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The Only Men’s Leather Jacket Guide You Need

November 13, 2018 2 Comments

The Only Men’s Leather Jacket Guide You Need

The leather jacket is a classic piece of Americana style and has enjoyed a resurgence of popularity among young men. If you’ve recently considered purchasing one for yourself, but aren’t sure if it fits your style or you don’t know where to begin in your search, I’ll offer some suggestions for buying your first or upgrading one already in your collection. You’ll want to consider questions like: Does this fit my personality? Does it work with items I already have in my wardrobe? What does quality look like in a leather jacket? How should it fit? If you can find strong answers for these questions, you’ll be the proud new owner of a terrific piece of menswear. Leather coats for men is an important statement piece, so make sure to educate yourself properly before buying your first jacket.

Buying that first genuine leather jacket for men is a milestone moment in life. A mens black leather jacket is one of the biggest statement pieces you can wear. If new arrivals at your favorite store make it very hard to choose, don't worry. Before you pull the trigger on buying one, it's natural to have some questions. When you're buying something this important and potentially expensive, you want to be sure that you're making the right decision.

What You Will Need to Buy Your First Men's Leather Jacket

The good news is that you won't need much to buy your first leather jacket. Here's a rundown of everything you'll need to follow this tutorial:

  • Your current upper body measurements, including your chest, waist and arm length
  • An idea of what clothes you plan to wear with your leather jacket
  • Enough money to buy a leather jacket ($300 is a good minimum)

For your measurements, I'd recommend going to have a professional measure you. A tailor can do this if you plan to purchase anything from them, and many clothing stores also have staff available to measure customers. You could also have a friend or family member do it, although they may not be as handy with a tape measure. Just don't do it yourself, as you probably won't get accurate measurements.

Knowing what you're going to wear with your jacket will help during the purchasing process. And obviously, you can't buy a leather jacket without money. With that covered, let's get started on buying your leather jacket.

Choose the leather jacket

1. Set Your Budget

It's much easier to narrow down your leather jacket options when you know how much you can spend. This is especially true online, where many sites allow you to filter or sort results by price.

Keep in mind that good leather jackets aren't cheap, and it's a bad idea to buy fake leather because of the lower cost. There's a huge quality difference between real and fake leather.

I said that $300 is a good minimum, and while you can score a quality leather jacket for less than that, it's nice to have some breathing room. If you can afford more, you'll have far more options to choose from.

2. Choose a Style You Like

There are many different leather jacket styles, and your personal style determines what type of leather jacket will be right for you. Do you want a jacket that can look somewhat professional? Or do you want to look like a rock star? Do you want a moto jacket? Here's a look at the most popular styles and what they're best suited for.

Biker

The biker design is, as the name implies, intended for bikers. It is cut close to the body with a thin, tight design so that it feels comfortable if you are leaning over a motorcycle. You should expect a set of zips, flaps, and buttons to protect the pockets located on the front and sides. Leather biker jackets are usually black.

Popular types of leather jackets

Bomber

The bomber style originates with the pilots of World Wars I and II. They are protective like the biker jacket, but also designed to help keep you warm. At the same time, they are thin enough to allow relatively free movement. A bomber is simple in style and often has no pockets or buttons. They have elastic collars and cuffs to keep cold air out. Their basic design makes them suitable for use with many different looks and accompanying clothes.

Bombers come in brown and black. It’s a classic leather jacket that looks good on just about everyone. Also known as aviator jackets, the modern bomber is an ode to the original style designed to suit military aviators during World War II. It exudes masculinity and looks good with the majority of your wardrobe, fluctuating flexibly between casual and formal.

Bomber jackets can be pretty warm, so it probably doesn’t need a lot beneath it. They come in a variety of different colors, mostly black and varying shades of brown. We personally prefer the worn-looking brown shades—it feels more reminiscent of the jacket’s military history, like you really just stepped off the frontlines.

