15 Best Leather Messenger Bags for Stylish, Successful Men

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In A Hurry? Our Top Picks:

  1. Best Quality Leather: Kodiak Sitka Leather Messenger
  2. Ethically Made: Nisolo Loreto Leather Messenger Bag
  3. Best for Business Travelers: Leatherology Laptop Messenger Bag
  4. Most Affordable: Kenneth Cole Reaction Risky Business Leather Messenger Bag

Hard-working men such as yourself deserve a well-crafted and authentic leather messenger bag that supports your successful, sophisticated style.

Unlike nylon or cloth messenger bags that can look amateur, and in some instances, embarrassing, a leather messenger bag boldly states that you are on a focused, upward trajectory in your life.

In this guide, we will serve you up a wide array of leather messenger bags that have been meticulously crafted, strike a nice balance between both vintage and modern style, and are built to last you for decades – such as the Kodiak Sitka Leather Messenger Bag we found for you.

Additionally, we also wanted to provide you with a list of considerations so you can quickly and confidently identify the right bag to meet your expectations.

RankLeather Messenger BagBest For
1Kodiak Sitka Leather MessengerQuality Leather
2Nisolo Loreto Leather Messenger BagEthically Made
3Leatherology Laptop Messenger BagBusiness Travelers
4Satchel & Page Leather MailbagFull-Grain Leather
5Wilson Leather New York Leather MessengerInterviewing
6Kenneth Cole Reaction Risky Business Leather Messenger BagAffordable
7Visconti Soft Leather Messenger BagPolished Leather
8Samsonite Laptop Messenger BagFormal Wear
9S-ZONE Men’s Leather Business BriefcaseUtilitarian
10Berchirly Vintage Messenger BagFaux Leather
11Fossil Defender Leather Messenger BagSlim Profile
12Frye Logan Messenger BagLuxury
13Kattee Men’s Leather Messenger BagCommuting
14Komal’s Vintage Leather Messenger BagVintage Look
15Slim Leather Messenger BagBudget Pick

Here is the List of the 15 Best Leather Messenger Bags 

1. Kodiak Sitka Leather Messenger

Your Executive Summary

  • Rustic design elevates your casual, semi-formal style.
  • Made from top-grain leather.
  • Can be worn as a messenger or hand-carried.
  • Detailed with quality brass hardware + YKK zipper.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

Started from a successful Kickstarter campaign by Kodiak founder Jared Morse (source), you can see all the hard work and fine craftsmanship that has gone into making this bag – and why it is so popular among men.  

The messenger bag is crafted from high-quality top-grain leather.  You can expect the top-grain leather to develop a nice, smooth patina.  Secondly, given the reliance on this leather type, you can expect it to withstand a lot of abuse and is a great companion that will serve you well no matter where your adventures take you.

On the interior, you will find detailed leather organizational pockets and a soft lining.  If you plan on getting work done on your next adventure, the padded laptop sleeve will protect your device.  

Priced well given the high quality of the leather.

Other Features You Should Know About

  • Two push clips keep your valuables secured.
  • Camera padded insert available separately for shutterbugs.

Our Humble Opinion

If you are a rugged outdoorsman that loves timeless and vintage style, then the Kodiak Sitka Leather Messenger should be a top consideration.  We think you will love the top-notch leather that is designed to last a lifetime.  

2. Nisolo Loreto Leather Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Made from quality vegetable-tanned leather.
  • Handmade by artisans in Mexico.
  • Simple, yet functional interior pockets.
  • Fits up to 16″ laptops.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

Nisolo is known for its quality crafted leather goods – particularly their men’s Chelsea boots we recently reviewed here and the Loreto Leather Messenger Bag. Both carry on a high level of craftsmanship.

This bag is made from vegetable-tanned leather that should last a lifetime.

With a minimalist and streamlined exterior, the Loreto Messenger Bag rarely looks out of place and is well-suited whether you are leading a boardroom meeting, heading for an interview, or you are using it as a smart casual accessory.  Simply put, the versatility is unmatched.

