Bust out the salt and pepper, today we are chatting about corset seasoning. Corsets are a wonderful garment to have in your wardrobe and can be worn as an under garment or as a statement piece over clothing depending on your personal preference. Now here is where it get’s a little tricky; within the corset community (makers and wearers alike), there is a little debate as to whether seasoning a corset is necessary or not. Personally, I’m a bit on the fence as I see and agree with the argument on both sides but for the purpose of todays article, I figured I’d explain seasoning to help those seeking information. In order to help a corset fit the body and be comfortable, many wearers of the garment ‘season’ the corset to ensure it lies well against the body.
Seasoning a corset is basically ‘breaking it in’ to ensure it fits well, begins to feel more comfortable and allows your body to get used to wearing a corset. It’s a little like a pair of shoes that need to be worn around the house before a night out on the town. I’ve recently been asked to collaborate with Glamorous Corsets who were kind enough to send me two corsets to demonstrate the seasoning process with you all. Last week, we did a full review of the corsets I received as part of this collaboration so if you’d like to read about that, please go here.
Let us begin by deciding what corset to buy. Many decades ago, corset seasoning did not exist as corsets were made specifically for the customer and only them. The fit would be perfect and not need much adjusting (corset history is quite extensive so this is a very simplified view). Today, corsets are a bit more readily available and very rarely made for specific individuals; stores such as Glamorous Corset offer fitting assistance to customers to make sure they buy the best possible fitting corset. Corset fit is very important, many measurements should be carefully taken and even I had to discuss and measure multiple times. Receiving professional help and advice from Glamorous Corsets was amazing, I know I would have purchased the wrong size if I had been left on my own and was recommended the Jade corset in black and the Jolie short corset in beige both in the 24″ size. Once the corsets arrived, I was so glad to have had such professional advice as the fit was perfect on my torso and I could begin seasoning.
Once you have a good quality corset with a decent fit, you may begin seasoning. To season a corset takes several weeks (most commonly between two and three weeks) and requires daily commitment to the garment. Seasoning is the very slow process of wearing the corset for various lengths of time to allow the garment to mould to the shape of your body and to allow your body to mould to the shape of the garment. In order to help your seasoning process, I have made (along with the help of my pinup bestie Miss Vintage Orchid and illustrator extraordinaire) this little table to outline the timeline I normally use.
This schedule, which I have used many times over for different corsets, I find to be the most comfortable and easy to follow. I normally put my corset on a little after my morning snack and then wear it for the daily allotted time. The first two days, wear the corset for about an hour and a half (perfect to wear whilst watching a movie). Days 3 and 4, wear for about two hours. Days 5 and 6, wear the corset for 3 hours. Days 7 to 9, wear the corset for 4 hours. Days 10 to 12 for about 5 hours and days 13 and 14, wear the corset for around 6 hours. You can continue seasoning for an extra week and work your way up to 8 hours of wear but this is up to you completely.
It is important to commit to the slow and gradual process of seasoning a corset. You may wish to see results quickly but by lacing your corset too tightly and wearing it for the first time over several hours, you run the risk of damaging the garment and warping the supports, injuring yourself and feeling terribly uncomfortable. It’s worth noting that a corset should never burst and pop out it’s boning; this means that the corset was badly made and should not be worn.
When seasoning a corset, you don’t have to “tight lace” and the corset should feel like a nice hug around your waist instead of a vice grip. There’s no reason to ever put pressure on the corset and not be able to breathe so forget all those awful scenes from period dramas where women are being tortured into a corset or passing out from lack of breath. If laced correctly, you should be able to easily put a few of your fingers into the top and bottom of a corset.
Whilst wearing and seasoning your corset, you should always wearing something underneath the garment. This helps comfort and stops your skin pinching, as well as keeps the garment cleaner (so you don’t sweat onto it). You don’t need anything fancy so just a singlet or t-shirt will suffice. As you can see from my corset seasoning collage, my house clothes leave a bit to be desired but they work well with corset seasoning.
Whilst seasoning your corset, you can feel free to tighten after about 45 minutes of wear although it’s not necessary. The goal isn’t to make your waist as small as possible as quickly, but to allow you to adjust and find comfort in wearing the corset. In saying this, you can also loosen the corset if you are really uncomfortable so never feel like being unable to breathe or move as a good thing.
You might at this stage be wondering, ‘how do I know when the corset is seasoned?. There are a few things that you might notice once you’ve finished your two week seasoning schedule;
-you should find that your corset fits you like a glove; the top and bottom should lay comfortable against your body.
-the hooks and pins at the front should latch into place without a struggle
-the lace should easily pull through the back grommets
With wearing corsets on and off for several years, I have only really had to season about four of them as they were cheapies off Ebay. When a corset is well made and fits well, you really don’t have to season it. I do still recommend wearing one over a period of time if you are not used to corsets (some people buy one for a wedding or special event) but quality is everything when it comes to corsets. After wearing my Glamorous Corsets for over two months, I have really found them to be comfortable and well made. I only really seasoned them for the purpose of this demonstration and found the one I did not season (the Jade Corset) to still fit me really well and snug. Whilst seasoning the Jolie corset, I found it to be really comfortable and I went about my daily tasks and work forgetting I was even wearing it until my buzzer alerted me that it was time to take it off.
Glamorous Corsets have been such a lovely company to collaborate with and have been kind enough to give me a discount code to gift all my readers a sneaky discount at checkout. To get 15% off at checkout, please enter MISSMONMON15 during your shopping experience. I will have a separate review on both of my corsets but just wanted to start with this article about seasoning first. There will be a few more corset related articles to follow so do keep an eye out for that, I will let you know when new blogs come out on my instagram so give me a follow there to not miss out on anything that I am up to.
A special thanks to Miss Vintage Orchid again for the gorgeous illustration for this blog. I wish I looked this glamorous whilst seasoning my corsets!
Note: This is not a sponsored post. All opinions and thoughts expressed are solely my own and not influenced in any way. This page contains affiliate links/codes which aids in funding future reviews.