Field Jacket

The field jacket is built for hiking and outdoor activity in potentially cold weather. It is longer and thicker than the previous designs and usually has several buttoned pockets. A field jacket can have a medium to tall collar for wind protection. While the biker and bomber jacket are generally fashion articles, the field jacket is more practical and specialized. The length and weight makes it comfortable outside. This kind of jacket is most commonly brown.

Racer

The racer jacket was a direct descendant of the bomber. WWII pilots adapted it for postwar motorcycle racing. Compared to the bomber, it has a more defined shoulder and drops the elastic on the collar and cuff. The racer has a simple, strong profile that you can pair with basic outfits, such as a plain white tee and jeans. Racers come in black as well as shades of brown.

Flight Jacket

The flight jacket is an iconic design. It also has its roots in piloting, but it has a much more distinctive look thanks to the use of sheepskin. The sheepskin can be located at the collar, at the collar and cuffs, or throughout the interior as a lining. The sheepskin will be visible in any configuration. Some models have elastic cuffs if there is no sheepskin there. They typically have at least two pockets and may come with straps near the neck. Flight jackets are extremely warm, especially if they have a complete lining. Be careful about wearing too many layers underneath them, because you can easily start sweating. This is the best design for cold weather and they can look incredible thanks to the contrast in color between the sheepskin and the leather. Most of them are brown but a few models come in black.

The Best of the Rest

Other leather jacket styles include the varsity jacket, the trench coat, the pea coat and the fencing jacket. While these can all be good styles, they don't have the iconic appeal of the three styles above. For that reason, I'd recommend making one of the classics your first leather jacket so that you have a quality foundational piece for your wardrobe.

Pro Tip: Get a Versatile, Classic Style First

It's tempting to get a unique leather jacket that makes you stand out. If this is your first leather jacket, you're better off choosing one of the classic styles – the Double Rider, the Moto Racer or the Bomber.

Those styles are popular for a reason. While they may not be as unique, a high-quality leather jacket doesn't need gimmicks to get people's attention. A black Double Rider still turns heads.

There are two big problems with getting a unique leather jacket. The first is that you can't wear it as often. You can get plenty of use out of the classic styles, but a more unique style loses its appeal when you wear it all the time. People start wondering if that's the only jacket you own.

The second is that those more unique styles can make you look like you're trying too hard. Maybe you can pull off a leather trench coat, but most people will look like they're dressing up as a character from "The Matrix."

Leather jacket color

3. Figure Out Your Size

Check out a few leather jacket size charts to see what size you are. Every company has its own size chart, but you can at least get a general idea of where you are, whether you need the smallest size, or a big & tall jacket.

There are three common leather jacket size charts that brands can use. Some brands use small, medium, large and so forth. Some use the American numbered chart, such as 40, 42 and 44, with the number corresponding to the chest size of the wearer. There is also an Italian version of that chart with the difference being that its numbers are 10 higher. For example, if you're a 42 in American sizing, you'd be a 52 in Italian sizing.

Whatever size you fall under, you should still either go to a store to try leather jackets on or shop at an online retailer that allows exchanges if the jacket doesn't fit. You can't always rely on the labeled size to be 100-percent accurate.

If you're buying a jacket off the rack, you can compare your measurements to that brand's size chart to see what size you fall under. You can't trust size charts completely, though, which is why you should always try before you buy. If you order online, make sure the company will let you return the jacket if it doesn't fit.

The fit on a leather jacket should be snug, without feeling too tight or like it constricts your movement. A leather jacket is literally a second skin that you're wearing, and that's exactly what it should feel like in how it fits. In terms of length, the sleeves should come down to your wrists, and the bottom of the jacket should sit right at your waist, unless you've chosen a longer style.

 

Pro Tip: Go Custom Made for a Better Fit

If you go the custom-made route, you have it easy. All you need to do is send your measurements in, and you'll get a leather jacket that fits you perfectly. This is what we do at Independence Brothers – we make you look perfect.

Although you can find leather jackets that fit off the rack, it's not easy to get that perfect fit. Buying a custom-made leather jacket ensures that your jacket fits you exactly how it should. This doesn't necessarily cost an arm and a leg, either.

