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Get an Essence of Traditional Belize Clothing

The Mayans were Belize's first residents, but the country has been home to a number of other civilizations since then. The designs and colors that they use on their garments are a tribute to the traditions of the area. They traditionally wear yellow, black, and white as their primary colors. Learn more here!
Belizean Creole

The traditional clothes used in Belize are representative of the dress styles that are common across Central America. 

Long, billowing skirts with floral embroidery in various colors will be available for females. It is advised that male attendees wear slacks and shirts made of soft fabric, as well as the traditional headwear of a hat and scarf.

Belize is located in the northeastern part of Central America, and its boundaries are shared with Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras. It shared many cultural characteristics with them, even going so far as to be the language most generally used in the north and in certain western areas while neglecting English, the language that serves as the official language. It did this in spite of the fact that English is the language that serves as the official language. So, it is without a doubt that many of the clothing options also stem from this. 

So, let’s put on our traditional Belizean fashion hats, get in a time machine, and travel back in time to see what exactly traditional clothing was like in Belize!

Ethnicity & Traditional Clothing of Belize

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Although Belize has been referred to as a “melting pot” of civilizations on more than one occasion, this description may not be totally true. The culture of Belize may be more accurately described as a stunning latticework, with its diverse peoples weaving around and between one another. 

The term “melting pot” is inaccurate since Belizeans proudly celebrate their many cultural backgrounds and deliberately pass on their traditions, rather than assimilating into a single, uniform population. These include the Mestizo, Mayans, Garifuna, and Creole. 

In point of fact, maintaining different identities does not require maintaining separate spaces; rather, the vibrant culture of Belize effortlessly absorbs aspects of the contributions made by each of the ethnic groups in terms of clothing, style, language, food, and more.

Traditional mayan clothing

Traditional Mayan Style in Belize

The pre-Columbian Mayans are well known for their unique, vibrant appearances as well as their utilization of peculiar body modifications. 

They took advantage of the materials that were available to them in their tropical surroundings in order to manufacture colorful textiles and decorations that caught people’s attention. They designed a wide range of garments suitable for a number of events, including extravagant garb for significant public gatherings, colorful costumes for dance, armor for combat and athletic use, as well as everyday garb that was not less stylish for its simplicity.

At big public events, when the people would come to observe the execution of rituals or other ceremonial activities, the ruling class would dress in gargantuan, luxurious garments to signify their prominent places in society. These garments would be worn at significant public occasions. Some of these outfits would consist of gargantuan feathered headdresses, jade jewelry, and clothes crafted from the skins of dangerous animals (such as jaguars). Images of this lavish clothing are often seen on carved monuments that were positioned in public areas of ancient Mayan’s villages so that the whole community may view them. 

The majority of men now wear shirts and pants in a style that is influenced by both Europe and the United States. Women’s apparel encompasses a wide range of styles, from the most up-to-date to the most traditional. A lot of women like to wear long gowns that are one solid color all the way through and have lace frills at the neck and the sleeves. 

These gowns may be manufactured out of any number of vibrantly colored materials. Other women choose to dress in skirts that reach their calves and are weaved by hand or machine. Cotton fabric, either white or colored, is often used to make blouses, which are then decorated with lace or embroidery.

Traditional Creole Clothing in Belize​

Traditional Creole Clothing in Belize

Women among the Creoles often wear long skirts with patterns and cotton tops. Blouses are often made of cotton. 

Shirts that are white but have ruffled fabric in various colors at the neck are also appropriate. Most of the time, vivid fabric is used for the skirt, the blouse, and the headgear. Men wear straw hats, richly colored traditional shirts, and white pants when they go out in public. The Creole group was numerically strong during the colonial period, but now it only makes up roughly 21% of the population.

Traditional Belizean Mestizo Clothing

The bulk of modern Mestizos chooses to dress in a manner that is considered Western. Mestizo women traditionally wear a loose-fitting white tunic known as the huipil, which is also quite popular in Mexico. 

This is considered to be their most identifying piece of apparel. It may be cut to a shorter length and worn as a shirt, or it can be made longer so that it reaches the knees. In many cases, it is embroidered with vibrant colors and ribbons.

These huipils, which are traditionally worn in Central America due to the region’s high levels of humidity and heat, are the most comfortable clothing option. Cotton or wool is used in their construction, and they may be worn either on a daily basis or for more formal occasions.

In addition, ancient Mestizo society made considerable use of jewelry and headdresses, both of which were traditional Mayan elements. In modern-day Belize, traditional Mestizo jewelry may still be purchased from local vendors. Necklaces made of gold and rings set with precious stones are two examples of typical instances.

