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Just like you don't need to spend a ton on your outfit for it to look expensive, you don't necessarily need to be carrying a real leather bag for it to look luxurious, especially when there are so many vegan alternatives that look just as elevated as the real thing. Some people might turn to faux-leather options to shop on a budget, while others have ethical or environmental concerns with real leather. But regardless of the motivation, there's no denying that shoppers are more curious than ever about vegan leather.
Last year, Lyst reported that interest in "vegan leather" had spiked, as searches for the term had increased 69% from the previous year. In its annual Conscious Fashion Report, Lyst further explained that the term now garners an average of 33,100 online searches monthly. With statistics like that, there's no denying it: Faux leather is happening.
Seeing as it's our duty to bring you the best shopping guides, we started making our own edit of the best vegan handbag brands on the market. Whether you're looking to add a new carryall to your collection or are simply curious to see how these vegan bags compare (hint: they're really chic), keep reading to discover the ten brands that we have to thank for making faux leather look so good.
Known for outfitting cool girls everywhere in its signature laid-back but playful aesthetic, Simon Miller is a major source for some of the coolest vegan-leather handbags out there. Look here for shapes that feel forward, like its Puffin and Bend bags, and a range of fun, anti-boring colors.
Simon Miller Mini Puffin Bag ($174)
Simon Miller Tiki Woven Faux Leather Tote ($450)
Simon Miller Mini Bend Leather Shoulder Bag ($390)
One compelling reason to turn to a vegan-leather bag is the attractive price point. JW Pei is a name to know in this space—not just because its price tags look like they're missing a zero at the end but also because the colors, shapes, and trends the brand hits on have fashion insiders reaching for its pieces over designer labels (yes, really).
JW Pei Maze Bag in White & Dark Gray ($89)
JW Pei Gabbi Bag in Pink ($79)
JW Pei Croissant Top Handle Bag in White ($76)
No conversation about vegan fashion is complete without a mention of Stella McCartney. The iconic London brand was a sustainability leader way before it was top of mind for the rest of the industry, and because of that, its vegan-leather accessories, especially the bags, are impeccably designed.
Stella McCartney Small Vegetarian Leather Shoulder Bag ($935)
Stella McCartney Chain Medium Vegetarian Leather Shoulder Bag ($1370)
Stella McCartney Perforated Faux Leather Tote ($920)
Another key name in the vegan-leather space is Nanushka. You probably know the brand for its sumptuous knits or faux-leather separates, which are its signatures, but did you know that its bags are also made from leather alternatives? Thanks to the premium design elements and buttery-soft feel, you'd never know.
Nanushka Anja Baguette Bag ($445)
Nanushka Noya Mini Bag ($745)
Nanushka Trapeze Bag ($465)
Who What Wear
Sure, I may be biased here, but the vegan leather bags from our namesake line have so many finishes that make them look really elevated in person, whether it be a croc-embossed finish, architectural shape, or fun scrunched detail like the handle on this little $85 tote.
Who What Wear Kory Faux Leather Tote ($100)
Who What Wear Terrie Faux Leather Shoulder Bag ($85)
Who What Wear Selene Faux Leather Shoulder Bag ($70)
Although Senreve's offering does include traditional leather bags, its vegan lineup of structured totes and bucket bags that mirror the design and finish of the main line impresses us. We especially love how realistic the brand's croc-effect bags look.
Senreve Fiore Bucket Bag ($825)
Senreve Armonica Tote ($995)
Senreve Vegan Mini Maestra ($695)
House of Want
There's definitely a misconception that vegan-leather goods only come in boring earth tones and yawn-inducing styles, but House of Want is banishing that narrative. The line of wallet-friendly bags couldn't be any more trendy or statement-making with its unique elements like resin chain links.
House of Want How We Fashion Shoulder Bag ($98)
House of Want How We Stand Out Tote ($98)
House of Want We Are Modern Vegan Leather Bucket Bag ($98)
Street Level is a label that was unknown to me until the croissant-inspired baguette bag below jumped out at me as I was scrolling through Nordstrom's new arrivals. It turns out that each of the brand's functional but stylish bags is crafted from faux leather that you'd never guess rings up for under $50.
Street Level Gathered Faux Leather Baguette Bag ($41)
Street Level Croc Embossed Faux Leather Bucket Bag & Removable Pouch ($49)
Street Level Reversible Faux Leather Tote & Wristlet ($49)
Matt & Nat
If you're already familiar with shopping for vegan leather, you likely already know Matt & Nat. The brand has made a name for itself with sleek, timeless staples made from faux leather.
Matt & Nat Rith Vintage Collection Faux Leather Saddle Bag ($140)
Matt & Nat Canci Faux Leather Tote ($170)
Matt & Nat Met Vegan Leather Crossbody Wallet ($95)
Mali + Lili
Another wallet-friendly label we'd recommend is Mali + Lili, whose roomy tote bags will carry you from work to the weekend.
Mali + Lili Ray Reversible & Convertible Woven Vegan Leather Tote ($74)
Mali + Lili Reversible Vegan Leather Tote ($78)
Mali + Lili Nicky North/South Vegan Leather Tote ($72)
This article originally appeared on Who What Wear
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