The corset, once the preserve of women as far back as the 16th century, is back – and this time, its reincarnation is decidedly more modern
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Forget what you know about super-tight lacing and whalebone supports: today, the corset is less about constraint and more about liberation, a reclaiming of the provocative aesthetic we’ve all had to pack away during months of lockdown. We’re going out again, and the corset is the perfect fashion partner for a night on the town.
Of course, this isn’t the first time corsets have captured the modern imagination. Who could forget Madonna’s iconic collaboration with Jean Paul Gaultier in 1990, or when she launched her Madame X tour some 30 years later in another beautiful piece? Or the corseted dresses made famous by Vivienne Westwood, also in the 1990s?
This time around, we’ve been influenced by the hit Netflix series Bridgerton which, for all its traditional values (the show is set in Regency-era England) portrays a mesmerisingly alluring life of fantastical parties, romance, sex and adventure. After over 18 months of staying inside thanks to the pandemic, who wouldn’t want to get back to going out?
This time around, the corset has been repurposed as outerwear. Singer Olivia Rodrigo wore a white corset top with boning in her good 4 u music video, Rihanna wore a brown snakeskin corset with A$AP Rocky in the Bronx and Billie Eilish has been posing on Instagram in a design by Miaou, an up-and-coming brand also popular with the likes of Bella Hadid, Kim Kardashian and Paloma Elsesser.
If you want to jump on the corset trend, we’ve rounded up the best options to buy now: