A Guide for Choosing the Right Leather Belt

Leather briefcases for men

A leather belt is a wardrobe staple. Like socks or a tie clip, they make an outfit functional, but also add an element of style. This isn’t to say that mens leather belts need to make a fashion statement; in fact, a well-chosen belt is subtle.

A good belt ties a man’s look together, without calling attention to itself. However, an ill-fitting belt can do just the opposite, and not all men have an eye for these style subtleties. Follow these tricks to choose mens leather belts for every occasion on your calendar.

    Selecting the Size: A belt that is too long looks clownish, and a belt that is too short makes even the most fit gentleman look like he’s squeezed. Belt sizing is easy enough that all men should be able to select an appropriate length and avoid both extremes.

    Use your pant size and choose a belt that is two or three sizes larger. For example, if you wear a 32, look for belts in the 34 to 36 range. This should allow the belt to comfortably buckle and reach as far as your first belt loop. Since very few men will find belts that exactly reach that first loop, it’s better to go shorter. Longer quickly looks unprofessional.

    Choosing the Best Color and Shine: It’s always a good idea to have both a quality brown belt and a go-to black belt in your closet. They are staples, and chosen well, each will see you through many occasions. Still mens leather belts can come in a large variety of shades and shines. A foolproof way to select the correct color and finish for your wardrobe is to use your shoes as a guide.

    In a well-suited outfit, all leather accessories match. If you tend to wear the same, matte, black shoes to work everyday, then you should find a good black belt of a similar shade and finish. A good set of shoes and a matching belt make for an outfit that is professional and polished.Add a leather satchel or tote to really complete the look.

    The Right Belt for the Right Event: Some occasions are fancier than others. The trick of matching your belt to your shoes can help keep your belt on point. For a black tie dinner with your shiny black dress shoes, go for the shiny black belt. Still, color and finish aren’t all that’s involved. There’s also the belt hardware and width to worry about.

    Similar to matching your belt and shoes, you can decide between gold and silver belt buckles by thinking about your metal accessories. Do you wear a gold watch? Go for a gold buckle. If you’re selecting a belt for work, you’ll want something more downplayed, not too thick or flashy. A casual belt can be bolder, if that’s more your style. Mens leather belts should reflect their personalities, and understate is always a classic and confident look.

    Choosing the Material: Not all leather for sale is equal, and the higher the quality in leather and workmanship, the longer any belt will last. Bonded leather uses leather scraps and remnants to manufacture a single leather swatch. Similarly, genuine leather relies on many layers of leather sewn together. The top layer is often higher quality, which makes the belt look and feel like a sturdy product. Both are made of true leather, but they will show wear quickly.

    Full-grain leather products are the top of the line in fine leather goods, made from a single pelt. A full-grain belt will certainly cost more, but the price is apparent in the durability and longevity of each product. If you want a belt to wear once or twice a year, you can get away with bonded or genuine leather. A great full-grain belt will be a go to for years and years to come.

Fashions may come and go, but a good belt will always be the keystone to a man’s wardrobe. Men will spend money on a nice suit, and a quality belt deserves just as much attention. Mens leather belts come in so many shapes and sizes, but using these guide lines, anyone should be able to select a great belt that will look good and last a lifetime.

How Man Buns, Vegan Mens Leather Backpacks, and Stylish Sunglasses Are Taking Over the Modern Fashion Scene

Leather totes

When archaeologists and anthropologists first set their sights on learning more about an ancient civilization or culture, one of the first things they begin to study in order to gain a better understanding of that civilization or culture is its art, which includes architecture, drawings, paintings, pottery, jewelery, and of course, fashion. Since the time of the earliest human beings, fashion, which includes clothing, accessories, hairstyles, and jewelry, has been an integral part of culture and society. Then, as with now, it was used as a means of self expression and practicality, while also denoting marital or wealth status.

Clothing, including accessories and jewelry, were used by ancient civilizations to celebrate their culture while also while also serving very functional purposes. Aside from modesty, clothing was used as a means of protection, especially for skilled laborers, hunters, gatherers, and other people who were frequently exposed to or worked with the elements. As such, animal hides and leather have always played an important role in fashion and clothing, both in ancient times and now.

For example, the buffalo was a sacred animal for many Native American and indigenous people. Not only was it a source of food, but it’s tough hide and fur made buffalo skin an excellent material for creating a variety of fine leather goods that were not only decorative, such as leather bracelets, but items that were also needed for survival, such as thick leather belts for men, leather totes for women who needed them when gathering or foraging food, and even mens leather satchels for long journeys. Indigenous peoples practiced a subsistence hunting lifestyle, relying on the buffalo to provide for their basic needs of food, clothing, and even shelter. Unlike early Europeans who senselessly massacred thousands upon thousands of buffalo for no reason other than sport, Native Americans revered this animal for its ability to provide for their cultures and way of life.