 

Pro Tip 2: A Leather Jacket Will Break In

Leather conforms to your body and fits better the more you wear it. A jacket that feels very snug when you first try it on could be perfect after a few weeks of wearing it. You still shouldn't buy anything overly tight, but a little snugness is no problem.

The break-in period depends on the skin you choose. A thick horsehide or cowhide could take months before you work out that initial stiffness whereas softer skins will break in much sooner.

4. Learn About the Different Leathers

When it comes to leather, you need to look at both the skin itself and the type of leather.

The toughest leathers are horsehide, cowhide and goatskin, in that order. All three can take some punishment, although horsehide and cowhide are by far the best choice for any heavy-duty activities. Calfskin, sheepskin and lambskin are the softest. Lambskin, in particular, is a very soft, light leather that's used by quite a few luxury brands.

For types of leather, full grain is the skin in its original condition, making it the most durable. Top grain is the skin's upper layer, which means it's a bit thinner and fits better. Split grain is the skin's bottom layer and a popular choice for suede jackets. Finally, there is corrected grain, which is lower quality. Full grain and top grain are the best choices.

Pro Tip: Never Buy Faux Leather

After seeing the prices of a real leather jacket and a faux leather jacket, you may be tempted to go the fake route and save some cash. Trust me – you won't be happy with this decision in the long term. A leather jacket can last you decades. It's something you can pass on to your kids.

A faux leather jacket may not even last you a year. And the difference in quality is obvious. Faux leather has a completely different look, feel and smell than the real thing. If you can't afford a real leather jacket, save until you can, because faux leather is a poor substitute.

Leather jacket fit

5. Select a Color

As you've no doubt noticed, most leather jackets are either black or brown. You can't go wrong with either color. Black leather jacket for men is usually the edgier choice, but a brown leather jackets men often choose, too. It's really about personal preference. A red leather jacket men usually tend not to choose, but it's such a statement and bold piece.

If you just watched "Fight Club," you may be wondering about a red leather jacket. I can't blame you – Tyler Durden looks awesome in that movie. Or, maybe you've got another color in mind.

Most experts warn you about choosing a leather jacket with a unique color, and it's true that you can stand out for the wrong reasons this way. But don't feel like black and brown are you only options. Other colors can look good, too. The key is to avoid anything too gimmicky, because gimmicks only work sparingly, and your first leather jacket should be something you can wear all the time.

Find your first jacket

6. Make Sure Your Choice Is Tough Enough

One last thing to keep in mind is when you plan to wear this leather jacket. If you lead a fairly "low-impact" life, then you can choose essentially whatever type of leather you want without considering how tough it is. If you want a leather motorcycle jacket that can provide protection should you fall off your motorcycle, then you need to get one made from a more durable leather.

For example, lambskin and calfskin are two common materials for leather jackets. They're soft and they look great, but the drawback is that they aren't that durable. Cowhide and horsehide are on the opposite end of the durability spectrum. They may not have that luxurious look you get with the softer leathers, but these thick hides will make you feel like the Terminator.

Pro Tip: Thicker Leather Jackets Start Out Stiff

If you compare, say, a lambskin leather jacket and a cowhide leather jacket, you'll notice a huge difference in the feel right away. Lighter, softer leathers adjust to your body quickly and are easy to move around in. Thicker leathers are stiff when you first get them and take some time to break in. If you get a thicker leather jacket and it doesn't feel amazing at first, just trust that it will improve the more you wear it.

7. Inspect the Jacket

While the material can tell you a lot about the jacket, you need to inspect it to truly assess its quality. Look at the lining to see how strong it is, since rips can be expensive to fix.

Check all the metal hardware, including zippers, buttons and buckles. Good leather jackets will use high-quality hardware. Lower-quality brands will cut corners in this area to save money. The hardware should feel solid, and the zipper should click securely into place. Make sure you look at the zipper brand, as well. RiRi zippers are known for their quality, while YKK zippers are the budget option.

8. Take Care of Your Purchase

The great thing about leather jackets is that there isn't much care required. Still, proper maintenance will help your jacket last a lifetime.

