Suspenders are a great way to not only amp up your style, but also provide some much needed support for your pants.
Whether you plan on partying till the late hours at your friend or relatives wedding, or are simply looking for some required support for work, below we will be reviewing a wide variety of suspenders, which we think, will meet your unique needs.
In addition to providing in-depth reviews from all the best suspender brands, we will also be sharing with you a few things to look out for when purchasing a pair of suspenders.
And if that wasn’t enough, we will also share with you a few style pointers so you will look your absolute best once they arrive in the mail.
Let’s dive in.
The Best Men’s Dress Suspenders 2021
1. Best Overall: Col. Littleton No.2 Men’s Suspenders
As Col. Littleton says, “You can’t make extraordinary leather products from less than extraordinary leather.” These leather suspenders are made with a lifetime warranty, a true testament to the company and their values. They are also made to be casual, making them the perfect suspenders to wear with jeans or khakis. These are great for men who want a high-quality pair of suspenders that transition easily between different outfits.
Col Littleton has been highly sought after for over thirty years and are a household name in the leather business. These suspenders are made with the brand’s vintage brown polished leather and paired with solid brass hardware. They sport an adjustable design, which is great for both tall or short men, and the solid brass hooks allow for 9 inches of adjustment to the straps on the front.
These No.2 Suspenders come with three suspender clasps that you can easily attach to your pants.
Other men have rated these suspenders as outstanding. Many loved the excellence behind both the materials used and the craftsmanship.
- High quality
- Excellent craftsmanship
- Made from full-grain leather
What You Need To Know
2. Best for a Tuxedo: Nordstrom’s Men’s Tuxedo Suspenders
These narrow and classic suspenders by Nordstrom are perfect for men on a budget that still want to look great for a formal occasion – such as a black tie event, wedding, or gala. Have an event or a formal night out? These are the suspenders you’ll want to go with.
These suspenders rely on a sleek satin design and are trimmed with finely classic leather. The elegant design is eye-catching, you will be looking like a million bucks, even though they are incredibly affordable!
While their distribution is a bit limited – sold only at Nordstrom – their free shipping/free return policy should making picking these up pretty effortless. Other men found these suspenders are “excellent quality”, “elegant”, and “sharp”.
- Great for a fancy occasion
- Perfect for men ready to party
- Limited use
What You Need To Know
3. Best for Big & Tall Guys: DXL X-Back Men’s Suspenders
The DXL X-Back Suspenders are made for men that want a quality and comfortable suspender for their naturally larger frame. Sometimes it can be hard for men who range into larger sizes to feel comfortable in what they wear, especially with suspenders. This pair from DXL will make take away the discomfort in wearing suspenders that are made for average men.
Made from 100% nylon (perfect stretch material!), these suspenders by DXL offer a fair bit of stretch and versatility thanks in part to the naturally flexible fabric coupled with the front adjusters. Made to work with men up to 6’1” tall – these suspenders should work well to provide just that little bit of extra support.
As far as color variety, these X-Back Suspenders come in two conservative (yet versatile) color choices: black or navy. Both black and navy are colors that you’ll be able to wear interchangeably with a great majority of outfit colors you have in your closet.
DXL brand provides one of the best selections of big and tall men’s XL clothing out on the market. They size up to 8X and waist size 72, a true benefit to larger men wanting to feel comfortable.
Other men share a common love for the product. Many say they are extremely comfortable while being supportive at the same time, something that can be hard to find.
- Made for big and tall men
- Sizing may not fit average men
What You Need To Know
The Best Men’s Work Suspenders 2021
4. Best Overall for Work: Dickies Straight Clip Men’s Suspender
The Dickies Straight Clip Suspenders are high quality and heavy duty; resulting in an eye-catching design while still being wearable. It’s a breath of fresh air to find a pair of suspenders that look expensive (but aren’t!) while still being wearable and comfortable, too.
These classic solid suspenders are elastic, and have a great fit with four metal clips that will attach easily to any pants, jeans, or trousers. This is a great versatile pair that you will be able to wear interchangeably to work, around the house, or out with your spouse. They come in a variety of six colors, including neutrals that will complete almost any look. Having multiple color combinations is a great detail as you can choose what suits your wardrobe the best.
