There are lots of reasons that handbags are one of the most important product categories in the entire fashion industry, but one of the most important ones is that a woman’s bag is almost always one of the most noticeable aspects of her day-to-day wardrobe. Shoppers love them because the right bag has unmatchable power when it comes to elevating a look, and that also means that bags tend to spark spontaneous conversations with other women. Some do it better than others, though.

Of all the bags I’ve ever had, my Céline Luggage Tote probably got me the most attention from random strangers, even though I sold it after six months because I just didn’t love it. That was in early 2011, during the bag’s biggest boom of popularity, and I had paid for my bright red Luggage Tote six months in advance, sight-unseen in order to secure one from Kirna Zabete. I got a couple full-on gasps from strangers, in addition to wonderful service in luxury department stores who assumed I must be a dedicated customer in order to get one of the bags. One woman on the street in Soho even asked me if she could touch it because she thought she might never get another opportunity. (I let her.)

Lately, the winner has been my Mansur Gavriel Bucket Bags, partly for the same reason that the Luggage Tote did–the bags are hard to track down, and for a time, people were very excited to see one in the wild and wanted to pick my brain about the best way to get one for themselves. (“I shop for bags for a living,” is never a satisfying response when someone asks me how I got a bag, but it’s the only one I have.)

When it comes to men paying attention to my bags, for some reason, their all-time clear favorite was my Marc Jacobs Stam. I’m still not entirely sure why straight dudes were so fascinated with it in particular, but a very memorable first date in college actually asked me to hand it over so he could examine it up close. My theory: it had something to do with the weaponized possibilities of its signature chain.

So, now we want to know: which of your bags turns the most heads?

P.S. Please consider supporting our small, bag-loving team by clicking our links before shopping or checking out at your favorite online retailers like Amazon, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, or any of the listed partners on our shop page. We truly appreciate your support!

Share Your Thoughts With Us

  • Nene

    I am not a bag-snob. I have many nice Gucci, Ferragamo, Dior and Fendi handbags. But, there are 2 bags for which I have gotten the most compliments over the years. They are both Tory Burch – one is the studded leather satchel purchased in 2009 and the other is the Megan embellished tote bag that I purchased in 2008. I rarely carry either these days, but when I do, I am stopped continually by both men and women who admire my TB bags. I love the fact that Tory is a “contemporary” bag designer and can produce such striking bags with reasonable price points.

  • Kari

    My fendi monster bag with a bag bug attached. Lots of attitude.

  • Aly

    Probably my Chloe Marcie Satchel

    • Blondissima777

      I get lots of compliments on my nude Celine Phantom, especially if the “wings” are all the way out. My sand colored Chloe Marcie Satchel is the runner-up.

      Usually my shoes steal the show, cause I’m a shoe nut 1st, bag nut 2nd.

      I just got these lace-up flats from Nine West in black and people comment on them left and right. They would give my beige Valentino Rockstud caged flats a run for their money and my white Aquazurra Christy flats wish they got this much attention. Who knew???

      After reading this post, I realized I need to buy more “fun” bags.
      Haven’t bought one in years!
      Thanks for inspiration, everyone! :)

  • AAAA

    It’s funny, but I receive far more compliments on my contemporary bags (mostly Tory Burch and Kate Spade) than on my designer bags (Chanel, Gucci, Balenciaga, etc.). I have a Kate Spade bag from the Spring 2015 collection that is pink and scalloped on the top. Every time I carried it I would receive compliments. I suppose the premium designer bags I carry have a more classic look, whereas when I buy contemporary bags I will go with quirkier looks that stand out to people.

    • Suzanne

      I hear you – I’ve got my eye on one of the Kate Spade holiday bags that I imagine will get attention.

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    • Sherri

      Exactly my experience! I had a woman actually physically stop me in the mall a few years ago carrying my Tory Burch fox print tote! I could not take that bag anywhere without someone going crazy over it! My premium designer bags get compliments here and there, but they tend to be much more subdued and classic and just don’t get the same kind of attention.

  • WP

    The most compliments was also the luggage tote for me. Especially since it’s not your typical beige or black (even though I looove both), I have it in Orage. I was at Nordies and the sales associate complimented it and reached out to pet it (she didn’t ask first but i didn’t mind)

  • CatR

    My Marc Jacobs Stam! By men, too!! One even said the chain could double as a weapon, so perhaps that was where the interest stems? I’ve carried this bag for years so I’ve had many more options for compliments, but in more recent memory my classic Chanel flap gets lots of compliments.

