9 Sustainable Bags & Purses To Keep Your Essentials On Hand(bag) Image by Sustainable Jungle #sustainablebags #sustainablepurses #sustainablehandbags #ecofriendlybags #ecofriendlypurses #ecofriendlyhandbags #sustainablejungle
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9 Sustainable Bags & Purses To Keep Your Essentials On Hand(bag) Image by Sustainable Jungle #sustainablebags #sustainablepurses #sustainablehandbags #ecofriendlybags #ecofriendlypurses #ecofriendlyhandbags #sustainablejungle
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9 Sustainable Bags & Purses To Keep Your Essentials On Hand(bag)

Amber McDaniel

Here at Sustainable Jungle, we’ve got sustainability in the bag… well, we’re doing our best anyway, in part by looking for the most sustainable bags in any shape and form—purses, slings, totes, backpacks, you name it!

The handbag industry has more problems than most in the overall fashion umbrella (thanks leather) so how can we make sure we’re buying something that doesn’t harm anyone or anything?

Please hold our (sustainable) bag while we dish out the dirt on where to buy the best eco-friendly purses and handbags.

Everything we recommend to you on Sustainable Jungle is independently researched and we ask all brands to confirm their claims. To avoid waste, we test products on an as needed basis. This post contains affiliate links. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a small commission. Learn more about why we do this here.

A Sample Bag Of The Best Sustainable Handbag Brands

Carry Courage wants you to carry one of the most sustainable vegan materials around: cork fabric, which is not only a totally plastic-free form of vegan leather, but sequesters a bunch of carbon as it grows.

For eco-friendly bags made from recycled materials and no PVC in sight, Pixie Mood sure puts us in a positive mood.

Speaking of recycled, no one does it better than Malia Designs, who cleverly upcycles unique materials like animal feed bags into some of the most bespoke bags around.

1. Carry Courage

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Images by Sustainable Jungle

About Carry Courage

Price Range: $59—$349

Carry Courage started via 9-to-5 burnout (been there). After realizing her office job wasn’t inspiring her, Marisa took a courageous step to live her dream… and give other women the courage to do so as well!

They invite you to carry courage in the form of their “organizing solutions for intentional women”, which includes totes, essential oil bags, messenger bags, tablet clutches, and sustainable makeup bags

Their Advocate Tote is our personal favorite. In fact, we take it to the farmer’s market every single weekend, since its expansive interior is perfect for packing to the brim with locally grown goodies. Plus, the cork not only looks stylish, it’s easy to wipe clean so we don’t need to worry if we set it down in something dirty.

Carry Courage’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices


PETA-approved vegan, most bags are made of a buttery soft, durable, and renewable cork exterior with linen lining.

Anything in the NORBOO collaborative line is made of indiginous Tibetan natural fabrics.

Supply chain & labor practices: 

Carry Courage’s cork is sourced from the world’s cork mecca, Portugal, where it’s grown sustainably with strict harvesting regulations. Their linen is organically grown at a family-owned farm in the US and the metal hardware also comes from a US woman-owned company.

Products are ethically made in their fair trade studio in Portland, Oregon, while those from the NORBOO collection are made by Norboo Tibetan Handicrafts, a small artisan group in Tibet.

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Each bag is hand sewn in small batches, which eliminates machine emissions and wasted overstock. It also guarantees “heirloom quality” pieces that will last for generations.

2. Pixie Mood

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Images by Sustainable Jungle

About Pixie Mood

Price Range: $36—$130

Pixie Mood has been making PETA-approved vegan accessories for over a decade, including shoulder bags, clutches, belt bags, and wallets and travel organizers with radio frequency identification (RFID) blocking technology to protect your identity and bank account.

But everything they make is super versatile. Take, for instance, the Jane 2-in-1 Crossbody Wallet. We personally own this and there’s a reason it’s our main daily purse. It’s so incredible versatile. Half wallet clutch, half mini purse, if you only need the wallet, simple unclip it and go. And when it’s attached tot he purse, we loved the added magnetics that keep both components securely together.

It’s so cute and with a faux nubuck leather look and feel, it just as classic and easy-pairable with any outfit as leather…without all the ethical issues.

Pixie Mood’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices


The brand uses a variety of GRS-certified recycled materials in their handbags, including recycled canvas, cork, solvent-free vegan leather, wool, and linings made from recycled plastic bottles. 

The hardware is compliant with the European Union REACH standard, and all materials are tested annually to ensure they meet California Prop 65 standards.