The two things to avoid with a leather jacket are moisture and high temperatures. Leather can handle some rain or snow, but you'll need to let it dry after. Long exposure to extreme heat is bad for leather, which means you shouldn't leave it outside on a hot day.

The occasional application of leather conditioner and leather oil are about all you need to keep your leather jacket looking great. If you don't want to do this yourself, you can take your jacket to a professional leather cleaner about once every year or two.

Custom made leather jacket

To most people, leather jackets are considered an attire for badass individuals. However, this is far from it when it comes to fashion. You want to get a perfect leather jacket to help you rock that classic look!

So, what factors do you consider when out shopping for the best leather jacket? This article highlights some of the tips for you ranging from the size to price and style. The latter takes into account the varying preferences and tastes of each user. You should also know that different designers offer real leather while others sell faux leather jackets. Nevertheless, leather jacket lovers would easily pick one from the other. The material used will also determine the jacket’s price with the real leather jackets often priced highly.

When it comes to buying a leather jacket, you should first decide the type you want to get. You will find flight/aviator/bomber jackets, varsity jackets, and biker jackets. You should then settle on your favorite color and design. Also guiding you in the process is your decision on when you will be wearing the leather jacket and how. It is crucial that you know how to best style your classic leather jacket. The point here is; get the leather jacket that best defines your style.

There are also fake and real leather materials both of which will determine how superb your jacket will look. For instance, you could find faux leather jackets with an amazing quality. This, however, varies depending on the imitation. Some fashion enthusiasts tend to go for faux leather jackets whose style is better than the real types.

This varies with the brand and most designers are keen to indicate that their products are real. But who says that a designer leather jacket is better than those sold on the high streets?

tips for buying leather jacket

Tips for buying the best leather jacket

  • Type of Leather

Like any other fabric, you will come across jackets made from different leather types. There are tough, soft, thick, thin, and many other types of leather. Some users prefer shiny leather while others go for the dull types. Suede leather also exists and other varying textures. The type of leather you choose will determine how versatile and durable the jacket will be.

As you may know, leather tends wear out with time depending on how long it stays exposed to the sun or how you wash it. It will also crease and soften over time, reducing its longevity. How fast the leather wears out will vary based on the type. For instance, leather materials that have a fine texture are long lasting and more likely to wear out evenly.

The right choice of skin of a leather jacket is crucial for many reasons. The skin is what determines the comfort and looks of the jacket. Its performance and durability are also determined by the skin. When considering the leather’s tanning, there are many factors that you should take into account. Here are a few:

  • Most leather does not come from cows. For instance, Bovine leather, also known as steer hide, is a stiff leather and wearing it in takes a lot of time. Therefore, this type of leather should be reserved for practical needs such as for protection when riding a motorcycle. Horse or buffalo hides are similar to the Bovine as well. On the other hand, calfskin is far softer. Being pliable, it feels as if it has been broken-in as soon as you put it on for the first time. In the long run, calfskin simply is less hard-wearing and a better choice.
  • Another choice that you will find is long-lasting, supple and water repellent is goatskin. Sheepskin isn’t as tough as the other leathers and is also lighter than cow or goat. It has been famous for its use on shearling jackets of pilots. Being the lightest and softest skin of all, lambskin is used by many luxury and high fashion labels.
  • When tanned, pigskin is a fine choice due to its being both pliable and soft. Its very minor grain makes it appear smoother than most other options. However, be careful to stay away from poor quality pigskin since it looks remarkably cheap.

When you will be wearing your leather jacket will certainly determine the skin you choose. A great genuine leather jacket is certainly worth it. Remember the lighter hides are far less durable and susceptible to tearing. If you plan to wear your leather jacket when riding your motorbike on a highway, your choice should be a skin that is made from a hard-wearing hide.

 

Consider the Grain

There are various cuts of the raw animal hides used to make a leather jacket. The animal the hide comes from determines the thicknesses of the hide.

