Best Tactical Belts (& Setups) For Extreme Combat

By "Just In Case" Jack | Updated: 05/07/2023

Today I’ve got something really important to share…

A Complete Guide To Finding & Setting Up A Tactical Belt

Because belts are not as straightforward as they seem…

Sure, many are fantastic and worth your hard-earned dollars.

But some are complete trash you’ll want to avoid at all costs.

But I will navigate the confusion to find the right one for YOU.

And show you the best way to set it up for maximum effectiveness…

TOPICS IN THIS GUIDE…    ↓(click to jump)
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Best Tactical Belts On The Market Today

After much research, here are some of the best belts on the market today:

1.
5.11 Tactical Men's TDU Work Belt

5.11 is one of the biggest names in tactical gear, and its equipment has a loyal following.

The TDU belt is an excellent example of a simple upgrade that checks all the boxes.

It’s low profile and comfortable.

It has a heavy-duty non-metallic buckle that won’t slow you down during air travel.

It also features very modern styling.

Making this belt a perfect choice for everyday wear, both on the range and in the office.

PROS
  • Low profile design
  • Non-metallic buckle
  • Inexpensive
  • Lightweight
CONS
  • Can roll or curl under heavy loads
  • Sizes run small, by as much as two sizes
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↓ 5.11 TDU Belt Review

2.
BLACKHAWK CQB/Rigger's Belt

Blackhawk is another well-respected tactical gear brand.

And their CQB Riggers Belt is a heavy-duty piece of equipment.

As a rigger belt, it’s both lightweight and straightforward.

And it includes an integrated belay or rappelling loop (neatly stowed with a velcro tab).

And let’s not forget the high-quality military-grade buckles.

The nylon webbing is rated at 7000 lbs!

Despite this incredible rating, it breaks in over time and becomes very comfortable.

The large tactical buckle and military styling make it stand out in a casual setting.

So it’s not the most discreet belt option.

PROS
  • Very durable
  • Incredible tensile strength
  • Breaks in comfortably
CONS
  • Styling is rough
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↓ Review Of The BlackHawk Riggers Belt

3.
FAIRWIN Military Style Webbing Riggers Belt

Here’s one of the few belts to feature military quick-release buckle fittings.

The Fairwin Military Style Belt is incredibly secure and easy to pop on and off.

These are similar buckles that military medevac choppers use to secure injured subjects.

It makes an exceptional gun belt or duty belt for medium loads.

But you may want a stiffer material if you have a large handgun in a side holster.

Also, it's not the easiest to use with concealed carry holsters, but it’s not impossible.

One last note, the buckle is large, making it a challenge to get through the belt loops of casual wear pants.

PROS
  • Affordable
  • Durable military design
  • Lifetime warranty and customer support
CONS
  • Military styling stands out in casual settings
  • The large buckle makes it challenging to get through small belt loops
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↓ Fairwin Tactical Riggers Belt Review

4.
Condor Tactical Belt Coyote Brown

The Condor Belt is a highly reviewed belt at an affordable price.

It features a comfortable, wide profile and a quick-release buckle.

This specialty buckle allows you to get it on and off fast.

However, it’s more of a duty belt - so it won’t fit through the belt loops of most pants.

Finally, it includes two horizontal carry magazine pouches and keeper tabs.

PROS
  • Quick-release tactical belt buckle
  • Comfortable
  • Integrated magazine pouches
CONS
  • Overly aggressive military styling
  • Will not fit through belt loops
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↓ Condor Tactical Belt – It’s So Cheap…

5.
Relentless -The Ultimate Concealed Carry Leathe Belt

If you prefer the look of a leather belt, the Ultimate CCW Gun Belt from Relentless Tactical is a great choice.

It’s not much different in appearance from a regular leather belt, so it fits well in everyday settings.

But it’s highly rated for both open and concealed carry.

This makes it a very valuable addition to anyone's gear setup.

Due to the internal stiffeners and high-quality leather, it doesn’t stretch much.

