Monday, December 8, 2008

That Corselette Is Ruining Your Figure

I wrote earlier that I'd prefer an old-fashioned undergarment to the ace-bandage shorts that are Spanx. But what I find charming, some deem detrimental. The garment Lilyan refers to below must be a corselette, still terribly popular well into the 1950s:

"No garment has done more to destroy the American woman's figure than the combination corset and brassiere one. No one wearing such a garment can attain the correct standing position because of the downward pull of the suspended garters. The wearer has no shape, no waistline, flabby, protruding hips, forward shoulders, and will find that after wearing the garment for a while that abdominal muscles have sagged thus resulting in constipation and other disordered, Throw this garment away immediately and purchase a step-in girdle.
Let me explain this a different way. You will agree that in wearing this garment you wore the front garters short and the back and side garters long. Why did you do this? Because if you didn't wear the back garters long you would never have been able to sit down. Did you ever stop to think what this would do to your figure? Every fat women has large hips entirely due to the lack of this knowledge. In other words you protrude your hips which naturally give you large hips."

--Lilyan Malmstead, What Everyone Wants to Know (1928)