    • Jenn

      Me too!! Always lots of comments back when I carried my Stam (and I owned several ;-)

      • CatR

        I have three! I get the most comments on my Mini Manhattan though…. It is a striking little bag and it is somehow edgy and timeless all at once.

    • Imgoingbroke

      Ha! True, the chain on the Stam is wicked heavy and would be a deadly weapon for sure! I love my stam, but it’s so heavy it falls off my shoulder so I don’t wear it any longer. Do you have the problem?

      • CatR

        I don’t have a problem with the chain being too heavy or falling off. I have later model stams (2009), and around this time they were being manufactured with hallow links on the chain and the little piece of leather in the middle of the chain. Both of these things make the bag a lot more comfortable than the very first Stams!

  • MLDella

    My Chanel Boy bag. It is black caviar with RHW. Maybe a little too edgy for a 47 year old who mostly wears sweats!

    • ratched

      Nailed it!

  • KloeF

    By far my Roberto Cavalli … I forget the name of the bag though. It is a mix of fur and python. Very unique, and stunning.

  • twirler

    my Chloe Paraty tends to get the most compliments, especially from people who have no idea who makes it or how much it costs. i think brand recognition plays a large role in this. i only carry bags with no, or extremely hard to see, labels, and thus most people on the street have no idea what i’m carrying. even in Manhattan, i would say it’s more rare than not that anyone could name my Bottega, Balencaiga, Proenza Schouler, etc. bags, as opposed to the Tory Burch and Michael Kors bags that are everywhere. but when people can appreciate a bag without knowing what it costs, it makes a compliment that much more flattering.

  • Riquita604

    I also get more compliments on my Mansur Gavriel black/flamma bucket bag than my Chanels, LV, Ferragamo, etc. The other bag I get compliments on is the Henri Bendel Jetsetter Convertible backpack. Mine is in red from 2014.

  • Kitty

    From random strangers I got the most attention for my black Céline mini luggage too!!! Even though I got it around 2 years ago. But I also got rid of mine too. My Céline black Trapeze gets a lot of attention. Also my Louis Vuitton Alma PM in pistache, the color draws people. And finally my Chanel chain around messenger from a few seasons ago, i think it’s a young bag so people like it a lot.

  • Jennifer McGee

    Like comments from earlier posts, I always get a lot of compliments on my Tory Burch bags, particularly my now vintage Amanda hobo (which I adore). Nevertheless, when I walk into a shop with a Chanel sales associates fall all over me.

  • My micro prada saffiano lux. People will say how cute it is, then ask what I could possibly carry in a bag that small.

  • Lisa

    My Alma BB in Pomme d”Amour vernis. Everyone loves a shiny red bag and the adorable size is also a crowd pleaser.

  • Taki

    For some reason, I always get compliment when I use my pastel handbags specially my Balenciaga city in purple pastel with gold hardware. :)

  • Jenn

    Stam, for sure. I had a few in very lush, vibrant colors. Also my Chloe “Ethel” satchels, mostly because of the color (plum). I also have an Ethel in gray (can’t remember exact color name) that people are always asking to touch (men included)!

    • Jenn

      ps. I still want that blue Celine above!! ????

  • gpc

    My Balenciaga Partition that I bought back in 2007! Passerby’s and department store sales associates all fawn over that bag. It is just so unique. It is probably my favorite bag of all time, even over my Chanel and Celine.

  • Amazona

    Men seem to be fascinated with my pink Love Moschino that has pictures of milk cartons on it, among other things. Maybe it’s because I usually carry it when I’m at a party or a bar?
    Fuchsia Longchamp Le Pliage Cuir and olive Mulberry Ledbury are other favorites – among women. The Leddie gets alot of “aaaww how cute!” and the LP “wow that’s a great color!”. Today, though, I took my new-to-me Alexander Wang out and noticed a couple of women almost reaching out to touch it.
    You must understand that I live in Finland, where expressing one’s emotions is highly frowned upon and talking to strangers is mostly limited to the absolute necessity (as in, the cashier at the grocery store, people at the workplace and family) so these are extreme reactions!

    • Jerri R

      Hi Amazona! It’s me Loverfield (remember the whole fur fiasco?):)

    • Pamela

      i would love to live in Finland i am the complete opposite of what you described

  • Sara

    LV Petit Noe red epi leather bucket bag!!! I’m surprised every time.

