Shearling, from the Germanic word for shear or shave, is skin from a sheared sheep that is tanned and dressed with the wool still on. The suede surface is on one side and the fur on the other; usually the suede is worn on the outside, but it can be reversed as well. Shearling coats, also called sheepskin, have been used throughout history to keep humans warm. Iron age humans (as far back as 1050 BC) have been discovered still wearing their shearling coat (!)
Warmer than down yet lighter than fur, shearling jackets strike the perfect balance in cold weather between rugged and chic: a fresh break from the traditional wool coat. Shearling coats, like their synthetic counterparts sherpa coats, are also very versatile during in-between seasons functioning much like a leather jacket.
Sometimes they have a quilted lining which makes them easy to slip on and you’ll find most shearling coats have two or more pockets. Usually, the collar is lined with shearling, keeping your neck stylishly warm. Known for their flexibility shearling coats come in a wide variety of styles to compliment, or make, your look.
Best Brands for Men’s Shearling Jackets
Easily one of the best winter coat investments you could ever make, this Reiss Dennis Black Shearling Jacket is a smart, jet black wool blend. Soft and sleek with a black shearling collar, Dennis is the black stallion of shearling coats.
With a quilted satin lining, the fit is fitted but spacious enough to layer over a knit sweater. Pair with black jeans and boots to stay warm and wildly elegant.
If you’re looking for a shearling aesthetic at an affordable price point, the Levi’s Sherpa Trucker Jacket is a topcoat that has everything you need. The front does double duty with a zipper and snaps closure, two snap pockets, and two zipper pockets.
The inside is lined except for the sleeves which helps keep your core warm without becoming sweaty. The hidden inside pocket is a good enough size to actually be usable.
Mr. Porter is known for its modern and quality menswear, making it one of the best brands for men’s shearling jackets. Mr. P delivers with a mod and streamlined Shearling-Trimmed Suede Trucker Jacket.
This suede jacket offers a more lightweight option when you want some warmth without any bulk. The slick two-way zipper, two chest flaps, and two front slash pockets are all subtle touches helping this jacket work for you, seemingly effortlessly.
The 100% lamb shearling collar is the crisp icing on the cake. Return to nature and explore your style in this olive-green goat leather topcoat.
As usual, Mango doesn’t disappoint with their version of the best shearling jacket. With a fine grain corduroy shell in Cognac, Black, or Navy and a fully lined faux shearling, this jacket is just long enough to keep your back covered and just short enough to compliment a well-fitted trouser.
With a cotton-blend fabric and recycled polyester padding, this shearling is from Mango’s sustainable collection. Soft on the inside and out this corduroy coat is a big warm hug.
If a shearling jacket and a bomber jacket had a baby it would be the B-3 Shearling Bomber Jacket. The B-3 is not Schott’s invention, but they have definitely nailed it with this one.
It will keep you warm in the coldest weather, protecting you from whatever life brings without drowning you in weight. With subtle but strong detailing, the two front handwarmer pockets, double buckle collar, and waist adjustment buckle are all strategically placed.
The beauty of handmade craftsmanship is alive and well in the Dehen brand who, since the early 1920s, have been making jackets and coats practically perfect in every way.
The Naval N-1 Deck Jacket is a waxed canvas shell with mouton fur lining. Mouton (“sheep” in French) is sheepskin that is processed to resemble beaver or seal fur.
This modern and nostalgic statement piece has a 6-button placket-front closure with a hidden zipper and a matching inner zipper. Weather any storm with this extraordinarily well-made topcoat.
Features You Need in a Shearling Jacket
Shearling jackets are especially helpful in weather that is cold but not rainy. Since each coat has its own density, pick one (or two) based on the climate where you live.
Of course, a faux shearling coat won’t last as long as a genuine shearling coat, however faux can be the perfect option when you want something stylish, affordable, and workable.
Although heavier a genuine shearling coat will be more breathable. If the time is right for a sheepskin jacket, pick your style and don’t be afraid to take the plunge.
How to Clean Your Shearling Coat and Maintain it Well
If you’re wondering how to maintain a shearling coat, the key is surprisingly simple. Spot clean with a small amount of water and a damp rag each day or as needed. In general, you should only have to self-clean a couple of times a year, or before you store it.
Just as the outside, the wool can be spot treated with a clean damp rag. Use a few drops of wool cleaner if the stain is stubborn and let the jacket air dry.
Keep in mind that genuine shearling shouldn’t be put in the washing machine or the dryer. Depending on your shearling jacket’s specifications you may be able to use a water-resistant spray for extra protection.
Store in a dry place away from direct heat, either in a garment bag or in cardboard, and enjoy for life!
How To Style A Shearling Jacket
A men’s shearling jacket can complete any look, whether you do your morning errands or heading to a smart event. Opt for a pair of black skinny jeans, a white crewneck tee, black brogues and just thrown the jacket over the top. This is a really sleek and simple look and you probably already have the wardrobe basics at home to recreate it.
Another safe way to wear it is with a pair of raw indigo denim jeans, some rugged boots and a lightweight knit or T-shirt underneath. For a more, streetwear feel Kanye-West-look, go for a looser style of jeans paired with Timberland boots and a hoodie on top for a fuss-free feel.
If you want a more formal option, a pair of grey formal trousers, a classic white oxford shirt, a cable knit jumper for a splash of color and brown brogues will do the job.
Complete with a brown biker shearling jacket and a tie underneath your knit to add some extra detail without going overboard.