It’s been nearly three years since the Queer Eye reboot catapulted five “fab” professionals-at-being-gay into icon status, and culture has largely turned its eyes from a show once seen as progressive. Many young people seem to have had enough of Queer Eye’s brand of neoliberal, capitalist-friendly queerdom.
Jonathan Van Ness defended appearing in ads for Uber Eats following criticism of the company’s alleged employee mistreatment, while fellow host Karamo Brown angered fans by partnering with the historically anti-queer-friendly charity Salvation Army. On TikTok, Zoomers dunk on a cringe-y resurfaced video of the Fab Five judging politicians’ styles. “I am not about this — that hair, that suit — and quietly, not about them politics. Hillary all the way,” Brown says of Bernie Sanders, a favorite of Leftist TikTok.
In response, Zoomers on Leftist TikTok are calling for a revolution against the show’s sartorial staple, the French tuck. They’re suiting up for war against Netflix’s wholesome heroes.
The first order of business? Tucking in your sweater or sweatshirt.
Pushing your sweatshirt into your pants is the latest evolution in fashion’s nerd and skater revivals, which mainstreamed fully tucked-in T-shirts in the late 2010s and buoying Tan France’s front-only French tuck as a momentary stop on the cinched waist journey. Just because winter is coming doesn’t mean we can’t forget a clean waistline.
Of course, these aren’t exactly uncharted waters to explore. A tucked-in sweater is literally just a sweater… tucked in. But there’s a sense here that crisp lines at the waist look cleaner than a chunky sweater bulging out at the hip and contorting one’s frame.
The style is certainly forgiving for slender people, so some Tiktok style influencers showcase different methods to achieve the tucked-in look without actually shoving a sweater into one’s pants. One of the more popular tips is belting the loose sweater around your belly button, pulling the excess material over and covering the belt.
It’s clear that Zoomers tucking in their sweatshirts aren’t doing so solely because of crisp lines or wintertime coziness. Like any style, it’s sending a signal. And sweater weather — both the clothing trend and the song by the band the Neighbourhood — is now canonically known as a bisexual anthem, alongside cuffed jeans and rolled-up sleeves.
Cultural understanding of what queer representation looks like changed since the Fab Five took over Netflix less than a half-decade ago. While a tucked-in sweater is surely little more than a glimpse into the fashion tastes of some queer teens today, it’s perhaps a better idea of their influences than a French tuck (and some questionable spon-con).