How to belt

Measuring a well-fitting belt you already own is the best way to determine your belt size. Lay the belt on a clean, flat surface. Start the tape measure at the hole you use and measure to the end of the belt, where it meets the buckle. Belts are measured in inches and you should round to the nearest inch. If you measure 36 inches, you will want to purchase a size 36 belt.

How to belt

Note: This measurement technique is standard for newer Proper Cloth belts, that all feature 5 holes. However, this may not reflect other makers’ measuring standards. For example, some will include the buckle in the belt length measurement.

How to Choose a Belt Size based on Pant Size

An easy way to determine belt size is to simply “add 2″ to your off-the-rack trouser size. For example, if you wear a 36” waist trouser, then a 38 belt size will be a safe bet. Most will find this simple formula works best for pants worn at a traditional height–close to the natural waistline. For a belt to wear with low rise trousers or jeans, consider adding 3 or 4 to your pant size.

Pant Size to Belt Size

– If your pants size = 32, choose belt size = 34

– If your pants size = 34, choose belt size = 36

– If your pants size = 36, choose belt size = 38

– If your pants size = 38, choose belt size = 40

Note: Belt Sizes shown in US/UK standard size.

How to Measure Your Body for Belt Size

To measure your body for optimal belt size, start by threading the tape measure through the belt loops of your trousers. It’s important to stand in a relaxed, natural position–do not push out your belly or suck it in–when taking the measurement. The measuring tape should be snug. Measure in inches and round to the nearest inch. Choose the belt size closest to this measurement.

General Belt Information

Over time, leather belts tend to stretch. Braided belts even more so. It’s good to keep in mind that a belt that fits snug initially will likely wear more comfortably down the road.

Belts are NOT measured by diameter nor folding the belt in half. The most accurate way to measure the circumference of a v belt is with a v belt measuring tool or using a cloth tape measure (Not a steel tape measure or ruler). An additional option is to wrap a small diameter string/rope around the belt, then measure the length of the string. When measuring be sure to have the belt under slight tension and the cloth tape measure is tightly against the back of the belt. Also, keep in mind belts do stretch and unfortunately there is no specific value for how much a belt can stretch. You’ll also need to measure the width and depth to determine which section v belt you have.

Classic & Kevlar V Belt Sections

    – 3/8″ Width X 7/32″ Depth – 1/2″ Width X 5/16″ Depth – 5/8″ Width X 13/32″ Depth – 7/8″ Width X 17/32″ Depth – 1-1/4″ Width X 3/4″ Depth – 1-1/2″ Width X 29/32″ Depth – 1/2″ Width X 5/16″ Depth – 5/8″ Width X 13/32″ Depth – 7/8″ Width X 17/32″ Depth

Wedge V Belt Sections

    – 3/8″ Width X 21/64″ Depth – 5/8″ Width X 35/64″ Depth – 1″ Width X 7/8″ Depth – 3/8″ Width X 21/64″ Depth – 5/8″ Width X 35/64″ Depth

How to determine the belt number

All A,B,C,D,E,AX,BX belts list the inside circumference measurement after the letter of the v belt part number. Example: A88 has a 88″ inner circumference, then you add 2 inches for the A Section (Listed below) to obtain the outer circumference. If you measure the outer circumference, then you would subtract the number of inches based on the section you have (Listed below) to obtain the v belt number. This is also the same for the banded belts. Measure each individual band for banded belts to obtain the correct width.

Examples of how belt numbers are coded per section:

  • A Section= Add 2″ to belt number (Example A88 = 90″ Outside Circumference)
  • B Section= Add 3″ to belt number (Example B88 = 91″ Outside Circumference)
  • C Section= Add 4″ to belt number (Example C88 = 92″ Outside Circumference)
  • D Section= Add 5″ to belt number (Example D105 = 110″ Outside Circumference)
  • E Section= Add 6″ to belt number (Example E144 = 150″ Outside Circumference)
  • AX Section= Add 2″ to belt number (Example AX60 = 62″ Outside Circumference)
  • BX Section= Add 3″ to belt number (Example BX50 = 53″ Outside Circumference)

How fractional & wedge belt numbers are coded

All sections 3L,3V,5V,8V,3VX,5VX belts have the outside circumference after the number and letter(s). Example: Belt # 3V600 has a 60″ outside circumference. Inside circumference are not measured for these sections. This is also for the banded belts. Measure each individual band for banded belts to obtain the correct width.

