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Best sling bags 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]Last Updated January 1, 2020
Best sling bags of 2018
There is a wide range of products available on the market today, and below I have reviewed 3 of the very best options. I must say I am quite a fan of sling bags, so when the question “What are the best sling bags available on the market?” came to my mind, I excitedly started gathering information together with personal experience to write this article in the hope that it may help you find the suitable sling bags. We’ve narrowed down our options based on the customer feedback (read positive reviews), functionality, material and size. In other words, we’ve put all fundamentals into consideration to come up with a comprehensive list that suits various needs. The best sling bags will make your fairytale dreams come true!
Test Results and Ratings
Why did this sling bags win the first place?
The material is stylish, but it smells for the first couple of days. I really enjoy the design. It is compact, comfortable and reliable. And it looks amazing! I don’t know anything about other models from this brand, but I am fully satisfied with this product. I am very happy with the purchase. It is definitely worth its money. The product is top-notch!
№2 – WATERFLY Chest Sling Shoulder Backpacks Bags Fashion Cute Crossbody Rope Triangle Rucksack for Hiking or Multipurpose Daypacks for Man Women Lady Girl Teens
Why did this sling bags come in second place?
I like this product. For such a low price, I didn’t even hope it to be any better. It’s decently made. Managers explained me all the details about the product range, price, and delivery. The design quality is top notch and the color is nice. The material is pretty strong and easy to wash if needed.
№3 – WATERFLY Chest Sling Shoulder Backpacks Bags Fashion Cute Crossbody Rope Triangle Rucksack for Hiking or Multipurpose Daypacks for Man Women Lady Girl Teens
Why did this sling bags take third place?
I liked the design. We’ve been using it for 2 months and it still looks like brand new. I hope that the good reputation of the manufacturer will guarantee a long-term work. It doesn’t squeaks nor bents. Looks great in my apartment. This price is appropriate since the product is very well built.
sling bags Buyer’s Guide
Action Oriented: The Capital is the gym bag for the minimalist who can get by with just the basics, or for the outdoorsman who doesn’t need all the heft of a backpack for their trail runs. The adjustable strap absorbs the shock of movement without transferring it to your body, avoiding that sense of carrying rocks as your body gets more drained between energy gel hits.
Grab Bag: The Hub doesn’t offer a load of adjustment straps that allow it to turn into a half-dozen other kinds of bags, it’s a sling and little else. The whole build is to meant to facilitate easy reach while being worn so that you can get to your notebook and pens, your ID card, or your pistol without breaking stride. Comfortable for all day wear, once you adopt it, you’ll feel naked without it.
Aer Sling Bag
Gym Rat: No longer must those of us who prefer a healthy life full of sweat and motion be forced to carry oversized, unprofessional duffels. The 1680D ballistic nylon body is more than a match for the rigors of everyday life, and with separate compartments for clothes and shoes, keeping smell where it belongs is as simple as zipping it up.
Keep Pursuing KP
Bushcrafter: 1000 Denier Cordura and Ripstop nylon, coupled with water-resistant zippers and treatment are what make up the KP slingbag, proving that bold things come in small packages. The central pocket is padded for your gizmos, with a secret stash spot precisely sized for passports lurks in the lining for anyone heading into the third world.
Arc’teryx Slingblade 4
Changeling: The Slingblade can be used as a crossbody bag, a regular shoulder sling complete with quickdraw pockets, or carried in hand as a ordinary knapsack with your GORP and water bottle. Meant primarily for outdoor trekking, behind the plain exterior lurks the heart of a business shark with lots of pockets and pouches for easy organization.
Wanderlust: A handy item for the jet-setter, this works as your carry-on bag, a daily traveler for packing along your basic necessities for a day of sightseeing, or can be repurposed as a shaving kit should you need that. Not one to go quietly into that good night, the Slingpack has Mil spec webbing beneath ballistic nylon and Duraflex accessories for a little Ooh-Rah wherever you may roam.
Any Given Day: Part messenger, part briefcase, all stylish-yet-functional canvas, the Agger can be adjusted to work over either shoulder, go around your body, across your back, or do each one in turn as your day progresses. A padded laptop sleeve can take a 13” machine safely, without scratching or scraping, no matter what else you throw into the other pockets.
