Kenickie (Jeff Conway) and Danny (John Travolta) in Grease
As everyone knows, Danny and Kenickie were the best of friends. This was because they both liked behaving badly at school, having complicated love lives and wearing leather jackets. This made them cool. See, even wearing a leather jacket as naff as the ones this pair sported gave them enough style kudos to be the most desirable men at Rydell High.
It’s because it’s an iconic piece, tied in memory to rebellion, to being tough and dangerous. But there are many different styles and many different ways of wearing it. The question is, which is the one that’s right for you? We’ve rounded up your main options…
The Indiana Jones
Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones
Harrison Ford’s iconic archaeologist/adventurer was a macho man of action, a wisecracking alpha male who could disarm any enemy with his whip, and his choice of attire followed this blueprint – tough, battered and full of character. Aside from that fedora, his signature piece was a well-worn and practical brown leather jacket, which he donned with a lack of vanity and plenty of testosterone.
The James Dean
Brooding and beautiful film star Dean was Hollywood’s Rebel Without A Cause
, and the pin-up was the first to give the leather jacket its bad boy reputation. His persona of troubled yet sensitive dreamboat was helped on by his simple but striking Aviator jacket, white tee and jeans combo – effortless cool.
The David Bailey
Aneurin Barnard as David Bailey in the BBC's We'll Take Manhattan
In the Sixties Bailey was among the hippest of hip young things and good looking, creative types like him put as much effort into their wardrobes as their chat-up lines, mixing up mod styles with some East End flair and donning Chelsea boots and neat little jackets in the softest Italian leather to show off their fashion credentials.
The leather jacket is a piece synonymous with rock stars, none more so than New York’s finest punk rockers. Joey, Johnny, Dee Dee and Tommy had the band look down from the very start, appearing onstage in matching leather biker jackets from their earliest gigs. Their skinny jeans and messy hair added to the impact - creating the deliberately dishevelled look that remains a classic for front-men today.
The cast of the Matrix
When The Matrix
exploded onto screens in 1999 it not only revitalised the career of star Keanu Reeves, but also kick-started a style resurgence for sleek leather outerwear. But these aren’t just any old bomber jackets, the Matrix leather effect was like the film – directional, creative, clever. Sometimes floor-skimming, sometimes unusually cut – the serious fashion thinker’s choice.