Leather bomber jackets are among the most popular styles of outerwear. Featuring a genuine leather construction, they offer a classic appearance that’s guaranteed to weather the hands of time for countless years to come. But unless you’ve worn a leather bomber jacket in the past, you might be wondering what exactly makes them so popular. After all, there are dozens of other styles of leather jackets available for sale, so why have bomber jackets become the preferred choice among so many men and women? To better understand its benefits, you must first look at the basic construction of a leather bomber jacket.
Overview of Leather Bomber Jackets
Also known as a flight jacket, a leather bomber jacket is a type of leather jacket that was originally designed for Air Force pilots. Leather bomber jackets feature a genuine leather construction either with or without a fur- or quilted-lined interior for additional warmth. They feature a classic, timeless style that looks great on men and women alike. The defining characteristic of a leather bomber jackets, however, is that they were originally designed for Air Force pilots, so they feature a functional yet attractive style.
History of Leather Bomber Jackets
The leather bomber jacket has origins dating back over a century. During the early 1900, pilots and crewmen of airplanes wore thick leather jackets to stay warm. Back then, airplanes didn’t have pressurized cabins, so high-altitude flights exposed pilots and crewmen to exceptionally cold temperatures. A simple way to overcome the cold temperatures of high-altitude flights was to wear a leather jacket.
In 1917, the U.S. Army launched its Aviation Clothing Board, which focused on producing and distributing leather jackets to its pilots and crewmen. Although they were available in several styles, most consisted of fur-liked wraparound collars with a heavy-duty leather construction.
In the years to follow, countless other leather bomber jackets were released, the two most notable being the A-2 and G-1 jackets. The G-1 was designed by the U.S. Navy as an alternative to the Air Force’s A-2. Of those two styles, however, the A-2 remains the most popular classic choice of leather bomber jackets.
Leather Bomber Jackets vs Modern Styles: What’s the Difference?
Leather bomber jackets share several similarities to modern styles of leather jackets. They are both made of genuine leather; they are both available in similar colors; and you can purchase them both in custom sizes. With that said, leather bomber jackets aren’t necessarily the same as modern leather jackets.
A unique characteristic of leather bomber jackets is their superior level of warmth. All leather jackets can protect you from cold temperatures by insulating your body and minimizing loss of thermal energy. But leather bomber jackets excel in this regard because that’s the purpose for which they were originally designed.
Airplanes today now have pressurized cabins with central heating systems, but back in the early and mid-1900s, this wasn’t the case. To stay warm and protect against hypothermia as well as frostbite, pilots and crewmen wore leather bomber jackets during high-altitude flights. The thick, heavy-duty construction of these jackets offers a superior level of warmth that you won’t find in other, modern styles of leather jackets.
Should I Choose a Leather Bomber Jacket?
Even if you’re not an Air Force pilot or crew member, you should still consider purchasing a leather bomber jacket. They offer several advantages over other coats and jackets, one of which is increased warmth. When the temperatures begin to drop, you can wear a leather bomber jacket to stay warm and comfortable. Its thick, heavy-duty construction acts as insulation for your body, thereby keeping you warm even during those cold winter days.
Another reason to consider buying a leather bomber jacket is its long-term value. It’s not uncommon for other coats and jackets to degrade after a year or so. Thankfully, this isn’t an issue with leather bomber jackets. They can literally last for decades. Some leather bomber jackets, in fact, are over a half-century ago.
Vintage Leather Bomber Jackets
You can even find leather bomber jackets available in vintage styles. What is a vintage leather bomber jacket exactly? Available for sale here at LeatherCult, a vintage leather bomber jacket features the same style as classic bomber jackets that were first worn by Air Force pilots and crewmen during the turn of the 20th century.
How to Maintain a Leather Bomber Jacket
Whether you choose a vintage or modern style, you’ll need to take a few basic precautions to protect your leather bomber jacket from damage. First and foremost, be sure to condition it once every two or three months. This involves the application of a leather moisturizing agent, known as a leather conditioner, to hydrate and protect your leather bomber jacket from dryness.
In addition to conditioning your leather bomber jacket, you should also spot clean it on a regular basis. When your leather bomber jacket is dirty, use a damp washcloth to blot the stained area until it’s clean. In many cases, you can clean it without using any special soap or detergent. For more stubborn stains, though, you can add a small amount of liquid dish soap.
As with all leather jackets, it’s recommended that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the care label of your leather bomber jacket. On this label, you’ll find specific instructions on how to maintain and preserve the original appearance of your jacket. You can typically find the care label inside the collar of your leather bomber jacket. If you don’t see it here, look around the bottom interior of your jacket for the care label.
Leather bomber jackets are prized for their superior quality and craftsmanship. If you’re in the market for a new jacket, you can’t go wrong with a leather bomber jacket. They are soft, comfortable, warm and stylish. Just remember to choose the right size for your body. Otherwise, you probably won’t get much out of your new leather bomber jacket.