What are the Different Types of Motorcycle Vests?

What are the Different Types of Motorcycle Vests?

Posted by Team Motorcycle on Sep 28th 2023

A motorcycle vest is an essential part of any biker's wardrobe. With so many options in the market, determining the right vest for your needs can take time and effort. We have covered the most common types of motorcycle vests so you can find one suited to your riding style and keep the thrill of the ride without sacrificing safety.

Types of Motorcycle Vests

There are several types of motorcycle vests designed for different purposes. The most common are riding vests, protective vests, and fashion vests.

Riding vests are lightweight vests meant primarily for comfort while riding. They are usually made of mesh or perforated leather to allow for breathability. These vests may have minimal armor or padding but are not intended to provide comprehensive protection.

Protective vests offer impact and abrasion resistance for safety. They typically contain armor pads for the back, shoulders, elbows, and chest. The outer shell is often made of leather, textile, or a combination of materials. These reinforced vests aim to shield riders from injury in an accident.

Fashion vests are designed more for style and appearance. They contain little to no protective armor or impact-resistant material. The focus is on esthetic details, embellishments, and a flattering cut or silhouette. Fashion vests may be suitable for casual riding but do not provide the safety benefits of other options.

In summary, the type of motorcycle vest you select depends on your needs and intended use. Riding vests offer comfort, protective vests focus on safety, and fashion vests are about style. By understanding the differences, riders can choose a vest appropriate for their unique situation and riding conditions.

Leather Motorcycle Vests

leather motorcycle vest is an iconic riding gear that provides style and function. Leather vests have been popular in biker culture for decades and remain a wardrobe staple for motorcycle enthusiasts.

Leather vests offer minimal protection from the elements while riding, but the thick, durable material does provide some abrasion resistance in the event of a fall or slide. The vest covers the core and back, leaving the arms free - ideal for warm-weather riding.

There are several styles of leather vests to choose from:

Biker vests: Feature classic stylings like an asymmetric front closure, zippered pockets, and patches. These are popular in the cruiser and chopper scenes.

Minimalist vests: A simple, streamlined design with little embellishment. For riders focused on functionality.

Embellished vests: Decorated with eye-catching details like fringe, studs, embroidery or patches. For those wanting to make a statement.

Armored vests: Equipped with protective pads or a protective mesh lining. Provides impact protection for the back, chest, and sides. Ideal for sport bike riders.

Consider weather conditions, bike type, and personal style preferences when selecting a leather motorcycle vest. A high-quality, well-fitting leather vest can last many years and miles in the saddle. Pair it with a protective base layer for cold weather riding or use it alone in warm weather - a leather motorcycle vest is a versatile piece of gear with timeless appeal. Let’s take a closer look at the different types of Leather Vests available on Team Motorcycle:

Men's Premium Leather Classic Motorcycle Vest Plain Side & Belted Waist

This motorcycle vest is designed with convenience and style, featuring a hidden gun pocket equipped with secure inside snaps for safety and ease of access. Crafted from sturdy, premium leather, it offers enduring quality and timeless appeal. The streamlined zip-front closure ensures quick and hassle-free wearability.

For those needing ample storage options, this vest doesn't disappoint, offering multiple pockets inside and out. Four easily accessible outer pockets are perfect for keeping your on-the-go essentials within reach, while two secure inner gun pockets provide concealed carry convenience. Its unique one-panel back offers an ideal canvas for showcasing custom patches or embroidery, adding a personalized touch to your riding gear.

Men's Zipper and Snap Closure Collarless Leather Club Vest

The HMM929 motorcycle vest is designed to offer both convenience and style, featuring a securely stowed hidden gun pocket with inside snaps outside the zipper for easy accessibility. Crafted from ultra-soft, thick, premium naked leather, it promises exceptional durability and comfort. Its dual 5-snap and zip front closure ensures a perfect fit and a sleek look. Regarding storage, this vest is flexible, offering generous capacity with multiple pockets inside and out for all your essentials.

Four practical and easily accessible outer pockets are ideal for on-the-go convenience. Inside, you'll find two inner pockets, one of which features a deep gun pocket equipped with a barrel and clip elastic for secure firearm storage. The striking USA Flag Premium Liner adds a patriotic touch, and the unique one-panel back provides the perfect canvas for personalizing with patches or embroidery, making it a versatile addition to your riding gear.

Men’s Leather Club Vest with padding Quick Access with American Flag Liner

Men’s leather club motorcycle vest combines practicality and style with its concealed gun pocket designed for quick and secure access using inside snaps positioned outside the zipper. Crafted from luxurious, ultra-soft, thick, premium naked leather, it is durable and comfortable. Its streamlined dual 5-snap and zip front closure ensures easy wear and a perfect fit.

