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The Best Men’s Leather Backpacks for Everyday Use

Best Leather Backpacks 0 Hero

Whether you’re a student, commuter, hiker, or jet-setter, there’s no better way to stow your belongings than in a handy backpack. That said, there’s nothing more luxurious to sling over your shoulders than a lavish bag made of leather. While many leather backpacks resemble one another at a glance, the intricate details and dedicated craftsmanship that put together some of the accessory world’s finest options make each one worthy of your consideration. However, as it applies to everything else, some of these choices stand head and shoulders above the rest. There’s a reason most brands separate their leather goods from their basic accessories, and it’s because leather often comes with a price — nevertheless, it’s typically worth it. We’ve narrowed down the best leather backpacks in our guide so you can add a bit of luxury to your carrying duties.

The Best Leather Backpacks

Why are leather backpacks good?

Much like other leather goods, it may cost more to buy and make leather backpacks compared to traditional options, but the end product is always worth it. The durability of leather alone makes a backpack more rugged and willing to stand up to everyday use, and a unique patina will develop over time that tells the story of your travels. On top of that, a leather backpack has a more interesting look in general, compared to the average fare, and makes for a meaningful heirloom that’s built to last, like an old leather jacket.

how to care for a leather backpack

For everyday care, using a dry cloth to get rid of gunk is advised, and if it gets wet you can do the same and let it air dry (you never want to apply heat to leather). If you need to spot clean, get a damp cloth and lightly rub the affected area (make sure not to rub for too long in one spot, as it can damage the leather). When you first get the backpack, and then at least once a year after, you’ll want to apply a leather conditioner to keep your backpack fresh and strong. While this isn’t essential to preserving the leather, and it depends on how frequently you’re using the pack,

what to look for

Leather: Keep in mind that leather is porous, so it can never be completely waterproof, but you can waterproof it yourself or go for an option that comes with treated leather. After that, the leather choice comes down to preference; you can go for full-grain to get the natural look, or faux leather if you’re trying to be sustainable.

Compartments: Backpacks come equipped with a wide variety of compartments and storage options, so it’s important to understand what your EDC consists of (and if you want any purpose-built compartments like a laptop holder).

Design: Where and how you’ll be using a leather backpack should determine the style and features that you need. For example, a backpack with a rolltop can be helpful for traveling as it offers more storage without adding much weight.

Capacity: Generally speaking, bags with a capacity of around 13-25L are ideal for commuting or campus, and backpacks with 25-35L of storage are recommended for travel. This is just a ballpark, and different people have different needs, so don’t take this as gospel.

Maverick & Co. Earthen Recycled Leather Backpack

  • Water-resistant finish
  • Gunmetal plating
  • Made entirely of recycled materials
  • On the small side

The Sustainable Pick: The Earthen Recycled Leather Backpack is as sustainable as it gets, seeing as its composition comes to shape via nothing but recycled material, as the brand’s abidance to give back to the planet is integral to its mission statement. This option boasts a recycled leather makeup and recycled nylon lining, the latter of which leads to a 16” laptop compartment, handy elastic organizer, and bolstered water resistance.

Leather: Recycled
Compartments: 16″ laptop compartment, elastic organizer, suitcase sleeve
Design: Commuting, small EDC
Capacity: 12.4L

Troubadour Slipstream Backpack

  • Lightweight and waterproof
  • Breathable back and ergonomic design
  • Padded shoulders
  • Laptop compartment zipper can be tight

The Comfiest Backpack: As one of the most ergonomically comfortable options you’ll find here, Troubadour knows how much of a hassle it can be to carry what feels like the world on your shoulders. Thanks to its breathable back panel and padded shouldered straps, this is as easy to throw on as a lightweight EDC bag. Plus, you can practically take it out in any weather, as it’s made from waterproof Italian vegetable-tanned leather, adding a touch of sumptuousness to your workday, plane ride, or lecture.

