Offices across the country are slowly opening up to employees again. And, if yours is one of them, it’s time to trade in your pandemic-casual WFH look for something a little more put-together. One thing you definitely don’t want to forget in the process? Your work bag.
Sure, you probably have a work bag that you used back when life was a little more normal but—let’s be honest—that was a while ago. And, even if you (and your work bag) have been reporting for in-person duty this whole time, your needs have clearly changed. The best work bag circa 2021 is one with ample room to safely stash your mask, backup mask, and hand sanitizer, as well as all the other stuff you need to make it through the day.
With kids heading back to school and getting their new gear, it’s only natural to think about doing the same for yourself. These are the best work bags out there right now, whether you’re looking to tote around a little—or a lot—of gear.
The Abroad Tote
This Madewell leather tote has a simple-yet-stylish silhouette that’ll match with just about any look. You’ve got options to carry this bag around: Flip between using the bag’s top handles or adjustable shoulder strap. The interior pocket is the perfect place to keep your masks (stowed away from all your other totables), while the main portion of the bag is roomy enough to house your laptop and then some. Choose between black and camel shades.
Athleta’s Kinetic backpack is sleek enough to take you from the gym to the office. Made of recycled nylon, this bag is soft to the touch, whether you choose it in black or olive. It also has plenty of features inside to cover you while you’re away from home, including a laptop zipper pocket in the back, front stash pocket for masks and/or sanitizer, two water compartments, and even a separate shoe storage bag so eau de gym doesn’t seep into your work gear.
Triple Compartment Tote
This top-rated roomy bag has plenty of interior pockets to safely contain your stuff. Enjoy a triple compartment storage design with zippered pockets to separately stash your wallet, keys, masks, water bottle, and more. The faux leather exterior—which comes in cognac, black, and leopard hues—is dressy enough, but also looks great while you’re running Saturday errands.
Tech Gibson Messenger
This Herschel bag has so many subtle ways to sort your gear, you’ll feel hyper-organized before you even leave your door. Enjoy a padded, fleece-lined laptop sleeve to help protect against accidental drops (it happens), a front compartment with organizers and a key clip, and a front storage sleeve. A removable shoulder strap lets you carry this boss bag like a satchel or tote—your choice.
Kira Chevron Quilted Leather Tote
Consider this Tory Burch bag a work tote with a twist. The Kira has a cool chevron quilted exterior along with gold chain-accented straps for a bold step above your classic work bag. Enjoy a roomy interior for all your gear with two zippered pockets, including one that’s just the right size for masks. It all buttons up easily with the help of magnetic snaps.
Waxed Canvas Briefcase
More casual than a standard briefcase, but polished enough for work, this messenger is ready for whatever your workday brings. A padded laptop sleeve keeps your tech safe, while a slew of internal and external pockets help you get organized in a flash. A waxed canvas exterior, which comes in dark khaki, feldspar, and navy, is strong enough to stand up to the elements, just in case you unexpectedly get caught in a rainstorm.
Kaya Laptop Backpack
The Kaya laptop backpack is a far cry from your average work bag. Encased in smooth faux leather, this bag features a zippered back compartment that’s big enough for a 15-inch laptop. It also has multiple interior pockets to separate and store your essentials while you go about your day. Travel for work a lot? A luggage trolley sleeve in the back easily slips over your suitcase handle. Choose from a bevvy of colors, including black, blush, stone, and charcoal.
Scouted selects products independently and prices reflect what was available at the time of publish. Don’t forget to check out our coupon site to find apparel deals from L.L.Bean, Lands’ End, Gap, and more. If you buy something from our posts, we may earn a small commission.