A close up of a grey mens corset with spot detailing

Corsets For Men

If you're a male tightlacer and considering the leap to a bespoke piece, Orchid are here to help. After almost 20 years of fitting men's corsets, I have an extensive understanding of how to maximise the appearance of even small waist reductions or minimal hip to waist ratios. After all, about half my returning client list identify as male! Here, we'll talk about the difference in fit between corsets designed for male and female bodies, and how to get the silhouette you're dreaming of.

Comparing Men's Bespoke Corsets To Women's Off-The-Rack Corsetry

The first thing I hear from my male and AMAB clients is usually, that out of desperation, they’ve been driven to buying off the rack women’s corsets. Maybe even borrowing from their girlfriends or wives!. This is all very well, and a little experimentation with a medium like corsetry can add a lot of value to the first bespoke piece, however, don’t expect them to fit you well. Why not? Well, a few anatomical differences will account for the four main complaints I hear from men who’ve been trialling women’s off-the-rack corsetry.

A black male corset with trims

“The corset is too narrow in the chest- it pinches my ribs and there’s a huge gap between the laces at the top”

Women's ribs do not usually flare outwards above the waist to the same extent as male bodies do. The archetypal male shape is quite triangular, broad at the chest with little waist definition, and narrower hips. Women will tend to slope more gently out towards the bust, with the allowance in that area of a corset left for a bust to project, rather than a broad ribcage to fan out.

“I can’t sit down in the corset- it’s so long below the waist”

From making men and women’s bespoke corsets for 17+ years, I can say with confidence that most men need a corset around 1-2″ shorter in the lap than a woman of equivalent (or shorter) height. The male genitalia can make any additional length very uncomfortable in a way that would not impact on women. As such, women will usually prefer a pointed or curved base, allowing space for our thighs when we sit down. Almost all my male clients require a straight base to their corsets, as they do not carry weight on their legs in the same way.

“The gap at the back of this corset looks like a “V”, it’s already closed at the hips, and it’s not even tight!”

The simple answer to this is child bearing. Women are typically built to a much broader hip shape than gentlemen, as mentioned in the first point, a man’s natural triangular shape is in starkest contrast at the hips.

“It’s so hard to reduce the waist”

The male physique tends to be much more muscle-bound by default. Women tend to be much softer in the torso, allowing for a greater cinch without really feeling it. A 4″ reduction for a gentleman is perhaps the equivalent of a 6-7″ reduction for a woman. This makes extreme male tightlacers like Mr Pearl even more distinctive in their achievements.

A male tightlacer wears a training corset

Approaching The Challenge Of Tightlacing For Men

Naturally, dealing with bespoke corsets automatically deals with most of our problems above. The individual's own shape is used to sculpt the corset pattern, providing correct coverage and support. However, a few things must still be considered to lead us to a really outstanding outcome. What are the goals of the wearer? If they want to retain a natural, masculine figure with back support then we must choose a style that will prove comfortable for long periods of wear. If our client is looking to feminise their figure without the use of padding or enhancements, then we will choose a corset style that will maximise the waist definition and balance out the narrower hips with the broad ribcage. Does the wearer carry weight in front of them? (a “beer belly” or paunch) in which case we must choose the right hardware to smooth out their figure and provide a sleek silhouette. We will also tend to use more rigid boning when making corsets for men in order to work with the stronger muscle tone we mentioned above. We’ll also consider the durability of the construction choices we’ve made very carefully.

Bespoke Possibilities

We offer many different styles of corsets for men. For classic masculine pieces we would tend to offer underbust or even waistcoat corsets, where the purpose is to sculpt and perfect the figure, smoothing a prominent abdomen, and creating a trim waist. For more essential wear such as back support, simpler and more functional corsets can be designed, offering discretion under daily clothing and a sleek finish. Where a male client is seeking feminine curves, we can work to padded or unpadded figures, providing overbust corsets that cater to bust enhancement, and underbusts designed to provide a feminine form and act as attractive underwear beneath clothing. Some of our male clients looking for a fetish corset have chosen knee-length or body corsets, that fully encompass the upper torso and shoulders. We can create various locking devices and themed pieces for a special event, just send us some details of what you desire to create, and let us help you realise your ambitions.

A man in a feminine corset dress

Standard Sized Male Corsetry

As of Spring 2024, we are getting ready to release our first standard sized corset for men and male bodied people. The Idris corset is designed to be a practical sculpting corset, suitable for regular tightlacing and tested on a wide range of body types! If you have particular concerns or are seeking dramatic waist reductions then a bespoke corset is likely still the best course for you. However, our Idris will give a 4" waist reduction and a classically shaped silhouette at a fraction of the price and avoid the waiting list of bespoke creations! The ideal building block in your tightlacing regime.

If you have questions about corsetry for men and male bodied people we are always here to help, and look forward to hearing from you.

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