The Dark Iron Fitness Leather Weight Lifting belt isn’t your run-of-the-mill leather belt. It’s even better — it’s the most popular best-selling lifting belts online.
That’s a pretty big deal for a company still making headway in the weightlifting community.
So what is it about this belt that’s getting thousands of lifters to hand over their money like it’s going to rot in their wallet? Let’s find out!
Table of Contents
- About the Manufacturer – Dark Iron Fitness
- What is the Dark Iron Fitness Leather Weight Lifting Belt?
- Belt Details & Features
- 3 Undeniable Benefits of this Weight Lifting Belt
- 2 Negatives of this Belt
- Wrapping Up This Dark Iron Fitness Leather Weight Lifting Belt Review
About the Manufacturer – Dark Iron Fitness
Dark Iron Fitness first took off in 2015 when a few buddies got together and realized they had a similar problem: The weightlifting belts on the market were — to put it gently — garbage.
The weightlifting belt we’re about to review was their first product as a company.
Since then, the company has pushed out a product line that weightlifting enthusiasts can’t get enough of, including straps, wraps, apparel, and more!
The brand’s reputation seems to overpower even the most long-standing brands in fitness.
So how does a new company make such waves in half a decade?
Well, Dark Iron Fitness has one rule when designing new gear: Put the customer first.
In terms of where the brand is going, it’s now on track to begin sponsoring athletes.
Current sponsors include Gretta Vitta-Everett and Tyler Everett, who boast nearly 200,000 Instagram followers combined. Not sure who they are, but it’s exposure, right?
What is the Dark Iron Fitness Leather Weight Lifting Belt?
The Dark Iron Fitness Leather Weight Lifting Belt can handle just about anything, whether you’re going light on leg day or cranking out your heaviest deadlift ever.
Here’s what the manufacturer claims to be the promises of the belt.
- Performs better than any nylon, leather, plastic, or velcro belt on the market
- Won’t break, stretch, or rip when you’re mid-rep
- Sits comfortably around the waist, so no bruising and no excess bulk
- Fits perfectly around the waist of any lifter
- Users can lift 10% more on day one
- Supports 600+ pound deadlifts and squats without damaging the belt
We must admit: A lot of these claims seem to be too good to be true. We’ll find out if this belt is the real deal or a complete bust later on!
You can also check for yourself. Here are reviews from real Amazon customers.
Belt Details & Features
This Dark Iron Fitness Leather Weight Lifting Belt was the first belt ever made by this company, and it shows no sign of going away anytime soon.
So, we might as well give it the spotlight it deserves by explaining why this belt is so popular.
Here’s what you need to know.
The Construction of the Belt
First things first: This belt is made entirely of genuine buffalo hide leather.
Fortunately, this isn’t one of those phony leather belts with a leather exterior and what looks like cardboard on the inside.
Buffalo hide is known for being up to three times as strong as regular cowhide and makes a massive difference in your workout performance.
The unheard-of flexibility of buffalo hide means you won’t have to spend weeks breaking this belt in or leaving it rolled up to enhance flexibility as you go to the gym sans-belt.
Just pack it in your gym bag and get ready to load up the barbell.
The soft nature of buffalo hide will also keep the edges from digging into the sensitive areas of your ribs and hips. You’ll never have to worry about bruised ribs or painful squats ever again.
In essence: This 4” belt is designed to be comfortable.
To be sure that the belt is as durable as possible from all vantage points, Dark Iron Fitness included heavy-duty stitching across the belt. The red stitch pattern adds a little style to the typical black belt and enhances the strength to prevent tearing or stretching.
At just 4mm thick — yes, it’s thin for leather, but remember, it is buffalo hide — this belt will never get in the way of sinking low into a deep squat. This belt is half as thick as the average weightlifting belt, yet you probably wouldn’t notice.
What the Belt Can Do
This belt is the real deal despite its unusual thinness.
Surprisingly, Dark Iron Fitness has evidence that this belt can support lifts of over 600 pounds without so much as the belt stretching a centimeter. In fact, it’d be hard to find an instance where this belt tore or stretched mid-rep under normal circumstances.
Closing the belt is simple and will give you some peace of mind as well.
The steel double prong buckle will absolutely remain latched shut whether you’re taking it easy on leg day or making an attempt at your heaviest squat yet.
More importantly, you may just be able to pump out 10% more on your PR on the squat or deadlift as soon as day one. There’s nothing like seeing what you’re made of right off the bat and seeing that your time in the gym until now was worth it.
Like every other belt out there, Dark Iron Fitness does have its own size chart that you’ll want to reference before sending a belt over to your “cart.”
Be sure to measure around your waist at the belly button, and don’t assume that your pants size is the right number to go on.
This is what their size chart looks like:
- XS: 22” to 31”
- S: 27” to 35”
- M: 32” to 40”
- L: 36” to 44”
- XL: 41” to 49”
We also want to point out that this belt is both IPF and USAPL approved. This leather belt is the right choice if you plan to enter competitions and prove you’re out of the “noob” phase.
