Leather belts are a great investment and they keep for several years when well-taken care of. However, they can be pretty stiff and uncomfortable when new. Good news is that there are ways to make it softer so you can use it more comfortably.
One is with isopropyl alcohol and Vaseline. Soak a rag or cotton ball with alcohol and wipe the belt down with it well. You may need to do several applications to make sure the leather fully absorbs the alcohol. The alcohol will clean the leather and open up its pores. When it does, it is ready for the next step.
Put a thin layer of Vaseline on the belt, or any petroleum jelly product. It does not have to be thick. A small amount will do as long as the belt is covered with it. Let the material absorb the petroleum jelly. When it has absorbed the petroleum jelly, you can wipe it down to dry. You can use a clean rag or tissue. Just make sure you do not scratch the surface. If you want it to try quicker, leave it under the sun after wiping it.
Another method is using natural oils. In choosing your oil, choose one that is used as a skin-softener, like coconut oil, jojoba oil, olive oil, avocado oil, or almond oil. Keep away from chemically hydrogenated oils like corn oil or palm oil. Leather is dried treated cow skin so you need something that will soften the skin.
To use, first, let the leather belt open up its pores by leaving it our under the sun for about ten minutes. Then, apply the oil on the belt. You can apply as many layers as you want to make it softer. Putting too much won’t harm the leather. Take note that natural oils may darken the color of the leather. Make sure you apply the oil evenly. Otherwise, you will have splotches of color. If you think the belt is still not soft enough, just repeat the process.