  • Suzanne

    The only bag I’ve ever had comments on is my Proenza Schouler PS11 tiny. I have PS1s, Chanel, Prada, AW, Jimmy choos, and a Celine Trapeze which I’ve since sold but none of em have ever motivated strangers to comment :-) I actually like it because I like to think my bags are inconspicuous.

  • Mine would be my Givenchy large Antigona Rotweiler shopping tote. Even though I have it for over 2 years I still get compliments from strangers till now.

  • Jimmy Lin

    CELINE PHANTOM black on black hardware … from the day i purchased till now ^^

  • FashionableLena

    Lately, my red Chanel Twist flap bag. Before that, my Michael Kors mini Collette. The bright yellow color is beautiful and striking.

  • Eura

    would say my Stella McCartney Superhero cross body bag from Resort 15!!!! Lot’s of children adore the bag and lot’s of guys exclaim how cool it is….My favorite line is “OMG did you make this!?!?!?” I love that nobody thinks it’s an expensive piece.

    • Julia

      Same here! Hands down most compliments from both women and men, and kids, haha! Had a kid fascinated by it at a café, growling and trying to make the same face as the bag, so cute! Also the same experience that nobody thinks it’s an expensive piece, love it. On the other hand I live in Sweden, and as Amazona wrote above, most of my more expensive pieces goes unnoticed/without comments :)

  • I get compliments on my Bordeaux Balenciaga Velo, mostly about the bag’s color. People also seem to like my olive green Proenza Schouler PS11, which was once featured here on the forum roundup. Back in 2011, I got a lot more reactions with my Luggage Tote, as its popularity was just starting then and it wasn’t as ubiquitous especially where I live.

  • kemilia

    My Gucci Babouska Tattoo Tote. Most of my other bags have no logos (BV, Bal) and on this one, it has the large red heart and flowers and “Gucci” painted on it–you cannot miss that it is a Gucci. Woman love it and comment, probably because it is screaming “Gucci!!” and it is a fun bag. My red Paddington gets compliments too, probably because of the color.

  • Hermes pour moi

    My tricolor ostrich birkin. Saffron, cognac and rouge vif trim. And it’s big – 40cm. I get loads of compliments!

  • Jerri R

    My mint-condition Givenchy minaudiere that was gifted to me decades ago.

  • Bir

    LOL a very old bag …………. A vintage navy Hermes Constance ! every time and it’s over the shoulder usually, it is beautiful!!!!! one person even asked if I could come with her to Hermes ( shopping ave. has hermes) we walked over and she asked the SA for the exact same one ……. SA response,sorry but they don’t make one gusset Constance anymore …… This person had a hard time with the vintage concept.

    my bag is beautiful but it is pretty amazing how much attention it gets considering it was made in 1971

    • Maddie Lee

      Would love to have such a vintage Hermes, sounds like a real beauty!

  • Rosa

    My LV Neverfull in the Stephen Sprouse Roses Edition: I could say that I get a compliment from strangers and even SAs every time I use it! I guess it’s because it both looks familiar and peculiar at the same time.

    • Vanilla_addict

      Indeed i have the speedy and it attracts comments :) lovely collection isnt it :)

  • Ruthie Gibson

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  • Tiffany

    When the Louis Vuitton denim line just came out, I was in the hunt for the monogram denim neo speedy. They were sold out in all the boutiques around my area. But I finally found one when I went to soho in New York ( it was the last one they had in the boutique that was on hold for someone, but they were late and haven’t pick it up) so the SA sold it to me. I was SOOO happy and excited to finally have my hands on one! I start using that bag right away, and everywhere I went, I received tons of compliments on that bag. And many women would just pass by me and look in awe at my bag. I have many bags like Chanel, Celine, Louis Vuittone, etc., but this speedy have the most attention I’d ever received!

  • ???

    My fuchsia Chanel classic flap, probably because it’s bright!

  • Scottsdale Kim

    Mansur Gavriel Black/Flamma Mini Mini Bucket. More compliments than Chanel, Celine, Hermes bags which floors me.

  • dinabobina

    Hands down my LV Empriente Artsy in taupe, always get compliments and then my simple Chanel GST black caviar.

  • klynneann

    I’ve been getting a lot of attention with my Fendi monster roll tote. Everyone loves the “face” on it and everyone seems to love the color too (green with yellow). The first three days I wore I received a compliment each day – each time from a guy! I think the guys love it more than the ladies. :)

  • Jess

    My YSL black patent leather downtown tote gets quite a few comments. It was funny actually. I wore it for ages when I first got it, nobody said a word. Then stopped wearing it, went back to it a few months later, and every Bob Jane Nick and Harry would comment! They still do to this day. It’s a good style that bag.

