15 Of The Best Leather Backpacks That Will Finally Upgrade You To Adult-Status (Updated 2022)

Fashion

From Jansport and Eastpak to the fancier Kipling (if you know, you know). Backpacks were a back-to-school necessity that stayed glued to us during our teenage years. If you think backpacks are a thing of the past, we’re here to convince you they’re not just for kids anymore.

The simple solution to pulling off a backpack as an adult is to invest in a leather option—a.k.a. the grown-up backpack. There’s no doubt the best leather backpacks are the easiest (and baller-ist) way to lug around your belongings as a busy guy. They free up your hands for a venti iced coffee, and they’re sturdy enough to handle your work commute. 

If you need an upgrade from your favorite high school bookbag, or you want to switch things up from your briefcase, we’re here to help. Here are the best leather backpacks for men you can buy right now.

Our Top Picks

man holding a leather backpacks during the golden hour
howard__london / Instagram

This is the best option for the everyday guy looking for something simple and not too flashy. Leatherology’s Sloan Backpack has a minimal design with no unnecessary details. It’s so versatile that you’ll have no trouble styling it with most (if not all) of your outfits. 

The deliciously soft full-grain leather is surprising in two ways. One, it’s surprisingly durable. Two, the price tag won’t make you cry. Not a bad excuse to snag one in each color and maybe even spring for their personalization option.

Dimensions: 16 x 12 x 5 in | Colors: Black, Brown, Navy, + | Number of Pockets: 4 | Hardware color: Silver, Gold

Leatherology Sloan Backpack

If you’re down to splurge on a designer product, why not go for the most luxurious choice? Saint Laurent has been the picture of luxury for years. This is one of the best leather backpacks, it’s the sleekest (and sexiest) option that’ll make you feel like an off-duty model everywhere you go. 

Like the name “City” bag suggests, it’s ideal for urban dudes with busy schedules and stylish lifestyles. And the proof is in the breathable fabric. Even in sweltering temperatures, your back won’t turn into a swamp. The headphone port is a nice touch, too.

This backpack looks good with everything, but we’d especially drool over it styled with a Saint Laurent leather jacket and skinny jeans. It’s the ultimate glam-rock look.

Dimensions: 16.9 x 12.2 in | Colors: Black | Number of Pockets: 2 | Hardware color: Silver 

Saint Laurent City Leather Backpack

The best leather backpacks are on the wishlists of many fashionistas is The Runwell Backpack by Shinola. It’s versatile, durable, and casual with lots of useful pockets—checking off every point on our criteria list. 

We get it, it’s pricey—but hear us out, it’s well worth the investment. This premium leather backpack will patina beautifully, meaning it’ll get cooler looking over time. Like your girlfriend’s Hermès Kelly or the expensive bottle of wine you’re saving up for ‘the day,’ your backpack’s value will increase as it vintages. 

If you want to stick to tones you’re already familiar with, go for the black, gray, or brown options for the most versatility. But if you’re feeling spicy, we’re eyeing the yellow one for a non-boring option.

Dimensions: 17 x 10.38 x 6 in | Colors: Black, Brown, Gray, Yellow | Number of Pockets: 3 | Hardware color: Silver 

Shinola The Runwell Backpack

In our minds, the best leather backpacks (especially brown leather) excell at giving off a classy, vintage feel—like a stylish, Italian old man on the subway reading the newspaper. This Agape Leather Backpack from Álvaro achieves just that, and we’re here for it.

With the butter-soft calf brown leather and sophisticated, minimal design, this backpack just screams ‘class.’ Wear it with your semi-formal outfit for the office or with a casual fit for weekends away.

One thing to note is the calf leather. Although it’s mind-bogglingly soft, it will collect more scratches than other leathers over time. Don’t count it out too quickly, though. It molds to your body over time, and those scratches only add character. We promise it’ll evolve into a gorgeous vintage piece your future grandchildren will want to steal from you.

Dimensions: 31 x 40 x 10 cm | Colors: Black, Brown | Number of Pockets: 2 | Hardware color: Gold 

Álvaro Agape Leather Backpack

If you want to feel extra British and retro without being overly rustic, we recommend a vintage leather backpack like this one by Mismo. The fold-down design and brass accents are critical in giving off a reminiscent, vintage vibe that’ll transport you to the Peaky Blinders set.

