Once upon a time, corsets were all the rage. Beautiful, elegant, and cruel, their popularity is widely considered a leading cause of women fainting during the apex of their popularity. Cracked ribs, insufficient oxygen – all considered worth it, given the results. Once laced up tight, a corset provided a slim wait, and highlighted the bosom; young ladies who wore training corsets before the onset of puberty would find themselves with slim waists, and greatly improved posture, upon reaching adolescence.
Today, corsets have become a niche fashion accessory, and are hardly ever employed in their historical context. Simply put, we now have better tools, as waist trainers.