Hourglass trainers are a popular method of instantly appearing slimmer and also aid you in taking off a few inches in the process. It is a type of high compression shapewear that constricts your midsection to keep it at a certain size for long periods of time. Through regular use, your waistline will eventually adapt and reduce in waist size. This result is especially seen in the classic waist trainer with an inner bone structure.
For most beginners, the thought of trying one on may seem overwhelming, painful, and scary. Still others think that tummy belts were only made for parties or as an accessory at the gym.
In reality, there are now countless types of waist trainer with different styles, materials, and levels of compression to cater to any occasion and outfit. There are even some made for daily wear!
What is a waist trainer usually made of?
Waist trainers now come in many types of materials and styles so you can better decide which is best for your specific occasion.
Satin. Some trainers have a bodice made of smooth satin which is perfect for when your outfit is textured or made of rough material. The smooth fabric allows your outerwear to naturally drape over without any obstructions or signs of an undergarment.
Mesh. Some trainers have a bodice made of lightweight mesh, which is perfect for when your outfit consists of multiple layers or on extra hot summer days. This is most beneficial when your skin needs extra breathing room and your body needs to keep cool.
Cotton. Some trainers have a bodice made of soft cotton, which is perfect for when you are still easing into your training routine or on days when you want to prioritize comfort.
Latex. A lot of trainers have a bodice made of latex because it is the most durable, comfortable, and firm material that offers a high level of compression. With regular use, it will eventually feel like a second skin.
Neoprene. Some trainers have a bodice made of flexible neoprene, which is perfect for when you are at the gym or working out. This thermal material helps you sweat and get rid of excess water weight while doing rigorous activities, helping you burn more calories in the process.
What sets a traditional tummy belt apart from the modern ones is an inner bone structure that is used hold the trainer’s shape and provide extra compression. This structure, typically made of steel or plastic, slowly molds to the natural form of the wearer’s midsection, offering a healthier and more comfortable experience. The undergarment is then cinched at the back or front with lace, Velcro, a zipper, or metal hook and eye closures, to create that sought after hourglass curve.
How can you put one on?
A typical waist trainer uses metal hook and eye closures. If yours is the same, close the bottom hook around the narrowest part of your midsection first then slowly pull the trainer down as you continue.
If your trainer uses a zipper, simply hold it down as you slowly zip up, like you would any body hugging dress or pair of jeans. For cinchers utilizing lace or Velcro, first adjust it to your comfort level and slowly tighten as you go.
For those just starting out with their core training, it is ideal for your undergarment to fit comfortably at its loosest setting – nothing too tight or too loose right off the bat.
For how long should you wear it?
It is expected to feel a little uncomfortable and stiff at first, but just like anything that takes some getting used to, it will be easier with time and practice.
Give your body a little while to get used to the compression and also for the trainer to mold itself to your natural form. A good place to start is no more than two consecutive hours each day. Once you feel ready, you can slowly add more time to your daily routine, perhaps in increments of one hour would work fine – whatever feels right for you and your body. You can also practice by splitting up your hours per day, such as 2 hours in the morning and 2 in the afternoon.
Some even prefer to train their midsection at night. This does not work for everyone but if you feel comfortable enough to sleep with it on, you can get your daily core training hours checked off much easier compared to wearing it while going about your day to day activities. For more info on how long your should wear a tummy belt check out our blog post here.
How should you wear it in different situations?
Parties, Reunions, and Special Occasions. Corsets are perfect for instantly looking slimmer and more toned, ideal for when you want to look your best at a special event. Depending on how trained your midsection already is, go for a trainer you can personally last a good amount of time in comfortably. The best material would be a latex trainer as they provide the best compression and body-hugging benefits.
Other types of compression undergarments for events include lightweight tank tops and full-length body shapewear. Depending on the style of your outfit, they help create a smoother overall look.
Gym and Household Chores. A thermal neoprene waist trainer helps keep heat in and take out excess water weight. This can help you lose extra calories at the gym or during activities like household chores and a full day of errands.
Every day. Contrary to popular belief, you do not need a special event or activity to wear a waist trainer. Clocking in the needed hours to help your midsection adapt to the restrictive environment and lose a few inches is essential to the whole training process. At the same time, trainers help with keeping your posture upright and your back strong.
Any material you are most comfortable in could work in this situation. It is also best to have various types or more than one trainer so you can alternate between them and also stay on top of hygiene.
Overnight. If you decide that training your midriff at night is better for you, try a seamless style without any closures, this will adapt to your form more and feel comfortable as you sleep.
What should your intake be like?
Because your midsection will be compressed, it will be physically difficult to eat in large portions. This is another way people lose weight through training: forced portion control and feeling full with smaller intakes. Because of this, make sure to fill your meals with protein and fiber to remain full for longer periods of time. It is also best to load up on fruits and vegetables to keep your energy levels high and feel great throughout your day.
Many people find that eating five to six smaller meals a day instead of the usual three large meals is a great balance to still get in a healthy amount of calories without feeling too stuffed.
Waist training will also have you sweating more, meaning more chances of getting dehydrated if you do not regularly drink enough water. Keep hydrated throughout your day, especially if you lead an active lifestyle and workout.
Hourglass stocks some of the best waist trainers in Australia, check some of them out below.