Corsets 101: A Beginner's Guide, Everything About Corsets

Written by: Laraib Javed



Time to read 9 min

Whether you're interested in wearing a corset for fashion or for waist training, it's important to know how to properly wear and care for one. This complete guide covers everything from the history of corsets to the different types available and how to choose the right one for you.

What is a Corset?

A corset is a tight-fitting garment that is designed to shape the body, typically worn to create an hourglass figure. It is constructed with a combination of boning and lacing, which allows for the garment to be tightened or loosened to the desired level of compression. 

The boning is typically made of steel or plastic and is used to provide structure and support to the Corset.

The corset is designed to cinch in the waistline, creating an exaggerated hourglass shape. It is typically worn underneath clothing, but can also be worn as an outer fashion with a combination of jeans, shorts, skirts, and as a part of the costume.

History of Corsets: Evolution of Corsets

History of Corsets: From Ancient Times to Modern Day

Over the years, the corset has undergone many changes and variations. The earliest corsets were designed to flatten the stomach and create a straight, upright posture. As the corset evolved, it became more structured and shaped the body into an exaggerated hourglass shape.

In the early 20th century, the corset lost popularity as new clothing styles prioritized comfort and freedom of movement.

Recently, it has made a comeback in mainstream fashion, with designers incorporating corset-inspired elements into their designs.

Corsets today come in a variety of styles, from traditional Victorian to modern and streamlined.

How many types of corsets are there?

In today’s modern world, there are many different types of corsets available in the market. Here are some most popular types of corsets that are in trend.

Types of Corsets: 18 types you need to know


Overbust Corsets:

Overbust corsets are designed to cover the entire chest area, providing support to the bust and creating an hourglass figure. They come in a variety of styles, including Victorian, Gothic, and Steampunk. Overbust corsets can be worn as outerwear or underwear, depending on the style and design.

Underbust Corsets:

Underbust corsets are designed to sit just below the bust, providing support to the midsection and creating a slimming effect. They are versatile and can be worn with a variety of clothing, including dresses, tops, and blouses.

Waist Cinchers:

Waist cinchers, also known as waist trainers, are designed to cinch the waist and provide a slimming effect. They are typically made of latex or other elastic material and are worn tightly around the waist.

Longline Corsets:

Longline corsets are designed to cover the entire torso, from the bust to the hips. They are typically longer than other corsets and provide additional support to the midsection.

Fashion Corsets:

Fashion corsets are designed for aesthetic purposes and are typically not designed to provide support or slimming effects. There is a variety of styles and designs available for them, ranging from minimalistic and sophisticated to intricate and decorative.

Bridal Corsets:

Bridal corsets are designed specifically for weddings and are often worn under wedding dresses. Bridal corsets are designed to provide support and enhance the bride's figure on her special day.

Training Corsets:

Training corsets, also known as waist trainers, are designed to be worn for extended periods to help train the waist to maintain an hourglass shape. They are typically made of steel boning and provide a firm, tight fit. Training corsets should only be worn under the guidance of a professional.

Each type of corset has its own unique features and benefits, and the choice of which type to wear depends on personal preference, the occasion, and the desired effect. Regardless of which type of corset you choose, it is important to wear it correctly and safely.

How to choose the right corsets?

One of the biggest challenges faced by women when buying corsets is choosing the right size. At the time of choosing the right size corset, take into consideration factors such as body type, measurements, and style.

Determine Your Body Type: Are you apple-shaped, pear-shaped, hourglass-shaped, or straight? Knowing your body type will help you choose a corset that flatters your figure and provides the desired effect. For instance, if you are apple-shaped, you may want to choose a corset that cinches your waist and provides support to your bust.

Take Accurate Measurements: It is essential to measure your waist, bust, and hips correctly, as these measurements will determine the size of the corset you need.

Choose the Right Style: Lace-up or Zipper Corsets

Once you've determined your size, you'll need to decide between a lace-up or zipper corset.

Lace-up corsets are the more traditional option, with laces running down the back and front for adjustment. They offer more control over the level of cinching and are generally considered more comfortable for longer periods of wear.

Zipper corsets, on the other hand, offer quick and easy on-and-off convenience. However, they may not offer the same level of control as a lace-up corset, and the zipper can sometimes become stuck or break with wear.

Consider Your Comfort Level: Comfort is crucial when choosing the right size of corset. You want to choose a corset that is not too tight or too loose. A tight corset can be painful and even cause breathing difficulties. It is important to try on different sizes and styles to find one that is comfortable and provides the desired effect.

How to Style a Corset?

As someone who loves wearing corsets, I've found that styling them properly can make a huge difference in how they look and feel. Here are some tips for pairing your corset with clothing and accessorizing to create a fabulous, put-together look.

Here are some ideas for pairing a corset with different types of clothing:

Corset with Pants or Jeans: Pairing a corset with pants or jeans can create a casual, edgy look. Choose a fitted pair of pants or skinny jeans to balance out the volume of the corset. You can also add a leather jacket for a rocker-chic vibe.

Corset with Skirts: A corset looks stunning when paired with a skirt. Try a high-waisted skirt with a shorter corset to create a flattering hourglass silhouette. For a more formal look, choose a long, flowy skirt to pair with a more intricate corset.

