How to wear a belt

A belt is a wonderful addition to your wardrobe, it adds great contrast and colour and can really enhance a slim waist, but can everyone wear one? Do you have a drawer full of belts that you never wear and don’t really understand why? I think a lot of us do, so here’s some guidance on who can wear a belt and how.


Things to take into consideration

Body Shape

The first thing to look at is your body shape. I would advise against wearing a belt if you are an oval body shape that goes out at the waist. A belt will only accentuate that area which we would try to minimise by bringing attention to other parts. If you are an hourglass and have curves that go in at the waist a belt is perfect for you. If you have a straight bodyline, such as a rectangle, then a belt with a bit of interest, such as an obi belt can bring shape to an otherwise straight area. If your shoulders are wider than your hips such as an inverted triangle then a belt slung lower on the hips will add interest and balance out your shoulder width.


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If you are high waisted then a wide belt may sit too close to your bustline and make your proportions look out of balance so opt for a slim belt instead and try to get at least 2” between your belt and your bustline. If you are low waisted then a wide belt is a great way to balance out your longer body. It’s important with any proportions to keep your body in balance so when you try a belt on look in the mirror and see if it is making you look particularly long or short in the torso and adjust where your belt is to correct the balance.


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There are 3 body scales: petite, average and grand. These are based on bone structure and not dress size, a grand could be a size 8 and a petite a size 30. It’s important to think about your scale when looking at belts to ensure they don’t either dominate your look or get totally lost in it. As such a petite should be wearing a thinner belt and a grand a wider belt to balance out a look.




In Summary

If you have the right body shape a belt is a wonderful accessory to an outfit, you can have either a blended or totally contrasting colour and have lots of fun changing the look of a plain outfit with one. Another way to wear a belt is to wear it over your outerwear coats and jackets to bring interest, colour and a modern twist. Have fun wearing your belts, they are a very useful accessory to have. 


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