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How to Shop for a Corset and Achieve Perfect Waist

Madonna in Jean Paul Gaultier's famous Corset

Madonna in Jean Paul Gaultier's famous Corset

Few words about corsets

The word “Corset” comes from the French language, from the word " Cors” which means "diminutive body”, but the truth is that it actually belongs to the Latin; the word is “corpus”. For centuries, the corset was one of the most essential accessories in clothing. In ancient times it was worn by both women and men. It is a basic sartorial piece of clothes accepted by Fetish lovers. In order to become both underwear and outwear, the history of this specific exquisite fashion item, had faced rejections and acceptance according to the fashion trends of the time. During the late 19th century, the corset itself was one of the most elegant, expensive and desirable items for women. Yet around 1910 fashion designers began to reject it.

Paul Poiret, a well-known fashion designer started creating clothes that were highlighting more natural body shape. Of course, the corset did not disappear overnight. It's just at that time, fashion took another different road and corsets began slowly to disappear.

Historical developments played their role as well. The First World War brought social changes and managed to intensify the sartorial turn. In 1930, corset comes back into the heart of the fashion with different design since the trend of that time defined intricate cuts and more vibrant colours. In 1947, ‘New Look’ famous collection was launched by well-known designer Christian Dior, who creates the famous wasp-waisted corsets in new different ways that gave his models very curvaceous forms. Slowly, the corset is transformed into a corsage and becomes a necessary supplement of the evening dresses with an extremely thin waist. Corsages and corsets are still being used as the main part of evening gowns and especially of wedding dresses. Corsets now also are being sold separately. They come in many colours and shapes. Probably the most feminine is the one made of lace.

Types and Fabrics

There are many different types of corset that we can find in the fashion industry.

Fabrics that are being used:

  • Corset Coutil,
  • Silk Doupioni
  • Silk Brocades
  • Lining Fabrics
  • Stretch Fabrics

When shopping for a corset you need to think what exactly you want it for. If you want a corset to slim your waist and to highlight your curves than you can shop for an under-bust corset. Such corsets are worn under the bust, either under the clothing or above it. They help to show the beauty of a woman body by making the waist look slimmer, without suppressing the breasts as many corsets do.

Yet another type of corset is the one that is worn on the bust, called overbust corset. It covers the breast area completely and usually it is worn with no other clothes under or above it. Such corsets are most desirable by women because they can be worn even with the simple pair of jeans.

When shopping for corsets we need to consider that every corset is not suitable for every body shape. Bellow, you can find a guide to help you choose the correct corset for yourself.

Choosing Correct Corset for your Body Shape

  • Average Build

Body Shape: Medium to large size breasts and a smaller waist.
Best choices for you: You are lucky since you can wear any type and shape of the corset. By choosing any waist cincher corset you can have the hourglass silhouette.

How to wear it: Don't hesitate to show off your curves. And by wearing a corset you will definitely achieve that. You just have to decide what your style is going to be. A corset can look awesome with a pair of jeans and at the same time, it can look extremely chic with a long silk skirt.

  • Tall and thin

Body Shape: Thin long legs, medium size breasts and no curves.

Best Choices for you: You should try the long busk styles or any other longer waist cincher.

How to wear it: In order to cover all your chest, you should wear at least a 25cm or 35 would look even better. A satin or a leather corset is up to you and the occasion of course. The Victorian-style waist cincher will make your breasts look bigger. You can wear it with a skirt in order to show off your long and thin legs too.

  • Short and Petite

Body Shape: Small size breasts, with a thin waist and subtle curves.

Best Choices for you: The shorter busk styles are ideal for you. Probably 25cm over a bust corset or any Tallinne Waist Cincher Corset.

How to wear it: This type of corset is suitable for you as it will look great and help to accent your bust-line. Also, the 25cm Tallinne Waist Cincher will help to get instant hourglass silhouette.

  • Full-Figured Short

Description: Large breasted and short-waist figure

Ideal Choices: 35cm overbust corsets. Victorian or Tallinne waist corsets are a great choice to accentuate your curves.

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  • Full Figured Tall

Description: Tall and full figured with visible curves. Large breasts.

Corset Choices: The Longer busk styles 40cm overbust corset.

Suggestions: Victorian or Sweetheart neckline type corsets. Best fabrics are silk and leather.

  • Pear Shaped Short

Description: Short with a heavy bottom. The lower part of the body is larger than the upper.

Ideal Choices: Victorian cut over bust Corset is a great choice for you

Suggestions: Victorian velvet corset with a skirt would look great on you.

  • Pear Shaped Tall

Description: You are tall with a heavy bottom

Ideal Corset Choices: Victorian long style corset 40cm.

Suggestions: Satin or leather is the perfect choice


This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2013 SAM ELDER


Escobana from Valencia on July 20, 2013:

I So loved this hub! I'm all for the feminine shape of women I am definitely going to consider wearing a corset on jeans

With my Latina curves I know which one to choose now :-)

Great hub!

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