This lack of stretch can feel stiff and uncomfortable until you get used to it.

PROS
  • Looks great
  • Well suited for CC
  • Very durable, high-quality leather
CONS
  • It does not stretch or break-in
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↓ Unboxing: Ultimate Conceal Carry Belt From Relentless

6.
5.11 Tactical Alta Belt, Coyote

Another solid belt from 5.11, the Alta, is one of the better-looking riggers belts on the market.

The webbing is wide (as are most riggers belts). But this belt still fits within the belt loops of most tactical pants and jeans.

Though it’s likely too large for typical office wear.

PROS
  • Good styling
  • V-ring for carabiner attachment in rappelling
  • Military-grade hardware and webbing
CONS
  • Sizes run small
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7.
WOLF TACTICAL Heavy Duty Quick-Release EDC Belt

The Wolf Tactical Heavy Duty EDC Belt is a simple, minimalist belt.

But this streamlined belt is still a durable build.

The Cobra buckle is fast and secure.

But yet easy to operate and functions even if mud or snow gets into the mechanism.

The buckle won’t fit through most belt loops like most similar belts.

But you can easily remove the tactical buckle and re-attach it once it's through the loops.

However, this process adds some time, but it's not too bad once you have it re-attached.

PROS
  • Super clean look
  • Fast-release belt buckle
  • Wide, double-layer nylon supports heavy loads
CONS
  • The buckle is too large for belt loops
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↓ Wolf Tactical EDC Belt – Is It Worth It?

8.
Condor Gen II Battle Belt Black

The Gen II battle belt from Condor is perfect if you want to keep all your gear rigged but don’t plan to carry it daily.

It’s built for extremely heavy loads and adds plenty of padding and support to keep you comfortable all day.

Two rows of webbing loops and 4 D-rings offer lots of attachment points.

It’s also compatible with a drop-leg holster.

However, you must add your own duty or rigger belt to keep it up.

But that also allows you to choose the best one for your situation.

I like the combination of a minimalist riggers belt with the Gen II.

This combo provides both strength/rope access AND load-carrying capabilities.

PROS
  • Heavy-duty construction
  • Lots of load-handling options
  • Extra padding contoured for mobility
CONS
  • The belt is not included, so there are additional costs
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↓ Condor Battle Belt Review And How I Setup Mine

9.
Elite Survival Systems Cobra Rigger's with D Ring

The Elite Survival Cobra Riggers belt is another minimalist design.

But with the added benefit of a genuine Cobra fast-release tactical buckle.

Other companies have tried to imitate this belt, but the original is the best, with a load rating of 4000 lbs!

The buckle features an integrated D-ring for rigging.

This feature makes for a more streamlined design than other options.

PROS
  • Genuine Cobra Belt buckle
  • High-strength D-ring for rigging
  • Comfortable, with an internal stiffener to prevent twisting or binding
CONS
  • Another buckle too big for pant loops
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↓ SOE D Ring Buckle Riggers Belt

10.
5.11 Women's Tactical Belt 1.25'' Kella

Most belts are unisex in their design.

But 5.11 has a line of women’s tactical gear, including the Kella women's tactical belt.

It features all the same technical touches as the 5.11 TDU men’s belt.

This includes high-strength webbing, a non-metallic buckle, and heavy-duty construction.

However, the smaller width may cause it to dig in a bit under the most massive loads.

But it holds up fine under normal conditions.

PROS
  • Heavy-duty construction
  • Non-metallic buckle
  • Comfortable
  • Inexpensive
CONS
  • Polyester-cotton blend webbing can absorb water
  • Narrower profile
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11.
Loopbelt No Scratch Reversible Web Belt

The Loopbelt is designed to meet the demands of tough environments.

First and foremost, the No-Scratch Web Belt is constructed from high-quality materials. Its webbing is crafted from a rugged nylon blend, ensuring it can handle the harshest conditions without fraying or tearing.

What sets the Loopbelt apart is its rubber-coated tips.

These specially designed tips prevent any scratches or damage to your gear.

