How to Get an Hourglass Figure

One of the best things about being a woman is having CURVES galore!

But maybe you’re wondering …

It is really possible to look like an hourglass if you’re built like a rectangle or an apple (as most transgender women are)?

The answer is YES!

Keep reading to learn how to slim your waist and enhance your hips to achieve an hourglass shape:

1. Try corset training

If you’ve never worn a corset before, you’re in for a treat. A corset can take up to 6” off your waist and make you look and feel ultra feminine.

A corset can even be used for permanent (or at least semi-permanent) waist size reduction. Corset training isn’t fast or easy, but it can work wonders when combined with a proper diet and exercise.

Check out to learn more about corset training. They offer corsets, training materials, and even a 3-month waist training coaching program.

2. Wear a waist cincher

As lovely as corsets are, they aren’t always practical. A big drawback is that corsets can look stiff and bulky under most clothes.

Waist cinchers, on the other hand, are designed to be worn under clothing. A waist cincher can take 1-4 inches off your waist while still allowing you to move and breath easily.

Here are 3 top-reviewed waist cinchers available in small to extra-large sizes.

Flexees Instant Slimmer WaistnipperSqueem Magical Lingerie Waist CincherRago Waist Cincher – Style 821

3. Improve your posture

Most of us have poor posture from being slumped over computers all day. Good posture can make you look 10 pounds lighter around the middle, so pay attention to the way you sit and stand. Think: stomach in, chest lifted, and shoulders back.

Even better – put on your waist cincher! A waist cincher improves your posture by forcing you to keep your tummy in and your spine straight.

4. Try the vacuum pose

Traditional exercises like crunches and sit-ups can overdevelop your abs and increase the size of your waist. Have you ever noticed that many modern bodybuilders have bulging abdomens? Compare this to the wasp-waist look of old school bodybuilders like Arnold Schwarzenegger or Jack Lalanne.

You obviously don’t want to look like “The Terminator”, but these classic bodybuilders were onto something. Their secret was the “vacuum pose”.

The vacuum pose is an exercise that tones the transverse abdominis. The transverse abdominis is the innermost ab muscle, which supports your posture and helps hold your stomach in. Everyday crunches don’t target this muscle.

The vacuum pose can take 2-4 inches off your waist, so it’s definitely worth a try. (I personally lost 1 inch off my waist after vacuum posing for 2 weeks!) Here’s how to do it:

  1. Exhale all the air from your lungs.
  2. Expand your chest and suck in your stomach as much as possible. Imagine trying to touch your belly button to your spine.
  3. Hold this pose for 5-15 seconds and then relax.
  4. Repeat for 3-5 minutes.

The vacuum pose should be done on an empty stomach and can be done standing, sitting, or on your hands and knees. Check out this article to learn more about the vacuum pose.

5. Enhance your hips

A small waist is only half of the equation. Your hips should appear approximately 10 inches larger than your waist for true hourglass proportions.

Here are some tips for enhancing your hips:

  • Wear padded panties. Classic Curves carries the best hip and butt enhancers for crossdressers and transgender women. You can also find a big selection of removable hip and butt pads on
  • Go for skirts and dresses with gathered waistlines. Gathers are the easiest way add inches to your lower body and create the illusion of hips.
  • Look for peplum styles. A peplum is a ruffle or overskirt attached to the waistline of a top, dress, or skirt. Besides adding fullness to the hips, the peplum is a very fashion-forward look.
Padded pantyGathered waistPeplum

I hope this gave you some new ideas for getting the CURVES you desire. I’d love to see your results, so please share your photos below – along with any other waist or hip shaping tips you might have!


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  1. hey I just started talking to my dr about begining my transtition and she’s worried about complications through my transition I’m more worried that my body being a terrible rectangle shape from denieing my self for many years and body building and sports instead

  2. Hi, I’m asking for advice on getting a slightly more feminine profile. Not super fem, as that isn’t me, but some.

    I’m mtf and I am pre everything. I have a 30 inch waist and little body fat. I’ve let some arm and shoulder muscle go and worked on building legs. Hormones might help when they kick in later, but for now I’m stuck with this T shaped frame.