  • Full-grain leather: The entire hide is used for full-grain leather. When using the entire hide, the outer layer of skin is used displaying the marks, scars and patterns the animal has pick up. Since only the best quality hides are suitable for crafting full grain leather, jacket made with full grain leather are more expensive. In addition, full grain is thick and rather stiff and will take time to cultivate its natural patina and a unique type of beauty.
  • Top-grain leather: Top-grain leather is considered to be one step down from full grain leather. In order to create top-grain leather, the under layer is removed, and only the outer layer is used. It is more flexible and thinner than the full-grain leather. Its useful application is increased by its being coated with weatherproofing materials and colored stains. As a result, a patina of this leather isn’t developed. However, a top-grain jacket will look the same throughout its life. Top-grain leather is used to craft most fashion jackets currently on the market.
  • Corrected grain: The lowest grade of leather used to craft jackets is corrected grain. In order to mimic the appearance of higher grades of leather, an artificial pattern is stamped on it. If you do come across a jacket made of corrected grain, you most certainly should not buy it.
  • Split grain: Split grain leather is only used to produce suede. It is basically the hide’s underside and then lightly abraded.

 

Consider the Tanning

Another consideration is the tanning of the hide. There are two basic methods considered to be natural and synthetic approaches used today even though many more exist:

  • Chrome: Chrome tanning uses a chemical chromium sulphate. Tanning with this chemical is very quick. A soft and uniformly colored leather is produced by this tanning. It also gives the leather strong weatherproofing. However, this method is horrible for our environment and has a very artificial appearance. Chrome tanning is used to create Nappa leather.
  • Vegetable tanning: Most good quality jackets are made with leather that has undergone vegetable tanning. The centuries-old way of treating leather uses plant matter and wood barks. This method of tanning is both a slower process and, therefore, jackets tanned with this method are more expensive. However, this method is kinder to our environment. It also produces natural, rich hues which hide scratches and buffs. This method of tanning has a downside. Leather tanned with this method tends to discolor or stain a little when wet. Weatherproofing treatments after the tanning is done can make the possibility of leather tanned with this method staining or discoloring lessened.
Invest in a leather jacket

 

  • Jacket detail

When it comes to fashion, the style and design of what you wear matters a lot. Leather jackets are sold with minimal or too much detailing. Some leather jackets come with screaming zippers that may be too much for a classic look.

The types of stitching used on the jacket and any additional hardware should be considered. The detailing tends to flatter your style while classicizing it. Shoulder paddings also vary in bulk and you don't want a leather jacket that makes your shoulders appear massive. You are not playing rugby now, are you?

A leather jacket with too little detailing may end up being a bore to your style. On the other hand, one with too much detailing is not fashionable and may be outdated fast. You should therefore go for a leather jacket that borders either extremes.

 

  • Lining

You want to get a leather jacket with a lining since it is one of the first things to consider in a jacket. You should know that some designers might use bright or clashing lining colors that create a clumsy design. Although some people may love this, fashion lovers prefer the dull or matching colors for the lining so that the leather jacket can be stylish.

Leather also tends to stretch and contract with time, especially depending on the weather. When it is hot, you want a leather jacket with a lining for comfortable wearing. You don't want the leather sticking to your sweaty body making it even hard to move. The best leather jacket is one that comes with a nondescript lining.

 

  • Number of pockets

Although this should have fallen on the detailing section, we thought to discuss it separately. This is because some people prefer leather jackets with numerous pockets. The look is refining and elegant on bikers.

For others, getting a leather jacket with just two pockets on either sides is ideal. This gives them that voguish look desired by everyone.

The idea here is that while shopping, you will definitely get a leather jacket with your preferred number of pockets.

 

  • Price

I feel like this should've been the first thing to consider. Obviously, you can't embark on a shopping spree for a leather jacket without defining your budget. Different brands are sold at varying prices based on their quality. In the fashion industry, expensive does not always translate to superiority. You will find a cheaper leather jacket whose style and quality is higher than another high-end type.

