Looking for a new belt? In this post, we’ll share our thoughts on the best belts that men can buy in 2021.
When it comes to looking our best, men don’t have many accessories to call upon for a style boost. Watches, shoes, sunglasses, and maybe a bracelet are about all we have to choose from. But there’s one item we’re overlooking: belts.
Aside from shoes, belts are the oldest and most useful accessory a man can wear. They add a bit of style, promote a cohesive (or contrasting) look, and, most importantly, they keep your pants up.
But, which of the best men’s belts should you wear? Which style should you go with? How do you choose one? Those are all great questions, and this article will help clear them up.
Table of Contents
Short on time? Here are our top three picks for the best belts for men you can buy right now:
Read on for more info and the complete list…
The Best Styles of Belts for Men
The first thing that you need to understand when it comes to the best men’s belts is that they come in different styles. Each of those styles has its own appropriate time, place, or way you should wear it, so it’s worth understanding the differences.
Leather Dress Belts
When it comes to dressing up, leather dress belts are the way to go. Leather dress belts are rather simple in design, with solid colors, glossy sheens, and smooth textures.
They usually come in black, brown, or tan, and they feature metal buckles, often in a polished silver or gold. And, most importantly, they’re thin.
That’s right; dress belts are thin. The straps are under 1.5 inches wide. You might find a belt that fits all the other criteria (solid, glossy, and smooth), but if it’s over 1.5 inches, it’s a casual belt.
Whether you’re wearing a business suit or a pair of dress slacks and a sweater, a leather dress belt that matches your shoes will have you looking good.
Casual Leather Belts
For jeans, chinos, and other laid-back looks, you might want to go with a casual leather belt. These belts can be between 1.25 to 2 inches thick, most often landing around 1.5 inches. They also come in a few designs.
You can find them in plain straps with rivets instead of stitching, tooled straps with carved designs, suede, and exotic leathers like crocodile and ostrich. You can even find them in loud colors intended to make a statement.
When it comes to buckles and casual leather belts, the sky is the limit. You’ll find standard metal buckles with subdued finishes, as well as large rodeo-style belt buckles. You can even find bright, high-polished designer belts with over-the-top logos on the buckles—consider staying away from those.
If you aren’t sure which casual leather belt style to go with, stick with the basics: black, brown, or tan leather with a plain buckle. This classic work belt style will look great with a pair of jeans and some rugged boots.
Leather Braided Belts
For another leather option that isn’t dressy, but is a step above casual, check out a leather braided belt. These belts feature a weaved pattern of leather lacing and traditional buckles. The woven lacing allows you to place the buckle at any point throughout the belt.
These belts look great with chinos and trousers, as well as shorts paired with driving moccasins or boat shoes. You can even pair them with jeans and a sport coat, if that’s your style.
D-ring belts are a super casual, fun, laid-back approach to belts. This style features two rings shaped like capital Ds that function as a buckle. Simply slide the end of the belt through both Ds, then double it back between the two rings and cinch them down.
The friction between the rings will hold the belt in place without a need for a traditional buckle.
These belts come in a variety of materials, but fabrics like canvas are the most popular. They go best with summer-centric casual styles.
If you’re looking for another casual belt option, a woven belt might make a good choice. Manufacturers weave materials like cotton, nylon, and other cord-like materials to create fun patterns and colors, but you can also find them in subdued styles.
Some woven belts have specific adjustment holes, while others allow you to place the buckle anywhere throughout the belt.
A Word About Micro-Adjustability
While I spoke briefly about the typical buckles you’ll find on the different belt styles, there is one option I haven’t mentioned: micro-adjustable. These belts don’t use adjustment holes. Instead, they have ratcheting belt buckles that snap into grooves on the backside of the belt.
In most cases, this provides you with adjustments every quarter of an inch, which is four times more adjustment than you’ll get from a traditional belt.
The 16 Best Men’s Belts to Try in 2021
Now that you have a better foundation and understanding of the different types of men’s belts, you’re ready to take a look at some of the most popular options that guys like you wear and trust.
Choosing a few belts off this list will ensure you’re taking advantage of what this awesome accessory has to offer your style.
Best Leather Dress Belts for Men
If you’re putting on a suit or dressing up a pair of slacks, these are the belts to have.
