The 12 Best Laptop Backpacks for Women in 2022

 selection of laptop backpacks
selection of laptop backpacks

If you’ve recently started commuting to the office again, you know how important it is to find one of the best laptop backpacks to bring with you. While, yes, a regular cotton tote bag would probably cut it, there’s nothing worse than losing your keys, wallet, or your daily planner at the very bottom of your bag. Not to mention, having a secure, zipped-up spot for your laptop or work phone is a game-changer. So Marie Claire chatted with the experts—a.k.a. women who love having a laptop bag for work and know a thing or two about what to look for—about the very best work backpacks that hold your laptop.

A step up from even the very best work bag, the laptop backpacks on this list make light work of carrying all of your essentials—be it a bevy of charging cables, a water bottle, or a change of gym clothes. And while all of the backpacks on this list are designed with function in mind, many of them are just plain stylish, too. Some are made from leather for a sleek, on-trend look, while others are made from water-resistant nylon or canvas. Ahead, we asked Cuyana co-founder Shilpa Shah and Bellroy's Co-Founder and COO Lina Calabria for their picks, in addition to rounding up a few of the laptop backpacks that keep the team at Marie Claire going from brands like Calpak, Longchamp, Herschel, and more.

What to Look For in the Best Laptop Backpack

Say no to compartment-less backpacks in 2022! Laptop backpacks are there to ultimately make your life easier, so look for ones that come with lots of nifty design details. Your commute will at least feel seamless if you don’t need to reach into your bag’s largest compartment to pull out one of your essentials every time you want to change a song or put your book away.

"When shopping for a laptop backpack, organization is key!” says Shah. “I always look for thoughtful design details like interior pockets and built-in laptop sleeves to keep your essentials in place.”

Tote Bags vs. Work Backpacks

While some prefer to carry a laptop tote bag, having a laptop backpack means that your commute will be hands-free, not to mention the security of zippers, the usefulness of pockets, and, oftentimes, more space for your belongings. However, the best laptop backpack "is the one that helps you both at work but also at the activities you do on either side of your work day, including your commute," says Calabria. "Right now I’m using a work backpack because I want to have my hands free on my way in."

Still, the key to real versatility is having a few on hand that you can use as your needs evolve and change. "I like to have different work bag options and then I choose the bag that suits what I need to get done on the day," Calabria says. "By using a couple of pouches, switching bags on a day-to-day basis can become pretty quick and easy."

Shop The Best Laptop Backpacks

Everlane The ReNew Transit Backpack

If you’re after a roomy bag with lots of compartments that isn't bulky, look no further than this one from sustainable brand Everlane. Not only does this style have a super spacious interior, but the exterior of this well-reviewed bag offers two sizable front zip pockets that you can tuck several items in for easy access. It comes in several wearable colors like black, this sleek grayish white, and a fresh minty green. And get this: it has two compartments for water bottles.

Pros: Holds a 15" laptop; Costs less than $200; Has two water bottle containers; An interior zip pocket for security; Several exterior pockets for easy access

Cons: Can look bulky when full

Calpak Kaya Laptop Backpack

If you need a no-fuss backpack that won't look super out-of-place at your next happy hour sesh with your colleagues, this one from Calpak is a must-buy. The simple square silhouette and black detailing makes it look so timeless.It comes in tons of colors like pale pink, lavender, and black. With a dedicated laptop zippered compartment at the back, it’s sleek in design and won’t weigh you down. Plus, it comes complete with several interior compartments to keep you organized while you’re on the go.

Pros: Costs under $200; Comes in several colors; Has a dedicated laptop sleeve; Has multiple interior pockets; Fits over a suitcase.

Cons: Heavier than similar backpacks at 3lbs; Some reviewers said it looked bulky.

Herschel Little America Laptop Backpack

"This is my go-to backpack for extended trips or long subway rides where I can't be bothered to carry a regular bag. The interior laptop pocket is large enough to fit my 14-inch computer while also having a padded cushion that keeps my very expensive piece of tech safe. Mary Poppins and I have one thing and common, and that is carrying a bag that seems endless with the most random things in it. I usually carry a lot with me and this bag from Hershel is large enough to carry what I need with a chic exterior that doesn't clash with what I'm wearing—yes that's important." — Alexis Gaskin, Freelance Beauty Writer

Pros: Costs under $200; Fits up to a 15" laptop; Has padded shoulder straps; Has multiple interior pockets; Has a drawstring and leather straps closure; Top-Rated on Amazon.

Cons: Doesn't have a dedicated waterbottle compartment; Not waterproof.

AWAY The Front Pocket Backpack

This sleek laptop backpack from universally adored luggage brand AWAY was designed for hands-free travel. It's made from a water-resistant nylon fabric, comes in tons of colors, contains three main compartments, and can hold up to a 15" computer. If you have a suitcase from AWAY, this backpack comes with a trolley sleeve that attaches to all of the brand's wheeled options, so you can look totally uniform while in the airport. However, it doesn’t have a dedicated compartment for a water bottle.

Pros: Water-resistant; Costs less than $200; Comes in several colors; Has a dedicated laptop pocket; Can fit a 15" laptop; Can fit onto a suitcase; Has several interior pocket.

Cons: No dedicated water bottle pocket.

Madewell The Lorimer Backpack

If you're looking for an option that won't cost you a fortune, looks luxe, and works for everyday use, consider this 100% leather laptop backpack from fan-favoritte brand Madewell. The buttery soft leather will wear with time, giving it the perfect lived-in feel. Plus, it’s packed with tiny design details that make it great for gifting (read: it’s monogrammable!). It doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of other laptop backpacks on this list, but it gets the job done.

Pros: Comes in two colors; Is monogrammable;

Cons: Costs over $200; Users say the zipper breaks easily.

