Do you need to improve the comfort of your guitar when performing or practicing?
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A good guitar strap can reduce the strain on your body, allowing you to focus more on playing your instrument to the best of your abilities.
In this article, we’ve identified the best straps for every guitarist – whether you need to increase your mobility onstage or reduce shoulder tension during long playing sessions. Our buyer’s guide also closely examines the key things to consider when purchasing a guitar strap.
Our top pick is Levy’s M4WP-006 3″ Embossed Leather Guitar Strap, which blends a comfortable, padded design with distinguished aesthetics and impressive built quality.
Finding the ideal guitar strap will minimize fatigue and ensure you’re fully comfortable when playing your instrument. Let’s find the right option for you!
Quick Summary of the Best Guitar Straps
- Levy’s M4WP-006 3″ Embossed Leather Guitar Strap (Best Overall)
- Fender Road Worn Strap (Best Vintage Strap)
- Gibson Accessories The Classic Guitar Strap (Most Comfortable Strap)
- Levy’s DM1 3″ Leather Guitar Strap (Best Budget Strap)
- MONO M80 Betty Strap (Most Lightweight Strap)
Best Guitar Straps
1. Best Overall – Levy’s M4WP-006 3″ Embossed Leather Guitar Strap
- Material: Embossed Leather with Garment Leather Backing
- Width: 3″
- Minimum Length: 37″
- Maximum Length: 52″
Levy’s expertise in guitar strap manufacturing is undeniable, and the Sundance M4WP-006 is one of the brand’s greatest creations. It features stunning stitching, which gives the strap a strong, vintage look.
Shoulder fatigue is something that can really disrupt your guitar playing, but thanks to the padded core, this leather strap minimizes it and reduces the strain on your upper body.
The thing I find most appealing about this Levy’s Sundance strap is that it manages to balance unique and striking aesthetics with excellent comfort and durability. A strap rarely provides all three of these vital qualities in abundance.
If you’re concerned about the strap digging in when you’re performing, the three-inch width ensures that your instrument’s weight is distributed efficiently. Also, the core is wrapped with luxurious tanned leather from Italy, further reducing friction on your shoulder area.
I like to use different strap lengths depending on the style of music I’m playing and when I’m using certain guitars. If this is also the case for you, the easily adjustable ladder mechanism on this guitar strap will make things much easier.
The only potential downside to the eye-catching aesthetics of this strap is that it may not suit those with a more understated, simple tase.
2. Best Vintage Strap – Fender Road Worn Strap
- Material: Distressed Leather with Distressed Suede Backing
- Width: 2″
- Minimum Length: 46.5″
- Maximum Length: 51″
The Fender Road Worn guitar strap is built to last. Made from distressed leather, it has deliberately been designed to look like it was made in the golden era of rock n’ roll. With its authentic, worn appearance, this strap genuinely looks like it was made fifty years ago.
I was particularly impressed by the flexibility of this strap, as some leather straps can be a little stiff, which may hinder mobility when performing. Thanks to the slightly reduced width of the Road Worn strap, it’s perfect for those who like to play with energy and zeal onstage.
If you’re a Fender fanatic like we are, you’ll be pleased to know that the iconic manufacturer carves its Road Worn logo into its leather straps. This adds the finishing touches to the already distinguished design
The leather used by Fender is some of the softest I’ve ever felt, and it’s a breeze to alter the length of this strap to suit your preferences. It’s an excellent option for those who play a Fender guitar like the Tele or Strat.
This strap is perfect for those who play Fender guitars, but it also looks great when paired with classic electric guitars made by other brands. However, the inclusion of a Fender logo may not suit those who like to keep their branding consistent.
3. Most Comfortable Strap – Gibson Accessories The Classic Guitar Strap
- Material: Leather with Suede Backing
- Width: 2.62″
- Minimum Length: 48″
- Maximum Length: 60″
Gibson, like Fender, is one of the most influential and highly regarded brands in the world of musical instruments. Therefore, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that this Classic Guitar Strap is incredibly well-made!
Whether you play Gibson-made guitar like the Les Paul or SG, or you’re simply looking for the most comfortable and durable strap out there, this is an excellent option.
This unique guitar strap is made from a blend of high-quality leather and suede, significantly reducing friction on your shoulder blade even if you play a heavy guitar. The suede layer prevents discomfort when playing for many hours without a break.
In typical Gibson fashion, the brand has considered even the finest of details when designing this durable strap. Its shape has been modified slightly to promote even balance so that you can fully focus on playing your guitar.
