by Sarah Makhluf
Sarah is a freelance content writer from Boston, MA. She loves traveling, fashion, and the beach.
Are you on the hunt for the ultimate piece of clothing, one that stands the test of time, one that always gives you an edge, and makes you look confident and polished? A great leather jacket is the only article of clothing which embodies all of the above. Do you know what to look for in a leather jacket, what the different types of leather are, which styles are the most popular right now, and the biggest question of all, what are the best leather jacket brands in America? With so many brands to choose from today, finding the best of the best can be quite the challenge, but not to worry, we’re here to do the digging for you! Keep reading to find out the top 6 best retailers in America.
Before we begin, let’s dive into the various leather types. Knowing which type of leather fits your needs best is the first step in the process. Once you know which animal skin you want your new jacket to be crafted from, the shopping process will go a lot smoother and quicker. While we are on the subject, let’s jump into the different grades of leather. Grades are used to measure the quality of the leather and give consumers a guide while making their purchases.
Cowhide - The most common leather type, because it’s a product of the cattle food industry. By nature, cowhide is very durable due to its dense fibers, so if you plan to wear your jacket on a daily basis, or use it on your motorcycle, cowhide is your best bet. This is the cheapest option, very low maintenance, it won’t scratch easily, and you don’t have to condition it much. Works well for most of the year, and with so many options, finding a cowhide jacket will not be a hard task.
Sheepskin - More lightweight and supple than cowhide, but still quite durable. Sheep hide creates a balance between durability and softness. While they are a bit more expensive than cowhide, many say the extra dough was money well spent. Sheepskin is still warm, but less bulky than cowhide. Sheepskin works great for the fall and early winter months, or, if you get a jacket lined with shearling, you will be toasty all winter long!
Lambskin - The softest of the bunch, but also the most expensive. Lamb hide is buttery soft to the touch, has a high amount of stretch, and feel like a second skin. Lambskin is quite delicate though and can scratch easily. If you are looking for a lightweight leather jacket, lambskin is highly recommended, but if you want to shield yourself from the harsh winter cold, try going for cowhide or sheepskin.
With leather jackets being such a personal purchase, taking into consideration the brand, price, style, and size range should not be overlooked. Leather jackets range from below $200 all the way to well above $2,000, and finding the brand that fits your needs is crucial. Use your leather jacket to portray your personal style, give an edge to your look, and give you that confidence boost only a leather jacket can provide. This is a piece that will stay with you for years to come, so choose wisely. Check out our list below of the best leather jackets you’ll find in America. Starting with the most expensive to the most affordable.
This New-York based fashion house was co-founded by world-famous fashion designer Elie Tahari. Theory embodies class and style. The still young company has 489 retail stores and of course, an incredible online selection. While their prices may be a bit shocking, I’m talking $125 for a T-shirt shocking, they do have a stunning, albeit small, selection of leather jackets. Made from buttery soft lambskin, or sheepskin imported from Italy, one of these jackets will make you feel like royalty. Purchasing a leather jacket from Theory is an investment, but what’s better than investing in yourself and your personal style? They offer spectacular customer service, with an online chat option to avoid waiting in lines or talking on the phone.
221 retail stores
Free shipping options available, and 30-day return policy
They sometimes run sales
Not many styles to choose from
Very pricey, starting at $995.00
Only 6 sizes to choose from, XS-2XL
Leather Zip Jacket
The Frye Company:
While you may have heard of the ever famous, Frye Boots, which have become modern icons in their own right, the leather jacket from this classic American company should not be overlooked.
With the first shop opening in 1863, in Massachusetts, it’s safe to say Frye is one of the founding fathers of the art of craftsmanship. Their boots are legendary, celebrities, cowboys, and hipsters alike can all be seen rocking a pair of Frye Boots. What does every great pair of boots need? Well, a perfect leather jacket, of course. Frye jackets are crafted with the utmost quality and detail. While they may not have a huge selection to choose from, the jackets they do offer are top notch. If you happen to be in a state that has a Frye store, go in and check out the selection in person!
The Rabin Racer Leather Jacket
Arguably, the most popular leather jacket brand, Schott NYC, has been making high-quality jackets since 1913. The humble beginnings and strong work ethic of brothers, Irving and Jack Schott, made the brand what it was. The brand is home to the world-famous Schott Perfecto Jacket, seen on Marlon Brando in the classic 1950’s movie, The Wild One. Even today, when most people picture a leather jacket, the first thing that comes to mind is the classic motorcycle jacket from Schott, while hundreds of brands have followed suit, and created their own versions, the Model 618, will always be the original.
The family owned and operated company focuses on giving men and women top quality leather jackets, giving customers the ultimate fit, all without breaking the bank. How do they do it? The brothers, pride themselves on using the highest quality materials, incredible customer service, and getting the art of leather making down to a science. The most unique thing about Independence Brothers is that their leather jackets are custom made. Meaning, every purchase is hand-made, and custom made to order, choose your color, exact size, lining, and leather material. Going custom means never having to do the guesswork on finding out which size you are, or having to constantly shop around for exactly what you’re looking for.
The Custom Design
For over 120 years, Wilson has been one of the leading leather makers in America. Founded by three brothers, this company has truly stood the test of time. They have a good number of stores scattered throughout the USA, and an online store to compete with the big leagues. Leather is their specialty; they focus on offering customers high-quality pieces at fair prices. Another plus, they not only have a great size range, but they also offer special tall sizes. Plus, since leather is all they do, they offer a ton of different sizes and styles for men and women.
Good prices, starting at $159.00
Plus-size, big/tall options available
Vast range to choose from
Their jackets are not made in the USA
Some made from lower quality leather
Marc New York Leather Jacket
H & M:
The retail giant’s roots may be in Sweden, but today the fast-fashion powerhouse is all over the globe. While they are known for their everyday clothing for men, women, and children, you may be surprised to learn they have a huge selection of genuine leather jackets, and of course in true H&M fashion, all at very affordable prices. With 578 H&M stores scattered throughout the USA, going into a mall without one will be unlikely. The cool thing about them is you can shop for other necessities, like jeans, shoes, t-shirts, and even formal wear. Just in case you don’t have one close to you, their online store is massive, and they have an easy return policy.
Affordable prices starting from $299.00
Many stores nationwide
Not inclusive for larger sizes, XS-2XL
Not a huge selection for leather jackets
Leather Biker Jacket
A good leather jacket will be one of the best purchases you made to date, although finding the right brand can be tricky, we hope this gave you a bit of guidance on the process. Take proper care for your jacket and clean and condition it regularly to keep it in pristine condition, and enjoy many years of use. Searching for the top leather jacket brands in America was a pleasure, we are so happy to shed some light on these some well know, and some lesser known brands. Think of this purchase as an investment, something you will want to cherish and use for years to come. Thanks so much for reading, we hope you learned a little something, if so, please share or leave us a comment below. We always want to hear from you!
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