Woman modeling suspenders and striped pants

Are Suspenders the Same Thing as Shirt Braces?

Are Suspenders the Same Thing as Shirt Braces?

Suspenders are fairly well-known in the U.S. as a stylish accessory that attaches to the pants and goes over each shoulder. But if you’ve heard some pairs of suspenders referred to as braces, you may be confused; aren’t they actually the same thing? If you’ve ever wondered whether suspenders are braces and vice versa, we’re here to finally give a definitive answer. Check out why there are two different terms and tips for styling each one.

Suspenders vs. Braces

When it comes down to it, all braces are suspenders, but not all suspenders are braces. The term “suspenders” refers to the style accessory that attaches at the waist and slips over each shoulder to help hold the pants in place. “Braces,” on the other hand is a little more specific; this term generally only refers to suspenders with button attachments at the waist. In many cases, these are dressier suspenders made with leather or cloth straps.

Where you’re from can also affect which term you use. Most British and Australian folks say braces, while those from the United States and Canada say suspenders. Even so, you’ll still see braces as a term used almost exclusively for button suspenders as opposed to clip suspenders.

Styling Braces & Suspenders

If you choose to wear braces, you’ll need to have buttons sewn into your pants. This extra step takes some effort, but many people prefer braces because it has an especially sleek and sophisticated look once the straps are attached. Suspenders with clips, on the other hand, can be worn with any type of pants, shorts or skirt, which is a bonus in terms of versatility.

Some people consider wearing a belt with suspenders to be a fashion faux pas. For an especially fashion-forward look, you can even wear pants without belt loops when wearing suspenders. However, if you’re all about comfort and want to wear suspenders with a belt, just be sure they match or complement one another to create a cohesive outfit. You can even wear belt clip suspenders to tie the whole look together.

If you want a subtle, professional style when sporting suspenders, wear a suit jacket or blazer on top. To show off your colorful or novelty suspenders as a style accessory, wear them over a plain button-up shirt.

Use these tips to differentiate between braces and suspenders, and get a stylish look with either one.

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