How To Pick The Right Handbag For YOUR Lifestyle

It’s hard not to crave a new handbag every season, but finding the right one is a surprisingly personal and often difficult task. There’s much to consider: your bag should fit your lifestyle, your sense of style, and of course, there’s budget to consider. From totes to clutches, consider this your education for when you inevitably embark on a hunt for the perfect bag for you.

Top-Handle Satchel



The most ladylike of all bags, it’s is also quite versatile, given the different carrying options. It’s a great choice for the girl who doesn’t have time to change her bag often, as it seamlessly transitions from day to night and work week to weekend.

On Kate Bosworth:
Hudson London Overalls ($245) in Night Train; 10 Crosby Derek Lam Seam Tee ($95) in White; Robert Clergerie Frak Sandals ($330) in Black; Dolce & Gabbana Embroidered Tote ($2,797) in White

Sophie Hulme Soft Flap Leather Satchel ($780) in Black

We love the minimalistic hardware on this versatile satchel. 

3.1 Phillip Lim Small Topstitched Ryder Satchel ($665) in Emerald

You’ll be surprised how many hues you can pair with this sleek bag.  

Marni Colorblock Faux-Leather Top-Handle 2-in-1 Bag ($890) in Black Multi

The color combination on this mod bag will never go out of style.



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If you only need a few essential items to get you through your day, we applaud your resourcefulness and recommend a clutch. Bonus: your aching shoulders will thank you.

On Olivia Palermo:
​AG Adriano Goldschmied Ankle Legging Jeans ($224) available in 11 Year Swap Meet; Wunderkind Turquoise Ocelot Sunglasses ($310); Christian Louboutin Pigalle Pumps ($1,295) available in Spiked White Multi

Ela Large Editor’s Star Pouch ($298) in Blue Crush

The bold color plus subtle star pattern on this roomy clutch equals instant favorite status.

Joie Bianca Envelope Clutch ($248) in Black

We’re suckers for anything trimmed in rose gold. This sturdy clutch is perfection.

Lizzie Furtunato Jewels Front Row Leopard Clutch ($250)

This neutral leopard-print clutch will be your go-to for summer and beyond. 

Bucket Bag



If you’re the type of girl who has tons of stuff to tote around, but doesn’t want anyone to know it, this bag is for you. The bucket bag is the most deceptively roomy of the bunch. Even better: this trendy style is going to be around for a while, so don’t be afraid to take the plunge!

On Kirsten Dunst:
A.L.C. Agnus Flared Stretch-Jersey Mini Skirt; Mansur Gavriel Bucket Bag; Stella McCartney Butterfly Acetate Cat's-Eye Sunglasses ($190) in Grey Tortoise

Proenza Schouler Medium Bucket Bag ($1,425) in Black/Pepe/Roccia/Black

You’ll wear this bucket bag all year long. The snakeskin panel is an inspired touch that takes this bag to obsession-level status. 

Alexander Wang Diego Dumbo Metallic Bucket Bag ($950) in Rose Gold

There’s no such thing as too much rose gold. 

Loeffler Randall Crossbody Haircalf Industry Bucket Bag ($350) in Zebra/Black

The tassel detail on this luxe bucket bag is a lovely touch.

Cross-Body Bag


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If keeping your hands free and your belongings secure is important to you, you’re probably a cross-body bag girl. Perfect if you’re on the go, this handbag style can go from day to night, depending on the size.

On Alexa Chung:
​Louis Vuitton Keepall 50 Bag ($1,370); Vintage Chanel Flap Bag

Rachael Ruddick Slouchy Octavia Cross Body Bag ($525) in Dusty Pink

You can’t beat a buttery bag in the perfect shade of pink. The dainty gold chain puts this cross-body in a league of its own. 

Zara Leather Messenger Bag With Fringe ($129) in Multicolour

This is the perfect day-to-night bag. The fringe is on-trend, yet subtle. 

IIIBeCa by Joy Gryson Studded Duane Street Messenger Bag ($298) in Sky

We love the edgy studs on this boxy blue bag. 



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Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that backpacks are BIG right now. Case in point: the Olsens designed and carry a version. A luxe leather style will keep the look from venturing into schoolgirl territory.

On Diane Kruger:
​Rebecca Minkoff Dress; Chanel S/S 14 Backpack; Peter Pilotto for Target sneakers

Milly Riley Backpack ($365) in Black

This is the perfectly sized, wear-with-everything backpack. 

French Connection Buckle Up Rucksack Backpack ($69) in Smoke

The price on this uniquely shaped backpack is unbeatable, and it’s a great option if you’re looking for a smaller take on the backpack.

Deux Lux Karma Backpack ($130) in Navy

Colorful tassels scream summer on this weekend-ready backpack.



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The tote is the best option if you like to throw everything thing in your bag and go. This style is also ideal for traveling, as it will fit your electronics, magazines, cardigan—you name it! Tip: if you prefer a day-to-night bag, a tote bag might not be the best choice, but we think everyone needs one in their collection for work and travel.

On Alessandra Ambrosio:
Big Star Avery Cropped Chino Pants ($69) in Blue; Elysewalker Los Angeles Dee Suede Espadrille Loafers ($355) in Beige; Michael Kors Miranda Large Leather Tote ($1,295) in Desert; Louis Vuitton Eole 50 Bag ($2,500)

Clare Vivier Simple Tote ($429) in Navy Suede Lavender Stripes

This tote has won our hearts, thanks to the coolest color combination and sporty graphic stripes.

Rochas Zig Zag Tote ($1,420) in Black & White

You can’t beat a timeless tote that has major investment appeal. The lattice trim is adorable and sophisticated—win, win!

Marni Printed Coated-Canvas Tote ($370) in Bluette

The painterly print on this designer tote is gorgeous and the coated canvas material is a nice change of pace—you won’t have to fret if you get caught in a summer shower. 

Which handbag style is your favorite? Sound-off in the comments! 

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