The Ultimate 2023 Leather Jacket Shopping Guide

Let’s play a quick round of Family Feud: Fashion Edition, shall we? If Steve Harvey were to ask, “What’s a quintessential investment piece in every wardrobe?” the top-grossing answer from a stylish pool would likely be a leather jacket. 

Leather jackets of all iterations dominated the Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 runways, from Khaite to Prada to Saint Laurent. Most fashion folks love their ability to single-handedly punctuate an ensemble, even one as simple as jeans and a T-shirt; as a bonus, the innate ‘idgaf’ attitude they exude is unmatched. As Sandy famously demonstrated when she traded in her girl-next-door persona for a leather motorcycle jacket in “Grease,” the right one can instantly imbue authority, fearlessness and killer sex appeal. 

There are a few routes you can go to procure the right leather jacket for you. I’ve personally gone so far as to enlist the help of The Jacket Maker, a leather-making service offering a customizable step-by-step design process, to bring my visions to life. There’s also Atelier Savas, which offers made-to-measure leather jackets to fit you perfectly.

Bespoke options can be pricey though, and there are no shortage of excellent off-the-rack leather jackets. Although dubbed an “investment piece” for good reason, bargain shoppers and animal lovers can find equally covetable options made from faux or upcycled materials, like those of responsible leather brand Deadwood Studios.

From moto to puffer, Fashionista’s favorite leather jackets for 2023 and beyond are presented below to shop and peruse. (And, once you find your new baby, be sure to care for it wisely!)

Leather Jackets With Shearling

Hefty, cozy and durable, shearling-trimmed leather jackets are the most timely of the bunch given their hygge practicality. On recent snowy escapades, none other than the Jenner sisters have been cycling through this season’s hottest shearling jackets, from rustic Aviators to vintage Alaïas. Professional Hot Girls™ Kendall, Gigi Hadid and Doja Cat covet Simon Miller’s shaggy Penny Lane-esque Jetz coat, so the cropped version feels like a sound investment. And for fans of faux, House of CB’s new-season bomber jacket will stand firm through ever-changing outerwear trends. 

Leather Bombers

Oversized bomber jackets took over both Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 runways and the fashion set hastily jumped on board. Relaxed, oversized silhouettes cinched with ribbed-knit cuffs and collars are the sartorial drug of choice at the moment. The Attico and Magda Butrym launched luscious sheepskin renditions while House of CB offers a vegan alternative that equally embodies the 90’s grunge look. 

Leather Puffers

Ah yes, the evergreen puffer coat, an east-coast staple every winter. The whole crew of fashion’s cool girls — Taylor Russell, Kendall Jenner, Hailey Bieber and Kylie Jenner — are all head over heels for Loewe’s Spring 2023 cropped, padded, puffer jacket right now. But we’d be remiss not to mention Aritzia or Stand Studio, two of the most beloved labels for their highly sought-after (and often sold out) quilted leather puffer jackets.

Leather Varsity Jackets

House of Sunny kickstarted the letterman trend last winter when its buzzy varsity jackets took over Instagram, and they return this season in a batch of new colorways so good that I can’t choose (but if I had to ,the Barbie-core option takes the cake). Also highlighted at Louis Vuitton’s Spring 2023 menswear show, (and previously Versace, Monse & Jeremy Scott), this trend is clearly picking up steam.

Oversized Leather Jackets

If fashion’s hottest runways or “It girls” are any indication, the supersized look will continue to reign supreme well into 2023. The crowd favorites? Del Core renders a larger-than-life aviator silhouette’ Maja Dixdotter of By Malene Birger advocates for a vintage feel and Ronny Kobo unveils the perfect leather topper for her party-ready frocks.

Leather Racer Jackets

Few would have put the motorcore trend on their 2022 BINGO cards, except for fans of F21 and Rosalía, of course. The cool kids (see: Rihanna, Dua Lipa, Bella Hadid, and *ahem* Kim Kardashian) have all taken to the sportif look with open arms; suffice it to say, Motomami-core has surpassed micro trend status. Diesel offers a subtle interpretation in sleek black, or get the full race-girl look with House of Sunny’s matching Racer Pants. 

Leather Trench Coats

Oozing sex appeal, it-factor and dominance, a long leather coat will get any job done — point blank. The multifaceted style can skew a mélange of ways so approach the trend with your aesthetic goal in mind. Now’s the time to live out your Zoë Kravitz dreams as a Saint Laurent Catwoman in Brandon Blackwood’s ostrich feather-trimmed trench, or in Zadig & Voltaire’s longline blazer style, which feels very “High Fidelity.”

Cropped Leather Jackets

The simplest way to elevate a leather jacket is to bare a little midriff. Marc Jacobs takes inspiration from eveningwear with his “ball jacket” while Et Ochs’ version is belted at the waist. Loewe takes ‘cropped’ extra literally with a short-sleeved moto style which, let’s be honest, is a leather jacket-lover’s dream top. Coupled with a coordinating mini moto skirt? A biker-chic moment to die for.

Leather Blazers

Similar to the trench coat, the tailored blazer jacket is another professional workwear staple that feels extra striking in leather. Victoria Beckham offers a cropped, fitted blazer while Gauchère sent oversized jackets down the Spring 2023 catwalk. Good American offers an affordable faux version, while Autumn Adeigbo’s rich mahogany style can be worn right into the boardroom, and it’s thoroughly sustainable to boot. 

Leather Moto Jackets

Out of all the names in the hat, moto jackets warrant no introduction but, for the history buffs: Using leather in outerwear first originated with shearling-lined aviator silhouettes during World War II, and shortly thereafter, Irving Schott developed the first motorcycle style that still serves as our blueprint today: bulky, durable hyde and heavy silver hardware. Off-White and Wilsons present archetypal options with a classic look and feel. For something edgier — and trust a moto jacket should skew edgy, if nothing else — no one’s nailing punk-themed leather right now quite like Enfants Riches Déprimés, beloved by goth couple Kourtney and Travis.

Leather Shackets

A leather boyfriend shirt is both dependable and versatile, making it a fail-safe option for unreliable forecasts come spring showers. Plus, a leather shacket looks just as good with jeans and a baby tee as it does over a mini dress while commuting to cocktail hour. A simple leather polo jacket pairs beautifully with knee-high leather boots and virtually any dainty Reformation dress. Cinch the relaxed shape with a self-tie belt a lá Ksubi or try a bright color via Staud.

Embellished Leather Jackets

Strong, stark and powerful, leather jackets are a statement all on their own. But for the bold types, embellished, printed, and sculpted renditions may be just the boost your alter ego needs to make power moves this year. If you’re looking to turn heads, Deadwood’s two-tone diamonds, Akira’s heavy studs, or Other’s painted bones are all very striking, rock n’ roll-approved options. 

Leather Vests

Between Miu Miu and Raf Simons’ final show, Spring 2023 collections predict vests will have a big moment in the new year. Leather jackets’ sleeveless counterparts are partially the result of motorsports’ sudden foray into fashion, but they also call to an impending rockstar-core trend which, if you haven’t caught a whiff of it yet, entails lots o’ leather, hardware and animal prints — think “Coyote Ugly” vibes. Take the biker route with Harley Davidson or try a gorp-core-approved tactical vest from Iro Paris.

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