Sometimes it feels like we’re living in a backpack world. And I don’t have a problem with that. But I wear a suit or blazer to the office.
I’m a professional, and backpacks just seem juvenile. I need a bag that’s designed to be held in the hand.
I think a lot of you feel the same way, and want the same thing. So let’s help you find it.
Best Messenger Bags: Our Picks
Messenger bags work great for college students and generally people entering the work force for the first time. (Perhaps, you’re a college student or just got a new professional job and are looking for a bag, in that case – I recommend a messenger bag).
- Canvas Messenger Bags. This style of messenger bag is the less formal option. It’s great if you’re a student and you’re taking your bag just to class. Many of these bags are actually waxed canvas, which is really nice.
Leather Messenger Bags
This style is the more formal of the two messenger bags. Leather messenger bags work great for the following types of people: post-undergrad students, office workers, professionals, and generally people that just want to look more formal.
What to look for in a leather messenger bags:
- Leather type. When looking to purchase a high quality leather messenger bag, you want to look for one that is made out of “full-grain leather” or “top-grain leather”. I advise against purchasing a bag made from “genuine leather”. That’s because genuine leather is a lot lower quality than the other options, and it will not age nearly as well.
Obviously if you buy a full grain leather messenger bag, you’re going to be paying a higher price, because it is of course higher quality.
Also beware that REAL leather messenger bags can get quite heavy because leather is heavy.
Best Messenger Bag Brands
When it comes to the best messenger bags brands, there really isn’t any clear cut winners. Let me explain.
There is a certain craftsmanship that is required when making something like a leather messenger bag.
The brands we recognize usually mass manufacture this kind of thing, when really the best messenger bag brands are little known artisan brands that use high quality full grain leather and hand-craft their bags.
Top 8 Best Messenger Bags
Here’s my list of what I feel like are the best messenger bags (both leather and canvas) on the market.
1. KomalC Retro Hunter Leather Messenger Bag
Let’s start with the most important area of any messenger bag, the laptop area.
The laptop area of the KomalC messenger bag is around 16 in, which is big enough for pretty much all sizes of laptops unless you got a behemoth sized laptop. The inside of the laptop pouch is also padded to keep your laptop safe from damage.
The construction of the bag is very high quality. Leather naturally is a heavy material and you can definitely tell this bag has some weight to him. Don’t fret if you notice the leather getting scratched, that’s pretty normal for these types of bags and really it adds to the rustic charm of the bag. Overall high quality stitching, material and construction.
This bag is the real deal when it comes to leather, so if you enjoy the smell of leather, you will love unboxing this bag. It looks very similar to the pictures, so what you buy is what you get.
If the size of a bag is your concern, here’s a few things you should know. This bag will easily carry your laptop, notebooks, pens/pencils, chargers without bursting at the seems. This is pretty much the perfect everyday carry bag.
If you want a rustic leather messenger bag with a lot of character, you cannot beat this bag at this price point.
2. Kenneth Cole Reaction Pebbled Messenger Bag
If you are interested in purchasing a messenger bag that can carry your laptop, but don’t like the bulky look, this is the bag for you.
This is a slim messenger with added interior pockets for a tablet, notebook and more.
The bag has a magnetic snap fasten, and is finished with a pebbled texture.
A subtle texture in a bag gives a little definition while keeping the overall structure sleek and simple. The perfect office bag.
3. Fossil Buckner Messenger
Here is a bag that offers a refined take on the classic look of the military messenger bag.
It has the two front pockets and a leather trim that pulls from the iconic messenger bag look.
However the slightly heathered black nylon keeps it professional.
This option has more pockets, big enough to carry a laptop yet versatile enough for any occasion.
4. Frye Logan Messenger
Frye is known for quality leather products, and the Logan Messenger is no exception.
This bag comes in three colors, a classic light and dark brown leather as well as one in slate grey.
All three keep a classic and well structured bag.
Fit with both zip-up interior pockets and a magnetic snap close, this bag is made to look slim with the classic rugged feel of leather.
5. Ted Baker London Tebac Faux Leather
This is a structured bag perfect if you like faux leather and clean lines.
This bag is sharp and composed but with a horizontal design that sets it apart.
It is also fitted with an interior padded laptop pocket, perfect for someone who likes to keep their belongings minimal.
6. Sweetbriar Vintage Canvas Shoulder Bag
The Sweetbriar bag is a more affordable option for someone looking for a canvas messenger.
This bag offers zip-up interior pockets and the main pocket for a laptop or a water bottle.
It is casual and a less structured option that can be used for the everyday to the office.
There are a variety of color options. To top it off it is fitted with a padded shoulder strap.
7. Berchirly Vintage Military Canvas Messenger
This is a retro military style messenger bag that offers a wide 17 inch main pocket, big enough for the largest laptop.
This bag is less structured, and perfect for a retro style. This bag has plenty
of large pockets and is fitted with a double buckle and a shoulder strap for comfort.
It is made of 100% quality canvas with a leather liner to give the most authentic look.
8. Kenneth Cole Colombian Leather Crossbody
The Kenneth Cole black leather crossbody is another suave and compact messenger bag.
Made from imported leather, and installed with two front organizer pouches, this bag is perfect for someone who has a little bit of everything.
Not only is this perfect for the businessman, but also for travel or just everyday use.
It has the versatility along with a simplistic geometric design.