Guitar straps are easily one of the most overlooked guitar gear pieces in a guitarist’s gear set. Most guitarists take a look around on Facebook or their favorite music blog to fantasize about a newly released instrument or amp, but no one really gives guitar straps the attention that they deserve.
While a guitar strap isn’t the most exciting piece of gear in your setup, having the right guitar strap in your gear can really help to make sure that you’re going down the right path in your guitar journey.
The difference between a quality guitar strap and a poorly made guitar strap can honestly change the quality of your sound and change how well you’re playing.
A quality strap will evenly balance the weight of your instrument on your shoulders, be adjustable so that you can customize your strap to your height and/or body type, and you won’t feel any pain or discomfort in your neck when you do have the strap resting on your shoulders.
TL;DR: Here’s my overall assessment for those in a hurry…
- KLIQ AirCell Guitar Strap – Most Comfortable & Supportive Guitar Strap (Amazon / Reverb)
- Ernie Ball Black Polypro Strap – Best Budget Guitar Strap (Sweetwater / Amazon)
- Walker & Williams Woven Strap – Best Vintage Guitar Strap (Amazon)
- Iconic Leathers Wide Black Strap – Best Leather Guitar Strap (Amazon)
- Levy’s Leathers Jacquard Weave Strap – Most Unique Weave Options (Amazon / Sweetwater)
- LeatherGraft Wide Padded Strap – Best Wide Guitar Strap (Amazon)
How to Choose a Guitar Strap
There are three basic things that you should look for before purchasing a guitar strap: comfort, functionality, and style. A guitar strap that is worth your money will rest comfortably on your shoulders won’t have any sharp edges that dig into you, and won’t feel like it’s pulling too heavy on your neck (particularly for a heavy guitar).
You should also keep an eye out for a guitar strap that has an adjustable length on it, because there may be times when you’re playing where you would prefer to keep your guitar lower towards your waist, while there may be other times where you want it a little bit above your waist.
The size of your stomach and your height will also affect where your guitar is laying on your body, which you can adjust with an adjustable strap.
This is really just up to personal preference, but it’s better to have an adjustable strap than not to have an adjustable strap.
The position of your instrument does make a big difference in your playing quality, so make sure that you take the time to ensure that your guitar strap fits comfortably on your body.
You should also want to purchase a guitar strap that is made of high-quality materials, mainly if you have invested a lot of money into your instrument.
If you have spent several hundred (or even thousand) dollars on your instrument, don’t trust a cheap $1 strap to hold up your instrument. If the strap breaks, your instrument is hitting the floor and possibly becoming damaged.
Investing in a guitar strap that is made of high-quality material will help to ensure that the strap lasts longer, which helps to ensure the longevity of your instrument.
Most Comfortable Guitar Strap: KLIQ Air Cell Guitar Strap
The Air Cell guitar strap by KLIQ features a simple design but is popular in the guitar community because of its simplicity, durability, and comfort.
If you aren’t looking for a whole lot of bells and whistles to come with your strap, this is a strap that is a bit of an investment but is a bit more affordable compared to other straps of the same quality.
Three different sizing options come with this instrument, which means that people of all body sizes will be able to find an Air Cell strap.
With an adjustable length from 46-inches to 56-inches, is three inches wide, and is comprised of an open fabric to encourage breathability. Air Cell has synthetic leather ends to hold both bass guitars and electric guitars safely.
Air has the ideal physical properties for absorbing impact and shock, and when playing for hours, a guitar or bass doesn't get any lighter.
This is the cheapest guitar strap that we have on this list because we wanted to give beginning guitarists access to a sturdy guitar strap without having to worry about blowing your budget.
Ernie Ball is one of the most well-known guitar accessories manufacturers around today. The Black Polypro guitar strap is incredibly affordable (it’s under $10!) and has surprising durability for being so affordable.
There is real leather used on the ends of the straps, which are strong enough to hold acoustic guitars, electric guitars, and even bass guitars. This Ernie Ball strap is two-inches wide with polypropylene webbing that is adjustable 36-inches to 68-inches. Another exciting thing is that you can choose what color you would like your guitar strap to come in, so have the ability to customize your look!
Used by countless rockstars, professional musicians, and local artists alike, Ernie Ball’s polypro guitar straps have been embraced for their basic design and iconic gold Ernie Ball logo.
