If you're anything like me, you've long been on the hunt for a bag that carries your laptop but doesn't, well, look like a laptop bag. Chances are, you've already checked out the best laptop backpacks on the market and decided that you want to opt for a laptop-friendly tote instead. Or maybe your canvas bag simply isn't cutting it anymore. Whatever the reason, the editors at Marie Claire have rounded up the best laptop bags for women, and our picks are hard to beat. We spoke to designers and women on the go—from content creators to entrepreneurs to writers—to find the very best laptop bags to shop now (and carry forever).
To figure out what makes a great laptop bag the best laptop bag, I spoke to two women who design work bags for a living: Shilpa Shah (opens in new tab), the co-founder of CUYANA, and Jenny Lei, the founder of Freja New York. Both women cited versatility and ease of use at the top of their list. "A good laptop bag should carry you seamlessly from your office desk to a dinner reservation," Shah told me.
Another top priority? A laptop bag’s ability to seamlessly take its wearer from day to night. “I live in NYC, so when I leave in the morning I’m often not returning home until 9 or 10 p.m.! My bag needs to work overtime too,” said Lei. “That means being professional enough for work, roomy enough for my gym attire, and appropriate to bring to a nice dinner. I don’t want to feel the need to hide it or stuff it under my chair!”
Best Deals on Laptop Bags
Madewell The Medium Transport Tote |
$168 $118 (opens in new tab)
Madewell's holiday sale is offering some insane bag deals, so snap one up while it lasts. Our recommendation? The Transport Tote. "This is the clown car of laptop bags, and I mean that in the best way possible," says our Entertainment Director Neha Prakash, citing the bag's roomy design and high-quality materials. Shop it now for 30% off with code "VERYMERRY."
Madewell The Zip-Top Transport Carryall |
$198 $140 (opens in new tab)
Yes, it's another Madewell bag—and yes, we stand by our choice. This leather tote doubles as a shoulder bag thanks to its long strap, and can be monogrammed. The perfect holiday gift for the most stylish woman you know (which might well be you). Shop it now for 30% off with code "VERYMERRY."
- Best Affordable Laptop Bag for Women: Lubardy 15.6 inch Laptop Tote Bag (opens in new tab)
- Best Laptop Bag with the Largest Color Selection: Rothy's The Essential Tote (opens in new tab)
- Best Durable Laptop Bag: Cuyana Classic Easy Tote (opens in new tab)
- Best Customizable Laptop Bag: Cuyana System Tote (opens in new tab)
- Laptop Bag With The Best Closure: Longchamp Large Le Pliage Tote (opens in new tab)
What to Look For In The Best Laptop Bag
It's all about structure, according to Lei. "Laptops can be quite heavy, and I need a bag that can stand on its own. I love a good slouchy tote as much as the next person, but it’s not what I want when carrying a laptop,” Lei says. “I need to be able to set my bag down without worrying that it will topple over. Structure also provides extra protection for your laptop.”
The Best Laptop Bags to Shop
Best Laptop Bag on Amazon
"This tote is my holy grail work bag! I bring anything I could possibly need to work just in case of an emergency—makeup, deodorant, dry shampoo, hairbrush, and gum. On top of all of that, I bring several notebooks, a water bottle, and my laptop so I need a bag that can carry it all and this Amazon pick does just that. All of my essentials have their own dedicated spots thanks to the tote's many pouches and sections. Plus it's completely waterproof and has held up well through months of everyday wear. " — Brooke Knappenberger, Editorial Fellow
Pros: Costs under $200; Comes in 12 colors and prints; Can hold a 16" laptop; Has several internal pockets for extra storage and organization; Has a zip closure.
Cons: Reviewers say it doesn't hold its shape.
Best Colorful Laptop Bag
"BAGGU makes the cutest laptop cases (opens in new tab) around, so I was obviously into this colorful padded tote from the brand's collaboration with Urban Outfitters. Great for someone who hates carrying black accessories into the office, it has a zip-top closure and padded straps for maximum shoulder comfort. It also pockets both on the inside and on the outside, so there is room for all of your belongings—not just your laptop. It measures just under 20” in length, so it can hold a 15” laptop with ease.” — Julia Marzovilla, E-Commerce Writer
Pros: Can hold a 15” laptop; Has interior pockets; Has exterior pockets; Has a padded shoulder strap; Costs less than $200
Cons: Won’t go with every outfit.