They were made with usability in mind, very customer focused. If you need to make a midday adjustment, you can easily slide the two slide clips for further comfort; this feature is a game-changer! These suspenders are marketed as an ideal pair for work or to dress up a casual look. Big and Tall sizes are also available, making these suspenders a great option if necessary.
Other men have commented on what a great bang for their buck this pair is, as well as the heavy-duty feature to truly hold up well overtime.
- Easy to use
- Wide range of colors
- Durability is unmatced
- May not hold up lightweight pants
What You Need To Know
5. Best for Heavy Duty Work: Carhartt Men’s Utility Suspender
Carhartt is one of the most trusted brands for the workforce.
The Carhartt Men’s Utility Suspender is a versatile x-back suspender that is available in a wide array of 10 colors, perfect for men who like to change up their look. With a 2-inch, heavy duty, and elastic suspender straps – they will feel mighty comfortable given the greater distribution of pressure on your shoulders.
The adjustment piece sports the Carharrt logo and is chrome plated – a nice little detail that shares your sense of style.
These suspenders are made in the USA (a rarity in clothing brands these days) and are the perfect pair for heavy duty use.
- Variety of colors
- Made in USA
- Potential clamping mechanism issue
What You Need To Know
6. Best for Tools: Bucket Boss Tool Belt Suspenders
Looking for tool belt suspenders? Bucket Boss has you covered. The company has been in business since 1987; which should give you a feeling of comfort, they are clearly doing something right!
This pair of suspenders is not only highly functional, allowing the wearer to comfortably carry items on them, but they are also perfect for the working man.
These tool belt suspenders have reinforced pouch bottoms and barrel-bottom, oversized pouches. They are made from 600 denier poly ripstop and fit up to a 52” waist. The pouch is also adjustable as well. These are an absolute must have for men who do heavy duty work and need their tools to be accessible at all times.
Many men loved these suspenders as they brought a wide array of both convenience and support – both welcomed in heavy duty work or construction sites.
- Ideal for construction workers
- Durable and functional
- Fits up to 52” waist
- Limited use
What You Need To Know
7. Best for Police Officers: Blackhawk Load Bearing Men’s Suspenders
The BLACKHAWK brand has a unique and impactful story behind their brand.
In the year of 1990, a Navy Seal was in the middle of a minefield, trying to navigate his way out safely. His gear kept tumbling all around him and was truly working against him. After fearing for his life, in some part directly resulting just from poorly made gear, he made a vow that if he ever got out of there alive, he would figure out a way to produce gear the right way; and he did! As a result of his experiences while in the Navy, we now have the BLACKHAWK! brand.
The BLACKHAWK! Load Bearing Suspenders and Harness are a wraparound system sporting an H-Shaped harness. They feature drag handles, a sternum strap, and there are no metal attachment clips.
Other men who have tried out these suspenders are raving about these heavy duty, well-made suspenders.
- Tactical nylon
- Snap closure will stay closed
- Belt loop and harness
- Comfort and ease of wear
- Does not come with a belt, only the suspenders
What You Need To Know
What to Know When Buying Suspenders
When researching a variety of suspenders, we found that there were 9 important considerations that you should be aware of prior to making a purchase.
These are important as they will helpful when you go to compare all the different options out there:
Where do you intend on wearing your suspenders? There are different types for different occasions. Thinking about whether you plan on dressing up, wearing them to work, or throwing them on casually will make all the difference when it comes to purchasing. Here’s a brief overview of each:
- Made from nicer materials to give an overall highly put together look
- For an office setting and appropriate attire for the workplace
- Paired with nice trousers or dress pants to complete an ensemble
- Most commonly used for weddings and formal events
- Decorative rather than functional
- Hipster or smart casual type of look
- Wear casual suspenders appropriately when going on a coffee date or for a fun night out
- Made for utility
- Supports weight (may contain pockets)
- Often wide straps for comfort
2. Type of Suspenders Made
You will want to consider the different types of suspenders as well. There are both button and clip on suspenders and which one you’ll choose depends on personal preference. Historically, button suspenders were used to give off a more polished, high-end look. Clip on suspenders have been more linked to comfort and ease of use.