Leather: Italian vegetable-tanned leather
Compartments: 17″ laptop sleeve, multiple internal pockets
Design: Commuting, EDC, Campus
Capacity: 21L

Harber London Slim Laptop Backpack

  • Sleek and stylish
  • Great for organizing other (small) tech gear
  • Handmade in Spain
  • Can only fit one big item (laptop)

The Best Laptop Backpack: To shed some additional weight, Harber London delivers a perfect option tailored specifically toward laptops and tablets. The family-run artisan’s aptly-named Slim Laptop Backpack practically serves as a tech organizer, featuring a front pocket to hold your chargers and internal ones that can stow a 12.9” iPad Pro with a keyboard attached, going to show that it’s equally capable of holding on to a 13” MacBook Pro. Handmade in Spain from rich, full-grain cowhide leather, this choice is remarkably sleek and is rounded out with a pair of comfortable straps.

Leather: Full-grain
Compartments: 13″-16″ main compartment, inside pockets for 12.9″ iPad pro (and other tablets)
Design: Laptop
Capacity: 5L

Welsh Mountain Rolltop

  • Handmade in the USA
  • Adjustable strap
  • Great for travel
  • N/A

The Best Backpack for Travel: Welsh claims that its handsome Rolltop Pack is geared toward adventurers, and when you take a look at its bevy of features, we can’t deny that. However, with its 15” interior laptop sleeve and cell phone pocket, it’s safe to say that this handsome leather backpack is also perfect for your average traveler. This durable bag measures 28.5” tall, 13.5” wide, and comes equipped with a pair of adjustable straps

Leather: Full-grain
Compartments: 15″ laptop sleeve, 5″ cell phone pocket
Design: Travel, Outdoors
Measurements: 19″-28.5” tall, 13.5″ wide, 4” deep

Satchel & Page Leather Backpack

  • Antique brass hardware
  • Tobacco suede lining
  • Plenty of storage
  • Can be big on some

The Best Classic Backpack: Satchel & Page’s rudimentarily-named pack serves as a top-notch showcase of form and function. Aimed toward travelers, this Tuscan leather-crafted option is vegetable-tanned and aniline-dyed to provide a gorgeous sheen. It also features chic antique brass hardware and a smooth tobacco suede lining. As far as its carrying attributes are concerned, the bag offers a pair of padded laptop compartments that can hold the latest 16” MacBook Pro, as well as an additional tablet sleeve. These are accompanied by an interior zipped pocket, two additional open pockets, and an exterior zipped pocket for easy access to your phone, passport, or charger.

Leather: Italian vegetable-tanned leather
Compartments: 16″ laptop pocket, 12.9″ tablet pocket, interior zipped pocket
Design: Travel, Campus, Commuting
Dimensions: 17″ tall, 12″ wide, 4.5″ deep

Tanner Goods Holton Leather Backpack

  • Aircraft-grade aluminum hardware
  • Rugged construction
  • Slim profile
  • A bit small for long trips

The Best Backpack for Commuting: The leather expert in Tanner Goods touts its Holton Leather Pack as a “solution for modern Hemingways,” as the brand claims that it can’t help but wonder what the famed author used to carry around over the course of his extensive travels. While it’s hard to imagine that he would’ve needed to use an interior laptop sleeve, it’s easy to assume that The Sun Also Rises author would have appreciated the Holton’s rugged makeup, right down to its aircraft-grade aluminum hardware that’s built to take on nearly anything.

Leather: Genuine leather
Compartments: 15″ laptop sleeve
Design: EDC, Commuting
Capacity: 12.5L

Hardgraft Well-Rounded Backpack

  • Water-repellent finish
  • Made in Italy
  • Minimalist design
  • Some may prefer an internal laptop compartment

The Best Italian-Made Backpack: The blacked-out Well-Rounded Backpack features discreet, hidden zippers to not distract from its gorgeous exterior made up of a combination of vegetable-tanned Italian leather and water-repellent Italian-coated canvas. Measuring just over a foot high, its low-key composition aims to provide you with a simpler option to carry all your gear. However, don’t think its subtle design translates to a lack of features, as this Italian-made option comes equipped with an exterior zipped laptop pocket that you can barely catch with the naked eye.

