A good MacBook bag shares many qualities with a MacBook. We want it to be tough, so it needs to be made from good materials. We want to use it for multiple tasks, so it needs to have plenty of pockets and compartments. (And let’s admit it, with the diminishing number of ports on the MacBook, the bags often have the edge.) And since we all admire good design here, we certainly don’t mind if the bag looks fantastic.
Plus, whatever MacBook you’ve got, Air or Pro, you’ve probably spent enough on it that you don’t want to risk it breaking – and don’t mind spending just a little more to keep it safe.
There’s no shortage of companies out there that make protective accessories for MacBooks, from laptop bags and rucksacks to sleeves, covers, and cases that clip on directly, and plenty of them do their best to be just as stylish as the Mac they’re protecting.
We’ve rounded up a selection of our favourite cases, sleeves, backpacks and bags for the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, whether you have a 13-, 14- or 16-inch model, to keep your Mac safe.
All of the bags below fit those criteria, but we’ve been careful to choose bags that meet specific needs. Keep in mind that every bag here won’t fit every MacBook, but if a bag can’t handle the 16-inch MacBook Pro, we’ve been sure to make a note of it.
1. Case Logic Laptop Sleeve
Case Logic make lots and lots of laptop sleeves that are suitable for various sizes of MacBook and come in all number of colours. The Case Logic Laptop Sleeve fits a 13.3in MacBook, such as the M1 MacBook Air or M2 MacBook Pro.
It’s form-fitting, so the MacBook shouldn’t slip about inside, and it features padding for extra protection. There is woven webbing along the sides to further protect the laptop and strengthen the case. It’s a slim case that should fit nicely inside your bag.
2. Case Logic Bryker Backpack Roller
If you’d prefer not to carry your laptop in a bag on your back then this is a great solution that offers a telescoping handle that retracts into zippered compartment and padded storage for a laptop up to 15.6-inches.
3. Speck SmartShell
If you want to protect your laptop while you are using it you can pop a clear or tinted case on it. The Speck SmartShell case comes in various sizes to suit different MacBooks. There’s clear cases as well as different colored options, including cosy pink, obsidian and clear variant for the M2 MacBook Air, shown here, so you can pick one to suit your personality.
4. UAG Plyo Case
Some shell cases are built to do more than give your MacBook a bit of color. A number of manufacturers build hard shell cases that will add an extra layer of protection to your MacBook Pro or Air.
UAG (Urban Armor Gear) makes impact resistant armour for your MacBook. The Plyo series has extra strength built into the cushioning corners and cooling vents to ensure that there is adequate airflow (to stop your laptop from overheating).
5. Thule Gauntlet Attaché
If you are looking for a briefcase style bag with a solid construction, a good option is the Thule Gauntlet attaché. It’s a slim and rugged case with enhanced corner and edge protection. There is a single, removable shoulder strap as well as handles. You don’t even need to remove the Mac from the case to work.
6. STM Judge Shoulder Bag
STM’s Judge laptop bag will fit up to 16-inch MacBooks. It comes in brown, blue, green or gray.
The bag is designed to protect your laptop by suspending it, so that it doesn’t touch the bottom of the bag. It’s also encased in foam. The shoulder strap is easy to adjust and has a pad to make it more comfortable. Inside there are sections to help with organisation and there’s also a small bag inside that STM call the Stash which is a bit like a pencil case.