The Best Backpacks for Men in 2021

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Whether in the office, around town, or in the great outdoors, backpacks are becoming a mandatory accessory for men. They’re practical, comfortable to carry, and come in an endless array of styles and materials.

However, carry styles are likely to differ widely nowadays, which means that even the best backpacks for men, when used for the wrong purposes, will become useless. As such, a compact everyday backpack is perfect for urban activities but may not be as practical as a weekend companion or a carry-on bag on flights around the world. In the same way, a stylish backpack with elaborate internal organization will look particularly smart on your work commute or business trip but may not find glory on the hiking trail.

To help you save an excruciating amount of time, we’ve pulled together a list with the finest, most thoughtfully designed men’s backpacks around. Efficiently categorized, our roundup has everything you need to conquer mountain peaks, the campus, or the everyday chaos in style.

Best Backpack for Men in 2021: Bellroy Transit Workpack

Best Backpack for Men in 2021

Wherever you’re headed, this versatile carryall has you covered! By far one of the most stylish men’s backpacks we’ve got our hands on, the Bellroy Transit Workpack can take on as many tasks as you do throughout the day.

Wrapped in a special water-resistant woven fabric made from recycled materials, this clamshell design fuses durable construction with streamlined aesthetics and efficient compartmentalization. There’s a separate laptop section for devices up to 16”, a soft-lined sunglasses pouch, hidden spots for wallet and water bottles, and even a stretch pocket to store your gym shoes. The full zip-around access lets you open the backpack like a suitcase for lay-flat packability, while the contoured back panel and padded shoulder straps provide superb comfort on your daily outings.

Best Travel Backpack for Men: Tropicfeel Shell

Travel Backpack for Men

Designed in Barcelona, this savvy backpack adapts to your trip with a range of thoughtful, detachable components and a smart 3-in-1 design that converts from a commute-friendly 20L daypack to a 30L weekender to a 40L all-in-one travel bag – and that’s hardly its best feature.

Dubbed the ultimate travel backpack, the Tropicfeel Shell reimagines packing with an inbuilt wardrobe system that allows you to compartmentalize all your gear like you would in your closet. Once you reach your destination, just remove and hang it from your hotel clothing rack. This easy-to-access wardrobe also acts as a compression system, helping you save up to 20% more packing space.

Crafted using sustainable, weatherproof materials and complete with a clamshell opening for easy access to contents, it easily qualifies as one of the best travel backpacks for today’s time-strapped nomads. And speaking of contents, Tropicfeel also offers a toiletry bag, a magnetic tech pouch, and a camera cube with customizable dividers so you can configure the backpack to your needs every time.

Best Men’s Backpack for the Office: Troubadour Explorer Pioneer Backpack

Best Men’s Backpack for the Office

Few men’s backpacks out there look like they belong in the boardroom quite like the Troubadour Explorer Pioneer Backpack. Crafted from a lightweight technical fabric with vegan leather trim, this polished, minimalist pack is strong, waterproof, and extremely lightweight.

A padded laptop sleeve accommodates devices up to 16 inches, while a separate shoe compartment with antimicrobial lining makes it ready for your work-to-gym routine or an overnight jaunt. The front panel opens up to reveal a well-organized “office” section with multiple sleeves and pockets, and its padded, curved shoulder straps and breathable back panel ensure all-day comfort.

Available in black and navy, this professional-looking bag transitions seamlessly from work to weekend and everywhere in between. It’s also made sustainably from 100% recycled materials, which means it not only looks good but it does good, too!

Best Sling Backpack for Men: Boundary Supply Errant Sling

Best Sling Backpack for Men

For those days when a full-blown backpack feels like too much, consider investing in a versatile sling with sufficient room to pack your essentials.

In classic Boundary Supply fashion, the Errant Sling is sustainably built using stormproof Bluesign approved materials and comes loaded with fantastic features. Details like a stability strap, reflective lashpoints, and Secure Bike Lock lash loop particularly appeal to bike commuters, while its sleek, durable design and thoughtful organizational features such as laptop/tablet compartments make this compact bag suitable for almost any EDC task.

