Shapewear — body-conscious undergarments designed to cover up the lumps and bumps of being a human-person — might be bad for your health, says the Huffington Post. Because while the garments can kind of make it look like you don’t have gross things like fat or skin or internal organs, they cannot actually alter your body structure — and by compressing you, doctors say, Spanx and the like can cause blood clots, stomach issues, and infections. Probably your beige nylon neo-corset won’t kill you, but it definitely might give you gas.
Other things it might give you: acid reflux and heartburn (in people already prone to acid reflux and heartburn), erosive esophagitis, bloating, abdominal discomfort, numbness and leg pain, yeast infections, and bacterial infections. Also, embarrassment forever, because the pressure on your bladder can make you pee yourself, which sort of undercuts the whole point of Spanx in the first place.
Not that hard-core Spanx lovers, red carpet actresses, and people who bought dresses kind of optimistically that one time are necessarily doomed: when worn in moderation, the HuffPo’s medical team says shapewear is totally fine. Don’t wear it every day (see above) or for hours and hours (see above), but for “an evening or a special occasion,” doctors say, it shouldn’t be an issue. If it is an issue, doctors helpfully suggest you not wear them.