Examples of how belt numbers are coded per section:

  • 3L Section= (Example 3L450 = 45″ Outside Circumference)
  • 3V Section= (Example 3V800 = 80″ Outside Circumference)
  • 5V Section= (Example 5V1180 = 118″ Outside Circumference)
  • 8V Section= (Example 8V2120 = 212″ Outside Circumference)
  • 3VX Section= (Example 3VX520 = 52″ Outside Circumference)
  • 5VX Section= (Example 5VX810 = 81″ Outside Circumference)

Measuring K Micro Rib Belts:

  • K Section= 0.140″ X’s the number of ribs

All sections K micro rib belts will have the outside circumference in front of the letter. The rib count will be the number after the letter.

How to belt

On a number of occasions, I’ve met a number of well-dressed gentlemen in nice suit, nice dress shirt, dress shoes but a casual belt around the waist. I’ve also seen casually dressed men wearing shorts, t-shirt, sneakers but a slim dressy leather belt.

Hold on for a minute:

In case you didn’t notice, the looks I just described above are actually inappropriate ways of pairing this powerful classic accessory called “belt”… take a step backward and read the paragraph again…

…and in c ase you still don’t understand what’s wrong with the looks… please read on to learn the 12 unbreakable rules for wearing belts.

This men’s belt guide article is meant to help you pick and match the right belt and ultimately help you step up your belt game.

1. Every gentleman should invest in at least two (2) good quality dressy leather belts, one casual belt and one fabric belt (canvas belt or braided belt).

How to belt

2. Ensure the color of your belt matches the color of your dress shoes. Black shoe should match with Black Belt, same goes for Brown and Red shoes.

How to belt

3. Ensure that the finish of your belt matches with that of your shoe, for instance, if your shoe has a wet-look (patent leather) then ensure you match it with a belt that has a wet look. Same goes for plain leather with plain leather, suede leather with suede leather and fabric with fabric.

How to belt

During the summer, dresses are my go-to. Belts are a great option to give yourself some shape and upgrade your outfit. Let me show you how to wear a belt with a dress and show you how big of a difference it makes!

Let me show you how to wear a belt with a dress

I’m living in summer dresses lately. They’re such an easy choice for the summer, and make me feel put together. I’m also constantly wearing them with belts and you guys have been asking about them. Let me show you how to wear a belt with a dress.

A quick and easy way to upgrade any dress

I’m serious, adding a belt to a dress is the easiest way to upgrade any outfit. I’ll show you a few examples of how it takes an outfit to the next level.

But first, here are three reasons to belt your dress

Adding a belt instantly creates a waistline

A belt gives shape to a boxy dress

Chic belts instantly upgrade your look

Which dresses should be belted?

Honestly you can belt basically any dress. But these are the ones that will give you the most bang for your buck:

  • Shirt dresses. They often come with a belt, so just swap it out for a leather belt. Instantly chic.
  • T-shirt dresses. They’re shapeless by nature, so adding a belt gives you a waist and makes the outfit feel a little nicer.
  • Fit and flare dresses. Dresses that already have a defined waist are totally a great option, even if the the shape is already defined. It just adds a little something special and breaks up the dress.
  • Maxi dresses. These long dresses often need something to break up all that fabric. A little belt in the middle is the perfect way to do that.

Are there any dresses you shouldn’t belt?

I’d say the only ones I’d be careful with are dresses with an elastic waistband built into the dress. It can definitely work, but the belt will more easily slide around and expose the elastic waist throughout the day, since the belt won’t be sitting on smooth, flat fabric. Make sense?

Also dresses with a lot of volume and fabric get very bunch-y when their belted.

It’s more of a case by case basis here, and these styles of dresses can totally still work, just be aware that you might have these issues with these styles of dresses.

Here are some examples of cute dresses that are belted

How to belt

all images found via pinterest

Now you probably want to grab a belt. Here are some great options.

Which belt is the most versatile?

