Corsets popped up again in the history books at around 1700 BC. The Minoans were quite fond of the style, and it was used on both men and women to tighten the waist. Their corset design left the breasts exposed. The use of corsets continued on throughout history, from Ancient Egypt to Greece.

Throughout the centuries improvements to the corset were made. In the 13th century, corsets were worked directly into gowns, as the era favored a smaller look. In the 14th century, a number of new fabrics began to grow in popularity (more details at [] ). These fabrics were more free flowing than that which was used before, and corsets were used to provide a tight shape back to the top.

In the 16th century, they even used steel in the corsets. Many noble women were ordered to have a waist size that was not bigger than 13 inches – it was rather extreme, but the demands of fashion often are. This was also a time when the corset began to separate from the gown as well. The look for skirts leaned towards a full, heavy fall, while the top needed to be tight and form fitting. Because of how elaborate the corsets and undergarments became during this time, gowns were often designed to strategically flash the corsets or otherwise reveal them.

The 18th century as a huge time for corset improvement. The main cause of this? A doctor inventing the metal eyelet. This meant that corsets could end up even tighter (much to the chagrin of the ladies, I’m sure). While they remained popular in the 19th century, it wasn’t until the 20th century that Madonna popularized corsets once again.

And today? Today corsets are used for lingerie, outerwear, fetish wear, and just about anything you can imagine! They are definitely a staple in fashion, and just keep getting better and better. The best thing about it? With modern corsets, you can actually breath!


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