A corset is probably not a priority on your fall shopping list right now. This often-constricting underpinning doesn’t have the shiniest track record when it comes to comfortability. Its history of placing a tad too much emphasis on slimming down a woman’s waist silhouette can make the very idea of wearing a corset feel anti-feminist in a way — but that mood (and approach) seems to be shifting. For starters, designers have reimagined this boudoir-inspired staple for the modern age with iterations that integrate stretchier fabrics, artistic detailing, and unique textures.
But beyond that, the biggest indicator that corsetry is a trend worth investing in is by looking at the streets. Over the last several years, bustier tops have pushed beyond the borders of the bedroom and into the daylight as a legitimate layering piece. Celebrity trendsetters like Bella Hadid and Rihanna normalized the idea of wearing a corset with an oversized blazer and vintage jeans while influencers and fashion-week-goers styled their bustiers in other innovative ways, like over white button-down shirts or layered on top of dresses. All this to say, the corset looks quite a bit more different in 2020 than it did in the 19th century — and for the better. Ahead, see and shop ten outfits incorporating this unexpectedly versatile piece.
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How to Style a Corset: Standout Suiting
Want to know the simplest way to liven up a classic suit? Add a corset. This layering trick adds dimension in a unique way and is best achieved by wearing it over a tee, thin sweater, or button-down shirt.
How to Style a Corset: With Autumnal Staples
A vintage-inspired corset is probably not the first thing that comes to mind when you think of what goes best with a leather jacket and wool scarf, but as proven above, it works. For cooler weather, consider layering a second-skin turtleneck underneath.
How to Style a Corset: Over Sporty Layers
Corsets intrinsically feel old-world and feminine, which is why they are the perfect candidate for styling with something that contrasts. For example, over a sporty sweatshirt in a punchy pop of color.
How to Style a Corset: In Place of a Bodysuit
Bodysuits and jeans are a common combination to throw together without having to worry about tucking or pulling. In the spirit of mixing things up, swap out your one-piece for a corset this autumn. Unsurprisingly, it makes for a chic weekend outing ensemble.
How to Style a Corset: Denim Nouveau
When you put on a long-sleeve dress, it's not an automatic thought to layer something fitted over the top. But, adding a contrasting corset is a cool way to break up a printed style.
How to Style a Corset: As a WFH Upgrade
To mix up your work from home style, try skipping your usual bike shorts or sweats for relaxed trousers and a structured top.
How to Style a Corset: Below a Leather Jacket
Corsets and leather jackets are two edgy staples that can balance out an ultra-feminine dress. Pick your favorite fancy floral number and layer something sleek and structured on top.
How to Style a Corset: Pop of Print
No need to stick to neutrals — a floral corset is a perfectly fun way to embrace this look for fall. Layer on a shrunken cardigan for an extra on-trend take on the 2020 season.
How to Style a Corset: '90s-Inspired
Denim on denim was perfected in the '90s by Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake, but you can bring it into the current year too. A denim bustier can be styled with jeans for a matchy-matchy look or you can wear it with trousers for something a little bit more subdued.
How to Style a Corset: Third Piece
Every outfit is made more interesting when you add in a third piece. Try finishing off your go-to button down and pant combination with a corset on top. Leave the lower half of the blouse unbuttoned for a final playful touch.