For men you now have “the Mirdle”, though we couldn’t find it available in any of the Kilkenny stores. So you have to measure yourself up and order it over the Internet, Ebay and Etsy being good places to search. There’s “Secrets in Lace” website with gorgeous models in girdles, suspenders and nylons too.
Women mostly wear them today to fit into their wedding or bridesmaid’s dresses as they are still essential for a smooth slim figure on the big day.
There’s for and against girdles on the health issue of wearing them constantly. Proponents say that they take the stress off the heart of holding up bellies and bottoms and that they hold vital organs back in their natural places.
There’s also the successor to the girdle known as Spanx today, though they’re flimsy and not any good to flatten a good country Irish belly or a transom of a bottom. The much maligned girdle is a blessing on the wedding day, especially for an over-endowed bride.
Once they were worn all day every day. We asked a couple of elderly ladies and they said that after several months of daily wear that if you started young you’d never really feel them bothering you again when you got used to them. One woman laughed as she remarked, “Fellows got a surprise as they tried to pinch my bottom, I was known as The Dead End Kid. ”
Another lady told us that she actually missed her girdle when it was off. “I actually feel all loose, even a bit naked, without a girdle”, she said.
Another said she wouldn’t go outside the door without a girdle. She swore it took a couple of inches off her waist and that the restriction in moving, especially bending, was worth it.