Dagne Dover Dakota Neoprene Backpack in Medium

"I own the medium Dagne Dover Dakota Neoprene backpack in Dune, as well as the small and large limited edition Dusky Blue. I also own a large Indi Diaper Backpack in Storm Blue. I've built a collection of these Dagne Dover bags since 2019 because the neoprene is so light and soft. The main compartment is roomy enough for gym shoes and clothes, planner books, a makeup bag, as well as an exterior side pocket that can accommodate a thin water bottle (it's Larq compatible!). Also, the interior features a laptop sleeve with an elastic enclosure to keep your laptop or tablet in place—safe and separate from your other belongings. The adjustable straps are also made of neoprene so it's easy on the shoulders during your commute. The bags are water resistant, but not stain resistant. However I throw mine in the wash under delicates and lay flat to dry and it looks brand new again." — Tanya Benedicto Klich, Senior Editor

Pros: Costs under $200; Comes in multple colors; Has an interior laptop sleeve; Has adjustable shoulder straps; Is water-resistant; Machine-washable; Comes in three sizes; Top-rated; Fits over a suitcase handle.

Cons: Not stain resistant

Cuyana Leather Backpack

Shah says that Cuyana’s Leather Backpack has been her “go-to for years,” and it’s not hard to see why. Available in two sizes—13 and 16 inches, respectively—this work bag comes with a laptop sleeve built-in alongside a larger slip pocket on the inside. “This bag was truly designed with comfort in mind, with wider back straps and adjustable notches to help you carry your necessities with ease,” she says. You can shop it in multiple colors if this clay color is too hard for you to keep clean.


Pros: Comes in several colors; Comes in two sizes (13" and 16"); Fits a 16" laptop; Sustainably-made; Has a dedicated latop sleeve inside; Has two interior pockets.
Cons: Costs over $200;

MZ Wallace Metro Backpack

This plush, quilted nylon backpack from MZ Wallace is polished, sophisticated, and versatile for day or night use. The backpack has tons of smart features that make it well worth the investment: it comes with a removable pouch for smaller essentials and two interior cell phone pockets—one for your work phone and one for your personal—and has padded shoulder straps for all-day comfort. Plus, you can pick from either black or navy blue and it holds most 15” laptops inside.


Pros: Fits most 15" laptops; Has a dedicated laptop compartment; Has padded straps; Has a removable pouch .

Cons: Costs over $200.

Senreve Maestra Bag

If you have a 13" computer, this stylish (and convertible!) option from Senreve is for you. It works as a tote or a backpack thanks to its four-way wearability, and looks stylish every which way you wear it. The stain-resistant texture also means that it will be super durable for years of constant use. However, it only has one exterior pocket and one interior pocket, so it’s best if you’re someone who travels light or has all of their essentials at the office already.

Pros: Comes in several colors; Can be worn four ways; Water-resistant; Fits up to a 15" laptop; Has a dedicated laptop compartment

Cons: Costs more than $200; The dedicated laptop compartment only fits an 11" or 13" laptop; Only has one interior pocket and one exterior pocket.

Longchamp Le Pliage Club Nylon Backpack

"I'm a Le Pliage girl through and through, faithfully replacing mine every couple of years, but recently I've had my eye on the Le Pliage Club. The collector's version of Le Pliage—and I am nothing if not a Le Pliage collector—is the same size, but features a few updated details (colored buttons! Logo embroidery!). It'll fit a small 11-inch laptop." — Jenny Hollander, Director of Content Strategy

Pros: Costs under $200; Comes in several colors; Zip-top and latch-style closure; Can be folded up; Has water-resistant lining; Made from easy-to-clean nylon.

Cons: Doesn't fit laptops bigger than 11".

Bellroy Tokyo Totepack

"The Tokyo Tote Compact is perfect for carrying a few things with really quick access in a tote format where you don’t have to compromise on organization," says Calabria about this sporty backpack. It’s available to shop in six shades including red, green, and black, and has plenty of design details that prove it's worth the price tag: padded shoulder straps, vertical front pockets for easy access to all of your essentials—plus, it's made from water-resistant nylon for all-season travel.

Pros: Has padded shoulder straps; Made from water-resistant nylon; Fits most 15" laptops; Backed by three-year warranty; Costs less than $200; Has interior pop-pockets for water bottle storage.

Cons: Has a bulky silhouette.

Paravel Fold-Up Backpack

Made from 15 recycled plastic water bottles, this backpack from travel brand Paravel can be folded flat and zipped into a small pouch when it’s not in use, making it great if you’re someone who travels frequently. I would also recommend keeping it in your work bag if you’re the kind of person who hits the gym after or before a day in the office. That said, when it’s go-time, the backpack easily expands, and it’ll hold your must-have items and up to a 15-inch laptop. Plus, you can personalize it with your monogram for a custom look.

Pros: Sustainably-made; Costs less than $200; Comes in several colors; Folds up to fit into your other bag; Lightweight; Fits up to a 15" laptop; Can fit a change of clothes.

Cons: Doesn't keep its shape.

Meet The Experts

Shilpa Shah
Shilpa Shah

Shilpa Shah

Co-Founder and CXO of Cuyana

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.

Lina Calabria
Lina Calabria

Lina Calabria

Co-Founder and COO of Bellroy

Lina Calabria, Co-Founder and COO of Bellroy, is an engineer and business leader with a focus on shared learning and development, considering alternative perspectives, and applying care and attention to all facets of the company. Throughout Bellroy’s growth, Lina has also served as CFO and Chief Sales and Marketing Officer. Prior to Bellroy, Lina worked as a management consultant with clients such as Australia Post, Royal Mail, and Pfizer

laptop bags
laptop bags

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