Waist belts are a great option for any photographer seeking a more ‘hands-free’ way of carrying their kit. Simplicity is the key and so you’ll find that there are essentially two main options available to you – fixed-capacity storage and modular arrangements.
Taking the first option, this is exactly what it sounds like. To oversimplify, think of a bumbag design but with great protection for your gear and you won’t be far wrong. Key features include padded internal dividers, a zipped lid and even mesh pockets on the outside. With a main buckle fastening at the front attached to a comfortable waist belt, some models also offer the option to be worn as a sling over the shoulder.
Perhaps the biggest selling point of waist belts as a whole is the fact that all of the weight of your gear is transferred to your hips. This means less fatigue on your shoulders over the course of a long day out in the field, not to mention quick access to your kit while on the fly.
The shoulder bag is perhaps the most popular option for many photographers. Tried and tested over the years, its design offers a combination of practicality along with robustness. Usually, there is also great scope for customising the internal compartments thanks to Velcro-attached, non-abrasive dividers, which are generally light and quick to reposition.
Things to look out for in particular include a strong, comfortable strap, durable zips with decent rain flaps and a practical grab handle on the top. Also, take a look underneath to make sure you get some form of ‘feet’ studs which will will do a good job of raising the bag off the ground just enough to keep moisture at bay.
Because this is one of the most popular categories of bag, you’ll find that it is also one of the most variable in terms of design. While a lot of features are shared (multiple pockets for accessories, pull-out waterproof covers etc), the physical appearance varies greatly – so there is bound to be a bag to suit your preference, whether it be a classic travel-reporter style or state-of-the-art ballistic nylon.
The use of photography backpacks has grown tremendously over the past few years, and it’s not difficult to see why. They have the distinct advantage of offering fantastic functionality along with increased capacity – perfect for anyone heading out and about for a photo trip, whether it’s just for the day, a weekend or longer.
As you might imagine, there’s a wide range of sizes available to satisfy all needs. Whether you want to carry a small camera (for example, a Compact System Camera) along with a packed lunch, waterproof clothing and accessories, or a full-on professional DSLR outfit and tripod, you’ll find many shared features which will make your kit carrying experience as comfortable as it can be.
Some backpacks have even bridged the gap into rolling cases, too, with discreet built-in wheels ready to go whenever the need arises – perfect for anyone who finds themselves heading across airport or railway concourses en route to their photography adventures.
Ok, so now we’re into slightly different territory. Rolling bags are definitely not going to be for everybody, but they do have one clear advantage – they completely remove the necessity to carry heavy kit on your shoulders. Again, this can make a huge difference over the course of a long day, not to mention if you have pre-existing back complaints.
As discussed above, there are models available which offer ‘occasional backpack’ functionality, and as you might imagine, these sport a tough nylon construction, complete with tuck-away straps. Some rolling bags actually look like traditional shoulder bags, so if this is your design of preference they’re well worth considering.
Picking a bag for your tripod may not be the most obvious thought when it comes to building a camera system, but there are a number of reasons why it’s a worthwhile purchase – especially with prices starting at around the £mark.
Of course, you get the advantage of easy transportation for your tripod; most bags come with grab handles and/or a shoulder strap, and perhaps a small pocket on the outside. But more importantly, by using a bag you can ensure that your tripod stays in great shape – at least until it’s taken out for use on location.
The more basic tripod bags out there typically feature a single zip running full- or 3/4-length, but these typically do not offer any padding. The other main design to consider is one with a top zip which runs around the circumference of the bag. Some people say this offers quicker access, but it really is personal preference.
As you go up the price range you’ll find that padding comes as standard. Understandably, this can make a great difference to the tripod over the course of its life, protecting it from all manner of unfortunate scrapes with abrasive surfaces. It goes without saying that padding also improves the comfort for the user.
At the more technical end of the scale, some tripod bags are equipped with all manner of features including backpack-style harnesses, accessory pockets, multiple grab handles and even wheels for easy transportation.
While many of today’s cameras benefit from improved moisture protection (thanks to effective seals around certain key areas on DSLR bodies and lenses, for example), when the weather really takes a turn for the worst, it isn’t worth taking the risk of dodging showers and hoping for the best while out and about.
