Leather Vs. Canvas - Which Bag Material Should You Choose

If you are on the lookout for a new bag, you know that it’s not just the brand, style, colour, or size that you need to consider. One of the biggest factors that dictate your decision is the material. Among the many choices you have are canvas and leather. These two are among the most popular materials for bags of all kinds - backpacks, laptop bags, messenger bags, crossbody bags, and more. But which of these two materials is the better option for you?

In this post, we are going to look at some of the pros and cons of leather as well as canvas backpacks to help you decide which one is right for you: 

Leather Backpacks Pros and Cons

No one can deny the durability and beauty of leather bags. They have that timeless appeal that you can’t find elsewhere. Because of its pros and despite its cons, many brands continue to produce leather goods. But what are the pros and cons of leather bags? Here are some of them:


  • Leather bags can be used for many years because of their durability.
  • Leather bags age beautifully because of the patina that makes them look better when they’re vintage.


  • Leather bags are high-maintenance, especially compared to canvas.
  • When not chemically treated, leather absorbs water even faster than waxed canvas
  • Leather is hard to fix if it gets scratched, worn, or torn.
  • Leather bags are expensive.
  • They are not an eco-friendly choice. 

Canvas Bags Pros and Cons

Similar to leather bags, canvas bags have been around for hundreds of years now, but with the new technologies available, they now come in different sizes, colours, shapes, and price ranges. They’re far from the basic bag you once knew. 

Like any other material, canvas bags come with their own set of advantages and disadvantages. Here are some of them: 

  • Canvas bags are significantly lighter than leather bags, so they’re better for when you’re travelling with some heavy stuff as they don’t add to the weigh
  • Canvas as a material is more versatile, so manufacturers can come up with a wide variety of styles and shapes for bags, and a lot are readily available for you to choose from
  • They are surprisingly durable as the canvas is a plain-woven fabric with fibres that can flex and adjust to the weight, size, and shape of the items you carry inside.
  • They are pretty versatile and can be found in many different bag styles.
  • They require very little maintenance. Most can be quickly and safely tossed in a washing machine.
  • Canvas is an eco-friendly option and is often used instead of plastic, especially for shopping.
  • They can be rendered waterproof through special methods.


  • Canvas is more for casual looks and won’t work in a more formal setting, nor would they look that good with formal business attire.
  • They are not as strong as leather.


Both canvas and leather bags have their own pros and cons. Depending on how you plan to use the bag, either of these two is a good choice. That said, if you need an everyday bag for casual use, for your daily commute, school, or shopping, canvas bags which are relatively more economical and lighter, are a better option. Of course, not all canvas backpacks and messenger bags are made equal, so you should choose one from a brand that’s known for its quality and durability. 

Troop London is your best source of canvas bags in the UK. If you are interested in canvas backpacks or any other type of canvas bags, for that matter, check out our awesome collection today!