For the longest time, the briefcase has been considered a staple of professional life. However, times and styles have changed. Most professionals nowadays carry laptops, phone chargers and tablets to work. Some people might choose to work from home for a couple days a week and leave some of their things in their home office.
Most traditional briefcases are now considered overly formal and outdated. You’ll likely find that it’s pretty difficult to incorporate an old-school briefcase into a modern professional look.
So, do you invest in a leather handbag, or do you go for a stylish tote bag? To help, we’ve listed three briefcase alternatives for women.
- Tote bags
When it comes to being an all-rounder, the leather tote is undoubtedly the number one choice. It’s spacious, allowing you to carry laptops, make-up, lotions, water bottles, chargers, wallets and maybe even a set of gym clothes. Depending on the length of the straps, you can either carry it by hand or over your shoulder.
Most of the tote bags that you’ve seen have probably been made of canvas or burlap fabric. Although these types of bags are lightweight and easy to carry, they may not be appropriate for office use.
For a more professional look, see if you can get a sleek leather tote bag. These bags often come in shades of brown, black and white, making them easy to coordinate with your work outfit. Some leather tote bags are even reversible allowing you to easily switch up your style throughout the week.
One minor downside of tote bags is that they don’t have separate compartments. So, although you may be able to fit everything in, it can be a bit difficult to organize and find everything.
- Messenger bags
Messenger bags are laptop-sized carriers that go over your shoulder. Since they hang by your hip, they give easy access to your bag while you’re walking.
The main difference between tote bags and messenger bags are the compartments. Most messenger bags have at least two or three pockets that allow you to organize your cables, house keys and cards.
Of course, you can easily fit a laptop in the main part of the bag. If necessary, you can even squeeze in some documents or a book in there as well.
Most messenger bags are also quite discreet, which means they won’t distract from your work outfit.
When you think of backpacks, you probably get flashbacks of school days. How can something like that be stylish and professional? Well, the truth is modern backpacks can be fashionable if you know what you’re looking for.
The two style factors to consider are colour and size. To get a professional look, try and go for a bag with a single solid colour. Black and brown are pretty easy to incorporate into any office outfit. When it comes to size, make sure to don’t go overboard. Get a backpack that only fits things that you need. If you really want to streamline your look, you may have to leave your bulky water bottle and gym clothes in the car or at home.
If you ignore style and just look at practicality, backpacks are probably the most useful. The bigger backpacks have tons of pockets and have ample space for your bulkier items.
The best part of a backpack is that it evenly distributes the weight across your shoulders. Because of this, it is arguably the most comfortable bag that’s on this list. It doesn’t weigh down on one of your poor shoulders and it frees up both of your arms.
Hopefully, this gave you some ideas on what type of bag to bring to work. Who knows? The bag that suits you the most might not be any of the three listed above. Shop around and see what catches your eye. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different carriers to see what works for you.