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Buying a corset


Here you will find tips for buying corsets.

How can I get a corset?

I’m not commercially minded, thus do not sell corsets and have no obligations whatsoever towards a corsetier or manufacturer! I would like to help you to get your ideal corset. I will explain the important points in ordering and list some verified sources for corsets.


First of all you should think about which type of corset you want and what you would like to achieve by wearing one. Thus it can be helpful to read the section Adviser first. Possible selection criteria are:

  • Which material in which colour (satin, elastic material, leather, etc.)?
  • Which corset form (short/long, short/long waist, with/without bra, wasp waist, stem waist, straight front)?
  • What waist reduction would you like to achieve?
  • How comfortable would you like your corset to be?
  • Do you wish to wear it under or over your clothes?
  • How long do you wish to wear it (rarely, frequently, constantly)?
  • Do you intend to wear it only with skirts or also with trousers?
  • Which features would you like your corset to have (spoon busk, double busk, reinforcing boning inside/outside, suspenders/garters, reinforcements, waist tape)?
  • Do you want a ready-made corset (inexpensive, might not fit you perfectly) or a made-to-measure corset (more expensive, good fit)?

After having thought about these questions for yourself you can choose the optimum model, dependent on your requirements and on the efficiency of the manufacturer.


There are three important things when ordering a corset: measure, measure, measure. This is really true, since a corset is not just another piece of clothing, but if the measurements are not correctly and carefully taken, it is worthless! If it is too big, one does not achieve the desired waistline, perhaps even no constriction at all. If it is too tight, one can easily be frustrated, since one cannot close the corset, which does not contribute to the corset’s life span. Perhaps it is too big around the hips and has an acceptable waistline (this once occurred to me). Then the problem is that the stomach sticks out like a ‘ball’ below the waist, which is unhealthy and very unpleasant. This list could be continued. Therefore: measure, measure, measure.

Usually the following measurements are needed. The more of them the manufacturer takes into account, the better, because the more exactly the corset can be made to fit:

  • Girths: bust, underbust, normal waist, desired waist width, upper hip (at the upper edge of the hip bones), lower hip (this is where the lower edge of the corset will be).
  • Front heights: from the waist to the upper edge, from the waist to the lower edge.
  • Side heights: from the waist to the upper edge, from the waist to the lower edge.
  • Rear heights: from the waist to the upper edge, from the waist to the lower edge.

With these measurements the corset can be made to fit well to the body of the wearer. Some manufacturers use only the person’s size for their work. That must be rejected as completely unsuitable. Sometimes, corsets are available with waistlines in steps of 5 cm, which is too rough.

Unfortunately, the process of measuring alone is not sufficient, the good fit of the corset does certainly also depend on the manufacturer! This must be considered when ordering, otherwise the corset will be a failure (this once occurred to me). Many, if not most manufacturers take the given measurement to be the size of the corset lying on the table. That is simple and practicable and… unsuitable, because if you order a corset with a waistline of 50 cm, and if the manufacturer makes it according to the mentioned method, the corset will produce a waistline of maybe 55 cm when you wear it and measure your waist! The reason is that the material will expand under the pressure. Therefore: Ask your manufacturer and inform yourself about his measuring method; and take this into account when filling in the measurement sheet. An example: I have the desired measurements and subtract 5 cm (e.g. I ordered my 17" corset as a 15" corset, and it actually produces a waist width of 17", measured over the - closed - corset!).

Nota bene: Do subtract approx. 5 cm from all measurements, if your manufacturer uses the measurements of the corset (lying on the table)! But do discuss this problem beforehand with the manufacturer!