  • Laura

    I get the most compliments on my Valentino Rosier bag. It has silk roses and needs trimming occasionally. I have had people pet the bag!

  • Bag hoarder

    My new small be dior in black,yellow and a grey handle.
    I love it’s versatility.

  • Maddie Lee

    I have a Céline Mini Luggage, which I was lucky enough to stumble upon two years ago (I say stumble, but I had been searching for an all black mini luggage for 18 months, when I found a gorgeous tri-colour in Selfridges) and it’s my pride and joy. That always gets a lot of attention. Saying this, I have one of the Prada Saffiano’s with the double zip, and it seems to attract unwanted attention – I have had people ask if it’s real…

  • Bag hoarder

    The medium be dior ..not small as I posted before..just the perfect bag for me.

  • My most complimented bag is actually an oversized envelope clutch from London shoe co Miista. It gets multiple compliments every single time I take it out, even now that it is showing signs of age. I think its the color effect:

  • corrid

    My blue Goyard Ambassade, with blue and white stripes. It’s a very bright bag for a straight man to carry, so it gets a lot of attention

  • Png

    My Valentino Rockstuds Dome bag in “Taupe” color, received many compliments about its style and color.

  • Pamela

    Amanda-Do you regret not having your celine? or are you happy you sold it? Also I get A LOT of compliments from a $20 charming charlie bag that resembles bottega veneta and LOTS of people at stores compliment me. Hilarious because no one cares as much about other ones.

  • Sofakimou

    My Mansur Gavriel black backpack and bucket bags. 99% of people don’t know what they are and are really curious asking where they can get one. I’m like…errrrmmmm…these are a little tough to find xD Also have an amazing duffle travel bag from coach when they launched the new C design years ago. Tons of compliments.

    • Kali

      Totally agree. Men and women alike constantly compliment my Mansur Gavriel backpack. Although one older gentlemen stopped me to say, “my goodness young lady, that’s quite a bag. Reminds me of the rucksack I used to carry in WWII!” :S

  • Kelley

    My new jumbo Chanel black caviar double flap with silver hardware. But I live in Manhattan so I’m sure many think it’s a faux from Chinatown. I have a cute little Longchamp La Pliage (sic) leather bag I paid 100 pounds for in England in 2006 that gets compliments. Most compliments are given to my black smooth leather nano luggage. It’s that irresistible little monster face on the bag!

  • Imgoingbroke

    My Vintage Chanel Multi Color Graffiti extra large tote. I get so many compliments from both men and women of all ages when I wear this bag. I love it…it’s my fun summer bag.

    • She’s is a beauty! She totally deserves the compliments! :)

      • Imgoingbroke

        Thank you :)

    • Vicente Aguirre Barragán

      Is this bag from the nineties?? It´s gorgeoussss

      • Imgoingbroke

        Yes, spring 1998. Thank you!

  • Amanda

    People are literally blown away by my hand painted Etro flap bag~it’s the softest leather imaginable and the colors are to die for!!! It’s a one of a kind piece unlike my Lady Dior, Jumbo Chanel flap, Loewe, etc

  • Definitely my indigo Celine trapeze. The bright blue is gorgeous, and is usually the first thing people notice. Plus it’s surprisingly versatile.

  • BooBoo

    My tri-color Fendi Selleria Borghese. Three neutrals accented with black straps and gold HW, it looks great with everything!

  • Atlanta

    Race isn’t even close. It’s this vintage bag from Brahmin. Still in perfect condition.

  • Kiku

    mine has to be an unintentional givenchy pandora bag lookalike that i got for $80 at a department store. people just wanted to touch it!

  • Fatemah H. Mahsain

    Reed Krakoff Boxer. I got it before it became a huge trend, so a lot of people were askin about it.

  • Gottabagit

    While I have more LV than Prada, I think my Prada Saffiano totes get more compliments. My LV Vernis Alma Rouge Fauviste gets Its fair share of compliments though.

  • Vanilla_addict

    My Chloe Edith in whiskey gets compliments from strangers.. While my LV LE roses speedy as well as my LV rayures neverfull GM get complimrnts from work colleges and relatives. Finally i compliment my self the most loool recently when i wear my lauren merkin chloe backpack in bordeaux :) i just looooove this bag so much :)
    Vanilla_addict :)

  • MsTiff

    My black Tom Ford Alix bag is always a hit!

