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How To Choose The Right Belt

When you’re putting your outfit together, you think of what shirt and pants you are going to put together. And if it is with a suit, you are making sure that all the elements match. Often one of the last items you put on, is overlooked. The belt.

But it shouldn’t be. Here are a few tips to make sure you belt is not hurting the rest of your outfit.

  1. Match your shoes. Your belt should always match your shoes. If you are wearing brown shoes, then you should be donning a brown belt. Don’t just wear a black belt with all color shoes. You can wear that black belt when you are wearing your black shoes. If you have different shades of brown shoes (i.e. lighter and darker shades), have matching belt for both or all shades.
  2. Match your setting. If you have a shiny, dressy belt that you bought with those fancy new oxfords, don’t wear it with your Clarks. If you are wearing khakis and casual shoes, have a casual matte (non-shiny) casual belt. And probably even more important is the opposite. Don’t wear that thick, heavy, large buckled casual belt when you are busting out your nice and elegant suit. Dressy with dressy. Casual with casual.
  3. Match your outfit. This is kind of a tip for belts and shoes. Again to emphasize, you’re going to wear the same color belt and shoes. If my outfit is pretty much anything other than black, I am wearing a brown belt and shoes. I’m just not a big black shoes fan. On occasion I will wear black shoes with a navy suit, if my tie is mostly darker shades. When you are wearing mostly light colors, especially your pants, whether it be a suit or a casual outfit, it’s best to go with brown shoes and belt. Khakis especially. They are a light color and they go best with brown belt and shoes. It just looks so much better put together. Like you thought about your outfit, and not just threw “whatever” on.
  4. Buy real leather. I love good leather items. And the same with the belt. That new leather smell of a nice new pair of shoes, leather car seats, (and if you’re like me, even a leather key fob) your belt can have that same fresh leather smell. If you buy a genuine leather belt that is. Yes, you can get a bonded leather belt, that will crack and get brittle very soon. And you’ll be back buying a new one. I have a casual leather belt that I have had for about 15 years. No cracks. Even still smells like, leather! I have a dressy leather belt that I have had for about 6 years. And you would think it is new. Leather lasts long. It holds up. And just even looks better than the plastic-y looking bonded leather.

If you have been wearing a black belt with brown shoes because you don’t have a brown belt (or visa versa) go get yourself a new belt that matches those shoes! If you can’t tell genuine verses bonded just by feeling it, all belts will be stamped bonded or genuine leather on the back side.


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