As we shuffle from July to August, most places in the Western hemisphere are experiencing some form of summer heat. From humid coastal heat to dry prairies, it's a fact of life that this is the season that can make waist training and sporting a corset daily a challenge. I've been approached by a number of folks who've had questions for me regarding this, and how to beat the heat and not backslide from their waist reductions. I won't lie; the things that makes summer so appealing can also be a pain in the busk when wearing a corset. While there's no full way to avoid the heat, save for living only in air-conditioned rooms or having a yearly migration so that you live in perpetual spring/autumn, neither of these solutions is terribly practical. But fear not, I've got some tips and tricks to help you get through until the leaves start to turn and the air gets that wonderful crisp tang to it that hints at layers, gloves, hats, and boots.
So how do I stop sweating in my corset in the summer time?
The quick answer is: You don't. You can, however, remove a layer by getting a corset that has a single layer of fabric (rather than one that has cotton coutil on the inside), which can allow of a little bit more breathability. However, this type of corset is not as strong as one with dual layers. If you are stuck with a double-layer corset, be sure to wear either a corset guard (like a tube top) or camisole. It's an extra layer, but it will act as a barrier between your perspiration and the corset. Much easier to toss those in the laundry after a hot, sticky day than constantly hand-cleaning your corset. If you're not able to wear a corset guard, be sure to wipe down the inside of your corset with a damp cloth to get off any sweat and save the fabric. Remember that sweat and body lotions can, over time, break down the integrity of your corset.
A good option for summer corset wearing is to wear it over clothes, instead of under them. With sun dresses, wearing the corset over top not only looks lovely and draws attention to your nipped waist, it also acts as a barrier between yourself and the corset. This suits many of 50s-style sundresses, with the tailored waist and the flared skirt. As well, shorter-hipped corsets that are cut higher on the hip allow for greater freedom of mobility, versus long-hipped corsets which can further restrict movement and cover more layers. The short-hipped styles are some of the common 'athletic' corsets of the day, for riding penny farthings and sitting on horseback astride rather than side saddle. I've personally ridden motorcycles with this style, though I'd not recommend wearing any corset during highly aerobic activity.
Summer patios can also pose something of a danger; not the patios themselves, but the siren call of sangria, mimosas, or margaritas. These tasty beverages consumed over a languid brunch or BBQ can be tricky; as with consuming alcohol in a corset the rest of the year, you want to be careful of drinking too much, which can hit you all at once when the corset is removed or else drinking anything carbonated will cause discomfort. The gases have nowhere to go and can result in either cramping or basso profundo belching. Neither are really appealing options. So keep in mind your consumption levels when laced in.
But don't be afraid to shed the corset for beach time and swimming. Active lifestyle combined with sensible eating habits and regular corseting with help create the shape you desire. Happy Summer!
Founder and Editor in Chief of The Lingerie Addict. Author of In Intimate Detail: How to Choose, Wear, and Love Lingerie. I believe lingerie is fashion too, and that everyone who wants it deserves gorgeous lingerie.