Fashion, functionality and durability are three key factors that influence students’ buying decisions for their college backpacks. These 10 backpacks are some of BYU students’ favorites.
JanSport has been a leading brand in the industry for years with both simple as well as complicated designs.
BYU senior Victoria Branscomb said she got her first JanSport backpack when she was in eighth grade.
“I have loved them ever since. I know what I’m gonna get: it’s sturdy and reliable,” she said. “I don’t care to find something ‘cute’ when it comes to my backpack.”
Fjallraven is a Swedish outdoor equipment company. “Fjallraven” means “Arctic Fox.” One of the first rucksacks the company produced was a simple-frame rucksack made of tent material.
The bags have proven to be durable, comfortable, trendy and good for wearers’ backs.
“I just saw a lot of people wearing it around campus, so I looked it up and it says it’s really good for your back, which is exactly what I need,” sophomore Anelise Ramsay said.
Herschel backpacks are some of the newest bags to hit the market. The company is one of the fastest growing backpack companies since its founding in 2009. Junior Jessica Connor likes that the backpack is lightweight and small because she only takes her computer to class.
Connor got her maroon and white bag because the salesman at the store said it’s popular and people would love it.
“He was right,” Connor said. “I get tons of compliments and I love it.”
Ogio is a known travel bag, but it has increased in popularity on campus because study abroad programs like the Jerusalem study abroad use it for many of the program’s backpacks. Ogio’s trademark is its innovative style and intelligent designs.
Nike sportswear also has a presence in the backpack industry. Nike backpacks can be seen on BYU student athletes all over campus in the classic BYU navy and white.
The North Face
The North Face was created after a hiking trip to Eagle Mountain in Minnesota. The north face of a mountain in the Northern Hemisphere is known for being the coldest, iciest, most formidable path for hikers to take.
In 2007, JanSport was the world’s largest backpack maker. Now combined with The North Face, the two sister companies dominate nearly half of all small backpack sales in the United States.
“I already was using it for a ski backpack and so I decided to just use it for my school backpack,” freshman Brit Harding said. “It’s extremely comfortable.”
LeSport Sac is an American company that gained popularity for its fold-in-a-pouch parachute nylon bags.
The company is also known for its collaborations with different designers. Junior Jayne Verhaaren has a Riffle Paper Company backpack she got from LeSport Sac. “I got it because I thought it was cute and I liked the draw strings,” she said.
Dakine backpacks are a major seller in the BYU Bookstore. Junior Ryan Worth got his red all-purpose Dakine backpack as a freshman in 2011. He got it when he needed a new backpack because it was on sale.
“I’ve had it and loved it ever since,” Worth said.
Junior Stella Leung purchased her Dakine bag in February because her previous one wasn’t big enough to store her supplies and lunch. She went to the bookstore and found the Dakine backpack, which was the right size and color and had many pockets. She can now stay on campus until 10 p.m. because she doesn’t have to go home for food.
“It’s the perfect size,” Leung said.
Vera Bradley is an American design company most known for its handbags and backpacks with their easily recognizable patterns. BYU Cougarettes use them for their school backpacks.
Over-the-shoulder messenger bags do not come from any one company, but the style is collectively a trend at BYU for men and women because of the backpacks’ professional style.
Junior Connor Robertson said his has lasted him a few years. “It’s very durable, it’s waterproof, it helps me stay organized, and on top of everything else it’s very stylish,” he said. “I get compliments on it all the time.”