Now, let's talk about the advanced hook and loop fasteners.

The Loopbelt utilizes a hook and loop closure system, allowing quick and secure adjustments. Need to loosen or tighten your belt? No problem!

The hook and loop fasteners make it a breeze to find the perfect fit.

One of the greatest advantages of the Loopbelt is its versatility. It's not just a belt; it's a survival tool in disguise. The hook and loop system allows you to attach various accessories and pouches, giving you easy access to your gear on the go.

It's all about being prepared for whatever challenges come your way.

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↓ LoopBelt With Hook & Loop System

What Is A “Tactical” Belt & Why You Need One

It’s NOT a simple strip of leather or nylon belt worn “just” to keep your pants up.

No, that’s a nearly useless belt we all take for granted.

Useless? Not entirely, but a belt should do so much more than just pants around your waist.

For example, what if you’re required to carry heavy tactical gear for your job?

Or what if you haul around critical items daily, and they must be instantly accessible and secure?

This is when it’s time to upgrade and invest in a tactical one!

At first glance, it’s similar in form and function to a standard utility belt.

Both tactical and utility belts keep your pants up and allow you to carry some extra gear.

It’s quite easy to confuse the two styles.

That’s why checking a belt’s specifications and materials is important.

Most utility belts only include single-layered webbing.

Typically woven from either cotton or nylon.

They also tend to have a simple buckle design.

And hence, they carry far less weight.

A tactical belt has a much more robust build from the start.

Why? Because it must provide as much durability and support as possible.

It must be able to carry several pieces of vital gear, such as:

All without drooping or curling.

It must be tough enough to stand up to that load daily on patrol.

But the load-carrying capacity means NOTHING if it’s not comfortable.

And not just comfortable when walking about…

It must also be comfortable while chasing down a suspect or crawling to cover in a prone position.

Some belts go even further by providing specific attachment points or pouches.

For example, some are MOLLE compatible, while others provide dedicated holster attachments.

Some belts even feature integrated D-rings for carabiner attachment points.

This turns the belt into an improvised rappelling harness for technical rope access!

The bottom line is:

They’re an excellent upgrade to something you wear daily.

And it’s a good investment even if you don’t carry heavy gear on your belt.

Why? Because, as a prepared citizen, a good belt is an integral part of your EDC kit.

It allows you to take EDC gear with you every day with ease.

This provides you with an exceptional tactical advantage.

You gain the ability to spring into immediate action if things take a turn for the worse.

This kind of preparation is one of my favorite ways to prepare myself for any situation.

Carrying high-quality gear around daily without anyone noticing.

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Military Tactical Belt

Types Of Combat Belts

There’s a wide range of combat belt styles available.

Each one has its design focus on a particular set of needs.

So deciding which belt is right for you can initially be overwhelming.

That’s why it’s best to focus on the most likely situations you may find yourself in and plan accordingly.

Gun Belts

The modern gun belt is one of the most common types.

Soldiers and law enforcement wear these.

These are a far cry from the oiled leather belts of Hollywood Westerns.

But they serve the same purpose – safely and comfortably carrying a sidearm.

Different holster designs will determine where and how to attach to the belt.

And supporting a sidearm calls for a wide belt with a stiffer, thicker profile.

It also must resist curling under the weight of the holstered weapon.

They succeed by adding several layers of thick internal stiffeners to the webbing.

These stiffeners help the belt hold its shape under years of daily use.

But it may not always be the most comfortable.

Nonetheless, if keeping your sidearm in place is a priority, a tactical gun belt will be your best choice.

Duty Belts

Like gun belts, duty belts can carry a ton of stuff.

Law enforcement officers must carry extra equipment on their belts.

Typical items they carry are a gun, extra ammo, keys, handcuffs, flashlights, and a baton.

This belt setup calls for a broad, thick, stiff construction that’s part of a typical gun belt.

But a duty belt doesn’t usually only feature attachment points at holster locations.

Instead, duty belts can carry equipment at nearly any point along the length of the belt!