Florsheim 32mm Italian Full Grain Leather Belt
Looking great doesn’t have to break the bank, and this leather belt from Florsheim proves it. This belt features full-grain Italian leather, which is a pretty good deal at this price point.
At 32mm wide (roughly 1.25 inches), it’s the perfect size for a dress belt. It comes in black, brown, and cognac tan color, with a traditional polished silver buckle. These color combinations are perfect for matching with most common dress shoes.
Allen Edmonds Manistee Dress Belt
If you’re in the market for a premium dress belt option, the Manistee Dress Belt from Allen Edmonds will certainly garner some well-deserved attention.
This handsome belt measures just under 1.5 inches wide and features a classy Brogue pattern—perfect for matching with shoes in the same style.
Allen Edmonds uses vegetable-tanned leather, and it comes in five colors; coffee, dark chili, black, walnut, and oxblood. Each color matches nicely with a traditional silver belt buckle, allowing you to pair it with stainless or silver watches, cufflinks, or rings.
Best Casual Leather Belt
If your style leans more casual or smart-casual, you’ll need a great leather belt to set off your style. Either of the following options can do the trick.
Main Street Forge Journeyman Leather Belt
When it comes to casual leather belts, you can’t go wrong with a traditional work-style belt, and the Journeyman from Main Street Forge is just the ticket.
This belt features a standard 1.5-inch wide strap of full-grain leather, as well as a traditional silver buckle, and plenty of holes for adjustment. The Journeyman comes in black and brown, so you should be able to match it with a pair of service boots for a rugged look.
Tanner Goods Classic Belt
Tanner Goods makes some top-notch casual leather goods, and the Classic Belt is a great example. This 1.25-inch wide belt might seem a bit thin, but the rugged buckle and durable full-grain English Bridle leather exude work belt style.
One of the best aspects of the Classic Belt from Tanner Goods is that it comes in two buckle finishes and several colors.
You can choose from silver or brass buckles, as well as leather in colors like cognac, black, natural, saddle tan, or navy blue, offering a unique casual look in several combinations.
Best Braided Leather Belt
If you want a belt that isn’t dressy but offers a bit more style and texture than a traditional-style belt, check out these braided options.
Dockers Braided Leather Belt
The Braided Leather Belt from Dockers can give you that premium look at an affordable price. This belt features a blend of leather and polyester, which results in a product that feels like leather, but costs the consumer a bit less in the end.
This belt features a traditional buckle in both copper and silver, and it has adjustment holes every quarter of an inch. It’s available in several colors, including tan, black, dark brown, and navy.
Polo Ralph Lauren Braided Leather Belt
If you don’t mind spending a little bit more cash for a braided leather belt, you can get the real deal from Polo Ralph Lauren. The vegetable-tanned leather construction makes it durable but will also take on its own patina for a rich, worn look over time.
You’re not going to get any color or buckle options with this braided leather belt, however. Polo Ralph Lauren only offers it with a silver buckle on dark brown leather.
Best Braided Fabric Belt
For an ultra-casual and laid-back look, it’s hard to beat a braided fabric leather belt. They’re fun, easy to clean, and offer a different texture from a leather strap.
The Tie Bar
There are lots of cheap braided fabric belts on the market, but it’s hard to find one that offers quality and durability. If that’s what you‘re looking for, the braided belt from The Tie Bar is worth checking out.
It features an elasticated woven fabric with leather trim and a traditional silver buckle, making it both comfortable and good looking.
There are a couple of color choices available, including khaki, classic navy, true navy, and just plain navy. Each of the navies has a slightly different hue, allowing you to choose the one that fits your style the best.
Bonobos Clubhouse Stretch Belt
For a little bit more of an investment, check out Bonobos Clubhouse Stretch Belt. This woven-style belt uses a blend of polypropylene and latex, allowing it to stretch comfortably while also being lightweight and resistant to stains.
The Clubhouse Stretch belt features a standard silver buckle and it comes in three colors, including tobacco brown, a navy and burgundy weave, and navy brown. Each variation features a leather keeper and end tab.
Best Canvas/Nylon Belt
If you need a rugged belt to take on your adventures, or simply a cool and casual way to hold up your pants, a canvas or nylon belt might be the ideal option.