Supply chain & labor practices: 

Pixie Mood audits its Asian manufacturers twice annually to ensure its labor standards are met, including no forced/child labor, no harassment or abuse, safe working environments, and fair wages and benefits. 

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Proud to call themselves a climate-positive company, Pixie Mood partners with TerraPass to offset carbon emissions down to your browsing time, and their manufacturing uses water and energy-saving techniques.

The biodegradable packaging is corn-based and any EPE foam is 100% recyclable. 

Community & charitable giving: 

Pixie Mood partners with 1% for the Planet, One Tree Planted, and the Humane Society, and are always open to new partners to further their change-making commitments. 

3. Malia Designs

9 Sustainable Bags & Purses To Keep Your Essentials On Hand(bag) Images by Malia Designs #sustainablebags #sustainablepurses #sustainablehandbags #ecofriendlybags #ecofriendlypurses #ecofriendlyhandbags #sustainablejungle
Images by Malia Designs

About Malia Designs

Price Range: $18—$68

Malia Designs represents harmony between western and eastern cultures, specifically that of Cambodia. Drawing inspiration from Angkor temples and the colorful streets of Phnom Penh, their huge selection includes every shape and size imaginable, from shoulder and cross body bags to bookbags.

This recycled bag brand invites you to #CARRYACAUSE and inspire a converation while you’re done it. And nothing will spark up conversation faster than their unique upcyceld designs, like that of the Recycled Cement Triangle Bag, with its bold red color blocks and Cambodian graphics.

Malia Designs’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices


Malia specializes in handbags made from recycled materials you don’t often see in fashion: recycled feed bags, cement bags, denim, and cotton canvas (sourced from leftover rolls of fabric from garment factories).

Supply chain & labor practices: 

To create economic opportunity for Cambodians living in high risk areas for human trafficking, Malia works with three women-led fair trade fashion cooperatives that employ people from disadvantaged groups including women, the deaf, and disabled individuals. One offers a choice between home-based employment or living accommodations attached to the workshop.

Community & charitable giving: 

Malia Designs wants to break the cycle of human trafficking in Cambodia by supporting organizations like Damnok Toek, a 100% Cambodian-run NGO that assists children and trafficking victims. Their donations provide bunk beds, education supplies, transportation, and vocational training for young women.

In addition, they provide grants and loans to their artisan groups for workshop expansion, training, and new equipment.

4. Doshi

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Images by Sustainable Jungle

About Doshi

Price Range: $59—$169

Doshi is an easy choice when it comes to choosing ethical bags, condering lineup consists of exclusively PETA-apprvoed vegan handbags and wallets, for men and women alike.

We own a couple of their pieces, but especially adore the Floral Kraft Tote. Not only that floral pattern with a rustic, textures background adorable, but it’s also thanks to biodegradable kraft paper that coated to ensure durability.

The boxy interior is pefect for stashing even large and awkward items, like 15″+ screen laptops and bulky DSLR cameras, which is the combo we usually keep stashed inside.

Doshi’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices


Doshi bags are with made of either Pinatex, PVC-free microfiber vegan leather, or (our favorite) a coated waterproof kraft paper. These are sometimes paired with a recycled Tyvek and microfiber lining.

Supply chain & labor practices:

Through BSCI and other social compliance certifications and regular staff visits, Doshi maintains high ethical standards in their factories.

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Doshi’s suppliers are chosen based partially no their limited use of solvents and chemicals used in manufacturing.

Community & charitable giving:

Doshi is BIPOC-owned and donates 5% of net sales to nonprofits to like Compassion Over Killing and Farm Sanctuary.

5. Bellroy

9 Sustainable Bags & Purses To Keep Your Essentials On Hand(bag) Images by Deux Mains #sustainablebags #sustainablepurses #sustainablehandbags #ecofriendlybags #ecofriendlypurses #ecofriendlyhandbags #sustainablejungle
Images by Deux Mains

About Bellroy

Price Range: $39—$449

The ultimate sustainable “carry company,” Aussie-based Certified B-Corp Bellroy offers RFID-equipped sustainable wallets and eco bags, backpacks, and tech sleeves for everything from travel to daily use.

Each one is designed with both style and functionality in mind (lots of pockets, anyone?)—like the Cooler Tote, which functions as an insulated lunchbox, reusable grocery bag, and spacious tote all in one.

If you’re looking for the ultimate in modern functionality, you can’t go wrong with the Lite Sling. It’s Ripstop recycled exterior is incredibly durable while its 7L capacity strikes the perfect happy-medium among their Sling line, large enough to hold an extra layer and water bottle, but not so large as to feel bulky.

