A fashionable handbag is one of the biggest fashion statements a woman can make. And a tote bag style, with its larger, structured shape, is a classic that never goes out of style.

Another tote bag perk is its design, making it quick and easy to toss items into it and go! Whether you use a tote as a beach bag, laptop carrier or weekend travel bag, every woman should have one (or two) tote bags.

The top 5 tote bags I’ve highlighted are iconic. They may be higher in price point but worth the splurge. But don’t worry, below each featured tote is a selection of similar styles in different price ranges, colors and sizes. You’ll find that some are elegant and dressy, while others are casual or downright beachy.

When selecting a tote bag, have some fun. It’s a great handbag style for taking a little fashion risk with by selecting a bolder-than-you’re-used-to color or selecting one with dramatic shapes, fun prints and graphics.

#1 Michael Kors Jet Set Bag, on sale $181.52

hot pink tote bag by Michael Kors | 40plusstyle.com

This bag is a signature Michael Kors accessory and one of the more elegant ones on this list. Michael, always tanned and ready to go in his easy sweaters and aviator sunglasses, is known for his effortless, sporty yet elegant jetsetter style. And this bag personifies it. This is a great weekend travel tote or a good one when you’re feeling a little dressier or preppy in style. The best part is, it comes in a rainbow of colors which would make it a crime to choose brown.

Here are some other elegant tote options:

#2 Ted Baker Playful Poppy Large Tote, $59

Ted Baker folding tote bag | 40plusstyle.com

An easy to fold and pack, low-maintenance PVC tote that is perfect for shopping or a beach day. The print is bold and graphic in tones that go with nearly any look.

Here are some other low-maintenance and portable tote options:

#3. Sophie Anderson Adorada Raffia Tote, $214.29

Round raffia tote bag by Sophie Anderson | 40plusstyle.com

How’s this for a statement bag! The round shape and colors is bound to catch anyone’s eye. Don’t be afraid to mix a beachy, raffia tote with an every day outfit. You’ll be delighted to see how great a tropical tote looks with a jeans, t-shirt and cardigan look. Try this one with a long, summery maxi dress in white and a fun sunhat.

Here are some other tropical, raffia tote options:

4. Nike Formflux Tote, $175

Nike urban-chic tote bag | 40plusstyle.com

This is the perfect tote for the urban 40+ woman on the go. Multipurpose for busy city life, it can go from meeting to gym to the airport. The long strap is perfect for converting it into a cross body bag.

Here are some other urban-chic tote options:

5. Kate Spade Ridgefield Street – Katarina Leather Tote, $428

Kate Spade's elegant statement tote with a scarf detail | 40plusstyle.com


My favorite part of this quintessential, ladylike tote bag by the brilliant Kate Spade is the way the scarf is integrated into the design. Ladies, steal this look! Have a classic bag you love but want to give it new life? Tie a lovely, colorful neck scarf to the handle. This is a great statement tote for elevating your effortlessly chic look.

Here are some other structured and lady-like tote options:

Which of these tote bags fits your personality and look best?

Til next time, Cynthia.

P.S. Want to learn how to accessorize like a pro? This month in the 40+style club you will learn how accessories can make a huge difference to your style. Find out how to pick the right scarves, bags and shoes and join the style challenges! The club is now open for enrollment!

Want to get more articles from 40+style in your inbox, subscribe here.

You can also connect with 40+style on Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest.

Support 40+style by using the links in our articles to shop. As an associate for Amazon and many other brands, we receive a small commission (at no cost to you) on qualifying purchases which enables us to keep creating amazing free content for you. Thanks!