There are many different materials used for making suspenders. However, we found that the most popular were leather, canvas, and elastic. Here’s a brief look at each and why they might be the perfect pick for your collection:
Leather has options in either full grain, top grain or genuine.
Full Grain: Considered the best, having thick parts of cow hide that last forever when cared for properly. It is worth noting, that some full grain leather may have some slight surface imperfections as this is largely retained as the hide is treated and tanned.
Top Grain: A great alternative to full grain leather will be top grain leather. With a slightly sanded surface, top grain leather removes imperfections on the hide itself. Furthermore, like full grain, top grain leather will develop a nice patina.
Genuine Leather: A true marketing gimmick that causes confusion for many. Genuine leather is a mix between leather bits and a binding agent (glue) – making it just a slight step above cheap bonded leather.
Canvas is great for men who want that more causal and natural look in their style. However, there are a few notable characteristics with this fabric – with the most prominent being the stiffness of the fiber itself. Unlike elastic (covered next), canvas has absolutely no stretch or give. To counteract this, companies use a slide buckle to help adjust to your body.
Elastic, unlike canvas, is primarily stretchable and bends with the body making this type of suspender one of the most comfortable out there. However, elastic will likely stretch over time with heavy use. This is good for those men looking for a suspender to wear infrequently.
4. Strap Adjustments
When it comes to strap adjustments, know that 99.9% of all suspenders have these so there is no worry on looking for this detail.
What you do need to consider is size and style. Be mindful that larger slide fittings are typically more casual and work oriented. Strap adjustments have been designed for functionality over appearance.
The dress strap adjustments are often metallic and much narrower in width-as commonly found on wedding or tuxedo suspenders.
5. Suspender Width
Suspender width can vary between narrow, medium, and wide.
When looking at width, narrow is more situated for smart, casual, or trendy settings, such as a Saturday date night with your significant other.
Medium is often used for either dress or formal occasions. These are most commonly used for weddings, funerals, and galas.
Wide is a bit more comfy, lending themselves to be favored for work and heavy-duty suspenders or even casual use.
So, take a minute to think about the occasions that you will be wearing these suspenders to make sure that they won’t look out of place.
6. Strap Shape
When observing suspender strap shape, take note that there are three options: X-Type, Y-Type, or H-Type.
The X-Type is for casual or work wear. This type provides a casual look, while being supportive and appropriate for the workplace.
Y-Shape has narrower lines than the other two shapes, and is most commonly used for dress wear.
Lastly, the H-Type is not made for dress or casual like X and Y. This type is only found in heavy duty cases like firefighter or police suspenders.
Finding suspenders in a wide array of colors will not be of any concern.
The most common of the colors are black and navy, due to their versatility. Black and navy are both versatile and can be used for a wide array of scenarios. From the workplace to a casual night out, black and navy suspenders are easy to match up with an outfit of your choice.
Patterned and assorted colors stand out-this lowers their ability to be worn daily.
To complete your overall look, try pairing suspenders with a pocket square, belt or shoe color as a way to add more detail to your outfit.
When deciding on which brand of suspenders to purchase, know that the brand is not as important as a functional piece. This serves more as a status symbol, especially when wearing a Y-Type suspender with the logo showing outward.
If quality is what you’re looking for, be sure to concentrate more on the material of your suspenders. For example, choose a full grain leather (considered the premier type) with strong clasps.
Price varies tremendously based on both designer name and the material quality that you choose. Suspenders typically start at or around $10.00 and go up as the quality goes up.
How to Wear Suspenders
Wearing suspenders doesn’t have to be complicated! Follow these three simple steps for a seamless transition to wearing your favorite pair!
1. Fasten Accordingly (With Pants Off)
Prior to putting your pants on, you’ll want to fasten your suspenders to your pants. Be sure to not attach the suspenders to your belt loops! This is a common misconception some men have. You’ll want to fasten them directly onto the back of your trousers.
For X-Back suspenders, the straps should be resting an equal width apart, on either side of your spine.
For Y-Back suspenders, they should be clipped right at the center.
This is a relatively easy process once you get the hang of it!
2. Don’t Wear A Belt
Why wear a belt when you have suspenders?
There is no logical reason to wear both, and in fact, most call this a horrible fashion mistake. Belts and suspenders serve the same purpose, to hold up your pants. You certainly don’t need to wear both!
