Last updated: August 16, 2021

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Recently, shoulder bags have become one of the trendiest items. Big brands are promoting this type of bag as an essential piece in your wardrobe. Today in Reviewbox, we present you what types of shoulder bags exist and how to find the best one for your tastes and needs.

Whether as an item to complement your outfit or to carry your belongings in a comfortable, beautiful and safe way, shoulder bags are ideal for any type of person. As we will see below, there are shoulder bags of many types and shapes.

The most important thing is that these types of bags are excellent because they are the ideal size and shape for a variety of different activities. Thank you for trusting Monederosmart, where we will provide you with a comprehensive buying guide to the different types of bags on the market.

The most important facts

  • Shoulder bags are bags that cross over the shoulder and are attached to the body. These bags are ideal because they have a good size to hold a lot of things, they are quite safe due to their grip system, and they are very aesthetic and fashionable.
  • There are shoulder bags for different activities, or for people with different tastes. The varieties range from the slimmest and most fashionable bags to sporty shoulder bags. These bags will vary mainly in the materials they are made of.
  • Before buying a bag, you should consider what specifically you want to use it for, or if you want one that suits your different types of activities. The buying criteria we present to you are type of activity, versatility, size, material, and shape.

The Best Shoulder Bags: Our Picks

Buying Guide

Like any garment or accessory, choosing a shoulder bag is quite difficult because there are so many different designs and types, each one adapting not only to the use but also to the personal style of the buyer. In this buying guide, we will take you step by step through the most important aspects of choosing your bag.

Shoulder bags are very secure because they encircle the body with a strong band. (Photo: Brett Sayles /

What is a sling and what are its advantages?

First of all, a sling bag is a bag that contains a "sash" that crosses over the shoulder. These bags get their name from the specialised bags for hunting guns, as they have compartments where bullets and accessories were originally stored.

It is a safe way to carry some of your belongings, without fear of being snatched

The design of these bags is quite secure, as it is virtually impossible to snatch the bag as it is attached to the body. Also, the band that usually goes around your shoulder has a thick design, so it won't break if pulled. Additionally, shoulder bags are very roomy and are very versatile in their designs.

The only disadvantages we found are that, although they are large, they are not large enough to carry a computer, and they are large enough to cover up part of your outfit. They are harder to take off than a normal backpack.

  • Secure
  • Spacious
  • Versatile
  • Fashionable
  • Not roomy enough to hold a computer
  • They cover up your outfit
  • They are harder to take off than a normal backpack

Gadget or plain bags - what should you look out for?

Many bags include what we call "gadgets", which are accessories such as USB ports or batteries for your mobile phone. However, there are a few things to consider if you are thinking of getting one of these bags.

Gadget bag. These bags are very practical for people who are away from home for long periods of time, as they often include a mobile phone or iPad charger. Some are waterproof, as they are more delicate. They are recommended for travel, but not for sports as they are heavier.

Simple shoulder bag. There are many types of these bags, such as sports bags or designer bags. These bags are good because they are lightweight, although they don't have specific compartments to hold your stuff. Many are waterproof and are less delicate.

Gadget bag Simple bag
Accessories USB, cables No accessories
Space With compartments Without compartments
Strength Delicate Resistant
Weight Heavier Lightweight

Buying criteria: factors that allow you to compare and rate the different models of messenger bags

Finally, here are some criteria to follow when buying a messenger bag. These criteria will show you exactly what type of bag you need according to the use you plan to make of it, and how to find the one that best suits your tastes.

  • Type
  • Material
  • Size
  • Design


The most important buying criteria is what type of bag we need. This will depend a lot on our tastes, but mostly it will be determined by our types of daily activities, i.e. whether we want a bag for work, the gym, etc.

Gadget bag. Gadget bags are great for people who want to take them to work, as they have a mobile phone charger, among other things. These bags are perfect for students.

Sports shoulder bag. If what you want is a bag to take to the gym or on a hike in the mountains, we recommend sports bags, as they are quite light and most of them are made of waterproof materials.

Aesthetic shoulder bag. Aesthetic bags, i.e. made of materials such as leather or fabric with designs, are becoming more and more popular. We highly recommend this type of bag to replace handbags, which are much less secure against theft.

Nowadays there are many designs of shoulder bags in clothing and accessory shops (Photo : Utopia /


The material of our shoulder bag will be closely related to the type, as each one requires special characteristics to fulfil its functions. Here we describe some pros and cons of the materials we usually find in messenger bags.

Fabric. There are many fabric bags that are very nice, light and comfortable. However, they have the disadvantage of not being waterproof, so your electronics will not be protected from rain or accidents.

Soft waterproof. This material is the most common in sports bags, as they are very light materials that serve as waterproof. They are designed for sports but are great for walking, for example, as a tourist.

Hard waterproof. Bags with gadgets, mainly, are the ones that need a harder material, as they imply that we are going to carry electronics like our iPad or mobile phone. These materials are very resistant, although they will be a bit heavier.

Leather and derivatives. The good thing about leather or faux leather bags is that these materials are partially waterproof, so they are quite resistant to water and dirt. It's a good alternative to fabric, depending on your personal taste. They are not good for sports, as contact with the body and sweat can irritate.


Most of the shoulder straps have a similar size, as they fit around the chest and stomach area. However, some are smaller than others, and each size has its own specific functions. This will depend a lot on what you want to use your bag for.

Small (20 by 10 cm). We recommend a small shoulder bag if you want to complement your outfit and carry your essentials with you. These bags basically fulfil the functions of a handbag, but are much more secure.

Medium (30 by 20 cm). This is the range in which we find most of the bags made for sports where you carry the bag with you, such as cycling or hiking. Generally you can store your essentials plus a few items of clothing.

Large (40 by 30 cm). Although many gadget bags are medium sized, you will generally find bags that are almost the size of a backpack. This is mainly because they are designed to store electronic devices such as iPads.


Lastly, we should pay attention to what kind of design we prefer in terms of the complexity of the bag. Almost all designs are also grouped by type, although there are some subtle differences.

Simple. The simplest messenger bags are the light medium sporty ones, as they do not contain accessories that can get caught in clothing, nor do they have extra compartments outside of possibly a small mobile phone pouch. There are aesthetic bags that are also very simple, and are excellent for everyday use.

Delicate. The finest shoulder bags in design are those of clothing brands. These bags are "delicate" because they may have several pouches or embellishments, but they are subtle and small. They are ideal for everyday use as a "handbag".

Complex. The most complex bags are the ones that contain gadgets, ideal for students and workers. These will have many pouches, compartments, and possibly embellishments or attachments on the strap. It is not advisable to use a complex bag for sports, as they are cumbersome and uncomfortable.

We hope this guide has been supportive and that you have a great experience with your favourite bag purchase. Come back soon!

(Featured image photo: Vitor Aranda /

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