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How to Tighten Pants Without Belt: Step-By-Step

Have you ever had a pair of pants that fit your figure but are a bit too big at the waist? Or maybe you lost some weight so now your pants don’t quite fit you like they used to? Either way, you found yourself in a situation where you need to tighten your pants, but let’s say that you don’t like the look of bunchy material that clinching your belt gives your crotch area, or maybe your favorite belt broke. What can you do in this situation?

The obvious answer is, of course, to take them to get professionally tailored, but this can be expensive and not everyone has the time for it. That’s why in this article we will show you a few ways to tighten your pants without using a belt.

Tips on Tightening Your Pants Without a Belt

Try shrinking your pants with heat

If your pants are just a little too big you can throw them in the washing machine at high temperature, when you get them out they will be a bit tighter. However, this method does not last and your pants will go back to their original size once you wear them for longer. Also, they will shrink everywhere, not just the waist so keep that in mind.

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Use clips

If you are in a hurry you can always just use clips or bobby pins for a fast solution. This works best if you want an easy fix for a few moments, however, you don’t want to be walking around town with clips on your pants because you will probably end up losing them along the way. The way this works is by pinching your waistband, making sure that it fits you, and clinching in the excess material with a clip or bobby pin from the inside. You can put the clip on any side of the waistband but it would probably look best if you do it on the back of your pants. If this looks too crunchy try pinching on the sides where the pockets would be located.

Stich an extra button

If your pants already have a button you can try moving it a bit further out, or just stitch another one next to it. Even if you have never sowed a single stitch in your life, you got this, you just need to follow a few easy steps. First thread your needle, then make a double knot at one end, this will be where your thread will end so make sure it is long enough to secure the button in place. Make sure to measure before this by putting on your pants and marking the place where you should put the button. After this just put the needle through the marking, making sure the knot is on the inside, slide the button on the thread and secure it in place on the fabric by pushing the needle through the holes. To finish just tie another knot inside the waistband to knot off your thread and prevent unrevealing.

The belt loop trick

This trick is similar to the extra button one written above but it will come in handy if you don’t have an extra button or a needle on hand. Just take the button you already have and instead of only putting it through the hole meant for it, put it through the loop for the belt first and then through the hole to close up your pants. Make sure to flatten down any rushing that may accrue due to the fabric being clinched together

Replace the waistband with an elastic one

If you are the in process of losing weight elastic is the way to go. An elastic waistband is very adjustable and as far as comfort goes, way more pleasant than a harsh belt. If you want to do this by yourself it will require a sewing machine, however, it is a very affordable and easy solution. Just make a hole in your waistband, measure well, and add the elastic inside, after just sew it shut and you have yourself a pair of pants that fit perfectly. The downside to this can be that pants with an elastic waist can be a bit more on the casual side, so keep that in mind.

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Sew the waistband

This is another example where a sewing machine will come in handy. I have seen many people sewing their waistbands, which also works but bare in mind that it’s a permanent solution even though it works. Start by turning your pants inside out and putting them on. Bunch up the loose fabric making sure you have equal parts of material on both sides and secure it with pins or clips. Take your pants off and mark the line you want to sew using a piece of white chalk, set up your sewing machine with a matching thread, and start sewing. After the waistband is tightened just cut off the excess material using fabric scissors.


If all else fails or you simply don’t want to alter your pants in any other way just use suspenders. Suspenders are an old-fashioned way to make your pants stay up. They have little clips at the end of them that clinch to your waistline, holding your pants from the back and front. However, this solution might not work with all kinds of pants. Let’s say you have sweatpants on, suspenders might look a bit odd, but to each their own. We personally recommend you wear suspenders with more formal-looking pants. If you don’t like the look of suspenders you can try the hikers’ hidden suspenders that go under your shirt. This solution is very cost-effective because most suspenders are sold for less than 10 dollars.

Use an alternative to a belt

If you don’t mind the look of a belt, but simply don’t have one on hand, try putting something else through the loops. If you are going for a casual look you can simply put on a shoelace and tie it in the front, or use a colorful scarf and do the same. You can also do this with a chain or any type of string you find around you.

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Final Thoughts

You can tighten your pants up without using a belt in many different ways, which one you choose is completely up to you and the type of pants you want to wear. Whether you choose to get suspenders or use a shoelace, either way, your pants are staying up.