Only a well-dressed man can tell you how important it is to own at least one good leather jacket in your winter wardrobe. It’s a layer that can literally hide your flaws. Suppose someone is embarrassed about his paunch. A leather jacket can stylishly cover it, lifting his self-confidence and self-esteem. Whether you’re wearing a crisp white shirt with a knit tie or a plain grey turtle-neck sweater, you can carry it over anything, and it will make the getup look only classier.
However, with myriad sellers in the leatherwear market today, it’s tough to make the right choice. From the leather type to the fit and finish, you need to consider everything to pick a jacket you are not going to bury deep under a pile of clothes. You want to wear it to every occasion because you just can’t get enough of it.
This article will help you choose a leather jacket you will love wearing forever.
Things to Keep in Mind When Buying a Leather Jacket
Buying a leather jacket that highlights your strengths and hides your weaknesses is like nailing Jell-O to a tree. However, with a tad bit of knowledge about leather, various common leather jacket types and finishes, and the major sellers can do magic for you. Knowledge is power, you know?!
The quality of the leather a jacket uses is determined by its type, cut, grade, and the animal skin it uses. Many men ignore all this because it’s a lot of information to read through and also because all they normally care about is the look and fit of a jacket. If you want a leather jacket that lasts for years, you can’t make this mistake.
You can find a plethora of information on Google on the different leather types and finishes commonly used by leather jackets. The highest-quality leather is full-grain. It uses the grainy layer of animal skin immediately below the hair and is not buffed or sanded to retain the natural look. Jackets made of this type of leather are the most expensive ones and last the longest.
Top-grain leather is the second-best type of leather. It’s called top-grain because the top of the animal skin is shaved and sanded for a finished look. Most leatherwear products use this type of leather today. Then, there are also corrected, split, and bonded leather types, and quality deteriorates respectively.
As far as the leather finish is concerned, aniline and semi-aniline are the most commonly applied ones. They give the leather a finished look while retaining its original appearance. Aniline does that better and is more expensive. Other finishes include antique, brushed, waxed, and suede.
To judge the quality better, you should also gain some knowledge about the various leather cuts, grades, and hides manufacturers use.
Stitching and Tailoring
Before you proceed to the check-out counter, look at the jacket for any stitching defects, such as snags. A leather jacket is not a cheap thing, so you want to consider everything when buying one. Jackets topstitched with thick thread are usually better than those that are not.
Fit and Form
No matter how good a piece of clothing looks, if it doesn’t fit you well and make you look charming, it’s good for nothing. Always go for clothes that give you comfort and flatter your body shape. For this reason, the lining of your jacket is of great importance; it creates its fit and fall.
Other details such as zippers and pockets are also quite important. High-quality jackets use stainless, heavy metallic zippers. A mere touch can reveal their quality.
Different Types of Leather Jackets
There are five different types of jackets in fashion today; namely biker, racer, bomber, field, and aviator.
Biker Leather Jacket
The biker (aka moto) leather jacket is the oldest and classiest type of leather jacket. The inventor, Schott NYC, designed it for Harley-Davidson, who’s a world-leading bike manufacturer. Since this type of jacket was originally for bikers, it’s called the biker leather jacket. However, this style has become a fashion symbol. From Steve McQueen to Brad Pit, they all have sported this timeless style.
Racer Leather Jacket
A racer leather jacket is a simplified version of a biker jacket. It replaces the broad lapel collar with a standup collar and has fewer zippers and other embellishments than a typical biker jacket. Those who prefer simpler clothes prefer a racer leather jacket.
Bomber Leather Jacket
With a ribbed collar and cuffs, a bomber leather jacket will give you a snug hug, thanks to its firm and comfortable fit. It’s the trendiest jacket type that is preferred by cool dudes. What earns this type all the love it gets is its versatility. You can wear it with denim, cargo, or even formal silk pants.
Field Leather Jacket
A field jacket, which is also known as a barn coat, features a broad shirt-style collar. This type is currently gaining significant popularity in the fashion industry. Its functionality is its best feature. With multiple pockets, it’s the most stylish utilitarian coat you can wear on a trip.
Aviator Leather Jacket
With a fleece lining, aviator leather jackets are the thickest coats that were originally designed for people working at high altitudes to keep them warm in the zero or subzero temperatures prevailing there. However, just like other types of jackets, they have extended beyond their original use and entered the fashion industry. The sex appeal they carry can’t be matched by any other type of leather jacket.
Major Leather Jacket Brands
Belfast, All Saints, NYC, Prada, Gucci, and almost all other big names manufacture leather jackets. However, because most of them appear to have their focus shifted from quality to quantity, they have lost the client loyalty they once cherished. Then, their exorbitant prices are another reason behind consumers turning to new sellers.