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What Is a Corset?

Corsets are some of the sexiest clothing items in the world!

They are form fitted, always sexy, and can shave a few inches off your waist without a diet!

Corsets generally lace up the back for a cinching effect while bustiers can have a similar look as a corset, but usually have a comfortable adjustable closure such as hook and eyes and tend to be made of stretchier fabrics. Both are usually boned (stiffened vertically in the seams most commonly with a plastic/polycarbonate material) for extra shaping. The best corsets on the market are boned with spring or similar steel for some flexibility for comfort but with the most support for tight lacing without damage to the corset. Fuller figures should never consider a strapless corset without steel boning as heavier busts need the extra support.

Some corsets are designed to be more decorative than cinching - check the fabric for a guide. Any light fabrics such as satin, satin jacquard or stretch fabrics are generally designed for looks and comfort rather than cinching. Cost of the corset is also a good indicator - those under $80-$100 are most likely more decorative styles and should not be laced tightly or used for body modification purposes. For body shaping or modification (permanently reshaping your waist to a more hourglass figure), we recommend the steel boned corsets. These corsets are more heavily lined as well as boned for a much sturdier corset that can be worm longer and tighter without damaging the croset. Investing in a good, sturdy corset can be a wonderful gift for yourself and the sturdy styles will last you for years with proper care.

Our corsets are lightly boned unless otherwise noted and no corset should should be laced too tightly the first wearing - even leather can tear if over stressed, so be careful to break it in. You should never over tighten a corset but ease it tighter each time you wear it - give it time to shape to your body. Our sturdier steel boned corsets can be used for more drastic body modification (molding your waist to a perfect hourglass shape over time), but even they should be broken in over time for comfort and to save stress on the grommets.

Our corsets are divided into Overbust and Underbust sections. These terms indicate where the corset falls on your body - Overbust cover the bust and can be worn alone out on the town. Underbust corsets leave the breasts bare and are also called waist cinchers. They are designed to be worn over another garment, though can also be worn alone of course. Many come with matching g string panties as well.

Choosing a Corset

Choosing a Corset Shape: The busk is the front of the corset, usually in 2 parts on either side of hooks or other fasteners. With heavier corsets, this area is molded or made of steel. Some are flat busks and, if the lacing is done as one piece (see lacing your corset below), can flatten the breasts. This is popularly called the “Elizabethan” style corset as it was popular during the reign of Elizabeth I. Another style is spoon busks - they have a curve that accommodates the breasts giving them a “shelf” for the breasts to rest on giving a more curvy look. There are some that have cups for the breasts allowing for lift and separation similar to a bra. We generally recommend flat busks for those with smaller breasts or if you want to flatten your breasts and spoon or cup styles for those with fuller figures.

Choosing a Corset Length: We offer some corsets with a long line style extending onto the hips. These styles are recommended for those with longer torsos or those who wish to make their torso appear longer. Petite figures should look for corsets ending at the hip or waist. Under the bust corsets are generally called ‘cinchers’ or ‘waist cinchers’.

Choosing Your Size: Heavier corsets like those with steel boning should be ordered 2-4 inches smaller than your natural waist. (Loosely measure the narrowest part of your torso). This allows you to lace them tightly to reduce your waist 1-4 inches. Lighter weight fabrics should be ordered based on your bust measurement - go one or two inches smaller than your bra size if you wish to do some cinching. Remember to be careful of unlined or light fabrics as they will tear if you lace them too tightly - those styles should be considered decorative tops.

Lacing Your Corset: Even a flat busk corset can be laced to allow the breasts a little more freedom. We suggest using 2 - 3 laces depending on your figure (use 3 if you have a great variation in your waist to bust or hips). Most corsets come with one lacing so you may need to purchase more at a fabric or craft store. Lace it in sections so you can adjust the fit the way you want. Divide the eyelets (where the lacings thread thru) in the back in 2 sections. Example: If there are 30 rows of eyelets in the back. Use lacing one in the top 18, lacing 2 in the bottom 18 and tie both in the middle (allow a little overlap for the smoothest fit). Experiment a bit to find what works best for your individual shape.

When using one long lacing, take a look at the diagram at right. Start at the top and fold your lacing in half inserting the ends from the outside to inside on each side to begin. Cross each side over and insert on the hole below from underneath. Go about half way down and make a very large loop in the center of the lacing coming up from the inside then down through the outside without crossing the laces. Continue to cross over from underneath. At the bottom, insert the laces into the last holes from outside to inside tying off each side separately in knots to keep them from pulling through the last eyelet. (Lacing is probably longer than you need - it can be trimmed before being knotted at the bottom). Pull any slack back into the loops you left in the center. When putting on your corset, loosen the laces to allow you to lace or hook the front closed, then have someone take one loop in each hand and pull the corset tight. Tie the loops into a bow in the back and you have a perfectly tied corset! Please note that your corset does not have to meet in the back as shown here - it most probably will not.

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