It’s also good for someone who doesn’t mind carrying around a bag with a style that’s midway between what they might have worn in elementary school and what they would take on a day hike. But it lacks the Lo & Sons bag’s capacity, and the looks are Basic with a capital B. You’ll need it to be durable so you won’t have to replace it, organized so it can hold all of the schoolwork and supplies, and good-looking so students actually want to wear it. Note: We are a readers-supported site and receive compensation from purchases made through the links in this post. Who it’s for: The Timbuk2 Authority Laptop Backpack Deluxe is a great bag that has a lot of space if you intend to carry around a ton of tech and your main concern is keeping it all organized—and safe. On top of that, the fabric is made of recycled polyester and each bag saves 18 water bottles from going into a landfill. Spacious interior is well-organized. You will never have to worry about a caught zipper, as this pack uses stylish straps … It comes in other colors and prints as well as larger sizes and wheeled versions. The only downside is it’s missing extra support straps around the chest and waist. If you prefer a more simple design, L.L.Bean also its popular Original Book Pack in a variety of colors. It also has two side pockets—for a 32-ounce water bottle and an umbrella, for instance—and they unzip to expand. Our favorite backpack is the L. L. Bean Quad Pack (available at L.L. Although you should be fine packing the AmazonBasics Sports Backpack with all of your essentials, you simply can’t fit the same amount of stuff inside it as you can fit inside the Lo & Sons bag. It’s made with tough materials, so it can take a beating on a walk or the bus. The Hakuba thankfully makes that organization easy. Here are the best kids backpacks for the 2020 school year: With high scores across the board, L.L.Bean's rugged backpack is durable, functional, and kid-friendly thanks to the variety of fun prints. She told us that her only regret was that she didn’t buy a Herschel bag sooner. In what was probably an ill-advised test influenced by the pandemic, our tester ran with this bag on their back for 3½ miles in New York City, from Williamsburg to Downtown Brooklyn. With sleek lines and a flat-to-the-body shape, the Rains is tiny and stylish—but … Instance 1. Plus, it comes in tons of colors and a version made specifically for female bodies. So here is the best backpack for high school that prevents back pain and shoulder pain. The bag spread weight evenly across our tester’s back, and its pads were cushioned enough that they never felt as if they were digging into our tester’s shoulders. Why it’s great: Though Everlane’s The Modern Snap Backpack isn’t the most durable, the fanciest, or the most impeccably constructed bag available, it is very, very good on all of those counts, which makes it great for the price. 15 Best Backpacks for High School: Reviews For Students. We may earn commission from links on this page, but we only recommend products we back. Stylish Kids Haircuts and Looks for School, High quality fabric made from recycled water bottles, Laptop compartment with built-in USB port, Material wasn't as abrasian- or water-resistant in tests, The brand isn't among the most durable in our tests, Ideal for those who prefer minimal designs. We found the two separate exterior zipper pockets on the front useful for smaller things that we wanted to access regularly, such as keys, an external battery pack, and an SD card. The Fjällräven Kånken Laptop Backpack is a nostalgia-inducing backpack with an 18-liter capacity, a light weight, limited (but practical) organization, and scant padding. It also has a zippered pocket against the back for valuables and waterproof materials to help the contents stay safe. I also added some facts about backpacks and a short buying guide. Some of these choices are bags we looked at specifically for this guide whereas others are recommendations selected from our other bag guides, but all of them have been thoroughly tested by Wirecutter staff. The Hakuba’s roomier interior meant that, overall, it was easier to load up with school and gym gear than the AmazonBasics was. Simply put, it’s a functional, affordable, sophisticated, unisex backpack. Buying guide for best school rolling backpacks. The backpack you choose also needs to be appropriate for what your school requires. The shoulder straps are seamless, low-profile extensions of the twill exterior rather than the heavily padded technical straps that often mar the otherwise classic design of bags in this category. Photo: Tim Heffernan, The back panel of the Everlane Modern Snap Backpack. It lacks both an external laptop pocket (though it does have an internal sleeve) and water-bottle pockets. Dimensions: 18.9 by 11.8 by 5.1 inchesWeight: 2.6 pounds. There’s a lot to think about during high school and college besides just studying, from potential job offers to bonafide heartbreak, but you still need a way to carry your stuff. This is a small, durable, and practical 18-liter backpack with almost no padding. Since our first round of testing in 2015, we’ve tested dozens of backpacks in a variety of styles to find the best bags for high school and college students. This super popular style from The North Face was a top-performer in our tests over 10 years ago and still continues to impress both our experts and real users. Plus, it has lots of compartments to keep students organized, including a padded sleeve for laptops. 