Best Everyday Backpack for Men: Nomatic Navigator Backpack 15L

Best Everyday Backpack for Men

One of our favorite backpacks of 2021, this well-designed everyday carry offers superb organization in a sleek, compact package.

Made from durable, water-resistant materials, the Nomatic Navigator 15L features a streamlined, expandable design that shifts between 15L to 20L, plus a pocket for every imaginable item you might need throughout the day. The rear laptop compartment can hold up devices up to 16-inch and there’s also room for a 13-inch tablet.

Equally clever, a couple of external pockets hold the things you need within arm’s reach, a breathable back panel makes carrying comfortable, while reflective details throughout the bag keep you visible in low-light conditions. One of the backpack’s most unique features, however, is the water bottle compartment, which sits on the inside of the bag, maintaining its minimalist exterior intact.

Best Camera Backpack for Men: Peak Design Everyday Backpack

Best Camera Backpack for Men

Adaptable design, convenient access, and a host of thoughtful, original touches make this structured, clean-looking bag one of the finest camera backpacks on the market.

Whether you’re shooting street life in the city or rare birds in the wild, you can count on Peak Design’s Everyday Backpack to keep your gear protected and look on point. Built from recycled waterproof nylon canvas and loaded with convenient entry points, this bag stands out with its multiple access points and endlessly customizable organization.

Origami-inspired FlexFold dividers allow photographers to tailor the bag’s interior to their specific needs, while a series of stretchy, protected pockets house everything from cords to tripods. Adding to its impressive list of features are the one-handed MagLatch closure system which provides 3L of internal expansion, a versatile tuck-away strap system, and a dedicated laptop pocket & tablet/document sleeve accessible without opening the main compartment.

Best Rugged Backpack for Men: GR1 Heritage – USA – 21L

Rugged Backpack for Men

The GR1 is already one of the best backpacks ever built, especially when it comes to durability. However, for roughing it in style, we prefer Goruck’s handsome Heritage version, which has all the hallmarks of the original – including buttery smooth YKK zippers, MOLLE webbing, and a bombproof laptop compartment – but it’s crafted from military-grade duck canvas with a waxing process proven over 180 years. Plus, it comes in a carry-on-friendly size and its lay-flat clamshell design makes packing a breeze.

Combining military-grade construction with minimalist urban styling, this really is a grown man’s backpack – ready to survive decades of abuse, yet versatile enough to travel anywhere.

Best Hiking Backpack for Men: Hyperlite Mountain Gear Junction 3400

Hiking Backpack for Men

A light, weather-resistant backpack is an obvious presence on any list of hiking gear essentials, and this two-pound, 55 liters model from Hyperlite Mountain Gear, with its excellent weight-to-capacity ratio, makes an ideal candidate for any trail.

Made of tough Dyneema Composite fabric, the Junction has enough room for sleeping bags, a tent, and all your necessities while conveniently rolling down to a smaller size when the situation calls for it. It also comes with an internal hydration sleeve, sewn-on shoulder straps and hip belts, and a mesh outer pocket for easy access and drying out wet gear.

Best Designer Backpack for Men: Brunello Cucinelli Leather-Trimmed Suede Backpack

Best Designer Backpack for Men

No edit of must-have men backpacks would be complete without a luxury designer creation that will uplift their weekend outfit. Crafted from butter-soft beige suede and trimmed with rich brown leather for enhanced durability, this stylish pack from Brunello Cucinelli is the perfect companion for a day out browsing cafés and art galleries. Spacious enough to fit all your things, it comes with adjustable shoulder straps, easy-access front pockets, and well, a whole lot of old-school sophistication.

Best Laptop Backpack for Men: Away The Flap Backpack

Best Laptop Backpack for Men

For a laptop carry that strikes the right balance between style and practicality, this may be your ultimate solution. Not only does it have a sleek, contemporary look, but Away’s minimalist Flap Backpack holds a 15″ laptop and all the accessories you need for a day of work and play.

