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how to know your waist trainer size

August 28, 2018

Achieving a classic look by wearing a waist trainer is a gradual process. Some women have a tendency to think that wearing the smallest size possible right away is the best choice. Centuries ago, when corset choices were limited in design and material, that may have been the case. Conditioning the waist for permanent body improvement however, now allows more sizing consideration and freedom. 

How are Waist Trainers Measured? 

Simple waist trainers made from elastic materials are primarily used to improve posture, and to create a minimal taper in the torso. They generally fall into size categories ranging from petite to extra large. An elastic shaper that fits well should be very snug, and it should not roll on the edges if you move around. 

Corset styles however, take three key body measurements into consideration. These are the bust, waist, and hips. Bust measurements are taken near the widest point of the ribcage. Waist measurements are most accurate at the naval. Hip measurements are best at the top of the iliac crest, or pelvic bone (traditional belt line). A cross comparison of these three measurements is what helps professional corset-fitters determine correct sizing. It also helps them determine the correct design for use with certain outfits, dresses, or as daily contouring pieces. 

How to Find Your Natural Waistline 

The natural waistline is near your naval, or just below it. It is the softest, least bony, and least muscular part of the abdomen. Some people have a front “tilt” to their pelvis, or extra tissue that makes this spot a little tough to pinpoint exactly. The most accurate waist measurements are taken with the help of another, as the person being measured stands mostly relaxed with their arms held out to the side. 

Recommended Waist Trainer Sizes 

Using a tape measure, find the circumference around you natural waist. Choose a trainer with a circumference that is between four and seven inches less than that number. If you use a non-imperial system, this would be ten to eighteen centimeters less. For simple elastic athletic waist trainers, choose the next general size down. 

Once you have identified the correct waist size, take note of a few details. Every person’s body is different, so some customization and alteration could be needed. A waist trainer that fits properly should not cut into the skin under the bust, or push the breasts outward unnaturally. Similarly, the bottom of the trainer should not scrape and poke the skin on the sides of the hips, or the lower back. Overall, the correct size should allow most of your natural range of motion. 

If you are unsure about the accuracy of your own measurements, enlist the help of a professional dressmaker, costume designer, or tailor. They can evaluate your body contours in order to come up with the right size. They will also have detailed charts that pinpoint the best style and shape of trainer for your unique goals.

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