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, 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!”
What to Look For In a 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.”
How We Chose the Best Laptop Bags
There are plenty of laptop bags available to choose from, and it’s my job as Marie Claire’s E-Commerce Editor to discern which ones are worth the splurge. A few key factors that all of the options on this list share:
- Internal pockets: Odds are, you don’t want to rifle through your entire bag to find your laptop charger when your computer is about to die. That’s why the bags on this list all feature some type of internal pocket. In some cases, that means that you’ll find a laptop-sized sleeve on the inside; in others, you’ll find a mini pocket for your wallet or keys. Plus, many of them have a secure fastening at the top, be it a zipper, a magnet, or a button flap.
- Versatile: Laptop bags have to strike the balance between being functional and looking cool enough to work with every stage of your day. The laptop bags on this list all come in neutral colors and have a sleek profile, so they won’t stick out from the rest of your outfit.
- Comfort: If you’ve ever carried a shoulder bag and felt it physically ache, you know the importance of finding a well-constructed and comfortable option. Some of the laptop bags on this list have specifically designed padded straps, but they’re all made with thick, durable ones that won’t break or dig into your shoulder or arm. They're also lightweight by design, so you won’t have to worry about adding your heavy laptop into an already-heavy bag.
- High-quality materials: We want you to love the bag you choose, and to love it for a long time. The options below are made from durable, high-quality materials like nylon and leather so that they'll last years in your collection.
Deals on Laptop Bags
Lubardy 15.6 inch Laptop Tote Bag,
$36 $30 at Amazon
"This tote is my holy grail work bag," says Editorial Fellow Brooke Knappenberger. The under-$50 bag is on sale currently for $30.
- Best Affordable Laptop Bag for Women: Lubardy 15.6 inch Laptop Tote Bag
- Best Laptop Bag For Women with the Largest Color Selection: Rothy's The Essential Tote
- Best Durable Laptop Bag For Women: Cuyana Classic Easy Tote
- Best Customizable Laptop Bag For Women: Cuyana System Tote
- Laptop Bag With The Best Closure For Women: Longchamp Large Le Pliage Tote
The Best Laptop Bags
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.
Customer Review: "It’s much more spacious than it looks. It’s very sleek and stylish. I use it as my work bag and I find that it looks professional and has enough space for all of my stuff. I carry a laptop, pencil case, two books, makeup bag, water bottle, wallet, lotion, phone and laptop charger, and other small miscellaneous objects. Still plenty of space. And when you see carry it, it doesn’t feel bulky or cumbersome. The bag does sag a bit after use. But has held up to wear and tear. I would recommend." — Amazon
Best Faux-Leather Laptop Bag
"For far, far too long, I relied on an old canvas tote to carry all my belongings. Blame it on my obsession with emulating a farmer's market-frequenting It girl, but that ragged bag was my go-to—to the point where it became threadbare and no longer could keep my essentials safe. With no choice but to upgrade, I searched for a replacement, and that's when I found Calpak's Haven Laptop Bag. Made of durable faux leather, it's infinitely more sturdy than a measly canvas tote. It boasts multiple interior compartments and, best of all, features a removable laptop sleeve that can fit up to a 16-inch device. In short, this bag has changed my life, and I can't recommend it any more." — Emma Childs, Style Editor
Pros: Costs less than $200; Made of faux leather; Fits a 16" device; Comes in multiple colors;
Cons: Some reviewers say the strap comes loose.
Customer Review: "This bag is amazing! Great construction, easy to use, I love that the insert can come out, and it fits everything I need for work without being too bulky or too much like a utility bag." — Calpak
Best Leather Laptop Bag
"This is truly 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.
Customer Review: "I'd been pining after this back for a long time now. A friend had one in the brown color that I'd been eyeing for a while. I started a new job at the start of the year, and decided I'd break down and treat myself to a new bag for work. The bag is durable, spacious (fits my 14 inch laptop, folders, notebook, pens, etc) very comfortably. I decided to get the black bag with brown straps. Figured that way it'd literally go with any outfit. In addition to being practical, it is also so pretty, really soft leather, stylish shape. Would definitely recommend this bag to anyone!" — Madewell
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.
Customer Review: None available.