The die-cut shape improves the weight distribution of the strap, and because it can be extended up to 60”, it is suitable for those who like their guitar to hang low.
Although this strap fits securely onto most guitars, it lacks a locking mechanism that could improve stability. This could prove to be a wise addition if you like to move around a lot while playing your guitar.
4. Best Budget Strap – Levy’s DM1 3″ Leather Guitar Strap
- Material: Leather with Garment Leather Backing
- Width: 3″
- Minimum Length: 37″
- Maximum Length: 50″
If you’re looking for a relatively cheap strap that boasts a roadworthy design and a cushioned feel, then Levy’s DM1 is worth considering.
As soon as I put this strap on for the first time, I was amazed at how effortlessly it sat on the shoulder without any unnecessary force. This is a result of the foam layer on the interior, which provides a cushioned feel that reduces fatigue and discomfort during long playing sessions.
This strap can be adjusted down to 37 inches, which is great if you’re a classical guitarist who plays sitting on a chair or stool. Alternatively, you can extend it to a maximum of 54 inches, which caters to those who prefer to play their guitar lower.
The minimalist design of Levy’s DM1 means it will blend in with any style of guitar. It’s simple, affordable, and a great choice for those on a tight budget. This strap is equally suitable for acoustic, classical, electric, and bass guitar thanks to its adjustability.
In terms of its appearance, the understated black design is compatible with any style of guitar or fashion choice. It is, however, worth noting that the maximum length of 54 inches may not be long enough for guitarists who like to play their instrument very low.
5. Most Lightweight Strap – MONO M80 Betty Strap
- Material: Woven Textile with Neoprene Backing
- Width: 3″
- Minimum Length: 47″
If you’re the type of musician that likes to move around onstage, you need a strap that isn’t going to weigh you down. The GS1 by MONO is made from synthetic materials, which keep it as light as possible without compromising comfort.
With a thin layer of memory foam padding, this strap hugs your shoulder without the outer edges causing any friction. I’ve found it a great choice when recording tricky guitar parts that take a long time to perfect.
The best guitar straps must be easily adjustable, as you never know when you’ll need to tweak the length. MONO has taken this into account and installed a simple mechanism for this purpose. This strap also locks onto your guitar securely.
This strap has a small pocket that can be used to store any small accessories that you need while playing, such as guitar picks or a slide.
The synthetic material is incredibly durable and won’t be easily damaged, but the overall aesthetics of this strap are a little plain and may not suit more eccentric styles.
Best Guitar Strap Buyer’s Guide
Although they may not be quite as exciting as guitars, amplifiers, and effects pedals, the best guitar straps can make a huge difference to your playing.
It’s important to feel comfortable when you’re playing guitar so that you put more energy into your performances. Likewise, when you’re recording, a comfortable strap can be the difference between a good take and an outstanding take.
Whether you’d prefer a leather strap that will last for decades or an affordable nylon strap that is easy to adjust, there is no shortage of options available.
In our buyer’s guide, you’ll find a breakdown of the essential aspects of guitar straps so that you can make the right decision. We’ll cover the key things to take into consideration, along with details on materials, design, and style.
Things to Look for When Buying a Guitar Strap
1. Material: The material that a strap is made from significantly impacts its comfort, durability, and weight. Straps made from genuine leather are highly robust, very comfortable, and likely to last for a long time, but this often comes with extra cost. More affordable straps, made from synthetic material or nylon, are also readily available.
2. Width: Wider Guitar straps are more effective at evenly distributing the instrument’s weight across your shoulder area. This minimizes fatigue and friction, making the strap comfortable to wear for longer periods. Thicker straps can also boost comfort, but they are likely to weigh more.
3. Length Settings: Guitarists all have a personal preference when it comes to strap length, and thankfully most of them are easy to adjust. However, it’s important to check the minimum and maximum lengths the strap can be set at, particularly if you like to set it very long or short.
4. Aesthetics: While this may seem less important to some guitarists, others are very particular about their image when performing. Choosing a strap that suits the aesthetics of your band or musical project improves your appearance onstage. There are many designs available, from vintage-worn leather to intricate, colorful patterns, so bear this in mind when making your decision.
What Makes a Strap Comfortable?
Most guitarists have experienced discomfort when playing their instrument for long periods. This is particularly problematic if you use heavier guitars and play standing up, as the strap can dig into the shoulder area and negatively affect your playing.
