The first corsets became popular in 16th century Europe and were believed to have originated in Italy. Corsets began relatively only and evolved dramatically. They went in and out of fashion more than once before the 1840s and 1850s when tight lacing became a popular trend in fashion.
Tight lacing, or corset training, is the act of modifying one’s appearance and posture with the assistance of a rigid and tightly laced (hence the name) corset. It is often referred to as corset training because it can take years of training one’s body to bring the waist down to the desired size. This needs to be done daily and over time; since bodies are not capable of sizing down so significantly from the start.
Tight lacing has been around since the 16th century.
Historically, tightlacers were derided for endangering their health. Especially those who suffered enough to achieve extremely small waists. These people were considered to be slaves to fashion.
While medical and clerical warnings circulated, tight lacing endured as a forerunning fashion for young and especially wealthy women until the turn of the century. These types of corsets can be aesthetic. It creates a dramatic hourglass figure, making the wearer hold themselves straighter, and resulting in other desired visual effects. Additionally, it can be about bodily restriction and the obedience aspect of the training itself.
Tight lacing may also play into medical fetishes for some people. Medical corsets were and occasionally still are used to correct spinal irregularities. However, the obedience and restriction aspects are the more common attraction these days for people who tight lace. Though it can be for aesthetic reasons as well. Currently, one sees tight lacing most regularly in burlesque, fetish scenes, and haute couture fashion.
People of all genders enjoy tight lacing. In fact, one of the most famous tightlacers, who also makes extremely beautiful corsets, is Mr Pearl. Another notable figure is Dita von Teese, who has a 15-inch waist when corseted.
Tight lacing is another form of body modification. One that takes dedication over time and can dramatically alter the body’s shape. Although these days, people are more likely to use “corsets” that involve very little compression, there are some who are entranced by this beautiful form of training.
Caitlin is a writer, sex educator, consultant, and product reviewer who focuses primarily on issues of sex toy and accessory safety, pleasure, sexuality, gender, and more.
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