Conical vs. Hourglass Corsets: The Subtle Silhouette Differences

Conical vs. Hourglass Corsets: The Subtle Silhouette Differences

Featured Corset: Jolie Short Beige Cotton Corset

As much as women love having their bodies compared to apples, pears, bananas, and strawberries, or alternately, geometric shapes like squares, rectangles, and triangles, the truth is that all of our bodies are unique, and it is thereby impractical to lump us into such undignified groups.  Still, there are times when shaping categories are important, such as when you’re purchasing a waist training corset.

Regardless of your natural shape, a corset gives you the ability to mold your form in certain ways.  The type of corset shape you choose will determine your body shape when you wear it, and in some cases, how your body appears under clothing.  This is where it’s important to consider the benefits to be gained from choosing conical vs hourglass corset shapes.

While there are several different corset shapes, these remain two of the most popular.  How are these silhouettes different and what can you expect when choosing one or the other?  Here’s what you need to know.

Conical Corsets

In a sense, most corsets offer hourglass appeal because they emphasize the smallness of your waist.  Conical corsets, however, are not as curvy as some other models.  This corset shape, which gained popularity in the 1950s, gets its name from the fact that it has a cone-like shape from the waist up.  In other words, it extends upward in a relatively straight line, while the bottom half features an outward curve from the waist to the hips.

The conical corset creates a streamlined taper from the bust or underbust to the waist, much like the shape of a traditional Barbie doll torso.  This “ice cream cone” shape is intended to create a flatter, less dramatic flare in the upper torso, but it can have the downside of compressing the rib cage in a way curvier corsets might not.

That said, this shape is actually preferred by women with certain body types, such as those who have a narrower ribcage naturally.  By its very nature, the conical corset creates a milder hourglass shape than curvy corset styles, and some women who prefer only mild reduction will like it for this reason.  Conical corsets also tend to compress the bust more than curvy silhouettes, so women with larger busts should definitely try before they buy in order to avoid spillage.

Hourglass Corsets

When debating conical vs hourglass corset styles, your choice really comes down to two defining factors: your body shape and your desired outcome.  If you have a narrower torso and ribcage, conical corsets will offer more waist definition without necessarily calling out a lack of curves.  If you have natural curves and a prominent ribcage to begin with, a conical corset might not deliver the comfort or enhancement you crave.

This is where an hourglass corset could prove more suitable.  This shape looks a bit like the rounded jigger in your barware set, with two cups fused bottom to bottom.  The silhouette is a lot more like an actual hourglass than some other corset types – hence the name.

While the waist nips in, the top and bottom, flaring out from the waist, are rounded to cup both the ribs and the hips.  This style helps to define your waist without flattening your ribs quite as much, literally offering a little more breathing room.

When you’re waist training, it’s always a good idea to start out by working with your body shape, but you also probably have a look in mind.  If you like the conical shape and you’re not concerned about the prospect of flattening your ribs somewhat, there’s no reason not to give it a try.  If, on the other hand, you want to emphasize all your curves and enjoy a bit more comfort, an hourglass corset could be the ideal choice for you.

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