I feel like I’ve been on the hunt for an organized bag ever since Kindergarten (yes, I was thinking about organization even back then). I couldn’t stand how typical bags just had one big pocket and one small front pocket. Without structure, my pencil case would rattle around and I am sure we all know the struggle of digging in our purse or backpack to find something. So, I recently began the hunt for a bag whose creators truly had organization in mind when they were developing it. This led me to The Honest Company Everything Tote and the Lululemon Cruiser Backpack.
I love black and grey for bags (obviously) but both of these come in other colors and/or prints. You can find the The Honest bag here and the Lululemon bag here. If you have a favorite bag, whether it’s a tote or satchel or backpack, whose design takes organization into mind please let me know in the comments below! I am always looking for the next best thing. Note: You can click on any of the pictures to see the full size version. Disclaimer: I purchased these products with my own money at my discretion. These opinions are truthful and my own! So let’s talk about the Lululemon Cruiser first..
Overall score for the Lululemon Cruiser Backpack: 9 out of 10
Number of exterior organizational pockets: 9 (12 if you count the mesh dividers inside some of them)
Number of interior organization pockets: 6
Great for: The commuter and busy-body.. someone who takes public transportation and goes from home, to work, to class, to gym, and back home again. Or a mom or dad.
Retail price: $118.00
Is it worth the money? Yes. Definitely.
+ Pros for the exterior: Great quality and feel, sturdy, and sleek. The zippers are covered in some type of polyester/faux-leather fabric so that they aren’t exposed, which contributes to its sleek look. There is a lot of padding on the back and shoulder straps of the bag, making it sturdy and very supportive of your back. The back panel also features a ventilated panel, which keeps me from getting too sweaty. It has a clip that goes around your chest for even more support, and a “stowable hammock” aka an extra clip in the front where you can secure your rolled up yoga mat. It can carry up to 50lbs (I have not personally tested this exact weight.. but I’m pretty sure I’ve gotten close to 25lbs. I don’t want to try and carry around 50), has a space for your water bottle, a specific pocket for a small notepad or calculator and pens (my extra-wide sharpie fits in the elastic too). I like to keep my headphones in the smallest front pocket, which also has a mesh divider inside. This keeps them from getting tangled up with the rest of my stuff.
– Cons for the exterior: Some of my water bottles are difficult to get into the side pocket. BUT, I do have 2 wide shaped bottles. So it takes a bit more effort, but they get in there. But a regular plastic Evian or Dasani water bottle will fit in their for sure. Also, the “cell phone” pocket on the strap is SUPER tiny, even though it is elastic. I feel like the only thing that can fit in there is my old Nokia 3595 (yes, I called out that model. You know you had it!)
+ Pros for the interior: I LOVE the mesh pockets on the inside large compartment. The top-most is my favorite because it is wide enough to fit my 8-inch wallet – keeping it secure yet easily reachable. Below that pocket are two, 4-inch wide mesh pockets which I use for my smaller bags (another organizing tip: use small makeup bags to store things and also to make it easy to transfer from one bag to the next). Again, GREAT because I don’t have to dig. Behind the 4-inch mesh pockets is another extra wide pocket – this is where I usually keep my laptop charger and mouse. The interior is really deep, so you can definitely pile books and snacks inside. There is also a large interior, “wet-dry” zippered pocket behind the front of the backpack mean to keep dirty clothes separate (it came with a laundry bag too!). The interior laptop compartment can hold up to a 17″ laptop (mine is only 11″, but that’s what it says on the website) and is also great for securing loose papers to keep them from getting crumbled.
– Cons for the interior: None.
OVERALL: This bag is well worth the $118. I feel like I got my money’s worth after using it for just 1 week straight. I work part-time in addition to going to school part-time, in addition to my organizing business. This backpack takes me through ALL of that COMFORTABLY. I think it would also be a great baby bag. A changing pad could easily fit in the laptop part, hand sanitizer and diaper cream in the inside mesh pockets, baby bottles on both exterior side pockets, wipes in the large interior mesh pocket. The best part is that it’s unisex! Your husband won’t mind using it and us ladies know a black bag goes with pretty much everything!
Now, on to The Honest Company Everything Tote..
