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What are the BEST Police Duty Belts? (Ultimate Review Guide)

What are the BEST Police Duty Belts? (Ultimate Review Guide)

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 Brian Humenuk | Author | COPJOT

By Brian Humenuk, MA, COPJOT

Updated on December 30, 2023

5-minute read or less

Law Enforcement Officers are tasked with some of the most difficult jobs in everyday society. Saving lives, arresting lawbreakers, and nearly anything else you can think of.

However.....

Sitting in a patrol car for hours at a time without getting a single call for service can be the norm for many police officers.

So...

Having the right police duty belt needs to be a decision that includes things like comfortable and strong and not just looks.

The right duty belt can also save you a lot of time and aggravation and possibly even save your from serious back problems and constant trips to the chiropractor.

Police Officers in some jurisdictions are allowed to pick and choose duty belts that are right for them.

Other law enforcement officers are not so lucky and their agency policies may dictate the duty belt requirements.

If you are just starting out in your law enforcement career then reading this article and making an informed decision is very important

No matter what your law enforcement experience is, I think we can agree that a duty belt can be tossed on that list of "most important police equipment."

and.....

I know personally because I have been in the daily grind of law enforcement patrol work for over 20 years. As I have aged the selection of my duty belt has changed a bit even though I still want that squared away, crisp, and professional look.

A well-designed duty belt provides essential support for carrying tools and ensures comfort and durability throughout long hours on the job.

When all equipment is accounted for the average police duty belt can weigh over 30 pounds and law enforcement officers will carry that around on their waists for 8-16 hours a day.

In this article, which is an ultimate review guide on the best police duty belts, I will be helping you sort through the nearly 100 duty belts the retail market and provide you with quality information to make an informed decision.

I will get into the top police equipment belt choices that blend:

  • Comfort
  • Toughness
  • Style
  • Looks
  • Material and,
  • Price

COPJOT is supported by its audience. When you make a purchase through links on this site I may earn a small affiliate commission.

I myself have probably bought and wore well over 10 duty belts including the ones on my best of list that we will dive into later in this article.

But if your short on time and want to get right to the list of best police duty belts don’t let the meat and potatoes of this article stand in your way. I get it. Click on the button below to get to the best. 

JUMP TO THE BEST POLICE DUTY BELTS

History of the Police Duty Belt 

The history of the police officer duty belt is closely tied to the evolution of law enforcement equipment and the changing needs of police officers over time.

While the specific design and contents of duty belts have varied, the concept of a specialized belt to carry essential tools has a rich history.

The police officer duty belt has evolved from a makeshift tool carrier to a highly specialized and customizable piece of equipment.

In the early days of modern policing, officers often relied on personal equipment, and there was no standardized way to carry tools.

Law enforcement officers commonly used items like capes and long coats to conceal and carry their weapons.

With the professionalization of police forces in the late 19th century, there was a move toward standardization of equipment.

Leather belts began to be adopted, featuring slots or loops to carry items such as batons, handcuffs, and firearms.

As police equipment continued to evolve, so did the duty belt. The design became more structured and tailored to accommodate specific tools.

Revolvers and batons were often carried in leather holsters and holders attached to the belt.

The history reflects the ongoing efforts to provide law enforcement officers with the tools they need in a manner that is functional, comfortable, and adapted to the demands of their profession.

As law enforcement continues to evolve, so will the design and features of the police duty belt.

Sam Browne Belt for Police 

The Sam Browne duty belt is rich in history and tradition. It is named after British General Sir Samuel James Browne, who served during the 19th century.

General Browne designed this distinctive belt to provide a solution for carrying a sword and other essential items while maintaining a professional and organized appearance.

Over time, the Sam Browne belt became a symbol of authority and honor, making its way into various uniformed services, including the police.

The Sam Browne belt's design reflects a commitment to discipline, order, and authority within law enforcement.

The Sam Browne belts are typically made of leather and feature a wide strap that crosses over the right shoulder, the belt is secured around the waist.

The diagonal strap, seen a lot on state troopers and honor guard uniforms, not only supports the weight of the equipment but also adds a sense of formality and presence to the officer or troopers’ uniform.

The brass fittings on the Sam Browne belt, such as the buckle and attachments for accessories, symbolize professionalism and adherence to a code of conduct.

The belt's distinctive appearance has made it a recognizable symbol of law enforcement authority around the world, instilling confidence in the public and conveying a sense of order.

