We're firm believers that every school year should start with some fresh gear to up the excitement. After all, if a brand new backpack can do for our kiddos what a designer bag can do for us, then it's the perfect way to start the new school year. So whether your little one plans on learning in the classroom or logging on from home, we've rounded up a list of the absolute best backpacks on the market for keeping all their back-to-school supplies both secure and stylish.
The best kids' backpacks are the high-quality kind that not only resist wear and tear (think dirt, water, and yes—even rips), but also boast excellent looks and long-term appeal. It has to last a whole year, of course, and a backpack that holds your child's attention can only be a plus. Ahead, you'll find a variety of styles that fit this bill, whether you're searching for your girls, boys, kindergarteners, or elementary schoolers. Keep scrolling to discover the Top 10 kids backpacks that will have your kiddos starting the year on a stylish note.
Our Method For Finding The Best Kids Backpacks
With the help of our data-driven algorithm, we scoured the internet in search of the best backpacks for kids on the market. This proprietary tool factors in reviews, social media buzz, best-seller lists, and more to rank and discover the best products on the web, so you know it's information you can trust. Below, shop a selection of backpacks from beloved brands like L.L. Bean, Lands End, Herschel Supply, and more. For your little ones, it can only be the best of the best, and their backpack should be no different.
Next up, check out the 10 Best Kids Clothing Websites.
Top 10 Lists serve as unbiased shopping guides to the most trusted product recommendations on the internet. Products are scored and ranked using an algorithm backed by data consumers find most valuable when making a purchase. We are reader-supported and may earn a commission when you shop through our links.
The North Face Youth Recon Squash Backpack
LOVED FOR: Unlike many kids backpacks, this style is large enough to fit the essentials (including a standard 9.5" x 12" folder and water bottle) but still small enough to remain compact and comfortable to carry.
HELPFUL TIP: This backpack features a reflective bike-light loop, so you'll never have to worry if your kiddo happens to get caught in the dark.
Cat & Jack Classic Kids' 17" Backpack
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: If you're in need of compartments, this backpack is the one for you. Here, there's a main section complete with a laptop sleeve, an exterior compartment for stationary and accessories, and two side pockets for water bottles to boot.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: There's an additional special feature that comes with this option: a removable plush toy, so your kiddo's backpack always has a friend nearby.
Fjällräven Kånken Water Resistant Backpack
WHY YOU NEED IT: While this kid-approved backpack is sure to make a stylish statement at school, it'll also be great for weekend trips, hikes, and travel days. Consider it the only backpack your kiddo will ever need.
THINGS TO KNOW: Your little one can carry this backpack by the adjustable backpack straps or snap-together top handles.
Simple Modern Fletcher Kids' Backpack
WHO IT'S FOR: With this backpack, there's a pattern for every personality from the Disney fans to dinosaur-lovers. Plus, it comes in two sizes for differing needs and includes extra padding amd straps to make carrying it more comfortable.
USER REVIEW: "I ordered this backpack for my 2 year old daughter for an upcoming trip; it fits her perfectly. It has enough space for her toys and books, and then pockets on side for her water cup. It also seems very durable. My daughter loves it, and I am also very happy with it."
Herschel Supply Co. Kids Heritage Backpack
WHO IT'S FOR: If your kiddo prefers something stylish and understated to backpacks with bells and whistles, you can't go wrong with this classic. Herschel has been designing simple but high-quality backpacks for years, and the brand's kids version is no exception.
THINGS TO KNOW: The spacious main compartment can hold books, clothes, and other daily essentials, while the interior sleeve pocket can hold up to a 15" laptop. Talk about tiny but mighty.
L.L.Bean Original Book Pack
ABOUT THE BRAND: L.L.Bean kills it when it comes to kids backpacks, and it's easy to see why. The brand carries tons of different styles, from classic book bags to rollers to hiking backpacks, and all of them are made with smart features like storm flaps, padded straps, tech pockets, and more.
USER REVIEW: "This is a very nice, well-made backpack that's made to last. We purchased the red with the powder gray accenting around the edges. The monogramming of my son's first name is perfectly matched as the thread, and accent colors are the same. It looks amazing, and my son LOVES it!"
State Kane Backpack
WHY YOU NEED IT: STATE uses some of the most unique color combos and materials for all its designs, so you can easily find the one that best meets your little one's style and personality.
FUN FACT: For each bag sold, STATE Bags donates a fully stocked backpack to a local child in need.
Pottery Barn Kids Mackenzie Backpack
WHO IT'S FOR: If your kiddo is the type to put their backpack through lots of wear and tear, this Pottery Barn pick is an excellent choice. Featuring water-resistant polyester and sturdy zippers and straps, this baby is built to last.
FUN FACT: This top-rated backpack comes in all kinds of fun variations, from glow-in-the-dark options and cool camo prints for the boys to pretty polka dots and princesses for the girls.
Bentgo Kids Prints 2-in-1 Backpack & Insulated Lunch Bag
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: The fabric on this backpack is oh-so-adorable and incredibly durable, with it's 8 different patterns ranging from blue spaceships to purple unicorns and water-resistant exterior. Not only does it have two large zippered sections, but an additional insulated lunch box on the bottom that prevents loss.
ADDITIONAL FEATURES: When the school day stretches so long, it's important that kids recieve the support to carry their things comfortably. That's why this backpack has padded straps, a padded back, and an optional chest strap.
JanSport Superbreak Backpack
WHY YOU NEED IT: Is there anything more classic than a JanSport backpack? Comfortable, reliable, and complete with plenty of pockets, you can't go wrong.
USER REVIEW: "JanSport is the best brand for backpacks because they are stylish, durable, and have a FABULOUS repair program. If you buy a JanSport, you have purchased a product that lasts a lifetime! Whenever our kids (or we) break a zipper or wear out a seam, we simply contact the company and, for the cost of shipping, get it repaired quickly and well. The only downside is the sheer amount of colors and designs to pick from, but that, in my opinion, is a great problem to have!"