Do you want to treat yourself by buying a beautiful leather jacket? When you’re not a specialist, all leathers look a bit alike… When in reality they are very different! We explain to you the characteristics of each type of leather for a men’s or women’s jacketso that you can make the best choice and find THE jacket that suits you best.
The different leathers for jackets
Lambskin is recognizable by its great suppleness. It is fine, smooth and flexible leather. To the touch, lambskin is soft and velvety. By these advantages, jackets are often made of lambskin. Lambskin can undergo different treatments and various finishes, which makes it possible to vary the effects and renderings. Another advantage of lamb leather: it is easy to maintain (although a little less simple for turned or dipped lamb), just use a colorless cream or the color of the leather.
The sheep has the particularity of being able to keep its wool. The jackets can be in sheepskin, that is to say with the wool inside the jacket and the leather outside (which is perfect for keeping warm in winter). Without wool, sheepskin closely resembles fine, smooth lambskin. Sheep leather is quite easy to maintain with a leather milk or cream.
Resistant and supple, calfskin can be used to make a jacket. Slightly rougher than lamb leather, it is more often used for the manufacture of fashion accessories, such as bags, wallets or shoes. It can undergo different tannings and treatments.
Long used for making accessories or bags, goat leather is increasingly present in ready-to-wear shelves. It is a soft, resistant and fine leather. He don’t bend, which is perfect for velvet or suede jackets. The feel of the leather is slightly grainy.
Cowhide comes from either cow or beef, so it’s a solid, robust and rigid material compared to calfskin or lambskin. To the touch, cowhide leather is thick and not very silky. It is often used for making clothes, including the timeless leather jacket for women, because it is extremely resistant (and it keeps you warm!).
Like cowhide, buffalo leather is super strong and very strong. If it is little used for pants, shirts or other close-fitting clothing, buffalo leather is frequently found in jackets, for its rigid and robust appearance. This is the type of leather that ages the fastest. To delay aging, a varnish is usually applied which gives it a shiny appearance.
Other types of leather for jackets
There are other leathers used for making men’s or women’s jackets. Fallow deer, chamois and antelope all three have a soft and velvety touch. But the antelope is very difficult to work (therefore rare) and suede is no longer authorized on the market, although the term is still used to designate suede or velvet leather. THE horse leather, meanwhile, is the most resistant of the entire range of leathers! For the record, the first perfecto were made of horse leather.
You can find other leathers in the leather jacket departments: ostrich, crocodile, snakes, lizards, and even fish leathers!
Men’s and women’s jackets: leather work
Before obtaining this particular appearance of leather on a jacket or other garment, the skin goes through various stages of treatment. Two terms often come up when deciphering a leather jacket label:
- full flower or flower : this is the side of the hairs, the top layer. A full-grain leather has retained all layers of its skin, while the top layer of a grain leather has been removed. These are generally more precious leathers than split leather.
- split leather : it is the lower layer, on the side of the flesh. These are the strongest leathers. Split leather is also used to produce suede or suede leather.
Tanning consists of transforming the skin into leather, using tannins. After washing, this step makes the leather supple and rot-proof. Tanning can be natural (long and expensive) or mineral (fast and economical). A retanning step is frequently added to perfect the touch. There last step is that of finishing which gives the leather its color and its final characteristics.
How to choose your leather jacket?
Finally, to choose your leather jacket for men or women, consider:
- choose the right size : a leather jacket must be rather close to the body, without limiting your movements, and at the same time a little wide to be able to pass a sweater underneath;
- choose the type of leather you like the most : rather a robust and resistant leather or a soft and silky leather?
- choose a style of leather jacket that suits you : perfecto, bomber, shearling, suede leather, motorcycle leather jacket, etc.
- observe the finishes : the grain of the leather, the pockets (exterior and interior), the collar, the length of the jacket, the closures, etc.
Different types of leather exist for women’s or men’s jackets: lamb, calfskin, cowhide, sheepskin, buffalo, goatskin, and many more. THE best leather for a jacket will be the one you like the most, quite simply!