Waist Training

Courtesy of GlamourBoutique

Waist training is a gradual process of waist reduction using a steel boned corset. Also known as waist cinching or tight-lacing the practice came to prominence in Victorian times but has made something of a comeback in recent years. Wearing a tight-lacing corset, exercise and eating a healthy diet can radically reduce the waist of men and women. Furthermore, the wearing of a corset whilst undertaking a healthy diet helps reduce food volume intake by constricting the internal organs thus helping promote the healthier practice of smaller meals, more often, rather than three large meals a day.

Tight-lacing as a means of permanent waist-reduction and re-shaping is a practice requiring discipline and is best achieved when the following 3 components work in harmony:

Results will be slower and harder to obtain if the 3 major components are not practiced as a gradual programme of modifying the shape of the body. So, what are the steps to follow for correct waist-training?

STARTING OUT: We advise all novices beginning their waist training, female and male, to choose an under bust corset rather than a full corset that covers the bust. A person’s body must become accustomed to the constriction of tight-lacing and we promote pleasurable wearing of corsets. If you try to do too much too soon or jump to a full corset you may find your initial experience an uncomfortable one.

Begin with a corset that is 4 to 5 inches smaller than your actual waist measurement. To measure your waist, look in a mirror and measure the narrowest part of the waist; with females this is usually just above the navel by an inch or two and for males it is usually just at the bottom of the navel. If your actual waist measurement is 34” for example, then you order a 30” corset. Over time and once the corset is gradually broken-in you will be able to close the corset so that you are obtaining a full 4 inch cinch/reduction. Corset stores like GlamourBoutique already do the computation for you in their size selector i.e. it will say something like: ’30 inch corset for an existing 34” waist’.

A new corset must be broken in otherwise you can damage the garment. The first few weeks of wearing the corset you must not over-cinch. Tighten the garment evenly until it is ‘snug’ but not tight. Corset panels are stiff when new and along with the flexible steel bones, must be allowed to mould themselves and change shape according to where your ribs and hips are. This takes time and if you rush the process you will either hurt yourself or ‘pop’ a steel bone or panel seam. Once the garment is worn-in you can then begin to tighten a little more each time you wear the corset until you have reached your comfort level. This may take months and at that point you should be wearing the corset fully closed so that you have achieved a full 4” cinch. Now you can progress to the next size down corset as part of your continued waist-reduction regime. Bear in mind that individuals body shape’s are different and you may not be able to fully close the corset. Bone cannot be cinched and you should not attempt such a feat – again the result will be a damaged corset. Everything should be done gradually and in moderation.

To begin with, try to wear the corset 3 to 6 hours a day where possible. We do not advise sleeping in a steel boned corset but at all other times of the day (apart from obvious breaks for bathing etc) as long as it can practically be part of your routine then it is a good discipline.

MAINTENANCE: If you are serious about waist-training then it is very important to look after your corset; over time they take a lot of punishment from regular cinching but if you take some simple precautions you can extend the life of the garment:

  1. Always wear with a liner or tight camisole/t-shirt. Even the most genteel lady will perspire in a corset – wearing a liner will protect the corset lining from much of the moisture and body oils in particular
  2. Air Dry your corset at the end of the day. Corsets must be dried out by turning the lining to the upper side and hanging over the back of a chair. Never hang on or near a heat source as over time this will cause shrinkage and eventual damage to the stitching
  3. Alternate Corsets. Rather than buy one very fancy corset, purchase 2 moderately priced, strong corsets and alternate them so that each corset gets to ‘rest’ between each wearing
  4. Consider protecting the outside of the corset by spraying a protective coat of Scotch Guard
  5. Cleaning. From time to time you may need to wipe clean the outside or the liner with a damp cloth. If the corset needs a thorough cleaning then it must be done at a dry cleaners – ensure they have experience of cleaning such articles. NEVER wash your corset.

Follow these simple tips for maintenance, break the corset in gradually and you will have a corset that lasts a long-time; a little bit of care goes a long way where corsets are concerned.

CHOOSING A CORSET: Only a traditional steel-boned corset can obtain a cinch of 3 to 5 inches and such a garment must be well constructed using flexible steel-bones and wider steel busk plates at the front for the fasteners which take a good deal of the pressure from tight-lacing. Be sure that such a garment has full cord lacing at the rear and that there is a strong ‘exposed’ tape circling the lining of the corset for added strength. Laces should be guided through traditional steel grommets.

Materials for outer panels and inner lining will vary but we recommend corsets with 100% cotton lining so that the corset is breathable. Outer material may be of silk, leather, pvc and the most common, satin. Always bear in mind that lighter colors will dirty faster than plain black satin, for example. If you require a corset for tight-lacing i.e. to reduce your waist either in the short-term for the obvious esthetic effect or as part of a continued tight-lacing regime to alter your body-shape then do not consider corsets with ‘plastic boning’, or garments that have zippers or ribbon instead of strong traditional cord lacing. Such garments are made to look pretty but are not made for tight-lacing.

HAPPY CINCHING: So, whether you just want to reduce your waist in the short term or you intend to embark on a gradual waist-reduction regime then the only garment that can truly undertake the rigors and give you results from day one are traditional steel-boned corsets. Remember, for longer term permanent wasit-reduction a corset should be used in conjunction with healthy diet and moderate, regular exercise. Follow the simple guidelines and you will have a rewarding experience over time. If you have any questions about corsets or tight lacing then please call us and we’ll be glad to help you.