During the summer, a skinny brown leather belt is my go-to. The one I’m wearing above is actually the belt from THIS BELT BAG, but THIS ONE is similar. My black belts get tons of use during the colder months, but they feel a little too bold and heavy with my summer dresses, and animal print feels more appropriate with rich hues in the fall.

So if you’re going to grab one for summer, get a brown leather one in a skinny to medium width. Braided, solid leather, straw…pick which one feels most your style. It’ll be super versatile for summer.

But I’d recommend having a black belt and a brown belt in your closet!

Trying to figure out how to tie your belts?

About a decade ago, tying your belts in crazy ways was really trendy. I think some of those crazy ways are still cute, but they can also easily feel a little dated. You can’t go wrong with belting it normally around your waist, or doing a simple loop knot, like I did in the picture below.

How to belt

We suggest measuring around the top of your pants where the belt loops are with a tape measure. From there you can find your measurement in the chart below.

If you don’t have a tape measure, you can go by your pant size. Going by your pants size is OK for the elastic belts because they are so stretchy and adjustable. It’s very rare we get a return for a size exchange for the elastic belts. Pants sizes shown below are for women’s pants. Men, you will have to use inches.

SMALL Size 6 and under 29″ and smaller (this will adjust down to 22″)
MEDIUM Size 7 – 10 30″ to 34″
LARGE Size 11 – 14 35″ to 39″
X-LARGE Size 15 – 18 40″ to 44″
2X-LARGE Size 19 – 22 45″ to 55″

Because the elastic belts are so stretchy, they are an easy fit. When in doubt choose one size up because not only are these belts stretchy, they are also adjustable. You can always make them smaller. And, it’s nice when the adjuster is at the side of your body instead of near the buckle.

SIZING FOR KIDS ELASTIC BELTS

One size only. Adjustable from 18″ to 28″.

SIZING FOR ADULT SUSPENDERS

One size only. Will fit a person who is 6′ 3″ or shorter.

SIZING FOR KID’s SUSPENDERS

One size only. Will fit a child 2-9 years old. Adjustable from 21” to 26”.

SIZING FOR WRIST CUFFS

Available in sizes small and large.

Small = 7” circumference (from center of snaps)

Large = 7 3/4” circumference (from center of snaps)

If you have any questions, please email us at [email protected]

SIZING FOR McFADDEN WOVEN BELT

The McFadden belt is sized like our leather-look belts without the holes. It’s sized via S, M, L, XL sizing. The chart below shows how those letters correspond to inches. If your measurement works on two different belt sizes, you must decide whether you want more or less of a tail at the end. That is a personal choice. We always suggest to go for the larger size.

How to belt

SIZING FOR 5D WOVEN BELT

The 5D belt is sized like our leather-look belts with 2 extra inches and there are no holes. It’s also sized via S, M, L, XL sizing. The chart below shows how those letters correspond to inches. If your measurement works on two different belt sizes, you must decide whether you want more or less of a tail at the end. That is a personal choice. We always suggest to go for the larger size.

Belts are NOT measured by diameter nor folding the belt in half. The most accurate way to measure the circumference of a v belt is with a v belt measuring tool or using a cloth tape measure (Not a steel tape measure or ruler). An additional option is to wrap a small diameter string/rope around the belt, then measure the length of the string. When measuring be sure to have the belt under slight tension and the cloth tape measure is tightly against the back of the belt. Also, keep in mind belts do stretch and unfortunately there is no specific value for how much a belt can stretch. You’ll also need to measure the width and depth to determine which section v belt you have.

Classic & Kevlar V Belt Sections

    – 3/8″ Width X 7/32″ Depth – 1/2″ Width X 5/16″ Depth – 5/8″ Width X 13/32″ Depth – 7/8″ Width X 17/32″ Depth – 1-1/4″ Width X 3/4″ Depth – 1-1/2″ Width X 29/32″ Depth – 1/2″ Width X 5/16″ Depth – 5/8″ Width X 13/32″ Depth – 7/8″ Width X 17/32″ Depth

Wedge V Belt Sections

    – 3/8″ Width X 21/64″ Depth – 5/8″ Width X 35/64″ Depth – 1″ Width X 7/8″ Depth – 3/8″ Width X 21/64″ Depth – 5/8″ Width X 35/64″ Depth

How to determine the belt number

All A,B,C,D,E,AX,BX belts list the inside circumference measurement after the letter of the v belt part number. Example: A88 has a 88″ inner circumference, then you add 2 inches for the A Section (Listed below) to obtain the outer circumference. If you measure the outer circumference, then you would subtract the number of inches based on the section you have (Listed below) to obtain the v belt number. This is also the same for the banded belts. Measure each individual band for banded belts to obtain the correct width.

