The 11 Best Vegan Backpacks

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by Alexa Vazquez

These days, more and more people are looking to embrace an environmentally friendly lifestyle — and that includes being more mindful about the clothes and accessories we shop for. Something as simple as choosing a backpack made from vegan materials can be an easy way to do your part, and nowadays, it’s easier than ever. The best vegan backpacks (there are plenty!) are made entirely of materials that are 100% animal-free — such as faux leather, nylon, or canvas — and boast all the quality, style, and function you’re looking for in these staple pieces.

Some of the best-quality vegan backpacks are made of vegan leather; and the most popular type of vegan leather uses polyurethane (PU) because of its durability, flexibility, and similarity to leather. Made of a synthetic material that mimics the texture of genuine leather, PU is typically wrapped around other fabrics like polyester, nylon, or rayon, and is much more affordable than the real thing. Sometimes though, polyurethane is wrapped around real leather or other animal-derived products; so when you’re shopping, be sure to look for words like “synthetic” or “vegan” — though you can rest assured that every option on this list is made of 100% vegan materials.

Other materials, like nylon and canvas, are also great vegan alternatives to genuine leather. And since they’re so durable and water-resistant, these materials are especially suitable for travel or commuter backpacks that need to withstand lots of wear and tear. No matter which material you choose, though, make sure that all components of the backpack — including the lining, straps, trim, and zipper pulls — are made from animal-friendly materials (as is the case with every backpack ahead).

For a functional and stylish everyday bag that didn’t harm any animals in the making, scroll on to shop the best vegan backpacks on Amazon.


This Convertible Vegan Leather Backpack

Finding a work backpack that fits everything and looks polished can be challenging — but this one, constructed of matte PU vegan leather, ticks both those boxes. Spacious and stylish, the backpack’s main compartment is divided into two parts: One that’s padded to keep your laptop protected (anything under 14 inches will fit perfectly), and another that has both zippered and open pockets, as well as pen loops, to keep smaller objects organized. There are also two exterior pockets — one in the front and back — to provide extra storage space, all while maintaining a streamlined silhouette. For even more style points, the adjustable and removable straps can convert this backpack into a shoulder bag or handbag.

  • Available colors: 3
  • Dimensions (length x width x height): 11 x 4.9 x 14.7 ins.


This Budget-Friendly Vegan Leather Backpack With Lots Of Hidden Pockets

One great thing about opting for vegan leather (apart from not harming animals) is the affordable price tag, and this backpack proves you don’t have to sacrifice style for savings. This medium-sized backpack is made of waterproof PU vegan leather and is available in both solid and multi-color options. The main double-zipper compartment is located in the rear to help prevent theft and keep your items safe. It’s just the right size to store essentials like a laptop up to 10 inches, planner, and small thermos, and the sleek design means it will never feel (or look) too bulky. In addition to adjustable shoulder straps, the backpack has a removable strap so you can wear it as a tote, as well.

  • Available colors: 23
  • Dimensions: 12.6 x 5.9 x 12.6 ins. (Medium, linked); 13.7 x 6.29 x 14.95 ins. (Large)


A Vintage-Inspired Nylon Backpack With Vegan Leather Details

Of course, synthetic leather isn't the only vegan material out there suitable for backpacks — this one is made of lightweight, durable nylon, lined in polyester, and embellished with vegan leather trim. This large-capacity backpack is perfect for school, work, or travel, thanks to its multiple compartments: The main one has a designated space for your laptop (which can accommodate anything up to 15 inches), and there are five other pockets throughout the bag that can fit everything from pens to a water bottle to an umbrella. The ergonomic design features a honeycomb cushioned back panel and adjustable padded shoulder straps to help prevent backaches. There’s even a USB charging port so you can keep your phone fully charged on long commutes.

  • Available colors: 3
  • Dimensions: 11.8 x 5.1 x 16.5 ins.


A Vegan Leather Mini Backpack With An Oh-So-Cute Pom Pom Charm

Mini backpacks are cute, but mini backpacks with a faux fur pom pom charm? Even cuter! Measuring less than 10 inches in height, this compact bag, made from vegan leather, offers a convenient way to hold your things while you’re out and about. The surprisingly spacious main compartment, lined with polyester, features two open pockets as well as a zippered one. Additionally, the exterior front zipper with tassel detail is great for storing your phone or lip gloss, plus there are two more small pockets on either side for extra storage. It comes in 11 candy colors, like powder blue, butter yellow, and soft pink.

  • Available colors: 11
  • Dimensions: 9.44 x 1.57 x 9 ins.


Another Faux Leather Mini Backpack You Can Wear Two Ways

Another great option if you’re looking for a tiny but mighty backpack is this faux leather one from Emperia. The 100% vegan leather is water-resistant, and the pebbled texture is a chic touch. Featuring tarnish-resistant gold hardware, this backpack has zippers galore and can easily store all your daily essentials, whether you use the dual main compartments or the two convenient pockets in the front. Wear it as a backpack, or detach the adjustable strap and hook it to the loops on either side to achieve a cross-body style.