Increasing its ability to carry even more tactical items.

Instructor & Rigger Belts

If carrying a gun isn’t your primary concern, instructors or riggers belt might work best for you.

These are durable nylon webbing belts built with a heavy-duty buckle.

And these can support far more than the weight of a single person.

Or they can serve as a lightweight and improvised rappelling harness.

Instructors belts are primarily for non-load bearing uses in high-angle (climbing) training.

These provide support and balance while training others.

And rigger belts feature a dedicated D-ring attachment for carabiners and rappelling devices.

Note: NEVER try to make an instructor’s belt; do what a rigger’s can.

It’s not safe.

Battle Belts

Battle belts combine a duty belt and a tactical gear-carrying system.

They include more support, padding, and attachment points.

They commonly tie into suspenders or plate carrier vests.

This setup provides even more load-carrying capacity and keeps the weight off your hips.

Many examples come without a duty belt.

This setup allows you to choose your favorite belt buckle type.

They’re great options if you want to extend the amount of gear (or time) you can comfortably carry.

The only downside to this setup is it’s NOT inconspicuous!

So be ready for questioning glances if you wear a battle belt out in public.

Web Belts

Web belts are often considered an inexpensive belt upgrade.

They tend to be more comfortable but have the least carrying capacity.

However, they’re VERY suitable for concealed carry situations.

Why? Because they draw the least attention due to their casual styling.

Best Tactical Belt Features To Look For

With so many durable belts on the market, finding the right one can be overwhelming.

But choosing the right belt is governed by some of the same factors as any other tactical gear.

Equipment/Use

They’re, first and foremost, meant to carry gear.

So it’s important to plan what you’ll be attaching to it ahead of time.

Then buy one that fits the use and the specific equipment necessary to get the job done.

Material Type

The selection of material is one of the most critical choices.

You need a belt with the right material suitable for the tasks.

Most incorporate either leather or nylon webbing.

Leather is more stylish and can be paired with dress uniforms and other formal attire.

But it’s often stiffer and requires more care and maintenance.

Nylon and synthetic webbing are more flexible and can withstand heavy use (and abuse).

But it definitely “looks” more tactical, which isn’t always the best for keeping a low profile.

Comfort

Along with the material choice, the next primary concern is comfort.

Remember, you’ll be carrying heavy tactical or military equipment for hours.

So any discomfort will be magnified, leaving you counting the minutes until you can take it off.

This distraction can take your eyes off the task, which is never a good idea!

Belt Width & Thickness

The width and thickness go a long way to determining its effectiveness.

A thin belt may not stand up to the weight of a heavy load.

Plus, it will eventually begin to curl and sag.

But one that’s too thick will limit the connection options for holsters and gear.

A wide belt may make it harder to get the belt through the loops of your pants!

But a belt that’s too narrow can dig into your hips and cause discomfort.

Finding the right balance in thickness will help with comfort, capacity, and durability.

Price

Of course, price plays a role in any gear selection.

Luckily, even high-quality belts are not a massive investment.

But as usual, expect to pay more for leather belts due to the material cost.

Nylon, on the other hand, can be relatively inexpensive.

Many of the most popular models are under $50.

It’s hard to beat that for a piece of clothing that holds up your lifesaving tactical gear.

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Best Military Belt Setups

I’ll be honest; a good belt setup video is worth a thousand words.

So instead of trying to describe all the different setups and the pros/cons of each, I’m going to share a few videos:

↓ How To Setup Your War Belt

↓ Range Belt Setup | Safe Life Defense

↓ “Gunfighter” Belt Setup | First Line Gear

Final Thoughts

A belt is an essential piece of survival gear.

You should own one regardless of whether you wear it daily or not.

Why? Because it allows you to wear one and gear up in certain high-risk situations – such as during a bug-out.

And you may want to own more than one.

Different styles lend themselves to a wide range of scenarios.

So you may want to pick up a couple of models to suit your needs.

When it comes time to keep up more than just your pants, you’ll be glad you have a tactical belt!

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