Purses that are bulky and heavy on your shoulders can often lead to back pain. We have found some of the best options available if you are looking for a light, comfortable, ergonomic, and healthier bag for your body.
From styles that are cross-body, sling, and backpack purses to tiny clutches, we have found the best designs that will cut down on the strain on your back and help to keep you pain-free.
We have options for all tastes and budgets that are comfortable, stylish, and look great.
Ameribag Healthy Back Bags is one of the best options to check out if you find that your purse is causing you pain. They are often imitated, but nothing beats the original Healthy Back Bag. They come in a few different sizes (XS, small, medium, and large), with the design being mostly the same for all sizes.
These bags are made to take the pressure off your back, but they are also helpful for organizing your stuff due to the pockets’ interior design. In addition, the numerous pockets should give you the bonus of only carrying what you need, so you will cut down on the bag’s weight, which is a huge factor in finding a bag that won’t cause pain.
One notable feature of the Ameribags is that the straps have a pebbled surface, which keeps them on your shoulder and stops them from sliding off. The strap is adjustable, so you can move the bag around and carry it in front of you, across your body, or over your shoulder.
Another favorite feature in the Ameribag designs is the contrasting color of the inner lining that helps to make it easy to locate everything inside the bag. You cannot beat these bags for comfort and functionality if trying to avoid back pain. Many say that this bag style feels better than a backpack because of how it distributes the weight.
Wearing a small, light backpack is one of the best options to keep your back and shoulders feeling great since it allows you to distribute the bag’s weight evenly across your shoulders. Backpacks will also enable you to adjust the straps to move them around if you feel discomfort in one position.
If you go for a backpack style, don’t wear it over just one shoulder, as it will strain your neck and make it harder for your back to stay correctly aligned.
A beautiful, fashionable backpack style is the Rebecca Minkoff Julian Nylon Backpack. What is great about this bag is that the nylon makes it light for carrying, and since it is backpack style, it is big enough to take a lot of your essential items while still being reasonably small for a backpack.
It has an unusual back zipper that helps makes it a great-looking style. The nylon material makes it easy to take care of and keep clean. It works great for traveling or commuting due to how comfortable it feels to wear. You can get this backpack in three colors: black, light pink, and gray.
The small Micheal Kors backpacks are trendy styles that work well as a back-friendly purse alternative since they are fashionable while still comfortable.
The Michael Kors Rhea Zip Small Backpack is a gorgeous bag that is small but can fit many essentials. This particular bag is more like a handbag in the design of a backpack. It has one interior zipped pocket and one exterior pocket.
Since it is leather, some may find the 1.6 lbs weight a little too much compared to nylon options, but the small size helps compensate for the leather’s weight. Also, if you are looking for a leather option, this may be the bag for you.
It comes in a few chic and elegant colors in beautifully textured pebble leather. In addition to being cute and classy, it is a convenient bag as it has many compartments to keep you organized.
Travelon Anti-Theft Classic Light Convertible Crossbody and Waistpack
Sometimes you don’t realize just how uncomfortable your bag is until you take a trip with it. Hours of walking and carrying a decent amount of stuff in your purse can wreak havoc on your back. A great brand to check out that makes excellent bags to wear when traveling is Travelon.
They have many different styles and sizes of bags for traveling, with one of their best for your back being the Travelon Anti-Theft Classic Light Convertible Crossbody and Waistpack. It is quite a small, light option that converts from a crossbody bag to a waist-pack, with both styles easy on your back.
The cool thing about this design is that it has many anti-theft features, including locking compartments, slash-resistant construction, and an adjustable shoulder strap that can attach to a chair. It also has RFID blocking card, passport slots, and multipurpose pockets for smartphones and passports.
It is big enough to carry quite a few essentials while remaining light enough to carry all day. In addition, it comes in a nice variety of colors to choose from, including black, purple, lush blue, mocha, and berry.
The Sydney Satchel by Kavu® is a larger, lightweight option with an ergonomic contour design, so it will be safe to wear if you have back issues. It is made of a light canvas in a few different colors and patterns.
Since this is a bigger bag than other options on this list, you can wear this style a few different ways if the weight one way is too much. It has a lot of interior organization pockets and external back zip pockets to keep you organized.
It is quite a sporty-looking bag, so it won’t work for all situations, but it is a great, ergonomic option if you have no choice but to carry large items in your purse.