Garifuna Belize

Traditional Garifuna Clothing in Belize

The Garifuna traditionally wear yellow, black, and white as their primary colors. 

In many cultures, it is common for women to wear colorful headpieces and long robes made of patterned cloth. The work of the many excellent painters that call the Garinagu people their home is distinguished by the use of vibrant colors, distorted perspectives, and historical themes.

Most Garifuna people dress in a manner that is contemporary with Western culture. Even among older ladies, there aren’t many who still wear traditional shell-trimmed costumes. Even among younger women, shell-trimmed dresses are rare. They do, however, wear colorful long skirts and kerchiefs, which differentiates them from younger girls, who often dress in ways that are more common in other parts of the world, such as jeans, t-shirts, and tight skirts.

The gentlemen also wear jeans, but instead of the traditional straw hats, they now wear baseball caps. The environments in which young people’s parents have chosen to make their homes affect the clothing they wear. 

Some of the younger people in the communities may be seen wearing the most recent fashions from New York City, which they have acquired with money sent to them from family members who reside in other countries. In addition, the men wear a traditional shirt with a one-of-a-kind design called a “Dashiki.” This kind of shirt often has the same pattern as the one worn by the female counterpart.

Different Attire for Men and Women in Belize​

Different Attire for Men and Women in Belize

Belizean style is one that is very unique, some people say it comes from Indian fashion, other’s say it resembles American fashion. Either way it is quite striking, fun, and colorful. The men and women of Belize both dress in western style clothing however it varies in many ways – let’s find out how so!

Women’s Dressing in Belize

Ladies’ long skirts that include floral motifs, embroidered details, and a variety of color options. In addition to the traditional hat and handkerchief, gentlemen should wear pants made of a soft fabric and button-down shirts.

In a general sense, the hues of their traditional garments are the best way to characterize them. The garments designed for women are intricately decorated with floral and geometric patterns. The so-called ruffles, which are often clothes in the form of waterfalls with lace trimming, are frequently attached to the shirt or blouse, which is an essential component of a woman’s ensemble. Ruffles are commonly attached to the shirt or blouse.

Skirts are designed with convenience in mind. Since they are fully long and wide, it is possible for women to grab hold of them by the ends and exert control over them. They also include pockets, and in some cases, beautiful birds made out of needlework have been added to the design of the pockets. If the blouse is intended to be the primary focus of the ensemble’s design, the skirt may incorporate vivid colors such as blue or red.

The use of woven bags made of wool that reflect exquisite geometric elements in a variety of colors is another characteristic that sets the feminine wardrobe apart from the masculine wardrobe.

Women’s Dressing in Belize​

Men’s Dressing in Belize

The gentleman’s getup consists of black or white fashionable pants, a white shirt, a handkerchief, and a hat. Additionally, the gentleman should have a handkerchief.

Another well-known getup consists of a white shirt and pair of trousers, a red waistband with a long bow-shaped end, and a white hat with black embellishments. These days, it is rather unusual to see people dressed in the same clothes on a consistent basis as they did in the past. It was intended to be used at special occasions, such as festivals, national observances, or workplace celebrations.

People living farther north along the border with Mexico often continue to dress in this manner since they are members of indigenous ethnic groups and have maintained their traditional dress.

Creole Accessories - Traditional Belize Attire

The phrase “Creole jewelry” is often used to refer to one particular kind of earring that has been fashionable for a significant amount of time. Creole earrings are still one of the most popular styles in fashion jewelry today, as shown by the fact that millions of women all around the globe wear them.

This specific kind of earring, which has elaborate design elements, may be worn by women of any age. It is stated that Creole earrings were first manufactured in Belize, which is located in New Orleans, Louisiana, before being distributed and sold in other parts of the world.

Just a limited number of Belizians were responsible for the development of the style, the term “Creole” was first assigned to describe it. The Creole earrings were designed with their background in mind as the primary source of inspiration. Even now, Belize is associated with the design of jewelry, which is now considered to be one of the first architectural trends ever. This bears an uncanny similarity to jewelry known as the “evil eye,” which is treasured in a variety of cultures.


The Mayans were Belize’s first residents, but the country has been home to a number of other civilizations since then. 

The designs and colors that they use on their garments are a tribute to the traditions of the area. A tzute is a rectangular piece of cloth that is slung over the shoulder and may be used as a cloak, as well as a cap for protection from the sun. Men don’t typically wear jewelry, but women do. Morals are a kind of bag that is often carried by males. 

The fashion and style in Belize are very catchy, and some may even call it trendy nowadays! Hope this article helped you understand where traditional Belize fashion stems from.

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