Be it as it may, you should know that a leather jacket is a long-term investment. This dictates that you carry out a thorough research to know what brands are best depending on the customer reviews. Then you can set your price limit. You don't want to get a leather jacket at a cheap price and end up wearing it a few times and it is all worn out. You also don't want to invest heavily on a leather jacket whose quality and durability are questionable.

Wear your jacket right
  • Shape

The best leather jacket is designed to conform to the shape of the user. It should have a subtle shift based on your shape, especially when it comes to your collar and torso.

The shoulders of the leather jacket should also fit perfectly around the shoulders. This is an exception for people looking for an oversized jacket. However, this means your chances of finding the perfect leather jacket are low. You should take caution that the leather jacket is not too wide or too narrow around the shoulders to limit the movement of your arms.

 

  • How to wear it

When shopping for a leather jacket that will give you a chic look, you should ask yourself, "how do I intend to wear it?" Like other clothes, you should know your taste and how you intend to style yourself while dressing. A hooded leather jacket is always a stylish choice. If it is cold, you are probably planning to wear a jumper, sweater, or other heavy attire under your leather jacket. This will force you to get a jacket that is exactly your size for a perfect fit.

When the weather is cool or warm, you are most likely planning on wearing just a T-shirt or other light clothing under the leather jacket. This requires you to look for the jacket that is a size smaller.

 

  • Bust or chest

When buying a leather jacket, you should always consider the size of your chest or bust. For the women with a bigger bust size, we advise that you choose the leather jackets that come with asymmetrical zippers or seams. This is because for such types, you can pull the zip halfway or wear it open. This way, the jacket will not be too small but fitting to your bust size. You will look stylish while remaining comfortable throughout the wearing period.

Find your jacket

Styling the Jacket

Now that you’ve picked out your perfect jacket, you want to wear it out. I find that a leather jacket is appropriate for the entire spectrum of casual events. Have a date coming up and you want to impress? Wear it. Meeting some friends for drinks at a bar? Wear it. Running errands on a crisp Fall day? Wear it. Just make sure you don’t roll into the office in your slacks and a leather jacket. Leather is casual only. One of the easiest ways to wear the jacket is with a simple T-shirt and jeans. This channels that classic James Dean/Marlon Brando style. Add some boots for what is arguably one of the simplest, yet most masculine outfits around. You can also throw on a collared shirt (but keep it casual, nothing dressy) and chinos for a more dressed-up but still rugged look. A leather jacket also works great with layering in some of the colder months. Take a simple, light hoodie and wear it underneath your jacket for an extra layer of warmth when the temperature drops or when you’re outside enjoying a bonfire with company. You’ll want to make sure you don’t layer too much or else the jacket won’t have that perfectly trim fit.

Pro Tips

Most large fashion stores sell leather jackets but I recommend going to a dedicated leather store. The salespeople there will know more about the jackets, leather, and what you’ll need to keep your jacket looking sharp than someone at a Macy’s. The most valuable shopping experiences I’ve had are ones where I learn something about the product I’m buying, so consider taking the extra time to learn about quality, sourcing, and the overall design of a jacket. It’ll come in handy when you buy your next jacket or leather good. I touched on it briefly, but you can glean good information by simply looking at the materials tag. If it says “100% genuine leather,” then the price will likely reflect that.

Jeans and leather jacket

You gotta pick your look

It’s no mystery why vintage leather jackets have such romantic histories: they have been standard issue for several branches of the U.S. military, which is why you see the good guys wearing them in WWII movies. But, the leather jacket has evolved, which is why they have become such important statements for guys eager to impress.

Begin your education by being introduced to four basic types of leather jackets. At least one belongs in your closet. If you’ve got two, congratulations. You’re already a savvy dresser.

