Hawaiian Shirt: To Tuck or Not to Tuck?

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Many people wonder if it is okay to tuck in a Hawaiian shirt. Like everything else in fashion, you should wear whatever you wear according to your own style and taste. So if you want to tuck it in, tuck it in. And if you want to wear it untucked, go for it. Having said that, there are a few simple rules of thumb to help you decide whether to tuck or untuck.

Bottom Design Hawaiian shirts like the one pictured above are usually worn untucked so that the full design of the shirt is visible. 

If there is a shirt that you should generally wear untucked, it is the “bottom design” and “engineered” Hawaiian shirts. These shirts are sometimes called “picture shirts” because their design creates an image that spans most or all of the front of the shirt. And the design usually also extends down to the bottom of the shirt. If you tuck in a shirt like this, you will be covering up the bottom part of the design. This would be like covering up the bottom of a nice painting. Sure, you could do it. But why wear it if you’re going to just cover it up? So we suggest you wear these types of shirts untucked.

In an obviously casual situation it is perfectly appropriate to wear a Hawaiian shirt untucked. Keep in mind that if you wore your shirt tucked all day at the office, do not untucked it when you go out. It will be wrinkled and look sloppy.

Aside from that, deciding whether to wear a shirt tucked or untick is more a matter of circumstance. If you’re on vacation or in any overtly casual or fun situation, it’s perfectly fine to wear the shirt untucked. Most aloha shirts look good untucked so the shirt can move freely as you move and as the wind blows.

If you are in a professional environment like in an office, even if your office has Hawaiian Shirt Fridays, it might be safer to wear the shirt tucked just as you would any other button down shirt. When in doubt, we always recommend overdressing for a situation.

And of course there are the gray areas. Sometimes an untucked shirt might fall on you a certain way that looks better untucked than tucked. This could apply to both a formal situation like being at work or attending a luau wedding. So your specific circumstance will ultimately determine what you should do. But don’t stress about it too much. Rules are meant to be broken and fashion is all about your tastes. If you’re in a professional environment where everyone is more formally dressed, tucking or not tucking your Hawaiian shirt won’t matter. In this case, it’s probably best not to wear an Aloha shirt. But for almost every other circumstance, if a Hawaiian shirt is appropriate, it’s probably okay to wear it untucked. And in general, that’s how we recommend wearing it.

A couple attending a beachfront luau wedding in matching Hawaiian dress and shirt with the shirt untucked.

A couple attending a beachfront luau wedding in matching Hawaiian dress and shirt with the shirt untucked.

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