How To Easily Style A Corset

Corsets are back in a big way, taking us season-to-season with the help of layering pieces like cardigans, blazers, and tailored pants. So, why is the classic boned top so popular again? According to the New York Times, corsets are once again all the rage, harkening us back to the Victorian era with lace details, ruffles, satin, and a waist-defining silhouette. This all may be inspired by one very important Netflix show that almost everyone watched at the beginning of 2021: the pastel-colored, Regency-era "Bridgerton" (per Byrdie). Set under Queen Charlotte's reign, "Bridgerton" isn't just an addictive show because of Daphne and the Duke of Hasting's seriously-passionate romance — though it does make the series even more amazing. Viewers also couldn't get enough of the incredible fashion, particularly the corsets.

While we can blame the corset revival on "Bridgerton," the trend is also revved up by celebrities like Bella Hadid, Hailey Bieber, and Dua Lipa. Hadid loves layering her corsets with button-downs (via Vogue), and Bieber is all about black sheer boning with blazers on top (via Teen Vogue). As for Lipa, it's either a super-relaxed look with jeans and sneakers, or she's going full-on Palace of Versailles with a very-French, Marie Anotinette-inspired corset look in her music video for "Demeanor" (via Vogue). There's tons of inspiration lately for all things corsets — and we've got you covered with the absolute best ways to style them.

The trendiest way to wear a corset is with low-rise pants

The first way to style a corset is the most fashion-forward of the list and is typically worn by models like Kendall Jenner and Emily Ratajkowski (via Vogue). Corsets are seen as super glam, structured, and reminiscent of the time of Queen Elizabeth I. They're elegant tops worthy of a candlelit dinner or red carpet, and low-slung pants bring the look down a few notches to achieve a more laid-back look that's perfect for everyday wear.

Don't get us wrong, while low-rise pants can make corsets look more casual, that's not always the case. Take Italian designer Alice Pons' outfit for the "House of Gucci" premiere, which managed to make the style right for nighttime by using luxe textures. A blood-red, satin corset was paired with low-slung flare pants in tartan print with a similar color scheme. Red heels rounded out the look, which we loved. For an expensive-looking, perfect-for-night look, try going for a velvet or brocade corset, pairing it with flare or wide-leg low-rise pants in fabrics like suede or corduroy. This look toes the line between refinement and bohemian in the best way.

Conversely, we love how corsets are made casual with low-rise, wide-leg jeans, especially distressed styles with rips or an acid wash. If chill is your vibe, or you're wanting to wear your new corset to every occasion from your friend's house to a brewery, pair it with relaxed jeans, your favorite comfy sneakers, and a baguette bag. 

Layer corsets over white shirts for a subdued look

Another way to wear corsets that we absolutely adore is layered over a long-sleeve blouse, making the look much more subdued and even work-appropriate. You know that lacy, slightly sheer corset you recently bought that might work for clubbing or bar-hopping, but definitely wouldn't fly for restaurant gatherings with family? The definitive solution is simply layering your intricate corset over a casual, "works-with-everything," long-sleeve blouse. This outfit concept goes well with a crisp, white button-down, anything with voluminous sleeves, or a denim cowboy-inspired long-sleeve shirt.

You might think this styling will look bulky or frumpy, but the opposite is true. In fact, while button downs sometimes end up looking shapeless or square on the body instead waist-defining, wearing a corset on top of the blouse will define your figure. It isn't just waist-slimming — this look can add interesting textures to any outfit, even the most simple pairings like a white buttoned blouse, jeans, and flats for the office or school. A lace corset looks amazing with hints of your shirt coming through, while intricate embroidery puts a Victorian twist on a puff-sleeve blouse.

As per InStyle, this is one of the best ways to style a corset in 2021, switching up expectations by turning "undergarments" into overgarments. Another way the outlet suggests layering your new corset? Over a graphic band tee for rock 'n roll appeal.

A touch of leather glams it up

When many of us think of corsets, we think of frilly, "Bridgerton"-inspired fare, with lace, embroidery, satin tie-up ribbons, and maybe even some luxe velvet. Corsets are practically synonymous with pure femininity, at least in the Victorian era sense, and are often equated with delicate materials. That's why leather corsets are so interesting. They turn expectations on their head, blending the concept of über-femme corsets with the biker chic, "Rebel without a Cause" attitude of leather.

A leather corset is always a good idea, and works for more occasions than you would think. Whether you go for soft vegan leather or the real kind, this corset style adds edginess to any outfit, instantly making it much cooler. We love a black leather corset as a perfect closet basic to wear all the time, paired with contrasting printed pants and chunky sneakers, a leather miniskirt and stilettos for moonlit glam, or super-distressed jeans and pointy-toe heels. We also love a neon leather corset, whether you choose fluorescent hazard-sign orange, lime green, or fuchsia. A neon leather corset is amplified by an all-black leather suit, giving cool girl vibes that let everyone know you mean business. Pair the look with a contrasting, rainbow-bright bag, and colorful heels or Nike's to match.

InStyle also recommends pairing a classic lacy bustier with a leather jacket, a balanced look we absolutely adore.

Long live creamy neutrals

There are so many trends going on at the moment, it's hard to keep track of them all. Everything '90s fashion and Y2K style is still very much in. This includes butterfly clips, printed flare pants, platform loafers and sandals, visible lip liner, crochet crop tops, and anything that reminds you of an OG Mary-Kate and Ashley movie (here's looking at you, "Holiday in the Sun").

We also have impossibly-cozy cottagecore with its floral midi-dresses, the TikTok-approved e-girl aesthetic that is the early aughts' emo revival, and even the dark academia style that's pretty much based on Hermione's style from "Harry Potter." Still, one fashion trend has reigned supreme for years now: all things minimalism. Gaining prominence through street style fave Bottega Veneta, and on celebs like Rosie Huntington Whiteley, the minimalist aesthetic is all about creamy, neutral shades (via Elle). The aesthetic pairs these shades with classic shapes to create timeless pieces you can keep for the rest of your life. Of course, we're big fans of neutral, minimalist corsets for daytime to nighttime.

We love the idea of pairing a minimal, off-white corset with interesting, wide-leg pants in a neutral hue like khaki. Extra points for cool stirrups, any kind of cutout, or cargo pockets. Don't be scared to go full utilitarian by layering on a jacket with lots of chunky compartments, and a neutral crossbody bag. Conversely, a nude corset with clean, simple white trousers is a date night look that never fails, especially when paired with a sparkly jeweled choker.

Wear your corset over a blazer for an unexpected twist

Easily the most unexpected corset outfit option in the history of fashion involves layering an intricate corset over a jacket for a picture-perfect, extremely stylish look. Prepare for tons of compliments if you try this look on for size — it manages to be unique and chic all at once. A street-style favorite, tying up a corset over a blazer, tuxedo jacket, or a denim or leather jacket is the ultimate recipe for all the fashion points.

We love the idea of grabbing your classic, basic, wear-all-the-time blazer for this look, which prevents you from having to buy anything other than your corset. Keep it simple by using your go-to black blazer, or a blazer in simple shades like mocha, navy, cream, cloud, or dark charcoal gray. Once that's done, it's time for the fun part: getting the styling going. If your blazer is oversized to the point of almost working as a dress, go for an extra thick leather waist corset to cinch your figure and keep the jacket perfectly wrapped. Wear a matching skirt or shorts underneath, and bring in platforms, a boxy bag, and tights to complete the ensemble. As per The Zoe Report and Harper's Bazaar, this outfit idea is the best for colder winter days, since you can finally add some shape to your boxy chilly-weather jacket.