The best tote bags for every occasion

We've rounded up the best tote bags for every occasion and budget, to help you shop without scrolling.

Best tote bags, including Marc Jacobs, Aspinal of London, Mulberry, Kate Spade, Hill & Friends, Longchamp
(Image credit: Future / Marc Jacobs / Aspinal of London / Mulberry / Kate Spade / Hill & Friends / Longchamp)

Tote bags have really stood the test of time. The perfect combination of style and practicality, the best tote bags are roomy enough for your essentials and ergonomic enough that you can carry them comfortably all day long. 

A wardrobe essential, the tote bag is a style that never goes out of fashion. Constantly reinvented, the latest handbag trends 2022 introduced us to both supersize and micro editions of fashion's most useful bag. Identifiable by its often, medium to large size, with two handles, long enough to sling over your shoulder, tote bags are usually without a fastening, or with a simple clasp for easy access. 

"Our continued love affair with the tote bag begins with it simply doing what it says on the tin, with its name routed in the North American terminology for 'carrying around’," says Emma Hill, Creative Director of Hill & Friends. "Totes obviously play a huge part in our working lives, serving as both mobile office and the all-important day to night transformer carry-all, but they also are pivotal in our leisure time, acting as the star player in trips to the beach and picnics."

So whether you're splashing out on one of the best designer bags or looking for a budget-friendly version, much like your best jeans, a tote bag is a capsule wardrobe necessity for busy women. 

The best tote bags—shopping links

The best tote bags hand-picked by our fashion team

Whatever the occasion, we’ve found the best tote bags for you

best tote bags by marc jacobs brown leather The Tote Bag

(Image credit: Marc Jacobs)

1. Marc Jacobs

Reasons to buy

Statement styles 
Good price range 

We couldn’t compile our best tote bags without a shout-out to American clothing brand Marc Jacobs. The canvas tote became a great marketing asset for brands who could add their logo to the fabric and allow people to experience the brand at a more affordable price. Marc Jacobs has had fun with it, giving each bag its own title. Buy into this cult trend, or opt for one of their leather options for longevity. 

Marc Jacobs Tote Bags–Fashion Editor's Picks

Best tote bags from Kate Spade include this heart printed bag

(Image credit: Kate Spade)

2. Kate Spade

Reasons to buy

Eye-catching designs 
Wide choice of vibrant colours 

Looking for a tote bag that puts the fun into functionality? We’ve found it. US brand Kate Spade became synonymous with quirky accessories, bold prints and colorful clothing after it launched in 1993, so the best Kate Spade bags will always be a hit. Let your bag do the talking and keep the rest of your outfit muted or tonal to allow the Kate Spade prints and colors to really sing.

Kate Spade Tote Bags—Fashion Editor's Picks

best tote bags from Radley, turquoise blue tote bag

(Image credit: Radley)

3. Radley

Reasons to buy

Playful designs 
Good choice of shapes and shades

Instantly recognizable thanks to their iconic Scottie dog logo, Radley offer a range of shapes and sizes in classic colors as well as quirky prints. Expect smooth, quality leather too. 

Zizi Hill, Director of Design at Radley, says: “On your busiest day, when you need to carry everything from a spare pair of shoes to your laptop, you deserve a handbag that is chic, spacious, and designed to last.”

Radley Tote Bags—Fashion Editor's Picks

Mailbox Longchamp tote bag in black

(Image credit: Longchamp)

4. Longchamp

Reasons to buy

Made to last
Classic designs 

Luxury accessories and French clothing brand Longchamp have been making bags since 1948. Although they make some of the best backpacks for working women, their most iconic style is the Longchamp Le Pliage Original. 

The bag has been around for 28 years and, reportedly, 30 million have been sold during that time. Durable and spacious with a minimalist style, it folds away to a smaller size making it one of the best weekend bags or great to pack away in a suitcase and pull out for a day of sightseeing.

Longchamp Tote Bags—Fashion Editor's Picks

Lily tote bag, one of the best Mulberry tote bags

(Image credit: Mulberry)

5. Mulberry

Reasons to buy

Heritage brand
High quality materials

Mulberry bags have been spotted on the arms of some of the world's most influential tastemakers, including the Duchess of Cambridge, Alexa Chung and Kate Moss. One of the most recognizable British clothing brands, their iconic Mulberry Bayswater bag achieved cult status in the early noughties, and its popularity continues today. We're also fans of the newer Lily and Portobello too. The best thing about a Mulberry tote bag? They look better with age as the leather toughens up so you can rest assured you’ll be using yours for years to come. 

Mulberry Tote Bags—Fashion Editor's Picks

marmalade tote bag from Aspinal of london

(Image credit: Aspinal of London)

6. Aspinal of London

Reasons to buy

High attention to detail 
Will last forever

If you’re looking for a bag smart enough for work, in a classic shape, or a tote with a pop of color to brighten up your outfit, then the search is over. British brand Aspinal of London prides itself on quality leather products that are so durable they will last a lifetime. Plus, you can even get your tote personalized with your initials to ensure no one ‘borrows’ your best tote bag.

Aspinal of London Tote Bags—Fashion Editor's Picks