Protecting leather jackets from the rain - is it waterproof?

Is Leather Waterproof?

Posted: 10th February 2016 in ,

Is leather waterproof? Well, there is a question that if left unanswered could end up costing you the price of a new coat. Not what you want if you have just forked out for a brand new one. So, is it?

Put very simply, water is no friend to leather. When leather gets wet and dries it causes the material to stiffen and lose its natural supple appeal. Not only this but the leather can then begin to crack, and then require some TLC to restore it back to normal. One thing we would like to emphasise is that all leather needs treatment from time to time to keep it at its best. A leather jacket that gets cared for is a leather jacket that stands the tests of time and still looks as good as the day you bought it.

Taking action to waterproof leather boots is a normal step, and something many people look into, but waterproofing their jackets is something that is not very common. One product that is very effective at waterproofing leather is Nikwax. This product is aimed at shoes and boots but will also work on jackets and coats. While we would never say that after applying this it turns your leather jacket into a storm proof rain coat, because it won’t, we will say that it will fair better in a light shower/drizzle, and wouldn’t damage your jacket as much as it would left untreated.

Bikers are the reason many products out there exist for waterproofing leather, but there is no reason you couldn’t use these products to waterproof a casual leather jacket. Duckswax is one such product that is very popular with bikers and can also be used on casual jackets to give them a bit of protection against the weather. People have said that it brings their jackets up to a level of Gore-Tex water tightness, however, like other treatments it does require regular application to get the full effect and benefit from the product. One key point that really jumps out to us it that DucksWax keeps the jacket breathable and claims to add no shine, which is a factor that puts many people off waterproofing their jackets.

This shiny or glossy shine from waterproofing products is something that we want to highlight as something to watch out for. This can alter the texture and sometimes the colour of the jacket too. Make sure that you apply the product to a small region of the leather, as a tester, to make sure that you are 100% happy with the outcome before applying to the whole jacket.

Remember that with any treatment to leather it will eventually wear away so you will have to top up the treatments from time to time. Treatments will also be needed after washing your leather jacket. Unsure how to give it a wash?

So there you have it, it’s not a common thing to do but it can be done! Should you want to waterproof your leather jacket here are some good ways to go about it.