School Bag Designs and Style Trends

Choosing a school bag for your child appears straightforward at first glance. But as you carefully consider the different criteria, then the task becomes serious. The variety of bag types, designs, sizes, colors, styles and brands available in the market are overwhelming; but you can narrow down your choices step by step until you arrive at the best choice.

The choice normally depends on many factors like age, grade level, gender and personality of the user. Why not, the purchase is intended to satisfy not just their need to carry their school stuff but also to express their fashion sense and display their current interests that are usually incorporated in the overall bag design. In this case, we have to balance fashion with function. Load to be carried is of utmost importance in choosing the bag type for ergonomic reasons. This we found out from our school kids that we shared in a blog about their new school.


Practical considerations like durability and affordability are also important components of the decision-making process.  Look for good workmanship and superb quality of zippers, rollers, fabrics and other materials to get your money’s worth. 

Below are some bag types, designs and descriptions to help you with your mission of finding the most appropriate school bag for your child.


Backpack is the most popular style used by students. It has two adjustable straps on the back, one for each shoulder. There are usually several compartments accessed by zippers. It has also pockets for smaller things to better organize school materials and snacks too. Backpack allows your child to carry more stuff but caution must be practiced in this regard.

The weight of the backpack should be limited to 10% of the child’s body weight as recommended by many studies. Carrying more than 10% of a child’s weight will risk him/her of having chronic, low-level trauma and chronic shoulder, neck and back pain. Backpack with wide padded straps and padded waist belt help distribute the weight evenly when worn properly. Using both straps and the waist belt helps reduce the risk of injury to the shoulders, neck and lower back.

For smaller kids who do not need to carry lots of stuff in school, small backpacks shaped like their favorite animal or designed with their favorite cartoon character will look cute on them and will entice them to go to school. But then, again, if the child needs to carry lots of school stuff (more than 10% of his/her body weight), then a trolley bag or a trolley backpack is more appropriate (see below).

Sling and Messenger Bags

These two bags are similar except that the sling bag is often smaller. These are single strap bags and are therefore worn in one shoulder. The adjustable strap winds around the chest while the bag usually rests on the lower back.

Classically, a large flap folds over the front. It has many shapes and designs and is increasingly becoming an urban fashion icon. Looking casual and trendy at the same time, messenger bags may outdo backpacks in terms of popularity as a school bag among teeners and even adults.

Though both genders use sling bags, these were originally made for and used by men and has been referred as “men’s purse.” College and high school students are becoming fond of this bag type because it is both fashionable and functional, especially to those who commute by bicycles. It allows them to carry a reasonable load of school materials and other bulky items like backpack but in contrast, most sling/ messenger bags provide better accessibility to the contents even while being worn because it lies on the body side.

Trolley Bags

When school requires the students to bring lots of books and other materials everyday and when no personal lockers are provided to temporarily store school stuff that do not need to be brought home, then a trolley bag comes in handy. These bags are normally more expensive because they are designed to be more durable, but the convenience it offers to your kid will always be worth your money. There are styles that can also be worn as backpacks (backpack trolley) and there is a box-type trolley where your child can sit on when needed (i.e. waiting for the school bus).

Though your little ones are usually not required to bring many things, rolling backpacks are also available for their convenience and just for the fun of pushing and pulling.

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stinkyfart 4 years ago


Richard 22 months ago

Review by Yet M. Chu for Rating: I got this backpack few weeks ago and its ptrtey good so far. For some reasons this one (which is red) is cheaper then the black one, even though they are the same backpack expect for the color differences. I'm guessing because more people are into black color backpack. Anyways, I'm just going to put the bad and the good about this backpack.GOOD-This can fit a 15.4 laptop, anything bigger than 15.4 will not fit.-Well made, it will last for a long time.-Lot's of small protected pocket for Ipod, PSP, HardDrive..etc.-Feels good when its placed on your back, it's design to have air flow between your back and the backpack. This way you will not have a wet spot on your back.-Cheap Bad-It's kinda small in size, you can fit a laptop and few binders and maybe 2 books. That is about it, there are spaces but its more for small items. There are bigger version of SwissGear backpack, but it cost more.Overall, this is a great backpack for it's price. If I would buy another one in the future I would still chose SwissGear.Hope this help, thanks for reading.

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