The comfort of a guitar strap is determined by two factors – its design and its suitability for the guitarist’s needs. Someone with very broad shoulders may find wider straps feel better, while those with smaller shoulders may prefer a thicker strap that reduces tension.
Cheaper straps may save you a few bucks, but they’re unlikely to provide the same level of comfort as guitar straps made from high-quality materials – and this is reflected in the cost.
Strap manufacturers often add a layer of cushioned padding to the underside to improve comfort. A thinner strap may reduce overall weight, but it’s more likely to dig into the shoulder area.
Some guitarists prefer to hang their instruments down lower, which is popular in the grunge and metal scene. Others prefer to go with a George Harrison-style guitar position held up towards their chest.
Thankfully, having a strap with adjustable length makes it easy to find the perfect setting for your playing style.
Some guitar straps use a buckle system, which is adjusted similarly to a belt. Other designs use a sliding clip, which is more popular on nylon straps or suede straps.
Some high-end guitar straps may use a complex adjustable length mechanism that allows you to fine-tune the settings more, but this isn’t necessary for most guitarists.
Metal buckles are included on a variety of guitar straps, whether they’re made from durable nylon material or other synthetic materials, such as vegan leather straps.
The best guitar straps must firmly attach to the instrument, ensuring that it doesn’t come loose while you’re playing. Most guitarists have had the unfortunate experience of their guitar strap coming loose and slipping off midway through a performance due to it not being secured properly.
Most guitar straps are attached to the existing strap buttons on electric guitars, bass guitars, or acoustic guitars. Some musicians don’t feel like this provides enough security and therefore choose to invest in strap locks to make sure their guitar is not going to come loose.
Strap locks are optional additions, but they can make a difference even to the best guitar straps, like our top recommendation, the Levy’s M4WP-006. They’re particularly useful if you use a heavy guitar that puts more strain on the guitar strap.
Durability and Build Quality
Whether you’re buying a relatively inexpensive strap like the Levy’s DM1 3″ Leather Guitar Strap, or you’re investing in one of the more costly guitar straps like the Fender Road Worn Strap, you’ll want to get many years, if not decades of use out of it.
When it came to longevity, a leather strap was considered the best option, but as synthetic materials have become more durable, they’re able to compete with leather.
More people have become conscious of the issues surrounding leather use, and this has led to manufacturers looking for ways to improve the robustness of other materials.
By using methods like reinforced stitching, straps made from nylon and other materials can compete with those made from high-quality leather.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Do different guitar types require certain types of guitar straps?
The best guitar straps can be used for all styles of guitar, but there are some which are specifically designed for certain purposes.
For example, the best acoustic guitar straps need to be able to be shortened in length enough for the guitar player to comfortably play when sitting down on a chair or a stool.
The best guitar strap for those who use heavy guitars will need to have enough width to spread the weight across their shoulder, making it easier to stand up and play for longer. A wider guitar strap like the MONO M80 is a good option for a heavy guitar.
Are strap locks really necessary?
Even the best strap has the potential to unexpectedly detach midway through a performance, so using a strap lock system is necessary for maximum security.
If you’re using durable strap locks, you’ll have total peace of mind while playing your guitar, which is why many musicians opt to use them.
With that being said, the best guitar straps shouldn’t suddenly drop, provided you’ve properly attached them to your instrument, but sometimes we forget to double-check.
Does a guitar strap affect stage presence?
Whether a guitar strap affects stage presence depends on several factors. If the strap features a design that matches your aesthetic, it’s likely to fill you with more confidence, which will be evident to a crowd watching you play.
Using a comfortable guitar strap will allow you to move around the stage with more freedom and therefore put more of your energy and focus into your performance.
The best guitar strap should combine style and comfort, which are two qualities that can undoubtedly have a positive impact on your stage presence.
After exploring the options in our detailed guide, you should be well-equipped to choose the solid-state amp that best suits your requirements.
This guide should hopefully have helped you to find the guitar strap deals that best suit your requirements.
When making your decision, it’s vital that you consider physical aspects like the adjustable length range and the strap width to find the most comfortable guitar strap for you.
Our number one recommendation is the Levy’s M4WP-006 3″ Embossed Leather Guitar Strap, which is exceptionally comfortable and suitable for a wide range of guitar types and playing styles. The Fender Road Worn Strap is another great strap option if you like vintage aesthetics.
Each guitar strap we’ve recommended has the potential to improve your guitar-playing experience significantly, so whichever you choose, enjoy the added comfort it provides!