This bag has a padded interior lining that will protect all the hard work you have stored on your laptop or tablet from a sudden impact.   

With smaller organizational pouches to store your phone, water bottle, pen, keys, etc. everything is easily accessible.

Closed by a single brass stem, you can open and close this with only one hand.

Lastly, a note about their production method:

Unlike other fashion companies that outsource and subcontract their production to other nameless factories, Nisolo owns their factory.  

This means that they control the production process and adjust it accordingly to make the best leather bag for you.  Secondly, their frontline workers at the factory earn a livable wage.  It’s truly a win-win scenario.

Other Features You Should Know About

  • The shoulder strap is adjustable and includes a weight displacement pad.
  • Single exterior pocket for quick access to important documents.

Our Humble Opinion

If you care about quality craftsmanship and want a bag that is versatile and will make you feel like you are in charge, then we think you should consider adding this to the top of your list.  

3. Leatherology Laptop Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Made from full-grain leather.
  • Perfect for business travelers as it can slide onto a carry-on luggage handle.
  • Minimalist, timeless, yet highly functional design.
  • Available in three professional-looking colors.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

Whether you are a high-powered business executive or a junior associate, the Leatherology Laptop Messenger Bag makes a statement that demonstrates you are confident and in command.

 This bag has a minimalist exterior, is versatile, and can be easily dressed up or down.  Additionally, the sleek and fine craftsmanship works well with your busy lifestyle.

On the interior, you can expect to find the important details including a spot for your laptop, phone, charger, wallet, passport, and other important gear.

Able to be monogrammed with your initials, it is a subtle way to demonstrate the respect you have earned.

The bag is made from full-grain leather, the best quality of leather money can buy.

It’s currently available in three colors including black, brown, and tan.

Other Features You Should Know About

  • Nickel hardware creates a subtle, striking contrast.
  • Zippered compart to keep valuables secure.
  • Flap closure provides a streamlined, minimalist appearance.

Our Humble Opinion

If you demand the best quality leather and want a ‘buy-it-for-life’ purchase, then you need to take a serious look at this messenger bag – especially if you like minimalist design aesthetics and quality craftsmanship.  Perfect for the office, the timeless look will be a trusted accessory supporting your successful career.

4. Satchel & Page Leather Mailbag

Your Executive Summary

  • Constructed from vegetable-tanned full-grain leather.
  • Designed to last a lifetime.
  • Made in Italy.
  • Backed by a lifetime warranty.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

Inspired by U.S. Postal Workers in the early 1900s, the Satchel & Page Leather Mailbag is crafted from durable and quality full-grain leather that will last a lifetime.

Whether you are using this as a commuting or adventure bag, you can expect the leather to withstand plenty of abuse, develop character on the surface, and have a nice, soft patina as it ages.  

With buckle closure, this bag will keep your gear confidently secured.

For added comfort, the shoulder pad has a leather stuffing that will rest easily on your shoulder.  Well-crafted brass fittings detail the bag for a more rustic and vintage look.

For the interior, you will find spaces for all the essentials including a laptop sleeve, business cards, pens, etc. 

To note, the laptop sleeve on this bag contains a secondary interior strap for added security.

Given that this bag is full-grain leather, it will take some time to break-in.

The style is versatile and can be used for either casual or formal use.

Other Features You Should Know About

  • Fits up to a 16″ laptop.
  • Back pocket allows for quick access to important documents.
  • Luggage connector sold separately.

Our Humble Opinion

If craftsmanship and durability are most important to you, then the full-grain leather on this messenger bag will be welcomed. It is one of the few bags out there that will never falter wherever your adventures take you thanks to the quality craftsmanship.

5. Wilson Leather New York Leather Messenger

Your Executive Summary

  • Stylish, simple design will give you a more professional look.
  • Secure buckle closure keeps your valuables contained.
  • Several interior compartments for quick, easy access.
  • A soft-lined interior that contains a padded laptop sleeve.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

The Wilson Leather New York Rugged Portfolio Brief is a great leather messenger to wear to your high-powered business meetings and job interview as it presents well.