Regarding storage, this vest offers plenty of options with multiple pockets inside and out, making it easy to carry your on-road essentials. Four conveniently placed outer pockets provide quick-access storage, while two spacious inner pockets, including a deep gun pocket with barrel and clip elastic, ensure secure firearm storage. The patriotic USA Flag Premium Liner adds a touch of American biker heritage, and the vest's unique one-panel back provides an ideal canvas for personalization with patches or embroidery, making it a versatile and stylish addition to your riding gear.

Men's Zipper and Snap Closure Collarless Leather Club Vest

This collarless leather vest offers a blend of security and style with its discreet hidden gun pocket, equipped with inside snaps positioned outside the zipper for quick and secure access. Crafted from luxuriously soft, thick, and durable, premium naked leather ensures long-lasting ride comfort. The convenient 5-snap and zip front closure allows for a secure and adjustable fit.

You can easily carry your essentials with ample storage options, including multiple pockets both inside and out. Four outer pockets provide quick and easy access to your belongings, while two inner pockets, including a deep gun pocket with barrel and clip elastic, ensure secure firearm storage. The patriotic USA Flag Premium Liner adds a touch of American pride, and the vest's one-panel back is an ideal canvas for personalized patches or embroidery, making it a versatile and stylish addition to your riding gear.

Men's Black Premium Cowhide Leather Buffalo Nickel Biker Motorcycle Vest

The buffalo nickel motorcycle vest is crafted from premium cowhide leather, ensuring it's durable, comfortable, and stylish. Its unique Buffalo Nickel front snap closure offers a secure fit and a touch of vintage charm. You can easily access your essentials with two convenient outside pockets featuring snap closures. Inside are two concealed carry pockets, providing discreet and secure storage for your safety equipment.

The sleek single-back panel design enhances the overall aesthetic appeal of the vest and is ideally designed for patches, allowing easy customization and personal expression. The breathable mesh lining ensures relaxed and comfortable rides, even on longer journeys.

Mesh Motorcycle Vests

Mesh motorcycle vests are made of a highly breathable mesh material that allows for maximum airflow and ventilation. The open mesh weave prevents overheating while still providing abrasion resistance. These vests are ideal for hot summer riding conditions.

However, the mesh material offers minimal impact protection on its own. Many mesh vests provide pockets for optional CE-approved armor inserts for the back, shoulders, elbows, and chest. The mesh also allows moisture-wicking base layers and padding to be worn underneath. Popular brands of mesh motorcycle vests include Alpinestars Meshes, Joe Rocket Phoenix, and Firstgear Mesh Tex.

Cortech Niterider Mil-Spec Safety Vest

The Cortech Niterider Mil-Spec Safety Vest is designed with practicality and safety. It's made from lightweight and durable hi-flo poly mesh construction, ensuring comfort and longevity. Safety features include total coverage reflectivity, making you more visible in low-light conditions. The vest also offers convenient storage options with a left chest zippered I.D. pocket, right chest hook, and loop name patch.

For versatility, it's equipped with Molle webbing for easy accessory attachments. The vest is secured with a zippered front closure and an emergency whistle buckle. You can achieve a personalized fit with dual adjustable side waist belts, and the zippered hand pockets provide additional storage. It has belt loop attachments and a removable EVA foam back pad for added protection and comfort, ensuring a safe and enjoyable riding experience.

Textile Motorcycle Vests

Textile motorcycle vests are constructed of abrasion-resistant and reinforced fabrics like ballistic nylon, polyester, and Cordura. These materials are more durable and protective than mesh alone. Many textile vests also incorporate mesh panels in high-heat areas to improve airflow.

In addition to impact protection pockets, some textile vests provide waterproof or water-resistant outer shells for all-weather riding. The reinforced fabrics and optional armor provide more robust protection for the torso than a standard mesh vest. The Alpinestars T-GP Plus R and the Olympia Switchback are well-known textile vest brands.

Men's Premium Black Textile Motorcycle 10 Pocket Vest

This Men's Premium Black Textile Motorcycle 10 Pocket Vest is designed with bikers in mind. It's made from tough and durable man-made materials that can handle abrasion, ensuring its longevity. The tightly woven textile looks great and keeps you comfortable with its breathability during long rides. Its classic design features an antiqued snap style closure for that timeless touch.

The dual exterior watch pockets and peaked bottom hem add a Southern gentleman style. For practicality, it includes metal zippered exterior pockets for secure storage, while the lace-up rib area allows for a customized fit. Inside, a silky liner adds comfort, and there are plenty of interior pockets for your belongings. Plus, concealed carry pockets offer added protection while on the road, making it a versatile and reliable choice for bikers.

Jafrum MV720Matt Men's Black SOA Club Style Textile Motorcycle Vest

The Jafrum MV720Matt Men's Black SOA Club Style Textile Motorcycle Vest is designed for convenience and style. It features a convenient snap and zipper closure for quick and easy access. You can securely store your belongings in the two chest pockets with snap closures and keep warm in the two hand warmer pockets equipped with zipper closures.

There are two inside pockets with a concealed carry holster for added safety. The vest is built to last with its fixed mesh lining, ensuring durability. Plus, you can personalize your vest effortlessly with the one-panel back, perfect for attaching patches. It's a practical and stylish choice for motorcycle enthusiasts.