The Baggallini-Everywhere Lightweight Crossbody Bag is perfect for traveling and as a large, everyday purse. It can also help you stay super organized due to the high number of pockets and an inner compartment for your various items.
The bag is not only functional, but it’s also chic and comes in a great variety of attractive colors. You can adjust the straps and make them short or long, depending on your particular needs.
The other great features of this bag are that it is inexpensive and super durable so it will last quite a long time.
You may not be a massive fan of the fanny pack, but they are an option worth considering if you want to take the strain off your back.
The Herschel Supply Co. has a few different sizes and fanny pack styles that are worth checking out. The Fifteen Fanny Pack is quite a nice pack as far as the colors available and the size of the bag.
Fanny packs are great if you only have a few items to carry and want to keep your hands free. Many people love wearing them when visiting theme parks because you can usually wear them on rides. They are easy to access, making it easy to get through security quickly.
Overall this pack from Herschel is convenient, cute, easy to clean, and easy to adjust.
If you can’t bring yourself to wear a fanny pack, another small option that will be easy on your back and shoulders is the Functional Multi Pocket Crossbody Bag design. It is tiny, but you can get most phones and some credit cards, money, keys, and probably lipstick in it without too much trouble.
The inside is lined with a soft fabric to avoid friction or damage to your phone. The less you carry around with you, the easier it is to avoid straining your back. Sometimes you can’t avoid carrying many items in your purse, but for the occasions you can, it is well worth it.
This Crossbody is a fashionable, practical, and great design that allows you to carry your essentials in an organized way. It also comes in lots of colors and is inexpensive.
Another option to avoid the pain of carrying a purse on your shoulder is to try a clutch. What is excellent about clutches is that due to the lack of a strap, you will be moving it around quite a bit. You may hold it in your hands or under your arm, switching it side to side as you walk around.
They aren’t the most practical option in all situations, but they are great for avoiding back and neck strain. A chic, beautifully made clutch if you are looking for a style to carry your essentials without being too big or bulky is the Leather Pouch Clutch from Madewell.
It is a great clutch that is stylish and won’t cause any strain since it is easy to hold or wear against the body. It comes in 5 colors in tumbled leather with a ring-pull zipper for easy opening. This leather clutch has a built-in wallet with six interior card slots and a snap pouch for coins.
Coach makes a lot of beautiful purses; one style that is nice and light is the Wyn Crossbody.
This crossbody includes plenty of slots for credit cards and money, as well as enough room for your phone. The leather is super high quality, and it is a gorgeous, basic style that can be worn in almost any situation, from dressing it up or down. It is a simple and elegant style that is both practical and stylish.
Finally, one other type of bag that is not quite as common as the styles listed above is a small bag with a top handle that is impossible to hang from your shoulders.
An excellent example of this type is the Launer Handbags that the Queen favored, which unfortunately cost thousands of dollars.
What to look for in a purse to avoid back and shoulder pain
Types or Styles
Ergonomic bags or purses are a good place to start. Unfortunately, they aren’t always the most stylish.
Backpacks, if worn with both straps, are recommended as a top style to avoid back pain, especially if you have large or heavy items to carry around.
Crossbody styles are usually very light and easy to switch sides often to even out the weight.
Clutches can also be a good option if they aren’t too big or bulky.
Fanny packs are something to consider, especially for a theme park or situation where you want to keep your stuff close to your body and your hands free.
Small bags with a top handle are worth looking at as they force you not to carry the bag on your shoulder.
Multiple-Way Bag– A bag you can wear in various ways as a backpack, cross-body, or shoulder bag to vary the load is also a great option.
Easy Access- Look for bags with lots of pockets and compartments that make it easy to find your items. If you have to dig around in your bag, you may twist or strain your back, causing your spine dis-alignment and leading to further back pain.
Light Material and detailing –The best bags for your back are those that are made from light materials like soft, light leather or nylon that have little or no heavy adornments like buckles, metal hardware, studs, or heavy stones.
Size – The smaller the size, the better, as you won’t be able to overload the bag with unnecessary items. Heavy bags create stiffness in the back and neck because the bag’s weight isn’t distributed evenly. If you do find yourself carrying a heavy bag on your shoulder, make sure you switch it from side to side frequently to cut down on the strain.