The most notable drawback to this messenger bag is the leather itself.  Made from genuine leather, it won’t last nearly as long as other options reviewed.  If worn for business or commuting, then you can expect it to last you a few years before it shows signs of wear due to your busy life.

At approximately 15.5″ wide x 11.5″ high, any laptop should slide in easily.  Even longer legal documents can also fit in.

Other Features You Should Know About

  • Leather-wrapped handle for added versatility.
  • Shoulder strap has a leather pad for added comfort.

Our Humble Opinion

The style is slick and will allow you to command the respect from your peers.  While not a bag that is designed to last a lifetime, it should effortlessly fit into your important and busy lifestyle.

6. Kenneth Cole Reaction Risky Business Leather Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Available in three stylish colors.
  • Priced aggressively compared to other full-grain leather messenger bags.
  • The minimalist design makes it a semi-formal to formal choice.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

Kenneth Cole is a trusted brand for many men.  

While it certainly may not have the same artistic flair as other bags on the market, you won’t be disappointed with the functional aspects of a messenger bag. 

It features a convertible strap, interior pockets, and a roomy lined main compartment.

The silky lined interior is partitioned to have a slim zippered pocket on the side, and two slim pockets just under the flap for small, thin belongings. The main compartment can hold your tablet, phone, business papers, and more. There is also an open pocket on the back of this bag for items you may need direct and easy access to. 

The shape of the bag won’t be compromised with things you put inside this bag, ensuring that you have a great looking item for years.

This bag features an extendable shoulder strap that is 60” at full length.  

However, the shoulder strap cannot be removed.

The front closures are snaps, which are not the most secure, but they do hold the flap down in especially windy weather and are handy for quickly opening and closing if you need to get something out in a hurry.

Other Features You Should Know

  • A leather handle makes it easier to carry if heavy or fatigued.
  • Made in China.
  • Should be able to easily fit most laptops.

Our Humble Opinion

If you are watching your bottom line yet want a messenger bag that will last you for years, then this bag by Kenneth Cole will make perfect sense.  Full-grain leather is often not seen at this price point thus making it a steal.

7. Visconti Soft Leather Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Polished leather suited well for businessmen.
  • Minimalist, timeless design.
  • Effortless flap magnetic closure.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

If you are looking for a potential leather messenger bag that has a minimalist attitude but something that you will likely own for life and potentially pass down to the next generation – then you simply can’t beat this leather bag by Visconti. 

With its sleek, yet incredibly classic looking antique design, this leather bag can work for just about any occasion. Whether you are biking to work or have an interview at a Fortune 500 company, it is both functional and classy.

Unlike other messenger bags reviewed, this is simply a leather outer paired with a cloth lining on the interior. Therefore, if you intend to use this as a bag to carry your laptop or tablet, then you may also want to use a laptop sleeve in tandem for maximum protection.

Noticeably absent from the front of the bag is any bulky buckles or clasps. Instead, the Visconti leather bag relies on strong magnets to keep the outer flap closed at all times – which can make access to your belongings easy. 

On the backside of the bag is a thin pocket that should also be able to store your essentials (i.e. docs, notes, etc) for easy access.

Our Humble Opinion

While not as secure as other bags, this bag should be a top pick if you want quality and minimalist style.  The leather quality is good and you should expect it to develop a nice patina with time.

8. Samsonite Laptop Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Best for semi-formal to formal styles.
  • Backed by a 3-year warranty.
  • Made in China.
  • Relies on genuine leather – making it affordably priced.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

This leather messenger bag from Samsonite is versatile and should fit just about any of your needs.  Whether you are in a business or casual environment, this bag can easily work in both instances. 

When it comes to carrying the bag, you have two primary options – either via a canvas shoulder strap or by hand carrying it with the leather-wrapped handle that is on the top.

When accessing the bag, all your gear is secured with the two buckles. Underneath the leather straps, you will find that you can easily open up the bag by simply pressing down on the clasp.

On the inside, there are several compartments for both easy storage and accessibility. As for max laptop size, it can hold up to a 15.6″ laptop.

