12 Different Types Of Handbags For Women

Find the style that suits your personality and complements your needs the most.

Reviewed by Paola Farina, Personal Stylist Paola Farina Paola FarinaPersonal Stylist linkedin_iconinsta_icon
Written by , MSc Pratima Ati MSc
Edited by , MA (English Literature) Madhumati Chowdhury MA (English Literature) Experience: 7 years
Fact-checked by , MA (English & Literature), Certified Style & Image Consultant Srijita De MA (English & Literature), Certified Style & Image Consultant Experience: 2 years

If you are in love with handbags and cannot go by a day without carrying them along, you should know about all the different types of these handbags that are available. Do not worry when we are here to help. In this article, we are going to introduce you to all the cool types of handbags that you can choose from. With umpteen options in place, you will be able to pick handbags based on your very many requirements. So, scroll down and read this piece to learn more about different handbags for women.

Ace The Look
  • Occasion: A tote or satchel bag is suitable for casual outings, whereas a clutch or a small crossbody bag looks good for formal events.
  • Material: Leather is versatile and durable, but needs regular maintenance. While polyester is light and easier to maintain but not as durable as leather.
  • Bag Style: Pick one depending on your requirement. For running errands, carry a hobo or shoulder bag with multiple compartments. Pick a minaudière as an accessory to dial up the glam quotient for night parties.
  • Brand: Invest in a reputed brand’s handbag or purse as it promises both style and quality.

12 Best Types Of Handbags And Wallets For Women

1. Shoulder Bag

The shoulder bag or the everyday bag is the most functional bag of them all. And, every brand has its own variants, which only makes it more difficult to resist buying multiple ones from different brands. But, we are not complaining, are we? The tote and shopper bag are popular types of shoulder bags. They are big and fit in all your bare necessities, because – let’s face it – we practically carry a mini supermarket anyway. Just do it in style.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Pair printed shoulder bags with neutral basics to elevate your look without going over-the-top. For a more “out-there” and trendy look, pick shoulder bags in bright colors and wear them with outfits in complementary/contrasting colors.

 2. Satchel

Satchels are perfect for working women – they hit the sweet spot between being an everyday handbag and a laptop bag. With this, you don’t have to carry two bags. It can fit in all your basics, plus your gadgets too. Uber-popular messenger bags, doctor bags, and camera bags are types of satchels. You can look for top handle variants for a stylish work look. But remember to invest in a bag that is sturdy and of good quality – these need to last longer, so you cannot afford anything sloppy!

3. Sling Bag

Sling bag
Image: Shutterstock

The sling bag or crossbody bag is functional, comfortable, and stylish. It’s perfect for shopping, running errands, and traveling. If you are with kids, a sling bag is just perfect! And these come in all sizes. A popular saddlebag is a curved crossbody bag attached to a horse saddle. Functional, chic, and an everyday essential.

4. Quilted Bag

Quilted bag
Image: myntra.com

Quilted bags are considered iconic, and there are some chic branded ones that people dream of buying. If you have been thinking of investing in a bag and do not own one of these, go for it. Chanel, Prada, and Hermes have some of the best-quilted bag options and an investment like this will go a long way. Bags like these add to your style statement and amp up your overall look.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Quilted bags are ideal for the colder months as they pair best with blazers, overcoats, oversized sweaters, turtlenecks, biker jackets, and even cardigans.

5. Clutch

Image: Shutterstock

The clutch or ‘A Day Clutch’ is simply classy, elegant, and pure sophistication, because we cannot sport a huge bag when we are all dressed up for an event or a party. The only problem some people like me have is not being able to decide what to carry and what to leave out but, hey, it’s worth it. However, if you are someone who just cannot do with a small clutch, there are some brands that offer clutches with compartments and thus give you more space than the normal ones. Look for fashionable clutch styles like the envelope bag. But, every girl needs a clutch for sure!

6. Minaudiere

Image: Instagram @reverejewels

Minaudiere is a clutch encrusted with colored stones, gems, pearls, etc., and oozes grandeur. So, when you have a really special event, cocktail party, wedding or an evening party to attend, you should carry a Minaudiere instead of a clutch. And, for those special days, we absolutely need a Minaudiere.

7. Hobo Bag

Hobo bag
Image: Instagram @zelk.cl

Hobo is a shoulder style bag but not as wide. The crescent shape makes the bag equal parts formal and casual. If you are bored with your regular totes, backpack, and shoulder bags, pick up the Hobo – it will be an exciting addition to your collection. If you are looking for a similar unstructured bag with wide straps a slouch might work as well.

8. Wristlet

Image: Shutterstock

Wristlets are just like your wallets, but are so much more functional and comfortable to carry. Coach and Louis Vuitton have some fancy and elegant looking wristlets. They have enough space to hold your card, cash, and phone too, plus you can carry it on the wrist and be palms free. You can also look for the trendy accordion bag that has pleats resembling the instrument.