Police duty belt leather vs nylon 

First, I want to caution you about the fact that many law enforcement agencies have language in their uniform and equipment policies and procedures citing the specific material and even model of the duty belt and equipment a police officer must use.

So, before spending your money on a duty belt and tools to go on it check your agency's policies and procedures first.

With that said, I prefer the professional look of a non-glossy leather duty belt over a nylon one.

I may be from an older generation of police officers, but I have always thought a leather duty belt looks better and when maintained properly they hold their professional look longer.

Leather duty belts have long been a symbol of classic professionalism in law enforcement. They also can mold to the officer’s body for a comfortable fit.

My personal favorite non-glossy leather duty belt is the Safariland black leather duty belt which can be found here.

This duty belt is made from such quality leather that it can potentially last you 10 years or more with regular cleaning, maintenance, and buckle replacement.

The buckles themselves are replaceable and come in silver/chrome, gold or black. Solid Brass Sam Browne buckle replacements can be found here.

Spills and stains are hard to get off of a nylon duty belt, but they easily wipe right off of a leather belt and then a shoeshine sponge can be applied.

What are the Best Police Duty Belts

The best police duty belt for quality, fit, price and style is the Bianchi 7960 Sam Browne 2.25 in duty belt

Best Police Duty Belts

Leather Police Duty Belts

Leather police duty belts are popular for their timeless combination of durability, professionalism, and classic looks.

One of the primary advantages is the superior longevity that leather provides, ensuring that these belts withstand the daily wear and tear of law enforcement duties.

The natural flexibility of leather molds to the wearer's body over time, enhancing comfort without sacrificing the necessary support for carrying essential equipment.

 Additionally, leather's resistance to extreme weather conditions and its ability to age gracefully make it a great choice for police officers seeking reliability and a traditional, sophisticated look in their duty gear.

 

Best Plain Black Leather Police Duty Belt

Best High Gloss Leather Police Duty Belt

Best Basketweave Leather Police Duty Belt

Nylon Duty Belt for Police 

Nylon duty belts stand out as an excellent choice for police officers due to their versatile and durable nature.

The inherent strength of nylon ensures that these belts can withstand the rigors of daily law enforcement activities, providing long-lasting reliability.

Additionally, nylon duty belts are lightweight, offering comfort during extended periods of wear. Their adjustable and customizable features make them adaptable to individual preferences and various equipment needs for both patrol and specialty assignments.

The water-resistant properties of nylon further contribute to its appeal, making it suitable for diverse weather conditions.

Best Nylon Police Duty Belt

What is a lightweight police duty belt?

Nylon duty belts are representative of their lightweight design and exceptional strength. They also feel less rigid than their leather counterparts. Arranging and rearranging equipment can also be a breeze on a nylon duty belt.

My recommendation for best nylon duty belt is the Bianchi Accumold 7200 black nylon duty belt

Most comfortable police duty belt 

When considering a duty belt that is most comfortable, it's essential to try it on and evaluate how well it distributes weight, how easily it adjusts to your body shape, and whether it accommodates your specific gear configuration.

Reading reviews from other law enforcement professionals who have similar needs and preferences can also be beneficial.

Be sure to check your agency’s policies and procedures first before selecting and buying a duty belt that is comfortable to you.

What is the best police duty belt for backpain? 

There is no straightforward answer to what duty belt is best for back pain. My advice to you is to choose a belt that is adjustable to your body size and shape. Having the ability to customize the fit can make a significant difference in reducing discomfort.

Nylon Accumold duty belts can be adjusted to many more sizes than belts with buckles and notches.

This is important because if you have back pain, wearing a duty belt that is too small or too loose may contribute to back pain so a Nylon belt can be adjusted to just the right size.

Best police duty belt setup 

Whether you are just breaking into the police profession, are a patrol officer or a seasoned law enforcement veteran there are many schools of thought when it comes to setting up a duty belt. 

I believe this question is best answered by a visual presentation so a video would be appropriate at this junction.

The following video will give you a few schools of thought about where equipment should go on a police duty belt and why. 

How to clean and maintain a police duty belt?

Proper maintenance is essential to extend the lifespan of a duty belt. The following will ensure duty belt longevity and top performance when you need it.

Understand Your Duty Belt Components

Before diving into the cleaning process, it's important to understand the different components of your duty belt. This typically includes a holster, magazine pouches, handcuff case, baton holder, radio holder, and sometimes additional pouches for accessories. Each component has unique cleaning requirements.

