7 Best Welding Jackets Reviews & Buying Guide (2019)

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Just as important as your gloves, mask, and boots, if not more so than some, is your choice of welding jacket. It covers the largest surface area of your body and protects you from a whole lot of unwanted pain from everything from spatter, to slag, to arcs.

Even more so than your other protective equipment, a jacket has to be the best fit for you. It can’t be something that restricts your movement or even doesn’t work well in your natural climate. Today we’re going to take a look at a broad variety of jackets for all purposes, and see which ones come out on top.

In a Rush? Here is Our Top Choice

Lincoln Electric K2989 Heavy Duty Leather

Lincoln Electric K2989
  • Durable leather construction.
  • Three layer protection near the buttons.
  • Full leather front and sides.
  • check
    One large inside pocket for protected storage.
  • check
    Collar and neck protection.

 Top Welding Jackets On The Market [2019]


Top 7 Welding Jackets - Reviews


1.  Lincoln Electric K2989 Heavy Duty Leather Welding Jacket - Top Pick

This jacket is a keeper. It’s made primarily of flame retardant leather; heavy weight split cowhide on the front and sides that protects you from pretty much anything. It’s primarily designed to protect you from splatter and arcs even when doing out of position welds.

The back is instead a flame retardant cotton (ASTM D643 compliant) that improves air flow from the back, keeping you cool. Because of where I live this is one of my primary concerns, so it’s nice to see it on such an otherwise heavy duty jacket.

The buttons have a 3 layer splatter guard on them: leather, fabric, and Velcro working in tandem to make sure there are no gaps sparks can fly through. The neck can be velcroed tightly shut for similar protection beneath your mask or helmet. The cuffs similarly snap shut, this time with chrome snaps instead of Velcro.

Rounding things out is a nice internal pocket for storing stuff you need to keep on you safely.

Pros

  • Durable leather construction.
  • Helps keep you cool in warm climates.
  • Three layer protection near the buttons.
  • Collar and neck protection.

Cons

  • Price. This jacket is definitely more expensive than other leather welding jackets out there, but you get what you pay for.

2. Caiman 3029-5 Black Boarhide Welding Jacket

Another leather jacket, this time in boar hide, rather than cow hide. Pigskin provides all the protection of cow leather (and even a bit more) but with more flexibility and less weight, making it a great choice for welding jackets.

The overall construction of this jacket is great, It has a large, easy to reach interior pocket, and venting on the underarms and back to keep you cool when you need it, while not compromising the integrity of the jacket for either protection from splatter and arcs, or from the cold in colder climates.

This is also the only jacket her that even comes close to being stylish. Not my first choice, but if fashion is a concern for you I wouldn’t be embarrassed to wear this straight off work to certain casual social events.

The only thing I really don’t like is the collar. It’s more of a standard jacket collar than the high, sealed collar most welding jackets provide, giving you a bit less protection. You could say it doesn’t matter with a proper mask that covers you that low, but it’s always good to have that little extra, especially on an area as sensitive to injury and pain as the throat.

Pros

  • Boar hide is superior to cow leather in most respects, making this an excellent material for welding jackets.
  • Lightweight and breathable without skimping on protection.
  • Good in cold weather.
  • Looks good.

Cons

  • Not a fitted collar, providing less protection to the throat area.

3. Revco BSX BX9C Flame-Resistant Welding Jacket

This is what I’d call an “infrequent welder jacket”. It’s good and cheap, but likely won’t stand up to long, repeated use or a lot of more intense overhead welding.

It’s made of a flame resistant (note: not retardant; it’s naturally fire resistant but is not chemically treated) cotton. This means it breathes well, and is great for working in very hot climates without melting in the heat. The collar comes all the way up to the neck and sleeves are lengthy, with metal snap cuffs for extra protection.

Of note, it has two interior pockets for a lot of storage if you need it, which combined with the other features makes it a decent shirt to wear to most job sites, not just welding. A lot of different jobs (like grinding) throw up a lot of sparks too, after all, so if you’re a multipurpose worker, this is still a good choice.

The Black Stallion jacket won’t win any awards, but it’s great for the price.

Pros

  • Two interior pockets.
  • Fire resistant cotton.
  • Breathes well in the heat.
  • Very cheap.
  • Good neck and cuff protection.

Cons

  • Not very durable, and will likely burn up after a few months of use. Not a heavy duty jacket by any means.
  • Won’t keep you warm if you’re working in a colder climate.

4. Waylander JC850 Leather Heat Fire Resistant Welding Jacket

High quality materials carry this jacket. It’s made of three primary materials: grade a cow leather, fire retardant cotton, and flame resistant Kevlar stitching, for a trifecta of fire resistance.