Men's Black SOA Club Style Leather Trimmed Textile Motorcycle Vest

The Vance Textile Men's Black SOA Club Style Leather Trimmed Motorcycle Vest offers a perfect mix of convenience and security. It features a 5-snap and zipper front closure for ease of use. You can organize your essentials with two outside snap pockets and two outside hand warmer pockets. The vest's sophisticated leather trim around the armholes adds to its style. Inside, the fixed polyester lining provides comfort and durability.

There are two inside concealed carry pockets for added security, and for easy access, there's a dedicated cellphone pocket. This vest is designed to meet your practical and style needs while on the road.

Denim Motorcycle Vests

Denim motorcycle vests are a popular and versatile style of vest. Denim is a durable and comfortable material that protects while riding yet remains breathable. Denim vests come in various washes, from dark indigo to light faded blue, allowing you to choose a shade that matches your style.

Denim vests can be an ideal choice for riding in moderate weather. They provide more protection and warmth than a T-shirt alone. For colder weather, consider wearing a denim vest over a hooded sweatshirt. You can also add a thermal layer underneath for extra insulation.

Men's Black Denim Collarless Motorcycle Vest

This denim vest is made from durable and high-quality material, ensuring it lasts long. It's fully lined for added comfort and protection while riding. With eight pockets, you have plenty of storage space for your belongings. Plus, there's an inside gun pocket for added security when carrying firearms.

Men's Denim and leather Motorcycle Vest with Dual Conceal Carry Pockets

This motorcycle vest offers a perfect fit that's true to size, ensuring it suits every rider comfortably. It features a club style with a sleek one-inch preacher collar, covered snaps, and a hidden zipper for a polished appearance. The vest also keeps you organized with two buttoned chest pockets and two buttoned slash pockets to store your essentials securely.

There's an interior concealed carry pocket on the right side for discreet storage for added safety and convenience. You'll experience maximum comfort as the vest is fully lined on the inside, and it's made with uncompromising quality, equipped with YKK zippers known for their durability and reliability.

Men's Blue V-Neck Denim Vest for Motorcycle Riders

This motorcycle vest is crafted from rugged 12oz. Blue Denim combines a casual style with comfort and a touch of fashion. It features a classic V-neck design for that timeless look. With two snap slash pockets, you can keep your hands warm or carry small items conveniently. There's also an inner concealed carry pocket for added security. The vest's fully lined interior enhances comfort and ensures long-lasting durability, making it a reliable rider choice.

Jafrum Men's Black Denim Jean Vest

Upgrade your riding gear with the Jafrum Men's Black Denim Jean Vest, expertly crafted to combine style and functionality. It features five brass-looking front snaps for added security and a stylish touch. The fixed mesh lining ensures breathability and comfort during your rides. This vest is made from quality, heavy denim and offers superior durability and style.

You can achieve a customized and comfortable fit with the snap-style adjuster. The vest also provides ample storage with multiple pockets, including 2 inside conceal carry pockets, inside zipper pockets, and outside 2 snap chest pockets, and 2 hands warmer pockets for storing your essentials. Plus, the plain and customizable back panel lets you personalize your vest. Ride in style and comfort with this versatile denim vest.

What types of motorcycle vests are there?

There are several varieties of motorcycle vests designed for different riding styles and weather conditions:

  • Mesh vests are breathable and ideal for warm summer riding. They are lightweight and help keep you cool.
  • Leather vests provide protection and durability. Classic leather vests work well for most riding conditions.
  • Textile vests made of abrasion-resistant fabrics like Cordura nylon are lightweight but durable. They are a more affordable alternative to leather.
  • Heated vests generate and retain heat to keep you warm in cold weather. Rechargeable batteries power them.

Do I need a vest for riding?

While vests are not legally required for riding a motorcycle in most areas, they do provide several benefits:

  • Added visibility to other motorists. Brightly colored vests make you more conspicuous.
  • Impact and abrasion protection. Armored vests help prevent injuries from falls or collisions.
  • Comfort. Vests help shield you from the elements like wind, rain, and sun exposure. They can make long rides more enjoyable.
  • Style. Vests allow you to customize the look of your riding gear and show off patches or club colors.
  • Motorcycle vests are highly recommended for your safety and comfort, especially for long-distance touring. The specific type of vest depends on your needs and riding conditions. With the variety of options available, you can find one suitable for any motorcycling purpose.


    As you have learned, several motorcycle vests are available based on your needs and riding style. Whether you prefer the classic look of a leather vest, the utility of a mesh or textile vest, or want to make a statement with a patch vest, you now know to select a vest that fits your personality.

    The open road awaits the rumble of your bike beneath you. Throw on your favorite vest, feel the wind on your face, and enjoy the journey ahead. The right gear can make all the difference in your riding experience, so choose wisely and ride safely. The adventures that lie before you will create memories to last a lifetime.