Belt Sizing: Charts, Guide, Conversion | Men & Women

Finding the right belt size is however often tricky, and confusing. It’s always mistaken to be the same size as the waist although it’s not. Before shopping for belt size, especially if you’re buying online, it is important to understand first how belt sizes work.

The most common mistake that people make when buying a belt is using the pants waist size as the belt size, which is two different things – the belt size is not the same as your pants size.

In this guide, we’ve created a comprehensive discussion on everything you need to know about belts. How to measure belt size, types of belts, and belt size chart for both men and women. We’ve also included tips and tricks to identify your belt size. Use our belt size chart after doing manual measurements to determine your belt size easier.

How Do Belt Sizes Work?

How Do Belt Sizes Work?

Your belt size is not the same as your waist size or even your pants size. The belt size, as a general rule, is measured from the end of the belt buckle to the hole in the middle of the usually five-hole belt. Remember that the belt size usually excludes the measurement of the buckle.

In the US, belt sizes use inches, while most European countries measure the belt size in centimeters. The belt size is stamped at the back and commonly labeled 32, 34, 36, 38, etc for the American sizing standard.

Belts usually have five holes, and it is sized to the measurement of the middle hole.

Remember: To determine the perfect belt size for you, find a belt that is 2-3 inches larger than your pants size since belts are used around the pants and not the waist.


Mens Belt Size

Mens Belt Size

Mens belt size is easier to determine than that for womens in general. If you have an existing belt, but you’re unsure what the size is, you can just opt to measure it correctly to see the right size. Then you can pick the size closest to that measurement as your belt size. Mens belt sizes are usually labeled in inches, although some brands are offering even-number sizing which can sometimes be a little limiting. Men with very tiny or very broad waists will find it difficult to easily find the right belt size in off-the-rack shops, which mostly sells generally sized belts.

Mens Belt Size Chart

General Belt SizeNumerical Belt SizeWaist Measurement (inches)Length of Belt

Womens Belt Size

Womens Belt Size

Finding the belt size for women is not as easy as that of men, were you just add 2-3 inches to their pants size. Women’s belts, after all, are sized not just based on waist measurement. It’s not a 30, 32, 34 for women but a 10, 12, or 14. At the same time, belts for women are also labeled with a general sizing of a small, medium, large, and extra large for some other brands, rather than the length measurement. Refer to the belt size chart below.

Womens Belt Size Chart

General Belt SizeNumerical Belt SizeWaist Measurement (inches)Length of Belt
XS/Petite28Up to 26Up to 28

Belt Size Conversion Chart

Belt Size Conversion Chart

Americans usually use inches in belt measurements, while European countries prefer it in centimeters. Still, some companies use a more generalized sizing like S, M, L, XL, etc.

US Belt Size (inches)European Belt Size (centimeters)
32"81 cm
34"86 cm
36"91 cm
38"97 cm
40"102 cm
42"107 cm
44"112 cm
46"117 cm
48"122 cm
50"127 cm

Boys & Girls Belt Size Chart

Belt sizes for girls and boys are measured almost similarly. However, belt sizes and even measurements can still vary depending on the brand. So use the belt size chart only as a guide.

Age/Clothes SizeBelt Size (inches)
7 Slim24
7 Regular26
7 Husky26
8 Slim24
8 Regular26
8 Husky28
9 Slim24
9 Regular26
9 Husky30
10 Slim26
10 Regular28
10X Husky30
12 Slim26
12 Regular28

How to Measure Your Belt Size

How to Measure Your Belt Size

The best way to know your belt size is to measure around your waist where your belt normally sits. If the measurement ends up to be an odd number, consider getting the next size available.

Remember: In measuring, remember not to measure the buckle of the belt. The measurement will not be accurate and will instead be a little longer than the right size for you.

1. Measure Your Own Size

Measuring the size of your waist using a tape measure, in the hip area where your belt usually sits, is still the most accurate way to determine your right belt size. Again, belt size is not the same as waist size.

  • Wear the bottom (jeans/pants/joggers) that you plan to use with the belt.
  • Find a measuring tape and loop it around your waist where you want to put the belt on. Keep the level around your hip or waist area.
  • Write down the waist/hip circumference based on your measurement and add 2-3 inches to this size. This is the general rule of thumb for finding your belt size.

2. Measure an Existing Belt

Measuring an existing belt that fits you nicely is another way to know your belt size.

  • Put the belt on an even surface with all the sides flat on the surface from buckle to end.
  • Using a measuring tape, start measuring your belt from left to right. This means, end of the buckle to the belt hole that you normally use.
  • While measuring the belt, remember to measure only from the end of the buckle and not from end to end since this will not yield an accurate result.

3. Measure Your Pants

This method is usually not as accurate as the other two ways to measure your belt size. But when you’re in a hurry, this method could be used as an alternative since it still works in most belt sizes for men (and even some for women).

This method is also the easiest. The first thing that you need to do is find the pants that fit you nicely and identify its numeric size – usually based on waist measurement – such as 32, 34, 40. Just add 2-3 inches to that size to determine your belt size. If not convinced, you may opt to use any of the earlier options we’ve provided or use a belt size chart.

Most Important Things to be Known about Belt Sizes

  • The belt size is usually measured 2-3 inches bigger than your actual pants or waist size to accommodate the extra length in your pants. If your pants size is a 36”, you can not go wrong with a size 38” belt.
  • If your pants/waist size is an odd size, like 27, for example, round it up to the nearest even number size, in this case, a size 30 belt instead of a 29.
  • Belts usually contain five holes to stick the prong. A perfect fitting belt should let you stick the prong on the third hole. The perfect belt size should also be looped only for one to two times.
  • In the United States, most belt sizes are measured in inches, although some shops also provide general XS, S, M, L, XL sizing. European countries, meanwhile use centimeters in the belt measurements.

Different Types of Belts

  • Embossed Leather Belt: often used for formal attires and made of leather.
  • Brown Leather Belt: color is popular for its “manly” look; also for formal attire.
  • Top-stitched Belt: can be made from genuine or synthetic leather with top stitches.
  • Braided Leather Belt: features braided design and is very popular for its rich look.
  • Thin Women’s Leather Belt: always offered in different colors, shapes, and design. This can go with anything in your closet.
  • Distressed Leather Belt: features a classic, vintage or overused look that is fit with distressed fashion style.
  • Double Stitched Formal Leather Belt: double-stitched belts are very famous in western countries for its formal, sleek look. The double stitching also ensures the belt will withstand common wear and tear.
  • Initial Leather Belts: designer brands are all releasing belts with initials on the buckle which looks very sophisticated and elegant.
  • Motif Belts: usually handmade and goes well with simple costumes. Tribal lines made from traditional materials are common designs.
  • Chain Belt: belts with chains or studs is a growing trend among the younger generation, as an accessory of “self-expression.” The usual choice of the trendy.

Belts are great for adding a little personality to an outfit. Now that you’ve already learn how to pick the perfect belt size for you, it will now be easier to shop for belts in different designs, colors, styles and materials to express your personality. The best thing is that belts can change the look and feel of your clothing easily. And now, it’s not that difficult to find the right size for you.