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The best work bags and totes should always meet two criteria: function and style. When searching for your own, ask yourself, is it durable? Will it be sizable enough to fit all of your essentials—laptop, notebooks, planners, wallet, keys, and beauty staples? Is it lightweight and comfortable enough to wear over your shoulders, especially during a daily commute? I’ve learned the hard way—purchasing work bags that are too heavy to start with, and after I’ve filled them up, they’re almost too cumbersome to lug around.
Consider investing in a timeless work bag that will stay with you for years to come. Chloé’s Edith bag, with its top-stitched details, has a vintage-meets-modern feel and was recently reissued after its 2006 debut. Or consider Saint Laurent’s crisp Manhattan bag, which is tailored enough to go with you from high-powered meetings in the morning to drinks at night.
One of the joys of getting dressed up, for me, has always meant accessories—and that includes the work bag. The best totes pair seamlessly with your work attire, an A-line midi dress and boots, or a classic button-up shirt and sleek trouser pairing. Pick the right look, and you’re ready to take on the day. Below, shop the best work bags for women to carry all of your essentials, no matter where you’re headed.
The Investment Buy
If you prefer a one-and-done type work bag, consider investing in a timeless style you’ll use for years to come.
The Standout Statement
For anyone who prefers a bag that’s punchier than the typical tote, these designs by Hereu and Atluzarra will surely get you stopped on the street and asked, “Where is that bag from?”
The Minimalist Classic
The Traditional Canvas
Searching for a lightweight but durable work bag? Consider a canvas tote. It is a timeless staple for a reason.
The Boxy Carryall
A structured and vertically-shaped tote is perfect for carrying laptops and notebooks.
If you’re looking for a bag outside the expected neutral color palette and structure, these check-print market-style totes will bring a bit more flair to the work grind.
The Touch of Raffia
A beachy style raffia tote will put you in the summer mood, even when you’re not at the beach.