Man wearing shirt stays to keep shirt neatly tucked.

Shirt stays - My Experiences of a Niche item in a Sartorialist's Arsenal

Is your current business/dressed-up look looking tired and sloppy? Are you tired of your button-up shirt constantly rising and puffing around the waist? Have you ever wanted to take your look to the next level?

Then look no further than shirt stays - a relatively unknown piece of man wear that has its origin in the military. They come in various length and forms, but they ultimately have the sole purpose of keeping your shirt tucked in neat and preventing it from ballooning/puffing out all day.

I was introduced to shirt stays by chance (and very glad that I did) when I was looking for solutions for shirts that just won't stay down. Also saw them mentioned fleetingly in MFA. The 'military tuck' and those sticky knobs did not do very well under duress. I took the plunge and bought some stays and would like to share with you the shirt stay experience.

For those who don't know what shirt stays are, they are essentially suspenders (kinda look like them too) that are attached to the bottom hem of your shirt to the top hem of your socks - they look and can be worn like this.

This is our review.

Does it fulfill its purpose sufficiently? 5/5

The shirt stay belt does the job superbly. I look a lot neater (and more confident) without a suit jacket and it accentuates the silhouette of my tailored suit by keeping everything taut and lithe. The shirt stay belt does a great job holding them in place - despite a great deal of stress I place on them by extending my arm to reach something high or sitting down and bending over the table to eat.

Design, setting up and ease of use? 3.5/5

Being unfamiliar with how taut or how much slack you should give these things consume a bit of time to set up, and get used to. I found that setting up your stays introduce about 10 minutes more to your dressing time. If I wake up late/sleep in, I skip the stays... and feel worse for it. I find myself adjusting the slack no matter how much I adjusted it the previous wear. This could be remedied if you label your stays for a certain leg and position... but that's a bit too much.

When standing up, the stays should should have a bit of tension, but slack in the stays should not be too far away - these things over the course of the day can influence your posture if they are too tense. Worse still, they may fling off the hems - ripping out leg hair and slapping the family jewels on the way out. Thankfully, I have not had these happen yet but if it happens, you have to take off your pants and shoes to re-attach the clips. Seriously annoying - so not too tense guys. Conversely, if it's too loose, they don't do the job.

I clip the stays onto my shirts (two on the front and two on the back) before wearing it and set the other ends of the clip to my socks after buttoning up. My stays go/criss-cross front of shirt to back of sock and vice versa - from the inside of my thigh/knees (rather than the outer). It's a matter of preference whether you clip them front of shirt to front of sock, but I do the criss-cross method as it is more comfortable when sitting and more discrete (IMO).

The Sharp and Dapper's stay clip design is unlike your standard suspender, alligator-style clips. They use a "push and slide" style (to describe it as best I can, or you can look at the link to get the jist of it) where you push the fabric of the shirt through the loop with the peg flap and slide the peg up a thinner channel which holds the fabric in place. Whilst this a very secure style, it can be a bit fiddly to clip on (especially if you're doing it blind) and the stress your movement can inevitably bring to the clip heads can leave some heavily impressioned creases on your shirt and socks - will probably require a heat press or ironing - steaming won't cut it here.

Comfortability? 5/10

This is where the shirt stays receive most of their complaints, aside from durability.

Personally, I got used to the stays after a few minutes. The trouble happened when the pegs angled in a painful position and pressed into my skin - though this can be remedied by clipping the pegs in a less stressful angle or making sure there are no twists in the band. I don't suffer from this problem any longer.

The most annoying aspect of wearing stays, in my experience, were that the clips that adjusts the length were catching some of leg hair. Ouch. As you cannot adjust the clips without great trouble, you either have to bear the hair-pulling or push/pull the clip to rip the hairs and provide yourself temporary relief (until it catches onto some more victims). I would not be surprised to find four small bald spots on my legs in the near future.