    Thanks for any ideas.

    • How did you lose arm and shoulder muscle? I don’t have big muscles but my arms are far from feminine with the muscles i do have

  3. Dear Lucille,

    I have had numerous examples of shapewear and waist cinchers, but none can compare to a corset in my opinion.

    When I first made the decision to resume dressing en femme after years of denying myself, as part of my new image I went to an adult store and purchased a corset. To say the experience of wearing that corset was heavenly would be the ultimate understatement.

    Since that time I have purchased numerous tight-lacing corsets from Orchid Corset and have loved every one of them. The corsets not only aid in helping to provide a feminine hourglass figure but help to give me confidence in my female appearance.

    A side benefit is that the corset helps to provide back support and improve my posture. For these reasons alone I wish I could wear my corsets 24/7.

  4. Hi Lucile, I was wondering if you’ve heard about the HRT called Progynova or Estradiol Valerate and if you have, what can you tell me about it. I tried it for 17 days and was OK except for the 18th day. Something made me very sick and don’t know if I should continue taking it. Thank you, Tess Isabel

    • Hi Tess,

      Love from the UK. You want to be very careful with hormones. It is not as simple as to take estradiol valerate and nothing else. My endocrinologist told me that the male body responds to elevated estrogen by increasing testosterone levels. You might grow breasts but they will be hairy ones and your beard will grow all the stronger. There are only two ways to lower your testosterone levels in a big way, physical castration or chemical castration, both of them are permanent! If you start down the hormone route after 3-6 months there is no way back. If you think you may want to have a child in the future you will have to have a few sperm samples frozen, I don’t know about else where but in the UK this is about £400 ($550) for every 3 years of storage.
      When I transitioned I took the following,

      6-8mg Estradiol valerate, AM.
      5mg Finasteride, AM.
      200mg Spironolactone, 100mg AM, 100mg PM.
      10mg Progestin, AM for 10 days then none for 18 days. **

      ** This is called progestin cycling and mimics a females natural cycle, even down to the premenstrual tension, which was a real shock to me, and everyone around me at the time.

      If you go ahead with this you need to do the following,

      Learn how to spot the symptoms of deep vein thrombosis, embolisms and strokes.

      You need to alter your diet, these hormones will try to make your body fat percentage go from 15-25% (male) to 20-40% (female). they also remove your male upper body muscle mass.

      You will need to start an exercise program, stick to cardivascular and toning exercises.

      You need to have your liver function tested every 4-8 weeks. All medication taken orally is processed through the liver and it can take its toll. so ease up on the drinking.

      I also started drinking 4 pints (2 Liters) of water a day and increased my intake of nascent iodine. This is essential for your endocrine system to work at its best.

      Once you develop breasts learn how to examine them for abnormalities, taking high dose hormones increase the risk of breast cancer.

      And lastly, NEVER try to speed up the process by increasing the dosage, you will end up in a mental hospital or dead!!

      You take care Tess, If you want any more advise please contact me here.

      Love to You and all the Girls here.

      Heather Anne Exley, 43, UK.

      Estradiol valerate – estrogen type hormone.
      Finasteride – anti androgen, stops the production of testosterone and dihydrotestosterone.
      Spironolactone – anti androgen, as above but it makes your testes shrink, after four months mine were the size of kidney beans, sometimes I couldn’t even find them without a good rummage around.
      Progestin – not essential but many endocrinologist who work in the gender reassignment field feel that you get a more feminine appearance in the long run.

    • Hi Tess,

      This is Jennie, Lucille’s Director of Customer Care.

      I would highly recommend that you consult with your health care provider first to rule out any complications.

  5. I am a bit surprised nobody mentioned waist clincher belts. I bought one on eBay for £4 (about 6 dollars) and I think it looks great, can instantly reduce waist by 4 inches, and looks quite a nice fashion accessory.

    Agreed, it may not be as good for permanent waist size reduction as a corset, but at least u can breath!

    I do have a couple of corsets’ but in both cases the lace-up back shows through clothes.

    I also bought a (admittedly cheap) waist clincher and it was useless.

    I also wear firm control pants which help.

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