Note: we use anatomical terms in this blog.
“Tucking” refers to practices that flatten and smooth the groin (usually under clothing) so that the visible contour does not resemble a penis and/or testicles. Tucking can be a great way to explore your gender expression and euphoria sources. It can help tailored clothes fit better, help you visualize changes to your body, and can be a safety tool.
There are three main ways to tuck:
- Insertion – testicles can be inserted into the inguinal canals and the penis can be placed along the thigh crease or flat against the body. Insertion is often used in combination with clothing or tape.
- Clothing – usually tight underwear or shapewear, or clothing specifically designed for tucking (gaffs.) Some people use dance belts.
- Tape – tape is used to position and shape the body.
You may need to experiment with different methods to find the ways that work best for you. Tucking is generally safe with a few important caveats:
- Tucking may be uncomfortable, but it should not be painful.
- Sensitive skin may be irritated by clothing, creases, or adhesives.
- If taping, you may not be able to urinate without undoing your tuck (although you may be able to reposition your tape after urinating.) Going long periods of time without urinating, or restricting your liquids so that you do not have to urinate can raise your risk of urinary tract infections and dehydration.
We usually recommend using a gaff or tucking underwear for everyday tucking, but if you want a really smooth silhouette for a special occasion a combination of taping and a gaff might be your best option. Taping tuck kits made by a trans woman for trans folx can be found at Unclockable.
Here are our favorite tucking handouts from Callen-Lorde and Fenway Health. Fenway’s guide contains links to online stores and resources:
Unclockable has an unboxing video and illustrated guide to tucking.
TransTape also has a video and visual guide to tucking with tape that may be easier to follow than some of the illustrated guides. The illustrated guide is on their tucking page and in their manual. Note: their manual covers many different ways to use tape. Tucking information starts on the 12th slide.
- Gender Expression Resources page
- Express Yourself: Tips and Tools for Gettin’ Curvy Without a Prescription
- Gettin’ Curvy: Workouts for Flexibility, Strength, and Booty
Programs That We Know About For Free Or Low Cost Tucking Tools and Gender Wear:
- Point of Pride Free Shapewear Program
- TransFamily Support Services Gender Junk Program
- Origami Customs Community Program (mainly partner with Point of Pride)
- Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition
- Transitional Space Trans Care Packages
- Stay Gold Garments
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