Standing up, you can feel quite a bit of tension from the clips pulling your shirt down. Depending on your shirt fit, this tension can cause some posture problems by way of rounding/slouching your shoulders in forward direction. Sitting down, you are definitely reminded that you have the stays on - the back clips are constantly under load. Don't forget to stretch and pull your shoulders back and push your chest forward.

This is unfortunately a drawback of the stays doing their work, loosening your stays to relieve the tension when sitting will mean that your stays will be useless when standing (which is when you want it to shine).

If it weren't for the hair-catching, these would be very comfortable to wear. I didn't mind the postural challenges as I probably needed to have consciously worked on that aspect anyway.


Jury is still out there...

As I said at the beginning, I've only been wearing these for two weeks. Fabric pilling occurred on the bands after two wears. The elasticity has not seemed to have gone weaker - then again, it has only been a fortnight. But inevitably, you will have to replace these as is the nature of these material. Looking at the end clips close-up, the metal loop and base consist of separate parts, which worries me should I place any undue stress when wearing these over a period of time and when clipping the fabric into the loops.

The band is reinforced at the hems/edges. As anything though, everything is only as strong as its weakest link - and that is the metal loop/clip base at the ends, I try to be careful when attaching and securing the ends to my shirts and socks by pushing/pulling the whole of the clip instead of stressing one part of it.

With care and sensible tension, these things can last a while.

Visbility? Is it obvious during wear?

There has been no point when wearing this, inside and out, when people have questioned me or looked at my pants with the stays on. Unless your pants are super tight or if you are sitting down, people MIGHT see the slight raise from the banding or the adjustment clips, but people have to be looking really hard (and why are they looking there in the first place).

If you are a wearing thicker material than dress pants wool/cotton, like denim or thick cotton, this will be a non-issue.

Conclusion? Overall I give them 4/5.

I have always tolerated a bit of pain in the name of fashion and looking good. Shirt stays are no exception.

For some people, the level of uncomfortableness these stays can bring can put people off from wearing them after a few wears. For me, the benefits (and the nature of my work) heavily outweigh the cons.

If you have a nicely tailored suit, nice shoes, nice tie and shirt, your look - at this point - can be ruined by the little things - water stain in your silk tie, bits of fabric fraying in your suit jacket, blemish in the waxing of your Oxfords from knocking your other foot into the toe cap. Or a rising shirt from continually sitting down or stretching your arms - making your waistline and silhouette look more puffier than it really is. None of these things may be your fault, but you can help one of these from never being a problem again. Just a bit of time and a bit of niggle is all it takes to achieve the head-turning looks from a nice, taut shirt. My experience with wearing shirt stays have been very good so far - I can't go back to not wearing stays. I am considering wearing these outside of the business context, where my un-tailored button-up shirts are more prone to puffing at the waist.

I think I've covered everything - but if you have any questions regarding shirt stays, I will gladly answer from my experience and inferences from wearing them. Hoping to see some more gents in shirt stays!

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We understand how frustrating it can be to constantly adjust a shirt that just won’t stay tucked.

Founded in 2019. We’ve felt your struggle firsthand and turned our frustration into a mission: to help men look sharp and feel confident.

Our shirt stay belt is designed to keep your shirt tucked in, regardless of your body-type.



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To apply your TCKYOU shirt stay belt, just easily hook it up to the last button of your shirt. If you are wearing casual wear without buttons, just skip this step. 

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Easy in its execution, simply wrap the TCKYOU shirt stay belt around your waist and fasten it with the locking hook. 

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Adjust the size to fit accordingly. The TCKYOU shirt stay belt has one universal size and has a waist circumference of 47 inches (120 cm) with a max stretch of 59 inches (150 cm).

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TCKYOU's belt-style shirt stay is the easiest and most effective way to keep your shirt tucked in tight against your body. Comfortable & concealed worn, giving your body a more slim appearance.




Keeps shirts securely tucked in against the body: a neat and slim appearance by holding shirts firmly in place.


The belt hooks onto the last button of a shirt, wraps around the waist, and adjusts for a comfortable fit​.


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TCKYOU is a shirt stay belt that helps you get your professional look down in a breeze, guaranteeing you full days tuck.