Leather: Italian vegetable-tanned leather
Compartments: Outside zipped laptop pocket, two internal pockets
Design: Campus, commuting, EDC
Dimensions: 12.2″ tall x 17.7″ wide x 6.7” deep

KILLSPENCER Utility Backpack

  • 4,000 lb test Mil-Spec webbing
  • Fire resistant and waterproof lining
  • Water-resistant zippers
  • Can add a monogram
  • N/A

The Best USA-Made Backpack: KILLSPENCER’s extensive catalog of carry-ons and folios is based on a meticulous makeup that seeps over to the entirety of its accessories, which is why we had to give the Utility Backpack the recognition it deserves. The full-grain leather backpack is rounded out with Bullhide leather accents, including its handle and front flap. For added elemental protection, it features a pair of Riri Aquazip water-resistant zippers, as well as a fire-retardant and waterproof nylon lining — how’s that for keeping your gear in good hands?

Leather: Full-grain
Compartments: 16″ foam and nylon padded/lined exterior laptop compartment
Design: EDC, campus, commuting
Capacity: 21.3L

Shinola The Runwell Backpack

  • Nickel hardware
  • Padded shoulders
  • Super soft
  • Can’t change zipper color to match other leather options

The Best Backpack for Campus: Surely, you’re familiar with Shinola’s sprawling collection of timepieces, but its leather goods are arguably even more noteworthy. The Detroit-bred label’s flagship Runwell is as casual as it is smooth, crafted from natural grain leather, and finished off with nickel hardware for some added shine. The natural variation is bound to patina as time goes on, meaning this backpack will just get better with age. Equipped with a pair of slip pockets and a surfeit of pen pockets, this is perfect for heading back to the office.

Leather: Natural grain
Compartments: 15″ laptop pocket, pen pockets
Design: Commuting, small EDC, campus
Capacity: 17L

Lotuff Leather Zipper Backpack

  • Option to add a monogram
  • Handmade in New England
  • Brass YKK-Excella zippers
  • Made to order, so it can take some time to arrive

The Best Color Options: Lotuff’s gorgeous Leather Zipper Backpack is made to order and may take as long as nine weeks to hit your doorstep — be that as it may, it’s entirely worth it. The handmade bag is built to last for years thanks to its sturdy, tumbled leather composition, and even comes available in a variety of vibrant shades, including lush Cordovan and a more lighthearted Green.

Leather: Tumbled and vegetable-tanned leather
Compartments: 9″ interior pocket, 12″ exterior pocket
Design: Campus, commuting
Dimensions: 17″ tall x 13″ wide x 4.5″ deep

Ghurka Blazer No. 278

  • Cotton twill interior
  • Unique number for each bag
  • Can add a monogram and brass tag
  • Great heirloom
  • Pricey

The Premium Pick: If you’re aiming for sheer decadence, then the elite artisans at Ghurka are here to deliver. The traditionally-designed Blazer No. 278 features a pair of roomy exterior pockets that are rounded out with the brand’s signature tab closures, keeping your phone and accessories safe and sound. Standing 12.5” high at first glance, this option is much more than meets the eye, offering enough interior space to hold a laptop as big as 15” across. If you’re looking to set yourself apart from the rest, any of the four colors offered here make for a trail-blazing choice.

Compartments: 15″ laptop sleeve, 9″ interior pocket, two exterior pockets
Design: EDC, campus, commuting, travel
Dimensions: 15″ tall x 12″ wide x 6.25″ deep

The Best Men’s Backpacks for EDC Right Now

Best EDC Backpacks 00 Hero

If you’re aiming for a less opulent option, then we’ve got you covered. Our broader guide to the best everyday carry backpacks offers options that will help you keep all your gear in order.