Seasoning a corset is as important as choosing the right style and size measurements, yet it is mentioned far less often.
For a corset to be comfortable to wear on a daily basis it must be seasoned – which means it has been worn enough to loosen and adjust to your body with time and use.
Corset seasoning usually takes an average of 6-8 weeks of wearing a corset loosely from a few minutes to a few hours every day. Many people will do this while at home. It is done not only for the benefit of the corset and fabric but also for the body to get used to the unique personality of the corsets structure.
The benefit of seasoning is simple – like a leather shoe gradually moulds around certain contours of your foot, a corset will take on some of the curves of your body.
Just as a new shoe is best to wear for shorter times before a full days wear, so a corset should be worn for short periods of time and will become more comfortable with more daily use.
Some of my favourite corsets are seasoned to my body shape to the point that the hip sticks out at an acute angle when the busk is laying flat on the table. Even without my body in there, the spiral steel boning has adjusted to retain my curves.
This will not always be the case, but is for me because I personally like tightlacing– (lacing down more than 4-6 inches) where the angles will always be more extreme.
To season for beginners, roughly follow the following guidelines :
- Unbox new corset and try on for size, only loosely lacing because the fabric is still stiff and new. This will avoid any sudden tears of the new fabric.
- Wear the new corset loosely for 10-30 minutes for three days. This short time period will let the fabric absorb any moisture and oils from your skin and start to relax it, while preventing any minor bruising or irritation from stiff areas of the corset.
- Continue as comfortable to wear the corset for the rest of the week for increasingly longer periods, always LOOSE or gently snug to avoid any discomfort. Trust your body and let the corset mould to your curves.
- Wear the corset loosely for the following weeks and it will gradually ease closer to your curves and you can start to increase reduction as you feel comfortable.
REMEMBER : Corsets should NEVER be painful!
If so, you’re wearing it incorrectly!!
Mesh corsets will season faster than others, and I have found that my lovely Angela Friedman corsets season very fast and can be worn for long hours very soon after arriving.
For brides this seasoning is especially important to do and I have written a post on the topic for anyone thinking of getting married while wearing a corset built into or underneath their wedding dress.
Here’s a lovely informative video on corset seasoning by Lucy of Lucy’s Corsetry:
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