Best Laptop Bag for Post-Grads
"My personal favorite, which is also perfect for a “first timer,” is our Cuyana System Tote, created with a 3-in-1 approach in mind. The System Laptop Sleeve and System Flap Bag 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.
Customer Review: None available.
Best Canvas Laptop Bag
“I have been carrying Longchamp’s Le Pliage tote on and off since I was in high school. It was the first bag I ever invested in (I bought the olive color) and it’s the only bag I goto time and time again when I need something to hold my computer. There are a few sizes to choose from but I prefer the large option because it holds my computer, my makeup bag, a book or two, plus whatever else I have rolling around on my day-to-day commute. The small interior pocket on the side is great for keeping my card holder and phone handy, and the leather straps have never failed med over the decade of near constant wear and tear.” — Julia Marzovilla, E-Commerce Editor
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.
Customer Review: "Why is this the perfect work bag? 1. It’s lightweight 2. It’s durable 3. It’s classic and professional in its style 4. It’s not too flashy, it’s subtle enough for work 5. It’s not too expensive, again it’s subtle enough for work 6. It doesn’t look cheap 7. It fits a 13 inch laptop 8. It fits my 40 ounce water bottle 9. It is easy to clean 10. It is durable in the rain 11. It’s subtle luxury and great for day to day life 12. It folds up, making it a great bag for travel I love it. I want to get a backup and another color." — Nordstrom
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 thanks to the fact that it has its very own zipper across the top. "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.
Customer Review: "Such a great quality leather purse! The leather is super thick and durable. I chose the 'English Saddle' color and I can tell it will be a staple in my wardrobe. This is a great bag for on the go, shopping, work, etc. It's even large enough to carry a smaller laptop inside! I have already gotten so many complements on it, and the monogram adds a really nice personal touch. Love it!" — Madewell
Best Neoprene Laptop Bag
If you need a backpack, we recommend this one from Dagne Dover. "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 and 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
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 water bottle.
Cons: Costs $200.
Customer Review: "I had no idea when I ordered this that all my backpack dreams would be fulfilled! There are so many hidden pockets (with zippers!) that I always have a place for everything. I bring it everywhere and it is comfortable and chic and I always have everything I need and it’s all very accessible." — Dagne Dover
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.
Customer Review: None available.
Best Slouchy 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.
Customer Review: "Absolutely stunning bag!! I am tote lover and actually have too many totes. This has the same interior feel of a tote while having the look of a hobo. The leather is luxurious, interior side pockets are just the world and stops this from feeling like just a bucket. Caramello color is so boho and warm, I couldn’t be happier with this bag!!" — Rebecca Minkoff
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, whatever book I’m reading, and all the beauty products I’m currently testing. It’s also great for travel—I can throw in two days worth of clothing and a chic heel and I'm ready for the airport." — 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
Customer Review: "Great bag. It’s lightweight and has pockets galore. Loved all the slip pockets and zippered pockets. The crossbody strap came in handy during a trip. The handles are long enough, padded and very comfortable. Really convenient when traveling and looks chic enough for work or fun. It’s a keeper!" — Nordstrom
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.
Best Luxury Designer Laptop Bag
"I have an unhealthy obsession with handbags. I like to collect them, stare at them, wear them. But finding a tote that fit my laptop and went with every outfit, regardless of the season, was a tricky feat. I measured my computer and scoured the internet for options. I finally landed on this Louis Vuitton tote, which remains the best investment I've ever made. It holds everything. My laptop, my computer charger, my wallet, 90,000 miscellaneous lipsticks—you get the point. I've worn on repeat for three years now and it looks almost as good as new...and I'm not very gentle with my bags. I remain as obsessed with it as the day I bought it." — Samantha Holender, Beauty Editor
Best Leather Laptop Bag
This simple tote from Coach comes in five colors including this black, a bright red, a forest green, and more. You can also shop it in two fabrications—this scuff-roof pebbled leather and a sturdy canvas—and you can add a monogram design to the front for free. The spacious interior has one zip compartment for your laptop, and can hold a 13” device with, as one five-star reviewer put it, “room to spare.” It even has little feet along the bottom to keep it intact and in its best condition.
Pros: Comes in two colors; Customizable; Made from pebbled leather; Has a center zipped compartment; Has protective feet at the base.
