In Search of the Perfect Motorcycle Jacket

Photo: Melissa Hom

Motorcycle jackets, like the basic white tee, can be considered a wardrobe staple. When thrown over any outfit — pointed heels, jeans, or a simple summer dress — they bring a nice urban edge, and they’re a great choice for outerwear in transitional seasons, providing a protective layer of warmth without the bulk of a winter coat. And while a great motorcycle jacket is pricey, they’re worth saving for because their tailored construction lasts forever— just make sure you find the right one for you. Aside from cut and tailoring, look closely at the lapels, zippers, pockets, and buttons. Everything needs to fall just-so or else the whole jacket looks a bit off.

In pursuit of finding my perfect classic moto-jacket, I test drove nine different styles in a wide range: from a shawl-collared Rick Owens, to a classic boxy fit by Acne, to a quilted Balenciaga, and everything in between.