For centuries, many men and women have been wearing corsets regularly. The style, the design, the colours and the fabric might have gone through an evolution over the centuries, but the elegance remains. But just like with modern bras, dresses and lingerie, no one would want their fashionable girdles to fall apart only after a few wears. With proper care, any modern corset can retain its splendour and last long like the historical ones. These are some of the practices one can incorporate into maintaining them.
1) Store It Immaculately to Preserve Its Structure and Colour
One of the most important things to keep in mind about storing this garment is not folding or rolling it up. It must be placed in a cool, dry place that is acid-free, lined with unbleached muslin, a pure cotton pillowcase, or a specially designed bag to be placed flatly. An alternative would be to hang it on a hanger using the laces, ensuring that the pressure or tension is distributed evenly along the length of the garment. Also, excess moisture can ruin the garment causing it to rust. In whichever way it is stored, one must ensure that there is no pressure put on the bones to prevent them from getting bent or distorted.
2) Develop an After-Use Routine
Wearing a corset for a long time is bound to make the user sweat a little, and this moisture would be attached to the garment as well. Therefore, after use, one must lay it out and air it on the lining side to ensure that any residual moisture evaporates, removing the must and odour. They must also ensure that it is not placed under the sun for too long to avoid fading.
3) Clean Stains and Odours Using Appropriate Techniques
A corset must not be washed frequently and never in a washing machine. The steel boning might get severely damaged if it is put in a washing machine. Anti-bacterial powder, talcum powder, cloth fresheners, or diluted spirit with ½ water mixture can work wonders in removing the odour. One must only remove the dust, stain residue and moisture after cleaning before putting them away in the closet. It might be difficult to deep clean this garment, especially when there are spots and stains. Gentle spot cleaning products must be tested on invisible areas of the clothing to check for damage and then used carefully to clean out the stain.
4) Hand-washing is the Best Option
When the techniques mentioned above do not completely clean the corset, they may be washed carefully by hand. It is recommended that buyers check with the manufacturers about suggestions for washing the garment, including the detergent that is to be used. Generally, to hand wash this garment, one must fill their bathtub with cold water and use a mild detergent to massage it to remove the stains. After ensuring that all the dirt has been removed, they must rinse it and lay it out to dry. One must ensure not to squeeze it dry, rather use a towel to remove excess water or hang it to let all the water drip off. Modern busks and spring steel boning are coated to prevent them from rusting. Keep dry cleaning as a secondary option. If hand-washing does not work, like for leather, it can be dry-cleaned by a professional experienced with tending to corsets.
Following these techniques would ensure that the quality and integrity of the corset is maintained for a long time.