Corsets, reduced size and comfort of the corset

Corsets, reduced size and comfort of the corset

Corsets and waist reduction

Wearing a tight lace corset for long periods of time (a practice known as tight lace), men and women can learn to tolerate extreme constriction of their waist and reduce their natural waist circumference. The slightlacers usually target a size of 40 to 43 centimeters (16 to 17 inches). The Guinness Book of World Records records two cases of women reduced to a size of 15 inches: Ethel Granger and Cathie Jung. Other women, such as Polar, also claim to have made such cuts.

These are extreme cases. The corsets were and are generally designed to provide support, the freedom of movement of the body being an important factor in their design. Today's corset wearers usually tighten the corset just enough to reduce the size to 18 to 24 inches.

Corsets and Comfort Corset

Moderate corset lacing is not incompatible with vigorous activity. In fact, at the end of the nineteenth century, when the wearing of the corset was common, there were sports corsets specially designed for cycling, tennis, horse riding and maternity.

Many people now believe that all corsets are uncomfortable and that wearing them limits women's lives, citing Victorian literature on healthy or hygienic clothing. However, these writings were the most apt to protest against the misuse of corsets for the manufacture of tight lines; they were less vehement against corsets in themselves. Many reformers have recommended "emancipation corsages", which were essentially fitted vests, like torso-free corsets.

Most corset wearers of modern times will testify that corsets can be comfortable, once one is accustomed to wearing them. A well-fitting corset should be very comfortable. Active women in the Society for Creative Anachronism and pageant groups usually wear corsets as part of the period costume without complaining.

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