The Dark Iron Fitness Promise
It’s safe to say that the manufacturer is confident in its ability to please customers. If your belt ever fails or if you feel it hasn’t improved your performance in the gym, then Dark Iron Fitness will offer a refund at no cost to you.
How’s that sound?
3 Undeniable Benefits of this Weight Lifting Belt
1. It Does It All
Most guys at the gym are wearing a belt for one reason: Good form. You depend on a belt to keep your core and back muscles supported as you hit the squat rack or crank out deadlifts.
But what if we told you that your weightlifting belt could take your workouts to the next level?
This Dark Iron Fitness belt is truly a force to be reckoned with in that sense.
The fact that this belt can withstand lifts of over 600 pounds makes it a belt you can rely on for any powerlifting or weightlifting workout you had in mind. But it’s also flexible and thin enough (at 4mm thick) to stay out of your way when you decide to visit the Box for an impromptu WOD.
You no longer have to load up your gym bag with several belts — this is one of the best belts on the market.
2. An Awesome Warranty & Customer Service
The fitness industry can be a little finicky. You have manufacturers that are confident in their products, yet find disappointed customers to be nothing but a nuisance.
Dark Iron Fitness goes above and beyond to keep customers satisfied.
Anytime you find yourself in a pickle with this belt, the customer service department will put your needs above all else.
The belt fails? Free replacement.
The belt is the wrong size? Free replacement (with the right size, of course).
The belt isn’t what you thought it’d be? Refund!
This policy is obviously easy on the wallet, but it also goes to show you that Dark Iron Fitness is legitimately confident in the products it sells. A company willing to back-up its claims with policies like this shows that customers come first and their products are legit.
It’d be hard to find a company willing to do the same, at least to this extent.
3. The Middle Ground Between Sturdy Leather & Soft Nylon
As you traverse the online forums and check out what lifters have to say, you’ll catch on to one interesting debate: Leather belts vs. nylon belts.
Many guys are dead set on the idea that leather belts are the way to go. Genuine leather belts are sturdy enough to support you through 500+ pound deadlifts without a second thought.
Then, there are nylon supporters. A good nylon belt is far more comfortable during long workouts and doesn’t leave you bruised up or doubling over in pain.
This belt, well, it’s the middle ground.
Thanks to the buffalo hide leather, this Dark Iron Fitness belt is flexible, thin, durable, comfortable, reliable, and every other positive thing you can think of for nylon and leather belts.
You don’t have to go hardcore in either direction with this option.
It’s the best of both worlds.
2 Negatives of this Belt
1. It’s Unusually Thin
Most leather weightlifting belts measure in between 10mm and 13mm thick. Now, this thickness is important for a few obvious reasons.
Thicker leather belts are much more highly-regarded when it comes to the amount of support the belt will provide. They may be uncomfortable, but they’re extremely reliable and never leave you guessing, “Can my belt handle this?”
The fact that this Dark Iron Fitness belt is just 4mm thick, well, that can be a bit concerning.
Quite a few people online have noted that this belt, in particular, seems a little flimsy. It can still support 600+ pounds in most cases, but the belt’s stiffness isn’t always up to par.
You might be wary about testing for a new PR since this belt might give a little as you’re launching up during your deadlift.
You should be fine, but trust your gut.
2. It Could Ruin Your Shirts
This one isn’t as much about the belt’s performance as it’s about convenience.
It seems that the black dye on the leather will start to wear away after a few uses. The more you sweat during your workout, the more color will get on your shirt and likely leave stains.
Good luck getting black stains out of a white shirt.
Fortunately, leaky dye is a problem that you can work around without much effort. Just wear a black shirt or a shirt you don’t mind getting dirty at the gym and it’s like it never stained at all!
Or, just stop sweating.
The good news is that there’s only so much dye in the belt to begin with. So don’t be surprised if the staining slows down or comes to a complete stop after a few weeks of using this belt.
If this is the worst of your problems with the belt, then that’s a pretty good sign!
Wrapping Up This Dark Iron Fitness Leather Weight Lifting Belt Review
This isn’t the first time we’ve written about the Dark Iron Fitness Leather Weight Lifting Belt, and it probably won’t be the last time. It’s been among our favorite belts for nearly every category, from bodybuilding and Olympic weightlifting to belts designed for women and squats.
This belt is as dependable as they come.
Nearly every lifter who orders this belt is pleased by the product that arrives on their doorstep. This Dark Iron Fitness Belt can help you top your PRs on every compound lift from the get-go.
This belt won’t stretch, tear, or break, even if you’re pushing it to its limits by knocking out squats or deadlifts beyond 600 pounds. The unrivaled abilities of this belt make it an excellent choice if you’ve never stepped foot into a gym, or if you’re an elite powerlifter.
This belt is a beast and deserves a spot in every gym bag.
Rating: 9.7 out of 10