A good belt is the linchpin of a solid carrying system. No matter how good your holster, no matter how good your gun, if you have a weak (and usually cheap) belt, you’ll always fight to carry effectively. In the past, I’ve used a CompTac belt with great success. It’s a solid belt with a reinforced Kydex strip that makes it very stiff, the key to a good belt. Recently, I’ve had the opportunity to spend a few months wearing the Aegis Enhanced belt from Ares Gear, and I’m totally sold . . .
The Aegis Enhanced is a brutally simple belt. It is a thick and very stiff strip of scuba webbing, held in place by a robust buckle that takes a tighter, stronger bite the tighter you pull. It came from the factory with two elastic bands to help retain excess belt material, but they broke off almost immediately. Otherwise, it has been robust, and spectacular at helping me carry around a fully loaded XD(m) 4.5.
My wife tells me that its not a particularly fashionable thing to wear, regularly referring to it as my “seat belt.” I explained that Chris Costa personally endorses the Aegis. He calls it his favorite belt. She remains unswayed, though she does agree that Costa has a solid beard. What Mr. Costa and I can agree on is that this is a simple, robust, and generally fine way to carry a gun. When your T Levels are through the roof, fashion matters not one bit. Or so I hear.
Sizing ran true to form for me. I normally wear a size 34 pants, which correlates to a medium on the sizing page for Ares. Sure enough, a medium is just about perfect to include pants, an IWB holster, and the rest of my body. Carrying is where the Ares belt truly shines. It is so stiff that it forms an almost steel like band around your waist. OWB holsters simply cannot flex the belt outwards, and IWB holsters seem to be more comfortable with it in place. I used this belt daily for keeping my pants up, carrying a gun, flashlight, and extra magazine. I was unable to break it, or even harm it a little bit. Short of hooking it up to a winch and an anchored bolt, I don’t know how to break it.
Sometime in late 2016, the inner and outer layers of nylon started to separate creating a “bump” right where the tension bar in the buckle rides. The end result was that the belt was either a touch too tight or a touch too loose. I contacted Ares Gear who let me know that since I was not the original purchaser (belt was a gift), their warranty did not apply. Keep this policy in mind if you are going to gift the belt to someone as you’ll need to keep your receipt
Specifications: Ares Gear Aegis Enhanced Belt
- Belt Color: Lots
- Buckle Color: Stainless, Black, Bronze
- Engraving: Four styles available (+$10)
- Size: XS (30″ Waist) – 4XL (44″ Waist)
- Price: $120.99
Rating (out of five stars):
Overall Rating * * * *
I fully realize that $100+ is a lot to pay for a belt. I also realize that a nice belt can be the difference between a carrying experience that enhances your life and one that fights you the whole time. The Aegis belt is one of the nicest belts I’ve worn day in and day out for months. Other than the elastic band popping off within hours of it coming out of the bag, I have nothing but praise for it as a compliment to my EDC gear.