This messenger bag does come in two colors: black and brown.

Being that this is constructed of genuine leather, it’s not particularly waterproof and you should experience scuffs and normal wear and tear with daily use.  Expect it to last you a few years before it needs to be replaced.

Travelers take note: this bag cannot slide onto a carry-on luggage handle.

Other Features You Should Know

  • Removable shoulder strap converts this into a nice briefcase.
  • Antique brass hardware provides a nice vintage look.

Our Humble Opinion

This bag is best for those men on a restricted budget that haven’t quite gotten that big raise yet to justify splurging on the other bags reviewed.  While the pay raise is assuredly in your future, the nice presentation of this bag will elevate your business style.

9. S-ZONE Men’s Leather Business Briefcase

Your Executive Summary

  • Has a nice utilitarian, vintage look.
  • One of the most secure bags (double clasp closure + zip main compartment).
  • Affordably priced.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

This leather messenger bag by S-ZONE is good if you are seeking a messenger bag that is intended for casual to semi-formal use thanks to its vintage, rustic look.

Relying on a dual clasp design, it will keep your items secure – but one that does require some work on your behalf to open.

Should you overload this bag with your devices, books, etc. you can carry it via the leather-reinforced handle.  Or if you want a briefcase look to this bag, you can simply detach the shoulder strap.

With its three external compartments matched by the three internal ones, every single piece of your gear should be able to easily find its home in any one of the six compartments.

The zip back compartment provides easy access to your important documents or phone.

You can easily store a laptop (up to 14″) within the bag.

Available in two colors: brown and dark brown.

Other Features You Should Know

  • Made from crazy horse leather.
  • Uncertain country of origin (likely China).

Our Humble Opinion

We think the S-ZONE bag is good if you want a bag that will keep your devices and documents extremely secure.  With the double clasp and zip closure, prying hands won’t get in here easily.  While priced affordably, there are questions around the country of origin and quality of the leather.  

10. Berchirly Vintage Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Faux leather is good if you prefer animal-free products.
  • Not as durable or meticulously crafted as other bags reviewed.
  • Extremely affordable (sub $50 price point).

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

This is one of the best affordable leather messenger bags that we reviewed making it good for men on a tight budget.

With a nice minimalist structure, the bag will present nicely and will not look cheap or inferior in any way.  

As for utility, along the backside of the bag you will find a zip pouch that should be able to safely store your essentials such as your phone, keys, and wallet. Within the main compartment, which is enclosed by two magnetic buttons, you can store all or your gear. 

At 4″ deep, this bag isn’t bulky or cumbersome to carry.  If you travel frequently via bike or just simply walking, the smaller design of this bag should easily complement your busy lifestyle.

Our Humble Opinion

If you don’t like the thought of using animal hide in a messenger bag, then this is a cruelty-free alternative.  While not as durable as others reviewed as it will likely need to be replaced in a year or two, it does present well.

11. Fossil Defender Leather Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Made from genuine leather.
  • Secured by push locks.
  • 2″ width creates a slim, professional look.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

While known primarily for their watches, Fossil does make a batch of stylish leather messenger bags worth considering.

Intended to be worn for only a few years at most, this bag has all the details that you are likely looking for including a buckle flap closure, fabric-lined interior, and an adjustable shoulder strap.

Able to accommodate up to 13″ laptops, it is a bit more modest and compact compared to other bags reviewed.

With brass-colored hardware, it complements the warm colors of the leather nicely.  

Available in either brown or a two-tone black and brown accent – this bag can work for casual to formal settings.

The reliance on genuine leather is a shortcoming given the price commanded for this bag.

Other Features You Should Know

  • Includes a leather-wrapped top handle.
  • Features a back pocket for quick access.
  • Reinforced leather bottom.

Our Humble Opinion

The style of this bag is top-notch.  The subtle brass-colored hardware when matched with the tan cowhide gives it a uniquely rustic yet modern look that will turn heads.  However, the biggest drawback is the leather quality.  Expect this bag to last you a few years before showing signs of wear.

