Netflix reportedly banned corsets from costume departments after several period show actors, such as Bridgerton, complained about discomfort.
The corset has been a staple of the period genre for decades. However, its effects of painful and restrictive movement and breathing due to its waist-clinching fit have been a struggle for actors who wear it.
As a result of complaints about both short- and long-term ‘damage’ from wearing corsets on set for hours on end, Bridgerton producers have informed the cast members that they will no longer be required to wear them on set.
According to The Sun: “There were health and safety concerns about keeping women in a pinching corset for weeks at a time. Many stars have reported bruising and even breathing problems.”
The Sun source added that it “is not great optics” to depict a cinched waist and a potentially unobtainable body image through the show characters due to the corset.
“It may well have been reflective of the time, but broadcasters and streamers want to be seen as progressive,” the source added. “It’s a big moment in the history of the period drama.”
Bridgerton star Simone Ashley, who plays Kate Sharma, shared her challenges fitting into the Regency-era wardrobe while filming the second season. The star told Glamour she needed help fitting into her costumes as she couldn’t bend over to put on her shows due to the waist-cinching contraption.
“On my first day, I was like, ‘OK, first day as a leading lady, got to eat lots of food, be really energised,'” the actor shared. “So, I had this massive portion of salmon and that’s when I needed to be sick, basically because I was wearing the corset. “
She added: “I realised when you wear the corset, you just don’t eat. It changes your body. I had a smaller waist very momentarily. Then the minute you stop wearing it, you’re just back to how your body is. I had a lot of pain with the corset, too, I think I tore my shoulder at one point!”
Bridgerton season three is expected to have a mid-2023 release.