Columbia Military Web Belt
It’s hard to go wrong with a basic canvas or nylon belt. The Military Web Belt from Columbia offers a rugged canvas belt look with a very modest price tag. This belt features a military-style buckle that allows you to dial in the perfect fit.
The cotton canvas web strap measures 1.5 inches wide as well, making it a great casual belt.
It comes in plenty of color options as well. You’ll have a choice between black, beige, blue, brown, charcoal, green, ivory, khaki, light blue, navy, olive, and red.
If you prefer your canvas or nylon belt to appear a bit more grown-up and less tactical, L.L. Bean’s comfort waist belt might be worth a look. This belt features a 1.5-inch wide nylon web, leather accents, and a traditional brass-finish buckle.
It has some built-in stretch, so you should be able to find a comfortable fit. You’ll have a choice of the basic colors, including black, brown, navy, and khaki.
Best D-Ring Belt
If you’re struggling to find the perfect belt to pair with a casual summer outfit, don’t overlook the D-ring belt. This classic belt style is comfortable and looks great.
Maikun Canvas D-Ring Belt
When it comes to blending options with affordability, you’ll have to check out Maikun’s Canvas D-Ring Belt. For less than two cups of coffee, you get a 1.5-inch wide canvas strap with a double D-ring buckle closure.
Maikun offers both black and silver D-rings, and you’ll have a choice between 19 different strap colors.
Mountain Khakis Leather D-Ring Belt
High-quality leather D-ring belts can be challenging to find, but when it’s coming from a trusted company like Mountain Khakis, you know it’ll get the job done. In fact, the tail end of this belt features a reversed strap to hide the backside of the leather, creating a smooth, consistent look.
This belt features a 1.5 vegetable-tanned leather strap and two antique nickel D-rings, offering a unique look that stands out against other D-ring options.
Best Embroidered Belt
If you really want your belt to stand out, going with an embroidered strap might be the right move for you. These belts feature a limitless amount of designs and colors, so you should find something to make the statement you’re after.
While it really depends on the seller, there are a lot of great deals available on Etsy. From western-style embroidery to golf belts, there’s something for just about any interest or style.
It’s important to understand that many of the more expensive belts are hand-woven, so you’re paying for the craftsmanship.
If you want to make an impression on the golf course or at the barbecue, an embroidered belt from J.T. Spencer will do the trick. You’ll have a choice between patterns like American flags, golf clubs, and shamrocks.
These belts use cotton canvas web straps with leather accents and traditional buckles, offering a classic style with a bit of flair.
Best Micro-Adjustable Belt
For the ultimate in convenience, check out these micro-adjustable belts. They allow you to choose the perfect fit while also looking great.
Marino Avenue Leather Ratchet Dress Belt
Guys looking for an entry-level micro-adjustable belt should check out Marino Avenue’s Leather Ratchet Dress Belt. These belts come in 1.25-inch wide genuine leather straps with zinc alloy ratcheting buckles. Each belt features 38 adjustments, so dialing in the right fit won’t be a problem.
Guys with a unique pair of dress shoes should definitely check out Marino Avenue’s color selection. They offer 36 different combinations of buckles and leather, allowing you to match a belt with just about any pair of shoes.
If you don’t mind spending a little bit more money on a micro-adjustable belt system, you can choose an option from the leader in the market. After almost 15 years in business, Anson Belt and Buckle has the formula down.
Their belts come in leather and canvas, and their ratcheting buckles are easy to swap out for an entirely new look.
Each belt features at least 30 adjustments spaced a quarter of an inch apart. And, since you’re able to cut these belts to size yourself, you don’t have to worry about choosing the correct size.
Belts are one of the best ways to upgrade your style and stay looking sharp. If you’re heading to a formal suit and tie affair, choose a belt like the Allen Edmonds Manistee.
Laid-back fabric belts like The Tie Bar’s Braided Fabric Belt are awesome for backyard get-togethers. Whichever the event, the right belt for the right occasion will make a big difference in your style and the way your outfit comes together.
And, because a belt’s entire purpose is to hold your pants up, they’re one of the best accessories you can use to stay stylish.