12. Frye Logan Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Available in four colors.
  • Made from quality Italian leather.
  • Magnetic snap closure offers convenience.
  • An expensive, well-made, bag.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

Relying on a rich Italian leather, the Frye Logan Messenger Bag is one that is intended to not only last your lifetime but also be an heirloom piece where your future generations can remember how successful you were for the family.

With a timeless design, this well-crafted bag from the highly respected Frye is well-suited for those men who want perfection in the goods that they purchase.

The subtle stitching throughout looks nice.  A dual leather-strap reinforcement on the bottom ensures that the bag will never falter on your adventures.

Available in four distinct colors, you can select the perfect one to match your unique style.

If you are a utilitarian-minded man, then you may find the lack of several organizational pockets disappointing.  With no exterior pockets, you must open the magnetically-sealed flap every time to get your gear.

On the inside, you are met with a large fabric-lined main compartment coupled with a few organizational pouches and a zippered pocket.

Frye makes a few other leather messenger bags in different styles.

Other Features You Should Know

  • Includes a dust bag for non-seasonal storage.
  • Backed by a 1-year warranty.

Our Humble Opinion

If you want a bag that has been meticulously made and are willing to pay a premium for such quality, then consider the Frye Logan Messenger Bag.  It’s a beautiful bag that will last you a lifetime.

13. Kattee Men’s Leather Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Best for commuting and business meetings.
  • Made in China.
  • Can fit a 14″ laptop.
  • Not the best leather quality.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

This leather messenger bag by Kattee has a distinct style that is a blend between rugged and formal. 

With its scratch-prone genuine leather exterior, this bag will show all the marks of your future adventures and should look quite nice with time.  

The design of the bag is very similar to the higher priced bags we reviewed and is available for just a fraction of the price (likely due to the reliance on genuine leather and that it’s made in China). 

Its front two buckle clasp design along with a reinforced hybrid leather/cloth strap and handle will make it easy to carry and access when in transit.

Within the bag rests two main compartments for easy segregation of your gear with a zipper pouch in the middle. This will allow you to store important A4 standard-sized documents. The Kattee Men’s bag should be able to sufficiently fit not only a 14″ laptop but also a tablet and power adapter, if necessary.

Other Features You Should Know

  • Made from Crazy Horse genuine leather.

Our Humble Opinion

Relatively speaking, this is a cheap leather messenger bag that looks stylish.  While not nearly as well-made as other brands reviewed, it should be considered by those men looking for an upgrade in their style.

14. Komal’s Vintage Leather Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Made from full-grain leather.
  • Can hold up to a 17″ laptop.
  • Made in India.
  • Contains several internal compartments.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

This handmade bag is crafted from durable and high-quality full-grain leather. Immediately upon looking at this bag, you will notice that it evokes a classic design from a bygone era. 

The antique brass-colored clasps only further the vintage look.

While the design is rather bulky, especially when compared to others, you can store an ample amount of gear within the bag. In fact, you should be able to fit a full-sized 17″ laptop within its main compartment.

The design of this bag is best suited for casual or semi-formal wear.

Other Features You Should Know

  • Leather-wrapped top handle.
  • Does not contain padded inserts.

Our Humble Opinion

If you love the rustic, vintage look, then it doesn’t get any better than this.  Made from full-grain leather, this bag will only look better as it becomes a trusted companion on your many future adventures.

15. Slim Leather Messenger Bag

Your Executive Summary

  • Extremely affordable.
  • Made from genuine leather.
  • Relatively unknown brand.
  • Slim shoulder strap may cause discomfort if overloaded.

Our Unbiased, Trusted Review

Priced under $40, this is a great pick if you are just getting started in your career or are going on your first interview.

With a simple design, it provides a streamlined appearance that will pair well with either a smart-casual look or even a suit and tie.

While absent of any padded inserts (a padded laptop sleeve should be considered), it can carry quite a bit of gear thanks to the roomy main compartment.

To access the main compartment, the top flap is secured by two magnetic fittings that should stay secure while in transit.

