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August 21, 2019 2 min read

That time has come again to choose a bag for College… Finding the right bag can certainly feel like one of the hardest decisions to make as a College student! Two of the most common College bags are totes and backpacks, but which one is right for you??

If you’re one to carry a heavy load of books, laptops, chargers, etc. backpacks are the obvious go-to-bag. They are easier to carry (especially for those that like to carry coffee, snacks, etc. in between class), kinder to our shoulders, and easier to run with - for those who may be late for class

As totes are worn on one shoulder, they tend to cause more strain on the shoulder and back. However, they tend to look more chic and cute than backpacks, with a wider choice of style and also have the versatility of looking good both in and out of class. Who’s ever been in that awkward situation of going to a busy café/mall or riding the subway with their backpack and nutting anyone that gets within a foot of you?

BUT have you considered leather backpacks? Not only is leather renowned for its quality and durability, it offers a timeless style that is sure to ‘out-cute’ some totes out there. Leather is a great alternative to the every day polyester/nylon book bags that springs to mind when you first think of backpack.

In particular, full-grain leather offers this unique and stunning pattern of almost-distressed, vintage-style look. The blemishes, color variations and markings of the hide are truly unique, with no two bags ever looking the same.


Perhaps getting both a backpack and a tote, and alternating between the two based on whether you have a heavy or light load for the day, maybe the best compromise - although it sure can be difficult with a student budget.

An important consideration when purchasing a leather bag is to ensure you choose high-quality leather – you’ll be surprised at the quality of some high street leather bags! Whilst often they are advertised as ‘genuine leather’, portraying the idea of good quality leather – this is often not the case. Whilst ‘Genuine leather’ is made of real leather, it is often the low quality made from split leather. This is much weaker than other types, such as full-grain leather. Full-grain leather is widely regarded as the highest quality of leather.

Regardless of whether you decide to go with a backpack or tote, from MAHI or any other brand, there are common important considerations to make: fabric (if leather, ensure you go for a high-quality leather-like full-grain), storage space, practicality, and comfortableness. Choosing a backpack for days you need to carry more books, and a tote for days you need to carry less is often the best compromise. Even better excuse to get two new bags!

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