Corsets and Weight Loss? Is There Really a Connection
Until recently, corsets seemed to be a thing of the past. The word “corset” would bring to mind actresses in elaborate, period-accurate costumes, not an integral part of a modern, stylish wardrobe. But then, suddenly, everyone from fitness trainers to fashion bloggers to celebrities such as Kim Kardashian and Jessica Alba started talking about corsets – specifically, talking about how corsets became an important part of their successful weight loss journeys. The question is, of course, is it true? Is there really a connection between wearing a corset and shedding off those pesky pounds?
ABSOLUTELY! (Or would that be….Ab-solutely?)Don’t get us wrong. A corset is not a magic, immediate-results-guaranteed solution for weight loss – but, then again, nothing is. However, regular wearing of a corset over a period of several weeks to several months, paired with a healthy diet and frequent exercise focused on the core and abdominal muscles, can lead to not only weight loss, but a smaller waist. Yes, that’s right – corsets aren’t just about the pounds, but they can also help you finally achieve that ideal hourglass figure you’ve always wanted!
So Just What Is a Corset, Exactly?
A corset is a tight-fitting undergarment which typically covers the area from just below the breasts to the just at the hips. The typical corset is made of cotton or another sturdy fabric and contains regularly spaced, vertical bones made from rigid metal, usually steel. Most corsets are kept closed by laces of ribbon or thick cotton string, wound through a series of grommets or eyes. Both corsets which lace up in the front of the body and those featuring laces in the back are extremely popular.
Corsets first saw use in Italy and France in the 1600s, and from there spread quickly to the rest of the world. In previous centuries, corsets were an integral part of any society woman’s wardrobe, and women who could afford them wore them as often as possible. During this period, some “extra-strength, extra-slimming” corsets were even made – instead of steel bones, these used whale bones!
Corsets and the Hourglass Figure
How Do Corsets Contribute to Weight Loss?
An hourglass figure focuses on emphasizing the chest and hip / buttock area while keeping the waist as narrow as possible. Its name, of course, derives from the shape of the once widely used timekeeping device, the hourglass. Throughout history, it has been considered an ideal figure for women, as it pairs a slender waist (symbolizing fitness and self control) with wider, more prominent hips (emphasizing suitability for childbearing).
A properly fitted corset can help anyone – women, men, and all others! – achieve an hourglass figure with regular wear. The corset compresses the waist while relocating any fat towards the chest, bosom and hips. Even first time or irregular corset wearers report a decrease in waist circumference of approximately 2 to 3 inches. Regular, steady wear can shrink your waist up to a practically unbelievable 8 inches in total! So whether it’s the first step towards a long-term weight loss goal or just to help that perfect dress fit just right for a night out, give corsets a try!
However, an hourglass figure is not the only benefit which corsets can provide. Wearing a corset regularly for several weeks or month can help you lose a significant amount of weight. However, it’s not an instantaneous loss – you’ve got to help it along!
But wait, then, you say. If a corset doesn’t just simply burn away fat, then how exactly can it help somebody lose weight? Well, in fact, it does this in more than just one way!
First, the compression of the waist causes someone wearing a corset to be less hungry, and practically eliminating the risk of overeating. Those who tend to “eat emotionally” or turn to food in times of stress can find that a corset helps them to practice portion control, as it encourages to eat a small amount of food a few times per day rather than one single large meal. (However, a corset can’t help you choose a salad over a slice of chocolate cake – this is where your willpower and determination plays a role too!)
In addition, the corset encourages proper posture, as it is difficult to slouch and the garment is far more comfortable when you are standing up straight. This posture in turn keeps the core and abdominal muscles engaged, meaning that these muscles are working harder even as you go about your daily routine. During a workout, this effect increases exponentially, as the muscles are pushed to work at their maximum potential. You can help this facet of weight loss along by working out frequently and focusing on exercises which target the core and abdomen. (See our article here for some example exercises which can be done without even leaving your home!)
If those two amazing advantages weren’t enough, corsets come with another amazing benefit – sweat. Gross, you might say, or How is sweat a benefit? you might ask. Simple – sweat promoted the loss of temporary water weight and decreases the risk of or effects caused by bloating throughout the day. Sweating also keeps your body working even post-workout as the body burns off unnecessary materials. Corsets, which are typically made of thick, insulating material, such as cotton, promote regular sweating even after your workout has finished for the day.
Important Corset Safety Reminders
Sounds great, doesn’t it? You’re ready and raring to buy one of our corsets and take the first steps on the path towards a new you, aren’t you? However, keep in mind that all those amazing benefits above come with a properly fitted corset which is properly broken in over a period of time.
See our article here to learn more about measuring yourself to assure that you are purchasing a corset in the proper size. If necessary, see a professional to have yourself measured – many undergarment stores, especially those which cater to women, carry measuring tools and will assist you in using them for no additional charge. A properly fitting corset should be tight and stay in place without slipping but not cut off your ability to breathe or make you feel dizzy or nauseous. If you feel that your corset is too tight or too lose, try re-stringing the laces (see our guide here) to achieve that perfect fit.
Do not begin wearing your corset all day as soon as it arrives. We know – you’re so excited to get started. However, like with anything new, your body needs to get used to wearing the corset. Wear it a few hours per day for the first week, then gradually increase by 1-2 hours each week until you can comfortably wear it for an entire day without experiencing discomfort or any other negative side effects.
A recommended program for breaking in your corset, especially if it is your first time wearing one, is to begin with 3 hours per day the first week, before increasing to 5 hours per day in the second week, 7 in the third, and transitioning to a full day during the fourth week. Taking a day off during the first and second week is sometimes also recommended for first-time wearers. If you wish to wear your corset while sleeping, this should be the last step, included in your routine only after you are able to comfortably wear it for a full day. (See here for more information about wearing corsets while sleeping.)
If you are recovering from an injury, suffer from chronic pain or other health conditions, or are pregnant or have recently given birth, we recommend that you consult a physician before beginning to regularly wear a corset. Young children whose muscles and organs are still developing should not wear corsets for any extended period of time, as it may inhibit the acquisition of vital abdominal strength.
If you have any other questions, feel free to contact us at any time! If you’re ready to dive right in to the wide, wonderful world of concerts, go to this page to visit our mind-blowingly large and varied collection!