Thinking of entering the contest?

Excellent! Entering a leather contest can be many things: exciting, challenging, and most of all fun. If you go in with the right mindset, you’re bound to make friends and connections that could open any number of doors for you. Win or lose, a contest can change your life.

You should go in with your eyes open and learn everything that’s expected of you. Attending other contests is a good way to prepare, but the producers caution you to be aware that the Philly contest is unique.

Some elements common to other contests have been thrown out the window to create a leaner event that is more fun for everybody involved. Please read the following information very carefully.


The winners in each category will receive a custom engraved medal, a beautiful back patch and custom-fitted vest, and hotel + airfare + registration fee to compete at a national competition. Additional prizes to be announced. The winner of the Mr. Philadelphia Leather contest in 2019 may choose to compete at either ABW or IML in 2020. The winner of the Ms. Philadelphia Leather 2019 contest may choose to compete at either ABW or IMsL in 2020. Please see the Contestant Agreement on the application for more details.

Judged Categories

  1. Hot Wear / Fun Questions. Wear your hottest or skimpiest gear while answering a question designed to show your spontaneity and sense of humor.
  2. Casual Wear / Serious Questions. Wear your best informal leathers or bar wear while being introduced to the audience and the judges. You will then be asked to answer a question designed to give a glimpse of your serious side.
  3. Formal Wear / Speech. Wear your best formal leathers while giving a 90 second speech on a topic of your choice. When your time is up, your microphone will be turned off — just like they do at IML and IMsL.
  4. Audience Vote. Fifteen years of televised karaoke singing competitions have given us only a small handful of actual stars, but there’s one great thing that we’re happy to steal from them – audience voting. Contest attendees will be able to use their phones or tablets to vote for their favorites online.

There will be brief interludes between each judged category. All contestants should be prepared for fast changes. There will be no private interviews behind closed doors. Everything the judges need to know in order to select a winner will be learned about you that night, on stage, during the contest, as well as from your application.

Back Stage

There will be a brief rehearsal scheduled for Friday night before the contest. On Saturday you must arrive at the bar no later than 4:00 PM. You must bring all of your gear with you. You are allowed to have someone help pack your gear in and out of the backstage area, but your helpers are not allowed to remain backstage or stay in the bar while it is closed to the general public. Your helpers are not permitted backstage during the contest. There will be contest staff on hand to assist you.

The contest is scheduled to last no more than two hours. The order of the categories are as displayed above. It would be to your benefit for you to plan your changes accordingly and stack the deck in your favor as much as possible.

The Mr. and Ms. Philadelphia Leather Contest has been structured to help you prepare for future competitions, such as IML, IMsL, and ABW. These are large contests with a lot of moving parts. It will help you a great deal at the next level if you figure out early how to manage the backstage portion of your contest performance.

Minimum Number of Contestants

Ideally there should be at least two contestants for a title (Mr. or Ms.) in order for each competition to be held. The producers reserve the right to cancel a competition (Mr. or Ms.) if there are fewer than two contestants entered. If a competition is held with only one contestant, then winning the competition will be determined by the achievement of a minimum number of points. The required points will be communicated clearly to the contestants and the audience.

Contestant Requirements

You must be 21 or over and live within a 60 mile radius of Philadelphia.

Contestant Application

All contestants must submit the online application found at the link below and submit it along with a picture and a copy of a state or federal issued identification showing legal name and date of birth (for age verification purposes only) before the deadline of MIDNIGHT on SATURDAY, JANUARY 26, 2019. DEADLINE EXTENDED! to SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 2.

The application period for 2019 is now closed. See you at the contest!

Contestant questions only: contestants@phillyleathercontest.org.