  • Available colors: 17
  • Dimensions: 8 x 5 x 8.5 ins.


This Mid-Size Vegan Leather Backpack That’s Great For Travel

“Travel” and “chic” aren’t two words that usually go together, but this backpack totally changes that. This is made of soft PU faux leather, outfitted with silver hardware, and features black satin lining, all of which are durable enough to stand up to long commutes. There are several pockets to keep your things organized and easy to find, including two in the front, one on each side (ideal for a small umbrella or water bottle), and four inside the large primary compartment, which can accommodate laptops up to 14 inches. An anti-theft pocket along the back keeps valuables, like your wallet or passport, extra-safe. Even after filling it up, this backpack is still the perfect size to slide underneath a bus, train, or airplane seat.

  • Available colors: 7
  • Dimensions: 12.99 x 3 x 8.1 ins.


This Popular Waterproof Nylon Backpack

There’s nothing worse than getting rained and worrying about ruining your bag (and everything inside of it); but with this vegan waterproof backpack, you won’t have to worry about that anymore. Constructed of a tear-proof yet lightweight nylon fabric that repels dirt and water, this backpack is made with durable metal hardware reinforced with super-strong stitching. The main compartment features four pockets of varying sizes, and the outside features one pocket on each side (great for keeping your umbrella handy), as well as a zippered front pocket. It also has a removable strap and a top handle, so you can wear it as a tote bag, too. With a 4.5-star overall rating and over 2,200 glowing, five-star ratings and reviews, this is a popular pick on Amazon.

  • Available colors: 20
  • Dimensions: 12.99 x 5.9 x 13.38 (Medium, linked); 13.78 x 6.7 x 14.17 (Large)


This Retro-Chic Vegan Rucksack

Made of faux leather, this water and stain-resistant backpack is both functional and fashionable. The padded main compartment is great for storing your laptop (it fits computers up to 14 inches), notebooks, or textbooks, and the adjustable straps and two magnetic closures on the sides allow you to expand the size to create extra room. There are also are two anti-theft pockets in the back, which are great for storing important items like your phone or wallet. The dual-buckle closures, top handle, and naturally worn-looking material add to the bag’s retro feel.

  • Available colors: 4
  • Dimensions: 11 x 3.9 x 14.3 ins.


This Canvas Vegan Computer Bag With Tons Of Rave Reviews

With over 20,000 Amazon ratings and 4.8-star overall rating, this backpack is another great vegan option that can easily store all your daily essentials and more. Made of durable, water-repellent canvas polyester with faux leather handles, it has a unique open-mouth design that allows you to easily see all your stuff at once when unzipped, and it’s reinforced with metal frames to maintain its shape. Inside, there’s a padded sleeve that can accommodate laptops up to 15.6 inches, two small interior pockets, and a slot for notebooks or a tablet, while the zippered exterior pocket provides a handy spot for your phone. Other features include a super convenient luggage strap, padded back panel and shoulder straps to keep your back comfortable, and a charging port to hold a portable battery.

  • Available colors: 3
  • Dimensions: 11.15 x 7.5 x 16.9 ins.


A Sturdy Backpack From An Iconic Brand

Whether you’re headed to work, school, or the airport, this highly rated Herschel backpack will neatly store whatever you need for the day ahead, whether it's textbooks or a change of clothes. The canvas-like exterior is crafted with polyester and nylon, and features a drawstring opening with magnetic closures as well as a zippered front pocket. The inside, lined with Herschel’s signature red and white striped fabric, contains a padded, fleece-lined laptop sleeve that can store devices up to 15 inches, as well as a smaller pocket for miscellaneous items. The synthetic leather buckles and label patch stitched to the front are part of the brand’s iconic design.

  • Available colors: 60
  • Dimensions: 16 x 10.75 ins. (height x width; Mid-Volume, linked); 19.25 x 11.25 ins. (Classic)


An Incredibly Chic Backpack From A 100% Vegan & Sustainable Brand

This vegan leather backpack from the 100% vegan and sustainable brand Matt & Nat proves that animal-friendly materials can be incredibly chic. This outside of this classically designed bag is made from polyvinyl butyral, a sturdy synthetic material, while the inside is lined with recycled nylon. Underneath the front flap is a drawstring closure, which is ideal if you happen to be a chronic over-packer. It’s just large enough to fit the essentials — like a tablet, a Hydroflask, or even a change of clothes — but still small enough that you won’t feel like you’re back in grade school. This backpack also features a zipper pouch on the exterior and interior, a smartphone pocket, and adjustable straps.

  • Available colors: 1
  • Dimensions: 9.06 x 9 ins. x 12.2 ins.