Bellroy’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices


Many Bellroy bags utilize recycled polyester made from 100% recycled water bottles or recycled nylon made from 100% recycled industrial nylon offcuts.

You will, however, find some others made of TENCEL™ X REFIBRA™ and MIRUM® (a mushroom-based leather), and real leather from LWG Gold-rated tanneries or ECCO Leather. The latter’s DriTan™ technique uses moisture already present in the hide to reduce water and chemical usage.

Supply chain & labor practices:

Product prototypes are made in Australia and final products are made in China, India, and the Philippines in factories that comply with their Supplier Code of Conduct.

Leather is sourced from the Netherlands, though we’re uncertain of further ethical details.

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Bellroy’s decision-making is guided by goals to minimize use of toxins, utilize eco-friendly materials where possible, design products to last, reduce waste and energy, and understand their impact so they can further reduce it. 

Community & charitable giving:

A portion of revenue goes to changemaking charities, as guided by the Centre for Effective Altruism and the Effective Altruism community.

6. Deux Mains

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Images by Deux Mains

About Deux Mains

Price Range: $175—$395

Woman-owned and managed Deux Mains believes “Women are the Pillars of Society”—and sustainable purses are the pillars of any woman’s green wardrobe.

In addition to wallets, they provide a small selection of bags—including a tote, shoulder bag, bucket bag, and crossbody bag—in a variety of different colors. If you’re an “essentials only” person, check out the adorable Mini Essential Bucket Bag with a diamond woven pattern that provides a whole lot of look to this tiny bag.

Deux Mains’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices


These bags are either made of deadstock leather or responsibly (and locally) sourced and LWG-certified full grain leather from Haiti or Mexico. Their totes also feature upcycled tire inner tube bottoms for durability and waterproofing.

Supply chain & labor practices:

The brand’s name means “two hands” which is exactly what’s behind these ethically-made bags. Their own Haitian factory provides good wages (and overtime) as well as healthcare, paid vacations, and paid maternity / paternity leave.

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Deux Mains’ factory and tanneries run partially on solar power and their tanneries employ water and waste recycling practices. Their Mexican tannery is one of the top ten sustainable tanneries in the world.

Small batch manufacturing, handcrafting, and turning excess fabric into new products ensures minimum waste, while recycled packaging and goals of carbon neutrality further reduce this sustainable purse brand’s impact.

Community & charitable giving:

By providing meaningful work, Deux Mains takes a holistic approach to break cycles of poverty through their nonprofit partner REBUILD, offering skills training, higher education opportunities via its University Matching Program, and guaranteed jobs at Deux Mains after graduation.

7. Matt & Nat

9 Sustainable Bags & Purses To Keep Your Essentials On Hand(bag)Images by Matt & Nat#sustainablebags #sustainablepurses #sustainablehandbags #ecofriendlybags #ecofriendlypurses #ecofriendlyhandbags #sustainablejungle
Images by Matt & Nat

About Matt & Nat

Price Range: $40—$350

Canada-based Matt & Nat is a PETA-approved vegan brand that offers ethical handbags and accessories in a variety of styles ranging from classic to modern and edgy. With an array of rainbow colors to choose from, including lilac, seaglass, and chartreuse, you’ll probably spend a bit of time trying to decide which one suits you best.

Belt bags, briefcases, or a diaper bag to stash your little one’s eco-friendly diapers, Matt & Natt covers your carrying needs. 

The Annie Vegan Clutch features a unique strap designs that can be doubled over to carry in hand, or pulled to one side and slung on a shoulder, in doing so changing the whole look of the bag!

Matt & Nat’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices


Matt & Nat doesn’t use leather—ever. They do, however, use PVC leather, but are transitioning away in favor of PVB (polyvinyl butyral) made from 100% recycled windshield glass resin and PU or fruit skin fibers like apple leather.

Linings are made from 100% recycled plastic bottles—about 21 plastic bottles for each. 

Supply chain & labor practices:

In addition to employing local ethical managers, Matt & Nat’s CEO audits each factory twice yearly and visits each factory 2-3 times per year to inspect conditions. One operates by the SA800 standard, and the brand hopes to make the standard a bigger part of future production.

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Matt & Nat strives “to become fully sustainable by 2023.” There’s no details on how they plan to achieve that goal (especially as they’re still using PVC), but recycled materials are a start.

