There are 5 basic techniques of managing deviance. There is secrecy, manipulating the physical setting, rationalizations, change to non-d'eviance, and joining deviant subcultures. The act of secrecy is easily defined as the word itself. The deviant keeps secrets from those around them. The thought behind it being that if nobody ever knows about their deviant behavior there is no one who can place negative sanctions upon the deviant.

Next, manipulating the physical setting, the deviant chooses to avoid negative sanctions by appearing to be legitimate in their reasons for taking part in the act or situation. For example a prostitute may work under the guise of being an escort or masseuse. Another technique of managing deviance is rationalizations. An example of a rationalization would be a shoplifter who justifies their actions by saying that the store has insurance and can afford to suffer the loss. A fourth technique of managing deviance would be to make a change to non-deviance.

For example, criminals will refer to the technique as "going straight." The fifth and final technique of managing deviance is to join a deviant subculture. Joining the subculture makes the deviant feel like they are less deviant because they are surrounded by their deviance. Using the example of a married man who cross-dresses at the bars after he gets off work, there are several techniques that he might employ to manage his deviance. One technique that he might use would be secrecy; he would attempt to keep his "normal" life and his "cross-dressing" life separate. His wife may not even know about his alter-ego of sorts. Another technique he might employ would be joining a deviant subculture.

By assimilating with fellow cross-dressers at a bar he may feel that the act is less deviant, or even "normal." The third technique I would imagine the man would use would be manipulating the physical setting. By only cross-dressing when he is at the bar, away from his co-workers and family he aids in the secrecy of his deviance. He may say that the cross-dressing is just a gimmick or comical act and not admit to doing it for his pleasure. He might rationalize that it's ok to cross-dress because he is of a Scottish background and they wear kilts or that many men used to wear various skirts and dresses in earlier times. The final technique that he could use altogether would be to change to non-deviance, he could simply quit cross-dressing.

There are any number of techniques that can me used, all 5 may or may not be employed for any single act of deviance and there can be more than one reason behind each technique.