Best guitar straps 2023: play in comfort and secure your guitar in style

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Assorted guitar straps lie on a wooden floor

(Image credit: Future)

1. Product guide
2. Buying advice
3. How we choose products

Regardless of whether you play at home sitting down or you're ready to go out and get gigging, you'll need one of the best guitar straps. Admittedly getting a new strap isn't the most exciting thing in the world, but a good strap will last you a long time, and make your playing experience much more comfortable as well as secure your pride and joy from any accidental falls.

A guitar strap lets you hang your guitar from your shoulder and even if you only play at home it can make playing a much more ergonomic experience. A good strap will be adjustable for each player and playing style, whether you want to wear it slung low like Slash or prefer a more technical position with your guitar up high like Tom Morello. They’re available in a huge array of styles and materials too, so you’re bound to find one that matches your style.

With so many options it can be difficult to choose, so if you’re new to guitar straps make sure you have a look at our in-depth buying advice which answers many common questions. If you just want to see the best guitar straps available today, then keep on scrolling.

Chris Corfield author image
Chris Corfield

Chris Corfield is a music journalist with over 12 years of experience writing for some of the music world's biggest brands including Guitar World, MusicRadar, Total Guitar, Orange Amplification and Dawsons Music. Chris loves getting nerdy about everything from guitars and amps, to accessories like the straps featured in this guide.

Best guitar straps: Product guide

Best guitar straps: Buying advice

Cream Gibson Les Paul SG with a brown leather guitar strap

(Image credit: Future)

How to choose the best guitar strap for you 

You can trust Guitar World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing guitar products so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

The ideal guitar strap is likely to be slightly different for each player. The height of the player, and personal preference on how low they like their guitar to be will play a part in finding the right one. Guitars slung super low might look cool, but it does make playing tricky parts that bit more difficult and, over years, can cause damage to your hand and wrist. That’s not to say really long guitar straps aren’t the way to go, but it’s something to consider. 

Shorter guitarists or those that like their guitars to sit higher won’t need quite as long a strap. Most of the best guitar straps will have some level of adjustment to them, so the best thing to do is play around with different settings and find what is comfortable for you. 

If you’ve got a heavy guitar, then it might be worth finding a strap that is either fairly wide, or has a good amount of padding. Wider straps help spread the weight of the instrument over a larger surface area, so they don’t dig in as much, and straps with padding will likely make for a more comfortable experience.

Is there a difference in guitar straps?

Guitar straps are different for every player. Depending on how you prefer to have your guitar can make a huge difference in the strap you choose. Your height and body shape play a part too, as taller and larger players will need a longer strap whereas those of more diminutive proportions can get away with something shorter.

Another thing to take into account is the weight of your guitar. A Squier Strat for example is pretty lightweight so you can rock a thinner strap, but if you have a Gibson Les Paul you’re going to want to get a wider strap that spreads the weight out more to prevent you from getting shoulder or back issues.

What is the best material for guitar straps?

The material that the strap is made from is something to consider too. Straps at the more budget end are likely to be made from polyester or nylon, and will probably have plastic buckles. This isn’t always a bad thing, but they’re probably not going to last forever, and they can be slippy. If you’re after a guitar strap for live use, and you know you’re going to be wearing something like a leather jacket on stage (the unofficial rockstar uniform), then some of these cheaper straps might not provide the friction you need. 

As you go up in price, you’ll start to see materials such as leather and neoprene which are likely going to last for longer, as will metal buckles - another feature on many of the best guitar straps further up in the price bracket. You might also see more padding the more you pay.

Ernie Ball Kashmir collection

(Image credit: Ernie Ball)

How much should you spend on a guitar strap?

We’d argue that a good-quality strap will last you years and years, so spending as much as you can on one is a sound investment. If you’re a gigging player then it goes without saying that a good quality strap is worth its weight in gold and if you’re playing at home then you can probably get away with something less extravagant until you’re ready to take a step up. 

Of course, you can only buy what you have budget for so there’s nothing wrong with getting something cheaper like the Ernie Ball PolyPro range if that’s what you have. If you can spend more though on a leather strap or something wider then you will find you have a more comfortable experience playing your guitar. 

How do I attach my strap to my guitar?

Guitar straps are easy to attach to your guitar - simply fit the ends over the strap pins on your guitar (some acoustic guitars may only have one strap pin, so you’ll need a piece of thick string or thin rope for the neck end). Straps with leather ends may take a bit of working with your fingers to get on to your guitar, but it will fit eventually - plus, it’ll likely be more secure when it’s on.

Many players use strap locks too. There are different types available, but they are usually placed over the strap and locked in place so that your strap doesn’t accidentally come loose - a must-have if you’re fairly active on stage!

Find out more about how we make our recommendations and how we test each of the products in our buyer's guides.

A guitar strap lying on an electric guitar

(Image credit: Future)

Are guitar straps adjustable?

In a word, yes. Guitarists come in all shapes and sizes and every player has their own preference in terms of the height they set their guitar. Almost all guitar straps, whether they're made of leather, polyester, suede or any other material, can be adjusted to some degree. But before you get to that, when purchasing your next strap it's important to buy one that is going to be long enough for your height and your preferred hanging length for your guitar.

Once you've decided on the right strap, adjusting the length is actually super easy. Mostly commonly a strap will come with a plastic or metal buckle that allowed you to shorten or lengthen the strap with ease, pulling through as much additional material as you need for your required length. Once you're done, your strap length should remain firmly in place at the length you set. 

Leather and suede straps will require a different approach. They come in two parts: one part will feature notches - kind of like a belt you'd wear to hold up your pants - with a second part that loops through the desired notch for the height you require. It's sightly more fiddly than non-leather straps, but it's still a simple process.

And a quick tip: when adjusting the length of your strap, we would always recommend making adjustments sitting down to avoid any potential accidents if your guitar and strap decide to part company.

Does guitar strap quality matter?

It’s definitely important that the quality of your chosen strap is good. Think of it this way, your strap not only needs to be comfortable but it also needs to securely hold your guitar. You wouldn’t want to entrust your guitar to a low-quality strap, as one day it might decide to drop your guitar when you’re least expecting it.

How we choose the best guitar straps for this guide

Here at Guitar World, we are experts in our field, with many years of playing and product testing between us. We live and breathe everything guitar related, and we draw on this knowledge and experience of using products in live, recording and rehearsal scenarios when selecting the products for our guides.

When choosing what we believe to be the best guitar straps available right now, we combine our hands-on experience, user reviews and testimonies and engage in lengthy discussions with our editorial colleagues to reach a consensus about the top products in any given category.

First and foremost, we are guitarists, and we want other players to find the right product for them. So we take into careful consideration everything from budget to feature set, ease of use and durability to come up with a list of what we can safely say are the best guitar straps on the market right now.

Read more about our rating system, how we choose the gear we feature, and exactly how we test each product.

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