  • moxymojo

    Hands down my Mansur Gavriel collection. In particular, my mini bucket in black/flamma and my large tote, also in black/flamma. Literally, i have had quite a few stalkers (women AND men) following me around in shops and cafes, pretending to pass me by (several times) to read the brand label and i have to pretend that i don’t hear them whisper “Mansur Gavriel!” and to act like i don’t notice their gasps of awe. Some braver souls have approached me and asked how i managed to get ahold of the rare most sought after black/flamma bucket. I’ve even had a cafe owner tentatively ask my husband (he was looking at the menu on the blackboard behind the counter) if it would be alright to approach me to ask about my bag (like i was royalty! Just cos of the bag!).

  • I have a Dolce & Gabbana Lily bag that always gets the most compliments! I believe it is because of its beautiful crisp white grainy calfskin and its gold hardware! It gets more compliments than my Chanel bags!!

  • Mounandback

    My black le boy chanel, classic with a twist !

  • Melissa Banning

    My Hermes Evelyn GM III in gold gets the most attention- which I happily receive as I had to change continents to locate that color!!

  • The Beautiful Things

    hmm: i’d say i get the most comments on my celine beige phantom (strangers, sales associates, and family all are in awe), my fendi micro baguette/fur pom-pom bag charm (mostly sales associates saying that it’s so small and cute), and lastly, randomly, my alexander wang amber “spiral notebook” clutch (men seem to really like it!). i truly love all my bags, more or less at any given moment, but funnily enough, the ones i love most never elicit outright compliments! x

  • patchydel

    My black Celine mini luggage. I absolutely loved it as well but I ended up selling it because it is just so heavy! The second runner up would be my grey mini-Antigona.

    I have a friend who gets bombarded with comments when she carries her Mansur aAvriel buckets, but for me I actually don’t get any with that bag (with the exception of our male Sr. VP of Marketing!), but I notice it gets some looks.

  • As many gorgeous designer bags that I have, my Kate Spade Beau in poppy commands the most attention. 3.1 Phillip Lim Pashli is runner up, but it’s cobalt metallic so that’s pretty bold.

  • Dwightinha

    Lately my Saint Laurent black Chevron quilted flap bag with oxidized silver hardware, and Saint Laurent Sac de Jour in black embossed croc with silver hardware.

  • Nancy L. Stein

    So, Amanda, I too had the Celine nano bag, and I ended up returning it to Neiman’s for the reason that only the nano version of this bag has a cross-body strap, and I need a purse larger than the nano. Michael Kors came out with a gorgeous version of the Celine bags called Gracie. And the medium bag does indeed have a cross body strap. I only need to walk into a room and it creates a buzz, especially in the neutral dark tone that I have.

    The other purse that creates excitement is a Louis-Vuitton bag called Pallas. I have the large version. But my favorite is the Michael Kors or a Celine styles bag. For whatever reason, they have decided that only the small version needs a cross-body strap.

  • BagLady

    Saint Laurent Sac du Jour (Black, grained leather with gold hardware) gets a lot of compliments and its a lovely classic bag. For casual it would be my Goyard St.Louis PM in electric blue – which adds a pop of color to my typical B+W monochromatic clothes

  • Smooth Caramel

    my navy velvet boy bag gets a good amount. also a mini chanel scandanavian print one from teh recent salzburg collection!

  • Christine

    Givenchy small antigona in anaconda and my soufre B35 always have stranger stop me and compliment those beauties!

  • Candace

    My Gucci white Python shoulder bag. The bag is almost 10 years old but has held up well and is classic Gucci. I love it!!!

  • Melissa Robertson

    I get a lot of complements on my Coach Framed Carryall and my Juicy Couture Daydreamer bags

  • Kate

    I’m late to this discussion, but it’s a fun subject! I received a ton of compliments from random strangers on the street when I carried my antique blue Celine Phantom. I sold it because it was too big for me (and heavy and awkward, and I hated carrying it with the fires of a thousand suns), but it sure was a pretty bag. Nowadays my workhorse burgundy Antigona gets a lot of love. It’s the one I carry everyday to work, and I often forget that it’s actually a pretty cool bag.

  • Dell Q

    My Roxbury Drive in Pomme. It’s a candy apple red and a short-lived, now discontinued, LV.

  • GoldChanel

    My rose pink python skin Chanel Boy, gold hardware gets the most compliment.