June 3, 2023

People have many different opinions when it comes to style, but here’s one of the universal truths: Everyone wants their outfits to look expensive. Shopping for frugal items is one thing, but actually looking like you’re wearing something cheap is another, which is why you may have noticed that I talk about deceptively inexpensive basics ad nauseam. Going for minimalist separates is a tried-and-true approach to achieving this goal, but I found another one, courtesy of my feed—faux leather.

Of course, it’s a given that genuine leather can instantly level up any outfit, but its faux sibling has come a long way since its stiff, plasticky-looking days. The real thing can be pricey, but with so many high-quality faux-leather and vegan-leather options (I love Nanushka) that feel just as soft and luxurious, who needs it anyway? This is why leather alternatives have become a stylish shortcut to achieving an air of luxury, even for people on a budget.

From wide-leg leather trousers to saturated leather jackets, the luxurious fabric is on the limbs of every cool person worth their salt these days, and it’s a hack I’m taking up myself. Whether you go for real or faux, the trend makes every outfit look expensive, adding a lush and premium touch. Scroll below to see how the style set is wearing the staple as well as several leather pieces that will leave you feeling like you’ve increased your net worth.

Leather Outfits: @emilisindlev wears a pair of bright leather trousers

Chunky-chain jewelry and biker jackets—does a better pairing exist?

H&M Leather Biker Jacket
Leather Biker Jacket

Arket Chunky Bracelet
Chunky Bracelet

Next Up: These 11 Elite Winter Outfit Ideas Simply Can’t Be Beaten