6 Ways to Style a Belt If You're Over 60
These are stylists' rules for everyday wear and statement situations.
When it comes down to it, a belt serves one purpose: to keep your pants in place. But over the years, these accessories have earned a rightful spot in many a fashionista's wardrobe. They can add a pop of color to your outfit, elevate your silhouette, and tie your look together. But sometimes, it's difficult to know how to style them and which types to purchase in the first place. To cut through the noise, we asked personal stylists for their best tips for wearing belts in your 60s and beyond. Read on to learn their thoughts on the best ones to wear for every day—and how to match them to your outfit—and which options to choose for more of a wow factor.
Coordinate with your accessories.
A belt is an easy way to stitch together different components of your outfit.
If you're unsure how to pair one with what you've got on, do this: "Always match a belt to your bag or shoes," says Michelle Barrett, stylist and founder of Capsule Closet Stylist. "If a buckle is gold or silver, match that to your bag or shoe detailing too, alongside any jewelry—it is much more cohesive." So, if you've got a tan bag with gold hardware, you'll want a tan belt with gold hardware (or no hardware).
If you prefer something more subtle, Elizabeth Kosich, certified image stylist and founder of Elizabeth Kosich Styling, suggests matching your belt color to your pants and opting for brushed, not polished, hardware.
Avoid thick belts.
Thick belts aren't always the most flattering—so if you're new to the belt game, you might want to skip them.
"If you are petite, avoid anything too wide," says Barrett. "A wide white belt, for example, will make you look bigger around the middle, whereas a medium to slim belt will have the opposite effect."
The same thing is true if you carry weight around your midsection: a thick belt will only add bulk.
Use a belt bag.
It's like a fanny pack—but cooler! "Either cinch or slouch at the waist for a stylish, hands-free look or consider as a short crossbody across chest or back," says Kosich. "Many belt bags have adjustable straps that convert to a long crossbody or shoulder bag, so consider versatility when shopping belt bags." It's the ultimate form-meets-function piece.
Add a belt to outerwear.
Belts aren't only made for pants. "Minimize the volume of basics like maxi vests, cashmere cardigan wraps, flannel shackets, and light jackets by cinching them at the waist," says Kosich. "Just remember the more layers and bulkier the garments, the narrower the belt."
She recommends a metallic mesh belt over a cashmere cardigan wrap, a thin rope belt over a shearling vest, or a medium-width tooled belt over a suede safari jacket. You can play with texture and make your outfits so much more interesting.
RELATED: 9 Coat Styling Tips If You're Over 60.
Try a chain belt.
Chain belts might seem intimidating, but styling them is easy. Just add one to a single-color dress outfit.
"If you are cool-toned, choose silver, and if you are warm-toned, choose gold," advises Barrett. "They are usually adjustable to most sizes and sit gently around the waist."
It's a great way to elevate a work shift or sweater dress into cocktail attire. To ease into the style, pair a midi-length black dress with knee-high boots and a chain belt in your desired finish. You can try more daring combinations from there.
Or a corset belt.
If you really want your belt to shine, choose a corset version. "They deliver drama and make an on-trend statement like no other accessory in 2023," says Kosich. "Pair either a corset belt or obi-style belt with a dress or jumpsuit for a turnkey monochromatic look, or try wearing over an untucked, white crisp blouse for a peplum effect."
You can also layer these types of belts over a blazer or light jacket.
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