Examples of how belt numbers are coded per section:

  • A Section= Add 2″ to belt number (Example A88 = 90″ Outside Circumference)
  • B Section= Add 3″ to belt number (Example B88 = 91″ Outside Circumference)
  • C Section= Add 4″ to belt number (Example C88 = 92″ Outside Circumference)
  • D Section= Add 5″ to belt number (Example D105 = 110″ Outside Circumference)
  • E Section= Add 6″ to belt number (Example E144 = 150″ Outside Circumference)
  • AX Section= Add 2″ to belt number (Example AX60 = 62″ Outside Circumference)
  • BX Section= Add 3″ to belt number (Example BX50 = 53″ Outside Circumference)

How fractional & wedge belt numbers are coded

All sections 3L,3V,5V,8V,3VX,5VX belts have the outside circumference after the number and letter(s). Example: Belt # 3V600 has a 60″ outside circumference. Inside circumference are not measured for these sections. This is also for the banded belts. Measure each individual band for banded belts to obtain the correct width.

Examples of how belt numbers are coded per section:

  • 3L Section= (Example 3L450 = 45″ Outside Circumference)
  • 3V Section= (Example 3V800 = 80″ Outside Circumference)
  • 5V Section= (Example 5V1180 = 118″ Outside Circumference)
  • 8V Section= (Example 8V2120 = 212″ Outside Circumference)
  • 3VX Section= (Example 3VX520 = 52″ Outside Circumference)
  • 5VX Section= (Example 5VX810 = 81″ Outside Circumference)

Measuring K Micro Rib Belts:

  • K Section= 0.140″ X’s the number of ribs

All sections K micro rib belts will have the outside circumference in front of the letter. The rib count will be the number after the letter.

There is no magic gun belt sizing formula that works for EVERY person and EVERY gear combination. The best and most accurate method of determining what size belt you should order is to actually MEASURE a belt that you currently wear . But as a general rule of thumb, in MOST cases the belt will need to be 3″ to 6″ greater than your pants waist size, depending on whether you plan to wear a holster, what kind of holster, and the size of the holster. In some cases with a very large Inside The Waistband (IWB) holster, a belt 7″ greater than pants waist size might be appropriate.

How to measure your current belt (make sure to use a belt that doesn’t stretch):

Put the belt on WITH whatever gear you plan to wear on your Beltman belt (holster, extra mags, flashlight, etc). A djust the belt to the proper snugness for security and comfort, and take note of the hole you are using. Then take the belt off and lay it out STRAIGHT on a table and measure from the FAR END of its buckle to the hole you used during your fit-test. Round the measurement to the nearest inch, and if your measurement is exactly on the half-inch, we recommend you round UP to the next inch.

How to belt

This measurement represents the actual circumference of your waist (with pants on) and is the size belt you need to order. For example, if your current belt measures 38 inches from the FAR END of the buckle to the hole you use (with your holster or other gear on), then order a size 38 Beltman belt, which will be 38 inches from the FAR END of the buckle to the CENTER hole, which will give you maximum adjustability in both directions.

If you don’t currently have a non-stretchy belt that fits you well, use a cloth tape measure to measure the circumference of your waist (WITH pants on). Put the tape measure through the belt loops on your pants and pull it just a LITTLE snug. Note the measurement to the nearest inch (and again, round up if right on the half-inch).

The measurement you get with either of these methods is the size belt you should order, and will likely be larger than you think your waist is — this is normal. I n most cases, a person’s measured circumference around their pants and through the belt loops, is 3″ to 6″ greater than their pants size. The exact difference between pants size and belt size will depend on the gear you plan to wear with your belt, as well as your personal preferences with regard to snugness. But if the measurement you get with either of the methods described above is NOT 3″ to 6″ greater than your pants size, we recommend you call us to discuss the discrepancy.