Our Humble Opinion

If you are watching your budget closely, yet want to upgrade from a nylon messenger bag or backpack, then this one can work.  Made from genuine leather, it isn’t the finest quality – but that’s completely okay.

Leather Messenger Bag Buying Guide

1. Style

As you consider various messenger bags, you likely noticed that the styles vary significantly.  Here are the most popular styles:

  • Minimalist: Features a clean and modern design.  Most versatile and can be used for casual carrying and formal business meetings.  Often features a nice, smooth treatment of the leather.
  • Utilitarian / Feature Focus: Often contains lots of pockets on the exterior, padded inserts, and other details.  This design is good for daily commuting.
  • Vintage: Features an authentic western-looking design.  It’s a blend between a utilitarian and outdoor-focused bag.  Good for casual use.

2. Leather Type

As you are keenly aware, leather comes in many different grades. Here is a quick refresher on the different types:

  • Top-Grain Leather: This is the best-looking leather.  It’s made from the top of the cowhide and has been buffed and treated to remove all surface imperfections such as scars, natural weathering, etc. Over the years, this leather develops a nice patina that looks and feels beautiful.
  • Full-Grain Leather:  The thickest leather variant, it provides unmatched durability and strength.  Like top-grain, it will also develop a nice patina.  The break-in period for this leather is significantly longer than other types.  This is ‘buy-it-for-life’ leather.
  • Nubuck Leather: Like suede, nubuck has been buffed and sanded to provide a velvet-like texture.  However, unlike suede, nubuck leather is from the top-grain of leather making it significantly more durable.  Nubuck leather is often sourced from calfskin.

Note (for leathers listed above): These leather varieties often sourced from a tannery with a rich legacy for delivering uncompromising materials.  If you value quality and don’t mind paying a bit extra, you should only consider these leather types.

  • Genuine Leather: Made from the underside of leather, genuine leather isn’t as durable and is found in many of the cheaper leather messenger bags.  Expect genuine leather to last you only a couple of years with regular use.
  • Suede: Made from the underside of animal skin, suede has been treated to have a napped finish that is velvet-like (source). This will require special treatment if it gets dirty or scuffed.
  • Lambskin: Not as durable as cowhide leather, this leather is soft to touch and presents well.  You should consider this leather for business or professional settings only.
  • Faux Leather: Marketed as synthetic or PU leather, it is made from polyurethane and is animal and vegan-friendly.  Never pay more than $75 for this leather.

3. Storage & Compartments

Well-designed storage compartments provide you with easy organization, allowing you to grab your gear quickly.  Here are the important storage options that you should know about:

  • Main / Large Compartment: Where the bulk of your gear is stored.  While tempting, try not to go too big here.  Having too many items stored in your large compartment may lead to incidental damage to your valuable gear and make things harder to find.
  • Interior Pockets: Dedicated pockets for your most accessed items (i.e. laptop/tablet, phone, headphones, etc.) make sense – especially if you plan on carrying multiple items.  Secondly, padded inserts can provide additional protection.
  • Exterior Side Pockets: Provides essential items without having to open the main compartment.  Ideal for phone, drink, document, or wallet storage.

4. Shoulder Strap

The right shoulder strap will make the bag much more comfortable for you to carry – especially if you plan on carrying a lot.  Here’s a brief overview of a few details we wanted to make you aware of:

  • Padded Shoulder Straps: Makes carrying your bag much more comfortable by displacing weight and adding a cushion to your shoulder.
  • Adjustable Shoulder Strap: Helps to make sure that the bag remains close to your body without getting in the way when walking. Also allows the bag to be at the appropriate height no matter how short or tall you are.
  • Removable Strap: Some messenger bags have removable straps.  This can make the bag suited for business formal settings when just a top handle is used.  

