If you want to incorporate corsets into your daily life, there are a few things you need to take into consideration.
Corsets on the Outside
If you want to wear corsets on show, you’ll want to choose colours and fabrics that are appropriate for your lifestyle and work. Because Felix & Kitty corsets are made from high-quality garment fabrics (unlike, say, cheap nylon “corsets” from a lingerie store), they really won’t look like you’re wearing your underwear on the outside.
It’s actually possible to wear corsets to quite a lot of workplaces, even an office environment, but you may need to modify the styling to suit. For example, a red floral brocade corset with front lacing might not fly if you work in a law firm (it might be fine if you work for a fashion company, though), but a grey pinstripe one with a solid front could be fine.
Even if you can’t or don’t want to wear a corset to work, you can add them to your social wardrobe. Try the following:
- Try an understated corset over a plain button-down shirt instead of a vest.
- Try a corset over a tank top, mesh shirt, or even a nice T-shirt — or nothing. Combined with a beautiful skirt, it’s an instant evening dress, or if you don’t do skirts, well-cut trousers or leather pants would work as well.
- A corset worn with slacks or a pencil skirt under a suit jacket or blazer can work even for the office.
- You can request a modesty panel under the back laces, or a panel that covers the front lacing, to reduce the “corset-ness” of the corset and make it look more like standard daywear.
- An underbust corset can be worn like a wide belt. Use it to cinch in a billowy poet shirt or a peasant top.
Corsets on the Inside
There are many reasons you might prefer to wear your corset under your other clothes.
An underbust corset worn beneath your regular clothes really doesn’t show much, even under tight shirts (you can tuck in the bottom into your waistband to minimize show-through), and can make a dramatic difference in your waist and hip shape, whether you want to emphasize or eliminate your curves. Underbusts also give somewhat better lower back support, so it may be a better choice if you want a corset just for that purpose.
An overbust corset’s top edge can sometimes show under thin fabric or tight garments, though it really depends on your particular situation. If you’re wearing a corset for bust support instead of a bra, for instance, you should be aware that the side profile created by a corset is quite different from the one created by a corset – and you’ll almost certainly see a top ridge under clothes. Some people love this and other people don’t care for it, so you will have to decide for yourself.
If you’re using a corset to flatten and straighten your body curvature, however, that’s a different story; it’s much easier to have an inconspicuous top edge under clothes when you’re compressing something instead of uplifting it.
Whatever your purpose, corsets for under-clothing wear should only be made with washable, abrasion-resistant materials, so be sure to mention it during your consultation that this is what you’re planning.
Also, you should still wear some kind of liner between your skin and the corset so you can avoid washing it more often than necessary; also, some people’s skin chemistry can degrade the corset fabric and cause it to wear out faster. The liner can be any thin breathable garment, like a tube top or lightweight undershirt. If you don’t have anything suitable, let us know when you’re filling out your consultation form (or contact us), and we can supply you with some options.
You may want to a corset that’s specifically designed to go under your other clothing if you:
- Suffer from back pain, posture problems, or other physical issues that might benefits from daily support
- Work at a job that requires you to sit or stand for long periods and results in back fatigue
- Want to use a corset as a body shell to change your profile on an ongoing basis, or to aid during transitioning
- Are a trans woman who wants a curvier shape
- Are a trans man who wants a straighter shape
- Are non-binary and prefer to neutralize your silhouette
- Want something that replaces bras due to personal preference or physical issues (e.g. grooved shoulders from strap dig-in, neck pain or headaches from heavy breasts, or inability to find supportive bras in your size)