Former retail worker shares hack to make fake Christmas trees look more real

·Contributor, Yahoo Life UK
·4-min read
A former retail worker has shared her hack for making fake Christmas trees look more real. (Getty Images)
A former retail worker has shared her hack for making fake Christmas trees look more real. (Getty Images)

Real or fake? It’s the Christmas tree dilemma that divides the nation every festive season.

While fake trees can save you the cost and bother of having to buy a new one every year, compared to their fresh, bushy counterparts, they can sometimes look a little sparse.

But a former retail worker has revealed the secret to making artificial Christmas trees look bigger, fuller, and more, well, real.

Sharing her insider trick on TikTok, the woman named Taylor, who posts under the handle @lifehacks1989, demonstrated how to order the branches with two sticking out, and then one sticking up, to give a realistic effect.

“One thing I learned working in retail, put your Christmas tree branches two out, one up, two out, one up. ‘It’ll make your tree look bigger and fuller,” she explains in the clip.

In her demonstration video she starts at the centre of the tree, where the trunk is, and works outwards towards the ends of the branches.

She said she was always told to do it this way when arranging window displays at the store where she previously worked and shared that following this pattern helps to create the illusion of fullness.

Read more: Make your own wreath this festive season with this easy-to-use kit

Since the timely clip was shared it has clocked up over 65K likes and received hundreds of comments from people impressed by the simple tree arranging hack.

“Thank you! Doing mine on Tuesday and this is really helpful,” one person wrote.

“I just ‘wing’ it usually. My trees are all up already but now I know this I’ll try it Xmas 2021,” another commented.

Read more: You can get a Christmas tree delivered through your letterbox this festive season

Some viewers said they were considering re-doing the trees they’d already put up.

“You’re making me want to redo my tree. Never knew this. Thank you,” one wrote.

“I’m going to have to redo my tree,” another joked.

Watch: Pop up trees are this year’s big Christmas trend.

Some people also added their own tips to make a fake tree look more full.

One TikTok user wrote: “I always twist one branch around the metal part that hooks into the tree. Covers up the colour codes and makes it look fuller”.

“I have matte green tinsel I use to fill out the inside before putting the rest of the decorations on, it makes a huge difference,” another added.

Read more: People are putting up their Christmas decorations early and experts say it could boost wellbeing

There are plenty of tips to make artificial Christmas trees look more full. (Posed by model, Getty Images)
There are plenty of tips to make artificial Christmas trees look more full. (Posed by model, Getty Images)

When it comes to arranging the branches of your artificial tree, TV interior designer, Steph Briggs, suggests trying to imagine how a real tree would grow naturally.

“The branches would want to gain as much light as possible,” she explains.

“Take time over positioning and separating the branches, as that is what makes the difference between an ‘OK’ and a fabulous Christmas tree”.

If you find your tree is still looking a little sparse, Briggs suggests adding a garland or foliage to fill the gaps using florists wire to attach.

Interior stylist Amy Wilson has some other tips and tricks for making an artificial tree seem more real:

Light it up

The more twinkle you can get on your tree the better. “Bury those fairy lights deep into the trunk of the tree to create beautiful glow and make it seem fuller,” Wilson adds.

Add in real foliage

“Feeding in some real holly, ivy and pine cones will elevate your fake tree and make it appear more real,” Wilson explains.


Fake the smell of a real tree by spritzing your home with the smell of Christmas. Wilson suggest buying some Christmas tree home spray to make sure your home is filled with the natural, unmistakeable scent of a freshly cut tree.

Switch up the stand

Pop your artificial tree into a large plant pot rather than a stand to give the illusion of a pot-planted tree.

Go big on decorations

Wilson says with Christmas tree decorations, it’s a case of the more the merrier. “Using decorations of all different shapes and sizes will disguise those fake branches and make your tree look full and decadent,” she says.

Embrace the fake

“If artificial trees are your thing, then just go for it,” says Wilson. “Bold oversized decorations in bright colours will look perfect”.

Watch: Ice cream company aims to have impact on the 8 million Christmas trees cut in the UK

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