How to Determine Your Leather Jacket’s Value?

January 12, 2020 - Clothing, Accessories and Handbags

All leather jackets can be pawned.

When it comes to figuring out how much your leather jacket is worth there are dozens of variables that come into play as you critique the jacket.  Yet with price ranges running from $200 to $3,000, you’ll want to know the specifics to get the highest payout for a collateral loan.

It’s recommended that you use PawnGuru if you’re debating pawning your leather jacket. This site will keep you protected, facilitates a trustworthy pawnbroker, and ensures you get the most money possible!

Many fashion designers make the justified claim that if you bought your leather jacket for under $500 you most likely have a low-quality jacket that might not even be authentic leather. A pawn loan can run anywhere from 40-75% off the original retail price depending on who you ask, and which shop you visit. This makes upscale, high-end leather jackets an investment item with strong longevity. This is no surprise considering the iconic flair this particular piece of fashion has become as an emblem of ruggedness since the days of James Dean.

Read on to know exactly what to look for when identifying how much your leather jacket is worth at a pawnshop!

5 Factors that Boost the Value of Leather Jackets

High-Quality Leather

Just because your leather jacket is marketed as the iconic ‘leather jacket’ doesn’t quite mean it’s worth that much. Many leather jackets are made from suede or corrected leather that’s not worth as much as the real deal.

The most common high-quality leather is calfskin. This leather is both soft and durable but also the most expensive. Since the young cow produces less hide this means designers will have to order more, pushing the price point upward. Many designers are also partial to lambskin which is nice because it’s not quite as coarse as cowhides while the traditional cow leather is the most durable. Even higher on the scale of expensive leather are exotic animals like kangaroo, alligator, or crocodile.

  • Corrected Leather

Animals with scarring or other cosmetic flaws on their skin from branding or nicks also lower the quality of the leather. Skins with cosmetic flaws are sanded down and pressed with faux leather grains to appear more substantial. The material is then dyed or treated which is why corrected leather feels more like plastic than authentic leather.

  • Faux Leather

Faux leather is actually terrible for the environment made from chemical plastic that is not worth anything.

  • Suede

Suede has a top level that is genuine leather which is separated from a from the rough bottom layer known as the corium. This material is typically made from goat or lamb. The downside to suede is that it cannot get wet or the textile will get stiff.

  • Full Grain Leather

This term refers to leather that is unaltered, retaining the natural grain (skin pattern) of the animal. Full grain leather has natural pores, making the jacket more breathable. The natural oils from the skin also make the leather more flexible and softer.

  • Top Grain Leather

This type of leather is split from the bottom layers. The split layer is known as the corium, making the leather thinner and more comfortable.


More expensive leather jackets have what’s known as topstitching. This is a decorative stitching that borders seams and pockets. The jacket looks more complete with a quality aesthetic when a layer of topstitching has been added.


The top-quality leather jackets will typically have two different linings—one around the body while the other lines the sleeves. Sleeves are often lined with silk which gives the jacket an avant-garde appeal. A body lining is usually made from a higher quality synthetic—warmer cotton, that insulate and quilt the jacket.

Cheaper linings will most likely cover the entirety of the jacket with a low-grade synthetic cotton.

Armholes & Sleeves

When it comes to evaluating armhole, the rule is—the higher the armholes the better the fit. Higher armholes support flexibility and arm movement so when you raise your arms the jacket’s body won’t rise along with the sleeves. Lower armholes promote uniformity but inhibit arm movement and crumple the jacket as you raise your arms.


The most expensive leather jackets will be outfitted with 2-way main zippers that make the fit more comfortable. You can also let the jacket out from the bottom with a 2-way zipper. These are typically custom-crafted from heavier weighted zippers.

The most common zipper is the cheaper YKK zipper which is made from a lighter metal. This is not favorable. Many designers prefer RiRi zippers which are more durable than YKK and also have a sleeker shine. The price ratio between these two zippers is 10x per each zipper.


Taking all these design elements together you’re most likely to pay at least $750 for a new leather jacket. Of course, you can get a much lower price when buying at a pawnshop using PawnGuru!

Examine your leather jacket closely from the leather to the pockets. The more luxurious elements that adorn your leather jacket the higher payout you’ll be able to negotiate at a pawnshop. If you’re thinking about pawning your leather jacket—click here!

David Stiebel
David Stiebel

David Stiebel is one of the cofounders of PawnGuru. David was educated at MIT, where he studied Math. He subsequently worked at Bain as a data scientist before starting PawnGuru in 2015. He started PawnGuru to build a better tool for pawn shops and consumers to connect.

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March 19, 2019, 7:39 AM

Yes yes i agree to all because i have a sets of Biker Motorcycle Leather Jacket and i love all so i think i really need this content about how to determine our jacket value. Thanks a lot.

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