3. The Three P’s: Put On & Pull Up & Pull Down
The Three P’s of wearing your suspenders are:
- Put on your pants
- Pull the suspenders up and over your shoulders
- Pull down to fasten your front waist band.
If your suspenders form two vertical lines, you got it right!
Be sure they aren’t too tight; suspenders shouldn’t cause you any discomfort. Also, suspenders that are too lose will just continuously cause you issues throughout the day by falling off your shoulders repeatedly.
You can adjust your straps accordingly with the metal slide buckles placed evenly between both straps.
7 Tips On Wearing Your Suspenders Stylishly
Want to show off your style? Here are 7 tips on effortlessly completing your look!
1. Match or Compliment Your Shoes
First, you’ll want the color of your suspenders to either match or compliment your shoes. If you are wearing black shoes, grab your black suspenders. To compliment means the two colors aren’t exactly matching, but they don’t clash. You can wear black, beige or gray if you aren’t totally sure, or are new to trying to coordinate colors-this comes with time!
If you have two shades of brown going on, let’s say your suspenders are slightly lighter than your shoes, that’s okay! Same color family, you won’t look out of the ordinary.
If you are feeling particularly flashy, try contrast your style. Red and Aqua, or Blue and Yellow are both statement contrasting color combinations. Try out reaching for a pair of blue shoes and pair them with yellow suspenders and see what you think!
2. Play Off Your Tie, Pocket Square, or Bowtie Color
Wearing a tie, pocket square, or bowtie? You can make you style pop by pairing it with a complimentary pair of suspenders.
One rule of thumb is: do not match up patterns. While you’d think it to be pleasing, it actually is very confusing to the eye.
If your bowtie is patterned, grab a pair of solid suspenders. This is much more aesthetically pleasing.
A quick tip: pick up a black and white polka-dot bow tie and pair it with solid black suspenders. You’ll have an effortlessly cool finished look.
3. Coordinate With Your Other Clothing and Accessories (Pants, Shirt, Hats)
Another stylish tip is to coordinate your suspenders with your accessories.
Are you sporting tie clips or cufflinks? Why not try coordinating your suspenders to your shirt or pants?
This easy-to-follow step will be sure to turn heads. As stated above, do not clash patterns. Go for complimentary colors. If you have any doubts, just play it safe and wear like colors.
4. Wearing The Right Type of Pants
Notoriously, suspenders have been worn with pants that do not have belt loops. It can look a bit awkward to have empty belt loops while wearing your suspenders. This is the unique thing about suspenders, no belt loops are required.
At times, suspenders can be a bit finicky with dress pants. Be sure to pick some up that do not have the belt loops because it gives a cleaner overall appearance.
Are you just going to work in a casual office? You can get away with wearing suspenders with belt loops for a casual occasion.
5. Suspenders Not Always Shown
Wearing suspenders isn’t always a fashion statement. You can actually wear them underneath your clothes, too. They don’t always have to be out on display for the whole world to see.
Remember the old school cool guys of the early 1900s?
They often wore suspenders under their dress shirt (between their undershirt and dress shirt).
Your suspenders will still provide you with the same support and function but they won’t be noticeable to others.
6. Caring For Them Properly
Not sure about the proper care of your suspenders? We’ve got you covered.
For canvas material, these are safe to run through the washer if you acquire stains, or if signs of wear accumulate. Be sure to not put them through the dryer though, as this can warp the elastic band. If at all possible, try a spot cleaner first.
When dealing with leather material, follow the proper leather care instructions, especially for full or top grain leather. You should clean these regularly with your other leather goods. Make sure you are cleaning, conditioning, and protecting.
7. Ideal Buckle Placement
If you reference the above, when we talked about the proper way to wear suspenders, you will need to make sure your suspenders are even and place the clasps right around the middle of your torso.
If you have your placement too high or too low, you run the risk of having an overall sloppy look.
Can you wear suspenders with jeans?
You can wear suspenders with jeans specifically in a heavy duty work scenario. However, fashion forward men, or hipsters, typically use suspenders for a fashion accessory as well. This is okay, even if the denim has belt loops.
This is a by-choice decision. It depends on the look you are going for.
Have you ever seen Jeremiah Fraites of the Lumineers?