5. Closure Type

Your new bag will be opened and closed several thousands of times.  Therefore, we suggest that you take a minute to find which buckle type works best for you:

  • Single Clasp: A clasp keeps your gear secure.  A clasp can be opened by simply pressing down on the button.  You should be able to easily open a clasp with one hand should the other hand be occupied (i.e. sending a text).
  • Magnetic Snap: A simple pull of the outside flap on the messenger bag and a magnetic button will release.  Magnetic snap closures are great for guys that like a more minimalist appearance.  Just note that this closure isn’t as secure as a buckle or clasp design.
  • Buckle: While it’s the most secure closure, a traditional buckle closure is also the most laborious to use.  If you find yourself carrying valuable documents or devices, this closure will prevent theft – especially in dense urban areas and subways. Just know that this closure can become frustrating with heavy use.
  • Flap: Simply put, the weight of the top flap rests over the main compartment.  This allows  for easy access, however, which is not ideal in crowded urban areas where pick-pocketing may occur.

6. Extra Features

Here are a few additional features you may find important when buying a messenger bag:

  • Padded Laptop Sleeve: A dedicated padded sleeve for your laptop provides additional protection for your computer from moderate impacts and short drops.  If you plan on carrying your laptop regularly, a padded laptop sleeve is a requirement.
  • RFID Protection: RFID skimming is a source of concern for many.  Some companies make an RFID leather messenger bag with a special lining to prevent financial theft.  We only recommend that you consider this if you live in an area where you commute via mass transportation.
  • Card Slots: Perfect for business cards, accessible card slots are great for businessmen who find themselves networking regularly.
  • Durable Canvas Lining: To prevent leather rotting from the inside out, a thick duck canvas lining on the inside will contain spills from seeping through and damaging the leather exterior.  Consider this canvas material only if you plan on storing drinks, sodas, etc. within your bag regularly.
  • Cell Phone Pocket: With smartphones continuing to get bigger, the pant pocket is no longer a good storage area.  A bag with a dedicated cell phone pocket can be a welcomed addition.

7. Country of Origin

When considering leather goods, we strongly recommend that you go with a leather bag that has been made in the United States, Italy, England, France, and select Central and South American countries.  

These countries have a reputation for the finest leather goods that will meet and exceed your expectations.

8. Leather Brands

During our research, we have found the following leather brands to be among the most popular and trusted among men:

  • Bosca
  • Buffalo Jackson
  • Cole Haan
  • Filson
  • Frye
  • Hugo Boss
  • Kenneth Cole
  • Kodiak
  • Leatherology
  • Montblanc
  • Nisolo
  • Rodd & Gunn
  • Samsonite
  • Satchel & Page
  • Shinola
  • Smythson
  • Ted Baker
  • Tom Ford
  • Visconti
  • Wilson Leather

9. Price Range

If you are a man that values products that have been made with the highest level of craftsmanship, then you should expect to invest at minimum $100 for a new leather messenger bag.  Bags at this price level rely on top grade leather and are designed to last you a lifetime and not just a couple of years.

Leather Messenger Bags: Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best leather messenger bag?

During our research, we found that the Kodiak Sitka Leather Messenger, Nisolo Loreto Leather Messenger Bag, and Leatherology Laptop Messenger Bag were our top three leather messenger bags.

Are messenger bags bad for you?

If you overload a messenger bag and hold it on one shoulder, it may cause some mild discomfort in your lower and upper back which over time, can be bad for you. Some leather messenger bags, such as the Nisolo Loreto Leather Messenger Bag, have a top handle that makes it easier and comfortable to carry when heavy.

Are messenger bags in style?

Messenger bags such as the Kodiak Sitka Leather Messenger are currently in style and will likely remain that way for some time given their versatility and timeless look. Messenger bags can be a stylish option for casual, semi-formal, and formal occasions.

What should I look for in a messenger bag?

Some qualities that you should look for in a leather messenger bag include quality full-grain leather, timeless style, and thoughtful craftsmanship, such as those found in the Kodiak Leather Messenger Bag.

About Shawn Burns

Shawn Burns is the founder and senior editor of Tools of Men. He started this site with the goal of teaching men proper grooming habits and sensible style. Shawn's expertise includes in-depth product reviews and how-to articles. Shawn was recently featured in the Wall Street Journal for his expertise.

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