It’s not every day that Cardi B (or any celebrity, for that matter) is left with no other choice but to utilize a TikTok hack in order to avoid a wardrobe malfunction. But when the 30-year-old musician was on a plane without the assistance of stylist Kollin Carter, she resorted to the latest viral trend. Cardi’s makeup artist and former publicist Patientce Foster acted as her glam squad mid-flight, cinching in her metallic spaghetti-strap dress by wrapping a hair tie around a disc at the back to eliminate some of the excess fabric.
Most TikTok users demonstrate the hack by turning their dresses inside out. Next, they take any circular object, from a bangle to an oversize hoop earring, and place it right where they want the material to become more formfitting. Double-twisting a hair tie around the item gathers the fabric at that exact spot, and once the dress is repositioned properly on the body, there’s a resulting ruched effect in the area. However, it actually makes for a pretty clean detail, and it definitely looks better than a makeshift job done with a needle and thread. Of course, the bonus is that it only takes about 30 seconds to pull off when you’re in a pinch.
Upon reading Cardi’s caption before I pressed play on her X video — “would you try this??? Teamwork make the dream work!!!” — I have to admit, I was skeptical. Maybe it’s because I find emulating TikTok hacks (at least to the same level of visual perfection) to be challenging. The only trick that’s ever worked for me was buttoning my jeans through a belt loop to tighten the waist, and I’ve gained some weight since then, so achieving the off-kilter, deconstructed denim look is no longer necessary, and certainly not possible — at least with that pair.
But the dress-cinching hack actually feels doable and has me wondering how I can manipulate some of my pieces to achieve a different style entirely, even if the design I’m working with already fits. As one user shows below, you can also employ this trick at the front, on either side, or to raise the hemline of your long maxi and perhaps give way to a shoe moment. For example, I could easily bring my Carrie Bradshaw Norma Kamali dress to knee-length height, especially since it’s already got shirred sides. You could probably also maneuver it at the bust, just to alter the shape of the neckline. While this TikTok hack obviously appears different depending on the dress, it’s safe to say it helped Cardi achieve her signature curve-enhancing aesthetic. She opted for voluminous curls and side-swept bangs to finish off the look.
Ahead, see the viral TikTok dress hack in action, and decide how you might work it into your own wardrobe repertoire.