  1. Biker bad: Be a bad boy wannabe in a biker jacket, a style that is currently making a big return after decades of being on the outs. This distinct look has lots of potential thanks to signature zippers and unique styling. Even good girls can't resist this retro design.
  2. Varsity vibe: No PhD required to wear the leather jacket that makes you look like a brainiac even if you barely finished your undergraduate degree because you were eager to start writing your success story. The varsity jacket features elements of academia that stand out without asking you to show your diploma.
  3. Bombers away: You don’t have to enlist in the military to resemble a guy ready to pin on wings and fly. The bomber is the quintessential symbol of masculinity; but that doesn’t mean you won't share a cockpit with a lady pilot if the occasion arises now or in the future.
  4. Earthy brown: Black may be back but brown sets you apart from the crowd. Earthy, stalwart, solid and easy to coordinate, the brown bomber jacket says you’re no slave to fashion but love taking your own road. And if that road happens to be littered with adventure or less traveled, so be it.

Does it matter what you wear?

Dr. Jennifer Baumgartner is a specialist in the field of the Psychology of Dress and writes for the magazine “Psychology Today”. Baumgartner's insights into how and why men dress in certain ways are fascinating. She based her findings on interviews with guys who aren't shy about talking about their wardrobe choices and how those choices impact their images. What did she learn from her research? Revelations include these six insights:

-Men are influenced by emotions and may use fashion to make themselves feel better.

-Upwardly-mobile guys evolve over time and their fashion evolution is likely driven by changing lifestyles.

-Today’s man isn’t above emulating fashion-forward trend setters.

-Men’s shopping behaviors are rarely driven by impulse, but rather by need.

-When men go out, they dress for women. At work, they tend to dress for other men.

-Every man’s wardrobe reflects his lifestyle, whether he acknowledges that or not.


PHYSICAL - The Admiral Moto

PHYSICAL - The Suede Double Rider

PHYSICAL - The Technical Bomber

A word about jeans

Check out the page on the “Esquire” magazine website that shows an early pair of Levi’s on sale for the outrageous price of $1.95 around 143 years ago (http://www.esquire.com/mens-jeans/). You’d have to move a few decimal points to bring that price up to today's standard!

Those basic Levis have morphed into a wide range of styles that include unwashed, cropped/folded hem jeans, skinny jeans, slim fit, embellished and ripped designs, according to style trackers focused exclusively on the 2018 jeans market.

So many styles—-but not all of them are appropriate when using a leather jacket as a fashion focal point. Can you imagine yourself showing up in a cool bomber jacket atop ripped or unwashed jeans? And what would it take for you to get the wrong kind of second looks if you paired embellished jeans with a rugged brown military jacket?

Leather jackets and jeans

Jeans and leather jackets 101

Having been enlightened by the words of Dr. Baumgartner’s subjects, it’s time to get to the meat of this guide: pairing leather jackets with jeans to emulate today’s hottest looks. Like jeans, leather jackets shout attitude, protection, durability and longevity, so they’re twin sons of different mothers. To achieve a look you’ll be proud to show off, peruse these pairings and see what works for you.

 

Biker bad:

You don’t need a photo of Marlon Brando or James Dean to pull of this vintage look, but if either inspire you, go for it. Make your acquaintance with Schott, the iconic company that has been around since 1913 and the brand responsible for the Brando look in leather jackets that are almost always sold out.

This jacket features star-shaped, shoulder epaulette studs, belted hem and asymmetrical zipper. Complete your image with APC slim fit jeans, a classic Merino wool sweater and Converse kicks and you’ll look like you stepped off the silver screen back in 1950.

 

Varsity vibe:

If you’re preppy and make no excuses, pairing a men’s leather varsity jacket with jeans could make you feel smarter because you’re a trendsetter. Whether you select a varsity jacket that’s only identified by its signature silhouette or opt for embellishments that run the gamut from contrasting cuffs, waistband and color, you can pull off the look you crave.

The Washingtonian suggests an Oxford shirt, Cordovan lace-ups and perhaps a cashmere V-neck sweater to accompany jeans that had better have a more conservative leg because a skinny jean could ruin the look.

 

Bombers away:

Bomber jackets do double duty when the weather turns bad — especially if you choose one with a hood and/or quilted or sheared lining. Offer a woman your bomber when things get nippy and that thick shearling liner will endear her to you. Does it matter whether the hide is bison, lamb, pig or bovine? Not really—as long as it’s not bonded leather that screams “low quality.”