Best Canvas Laptop Bag
"It's no secret that I'm obsessed with the various iterations of Longchamp's Le Pliage, from the tiny backpack (opens in new tab) that somehow holds everything I need to the top-handle tote (opens in new tab) perfect for ferrying your laptop to and from the office. But for the ultimate do-everything Le Pliage, I love the Large Tote. Not only will it carry your laptop and other essentials in a waterproof, stylish package, but it can double as a weekender bag (opens in new tab) in a pinch." — Jenny Hollander, Director of Content Strategy
Pros: Costs under $200; Has a zip closure and a snap closure; Made from easy-to-clean material; Waterproof material; Has long shoulder straps; Comes in several colors; Holds most laptops.
Cons: Has one small interior pocket.
Best Roomy Laptop Bag
"This is the clown car of laptop bags, and I mean that in the best way possible. It's incredibly spacious so you can fit not only your laptop, chargers, and work necessities, but anything you need to go from day to night without a pit stop at home—gym shoes, an umbrella, a makeup bag, and a snack. And thanks to Madewell's timeless design and quality leather construction, the bag will hold up for years (probably longer than your laptop)." — Neha Prakash, Entertainment Director
Pros: Comes in three colors; Costs under $200; Has longer shoulder straps; Holds a 15" laptop.
Cons: Has only one interior pocket; Is unlined; No closure.
Best Crossbody Laptop Bag
Slightly different to the other Madewell tote bag on this list, the Zip Top Transport Leather Carryall deserves its own spot. "Madewell is my favorite brand for a leather tote and their Transport Carryall is the perfect size to carry my laptop, charger, and miscellaneous beauty products that are usually littered at the bottom of my bag. The straps are very durable and hold up when I wear it as a crossbody, best part is the adjustable strap belt!" — Alexis Gaskin, Freelance Beauty Writer
Pros: Costs under $200; Has a zip-top closure; Fits a 15" laptop; Comes in several colors; Has three interior pockets; Has a long shoulder strap; Is monogrammable
Cons: Is unlined.
Best Carry-Everything Laptop Bag
"I'm embarrassed to admit to how many bag straps I've ripped over the years, but I will say that I accepted it as inevitable—until I started using Cuyana's leather tote. On the surface, the bag is well-proportioned, spacious, and, in the daffodil colorway, an instant mood-booster. The bag's low-and-wide design holds everything I usually carry—a 15-inch laptop, a lunchbox, my books, pens, and other miscellaneous doodads—with ease, and the flat base prevents things from becoming flipped around (a plus for someone who packs very saucy lunches). I toggle between the two strap lengths depending on what I'm carrying, and the soft leather design is comfortable on my shoulder, despite the fact that my things weigh approximately a million pounds.” — Lucia Tonelli, Social Media Editor
Pros: Comes in several colors; Sustainably made from real leather; Fits a 16" laptop; comes in two depths; Has two strap lengths.
Cons: Costs over $200; Has only one interior pocket for your phone; No closure.
Best Neoprene Laptop Bag
"Somehow this bag never gets dirty—and if there's one thing I want to feel in an airport, it's as clean as possible. I've traveled all over with this, and it still manages to look pristine (s/o to the neoprene material). Perfectly fits my 15" laptop along with all my other tech gadgets, and looks sleek + chic on top. Plus it slides over my suitcase handle....yes, I am in love with a backpack." — April Lockhart, Senior Manager of Influencer and Partnerships, ILIA (opens in new tab)
Pros: Made from waterproof neoprene; Holds a 16" laptop; Easy to clean; Fits over a suitcase handle; Has several pockets; Comes in several colors; Comes in three sizes; Has dedicated interior pocket for your laptop; Has a zip-closure; Has a pocket for your waterbottle
Cons: Costs $200.
Best Low-Key Laptop Bag
"The Freja Lafayette Tote is my everyday bag and has been for the last year! It has the perfect amount of functionality, the oat color is so chic and pairs with absolutely everything, and the vegan leather is such a breeze to clean. The unique handles are a conversation starter and the contrast lining adds both a pop of color and hides any unsightly marks or stains. I also love how understated it is, and you’ll probably never run into anyone else wearing the same bag. " — Jenny Lei, Founder of Freja New York
Pros: Made from vegan leather; Comes in several colors; Fits a 16" laptop; Has three interior pockets; Has a magnetic snap closure.
Cons: Costs over $200;
Best Laptop Bag for Summer
"My favorite laptop bag I own by far is my Loewe basket bag. It's designer without being in your face, and the size is actually perfect for a laptop and other essentials. Since it's a smaller bag with wide straps, it doesn't feel too heavy or dig into my arm. I can run around the city for hours without it hurting my shoulder which is necessary since I’m always on the go - between events, designing florals for brands and being at my own store!" — Abby Price (opens in new tab), founder of Abbode
Pros: Has wide straps; Fits a 16'' laptop; Lightweight design.
