Layering Tank Tops

By | June 9, 2011
trend that needs to come back
Let’s talk about layering. Layering with tank tops, ok?
I don’t follow fashion rules too well. I’m kind of a bender of fashion rules. Comfort, affordability, and comfort rule in my book. However, I don’t like to loll around in sweats all the time. They have a time and a place, of course, but not every day.
 I live in a close-knit community on campus. Us moms see each other every day. We don’t get dolled up for playdates or girls nights. Nope. We just meet at the swings. Come just as you are. Some days we sport spit-up and lint, other days we might have new jeans. Most days we’re just wearing what all moms wear when their home with their kids all day long: cheap, comfortable, practical clothes.

I am not by any means a fashion expert, and I don’t think I look “cute” everyday. But I will say I’ve had some of the moms ask me how I manage to look put together in tee shirts. First off, I have a rule that I must have at least mascara on, otherwise I am known to look like a lizard.

Second, and most important, is that I don’t just wear a baggy tee shirt that I got from a school function or inherited from my husband. Those I reserve for bed. Gotta have something special, right?

I am a thrift store groupie, and so I hunt for old, soft, wonderful teeshirts that have been broken in, loved, and discarded because they say things like “1981 Wilburs Family Reunion.” Thank you, Wilburs, for your reunion. I dig the shirt!

Besides the awesome comfort of an old teeshirt, I have another rule, or actually, more like a law:

Thou shalt always wear an undershirt.

I ALWAYS wear an undershirt. Perhaps I’ve developed a strange disorder, but if I’m not wearing at least two shirts I feel at a loss. Here’s why:

1.) Even if they’re just a regular cotton undershirt they help smooth everything down.

2.) They keep the cleavage down and butt crack in.

3.) They add a pop of color to a plain shirt.

4.) They are slimming because they elongate the whole torso.

5.) They’re just awesome.

Now…ahem. The embarrassing but totally necessary photos that I hope (maybe) prove my point. Starting with my favorite 1981 shirt that I wear every other day.

Layering Tank Tops
Without the undershirt. This shirt is actually pretty dang awesome anyways.
Layering Tank Tops
With a snazzy undershirt (curtesy of my dear friend Em).

Now, the short black sweatshirt that was made for people with 2 inch torsos.

Layering Tank Tops
Down with short waists! Boo!

Layering Tank Tops
Ok…didn’t realize I matched my curtains. Also didn’t know how cheesy I look when I do that face.

Finally, a wife-beater, worn by a non-beaten wife.
Layering Tank Tops
No one beats me, yo!


Layering Tank Tops
Lacy lacy
Now, of course I looked sad in the before pictures. I’ve noticed that people always do that in the befores and I wanted to impress upon you the wowness of the afters. My afters are so astounding because of my brilliant smiles, huh? (Actually, between you and me, I think the yellow curtains behind me are cranking out the yellow undertones in my teeth. Confoundit! Crest, you win again.) Nah. I dont know. You may all look at this and think I’m a huge nerd executing horrible fashion advice. But it’s working for me right now, and I thought ya’lld like to know how I manage to look like a superstar every day. Right? ????

**This post was written in response to Mama Kat’s weekly writing prompt. Head over there for some awesome writing! P.S. She has a picture where she’s layering the undershirt, so clearly I am not insane ????

34 thoughts on “Layering Tank Tops

  1. Anne

    I’m digging the undershirt look -a great way to use t-shirts that are too short, although two layers in LA and Las Vegas might get hot in summer months. Love your before and afters. You are a diva! (:

  2. How To Wear A Crop Top

    […] thing I felt was betrayal. I thought people read my blog. Didn’t I outline quite clearly how to look like a diva? […]


    I’m an undershirt fan too–I love the smoothing effect. Great post! And love the pictures–they really help illustrate the point.

  4. hilljean

    I enjoyed reading it. You look fantastic and btw, I take any before pics sad too ????

  5. Meg Issacs

    lol…your blog is flippin awesome! I found you via the blog hop and am glad I did! It would be great for a follow back! Have a great day,

  6. Jennie

    Love this! I was lol. And I am so with you on the thrift store, worn in tees. I have a Ridgecreek class of ’89 tee (don’t know where in the world Ridgecreek is) I wear all the time.


    Wow! I love this post. Your undershirts definitely make a big statement and help pull your outfits together. I love the look. I’m going to have to start layering more. Great advice!