Overall score for The Honest Company Everything Tote: 7.5 out of 10
Number of exterior organizational pockets: 7 (1 of them is covered in a wipeable lining!)
Number of interior organization pockets: 4 (2 of them are insulated!)
Great for: Meetings (I use this for potential organizing client and wedding vendor meetings), hanging on a stroller.
Retail price: $169.95 (if you are an Honest Co. regular customer you get 25% discount if you add it to our bundle)
Is it worth the money? Not really, unless you really care about the ingredients/materials that go into your products.
+ Pros for the exterior: It is SUPER cute and chick and polished looking. It is made out from 100% polyurethane vegan leather— NO toxic foams or PVC often found in diaper bags (as described on their website). So if that is something that’s important to you, I think that justifies the price point. I love that the 2 large exterior front pockets are zippered – keeping the items (like my keys) safe. Having a big with a zipper top closure is also very important to me, and this bag has that. My FAVORITE exterior pocket is the small cell phone one, which is also zippered. It is perfect for my Samsung Galaxy S4 (an S6 and an iPhone 6 would probably fit too, but not a Galaxy Note). I love this because I know exactly where my cell phone is, so if it accidentally goes off in a meeting I can turn it off quickly since I don’t have to dig. The 2 side pockets are great for baby bottles or water bottles. There is also a middle zipper area that is covered in a some kind of plastic lining. This is useful for keep wet or dirty items away from everything else. The shoulder strap is nice and thick. An awesome added feature is the 2 extra straps on both sides of the bag to make hanging the bag on your stroller easier and evenly distribute the weight.
– Cons for the exterior: The super wide back pocket which is meant for changing pads or laptops is not secure. There is no magnetic closure, button, or zipper. It’s a great, big pocket but my 11in laptop or anything else you put in their could fall out easily if the bag were to tip over. A 17in laptop might be more secure in there. There are 2 big downsides to this bag for me. 1) The bag itself is really wide to carry on your body. When I take it on my commute, I am constantly hitting people with my bag when going up the stairs, and I can’t fit through the subway ticket turnstiles with it on my side (I have to put it in front of me or lift it up). 2) The bag fits a lot, but that also means it can get really heavy. Actually, the bag gets so heavy that it discourages me from using it. The empty bag weights 2.37lbs by itself, which isn’t heavy at all. BUT, keep in mind I am carrying a lot of stuff – notebooks, sometimes a binder, laptops, chargers, etc. It might not be as heavy if you are carrying a lot of baby clothes. But I am not a mom so I don’t know. Every time I see a diaper bag hanging off of a shoulder they look packed. Basically, I stick to using when I have meetings and I know I am driving my car.
+ Pros for the interior: There are 2 insulated and zippered pockets inside that are great for snacks like fruits. The 2 interior pockets are large enough to hold my 8in wallet. I use the other to store my laptop charger and mouse. It’s very wide and can fit binders or paperwork. The lining can be cleaned easily in case of spills. The interior is just really large overall and could fit so many things.. shoes, another outfit if you roll it up, books.
– Cons for the interior: None.
Important note: So I actually received 2 bags. The first one had several issues with the exterior. There were threads hanging out and one of the handles didn’t seem sewed in securely. I felt like if I ripped hard enough or put enough stuff in the bag, that the handle would rip off. There was also this weird white stain covering the front stitching across the 2 big pockets. I was just very disappointed and didn’t think that with those defective qualities that I would have paid $170 for the bag had I seen it in the store. I called The Honest Company customer service line right away and they were great. The rep was apologetic and they sent me a brand new bag right away. I received it in the same week. I also really appreciated that they said I could wait to return the defective bag until I received the new one. I am so glad they weren’t like some companies who say “you have to mail it back to us first, then we will send you a new one.” The second bag I received was in perfect condition, but I still factored the first experience into my score.
OVERALL: This bag isn’t one of those “OMG I need this in my life!” ones. I felt that way when I ordered it, but I can actually live without it. It might be better for moms, whom it is geared towards, who need to hang a bag on their stroller. I can definitely see myself clipping it onto my stroller – it’s super cute and fits a lot! It does fit it’s name though, in that it fits everything. The downside is that everything becomes heavy.
Have you purchased either of these bags? Do you have any other organized bags you want me to review? Did you find this review helpful? Please let me know your comments and suggestions in the comments below!