Modern corset styles and silhouettes

Corsets come in a huge range of shapes and styles, and finding a corsetiere (or a corset pattern) that makes corsets in a shape that suits your body can be quite daunting! Here's a quick look at the main styles and silhouettes of modern corsetry and how they can shape the body.


This is the most mildly shaped corset silhouette, with minimal reduction and a smooth conical shape. This a great choice if you like the idea of a corset but aren't sure about waist reduction, or only want very slight shaping. Cheap corset companies often use this style but make big shaping claims based on how much steel boning the corsets contain - the shaping is determined by the corset pattern, NOT the boning, so feel free to completely ignore these claims, and opt to invest in a quality corset from a corsetiere if you're looking for proper, comfortable shaping.


Conical corsets create a smooth line from the upper edge of the corset to the waist, with little to no rounding at the ribs. Consequently, this style can be a little uncomfortable to wear unless you have naturally narrow ribs, or are only aiming to achieve a small waist reduction. Regardless of this hitch, conical rib corsets tend to be quite popular as a 'mainstream' shape, as they are often not as dramatic as other shapes and have a more universal appeal.


A classic corseted shape, with rounded ribs and hips and a defined waist. This style has a little more rib room than the conical shape, it should be snug around the ribs and may have a small amount of compression at the front. Because of this extra room, the hourglass shape allows for more waist reduction than the conical silhouette.

Cupped rib

Effectively a more dramatic version of the hourglass silhouette, a cupped rib corset leaves lots of room for the ribs at both the front and sides, cupping in sharply to the waist just underneath. This allows for a large amount of waist reduction without causing rib discomfort.