What Is the Best Designer Backpack? 

 September 28, 2022

By  Diane Wuthrich

A designer backpack is much more than a coveted status symbol: when chosen well, it can be a worthy investment that will last you a lifetime. That’s why it’s important to think about several of the bag’s features before you invest in a designer backpack. But how do you choose the best one?

There are a few things to consider before buying a designer backpack. Many designer brands are known for quality, but always check the workmanship before buying. A timeless style, as opposed to trendy, is recommended. In addition, consider that its price, material, and maintenance suit your needs.

Read on below to learn more about how to identify the best designer backpacks for your needs.

Which Designer Makes the Best Backpacks

Designer backpacks can cost upwards of $300, which is a hefty price tag.

In fact, some can cost as much as $4,000 or more. The designer name attached to the product commands a much higher price, but there are also other factors that make them a worthy investment. Below are things you should consider when shopping around for the best designer backpack that’s suited for your needs:


All designer products, backpacks included, cost significantly more because of the quality that goes into making each one. Unlike other backpacks, designer backpacks are constructed with premium materials and have to undergo rigorous testing to guarantee its quality and durability. Many brands have also been around for decades, sometimes centuries, which attest to their heritage and workmanship.

Having said that, not all designer backpacks are perfect. It’s always ideal to purchase a designer backpack at a physical store where you can inspect it. Here are some things you should look out for:

  • Is the stitching lined?
  • Can the zipper open and close without problems?
  • Are the seams even and tight?
  • Is the material or fabric consistent throughout the backpack?

Always make sure the designer backpack is in perfect condition before you leave a store. You can also ask the sales associates to bring out new stock for you if you find any imperfections.

However, if you are buying online, the safest bet is to buy from an authorized distributor or the manufacturer’s website. It always helps when they offer a warranty, which should give you peace of mind if a defective backpack was shipped to you.

Timeless Style

Unless you’re a designer bag collector, most people want to get more wear out of their designer backpacks. The best way to ensure this is to select a timeless design, usually in a neutral color or one that complements most items in your wardrobe.

On the other hand, a trendy or season-specific style may not something you will still appreciate a few years down the line.

When choosing a style, also consider the size of the backpack. If you only need a backpack to carry your essentials such as toiletries or cosmetics, your wallet, mobile phone, and a few other essentials, then you can go with a mini backpack. Just be sure to check that its dimensions can accommodate your phone and other items.

If you intend to carry larger things such as a tablet, more toiletries or cosmetics, larger wallets and more, then you can consider a larger designer backpack.


Define an amount you’re willing to spend, and work around that price. Many top-tier designers will fetch four figures, such as Chanel, Prada, Gucci, and Hermes.

There are also many beautiful, timeless pieces that are under $900. These include backpacks by Marc Jacobs, Mansur Gavriel, and Stella McCartney, among others.

If you are unsure of how much you’re willing to spend, you may want to use a cost-per-wear calculator to define the true cost of the designer backpack each time you use it.  The calculation helps to determine if an investment is really worth the high price tag.

The formula simply works by dividing the backpack’s price by the number of occasions you’ll use it. A low cost-per-wear is usually a no-brainer: yes! But if it still has a high cost-per-wear that you don’t feel comfortable with, this is a sign that you need to look for a designer backpack that costs less.

Be realistic about how often you intend to use your designer backpack. For example, if you are looking for a classic black backpack that you can use at work 3-5 times a week and one that can go from day to night if needed, it will be worth the investment. If you think the backpack will only be worn a few times a year, it may not be such a good idea if you’re working with a tight disposable budget.


Different luxury designer houses work with various high-end materials. All of them have specific care and maintenance requirements that should be carefully considered before you buy the bag. Do you want a backpack that can withstand daily use, or are you only looking for one that you can bring out during special occasions?

Sturdy leather and nylon are always good, reliable options because they will last you many years. Calf skin, lamb skin, or Saffiano leather are also great for those who need a sturdy bag. High maintenance materials are usually more textured, such as suede, crocodile or snake skin – though these are delicate and not ideal for daily use.

You can check the product website for a detailed care guide to determine if its maintenance requirements suit your lifestyle and needs.

Our Recommendations for the Best Designer Backpacks

Now that you know the style, material, and budget you’re looking for in a designer backpack, you can have a better idea of which brands are best suited for your needs. There are hundreds of designer brands in the market that you can choose from, many of which are established in terms of incredible artisanship, quality, and heritage.

Under $1,000

Below are excellent designer backpack recommendations that are also affordable:

-   Michael Kors Erin Medium Quilted Backpack: Michael Kors is one of the most famous and affordable luxury brands on the market. This Erin backpack comes in a classic silhouette and sturdy leather, which makes it perfect for everyday use. It’s lightweight, elegant, and can hold many belongings which you will need for daily wear. 

-   Kate Spade Adel Backpack: Kate Spade is known for her approachable and fun style. This backpack is no different: the vibrant colors will make any outfit pop. The soft yet durable leather will last you a long time, but it’s also light and spacious – perfect for school or office use. 

$1,000 and Up

For those who are ready to splurge on a designer backpack, here are some timeless models:

-   Prada Re-Nylon Medium Backpack: Prada was founded in 1913, making them one of the most renowned luxury brands know for heritage and workmanship. The Re-Nylon Medium Backpack one of the best designer backpacks, made with recycled yet durable materials and detailed with Saffiano leather. This is a classic silhouette that you can wear regardless of the season.

-   Hermes Bridado Backpack: Hermes, which has been around since 1837, is one of the biggest designer houses in the world especially for luxury bags. The Bridado Backpack is testament to their artisanship; this versatile bag can convert from backpack to tote, making it a fantastic investment. It’s made with Cheri calfskin and comes in vibrant colors.


A designer backpack can be a great investment. With thoughtful consideration of the many brands and styles out there, you’ll be able to find one that’s perfect for you.  

About the author

Diane is our head writer and researcher for our backpack informational content. Her everyday carry is a Herschel.

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