This guitar strap from Walker and Williams was built for the guitarists out there that are looking to play on a comfortable hootenanny style strap. The physical build for this strap is two inches wide and can be adjusted from 32-inches to 55-inches in length and is comprised of woven nylon and a non-scratching polyester adjuster.
You also won’t have to worry about your adjustment slipping, as there are thick leather ends that hold your instrument in place. This guitar strap costs $20.
This H-01 Blue Woodstock model from their Hootenany series of straps is their take on the classic woven straps used by every rock star of the 60's. These are 100% handmade straps crafted with special skill and craftsmanship.
Best Leather Guitar Strap: Iconic Leathers Guitar Strap
The look of old, worn leather is something that is very attractive to a lot of guitar players. If you are a guitar or bass guitar player and you’re looking for a quality leather guitar strap that’s worn-looking and comfortable to play with, this Iconic Leather guitar strap may be something that you want to look into.
You can extend this strap from 43-inches to 54-inches, with 3.25-inches in width and a dual-layer of padding to provide extra comfort.
The Levy’s Leather M8HT-04 Hootenanny guitar strap has a few extra features included in the strap that make it great if you’re looking for a strap that has more than one person.
Not only is this strap visually eye-catching, but it is a very soft feeling in comparison to other straps at this same price range. This two-inch wide guitar strap is completely adjustable from 37.8-inches to 54-inches, which will comfortably fit most children and adults.
As extra features, you will find that you can hold extra picks in this strap, which is extremely convenient if you find that you’re continually dropping your picks.
You can comfortably play bass guitar, electric guitar, and acoustic guitar on this flashy strap and not feel like there is the uneven weight being held on your shoulders. With the purchase of this strap, you will also receive three guitar picks, too!
Features 2 inch sixties Hootenanny jacquard weave guitar strap with polypropylene backing, leather ends and tri-glide adjustment.
This Leather Graft Leather Guitar strap is a real leather guitar strap that is made to comfortably fit all guitars (anything in need of wider straps) – bass, electric, and acoustic guitar strap friendly.
While the design of this strap is straightforward, there are a few different colors that you can choose from. This is a 2.7-inch wide strap that is adjustable from 40-inches to 49-inches, with a non-slip back that will help to ensure that the leather strap is comfortable to play and doesn’t slide around on your shoulders, which will make sure that your instrument is evenly balanced.
Famous Guitar Straps
Over the years we’ve seen some incredibly iconic guitar straps from Rock n’ Roll greats to modern pop stars. If you are looking for some iconic celebrity swag (that true insiders can appreciate), here are some famous guitar straps worth considering:
- Jim Dunlop Jimi Hendrix Strap: This commemorative guitar strap celebrates the one of a kind Jimi Hendrix (Amazon / GuitarCenter)
- EVH Premium Leather Guitar Strap: Wear a strap commemorating the late Eddie Van Halen, officially licensed (Sweetwater / Amazon)
- D’Andrea Ace Vintage Jimmy Page Strap: Add this vintage Jimmy Page replica strap to your collection (Amazon)
- George Harrison Rocky Polyester Strap: Sport the officially licensed George Harrison strap (Fender)
Best Custom Guitar Strap Vendors
Customizing your own guitar strap can be a wonderful adventure. Whether you are looking for a specific aesthetic, custom monograms, or just certain comfort & support features, there are few quality design shops able to take orders online.
- Etsy Custom Straps: There are a LOT of options on Etsy and most of the vendors are comfortable with feedback & precise instructions. Also supports small operators / crafts.
- Strap Graphics: Offers a choose your own adventure selection system. A bit rough around the edges to use online, but quality craftsmanship and excellent customer support.
- Double Treble: These guys offer a custom online “Strap Builder” to get your design right, as well as how much each customization adds to the total cost.
- BurnWizard: Specializes in hand-burned engraved genuine leather straps. One of a kind!
The Final Word on the Best Guitar Strap
While a lot of musicians are fine playing on an inexpensive guitar strap, you may find that these cheaper straps dig into your shoulders, aren’t very sturdy feeling, and/or don’t distribute the weight of your instrument evenly across your body.
At the end of the day, if you’re trying to decide whether it is worth investing in a quality guitar strip or just go with a cheap strap, the choice is ultimately up to you.
However, it is entirely worth it to invest some extra money in purchasing a guitar strap that is going to evenly distribute the weight of your instrument across your shoulders, as this will help to make playing much more comfortable and increase your playing stamina.