Cons: Costs over $200; No closure; Not great for all seasons; Is unlined; Has no interior pockets.
Best Fun Laptop Bag
"For years I'd stash my laptops in bags that looked professional and uber-serious for the office. But in a new, power-casual world, I'm ready to sport fun work bags, especially for the summer days ahead. Rebecca Minkoff's M.A.B. Hobo Bag, with its silver dog clips and sleek zipper tassel, brings the right amount of accents. But it's still a practical pick: The Sand Dune leather option goes perfectly with sundresses and work outfits alike. It's roomy enough for a laptop (with an interior of 13'' W x 10.75'' H). The strap can convert to a shoulder or cross-body so that you can adjust it for comfort." — Tanya Benedicto Klich, Senior Editor
Pros: Has a convertable shoulder strap; Has a magentic closure; Comes in several colors.
Cons: Costs over $200; Won't fit a 16" laptop; Has one interior zip pocket;
Best Laptop Bag for Post-Grads
"My personal favorite, which is also perfect for a “first timer,” is our Cuyana System Tote (opens in new tab), created with a 3-in-1 approach in mind. The System Laptop Sleeve (opens in new tab) and System Flap Bag (opens in new tab) can be easily snapped in and taken out, all pieces can work together or stand alone. This tote was designed to effortlessly transition throughout the day with you, while holding everything you need." — Shilpa Shah, Co-Founder of Cuyana
Pros: Has customizable interior pocket options for purchase; Comes in several colors; Has thick shoulder straps; Comes in two sizes depending on the size of your laptop; Has a magnetic closure.
Cons: Costs over $200.
Best Chic Laptop Bag
"I use this laptop bag literally every. single. day. It goes with any outfit, whether I have on one of my power-lady blazers or something more casual (just add the crossbody strap!). I love that it looks polished and professional but not stuffy or boring. Plus, it's highly practical: There's a specific place for my laptop but also easily accessible pockets for my phone and keys, and a zippered closure—a must when commuting by subway." — Danielle McNally, Executive Editor
Pros; Has a zip-top closure; Has four interior pockets: Fits a 15" laptop; Has an adjustable shoulder strap and a top handle.
Cons: Costs over $200.
Best Quilted Laptop Bag
"My love affair with this MZ Wallace tote started when my kids were infants. I transformed it into a makeshift diaper bag that kept me organized on-the-go. Now that my kids are out of diapers (thank God!), I still use it to carry everything: my laptop, makeup bag and all the beauty products I’m testing." — Deena Campbell, Beauty Director
Pros: Fits a 15" laptop; Has thick shoulder straps; Comes in 2 colors; Has a zip-top closure; Has interior and exterior pockets.
Cons: Costs over $200
Best Faux-Leather Laptop Bag
"I was using just a plain canvas tote bag prior to this bag from Everlane, and I don’t think I’ll ever go back. It’s made from organic prickly pair rather than leather, and holds up just as well. It’s just over 20 inches wide so it holds my laptop without it moving around too much, features a sleek interior pocket for the valuables I want to keep on hand, and comes in two neutral colors. I own the black iteration, and it has yet to show any signs of wear despite the fact that I’ve carried it on a near-daily basis since it debuted in April 2022. The exterior fabric is also super easy to clean!" — Julia Marzovilla, E-Commerce Writer
Pros: Made from easy-to-clean vegan leather; Holds a 15" laptop; Comes in several colors.
Cons: Costs over $200, Is open at the top; Has one interior pocket.
Best Machine Washable Laptop Bag
"I've long been a devout fan of Rothy's flats, which are repurposed from plastic bottles but—somehow!—feel like clouds on your feet. A couple of years ago, they started making bags as well, and The Essential tote became a fast favorite. Like their shoes, Rothy's bags are machine-washable and crafted from marine plastic and thread made from plastic bottles, and this tote (which comes in colorways for every mood and season, to my bank account's horror) fits my 15-inch laptop, a book, an extra pair of flats, and then some." — Jenny Hollander, Director of Content Strategy
Pros: Is machine-washable; Is made from thread made from plastic bottles; Comes in several colors; Has a zip closure.
Cons: Costs over $200; has one interior pocket.
Details in Laptop Bags to Look For
“Thoughtful interior pockets are also important,” says Lei. “If you’re anything like me, I always wear my bag on the same shoulder (probably really bad) and have dedicated pockets for all of my items. It makes finding things on the go so easy, almost second nature. It’s basically muscle memory at this point!”
Advice For First-Time Buyers
“You can’t go wrong with something understated and timeless in a neutral color, made with quality materials,” says Lei. “Bonus if the materials are also low-maintenance (not too delicate, easy to clean, and scratch resistant).”