If you plan to use your Beltman belt for casual or dress wear, or with an Outside Waistband Holster, a belt that is 4″ larger than your pants size would probably fit well. If you use an Inside Waistband Holster (IWB), adding 5″ to your pants size will usually work, although if your IWB hoster and gun is especially large/bulky, you might need to add 6″ or even 7″ to your pants size.

Although measuring a current belt and/or using a cloth measuring tape to measure yourself are the most dependable methods of determining your size, you can use the table below as a quick reference.

But first, a few more comments about sizing: You are about to buy a dual layer gun belt made from a selection of several different types of leather; bull hide, horse hide, or elephant, or a combination of two of them. Our belts are designed to be stiff and firm to support your side arms and other gear, and they will do all of that very well. However, they will not defy gravity! If you hang a two-pound pistol on ANY belt and don’t buckle it up snugly enough, it’s going to sag. This should be remembered as you are choosing which hole in your current belt to measure to, especially if you are going to be carrying IWB. And many of our customers use the same belt for IWB carry and casual wear without a firearm. If this is what you have in mind, and you carry IWB often enough, and if your measurement when carrying versus NOT carrying is significantly different (2 inches or more), you can order a belt IN BETWEEN the two measurements. If you carry IWB every day, measure that way. If you don’t carry at all, measure that way.

If you have any questions about getting a properly sized belt, please don’t hesitate to call us at 205-415-5000. We look forward to helping you get an awesome gunbelt that fits perfectly!

The numbers in the chart below are NOT recommendations, but are the most common belt sizes that work for the listed pants sizes. But measuring a belt that currently fits you is the BEST way to get YOUR belt size, so please only use the chart below as a last resort if you simply CAN’T find (or borrow) a belt that fits you.

(OWB=Outside Waistband Holster, IWB=Inside Waistband Holster).

How To Read V-Belt Numbers

Automotive belts start with either 4L (12.5mm wide) or 3L (9.5mm). The number following it is the outside length of the belt in tenths of inches. The inside length of the belt is typically 2" less for a 4L belt, and 1-1/2" less for a 3L belt. An example would be 4L460, which would be 46" long outside, 44" inside.

"Classic" v-belt numbers start with a letter identifying the cross section, “A” through “E” – see V-Belt Dimensions below.

“A” series belts are the most common. The number following it is the inside length in inches. The outside length is typically 2 inches more. An example would be A44, 44" long on the inside, 46" outside; the equivalent of the 4L460 above.

“4L” belts measure the outside of the belt.

“A” belts measure the inside of the belt. (add 2" to come up with the equivalent 4L size.)

Outside Circumference per section:

  • A = Add 2" to belt number (Example A88 = 90" Outside Circumference)
  • B = Add 3" to belt number (Example B88 = 91" Outside Circumference)
  • C = Add 4" to belt number (Example C88 = 92" Outside Circumference)
  • D = Add 5" to belt number (Example D105 = 110" Outside Circumference)
  • E = Add 6" to belt number (Example E144 = 150" Outside Circumference)
  • AX = Add 2" to belt number (Example AX60 = 62" Outside Circumference)
  • BX = Add 3" to belt number (Example BX50 = 53" Outside Circumference)

Widths:

  • A Section = 1/2" Wide
  • B Section = 5/8" Wide
  • C Section = 7/8" Wide
  • D Section = 1-1/4" Wide
  • E Section = 1-1/2" Wide
  • AX Section = 1/2" Wide
  • BX Section = 5/8" Wide
Section Topwidth, a (Inches) Height, b (Inches) Angle, O Belt Range Inches
3L 3/8" 7/32" 40 170-1350
4L 1/2" 5/16" 40 170-4000
5L 5/8" 13/32" 40 230-2680
A 1/2" 5/16" 40 15-400
B 5/8" 13/32" 40 20-800
C 7/8" 17/32" 40 32-800
D 1-1/4" 3/4" 40 80-800
E 1-1/2" 29/32" 40 105-800
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