7 Reasons Why Are Leather Jackets Are So Heavy

why are leather jackets so heavy

Leather jackets are heavy. That’s one of the first things you notice when you try on a leather jacket for the first time. It feels like pulling on an old-fashioned set of armor. But why are leather jackets so heavy?

Leather jackets can range from lightweight to very heavyweight. The weight of the jacket usually depends on the type of leather that is used, as well as other factors such as the thickness and construction or design of the jacket.

There are several other reasons why leather jackets are so heavy and in the rest of this article, I will go through each of them.

1. Jackets Made From Real Leather Are So Heavy

One of the basic reasons why leather jackets are so heavy is because they are made from real leather.

Leather is a natural product and it has unique properties that make it sturdy, durable yet flexible.

Leather is made from the skin of animals and as we are all aware, the skin is the largest organ on the body and consists of multiple layers of tightly woven epithelial tissues.

This causes leather to have a much higher density than most materials used for jackets. So when real leather is used to make a jacket, it is going to be heavy.

2. The Type Of Leather Used For The Jacket

Another reason why leather jackets are so heavy is the type of leather that is used to make them.

There are different types of leather, and the heavier varieties are usually used for making jackets. The most common type of leather used for jackets is cowhide.

Cowhide is a strong and durable type of leather that comes from the hide of a cow. It is usually thick and has a heavyweight to it.

Other types of leather that are used for jackets that make them heavy include buffalo hide, bovine hide, and deerskin.

All of these types of leather are much heavier than the standard types of fabric that are used to make jackets and will significantly make the leather jackets they are used for heavier.

On the other hand, if the leather jacket is made of lambskin, calfskin, or even faux leather, it will usually be lighter.

So as you can see, the type of leather used for the jacket is a major factor in how heavy it will be.

3. The Type Of Lining Used For The Jacket

Another factor that contributes to the weight of leather jackets is whether it has a lining or not and the type of material the lining is.

Leather jackets with simple cotton or silk lining or another non-insulating lining can result in a very lightweight leather jacket.

However, if the lining is made from insulating materials such as fleece or thermal fibers that are used to keep people warm, then it will add to the weight of the leather jacket.

The type of lining material also determines how thick and heavy your leather jacket would be so you need to take this into account when choosing a jacket.

4. The Construction of The Leather Jacket, Design, Or Style

The construction, design, or style of the leather jacket can also make it heavier. Biker jackets, for example, are usually heavier than other styles of leather jackets because they have a lot of extra details and features that make them more rugged and heavy-duty.

The same is true for the bomber or aviator jackets which also tend to be heavier than regular leather jackets.

Leather blazers and suits, on the other hand, are typically much lighter because they have fewer details and are usually not as heavily constructed.

For example, if a leather jacket has multiple panels that are pieced together with heavy stitching, it is going to be much heavier than a single-panel jacket.

And if there are lots of zippers and pockets added on, this will also make the leather jacket weigh more.

In addition, if a leather jacket has multiple layers of insulation sewn into it to keep you warm in cold weather, then this will also contribute significantly to its weight.

So the style or design of the jacket can also contribute to how heavy it is.

5. The Quantity Of Findings Used On The Leather Jacket

Leather jackets like the racer or biker jackets often use a lot of metal findings (fittings and fasteners) to give them a more rugged look.

This includes metal zippers, eyelets, rivets, snaps, buckles, and studs. And all of these metal fittings add weight to the jacket.

Some leather jackets also have faux fur or other types of the lining that are attached with hooks or velcro. And these also add weight to the jacket.

So if you are looking for a lighter-weight leather jacket, you should avoid ones that have a lot of metal fittings and extra details as this will make it weigh more.

6.The Quality Of Accesories Used On The Leather Jacket

Jackets made of real leather usually also come with high-quality accessories or hardware.

Real leather is an expensive material and there is no way a manufacturer will use an expensive leather material to make a leather jacket only to use cheap inferior hardware on it.

So if you are looking for a good quality leather jacket, you should expect to find high-quality accessories like zippers, snaps, and buckles on it.

And all of these accessories or fittings will contribute to the weight of the leather jacket when your wear or carry it around.

7. Old vs New Leather Jacket

The weight of a new leather jacket will be different from the weight of an old leather jacket.

Newer jackets may seem thicker in the early stages because they are still stiff and it is difficult to bend them.

However, as you wear the jacket more often or keep it for a long time, the leather will soften up and become supple making your jacket lighter in weight over time.

But older jackets have the opposite effect because the leather starts to dry out with age so even though it is thinner, it will seem heavier because of the lack of flexibility.

There is also a common school of thought the proposes the opposite – leather jackets that have been worn over and over again and have been conditioned with oils and waxes will be heavier because the application of these products adds a tiny bit of weight.

How Much Does A Leather Jacket Weigh?

We have talked a lot about how leather jackets get so heavy but how much does a leather jacket weigh?

Well, it really depends on the style and design of the jacket. A regular leather jacket without any extra features or details will usually weigh between 2 to 3 pounds. But if you have a biker or racer style jacket with a lot of pockets, metal findings, and accessories then it can weigh up to 5 pounds or more.

Again, as mentioned before, there are a lot of factors that come into play when it comes to the weight of a leather jacket.

So it is important not only to look at style and design but also to consider other factors such as how much insulation, padding, or any extra details are on your jacket.

When choosing a leather jacket for yourself, it is important you consider the use of the jacket, how comfortable it fits, and a few other personal factors so you can choose the best option for yourself.

Does Heavy Leather Jacket Mean Quality or Better?

As you can see, there are over half a dozen reasons why leather jackets tend to be so heavy. This, however, begs the question of whether a heavy leather jacket is better?

The short answer is no. It has nothing to do with the weight of the material as lighter-weight materials can also be found in high-quality jackets.

Meaning you do not want the weight of a leather jacket to deceive you into thinking it is a better product.

The quality of a leather jacket is based on the materials used, the construction and stitching, brand, price, and a host of other factors.

So if you are looking for a good quality leather jacket, be sure to focus on more than just the weight of the jacket.

Final Thoughts

So there you have it, the 7 most common reasons why leather jackets are so heavy. It’s not just because they are made from a sturdy natural material, but also because of the type of leather used and whether or not it has a lining.

The most common types of leather used in jackets are cowhide, deerskin, or, bovine hide. All three are heavyweights compared to other materials such as cotton or nylon.

Cowhide is the heaviest of the three and it is one of the most common leather materials all around the world – so chances are the majority of leather jackets you will find on the market are going to be made of cowhide, hence they are going to be heavy.

Thanks for reading my article on why leather jackets are so heavy. Be sure to share this with your friends and family.


Hi! I’m Kwabena, the owner and founder of Favored Leather. I’m a huge Leathercraft enthusiast and I’ve been that for almost 13 years now. I'm excited to share my experiences and all the new stuff I learn each day about leather craft, leather cleaning & care, and everything in-between!

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