Venus Unveiled is bringing a new contender to our team: the chest binder! Chest binding is a wonderful tool for chest compression, acting like a super sports bra. Currently, there isn’t a single store within 400 miles that sells binders in store (the closest is in Chicago) so we’re very excited to bring them into our Minneapolis location. Because this is such a new and exciting item, we’ve put together a FAQ for you (and us!) to better understand their use.
“How do binders work?”
Very simply, a chest binder is an effective way to minimize the appearance of breasts. A binder is a t-shirt or vest style top that presses the breasts flat against the chest, evenly distributing the tissue. They are generally made of a spandex-like material—similar to Spanx shapewear. They work much like a corset or girdle in the way that they can shape the body; however, unlike other forms of shapewear, binders make the body look less feminine and are made of a more breathable material that can be worn for longer periods of time without fatigue or pain. If your binder fits appropriately, you can move and even eat comfortably!
“Who are binders for?”
Chest binders can be used for everything from fun activities like cosplay, burlesque, and drag to minimizing body dysmorphia for trans and non-binary folks! Having binders available to try on provides a safe and convenient way to find the proper size and cut for every body type.
“What’s special about your binders?”
We carry Underworks binders—a Florida based company that has been making shapewear and compression garments since 1997. They pride themselves on their commitment to quality, healthy garments and are considered one of the best options available.
“But why buy a binder when I can bind myself at home?”
Self-binding, although less-expensive, can be very unsafe. Using products like Ace bandages, tape, or even cheap binders can lead to several health concerns such as bruised or broken ribs, respiratory problems, and damage to breast tissue from lack of blood flow.
“What are the do’s and don’ts for binders?”
Make sure your binder fits! The best rule of thumb is if it hurts, it doesn’t fit. Binders can be uncomfortable while they’re being broken in, but any sharp pains are your body’s way of saying “Stop!”
Binders can be worn daily, but don’t sleep in them! Generally, you should break in a new binder in 4-hour increments; 8-10 hours is the longest you should wear your binder at a time. Letting your chest relax is good for breast and lung health.
Your binder will stretch with time. Some styles, like the Underworks styles we carry, slide over your head and can feel loose from stretching over your shoulders. However, once on, the binder will tighten up gradually. Your binder will lose elasticity with wear and, just like any garment, will need to be replaced.
Proper fit is K-E-Y. You can refer to the size chart below to get an idea, but trying on your binder is the best option!