Fast forward to today, and leather is still worn and used in many modern cultures. Just as it was during ancient times, leather is prized for its hardiness, sturdiness, thickness, and durability. Aside from it’s more functional purposes, leather also has a unique aesthetic that appeals to many people. Thanks to increased awareness and passion for animal welfare however, many people are choosing to not only eat a plant based or vegan diet but are also choosing to adopt a totally plant based lifestyle, which includes not wearing leather goods such as mens leather backpacks.

There are however many popular plant based leather options for people that like the look and feel of leather but aren’t keen on where it came from or how it’s made. Pleather and faux-leather goods, such as mens leather backpacks, are just as fashionable and durable as the original without requiring the life of an animal to be taken. These materials offer all the benefits of wearing leather clothing an items such as mens leather backpacks while being more sustainable, environmentally friendly, and ethical.

In terms of plant based materials used in fashion and in terms of fashion in general, many people generally assume that women are more involved in fashion than men. After all, the majority of supermodels are women and women working as models tend to earn higher wagers and salaries than men. However many fashion forward and ethically conscious men are emerging as fashion icons, sporting trendy, ethical styles such as mens leather backpacks made from plant based materials, man buns and braided hairstyles, and of course, shades of some kind. These men are showing that men can be fashionable too, all while being ethical and environmentally responsible.

So what is vegan leather really made out of exactly? The term itself sounds like an oxymoron, but in reality, it makes perfect sense. The plant based or vegan leather used to make popular fashion items such as mens leather backpacks is made from material such as cork or see kelp, both of which provide the look and durability of leather. Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is also an excellent material for creating faux leather.

Choosing Leather Belts for Men A Buying Guide

Mens belts

Fine leather belts for men can make or break an outfit. From poor fit to poor quality or even simply poor style choice, a ill-worn leather belt can signal slovenliness. A fine leather belt, however, when properly fit and styled to coordinate, can bring an entire outfit together and elevate the appearance of the wearer.

With annual shipments of leather belts reaching $92 million and up, choosing the right belt from among the multitude of leather belts for men available can be a daunting task. This guide is designed to help ease that challenge. Whether you’re buying leather belts for casual wear or formal and shopping for yourself or someone else, here are the essentials every man, woman, and child should know about buying leather belts for men.

Size by length

Leather belts for men, like all belts, are sized by their length. To find the right leather belt, you need to determine the size you need. A properly fit dress belt will have a few inches of leather to the left of the fastened buckle when worn. Ideally you’d like enough extra length to tuck the free end under your belt loop, but not so much that you’re wrapping your waist a time and a half. You can get away with a bit more extra length in casual leather belts for men, but its still best to err on the side of short than long.

If you’re shopping for yourself, the easiest way to check for size is to try the belt on. If you’re shopping for a leather belt as a gift, however, you can gauge a good fit by the size listed on the belt. Most store-bought mens leather belts are sized based on pant size. For a proper fit, choose a belt that’s two to three sizes larger than your pant waist. For instance, if you wear a 34 inch waist, typically, opt for a leather belt labeled for a 36 inch to 38 inch belt.

Color

When choosing leather belts for men, coordinating the color is key. Be it a casual or dress belt, leather must always match leather. Considering that on average, a person will be wearing four leather items at any given moment, this can require more forethought than you might expect. If you’ll be wearing glossy, brown leather shoes, you want a glossy, brown leather belt to match. If your shoes are made of a matte leather, pick a matte belt. For the most put-together appearance, also match your belt to any leather briefcases you’ll be carrying.

Buckle up

As much as the quality of leather used on a leather belt, the buckle makes a statement as to quality and style. As a general rule of thumb, a bigger buckle indicates a more casual belt. A dress belt will usually have small, flat buckles that may be narrower even than the belt itself. A leather dress belt will almost always have either a gold or silver-colored buckle.

The buckle is another place to think about coordination. A dress belt buckle should be in the same color family as any type of male jewelry you’ll be wearing. If you plan to wear gold cuff-links with your suit, opt for a gold belt buckle. If you always wear a silver statement ring (this rule doesn’t apply to wedding bands, of course; only stylistic pieces), stick to silver belt buckles when you can.

For casual leather belts, think in terms of theme as opposed to shape or size. If you wear a lot of Western wear, find a belt to match.

Leather quality

When shopping for leather belts for men, the quality of the leather is paramount. There are four general types of leather: full-grain, top-grain, corrected-grain, and split leather. Top-grain and full-grain are considered the highest quality of leather, and as such are often the preferred type for fine leather goods and accessories.

Inspect the quality of the belt by flexing it and checking for signs of cracking or brittleness. High quality leather should be soft and supple. You can also test the quality by lightly scratching the backside of the belt with your fingernail. If doing so leaves a faint line, you’re holding a belt made of soft, fresh leather.