Do Belts And Shoes Always Have To Match? Yes, Here Are The Colors Of Clothing To Wear With Your Matching Belt & Shoes



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When it comes to business dress and business casual, this should never be in question.

Yes, your belt & shoes must always match!

Following are the acceptable colors of clothing to wear with various belt colors and shoe colors — for business dress, business casual, and everyday casual.

 

Business Dress (Suit and Tie)

Black leather or shoes and matching black leather belt:

  • ALWAYS wear with navy, charcoal, medium gray, silver gray, and black suits.
  • NEVER wear with olive, tan, brown, or any earth-tone suit.

Brown leather shoes and matching brown leather belt:

  • ALWAYS wear with navy, charcoal, medium gray, olive, tan, and brown suits.
  • NEVER wear with a black suit.

Cordovan (burgundy) leather shoes and matching burgundy belt:

  • ALWAYS wear with navy, charcoal, medium gray, and olive suits.
  • NEVER wear with a black suit.

 

Business Casual (Sport Coat and Trouser)

Regardless of the sport coat color or pattern, make sure to match your shoes and belt to your trousers!

Black leather shoes and matching black leather belt:

  • ALWAYS wear with navy, charcoal, medium gray, silver gray, and black trousers.
  • NEVER wear with olive, tan, brown, or any earth-tone trouser.

Brown leather shoes and matching brown leather belt:

  • ALWAYS wear with navy, charcoal, medium gray, olive, tan, and brown trousers.
  • NEVER wear with a black trouser.

Cordovan (burgundy) leather shoes and matching burgundy belt:

  • ALWAYS wear with navy, charcoal, medium gray, and olive trousers.
  • NEVER wear with a black trouser.

 

Everyday Casual (Trousers and Shirt)

Black leather shoes and matching black leather belt:

  • ALWAYS wear with navy, charcoal, medium gray, silver gray, and black trousers.
  • NEVER wear with olive, tan, brown, or any earth-tone trouser.

Brown leather shoes and matching brown leather belt:

  • ALWAYS wear with navy, charcoal, medium gray, olive, tan, and brown trousers.
  • NEVER wear with a black trouser.

Cordovan (burgundy) leather shoes and matching burgundy belt:

  • ALWAYS wear with navy, charcoal, medium gray, and olive trousers.
  • NEVER wear with a black trouser.

 

Jeans and a T-Shirt

WHO CARES!

 

What About Exotic Shoes, Suede Shoes & Spectator Shoes?

mens exotic brown leather shoes & belts
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If you’re purchasing black or brown exotic shoes (like crocodile or alligator shoes) or black or brown suede shoes, make sure to buy a matching belt at the same time:

Then, apply the same principles above when deciding what to wear them with.

The only exception is when you’re wearing spectator shoes — which are normally 2-toned in a classic black & white or brown & white combination.

If a matching belt is not offered:

  • Wear a black solid belt with the black & white spectator shoes.
  • Wear a brown solid belt with the brown & white spectator shoes.
  • If you can’t find a brown belt to match, go with a white solid one.
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Steve Walczak

I've been in the men's clothing business since 1991. My specialty is custom-tailored suits and shirts, as well as men's accessories.

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