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I have one. Just started. It's painful if you sit. But effects are instantaneous. But you do have to work out whilst in the trainer if you don't want your abs to go to shit. I currently go walking in mine for a bitz
Disclaimer: I have a corset not a waist trainer. It's stronger and is custom to me and I don't wear it, I can't be bothered to build up to wearing it all day, special occasions only i think. I've done loads of research on this.
They can't really make you permanently smaller.
There's the instant sucked in thing but your body will return to its normal shape once it's off.
They can kinda act like a gastric band as eating loads doesn't work well when your being squeezed.
Its really really hard to change your rib cage because you'd need a really strong corset and for it to be very tight/small and it takes years.
Also a problem it Victorians had was that if your wearing a tight corset a lot, your core muscles aren't holding you up any more and they weaken. You'd have to purposefully exercise these muscles to avoid it.