harbinger padded leather lifting belt review

Harbinger Padded Leather Lifting Belt Review

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Harbinger is a very popular company among lifters, known for the affordable yet quality fitness accessories provided over the years. The company was founded more than 30 years ago by David McCrane and has slowly built its way to today’s level by understanding what customers need. The brand offers a wide range of products, such as gloves, straps, wraps, weight vests, and lifting belts. Both advanced lifters and casual gym-goers can find items appropriate to their level of experience that they can use to increase performance in the gym. As for the lifting belts, Harbinger offers a lot of models, made of nylon or leather, most with a tapered design. We chose the Padded Leather Belt, because it’s the most popular Harbinger belt, but also the one with a lot of mixed reviews. While most customers were satisfied with the purchase, there were people who questioned the quality of this belt, so we decided to analyze this product to see if it is worth buying or not.


As soon as you open the package, you will realize that the Harbinger Padded Belt has a shape similar to the Olympic belts due to its tapered design.

This is an advantage if you want to include Olympic weightlifting exercises in your workout, such as the snatch, but a belt with a uniform width provides superior support because it allows you to create better intra-abdominal pressure.

On the outside, it has a matte leather finish that offers it a clean look in combination with the logo placed in the back area.

If you like to have more colors to choose from, you will be disappointed to know that the Harbinger Padded Belt comes in only one color.

This lightweight belt is equipped with a double stainless steel buckle placed between two pieces of leather that are held together by 4 bolts. On the inside, you will not find the classic suede, but a split-leather that is not as soft.

How The Belt Was Made

In terms of width, the belt comes in two versions, one with a 6-inch back and the other with a 4-inch back. For both models, the front width remains the same, namely 3 inches. We will talk about the differences between the two models later.

Harbinger does not specify the thickness of this belt, but, as far as we can tell, it is a medium one, because it bends quite easily,  but it doesn’t look too thin.

The belt breaks in very fast compared to a 10mm model but the leather is thick enough to provide decent support. In the back area, we can find a foam cushion that makes the belt fit your body better, but it also helps in terms of comfort.

The buckle seems solid, but there is no huge difference between double-prong and single-prong models.

Who Is This Belt For?

This belt is suitable for casual lifters and more advanced athletes as it will not have problems with moderate weights. Its shape makes it excellent for people who include Olympic weightlifting exercises in their training routine. If you are looking for maximum support, the Harbinger Padded Leather Belt is not the best option due to its medium thickness and tapered design. Unfortunately, this belt cannot be used in IPF competitions, because Harbinger is not an accredited manufacturer, but also because it has a foam cushion. Keep this in mind if you want a belt that can be used in competitions. Because most leather belts are more expensive, this could be a good option for a tight budget.


Apparently, the main problem with this belt seems to be durability, as some customers have pointed out that the belt wears out too quickly.

Obviously, you cannot expect this belt to be as durable as models that cost more than $100, but if you take care of it and don’t push it to the limit, its lifespan will be considerably longer.


One of the most attractive things about this belt is the reasonable price. This makes it a great option for people who don’t want to spend too much and for those who want to buy their first belt. We consider it one of the best at this price.

Pros And Cons


  • Popular brand
  • Available in two versions
  • Well-designed
  • Foam Cushion at the back
  • Comfortable
  • Provides decent support
  • Reasonable price


  • It isn’t IPF approved
  • Not the best in terms of durability

Which Model To Choose, 4 Or 6 Inches?

As we mentioned earlier, customers can choose the back width, which can be either 4 or 6 inches. The rest of the belt is exactly the same.

One of the few differences between the two is that lifters with short trunks might find the 6-inch version uncomfortable. If you are in this situation, choose the smaller model.

Because the front width and thickness are the same for both models, the difference in support is debatable.

Final Thoughts

Overall, the Harbinger Padded Leather Belt is a versatile product suitable for both men and women, great for daily use in the gym. Unfortunately, it cannot be used in powerlifting competitions, but it is still an excellent option for a tight budget or as a first belt. Its main downside is durability, but if you want to lengthen its lifespan you should avoid pushing it to the limit.