Though it’s simple enough to blend in with your usual outfits, this vintage leather backpack is not your average bag you’ll see on every block—show off your unique sense of style with this one, a guaranteed compliment-getter.  

Style the best leather backpacks with a white linen shirt and raw jeans or cargo pants for an elevated schoolboy look. No, that doesn’t include a velcro wallet.

Dimensions: 16.1x 12.6 in | Colors: Brown | Number of Pockets: 2 | Hardware color: Gold  

Not all of the best leather backpacks for men require you to drop grands (phew!). Samsonite’s Classic Leather Slim Backpack is here to save your wallet from any troubles.

Don’t let the friendly price tag fool you—with Samsonite’s unbeatable reputation as a leading luggage manufacturer, the quality and style are guaranteed. 

The design is minimal and modern, making it suitable for all outfits and occasions. Well, almost… Maybe leave it at home for black tie events. But your casual outfits and workwear attire just found a new best friend.

Dimensions: 10.63 x 5.51 x 16.14 in | Colors: Brown, Black | Number of Pockets: 4 | Hardware color: Silver  

Samsonite Classic Leather Slim Backpack

Even the best leather backpacks are faux and make a smart alternative for guys who prefer animal-free fashion. Kenneth Cole’s option has over a thousand positive reviews on Amazon. Sustainability never looked so good—or affordable.

But wait, there’s another bonus: RFID. This backpack features an anti-theft radio frequency identification blocking technology that keeps radio waves from being transmitted from U.S. passports and certain credit cards. You’ll finally travel with peace of mind. Pretty cool, eh?

With the clean lines and edgy design, this backpack is a fun piece to style with bold pops of color for a trendy, laid-back look.

Dimensions: 16 x 12 x 5.5 in | Colors: Black, Brown, Cognac | Number of Pockets: 3 | Hardware color: Silver  

Kenneth Cole On Track Pack Vegan Leather Backpack

If you know anything about Italian leather, you know nothing beats Berluti’s signature Venezia leather. Berluti’s premium quality leather goods range from dress shoes to jackets. And now that backpacks are on the wishlists of many luxury lovers, this one deserves a round of applause. 

With Berluti’s rich history since its founding in 1895, the brand has kept its renowned reputation as a prestigious leather maker for centuries. The dedication to their craft is why this bag seamlessly grows with you. The color gradually alters depending on sun exposure and care. Does it get any more one of a kind than that?

The price tag is a tad brutal, but it’s worth the investment. Trust us—you’ll thank us decades later. 

Dimensions: 18.1 x 12.4 in | Colors: Brown, Cognac | Number of Pockets: 2 | Hardware color: Silver  

Berluti Scritto Leather Backpack

If you are looking for a travel-friendly backpack, look no further than the king of travel luggage, Tumi. Tumi’s signature Voyageur backpack is available in versatile black leather to meet your needs for all travel occasions. 

Including dedicated pockets for your laptop, phone, umbrella, water bottle, and keys, this backpack makes organization a breeze even for over-packers. But the best part is the ‘Add-a-bag’ system. You can slip the pack onto your carry-on suitcase’s handle for easy, hands-free commuting. More hands for coffee is never bad.

Dimensions: 41 x 33 x 14 cm | Colors: Black | Number of Pockets: 4 | Hardware color: Gold  

Tumi Voyageur Backpack

Sometimes you just want to transport the essentials in style. And leave it to Prada to nail the small but powerful look. Minimalists rejoice—your ideal small leather bag is here. This is the most masculine and stylish a murse (man’s purse) will ever get. 

Wear it as a backpack or a shoulder bag; either way, it will instantly elevate your outfit. Style your murse with a plain white t-shirt and black jeans for the ultimate off-duty look. The embossed Prada logo is a subtle flex point, too.

Dimensions: 32 x 6.5 x 17 cm | Colors: Black | Number of Pockets: 1 | Hardware color: Silver  

Don’t worry. Harber London’s Slim Laptop Backpack is here to break the stereotype of ugly laptop bags. If you have to lug around a laptop all day, you may as well look good doing it. 

Don’t let the slim and compact visual fool you—this backpack even includes built-in pockets inside to fit an additional tablet and keyboard if needed. And if you’re the guy who chose a 16” screen over reading glasses, they considerately offer two backpack sizes to fit laptops of various dimensions.