No matter whether you’re using a small DSLR with a standard kit lens or a professional wildlife/sports setup with a 600mm long lens, there’s a cover to suit your needs.
Designs vary, of course, but there are a few features which are shared by most offerings. Typically, the cover will be of a nylon pull-over or zip-up construction, often featuring a drawcord which allows secure fastening around the front of the lens. On some models, you’ll also find a Velcro fastening here too, which does a great job of ensuring maximum protection from running water.
At the camera end, you have a choice of a drawcord fastening (which allows the camera back to be exposed if you so wish) or a completely tight seal, thanks to a compatible eye-piece which essentially allows the user unobscured use of the viewfinder. An alternative option here is also a simple clear cover arrangement which, although it falls over the front of your camera’s eyepiece, does offer a good level of protection.
As for controlling the lens/camera controls, some covers offer more flexibility than others. For example, as well as the main ‘body’ of the cover, some models feature sleeves for you to put your hand/forearms through; both elastic and drawcords are typically used for creating the weather-proof seal.
With some designs offering a modular approach (you can attach different lens covers to the body cover, for example), there is also an option for those who might want to venture out with a flashgun attached to your camera. Again, this component tends to be of a one-piece, see-through construction, so there is no loss of light output when the flash does fire.
As you can probably tell by now, once you have chosen your bag, very often the personalisation process doesn’t simply stop with arranging your kit into the various pockets and compartments of the base unit. Rather, there’s a whole host of accessories available which will allow you to customise everything from the type of straps you use to additional pockets which seamlessly fix onto designated attachment points.
If you choose a shoulder bag, for example, some manufacturers offer systems whereby you can remove the whole of the interior in one go – dividers and all – and switch it for another. This is especially handy if you shoot with two systems.
If you decide to take the hard case with foam-padding route, for example, there are replacement foam sets available. As I highlighted above, you really need to be sure of what’s going in that box before you start pulling out the padding; that said, sometimes it’s just not possible to future-proof your decision.
IN THIS ARTICLE
WHAT This was created to store both bottles and breast pumps in one cooler bag. Two compartments let you stash all sorts of accessories and pump parts, while a waterproof, dirt-resistant outer layer makes it durable and easy to maintain. The fully insulated inner padding keeps milk cold for up to hours.
WHAT Spacious and versatile, this carrier is a discreet way to carry all the equipment you need to express your milk. You can carry by hand, use the shoulder sling, as a backpack, or attach it to your stroller. Made from a strong, long-lasting material, it boasts a waterproof and insulated lining.
PARENTS SAY You’ll enjoy easy access to the contents, especially when you’re busy with your baby, thanks to the wide opening. It’s also large enough to hold most breast pumps and all its parts. Though the design is very basic, we like the versatility offered by the different ways in which we can carry it.
WHAT Simply collapse the cooler bag, pop it into the freezer for hours and it’s ready to use! Fits six bottles ― the tote handle makes it easy to carry around. The built-in cooling panels will keep your milk chilled for 1hours.
PARENTS SAY You don’t have to deal with ice packs or messy condensation with this spacious cooler bag. Although it’s expensive, you know you’re paying for something reliable. You can easily use it to transport food and drinks for outings and picnics when your pumping days are over.
Pumping mums will love this portable BPA-free cooler set that will keep your breastmilk cool and safe. Comes with four Medela storage milk bottles ― very handy! ― and a contoured ice pack.
PARENTS SAY This is probably the cooler bag you’ll want to go for if you are using a Medela pump. It’s compact and portable, and the ideal fit for four Medela storage bottles. The ice pack ensures that your bottles of milk won’t go tumbling around the bag. However, some mums wish that it’s slightly bigger, especially the mums who express more than twice a day might find this bag a bit too small.
Shoulder Camera Bags
These can be split into two types – the traditional design with dividers and exterior pockets, and the more modern messenger style that can be worn across the chest or on the shoulder. Many messenger bags have moveable inserts to accommodate your camera gear, and some also offer dedicated space for a laptop, tablet, or often both. The Manfrotto BeFree Messenger is one such bag – with space for a tablet, plus the brilliant addition of a pocket to store a Manfrotto BeFree Tripod.