  8. lindsayfield

    EXCELLENT rules to follow. I, too, am an undershirt girl. I love them. ????
    Mostly because girls with bootay (like moi) have a hard time with low-rise jeans and crack. It’s not pretty. The undershirt solves the problem, therefore… undershirts are a must! ????
    Stopping by from Mama Kats

  9. The Jammie Girl

    I’m so glad to hear I’m not the only one who gets a kick out of wearing Ts advertising someone else’s stores / schools / family reunions, or whatever. I especially like stuff from another part of the country – makes me look well-traveled ????

  10. Mama Kat

    I wear tank tops beneath EVERY top I own. The longer the better. ???? Great advice!

  11. Amy

    I used to wear a thrifted softball team t-shirt and pretend I played for the “Giants” over the summer. Suuure. I felt like it made me seem more interesting.

  12. Moms

    Ha, your undershirts do change the outfit. Great job of looking sad and then happy. Lol The photographers must tell the people that.

  13. JDaniel4's Mom

    I discovered the joy of layering shirts. It really helps my shirts from creeping up.

  14. Caitlin {Pacifier In My Pocket}

    Love this! Very funny and the “before and afters” are great!

  15. hilljean

    Ok, this is like forever late…I just got this new comment forum a while ago. I am ashamed to say that I do not understand twitter. at. all. Thanks for coming by!

  16. mommyslounge

    Awesome post. I ALWAYS wear an undershirt. But I think might just go shopping for some more after reading this. Hehehe. Thanks for the motivation!

  17. Lindsey

    You look cute! newest follower from

  18. hilljean

    Thanks Meg! sorry it took so long to get back to you…I don’t think I had this new comment forum up when I posted this. Now it’s so much easier to reply! I totally just became a follower ???? Thanks again for coming by! Visit anytime!

  19. CandaceHayes

    OH hillary i love you! I was laughing through the whole thing. Undershirts are amazing. Your tee-shirts I believe you can only pull off…I can’t. Or I just still have my VBS high school that are big baggy not flattering. I guess I need to find a thrift store. And your teeth will always be whiter than mine…always has been always will. LOVE YOU! See you in 24ish hrs! YAY!

  20. Anne

    You sure do rock the tees! And you did match your curtains.. how fashionable of you! LOL I love that undershirt look but is it itchy.. I can’t do itchy, bunchy, scrunchy.. must be smooth!

  21. vinobaby

    Love it! I am a thrift store shopaholic as well (I wrote a great post about it once). And I refuse to wear the old baggy t-shirts when it really is easy to look put together. It doesn’t cost much money or take much effort, and if you bought it a thrift store it doesn’t matter if it gets puked on or dirty at the playgrounds. I actually have moms who get mad at me for caring what I look like–hello–the whole outfit cost a whopping $4. Plus it’s just fun.

  22. Mommy's Paradise

    That’s a very good idea with the undershirt when your actual shirt is to short. But what do I do? I’m living in the tropics and two shirts are way to hot. Sigh. Visiting from LB Social Tea Party.

  23. Paige Kellerman

    Oh, I am all about the undershirts. If it doesn’t work with a fat-sucking tank top underneath, I’m not interested.

  24. ej

    born in washington state and learned how to layer at a very young age. currently live in las vegas, NV and I STILL layer. ex: 105 degrees yesterday and I had surgery, and husband questioned my tank top under my other tank top. one, pop of color, two, goodies aren’t hanging out. so now I am a new follower! anyone who doubles up, I will follow.

  25. lyndylou

    Popped in from Lady Bloggers tea party. Cool post and the under shirts really do make a difference ????

  26. Ellen Wonton

    Love your post. I totally dig the two shirt combo! Simple. Beautiful. Easy. Will be following your blog for sure!

  27. hilljean

    Haha! Keep dropping that hint and you could be the next one Stacey and Clinton catch! I usually find them in cheapy little fashion shops. I’ve noticed that they run for like $5 max! I mean, they wear out quicker than your Gap teeshirt might, but I just keep buying ’em and they never fail me!

  28. hilljean

    Sorry, I’m a little behind with my blog reading, but, YOU LOOK AMAZING! You are so right about the undershirts…so where do you get these? I’m trying to look more put together lately, but I think the people of What Not To Wear may come and capture me any day ????

  29. snowwhite2056

    I’m going to have to try this two shirt thing. Actually, I used to wear two shirts all the time and then came MENOPAUSE! I’m lucky most days to keep one on. Dropping by from the Tea Party. Thanks for your comments on my blog! Drop by anytime!


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