Community & charitable giving:

The main office in Montreal is dubbed a “cruelty- free zone” and hosts monthly vegetarian potlucks and vegan cupcakes to celebrate birthdays. 

They encourage customers to donate used Matt & Nat bags to Dress for Success and 100% of profits from the HOPE Charity Bag go to various charities.

8. Nisolo

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Images by Sustainable Jungle

About Nisolo

Price Range: $80—$350

Sustainable leather bags are few and far between. Between all the animals killed for their skins and the 250+ chemicals (arsenic, chromium, cyanide, etc.) conventionally used to tanned it, normally we’d say bag this material, but Nashville-based Nisolo is changing the industry.

In fact, they’re ranked #1 among leather product Certified B Corps and #3 among B-Corp shoe brands.

In addition to ethical shoes, they offer big and small bags—messenger bags, totes, shoulder bags, and crossbody bags—made of ethically sourced byproduct leather. We’ve tesed the Simone Convertible Shopper, which they dub “The Perfect Bag”.

And we have to agree, thanks to its practically indescrubtable build and heriloom-quality craftsmanship, convenient everyday size, and classic look that pairs with practically anything.

Nisolo’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices 


Nisolo uses nubuck and suede leathers, sourced as a by-product of the meat industry. They’ve personally visited and vetted all leather tanneries, most of which are certified by the LWG.

Others feature a cotton canvas body, vegetable-tanned leather straps, and copper rivets.

Supply chain & labor practices: 

Nisolo’s website includes detailed wage and condition information about each of their four factories and each product includes a Sustainability Facts Label. All factories must adhere to their Code of Conduct and they enforce these rules with the help of the Good Ops supply chain consulting group ACCOUNTABLE, which provides them with social impact assessments.

Nisolo is committed to providing a living wage to all, and co-founded the Lowest Wage Challenge for brands to publish their lowest wages.

They also provide in-house yoga and fitness classes, and training on topics like finances, health, nutrition, and English.

Carbon commitments & green practices:

Nisolo is Climate Neutral Certified and the top ranking fashion brand on Remake’s Accountability Report. They measure, reduce, and offset 100% of their carbon emissions with Ecosphere+by protecting trees from deforestation in the Cordillera Azul and Ucayali regions of the Peruvian Amazon.

Community & charitable giving: 

Nisolo launched a Shoe Reclamation Program and have collected and donated over 7,000 shoes to Soles4Souls.

9. O My Bag

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Images by O My Bag

About O My Bag

Price Range: €30—€389

OM…B(?) have we got sustainable leather handbags for you. Based in Amsterdam, O My Bag knows the value of doing things the green way—even when it comes to tanning leather.

This Certified B Corp’s ethical purses boast a classic, minimalist look that will pair well with most capsule wardrobes.

We love the #girlboss vibes we get from the mini briefcase-esque Audrey Crossbody Bag, with an absolutely classic leather body in three different color choices, with an organic cotton woven strap that’s interchangable if you want to switch up your style.

O My Bag’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices


Their ethical leather bags are made of uncoated vegetable “wet white” tanned byproduct-only leather. Tanning without VOCs or harmful chemicals like chromium, heavy metals, and formaldehyde (verified by independent SGS laboratory testing), they claim it’s so clean that leftover leather can be used as fertilizer.

Some vegan options instead use Uppeal™, a blend of 21% apple waste, 14% cotton, 38% polyester, and 27% PU. Since there’s still much virgin plastic involved here, we suggest avoiding if possible.

Each bag comes in a GOTS-organic cotton bag for storage, with linings and straps made from either GOTS-certified organic or GRS-certified recycled cotton.

Supply chain & labor practices: 

O My Bag the LWG Gold-certified tannery Shee Shen in Kolkata, India, which has its own primary effluent treatment plant and provides equal pay. Their other tannery in Italy, Conceria Nuova Grenoble, is a member of the Genuine Italian Vegetable Tanned Leather Consortium, purifies production water, and recycles production substances.

For manufacturing, they use SA8000-certified ethical factories in Kolkata, India, one of whom is also a member of the World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO).

Carbon commitments & green practices:

You can promote circular fashion by shopping their Pre-loved Library or take advantage of their repair services. They also use 100% renewable energy to power their office and stores and offer carbon-neutral global shipping.

Community & charitable giving: 

1% of O My Bag’s revenue is donated to support local projects which focus on women empowerment or education.

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2 thoughts on “9 Sustainable Bags & Purses To Keep Your Essentials On Hand(bag)”

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