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The Best Men’s Belt

Last updated on August 29, 2022

Our Review Process

Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

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Our Picks For The Top Men's Belts

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
 Top Pick

Lavemi Leather Strap Ratchet System Men’s Belt

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

Lavemi

Leather Strap Ratchet System Men's Belt

The best part about this fashionable accessory is the buckle. The ratchet design allows you to clamp it on quickly and tighten as needed with a few small pulls. When it's time to take off, a simple unlatch sets the belt free.

Overall Take

Easy to AdjustThere are no holes needed with this ratcheted buckle design.

 Runner Up

Dickies Double Prong Buckle Leather Men’s Belt

Dickies

Double Prong Buckle Leather Men's Belt

If you're looking for a work belt that can stand the test of time, this delivers. The leather material can do its job for years and resists scuffing. The two holes for the buckle prong make it extra secure.

Overall Take

Durable, Classic StyleThe leather material is plenty strong.

 We Also Like

Columbia Single Prong Buckle Embossed Logo Men’s Belt

Columbia

Single Prong Buckle Embossed Logo Men's Belt

The clean design makes this belt great for jeans or work pants. There's nothing fussy about the material but it holds up well even in high humidity. The reinforced belt holes are made to stand up to sustained pulling without stretching out.

Overall Take

Reliable Everyday WearAt work or play, this belt holds up well.

 Also Great

HIMI Auto-Locking Slide Ratchet Buckle Men’s Belt

HIMI

Auto-Locking Slide Ratchet Buckle Men's Belt

This belt can complement almost any formal outfit thanks to the distinctive leather material and lack of unsightly holes. The belt itself has subtle ridges that help the buckle take hold. The buckle itself has a ratchet that allows wearers to pick their perfect length.

Overall Take

Clean, Dressy LookThis ratchet belt is both fashionable and versatile.

Buying Guide

For almost as long as we’ve had pants, the humble belt has been a reliable workhorse. At a basic level, it has but one job: To keep those pants up. But any rope can do that, and you wouldn’t want to wear one to a date. Among other things, picking the right belt requires thinking about your outfit, where you’re going to wear it, and how much time you have to put it on.

Start with the occasion. The look and size of a formal belt are going to be noticeably different from those of the one you wear on the weekends. For starters, dress belts tend to be thinner. Belts in general don’t vary much in width, and most are anywhere from one to one-and-a-half inches. But that extra half inch will definitely stand out on a tailored suit, and not in a good way. The best dress belts have a polished look to them, so high-grade leather is a good bet. You’ll want the buckle to be smaller, and for bonus style points make sure that it matches the general color of your watch or cufflinks. Likewise, you should try to have the strap color match your shoes.

For casual or work belts, you can focus more on comfort and versatility. Any material or configuration is OK, as long as it fits your usual style. Want to wear that giant metal cowboy buckle? Have fun, as long as you’re not doing it to a job interview.

Now let’s talk about the material on the strap. Belts can be made out of just about any fabric or animal hide known to man, and you can certainly find “statement” belts out there made from alligator hide or snakeskin. If you can afford it though, quality leather remains a good choice that suits all styles. It holds up well against both harsh weather and sustained stretching, and it has a very distinctive look. Mind you, not all leather belts perform equally well. Full grain or top grain leather can last for many years. Belts advertised as “genuine leather” might sound fancy, but the designation actually refers to an inferior grade of hide.

Suede is another reliable material that can be both dressy and laid-back. Belts made of canvas or webbing can last a long time, but they’re best suited for casual outfits. Vinyl can be made to look very fancy or deliberately loud, but it’s usually not the most durable choice.

Finally, let’s focus on the buckle. For many years, most belt buckles had the same basic configuration: A plate or D-shaped frame with a prong that fit through one of the holes in the belt. That style is still the most popular one today, and usually is the most affordable (unless we’re talking about those Texas-sized novelty buckles). If you want your belt to last, make sure that the holes are nice and thick and the stitching is secure. Even quality leather can get stretched out around the belt holes with sustained use.

If you want a cleaner look, box frame or ratchet-style belt buckles are becoming increasingly popular. With these fasteners, there’s no need for any holes at all. The buckle simply clamps down on the strap, squeezing it between the two sides of the frame. With ratchet belts, you can sometimes even adjust the tightness on the fly with a couple of pulls. This style of buckle tends to work best with suede or canvas straps that won’t get worn down by the pulling, but well-made leather can also hold up well.

What to Look For

As we all know, belts are adjustable — but you’re still going to have to find the right size. Luckily, belt makers have made it pretty easy. Sizes are almost universally listed in inches, so you can compare it to your usual waist size. As a good rule of thumb, you want to give yourself a little wiggle room. Go for a belt that’s a couple inches longer than your pants size, but not much more.

More to Explore

Belts are super-functional, but there’s never been a belt more super — or more functional — than Batman’s utility belt. In the comics, this handy holder had pockets that contained smoke pellets, lockpicks, tracers, batarangs and even a pellet of Kryptonite. On the campy Adam West TV series, the earliest versions of Batman’s belt had pouches made out of kitchen sponges. Not nearly as useful, but at least they looked cool — on low-res 1960’s TV sets.

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