The interior is satin lined for extra comfort, and the primary construction is the cotton, making it a good jacket for regular use as well as welding, and helps you stay relatively cool in warmer weathers, with the leather reinforcing adding extra heat resistance on the sleeves and shoulders, where it’s most needed.

3 pockets to keep your stuff in gives you plenty of room for all your necessaries, and a Velcro collar protects your neck from errant sparks and keeps your chest closed as well.

It’s a great all purpose jacket you can wear in both hot and cold climates, on and off the job, and in most situations. It’s very versatile for the price.

Pros

  • Three material construction for a combination of comfort and protection.
  • Heavily fire resistant despite the light construction.
  • Good price.
  • Nice look.

Cons

  • Not so great for overhead or out of position welds due to the cotton stomach.
  • Less durable than a full leather jacket.

5. Gotega Heat & Flame-Resistant Welding Jacket

This jacket takes a novel “less is more” approach, being a hybrid between a jacket and an apron. It has full protection from the front, down to about mid-thigh or knees on most people, but is completely open in the back, held together by two easy straps and some Velcro.

This means it can be about half the price of a normal leather jacket, because it uses about half the material, for (in theory) no downside. It’s even naturally cool in the back (similar to our winner, Lincoln Electric’s jacket with the cotton back) without any need for fancy construction.

It’s got a good high collar that’s comfortable, though the sleeves are a bit baggy. The cowhide material is hard to argue with though, being everything you want: thick, durable, splatter resistant, and fire retardant.

The only real design flaw I’d say is the straps. They’re designed to easily go on, but they’re your standard thin cloth and plastic affair you’d find right at home in a department store’s shopping cart. They’re prone to wearing out quickly, bending or getting stuck in certain positions, and all around the weak link that holds this apron/jacket back.

Pros

  • Durable cowhide provides a lot of protection.
  • Price is down because it uses less materials, making it both affordable and protective.
  • Easy to put on.
  • Fits any size (unisex).

Cons

  • Cheap straps won’t hold up for very long.
  • In the rare cases it matters, this jacket provides no back protection.

6. Steiner 1260 Welding Jacket

It’s not pretty, but it’s a good setup for warmer climates. The center vest area is Weldlite 9.5 ounce Navy cotton, with cowhide leather sleeves.

I’m not too big a fan of the specific kind of leather here, mostly because it sheds a lot, making it kind of a pain compared to smoother leather.

Still it’s lightweight but has protection most of the places it counts. The one weird omission is leather on the sleeves…but not the shoulders, where it’s equally as needed in many cases. It also has an unfitted collar, meaning you might want something else to wear around your neck.

But the buttons are fitted right with good quality snaps (though no Velcro) and the sleeves are adjustable as well.

It’s not the best jacket out there, or even of this type, but it’s serviceable and perhaps most importantly, very cheap compared to other options with any leather components to them. A great intermediate jacket for a welder that needs mostly light protection, but may have occasional heavy splatter.

Pros

  • Lightweight and easy to wear.
  • Non-reflective snap front and wrist closure.
  • Protective arm leather.
  • Relaxed full cut fit.
  • Very affordable.

Cons

  • Fuzzy leather is messy.
  • Cotton portion will likely fall apart sooner than the sleeves.
  • Not a great cold weather jacket.

7. Miller Electric 2207775 Welding Jacket

This is about as basic as it gets, and as affordable as it gets too. I’ve bought t-shirts that cost more than this jacket, which is good because it’s the kind of jacket you’ll need to replace not too long after buying it.

It is 88% cotton, 12% nylon, making it a little stretchier and more breathable than regular cotton, but also a smidge less fire resistant. This is the kind of jacket you wear while you’re training to weld or if you weld pretty infrequently, because it will burn up pretty quick if you’re trying to weld in it every day.

There’s not too many features to mention, but it is a well designed jacket for what it is. It has a high collar, snug fit wrists, and an interior pocket to store all your must have stuff.

You could do a lot worse for the price, but if you’re looking for something to wear long term, you probably want to look elsewhere.

Pros

  • Super affordable cotton construction.
  • Comfortable and easy to wear.
  • Good protection from most standard splatter.
  • Fold-In snaps cuff style.

Cons

  • Wears out quickly.
  • Not good for heavy duty work.
  • Won’t stand up to overhead welding.

Our Top Choice

Lincoln Electric K2989 Heavy Duty Leather

Lincoln Electric K2989

Lincoln Electric’s cow leather jacket is hands down the best, closely followed by Caiman’s boar hide. The leather construction just can’t be beat in either durability or protection, and both are breathable enough to make heat concerns moot. The only reason I’d buy a cotton jacket is if I was a very infrequent welder. Otherwise, shelling out the extra money for a long lasting jacket that won’t burn up is the right choice, at least to me.

Click here if you are looking for reviews of other safety accessories like welding helmets.