Nothing can make a beach or pool day unpleasant in quite the same way that faulty beach bags can. If your pack is too structured, it’s clunky, and if it’s it not structure enough, you’re at risk of a major spill. Then there’s the fabric—if it’s not made to withstand sand and water, your bag and belongings can get ruined after one trip. Not too mention the amount of pockets, how spacious it is, how much it weighs… the list of make-or-break qualities in a beach bag goes on.
But with summer in full swing, you need something to pack all your stuff—sunscreen, wallet, feel-good reads—on beach trips. Below is a list of all the beach bags we’d pack ourselves, for every style, occasion, and budget.
What make a good beach bag?
The number one thing to look for in a beach bag (aside from style) is fabric. When it comes to withstanding the water, sun, and sand, not all fabric is created equal. Look for materials like treated canvas, neoprene, nylon, mesh and straw that won’t warp or suffer discoloration.
Size and strap comfort
Odds are if you’re carrying a beach bag, you will be shoving a lot stuff into it. With that in mind, a key factor when looking for that perfect beach bag is how you carry it. The right beach bag still fits under your arm, even when filled to the brim. Of course, this depends on your preference—perhaps you prefer to carry your stuff on your back. In that case, go for a backpack. Or maybe you like a crossbody, which would constitute longer straps.
Pockets, pockets, pockets. The best beach bags are the ones that can be organized easily; we love both internal and external pockets (preferably with a zipper so stuff doesn’t fall out). Also remember, you’ll likely be carrying at least one towel in there. Make sure there’s room.
The 17 best beach bags to carry with you this summer
Shylero, Beach Bag — $4.00
The Shylero Beach Bag and Pool Bag gets top billing on our list. It has enough space for four beach towels and can carry up to 20 pounds of stuff. Reviewers love the different color options as well as the built-in key carabiner and bottle opener. A zipper tote with interior and exterior pockets and a water repellent outer lining, this beach bag tote takes care of all our functional considerations while staying cute.
Material: polyester with waterproof coating; polyester lining
- Ample pockets for organization
- Zipper closure
- Machine washable
- Rope handles might be shorter for carrying over the shoulder
- Some reviews say the bag is heavy
Best on Amazon
Hoxis, Mesh Bag Tote — $17.00
The number one bestseller in Women’s Tote Handbags on Amazon and it’s easy to see why so many people love this summer tote. This mesh beach bag is lightweight and versatile, with a pocket big enough to fit a phone, sunglasses, and sunscreen. The bag comes in a variety of colors and for a cute beach bag that is also very roomy it’s hard to beat this price.
Material: mesh, nylon, polyester
- Highly rated
Vitamin A, The Jacksons Tote — $120.00
This jute summer bag from Vitamin A comes with an oh-so-sunny message. If you’re going from a seaside lunch to an afternoon in the sand, this bag does the work and makes a fashion statement in the process. If you’re someone who wants a zillion compartments to keep everything organized, this may not be the beag for you as it doesn’t have any pockets. But if you’re looking for style and versatility this is a great summer beach tote option.
Material: 100% Jute
- Tightly woven
Target – Shade & Shore, Mesh Beach Tote — $10.00
Big, sturdy, affordable, doesn’t matter if you get it dirty—sign us up. This mesh tote bag comes in a variety of colors, and has external pockets on the front and sides making organization relatively easy. It is also incredibly lightweight and very easy to clean. Many reviewers mention that once they bought one, they went back to buy it in a few more colors.
- Exterior pockets
Gap, Rainbow Stripe Straw Tote — $55.00
A tote straw bag we absolutely love, this choice from the Gap is the perfect blend of trendy and timeless. If you don’t mind a bag with one big pocket for all, this is a very cute and classic choice—all for a reasonable price. If organization within the bag is a top priority for you, allow us to steer you in another direction (this bag has no interior pockets).
Material: 100% paper straw
Dimensions: No dimensions listed
- Stylish design
Best for families
Becokan, Beach Bag — $17.00
This beach bag tote is large enough for an entire family to use. The huge main pocket can fit 4-6 beach towels, then there’s also an interior pocket, as well as two exterior pockets which are the perfect size and shape for sunscreen or a water bottle. The bag has a zipper closure, comes in a variety of colors, and is machine washable. If you’re looking for an extra large beach bag, this one is hard to beat.
Material: canvas with polyester lining
- Extra spacious
- Machine washable
- Some reviews say the rope handles might be hard to carry
Best for kids
Daikoye, Mesh Beach Bag — $9.00
An awesome option for kids to carry their own toys or to collect sea shells (though truly there is no age limit on either of those activities). Indeed, many of the reviewers on Amazon mention they use this bag for shelling. This mesh beach bag is small, is sold in a pack of three, has an adjustable shoulder strap, and a colorful zipper. This bag is also extremely easy to clean—which comes in handy for humans of any age.