Establish a Regular Cleaning Routine

Regular maintenance is key to preserving the lifespan of your duty belt. Develop a routine for cleaning and inspecting your equipment.

Aim for at least once a month, or more frequently if you work in harsh conditions. A clean and well-maintained duty belt not only looks professional but also ensures that your gear functions as intended when you need it most.

Remove Dirt and Debris

Start by removing any dirt, dust, or debris from your duty belt. Use a soft brush or cloth to gently wipe away surface dirt. Pay close attention to crevices and seams where dirt tends to accumulate. A small, soft brush, like a toothbrush, can be useful for getting into tight spaces.

Cleaning Leather Components

If your duty belt has leather components, it's important to clean and condition them regularly. Use a mild soap to remove dirt and stains.

After cleaning, apply a leather conditioner like MEKER Mink Oil to keep the leather supple and prevent it from drying out or cracking.

Police Duty Belt Cleaner and Conditioner

After you thoroughly clean your duty belt you will want touch up any worn spots with shoe polish liquid.

I like to cover the entire face of my duty belt with KIWI black liquid polish and I also keep a KIWI black express shine sponge in my duty bag.

Police duty belt maintenance

Police duty belt maintenance

Maintaining Nylon and Synthetic Components

For nylon or synthetic components, a mixture of mild soap and water is usually sufficient. Wipe down the surfaces with a damp cloth, paying attention to any stains or sticky residues. Avoid using harsh chemicals that may damage the material.

Inspect Buckles and Fasteners

Check all buckles, snaps, and fasteners for signs of wear or damage. Ensure that they are functioning properly and securely holding your equipment in place. Replace any damaged or worn-out components promptly to maintain the integrity of your duty belt.

Concerning leather duty belts if you do not inspect the buckles they will fail at any moment. Replace them at the earliest sign of being bent, the pins being worn, or after a few years of service.

Benefits to wearing Police Duty Belt Suspenders

Understanding the Strain

Carrying a fully loaded duty belt for extended periods can lead to discomfort, fatigue, and even long-term health issues.

The strain on the lower back and hips is a common concern among police officers. Duty belt suspenders are designed to address this issue by providing additional support and distributing the weight more evenly across the officer's body.

Benefits of Duty Belt Suspenders

Weight Distribution

Suspenders help distribute the weight of the duty belt and its contents, reducing the strain on the lower back and hips. This can significantly enhance an officer's comfort during long shifts.

Improved Posture

By providing additional support, duty belt suspenders encourage better posture, preventing slouching or leaning forward. Maintaining proper posture is not only more comfortable but also contributes to overall health.

Enhanced Mobility

With the weight of the duty belt more evenly distributed, officers often experience improved mobility and agility. This is particularly crucial in situations where quick and precise movements are required.

Reduced Fatigue

The reduced strain on the lower back and hips translates to less fatigue over the course of a shift. Officers can maintain higher levels of alertness and performance, especially during extended periods of duty.

Choosing the Right Duty Belt Suspenders

Material

Duty belt suspenders are typically made from durable materials such as nylon or polyester. Look for adjustable and breathable options to ensure a comfortable fit.

Attachment Points

Suspenders should have secure attachment points for connecting to the duty belt. Choose suspenders with sturdy clips or loops that can withstand the weight of your gear.

Adjustability

Opt for suspenders with adjustable straps to customize the fit according to your body shape and personal preferences. Proper adjustment ensures optimal weight distribution.

Best Police Duty Belt Suspenders

The MELOTOUGH metal hook duty belt tactical suspenders are a customer favorite amongst reviews. They appear to be a second generation with upgraded metal hooks. 

Best Police Duty Belt Reddit

If you are looking for more information than I was able to provide to you or you are looking to see what other law enforcement officers are saying about the best duty belts for police officers, I recommend that you head over to reddit and read a few threads on duty belts. 

About the Author

Brian Humenuk isn't just an entrepreneur in eCommerce, he is also an informed leader whose experience provides followers and visitors with a look into current and past police issues making headlines in the United States.

Brian has earned three degrees in Criminal Justice with the last, a Masters of Science in Criminal Justice Administration.

Brian extends his training, education, and experience to the officers just now getting into the field so that they may become more informed police officers and stay clear of police misconduct and corruption. 

You can find Brian on Linkedin here.

More Information

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