s

  30. Rebecca Johnson says:

    Love this! I am 55 and have that menopausal apron but want to have a little more shape. Is there a way to tuck a shirt more to the side with the shirt lower in the front? Ideas welcome! lol

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