A few years ago, my parter introduced me to a website called Romantasy. I looked around and admired the corsets, but I didn’t become aware of her book ‘Corset Magic – A fun guide to trim your waist and figure‘ until Lucy of Lucy’s corsetry mentioned it in one of her many YouTube videos.
The book (which I purchased online as a PDF) was written by Ann Grogan, also the woman behind Romantasy. There is no doubt in my mind that she is one of the most knowledgable people in the corset world when it comes to waist training.
Her book is split into the following sections:
- Setting the Stage for Corset Magic
- “The Corset Question” Answered: Why Corsets Don’t Hurt
- How Corsets Help You Lose Waistline Inches or Weight
- The Perfect Style Corset For Waist Training
- The Six Elements of An Effective Waist-Training Program
- Non-Corset-Friendly Eating Habits: The Problems
- Corset-Friendly Eating Habits: The Solutions
- Corset-Friendly Exercise Habits
- What Goes Where When You Corset
- How Your Body Could Be Affected by Moderate Waist Training
- Problems You Might Encounter and How To Solve Them
- How To Maintain Your Newfound Waistline
- The Difference Between Tight-lacing and Moderate Lacing
- Real Men Eat Quiche . . . and Wear Corsets!
As you can see, all the essential aspects (in my opinion) required for successful waist training are covered, such as selecting the correct corset, changing eating habits, exercises to do while training, and an explanation of how the body adapts to being corseted, to name but a few.
There are some aspects of the book that I really enjoyed, and some others that I think could be further improved. Here is my review.
What I loved
This book is truly a wealth of information on the topic of both corsetry generally, and on the little understood subject of waist training.
Ann makes the practice of waist training a very personable one, with many personal anecdotes of her own successes and failures and her subsequent learnings, she also states examples from her many customers which I feel is very encouraging for prospective waist trainers.
The author is very aware that different people have various needs, budgets, and lifestyles, and in each section she tries to cater for all of those people, stating different techniques and options.
I very much enjoyed reading about the experiences of genetic males who have chosen to waist train, and I really appreciate the fact that Ann is so encouraging of these people who wish to pursue this path, regardless of whether they are corseting for weight loss or cross-dressing reasons. In my opinion, everyone should be included in the world of foundations and corsetry, and I don’t care who they are or what they look like, so this aspect of the book is very much in line with my values.
I, like many corset wearers have encountered negative comments from people who believe that corsets are extremely harmful to the body. Ann goes through points that are made by sceptics, such as “where does it all go?” (referring to organ and body fat displacement) and accusations of rib removal, and gives a logical explanation to all of them, with no hint of emotion. She has also incorporated advice from nutritionists and doctors, which is incredibly important in the world of corsetry, to back up the facts.
‘Corset Magic’ really helped me to put into perspective the priorities when waist training. I will be starting my own waist training journey in the coming weeks, and reading this text has reinforced the fact that I don’t need to wear a corset 24/7 regardless, but that I can in fact have days off, but more importantly that I must listen to my body. If my skin starts to itch, or my body aches for any reason, I can simply remove the corset, let my body rest and then resume training when I am ready. It is vital to understand that training is not as simple as putting on a corset, it is a complete change of lifestyle. A waist trainer not only trains the body, but trains their mind first and foremost.
What I disliked
Despite enjoying hearing about Ann’s customer experiences, I feel like it would be more effective to add a section to the book that focuses on case studies of individuals. This would give the reader a full view of how her customers progressed, which issues they encountered and what went well for them, as well as improving the flow of the book.
The contents jump around quite a bit, and topics are sometimes repeated throughout the various chapters. I personally would have preferred for all the information from each topic to have been comprehensively covered in one location only.
Throughout the book, I changed my mind several times as to whether ‘Corset Magic’ was a reference book, or a story about waist training. As previously mentioned, a ‘case studies’ section would have greatly benefitted the book by removing the personal stories from the fact based chapters. I will certainly read this book again as there is so much useful information, however I am not looking forward to trying to locate the information that I require. I would like to see key information lifted out of the text in what I call highlight boxes… I don’t know what the real term is, but I am referring to boxes on the side of the page with key information cited or listed to bring it to the attention of the reader. Another option would be to summarise each chapter or section before moving on to the next.
Overall I think this book is a very important text for anyone considering waist training. Lucy mentioned in her video review of ‘Corset Magic’ that despite the cost of the book being quite high ($50 USD), the information contained within the book is well worth investing in for the sole reason that it is better to invest $50 into a book and then decide that waist training is not for you, rather than spending hundreds of dollars on a custom made corset without being armed with the correct information, and then quitting.
On a personal note, I would like to say thank you to Ann for being an incredibly kind and supportive woman, and I hope that this review has been constructive.
If you are interested in reading ‘Corset Magic’, please click here to be redirected to the Romantasy website.