9. Beach Bag

Beach bag
Image: Instagram @sunovabeachbelize

You need a bag for your vacation, period. I know men diss this, but whatever it is they say, don’t pay attention. Buy a jute or a straw basket bag – it is both waterproof and stylish, plus it can fit in all your stuff when you decide to take a dip in the ocean. From your lunch to garments – you can store a picnic inside these bags! This beach bag can also double up as a diaper bag if you have a baby. Get one already.

10. Wallet

Image: Shutterstock

Wallet, or a purse as some call it, is an essential part of a girl’s handbag. While there are different types of purses, it is quite personal to each of us. You can make quite a statement with this, so pick up something accordingly.

11. Bucket Handbag

Bucket handbag for women
Image: Shutterstock

A bucket bag is a combination of style and practicality. As the name suggests, the bag is loved for its spaciousness, wide opening, good depth, and tall sides. The first bucket bag was created by Louis Vuitton in 1932 to carry 5 bottles of champagne. It is the perfect choice for women on the go who find shoulder handbags limiting in terms of space.

12. Barrel Handbag

Barrel handbag design for women
Image: Shutterstock

The bag is characterized by its oblong shape and usually has a top strap to be carried with the top handle. It is like a miniature version of the duffle bag. Due to their shape and size, they are great as a travel bag for a quick weekend getaway or day trip. Small-size barrel bags with a rigid structure give a sophisticated look when paired with an evening dress.

Apart from these popular bags, you can also check out:

  • Drawstring Bags: An adjustable bag that cinches with the help of strings.
  • Duffel Bags: A cylindrical over-the-shoulder bag generally used for travel (weekender bag) or storing gym-based stuff (bowling bags).
  • Waist Bags: These include fanny packs and belt bags.
  • Frame Bags: These are triangular bags attached to bikes and cycles.

Here are some tips that will help you pick the best handbag!

Tips To Choose A Good Handbag

  1. Always go for a good quality handbag. The brand is not essential as the quality. invest your money in a value model that will last for a long time.
  2. Paola Farina, Personal Stylist, says, “If you have no bags, my advice is to choose a classic model in a neutral color, so it will never go out of fashion, and you can combine it with different outfits.”
  3. Just like jewels, bags must also be appropriate for the occasion. You cannot take an everyday bag to a wedding, and neither can you replace a work bag with a clutch.
  4. If you carry multiple things with you, do not fill your bag to the brim. Choose a shoulder bag to store important things and a rigid bag for your laptop and working documents.

Infographic: Fab 5 Handbags You May Have In The Wardrobe

Ladies and their obsession with bags is not a secret in the fashion world. Thousands of brands come up with different handbags with a single compartment or multiple compartments to be a necessity in a woman’s life. There are multiple varieties of handbags with different names to attract the attention of ladies and confuse men. A woman’s wardrobe must have at least 3 different types of bags for any occasion, workplace, or supermarket visits.

Check out the infographic below to know the fab 5 handbags for women that you may have in the wardrobe for different purposes. These can enhance your look to stand out in the crowd effortlessly.

fab 5 handbags you may have in the wardrobe (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Handbags are must-have items in every fashionista’s wardrobe. The pockets in our clothing are useless, and we have a lot of stuff to carry at all times. Handbags are not just efficient storage accessories, but they could also contribute to your look and help you make your unique style statement. This article gives a good insight into the different types of handbags available on the market; maybe you will find your favorite type or brand of handbag in the above list. Do not shy away from experimenting!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the most popular type of handbag?

A cross-body bag is the most popular type of handbag among women.

What is trending in handbags?

Knitted bags, bucket bags, embellished and sparkly party bags, supersized tote bags, rounded silhouette bags, structured bags, clutches, and bags in tan shades are in the trend.

What is a lady handbag called?

A woman’s handbag can also be referred to as a purse.

Key Takeaways

  • Different types of handbags offer different utilities and aesthetics.
  • The classic shoulder bag is suitable for everyday use as it allows you to carry a lot of stuff.
  • Satchel bags come in different sizes. They are structured and look sophisticated and polished.
  • A clutch is a small purse that is meant for formal events where one may not need much stuff.
types of handbags_illustration

Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

Banner Image Credits: Instagram

Discover 35 different types of bags and their names! From backpacks to totes, learn the different styles and what they’re called in this video so you can pick what you love.

Paola Farina

Paola FarinaPersonal Stylist

Paola Farina is a personal and event stylist and a certified image consultant with 4 years of experience. She collaborates with individuals and companies. After graduating from classical studies, she won a scholarship from Image Fashion & Communication, the first Italian institute for training professional editors and stylists. In 2018, she launched Paola Farina Styling, a company that specialized in...read full bio

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