Update the look of your leather belt with rhinestones.

How to Put Rhinestones on a Leather Belt

by Mercedes Valladares

Embellishing is a quick way to transform any accessory from drab to fab. Why not add some bling to the mix with rhinestone trim. Change the look of a traditional leather belt into a bedazzled version with this trim type -- available in a variety of colors and sizes. Since rhinestones are sold individually or as premade designs, the backing dictates the application.

Position the flat-back rhinestones on your worktable with the reverse side facing you. Flat-back rhinestones are a two-sided trim -- the faceted surface and the flat-back gray surface.

Remove the plunger or cap of the glue applicator syringe. Though applicator brand's differ, the plunger or cap is generally at the back side of the syringe and the applicator tip is at the front. Do not remove the protective applicator tip cover to prevent the adhesive from spurting out. Hold the syringe upright and pour or squeeze -- depending on the consistency of the glue -- the permanent adhesive glue into the backside of the syringe. Replace the plunger or re-cap.

Dab the center of the flat-back rhinestone with the glue. If you dab the entire surface of the flat-back, the glue will seep around the corners of the rhinestone and on the leather during application. As an alternative, directly add a small amount of glue -- equivalent to a pinhead -- directly to the leather belt.

Pick up the rhinestone with your tweezers. Set the individual rhinestone on the area of the leather belt you want to decorate. The flat-back will be against the belt.

Press down on the rhinestone with your fingertip until the rhinestone sets. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until you have positioned all of the rhinestones onto the belt. Repeat this step to set in place. Allow the rhinestones to dry for a minimum of 24 hours or according to your brand's suggestions.

Items you will need

  • Flat-back rhinestones
  • Permanent adhesive glue
  • Glue applicator syringe
  • Tweezers


  • If glue seeps outside of the rim of the rhinestone during application, quickly remove the glue with a toothpick. Certain glue brands are quick-drying adhesives, which can damage the belt surface.
  • Although you can use your fingertips to pick up the rhinestones instead of tweezers, be mindful that these adhesives have a tacky texture that can stick to your skin. Read your brand's directions for removal.
  • Project time varies according to the size and scope of your design.


  • Although hot-fix trim has a heat-activated adhesive that requires an iron for quick application, it can permanently damage the leather.

About the Author

Mercedes Valladares is the founder of M721Organics and has been an independent designer for over 15 years. Her work experience commenced during college with manufacturers based in New York and Hong Kong. Her education includes LIM College, International Fine Arts College and design certification from the Paris Fashion Institute. She produces eco-crafting videos and writes recycling articles online.

Photo Credits

  • David De Lossy/Photodisc/Getty Images