We have been custom fitting belts for 15 years now – it’s all we do – so hopefully we can give you some good insight on how best to fit your belt.
Traditionally belts come with 5 holes…and most people will tell you that you should fit into the middle hole of these 5.
When we started out in 2004 our belts also used to have 5 holes, but we soon dropped the 2 that were closest to the tip as it became evident to us from fitting customers that these 2 holes were superfluous as we would never wish for our customers to end up wearing their belt on either of them.

Why? Simply put it makes the belt look like it is too short with the tip length looking somewhat mean relative to everything else (and can also potentially make you look like you are overweight).

These 2 belts above are of the traditional 5 hole style. The buckles are shown in the holes nearest the tip so at 10 & 12.5cm (4" & 5") respectively from the tip. See how they make the tip look short?

We now have just 3 holes on all of our belts – positioned at 15cm, 17.5cm, 20cm from the tip – or if you prefer inches 6”, 7” and 8” from the tip.

The photo below shows 3 belts buckled in the each of the 3 different holes as listed above:

Elliot Rhodes Belts buckled in 3 different holes
When we size our customers we actually aim to place them in the middle of these 3 holes – so in the hole 17.5cm / 7” from the tip end (As the middle of the 3 belts above.
Why? We feel it achieves three things:
  1. It gives the belt a nice generous tip that does not look mean
  2. It gives you flexibility to drop down a hole without the belt suddenly looking too short – say if you are wearing lower cut trousers or have a big lunch!
  3. It gives you the flexibility to tighten up a hole too – say for higher waisted trousers or if you lose a couple of pounds.

If you follow the guidelines above you will be in good shape for all classic style belts. The Photo below of our Mclaren Belt shows a belt buckled up in the middle of the 3 holes which looks neat and tidy - ideal. 

A perfectly fitted belt in the middle of 3 holes

There are a few exceptions...

This is all about both Buckle Size/Style and also Belt Design.

Larger Buckles

If you happen to choose a belt with a larger buckle style you might want to aim to fit in the hole furthest away from the tip? Why is this? Simply put the larger buckle often covers some of the tip area and will make the belt appear shorter. So, by moving along a hole you create a better balance between buckle and tip.

The images below show a larger rectangular buckle positioned in 2 different holes - neither are wrong but you might like the feel of a slightly longer tip. The same applies in the case of the solid plate style buckle which is on the hole furthest from the tip.

Belt Style

Some belts come with specific detailing on the tip and dependent on how far this extends it may well be sensible to allow a little extra breathing space between this and the buckle. It helps show off the detail of the belt tip and gives the buckle its own space. The image below of our Silverado belt shows such a belt being worn on the last hole...

Where to buckle up a belt with tip detail


As a rule, I would always rather see someone wearing a belt that is a little long rather than too short. That being said, if you start venturing into territory where you are needing lots of extra holes then you really need to buy a smaller belt (or in our case pop in to have your original belt shortened!). Adding one extra hole in addition to the 3 we normally provide is fine – so at 22.5cm/9” from the tip. For casual belts this will look OK most of the time, for more formal belts I would suggest this is already starting to look a little sloppy and you should be looking to get a smaller belt.

I hope this starts you off in the right direction - but any questions feel free to ask!