3. Dimensions: 11 by 8.75 by 4.25 inchesWeight: 1.5 pounds. It can also be monogramed for $10 to make it extra personal. The pockets in the Everlane Modern Snap Backpack. The picks ahead are winners from our test along with some new styles with unique features and rave reviews. If you like the idea of a simple, durable bag but prefer a classic American style, the JanSport Right Pack Backpack may be the bag for you. We surveyed students on the best college backpacks available based on comfort, durability, organization, weight and style. From kindergarten through college, these styles have your kids' backs. It’s an Amazon best-seller with over 15,000 reviews from users who swear it’s both useful and professional. The right school backpack should be able to carry all of the books and supplies you need for a long day of classes while also being comfortable, affordable, and stylish (whatever “stylish” means to you). There's also good padding in the back and on the shoulder straps, plus lots of compartments to keep kids organized. Here’s What You Need. The updated Kånken Laptop Backpack retains the youthful charm and versatility of its namesake while gaining adult features such as a separate padded laptop compartment and extra padding on the straps to accommodate heavier loads. We stuffed a pair of 11EE sneakers, a bulky cotton hoodie, a pair of nylon board shorts, a sunglasses case, a thick hardcover book, a phone, a 15-inch MacBook, a charger for each, and a 16-ounce bottle of water into the Modern Snap. There's also a Junior version of this backpack for Kindergarten and nursery ages. If you tend to lose umbrellas and forget to check the weather before stumbling out of your dorm late for class, the waterproofing on the Rains is a gift from the gods. Long-term test notes: Wirecutter editor Tim Barribeau has had the Everlane Modern Snap Backpack for more than five years and notes that although the material has scuffed and lightened around the edges, it’s still in great shape. Why it’s great: The AmazonBasics Sports Backpack is a laptop backpack that you can use as a gym bag, too, as long as you’re willing to make some compromises in organization and style. Best For Laptops & Computers. If you’re in college, you might need just a laptop and a paper notebook because most everything is online. The Good Housekeeping Institute Textiles Lab tests backpacks for durability features like tear strength, strap strength, and abrasion resistance as well as comfort aspects like the amount of padding in the straps and weight when it's empty. There is nothing more to return to school than to shop for a new kid’s Backpacks for School students, but it’s hard to check all the boxes for both parents and kids. The best work backpacks have large main compartments, anti-theft features and water-resistant exteriors. So choose a backpack based on what you’ll need, and keep in mind—as much as you can—the American Association of Pediatrics recommendation that your bag and its contents should never weigh more than 10% to 20% of your body weight. The cylinder expands or contracts to accommodate varying loads, and the lid adjusts to accommodate them, as well. The Rains doesn’t have space for much, but its laptop pouch and inner zippered pocket—perfect for your laptop and phone chargers—keep your basics organized, with room for a few more items if you need that. Keeping student budgets in mind, as well as an understanding of how someone might use a backpack both in and outside of school, we looked for options that cost $140 or less. Why it’s great: If you want something that’s fashionable but still comfortable, smartly organized, and easy to get around with, the Rains Backpack Mini balances those seemingly opposed qualities in a slim package. The back compartment is suitable for a memo pad or a laptop up to 17 inches, as is the main pocket in the bag’s central compartment. Flaws but not dealbreakers: The Hakuba is big, but it has to be—when a backpack is helping you transition from school to the gym, it needs to be large enough to carry all of your stuff. Best Overall: L.L.Bean Original Book Pack at "This bag will hold up through the school year and way beyond with their solid durability." In continuous production since 1990, the Right Pack is made of tough Cordura nylon (with a suede-leather bottom) and has a lifetime unconditional warranty to back it up—these bags are built to last. The enormous central compartment can fit multiple folders, textbooks, and a laptop, without breaking a sweat, or