Understanding Leather Flight Jackets And How To Wear One

Since their inception, leather flight jackets have become a mainstay of winter wear. Their enduring popularity stems from their timeless style, exceptional versatility, and ability to keep the wearer warm even at freezing temperatures.

What are Flight Jackets?

Flight jackets were originally designed to be worn by military pilots. In the early days of aviation, the cockpits were not enclosed, and as the pilot ascended in altitude, the temperatures would drop. They therefore needed a way of keeping themselves warm, and the flight jacket was invented for this very purpose.

Additionally, many early pilots were considered aces or daredevils and had developed a celebrity following which likely contributed to these jackets becoming popular with the general public. A person could put on a flight jacket to resemble a dashing pilot without actually having to be one. Over time, these leather jackets soon become synonymous with mavericks, toughness and risk-taking. They are also strongly associated with the air force and have been popularized in hit films such as Top Gun, The Aviator and Red Tails.

Flight jackets are made from a variety of materials. While leather is the most common, they might also be made with goatskin or silk. The one thing that all these jackets have in common is that they use lots of insulation and are no longer than waist length. The hem and cuffs might also be elasticized. While flight jackets were originally designed specifically for men, women now wear them too.

How to Wear Your Flight Jacket

Although flight jackets are versatile and can be worn with a variety of attires, there are still some fashion rules you’ll want to follow. First, the jacket you wear must fit you perfectly; it should not be too big or small. If you don’t know your measurements, do take the time to find out because you don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars on a jacket just to find out it doesn’t fit you right.

Non-leather flight jackets come in a variety of colors, and are a good option for those who want something other than black or brown. Satin is the best non-leather material, but for those who want to stick with leather, neutral tones are best. Make sure that the jacket you buy has top grain leather. While it will cost more, you can think of it as a worthy investment since it will be thicker with distinct markings and will stand the test of time. Avoid fake or faux leather, as it won’t last long and doesn’t look as good as genuine hide. When wearing your flight jacket, you should keep the rest of your outfit simple so the jacket can be the focal point.

Quality, authentic leather will usually be split on the lower layer with a top that is smooth. They have an elegant finish which is soft to the touch yet durable and flexible. There is really no comparison between faux and genuine leather. If you don’t quite have enough money to buy a true leather jacket, we recommend saving up for one because it will be worth every penny.