Cons: Won’t hold 15” laptops; Doesn’t have a zipper top.
Customer Review: “I bought this bag so it could hold my 13" laptop with room to spare! I can fit my laptop, charging cable and mouse along with my wallet, AirPods, and anything else I chose to add to the convenient middle zipper pocket. I also love that each side of the purse had a closure point at the top. One side is a magnetic closure and the other is a turn lock. Another great thing about this purse is that it stands upright without slouching over like other large bags and has little feet on the bottom to help keep everything upright. It's the best purse I've bought for work!” — Coach
Best Slim Laptop Bag
This chic laptop bag from Kate Spade is made from a scratch and scuff-proof pebbled leather, making it a great durable option for those who spend a lot of time on their morning and evening commutes. Two interior slip compartments allow you to organize your essentials and keep any other tech you carry with you safe as you go. Plus, it has a sturdy top handle and an additional (and removable!) crossbody strap for a customizable look. You can shop it in two neutral colors—this easy black and a pale pink.
Pros: Made from pebbled leather; Has a zip closure; Has two interior slip compartments; fits up to a 15” laptop; Has a crossbody strap; Comes in two colors.
Cons: Won’t fit a larger laptop than 15”.
Customer Review: “I was looking for a professional laptop bag that doubles as a purse so that I wouldn't have to cart so much baggage. This tote was perfect. It's spacious, has multiple compartments, and storage spaces. It all closes tightly so perfect for airport runs. Overall love the bag. I want the brown color now as well.” — Kate Spade
Best Laptop Bag Brands
Shopping for a laptop bag isn’t like shopping for any other tote bag in your collection. As with everything else in your wardrobe, there are a few brands that do the best job at making laptop bags.
- Cuyana: It’s safe to say that team Marie Claire is obsessed with laptop bags from Cuyana. Not only are they featured twice on this list, but the entirety of their collection is great for women who love sleek, pared-down, and sustainable options.
- Kate Spade New York: An iconic brand in the world of timeless bags, Kate Spade makes impeccably designed and thoughtfully-constructed laptop bags for the modern woman. The Kate Spade New York option on this list (spoiler alert!) features not one but two interior compartments, comes in two neutral colors, and is literally named the “Commuter” bag.
- Coach: Coach, the brand behind the viral range of Tabby shoulder bags, also knows how to make a great laptop bag. The top-rated Willow bag (which is included on this list) is created to keep and store all of your essentials in place as you move throughout your day.
- Louis Vuitton: If you’re looking to invest in a new designer laptop bag, consider one from Louis Vuitton. From the iconic Neverfull to more subdued styles, Louis Vuitton is a classic favorite. The one on this list is adored by our Beauty Editor Samantha Holender, who calls it "the best investment I've ever made."
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).”
Meet the Experts
Jenny Lei is the founder and designer of Freja New York. After taking a detour from her original plans to pursue UX design, she decided to take a chance on herself and launch Freja to create functional foundation pieces for people to support their big life moments—something made ethically and responsibly with a story behind it. Functional, but still elegant. Jenny holds a Bachelors and Masters from Cornell University and currently resides in New York City where she has personally shipped every Freja package to date, adding a personal touch to every order.
Shilpa was drawn to Cuyana for the opportunity to enhance women’s lives by creating high quality products that were produced responsibly, priced accessibly, and that carried a story and a soul that could be delivered through human connection.
Beginning her career in Interaction Design, Shilpa has over 20 years of designing customer experiences, designing web and mobile interfaces for Fortune 500 companies such as Disney and AT&T. Before starting Cuyana, Shilpa added business expertise to her design and technical background by completing her MBA at the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business. Today Shilpa leads the company as its CXO, the Chief Experience Officer, crafting a branded omni-channel journey across digital and physical touchpoints.
Julia Marzovilla is the E-Commerce Editor at Marie Claire, where she covers everything from the latest beauty and fashion launches and sales to celebrity outfits and news. She also creates shopping guides that span every vertical on the site. Prior to joining the Marie Claire team, she contributed similar shopping stories to sites such as Bustle, InStyle, The Zoe Report, Who What Wear, and STYLECASTER. In her spare time, Julia can be found creating shopping guides for all of her friends, spending too much money on yet another pair of black boots, and cooking in her far-too-small kitchen.
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