The Common Belt

When push comes to shove, a belt is a strip of material that is worn around the waist. It holds up your clothes, helps you carry your wallet and/or tools, holds your gun, or it can just be a decoration for your hips. A belt can also serve as a symbol of rank for a knight or an earl or even be awarded as a mark of expertise in judo or karate. Wearing a belt may be a simple task, but when it is done correctly, it shows that a man knows his style. Belts are one of the easiest ways to express your personal taste.

Here are a few simple steps to allow you to get it right every time.

Step 1: How do you figure out what size belt you wear?

Measuring for a belt
1) Lay your current belt flat.
2) Measure from the end of the prong to the hole that you currently use.
The rest of the belt is not important. Do not include the buckle in the length of your belt.

American 26in 28in 30in 32in 34in 36in
European 65cm 70cm 75cm 80cm 85cm 90cm
American 38in 40in 42in 43in 44in 48in
European 95cm 100cm 105cm 110cm 115cm 120cm

Step 2: What length of belt should you buy?

When buying a formal belt or signature belt, you should have a couple of inches of leather to the left of your buckle. This will allow you to tuck the belt through the first belt loops of your pants. You want to remember that it is better to be to short than to wrap half way around your waist. (Example: If you wear a 34″ pant, a belt labeled 36 will allow nice length to tuck under your loop. )

When it comes to length, you have more flexibility when you are buying a natural leather belt or a fabric belt. You can use belts to make a personalized statement of style.  Just remember that belts are like Saturday nights- you want them to go a bit long,  but extensive hangover is just going to leave you looking silly.
Step 3: What are the 5 Belts you need in your wardrobe:

1) A formal brown or black belt that matches your dress shoes. Best to get one of each for the sake of flexibility. These guys will be your best friends at weddings, bar mitzvahs and state dinners for years to come.

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2) A natural leather belt that will go with any pair of jeans. Woven or braided usually works best. A casual yet stylish choice will make you the perpetual King of dress-down Fridays.

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3) A Signature Belt- something that is a lot of fun that will allow you to stand out in the crowd, or maybe blend in at your favorite metal show.

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4) A fabric belt, you have probably had one in your wardrobe since you were a kid. Really, though- in the summer, nothing is better than a D-ring buckle in a fun colour. Or, for a neat military look, take a fabric belt, measure it according to the standards above, then cut it off at the buckle for just a bit of overhang.

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5) None at all- If your pants fit, you don’t need a belt.

Step 4: Should you really buy a logo belt?

We all know that every design house is hoping that you secretly want their logo in the center of your waist. Or maybe you’re repelled by the thought of such an obvious appeal.  Either way, the important thing to remember here is to make sure their logo isn’t outshining your personality.

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