Corset 101: Firm vs Squishy

Not all bodies are created equal-

“Squishability” matters when sizing for a corset

skylar-cupcake-411-ivoryHello OC Blog Readers. We receive lots of emails, chats and social media sizing help requests. Often, we find that people are in between sizes or have sizing options based on the corset style, their goals and comfort level, and yes-how squishy they think they are. But what does that mean?

Really just what it sounds like. For example, someone who does core strength training several days a week and has a 30″ waist will likely be much firmer than someone with a 30″ who never works out. You will want to test out your squishy vs firm factor when you are relaxed, not with your abs fully engaged. Firm folks don’t necessarily need to be gym rats. Some people just have less “give” in their midsection than others. Since corsets work by cinching it at the waist, it only makes sense that those who are softer and more easily squish will be able to size down a bit more than someone who feels more solid.

human-ribsAnother consideration for determining your “squishability” is torso length. The area between your floating ribs and your high hip bone is malleable for everyone (firmer folks just take more time and effort to get there) as the tissue and organs in that region can move around quite easily-just like they do when you are pregnant. So if you have more distance, the corset may not meet any resistance like it will with someone with a much shorter torso. This is not necessarily a factor of height as my loyal blog readers know-tall people can have short torsos and vice-versa.

Here are some hard (or soft) numbers to help out. Right now over my dress I have a 28″ waist waist cropwith the tape measure just taught. I can pull the tape measure tight and get 26″ without too much struggle. I do have a longer torso which gives me a bit more “squishability”, but overall I am more on the firm side (all those hours at the gym fending off Father Time). My beautiful friend Julie stopped, and she went from almost 29″ down to 25″-so definitely more squishy than myself and sizes down to a 22 as well. I measured my lovely daughter (through her flannel shirt) and she went from 30 inches to 27 inches-so she has more squish factor than me..but not a lot.

corset-cartoon

Is this too tight?

Like much of OTR corset sizing, this is not an exact science. We all have difference tolerance levels for what is snug vs too tight. Squishability is more pertinent on smaller frames than plus-size women (or men) who tend to have more fluff. But you should not discount this factor. A 38″ waist can also be more firm or more squishy. Remember, just because you can’t start off sizing down more doesn’t mean you cannot achieve that goal through waist training.

 

19 thoughts on “Corset 101: Firm vs Squishy

  1. Mora

    Hello,
    I want to start waist training but I need some advice as to what size or style I should start off with. I have a 39″ under bust, 341/2″ waist and 41″ hips. I can tighten my waist down about 2 inches

    Reply
    1. Cheri Dudek Post author

      Hi Mora,

      You have a pretty large underbust to waist ratio..so I think a size 28 is all you will want to size down in the 411 or 201. If you have the length for the 426, I think a 28 in that as well..however it may not be as snug as you want at the bottom edge. If you think your underbust is smaller than 39″, than you might size down to a 26 in the 426 which will fit better at the hip.

      Reply
  2. Lacy Simon

    Hi,
    I wanted to start waist training myself and not sure on what size or style. I would like to try the CS-426. My measurements are under bust 38 in, 39in waist and 45 1/2 in. hip. Do you have any suggestions?
    Thanks so much!

    Reply
  3. Lisa

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart for this topic. I was getting very depressed at my lack of change in a corset. I just went up and measured myself both at the normal “snug” and then pulled the tape tight. I struggled to get a 1 1/2 inch difference. Despite being a plus sized woman, I have almost no squish factor. With that in mind, is it realistic for me to think I’ll ever get to the point where I’ll have a visible difference in my proportions?

    Reply
  4. Brittany chin

    Hi
    I want to start waist training but I’m not sure what size to order. I have a 30in waist, 35 1/2in hip and 30 1/2in under bust. I’m interested in the new waspie mini corset any suggestions? And how long should I wear one each day? Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Cheri Dudek Post author

      Hi Brittany,

      I think a size 24 will work well for you in the 301 or the 305. Once you have properly seasoned your corset, you can wear it for as long as it comfortable for you!

      Reply
      1. Brittany chin

        Thanks!!! And one more question how I can tell when it’s seasoned? once it fits perfect on me with no gaps? And how long does the seasoning take I read that it can take 10-14 days? Thanks again!

        Reply
      1. Cheri Dudek Post author

        Actually, there is no evidence that anyone has ever had a rib removed. Your bottom two ribs (your floating ribs) are able to move in. They will not stay that way forever (like your teeth after braces-a retainer is necessary), you will need to continue to corset train. There are some really good books out there…The Corset by Valerie Steele for one.

        Reply
    1. Cheri Dudek Post author

      Hi Tiara,

      Is your corset fully seasoned? During the seasoning process you can tighten your corset slowly after about an hour of wear each time you wear it to break it in. Once your corset is fully seasoned, then it is OK to cinch as much as you want so as not to cause any pain or too much discomfort.

      Reply
      1. tiara

        I’ve only been in it a couple of days it is a latex one and I’m finally comfortable in it so I take it it’s too soon?

        Reply
  5. Courtney

    Thanks for this post! I am on the fluffier side of things but am running into hip issues. I have a 38″ natural waist and wear a size 16. I bought a 30″ CS-426 about a month ago and after seasoning, I can size it down past the modesty panel (so maybe 3-4″ gap). I could probably go down more, but am running into issues with the bottom of the corset being too tight.

    I bought a 34″ CS-426 last week to see how it would fit, and I was able to take it out of the tissue and close it all the way from the get go. The (unseasoned) hips were very wide.

    I am going to exchange the 34″ and wonder if I should (1) try a 32″ so I can possibly close the corset more without binding my hips or (2) stick with a 30″ which looks good and not be able to tighten the waist further (at least until my hips get smaller or the corset stretches a bit at the bottom), or (3) maybe try something with a little bigger hip spring?

    Thanks in advance!

    Reply
  6. Tamar

    So… should someone who can only pull it 2″ stick to a 4″ reduction in their first corset and a 4″ pull fit an 8″ reduction to start?
    I’m still not sure what size I should get, I have a 23 1/2″ waist that can be pulled down to 22″

    Reply
    1. Cheri Dudek Post author

      Hi Tamar,

      Not necessarily. But with such a small waist to begin with, you will not be able to size down much right away-that will take waist training for you. Depending on your upper hip and underbust measurement, you will probably want a size 18.

      Reply

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