He has flawlessly executed this look by pairing his suspenders with a hat, complimentary pants, and a contrasting shirt.
Can you wear a belt with suspenders?
Wearing a belt with suspenders is an extreme fashion faux pas. Simply just don’t do this.
Choose one or the other, a belt or suspenders, to complete your look. Keep in mind that historically the suspender was functionally replaced by the belt.
How tight should suspenders be?
Suspenders should never cause you any sort of discomfort, and if they do, you may be wearing them wrong.
To test this out, you should be able to comfortably put a hand underneath and pull away from your body about an inch or two.
If you have them overly tight it can restrict your movement. Overly loose will cause the constant annoyance of them slipping off your shoulders.
You just need to play around with the suspenders and adjust until you find the best fit for your body.
Are suspenders better than belts?
If we’re talking about functionality, yes. Suspenders are better than belts.
Suspenders provide for total support with 3 or 4 points of contact with your waistband, while at the same time counteracts the force of gravity.
Like many other fashion pieces and trends, this is dictated by a major conflict. During WW1, suspenders fell out of popularity with men. Men got accustomed to wearing belts while serving during the war as they were a standard part of the uniform.
Unfortunately, suspenders never really made a comeback after that just due to the lifestyle changes that occurred.
Where do people often buy suspenders?
While we linked to many great retailers where people often buy suspenders, we wanted to share with you a more of a formal list that you might want to check out. Below you will see we bucketed two categories – online retailers and direct:
Here’s a list of each:
Often when you shop directly from the company, you may have a good chance at scoring a deal or two as they won’t have to pay the retailer overhead. Furthermore, if you enjoy seeing deals directly in your inbox, you can often sign up for their email list as a great way to score instant savings.
Lastly, if you are shopping close to a holiday or simply a change in season, you might find some great suspenders in their clearance section.
What are the best shirts to wear with suspenders?
It all depends on intent here.
If you are going for a casual look, some people will pair their suspenders with a soft and comfortable flannel shirt.
However, if you are looking to wear your suspenders to the office, then a nice crisp non-iron dress shirt will be the obvious choice.
Of course, no matter the intent of why you are wearing your suspenders, it important that they are worn properly and are hanging off your shoulder.
Can you wear suspenders with shorts?
While some styles may be a bit more prevalent than others, some men can (and do) pull of the suspenders and shorts look. It’s once of those styles that you have to be careful with though.
You don’t want to look like you are wearing Lederhosen.
What are some accessories that are a good idea to pair with suspenders?
When it comes to finding the perfect accessories for your suspender, we recommend checking out either bow ties or tie clips. They do a great job at providing a nice balance to the viewers eye while also looking dapper. What also makes this a nice addition to your style is that its extremely easy to execute and requires no advanced fashion skills.
Suspenders vs. The Alternatives
We’d like to highlight just a few differences between suspenders, belts, and braces.
Suspenders are now typically associated with dress or formal fashion, being a sought-after accessory.
They still have their place in the heavy-duty workplace setting for their support and functionality.
Suspenders provide much better support for wearing pants in general and are favored by men of all sizes, big and tall guys as well.
A major benefit of suspenders is they improve posture naturally and give you a thinner looking profile overall.
Belts are more efficient to put on and adjust, taking less time than suspenders and lend to a much simpler process overall. This is one of the reasons they became so popular during WW1.
They require less craftsmanship to produce and have a greater variety on the market today given their wide adaption.
You should always research the proper belt to wear with your outfit. We have a helpful article on the best belts for men that you should also check out.
Braces is the British word for suspenders, to put it simply.
Some big fanatics of braces say that braces are technically only leather suspenders with buttons instead of clasps.
Our Criteria for Choosing the Best Suspenders
Choosing the best suspenders was difficult!
There are a wide variety of brands, material used, and types that we had to select from. When considering the best suspenders for men, we objectively researched in an unbiased manner. It is our priority to take into account the different features that each of the choices has and put together this list so you can find the perfect pair of suspenders for yourself without spending days looking online!
After we carefully read through reviews and weeded through forums with comments from users, we feel extremely confident that each of the suspenders reviewed in this guide are fantastic options for just about any man reading.
Our hope is that this guide on suspenders is able to lend a hand to you when choosing your next pair!