Its water-resistant nylon protects the contents from the elements and the clamshell opening allows for easy packing and access. In addition to the padded laptop sleeve, the inside sports zipper pockets, a detachable key clip, and a spot for your water bottle. Travel features include a luggage strap to attach it to a carry-on handle and a large drawstring front pocket to keep your essentials secure and within reach on the road.

Best Gym Backpack for Men: Aer Duffel Pack 3

Best Gym Backpack for Men

Aer makes some seriously cool backpacks for men, and this new ingenious hybrid is definitely one of them. As well as storing your dirty shoes and sweaty workout gear, the Duffle Pack 3 offers convenient organization for all your work essentials. You get a separate compartment featuring a padded laptop sleeve for up to 16″ devices, a slot for a tablet/documents, as well as a couple of handy pockets for cables and other small items.

This being a gym backpack, however, the interior lining is treated with an antimicrobial coating to minimize bacterial growth and odors, while the stowaway shoe section has laser-cut ventilation details. Otherwise, the bag comes with two fold-flat water bottle pockets, and its outer eco-friendly dyed polyester is durable and water-resistant.

Best Carry-On Backpack for Men: Briggs & Riley Convertible Duffle Bag Backpack

Best Carry-On Backpack for Men

Are you looking for a meticulously organized carry-on bag with solid features and an unconditional lifetime warranty? Then look no further than Briggs & Riley’s Convertible Duffle Bag Backpack.

Equipped with both shoulder and backpack straps, this bag easily transitions from duffle to backpack to keep up with your on-the-go needs. The lay-flat construction makes for easy packing, and practical features like separate organizer and a back laptop compartment ensure your belongings stay organized and in place.

At 21 x 13 x 8 in. (53 x 33 x 20.5 cm), this cool backpack fits in the overhead compartments of most major airlines and comes with lockable zipper pulls for added security. Combine all these with durable materials and a lightweight design, and you have one of the smartest carry-on backpacks on the market.

Best Mini Backpack for Men: Rains Backpack Micro

Mini Backpack for Men

For the minimalist urban explorer who’s looking for a sized-down version of their favorite backpack, this baby rucksack from Rains has everything you’ll need.

Crafted from waterproof PU, the Backpack Micro is just as durable as its bigger brothers, but with a much more compact footprint. At 5L, it only has a main compartment to store your daily essentials, but its high-quality construction and perfectly streamlined design make it the perfect EDC backpack for men who want to carry less and do more. It comes in 4 colors and is completed with a top flap, adjustable TPU backstraps, and a maritime carabiner lock.

Best College Backpack for Guys: Topo Designs Light Pack Canvas

Best College Backpack for Guys

Lightweight, durable, and tastefully understated, Topo Designs Light Pack Canvas makes a brilliant college backpack for guys who value modern features in a classic silhouette.

Built from cotton canvas with water repellent finish, it boasts a separate 15-inch laptop sleeve plus a large diagonal exterior zippered pocket for grab-and-go essentials. The large main compartment, padded shoulder straps, and PackFast attachment points make it as suitable for the campus as for hiking or traveling. It also comes in a range of cool colors to suit any style.

Best Leather Backpack for Men: Time Resistance Full Grain Leather Backpack

Best Leather Backpack for Men

Carry your belongings in style with this luxe leather option reminiscent of the ‘70s. Built to fit a 14″ laptop, the Time Resistance Full Grain Leather Backpack features a timeless, minimalist silhouette in full-grain Vachetta leather detailed with smooth YKK zippers, which makes it a classy option for guys of all ages and professions.

A grab handle and adjustable shoulder straps make carrying comfortable, and there’s also a hidden zippered pocket at the back of the bag for safely storing those items you want to keep close. Meanwhile, the fully lined interior is easy to clean and includes an organizer panel and two pockets for keeping your cell phone, keys, notebooks, and pens in order. As a bonus, you can personalize the backpack with your initials to make it one-of-a-kind, or turn it into a unique gift by engraving something special.