Material: nylon and mesh
- Sold in 3-pack
- Zipper closure
- Some reviews complain about durability
Best for travel
Sea Star Beachwear, Fisherman’s Tote — $65.00
This trendy, open-weave beach bag will definitely require an interior pouch if you want to carry keys or makeup, but on the plus side, it lies totally flat in a suitcase, dries easily after getting wet, and is straight up adorable. Made from laser-cut neoprene, the Fisherman’s Tote comes in a variety of colors. The only real downside to this bag is that if it’s too overstuffed it will stretch out.
- Very packable
- Very lightweight
- Dries quickly
- Super open weave
- Stretches with use
Odysea, Extra Large Mesh Beach Bag — $20.00
Another excellent mesh beach bag option, the 8-pocket Odyseaco is big, and a great choice for mega beach day organization. The design is also ultra practical with a clip for keys and a waterproof bottom so you don’t have to worry when you place it down on wet or sandy surfaces. The straps are both adjustable and removable, so you can customize how you’d like to carry it and the zipper closure is truly the cherry on top.
- Ultra spacious
- Ample pockets
- Waterproof and quick-drying
Solyinne, Straw Beach Bag — $27.00
A large straw bag option, the Solyinne tote is cute enough for breakfast by the pool and functional enough for a day at the beach. The bag has a top zipper closure and an interior lining as well as a small zippable interior pocket. If the tassel is not your style, you can go ahead and remove it (many reviewers did). This summer bag is stylish, and has beach vacation written all over it.
Material: Straw exterior, polyester lining
- Zip closure
- Internal pocket
Land’s End, Large Getaway Beach Tote — $50.00
The sturdiest of tote bags, this Land’s End classic is spacious, durable, and easy to pack in a suitcase. It is also 100% cotton, meaning if it gets a little dirty, that’s ok too. Available in three colors, the navy and white stripes are the perfect nautical-chic option, while the Jacobean and Palm Foliage offer versions more tropical and playful
Material: 100% cotton
Dimensions: 17″x17 3/4″x8″
- Packs flat
- Spot clean only
- No internal pockets
Best beach purse
Artesano, Santa Fe Bag — $102.00
This Artesano is small but mighty. Certainly not big enough for a beach towel, this beach bag is a more demure option which we imagine looking right at home at a high-end resort. Big enough for the day’s essentials, this bag can be worn over the shoulder or as a crossbody, and we love the contrasting materials at work. Cotton and natural straw for the win.
Material: cotton, natural straw
Dimensions: 8-9″ diameter
- Easy to pack
- Perfect size for essentials
Best beach backpack
Topo Designs, River Bag — $109.00
If you prefer to tout all your stuff to the beach on your back, Topo Design’s colorful River Bag has got you covered. This convertible pack features adjustable shoulder straps that can be worn either as a tote or a backpack, whatever suits your mood. It’s incredible durable and sustainable, thanks to the hardy recycled nylon that keeps your belongings dry and dries in a flash. And it’s loaded with features, including a cinch top, mesh, easy-access sides, and pockets galore.
Materials: recycled nylon
Dimensions: 10.5″w x 15″h x 5″d
- Tons of pockets and dividers
- Sustainable, water-resistant materials
Best tote-cooler hybrid
Hydro Flask, 18L Day Escape Soft Cooler — $150.00
Waterproof and insulated, this is a beach bag and cooler combo. For a bit of size perspective, the 18L capacity holds 24 cans (without ice) while keeping them cool for hours. Other aspects we like about this beach bag? It has a removable crossbody strap in addition to a shoulder strap. This is the perfect choice if your beach day also involves a picnic.
- Sturdy and durable
- Hybrid design
- Easy to clean
Yeti, Camino 35 Carryall — $150.00
Incredibly durable, this bag is the one you want if your day involves carrying a lot of stuff and might get messy. The exterior is puncture-proof and the sturdy waterproof bottom keeps the bag upright. There are many different ways to organize the bag, thanks to the removable internal dividers which can be used at your leisure. It’s perfect for boating, camping, and other outdoor adventures.
Material: nylon, vinyl
Dimensions: 7/8″x14 7/8″x18 1/8″
- Super sturdy and durable
- Internal pockets and dividers
- Easy to clean
L.L. Bean, Boat and Tote Zip-Top Tote — $45.00
The Boat and Tote has been a classic for decades. This bag first hit the market in 1944, and was billed as a great solution for hauling ice from “from car to ice chest.” Capable of carrying up to 500 lbs, this bag won’t break unless you’re doing some extraordinarily heavy lifting. The Boat and Tote has a bunch of different customizable choices and we favor the zip-top (so things don’t go spilling out) with long straps (so it’s always easy to carry over your shoulder).
Material: cotton canvas
Dimensions: 15″x17″x 7″
- Two strap lengths
- Timeless design
- Zip closure
- Spot clean only—white canvas gets dirty
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