18 Cute Back-to-School Backpacks for Kids of All Ages

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If a new backpack can do for kids what a new handbag can do for moms, I think we can all agree it’s time to brighten our little one’s days with some fresh gear for the new school year. I’m not saying retail therapy is always the answer, but who doesn’t remember the excitement of back-to-school shopping as a child?

With the new CDC school guidelines, it’s likely most of our kids will be in school in person this year. And there’s just something about a clean notebook, new kicks, and of course, the staple of all back-to-school supplies—the backpack—to set the right tone for the upcoming school year.

So let the back-to-school shopping begin—and check out our picks for the cutest preschooler and kids backpacks below.


Preschool Backpacks

Preschool backpacks are smaller sized for smaller frames. They should be able to fit a water bottle, a change of clothes, and other small items. Note that most might be too small to fit a standard 9 by 12 inch folder, so shop the elementary-sized options if you need that extra space.

Pottery Barn Kids

Green/Navy Stripe Brontosaurus Backpack

This durable and functional backpack comes with seven options for the patch, from a dinosaur or shark to rainbow or unicorn and more. It also comes in three sizes (mini, small and large) to fit kids of all ages.

Brown Girls Stationery

Mermaid Backpack

A kids backpack that's fun and functional, with a glamorous mermaid print, interior zip compartments, padded back panel, and adjustable straps.

Pottery Barn Kids

The Emily & Meritt Gold Unicorn Critter Backpack

With a monogram option to personalize and sizes mini or small, we love this adorable unicorn backpack for back-to-school.

Makeba Designs & Prints

Superhero Blue Backpack

Encourage your little superhero to take on any back-to-school challenge with this fun superhero-inspired kids backpack.


Cat & Jack Shark Mouth Backpack

This preschooler-sized backpack is as fun as it is functional with one main zip compartment and adjustable shoulder straps.

Pottery Barn Kids

The Emily & Meritt Bunny Critter Backpack

This mini backpack is perfect for the littlest of kids to hold a snack, a change of clothes, and their favorite toy. Or you can size up to the small, which will also hold small notebooks and school books.


Heroes Backpack

We love this unique design that makes it a backpack and lunchbox in one with a front zippered compartment that's insulated, easy-to-clean, and food-safe. It comes in four patterns.


Sleep No More Backpack

The animal designs on this preschool-sized backpack are as cool as they are cute, with tiger, zebra, and dinosaur options to choose from. Interior pockets and padded straps for kid comfort make this a favorite.

Herschel Supply Company

Kids Heritage Backpack

Perfectly preschool-sized for kids ages 3 to 4, this kids backpack comes in six colors/patterns and two other sizes (youth and youth XL) for older kids, too.



Kids Backpacks

From kindergarten and up, kids typically need more space to house folders, books, extra clothes/shoes, lunchboxes, and more. Here are some of our favorite kids backpacks to fit everything they need for school.


Kane Kids Backpack

Available in 28 colors, this kids backpack will fit a 13" laptop in the main compartment and a 17 oz. water bottle in the side pockets.

Bonus: For every bag purchased, STATE supports American children and families in the ways they need it most, from free virtual tutoring sessions to fully packed pack drops in the country’s most underserved communities.

back to school backpack
Skip Hop

Zoo Koala Backpack

Skip Hop's favorite zoo collection backpacks now come in a larger size for kids who need to fit their folders, lunchboxes, and more.

Other animals available!


Kane Kids Backpack

This kids backpack is machine washable, and it comes in 28 color options. Plus, for every bag purchased, STATE supports American children and families in the ways they need it most, from free virtual tutoring sessions to fully packed pack drops in the country’s most underserved communities.

dino backpack

Dinosaur Backpack

This dino-themed kids backpack is made from super durable fabric with a moisture-resistant nylon lining to last through the whole school year.


Flip Sequin Backpack

The sequins on this kids backpack flip from purple to teal for sensory fun. Plus, the interior fits full-size folder and two side pockets.

Pottery Barn Kids

Mackenzie Aqua Shine Backpack

Available in size small and size large, this metallic backpack is super cute and functional, made with water-resistant polyester and multiple zip compartments and side pockets for water bottles.

Blended Designs

Nicee II Backpack

Send your child off to school with an affirming "I can do anything" attitude with this kids backpack that comes in 3 sizes for preschoolers, elementary age, and older kids.

Shop boy's version here

Lands' End

ClassMate Medium Backpack

This classic backpack comes in 18 patterns—from rainbows and unicorns to outer space and outdoor creatures. With personalization available, your child can truly make it their own.

Preschool and larger sizes available too.

Herschel Supply Company

Kids Heritage Backpack

Available in three sizes for preschoolers to ages 8 and up, we love the timeless look of this kids backpack.

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