"Should My Belt Match My Shoe's Colour?", Answered By A Shoe Insider

Should i match my shoes and my belt? 

In short, yes.

Especially if you wear black shoes. 

Black shoes with brown belt just looks off…the contrast is too much.

It’s a simple principle.

Match your belt with your shoes and you’ll be safe and look well dressed.

Now for the non short answer.

Formal/Dress Attire And Dress Shoes


The more dressy or formal your attire,

The more your belt and shoes should match. 

This includes both color and texture (shine and finish).

So if you’re wearing a full grain leather shoe which is most dress shoe,

You should not be wearing a crocodile leather belt even if they are the same shade of color.

Dress shoes go with dress belt.

Dress belts are basically less thick and have more conservative buckles.

Black is easy but what about brown?

At best, you should try to match the shade of brown.

It does not have to be identical but it has to be in the same ballpark.  

Try to get it some close as possible.

When belt shopping, don’t match colors by memory.

Save yourself time and money by bringing your shoes along.

The Difference Between Dress Belt And Casual Belt

A quick guide on what is casual or dress belt

A quick guide on what is casual or dress belt

There is no hard and fast rule for the formality of belt

But i'm gonna give you one to follow anyway. 

There are three main areas to look at: 

  1. Size/Width of your belt
  2. Buckle Design 
  3. Material and Color


It will be 2.5 – 3.5cm wide, made of fine leather. 

Anything wider is casual. 

Buckle Design

The buckle should be clean and simple. 

Anything that is oversized, unique in design or contains your favorite cartoon character is casual. 

Material And Color

The material should be calf/cow leather and has a smoother finish. 

Anything that contains fabric, textured finish or a more "unique" leather are more casual. 

Your crocodile, ostrich or suede leather are somewhere in the middle.

Not formal formal but not exactly casual as well. 

For colours, brown, black or another subtle colour. 

Anything with bright colors or more than one tone is considered more casual. 

Casual Attire and Casual Shoes

With casual shoes, your belt should coordinate instead of match.

With coordination, take into account your outfit so experiment.

Because there are no rigid rules with casual shoes, unlike dress shoes.

The one rule to follow is not to wear dress belts with casual shoes.

Too much contrast.

If you’re wearing dress shoes with smart casual attire like jeans or khaki,

Just follow the matching principle earlier.


Key Takeaway: Match both color and texture for your dress belt and shoes. 

If the attire is more casual, you have more flexibility so you do not need to match too closely.

For casual shoes, do not wear dress belt.



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