A solid black t-shirt always passes fashion muster and nothing says “I’m out to save the world” like a Berluti slim-fit wool polo that will require you to open your wallet wide if you add it to your wardrobe.

 

Earthy brown:

Even if you watched World War II films in black and white, colorization revealed the true story: Those original leather bomber jackets were dyed brown to match military uniforms. We don’t have to tell you that Indiana Jones wouldn’t be caught dead roaming underground caves in a black bomber jacket, do we?

In fact, brown is standard for plenty of guys who rock an earthy vibe, though bombers come in plenty of unconventional colors. Can every dude pull off maroon? That’s your call, but “too much of a good thing” can screw up a cool look composed of Ermenegildo Zegna jeans and Harry’s of London sneakers.

Styling the jacket

Important Questions

What are good leather jacket brands?

Schott - The Schott Perfecto is the original iconic jacket. It was the preferred model of James Dean, Marlon Brando, and numerous punk and rock stars.

Belstaff - Belstaff is a British company with a 100 year legacy. Their trademark is a rugged design with a belt and splashproof hand waxing.

Independence Brothers - This company owned by two brothers specializes in custom jackets. Their high-quality leather and craftsmanship shows in each piece.

 

What are the quality levels for leather jackets?

There are thee main quality levels that you should know about in the leather jacket market. The first is the highest grade- the "full-grain" leather. This leather is on the thicker side and is the most durable. They break in and will naturally mold to your body over time. One level below that is "top-grain" leather. These have been sanded and stamped down. They tend to be a little thinner. They don't mold to you, but they don't need to be broken in, and top-grain designs can be significantly cheaper than full-grain. If you want to find something less expensive, look for substitute materials like polyurethane or PVC. Not only are these more affordable, but they are also vegan if you wish to avoid using an animal-derived product.

Leather jacket quality

Final Thoughts

Leather jackets are a worthy addition to any man’s wardrobe It may be expensive, but the upgrade to your style and what it personifies will have you collecting compliments from strangers and ladies. Leather jackets for guys is a must to have in a closet. If you’ve got any other tips or want to share your own experience with your leather jacket, share them in the comments below!

Unless you happen to really enjoy the chaotic, trendy nature of fast fashion consumption, a leather coat will serve you well in the long run. It will never go out of style, especially if purchased in black or brown, no matter the type of jacket - leather biker jacket, cafe racer, motorcycle jacket or even a leather blazer. One of the best things about owning a leather jacket? It will never go out of style, especially if purchased in black or brown. This is one garment you won't have to part with after a trendy season.

Most fashion trends are often curated and marketed by large global retailers whose values are economically-driven. There's more to purchasing a piece of clothing than just making money; you should intrinsically value the importance of expressing your personal style.

Making a statement could be the difference in landing that gig or impressing someone in an authoritative position. Opportunity lies at every turn. Be ready. Pay attention to the fit, quality, and durability of your leather jacket.

We want to end by emphasizing that it's critical to choose a jacket that actually fits you appropriately, rather than trying to squeeze into an ill-fitting one that may look nice on the hanger or rack. It's better to extend your search and potentially splurge on an item than it is to buy one just because it either a) looked nice or b) seemed cheap. We believe in quality over quantity! Do you agree with this logic? Let us know what you think in the comments below and if you found this article helpful, please feel free to share it with your male friends!

We're confident this guide could provide clueless men with the help they need to find their perfect fit of a leather jacket. Every fella wants to feel strong, attractive and suave. What better way to do that than through his style choices? We'd love to hear your thoughts, as we design our garments using the feedback you share with us. Come let us know what you think matters most when it comes to the designing and buying of a classic leather jacket on our website: http://independencebrothers.com/


2 Responses

Jack P. Whitehead
Jack P. Whitehead

April 15, 2019

your article are very important for all jacket lovers specially Biker Jackets lovers.

Metthew C. Kirk
Metthew C. Kirk

April 15, 2019

Wow! Great collection. I like Bomber and Cafe Racer Jackets.

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