How do you prefer to hold your pants up – with belts or suspenders? In the mid-nineteenth and early 20th century, suspenders were almost universally worn because the high cut of trousers during that time made belts impractical. Today, most pants fall slightly below the natural waist and belts have become the standard choice. However, modern suspender wearers tend to be passionate about their choice.
Why the enthusiasm for suspenders you might ask? If you haven’t fully considered your suspenders versus belts opinion, here are four key differences to help you develop your own informed stance.
1. Suspenders serve as a distinct fashion accessory; belts make a subtle fashion statement.
Say “suspenders” and the image that might come immediately to mind is that of an older, overweight man. However, that stereotype is simply not true. Suspenders today offer a distinct fashion accessory for men and women of all ages. With suspenders, men and women can showcase their personal style quickly and easily, as suspenders are designed to complement a wide range of personal styles. From fashion models to wall street executives to steampunks to your every day people, suspenders are a practical and fun way to accessorize your attire.
Comparatively, belts also make a fashion statement, albeit a subtle one. Belts can be worn by men and women too, but ultimately, lack some of the pizzazz of a one-of-a-kind pair of suspenders.
2. There are multiple types of suspenders, while there is only one type of belt.
Suspenders are available in numerous widths, fabrics, attachment styles, colors and patterns ensuring you can wear them for just about any occasion from special dressy events to rugged outdoor work and everything in between.
There are even leather suspenders that give you the look and feel of a classic belt in suspender form!
Conversely, belts feature a more limited range of style options. Belts boast a timeless look and feel, making them great for both casual and formal occasions where you want a subtle and functional way to keep your trousers in place.
3. Suspenders are making a fashion comeback; belts continue to stay stuck in neutral.
Suspenders are becoming exceedingly popular among children, teens and adults, as they provide you with a terrific opportunity to dress both fashionably and comfortably any time you choose.
On the other hand, belts appear to be stuck in neutral. These items may provide a subtle accent to casual or professional outfits, but rarely, if ever, serve as a bold fashion accessory.
4. Many people find that suspenders are more comfortable to wear; depending on your build, belts can cramp your style.
For those with large mid-sections, to be effective, belts must either be tightened to the point where they can feel constraining or worn “below the belly.” For others with narrow (or no) hips, belts can’t do the job no matter how much they are tightened.
Suspenders have neither of these problems, By distributing the load over the shoulders, suspenders allow pants to stay perfectly in place without discomfort. Additionally, suspenders are popular for business and dress attire because they allows pants to fall naturally thereby providing a clean and polished look.
When it comes to deciding between suspenders and belts, it is vital to consider many different factors. And with the aforementioned considerations, you’ll be able to make the right decision between suspenders and belts and ensure you can dress in comfort and style at all times.
Can’t decide? While formal fashion experts advise against wearing both suspenders and a belt at the same time, some folks just want to be doubly sure their pants stay in place. It looks nice – and some would say if you have belt-loops on your pants, it looks better to fill them with a belt rather than have them be empty. So, if you are comfortable thumbing your nose at the nay-sayers we say go ahead and do as you please!
There are even suspenders designed specifically for this purpose. One popular type, called belt-clip suspenders, feature a heavy plastic clip that slides over belts up to 1 1/2 inches wide. A second type, often found on galluses (heavy duty suspenders designed for western wear) feature leather loops that belts can slide through.
Suspenders, belts or both? The choice is yours!