The shoulder bag is a good choice for working from – they enable you to have a camera and lens on one shoulder and your bag on the other. They’re not so great if you have heavy equipment however, as all the weight is concentrated on one side.
Belt Bags and Camera Pouch Bags
Belt bags are designed to be attached to your belt or to a dedicated belt system. They are modular in fashion, with some brands even supplying bottle bags as well as camera cases – they’re like the Swiss Army Knife of the camera bag world. Examples include the Lowepro Street and Field system and the ThinkTank Belt range. These are great for really quick access to a limited amount of gear, and are especially useful if you are working in fast-moving environments – such as running along a touchline for example.
Backpack Camera Bags
Camera backpacks are the bag of choice for most photographers, as they enable lots of gear to be carried easily and with the weight evenly distributed. Many pro photographers work with a backpack and then two camera bodies – one over each shoulder with different lenses on. The range of backpacks is huge, with varying capacities and protection levels available. The Vanguard VEO 4Backpack can carry a vast array of equipment in a relatively small package, and has a particularly useful tripod pocket and front-facing camera/lens pocket for quick access to your gear.
The Lowepro Photo Classic BP 300 AW in Mica
Lowepro camera bags are especially well known among wildlife and nature photographers for their weatherproofing, and have recently launched some extremely well priced backpacks including the Lowepro Photo Classic BP 300AW which combines some rather nice looking styling with convenience – and can store a deceptive amount of kit.
The Urban Disguise Classic 60 V3
ThinkTank’s great range of bags are especially lightweight and blend in well. The Urban Disguise range is designed to not stand out from the crowd – with the idea of security in mind – but retains some panache in doing so.
The VEO 3shoulder bag
Vanguard provide some well designed bags including the Vanguard VEO 3Shoulder Bag, which has a separate section for one of their VEO compact tripods – a truly innovative solution meaning tripod carrying becomes much less of a hassle! Their Supreme range of hard cases are a strong competitor when looking for ultimate protection of your equipment.
Billingham 33in Imperial Blue & Tan
Billingham are a world renowned brand offering a blend of traditional materials and innovative design. Their bags are on the higher end of the budget spectrum, but their quality and style carries great appeal. The Billingham 33in Imperial Blue and Tan is a particularly attractive and eye-catching member of their range.
The Tamrac T060Stratus Shoulder Bag
Tamrac bags and cases include a wide range of traditional and messenger bags as well as backpacks. Tamrac also supply great value lens cases to protect your precious glass. The Tamrac T060Stratus is a good solid shoulder bag with accessibility and organisation in mind.
Remember when everybody used to wear vests? Have you noticed that many more people are now switching to carrying their gear in a sling pack? Well, there are good reasons for this.
First and foremost, many people simply find it easier to organise their kit in a pack, rather than on a vest. Instead of going through multiple pockets trying to find stuff, with a pack everything is together and easier to see.
In addition, if you are lucky enough to live in a part of the country with hot weather, wearing a fishing vest in the Summer can be too hot. Having your gear on your hip, or slung from your back, means that it is not making you sweaty.
If you are looking to swap to a pack, it is worth reading up on the differences between a waist, chest, or sling pack. Each has their own advantages, but for our money a sling pack permits you to reach your gear the easiest.
Fishpond Summit Sling Fly Fishing Pack
This is a great all-round sling pack for fly fishing, offering all the features you would expect of a sling pack of this price, and was only beaten to the top spot in our review today because it lacks just a few of the innovative features of the Fishpond pack.
If you were looking to design a solid sling pack for fly fishing, our bet is that you would look to this one. It offers a great range of storage compartments, from small to large, and all of them are easily accessible even when you have rod in hand.
First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.
Most important, have fun and choose your sling bags wisely! Good luck!
So, TOP3 of sling bags
- №1 — Kipling Alvar Solid Crossbody Bag
- №2 — WATERFLY Chest Sling Shoulder Backpacks Bags Fashion Cute Crossbody Rope Triangle Rucksack for Hiking or Multipurpose Daypacks for Man Women Lady Girl Teens
- №3 — WATERFLY Chest Sling Shoulder Backpacks Bags Fashion Cute Crossbody Rope Triangle Rucksack for Hiking or Multipurpose Daypacks for Man Women Lady Girl Teens