Corset with Dresses: A corset can add an extra layer of interest to a dress. You can choose a dress with a fitted bodice that complements the corset, or wear a corset over a flowy dress to create a unique, bohemian-inspired look.

Styling your corset can be fun and exciting, and it's a great way to show off your unique sense of style. By pairing your corset with the right clothing and accessories, you can create a look that is both flattering and eye-catching.

How to take care of a corset?

Now, let's dive into the tips and tricks for corset care. Follow these guidelines to ensure your corset lasts as long as possible.

Clean your corset regularly: Cleaning your corset regularly is essential for its longevity. We recommend spot-cleaning your corset after every wear using a damp cloth and mild soap. If your corset requires deeper cleaning, hand wash it using a gentle detergent and cold water. Don’t wash Leather corsets.

Air dry your corset: After washing your corset, hang it up to air dry. Avoid using a dryer, as this can shrink and damage the fabric. Hang your corset in a well-ventilated area, away from direct sunlight and heat sources.

Store your corset properly: Proper storage is crucial for maintaining your corset's shape and structure. We recommend hanging your corset on a padded hanger or folding it neatly and storing it in a drawer or box. Avoid hanging your corset by its laces, as this can stretch and damage them.

Wear your corset with care: When wearing your corset, be mindful of how you move and sit. Avoid slouching or bending at the waist, as this can put unnecessary strain on the corset. Additionally, avoid wearing your corset too tightly or for extended periods, as this can cause discomfort and damage.

4 most common myths about wearing corsets.


Here are some of the most common myths about wearing corsets. If you're interested in trying out a corset for yourself, I would highly recommend it. Just make sure to do your research and invest in a well-made corset that fits you properly.

Myth #1: Corsets are uncomfortable:

This is perhaps the most pervasive myth about corsets, and it couldn't be further from the truth. Of course, there are poorly-made corsets out there that can be uncomfortable to wear, but a well-fitted corset should be quite comfortable.

Myth #2: Corsets are only for formal occasions:

While it's true that corsets are often associated with formal wear, they can be worn for many different occasions. In fact, many people wear corsets as part of their everyday wardrobe. Corsets can be paired with jeans and a t-shirt for a casual look, or dressed up with a skirt or dress for a more formal occasion.

Myth #3: Corsets are bad for your health:

This myth is perhaps the most harmful of all the myths about corsets. While it's true that poorly-made corsets can cause health problems, a well-fitted corset can actually be beneficial for your health. A corset can help improve your posture, which can in turn relieve back pain and other issues.

Are Corsets Bad for Your Health? - Experts Advice

Myth #4: Corsets are only for women:

While it's true that corsets are often associated with women's fashion, they can be worn by anyone. Men, non-binary individuals, and gender non-conforming individuals can all wear corsets if they so choose.

Corsets for Men History, Modern Styles, and Choosing the right corset


Final Words: Everything about Corsets

Corsets can have a positive impact on both your physical appearance and your self-confidence. As a beginner, it's important to start slowly and gradually increase the amount of time you wear your corset.

By incorporating a corset into your wardrobe, you can create a more defined silhouette, improve your posture, and even alleviate back pain. With proper use and care, a corset can be a valuable addition to your fashion arsenal. Don't be afraid to try one out and experience the benefits for yourself!

FAQs: Corsets 101: Beginner's Guide about Corsets

Are corsets uncomfortable?

Comfort levels can vary depending on the individual and the style of the corset worn. It's important to choose a well-fitting corset made from quality materials.

 How long can I wear a corset?

It's generally recommended to gradually increase the amount of time you wear a corset, starting with a few hours a day and gradually working up to 8-12 hours.

How do I properly clean my corset?

It's best to follow the manufacturer's instructions for cleaning your corset. Generally, hand washing with mild detergent and air drying is recommended.

Can corsets be worn for everyday use?

Yes, corsets can be worn for everyday use, but it's important to choose a style and fit that allows for comfortable movement and breathing.

How do I know if my corset fits correctly?

A well-fitting corset should feel snug but not overly tight and should allow for comfortable breathing and movement. It should also provide the desired shaping effect.

Are corsets only for certain body types?

Corsets can be worn by people of various body types, but it's important to choose a style and fit that works for your individual body shape.

Can I wear a corset for waist training?

Yes, corsets can be worn for waist training, but it's important to choose a high-quality corset made specifically for this purpose and to follow a safe and gradual training regimen.

Can I wear a corset if I'm pregnant?

It's generally not recommended to wear a corset during pregnancy, as it can restrict breathing and movement and may not provide the necessary support for the changing body.

Can I exercise in a corset?

It's not recommended to exercise in a corset, as it can restrict breathing and movement and may not provide the necessary support for physical activity.

How do I choose the right size corset?

It's important to measure your waist and choose a corset size that corresponds with your measurements. It's also recommended to try on multiple sizes and styles to find the best fit.

How do I know if a corset is too tight?

A corset that is too tight will restrict breathing and movement and may cause discomfort or pain. It's important to choose a corset that allows for comfortable breathing and movement.

Can men wear corsets?

Yes, men can wear corsets, and there are styles made specifically for male body shapes.

Leave a comment