compromising on the safety of your valuable equipment. It’s sturdy: It has lasted five years without any ripping at the seams, despite regularly toting around a laptop and notebooks. Manufactured by Jansport, the Big Student Backpack has an iconic design and is suitable for both men, as well as women, and has everything that a student needs from a school bag. The shoulder purse has an adjustable strap to be carried as an across body bag or over the shoulder. Lastly, we have standard packing loads for different age groups to make sure it’ll hold everything they need. Photo: Lo & Sons. The pack’s fit was stable and comfortable, thanks to a removable sternum strap (which connected its two shoulder straps and kept everything in place) and an air-mesh ventilated back panel that helped our tester minimize (their rosy-smelling) back sweat. If it’s not available right when you want to buy it, chances are good that the bag will come back, but it’s never clear exactly when. We tested this feature accidentally when walking from a favorite coffee shop through a brief lightning storm, and the Rains, true to its name, kept everything in the bag totally dry. Why trust us? This bag also lacks back-panel ventilation, so you’re going to work up a sweat on hot days unless you decide to carry it by its briefcase handles. Trendy Backpacks Extra-Large Backpacks Best Laptop Backpacks Best Backpacks for College *Disclaimer: Inventory may fluctuate due to product availability. From lugging heavy textbooks to and from school to enduring leaky lunchboxes, your little student’s backpack has to be durable if it's going to last until the end of the school year. There’s also a key ring in the frontmost exterior zipper pocket. The Hakuba comes with Lo & Sons’s one-year warranty, which covers product defects and damages, in case your workouts ever get out of hand. If you’ve got a kid who loves to stand out, you need to check out this sparkly backpack. It held our packing load with room to spare, uses fabric that’s both durable and water-repellent, and has excellent padding in the straps. If you don’t need as much space as this bag provides, consider the AmazonBasics Sports Backpack; it holds a lot less, but it’s cheap, more traditionally shaped, and a pound lighter. The affordable AmazonBasics Sports Backpack offers a shoe pocket, which makes this bag a great choice for school and the gym. The shoulder bag can put a small notebook or iPad Mini. It’s substantial (20 inches tall) with space for a laptop, a large pocket for books, and a zippered front accessory pocket for small items like pens and keys. Whether you’re sending your kid back to school, planning for more distance learning, or preparing for a hybrid of the two, here’s the gear you need. If you’re a high school or college student, you need a bag that can carry your books, electronics, and school supplies alongside whatever you might need for the gym, rehearsal, or a late night stuck inside the basement of the library. Backpacks … Our favorite durable-but-not-too-expensive bedding, accessories, kitchen gear, and tools for your dorm room. Designed for toddlers to kindergarteners, this animal-themed backpack comes in tons of animal and character options. Herschel Supply Co.’s Retreat backpack is as known for its reliability as it is for its distinct design. Originally a surf brand, these school bags are made to stand up to anything and, as you would expect, come fully loaded with features. © 2021 Wirecutter, Inc., A New York Times Company, most practical and long-lasting bag to carry a bunch of textbooks and tech, something made of canvas with a throwback style, gym bag that also has room for a laptop and textbooks, Best small, stylish backpack: Rains Backpack Mini, Best backpack for organizing your tech: Timbuk2 Authority Laptop Backpack Deluxe, Best polished gym bag: Lo & Sons The Hakuba, Best budget backpack for the gym: AmazonBasics Sports Backpack, Best stylish school backpack: Everlane The Modern Snap Backpack, Best nostalgic backpack: Fjällräven Kånken Laptop Backpack, American Association of Pediatrics recommendation, A stylish backpack for the minimalist commuter, Holds a lot of tech, takes a lot of abuse, A sleek bag for all your school and workout gear, The cheapest way to carry all of your gym and school supplies, The Best School Supplies for Back to School. The Herschel Supply Co. Retreat Backpack is one of the best backpacks for college students who find themselves lugging a lot of tech across campus on a regular basis. The Right Pack has a cavernous 31-liter capacity that can swallow whatever you put in it, though if you overpack it, the bag will bulge noticeably. This classic backpack from L.L.Bean is up for the job. We’ve been reviewing backpacks at Wirecutter for years, looking at hundreds of backpacks and testing dozens of them across a variety of styles and situations, and we’ve pulled together our findings to create these recommendations for high school and college students. Cotton also stains easily, so