Confused between a crossbody and a satchel, or a tote and a hobo? We got you!
Purse purists believe that a bag can make or break any outfit. But we'd like to think otherwise. After all, this kind of mentality takes away all the fun and joy in experimenting with different types of purses!
Rather, we'd like to think of handbags as a personal statement--whether it be a reflection of one's current mood, or an act of defiance against the supposed "established" rules of fashion.
So we are diving into the list of different handbags with this mindset in mind; that choosing the right handbag is not about conformity, but about personal expression. Which of these various sizes and form factors resonate with you the most?
As the name implies, a shoulder bag is any purse that has a strap attached to it long enough to be worn over the shoulder. Shoulder bags are for people who want a more hands-free experience, and the straps can be wide, thin, or made with any material. As long as there is a strap, then it's considered a shoulder bag.
Totes are often associated with shopping bags. But at its core, a tote is a bag that is typically larger in size, and has two parallel handles that can fit over your shoulder. They are usually unfastened on top but having buttons or zippers are becoming a norm too. Though usually made with canvas or jute materials, tote bags can also be made of leather. The bottomline is that the bag material needs to be sturdy enough to hold a lot of stuff with ease and security.
This type of bag is named as such because of its light, unstructured nature. Typically shaped like a crescent, hobo bags are designed to fit over one's shoulder more snugly, and they are a little smaller in size compared to normal totes. Hobo bags are pretty versatile, since they can be worn whether at work or during a casual night-out!
A sub-category of the shoulder bag, a satchel is substantially bigger than a crossbody bag because it's meant to hold more stuff like books, a small laptop, or other larger essentials. That's why they are the go-to bag of students or professionals who want something laidback, hands-free, yet still roomy enough to carry everything they need.
Another variety of the shoulder bag, crossbody bags are usually smaller than the normal handbags because the goal is to be able to wear it across the other shoulder comfortably, approximating the feeling that you're not carrying any purse at all! Crossbody purses are perfect for running errands or traveling as they are meant to be un-cumbersome!
Want something that can hold just the bare minimum like your cards, small wallet, lipstick and smartphone? Then grab yourself a clutch bag! These purses can come in envelope form, or with a zipper fastening. Some also have an attached wristlet for better security, or feature a thin metallic chain strap that you can stash away. They're great for more formal events and fancier occasions!
Typically used for traveling or going to the gym, a duffel bag has its roots in the military, hence its highly utilitarian design. Duffel bags are large, cylindrical and fastened at the top with a zipper. Modern ones are becoming more and more stylish, with high end luxury houses producing their own version of this uber-functional handbag.
The traditional doctor's bag is meant to hold a physician's medical necessities when they make house calls. But over the years, the doctor's bag has seen a makeover and has crossed over into the mainstream fashion scene. And it's easy to see why! Like duffel bags, doctor's bags are highly functional and make for unconventional travel bags or even office purse!
We would be remiss if we didn't include this hot new trend that has taken the fashion world by storm ever since pop superstar Lizzo made it viral in 2019. Micro bags are NOT for carrying anything bigger than a credit card or a lip gloss. They're meant to defy what purses are supposed to be for. Micro bags may seem ridiculous to some, but we think it's the most stylish form of rebellion!
At the end of the day, this is by no means a list of all the types of handbags you need in your closet. What's most important is that you find the the right bag that's not only a good fit for your lifestyle, but also makes you feel confident whatever the occasion.
So go ahead and be bold and creative with your purse choices!