One of the nice things about the leather ones is that they're easy to touch up with a little shoe polish and a rag. If the color is really rubbed off, then a little leather dye first, followed by the shoe polish.
If it's cracking, use some neatsfoot oil to treat the leather. You can then dye/polish it later, after the leather is restored.
The "Liger" belts were (are?) an all-synthetic option that won't show the wear as much, and they look a lot like leather. They're plenty stiff to support the weight.