the dark-colored versions will mask but not hide dirt. It’s smaller than other backpacks so it’ll fit little bodies, yet still has compartments for snacks and supplies, plus a loop on top so kids can hang it on their hooks. It comes with an AmazonBasics one-year limited warranty. On top of that, it also has some functional features: the large main compartment has a padded laptop sleeve and there are smaller pockets on the outside. Some of our product experts use this one at home with their young children and see just how much the toddlers love showing off the characters at school or on outings. Lined inside pocket makes it possible to safely carry a … Dimensions: 18 by 12 by 5.5 inchesWeight: 1.9 pounds. Dimensions: 16.5 by 11 by 7 inchesWeight: 1 pound. He uses it frequently for carrying groceries via bicycle, and it can hold a substantial weight. We loved it. So don’t worry about what—or how—you’re packing. 0 15 Best Backpacks for High School: Reviews For Students. High Sierra is known for producing quality school bags and this product is not an exception. This one from Lands’ End weighed less than any other in our test, but it still held our entire load for 7 to 12-year-olds with room to spare. Photo: Michael Hession, The Fjällräven Kånken Laptop Backpack’s pockets. Elsewhere in the bag, you can pack things like notepads, books (try Nobody Will Tell You This But Me by Bess Kalb, a yin to the yang of physical exercise), external power adapters, a water bottle, and your wallet, keys, and wireless headphones case. The one callout  is that there aren't straps at the waist and chest for added support. Available to choose a beautiful, Best kids Backpacks for School? A backpack’s load can get heavy enough, so students don’t need the bag itself weighing them down. Even more important, it’s just super comfortable to sling over your shoulder. Who it’s for: Someone who doesn’t need to pack much more beyond a small laptop, a light sweater, and a slim textbook—someone who cares about style and wants a bag that’s small, fashionable, and designed to keep their lab notes dry if they get stuck in a sudden downpour. It aced our Lab's abrasion resistance and drop testing, stood up to water repellency and tear strength tests, and held our test load with room to spare. These are the best school backpacks we tested: L.L. We also look at the overall design and organizational components and make sure that the material is water-resistant. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at, These Reusable Storage Bags Are a Game-Changer, Evidenced-Backed Ways Parents Can Be Like Teachers, Best Walmart Back-to-School Sales of 2020, 52 Easy Hairstyles for Girls to Try Before School. A back zippered section securely holds a phone and a meal-pass card for easy access, and its small, flat shape means it won’t cause you to bump into people in a crowded student union. Since picking the best backpack for college is one of the most important items on anyone’s back-to-school packing list, we created a guide just for you. Limted Time Only - While Supplies Last! The bag also has a clip on the front, which is handy for keys or gym key tags. The sleek Nike Utility Training Backpack keeps your gear organized and secure in style. On top of the bag, you’ll find two easily accessible zippered pockets for incidentals like your wallet, keys, lip balm, and headphones (all of which you might want quick access to). If you want a vintage-influenced backpack that will build up a patina over time, it may suit you. The Herschel Heritage Backpack is a sleek backpack with a classic and simple design. Everlane as a company has recently come under fire for the way it treats employees, which has been seen as running contrary to the company’s external claims of a commitment to ethics. The Timbuk2 Authority bag easily holds and organizes everything you need for the school day. The backpacks for back pain has a lot of compartments and large enough to store all your books for school or clothes for travel. JanSport is famous for its backpack collection for middle school students. The company has also added a water bottle pocket to the design. We have picks that will work whether you want the most practical and long-lasting bag to carry a bunch of textbooks and tech, you prefer something made of canvas with a throwback style, or you need a gym bag that also has room for a laptop and textbooks. Back pain has a near-perfect rating on Amazon from parents who say girls... & college students with room for laptops this enough: you do not want your socks. Good padding in the frontmost exterior zipper pocket to make sure that the bag should last well beyond that non-elasticized. Lunch bag and be hands-free be monogramed for $ 10 to make it extra personal ring in the frontmost zipper. Lug around airports in particular is Amazon 's choice for carrying groceries via bicycle, and the are. Way to evenly distribute weight, which is especially important if you’re high! 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