Dimensions: 34 x 26 x 4.5 cm, 40 x 28 x 4.5 cm | Colors: Black, Tan, Deep Brown | Number of Pockets: 1 | Hardware color: Black   

If you’re looking to add a little oomph to your outfits, a suede leather backpack is an easy solution. Unlike its leather counterparts, suede gives off a classier, more luxurious vibe. 

Fendi embossed their logo just enough to get you some head turns without looking pretentious. A cable-knit sweater and a pair of chinos make a very smart impression paired with this bag candy. Warning—side effects include feeling like a royal majesty.

Dimensions: 11.8 x 8.7 in | Colors: Gray | Number of Pockets: 1 | Hardware color: Metal/Stainless Steel  

Fendi Mini Leather Sling Backpack

You know those heels women wear with the eye-catching red sole? The men’s version of those comes in backpack form. Christian Louboutin’s Backpack is the best of both worlds—style and function. 

If you’re already a professional fashionista, you have tons of bold styling options with this bag. And you’re not, there’s no need to stress. This backpack can be the main star of the show in any outfit. Get ready to impress some people.

Dimensions: n/a | Colors: Black | Number of Pockets: 2 | Hardware color: Silver

Christian Louboutin Backparis Spiked Rubber-Trimmed Full-Grain Leather Backpack

Businessmen on the go turn to Allen Edmonds time and time again. Their tech backpack has the ‘serious’ feel of a briefcase with the convenience of a backpack. Magic. It’s the perfect addition to a career-driven closet.

You might remember Allen Edmonds as the well-respected, upscale shoe company that your investment analyst friend (or yourself) raved about in the past. We’re not surprised that they’re making impeccable bags as well now with their premium leather—really meeting the needs of their customers. Pro tip: this bag looks great with a pair of their shoes.

Dimensions: 11.5 x 6 x 14 in | Colors: Brown | Number of Pockets: 2 | Hardware color: Brass  

Allen Edmonds Saddle Leather Tech Backpack

Waterproof. Animal-free. Eco-friendly. This backpack is a triple threat. 

Since it’s made from recycled plastic, it’s super lightweight and low maintenance. Crack, tears, and scratches will never cross your mind while you’re toting this environment saver around. This is the ideal backpack for accident-prone dudes who want a no-fuss backpack. Bring on the rain.

Dimensions: 16 x 12 x 7 in | Colors: Black, Navy, Brown, Gray | Number of Pockets: 2 | Hardware color: Silver   

What To Look For When Searching For The Best Leather Backpacks

Material

When you’re searching for the best leather backpacks, it’s important to figure out what type of leather you prefer. First, decide if you want real or faux leather. Real leathers have a more premium feel, and they tend to last longer. However, faux leather is more affordable and animal-free. For the most durable option, go for a thicker material like cowhide (or recycled faux material). For a softer feel, stick to calfskin or Italian leather. Vegan leather is making waves in the soft leather category too. And if you’re searching for an extra luxurious look, suede is a great option.

ted_baker_menswear / Instagram

Color

The best leather backpacks are extremely durable, so they’ll last for years (if not decades) in your wardrobe. That means you want to pick a versatile color you’ll wear a lot but also won’t get sick of too soon. We recommend a classic black or brown because they’re the easiest to style. And as a bonus, they also age nicely into vintage pieces. If you’re drawn to more vibrant colors, maybe consider investing in two backpacks. 

Dimensions

Dimensions are often forgotten but very important. Check the measurements of your future backpack to make sure your essential ‘backpack items’ are a guaranteed match. There’s nothing worse than getting ready to hit the town and realizing your laptop or gym shoes won’t fit. 

FAQ

    • The best leather backpacks are durable and versatile. It’s a pretty safe bet they go well with almost all of your everyday outfits. Top options are usually made with the finest materials and impeccable craftsmanship to last for years.

      • Leather backpacks are available from luxury designers, luggage brands, specialty leather stores, and many more. Since most shopping is done online now, we always recommend checking out reviews. And, of course, trusting fashion experts like us. 

        • To get rid of light leather scuffs on backpacks, simply spot clean using a soft, damp cloth and let it air dry. For darker or older scuffs, take your leather backpack to a leather specialist like you would with any leather clothing item. Please don’t put leather in the washing machine. The results will make you very sad.

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