Is Handbag the Same As a Purse

Are handbags and purses the same thing? The answer to this question is not a simple yes or no. While they are both bags that hold personal belongings, there are some key differences between these two types of bags. In this blog post, we will explore the differences between handbags and purses, as well as discuss when each might be appropriate to use.

Differences Between Handbags and Purses

The Size

When it comes to handbags, size does matter. Purses are typically small, handheld bags that are used to carry essential items like keys, ID, and a few dollars.

On the other hand, handbags are larger and designed to hold more items, such as a wallet, cell phone, and even a small tablet. In addition, handbags often have multiple compartments and pockets to help keep everything organized.

While purses are still popular, many women prefer a handbag’s increased storage space and organizational features. As a result, handbags have become the go-to choice for carrying everyday essentials.

The Strap

One of the most obvious differences is the size of the straps. Handbag straps are generally much wider than purse straps, which can range from being barely there to being only slightly wider than the bag itself.

There are a few reasons why handbag straps are usually wider than purse straps. First, handbags tend to be larger than purses, so the wider strap helps to distribute the weight more evenly.

Second, a wider strap is more comfortable to wear for extended periods, especially when the bag is loaded with items.

Finally, a wider strap is less likely to break than a thinner one, which is important since a broken strap can render a bag unusable. Whether you prefer a handbag or a purse, choosing one with a strap that suits your needs is important.

The Material

Why are handbags made of sturdier materials than purses? The answer lies in the purpose of the two bags. A purse is meant to carry lighter items such as a phone, wallet, and keys.

On the other hand, a handbag is designed to haul around heavier things like textbooks, an extra pair of shoes, and a make-up bag.

Consequently, manufacturers use stronger handbag materials to prevent them from ripping or tearing under the weight. In addition, many handbags also have reinforced straps and handle to further increase their durability.

So, the next time you’re debating between a purse and a handbag, remember that the sturdier construction of a handbag is meant to accommodate your heavier belongings.

The Number of Pockets and Compartments

Handbags usually have more compartments and pockets than purses. This is because handbags are designed to be larger and to hold more items. They often have a zip closure and may even include an external pocket or two.

Purses, on the other hand, are typically smaller and have fewer compartments. They often have a snap or magnetic closure and may only have one internal pocket.

So, a handbag is the way to go if you’re looking for a bag that can hold all of your essentials. But if you’re looking for something that’s more compact and easier to carry, a purse may be a better option.

The Type of Closure

When choosing a new handbag, it’s important to pay attention to the type of closure it has. Zippers and snap closures are common on handbags, but purses may rely on drawstrings or magnetic closures.

Each type of closure has its own advantages and disadvantages. Snap closures are very secure but can be difficult to open and close.

Magnetic closures are easy to use but may not be as secure as other types. Drawstrings are simple and elegant but can be hard to keep tightening. Ultimately, the right closure for you depends on your personal preferences and needs.

The Usage

Handbags and purses serve different purposes, though they are often used interchangeably. Handbags are designed for specific activities, such as business or travel.


They are typically larger than purses and have straps or handles to make them easy to carry. Purses, on the other hand, are more general-purpose accessories. They come in various sizes and styles and can be worn for casual and formal occasions.

While handbags are typically more expensive than purses, both can be found in various price points.

When choosing between a handbag and a purse, it is important to consider the intended use. For everyday use, a purse may be the best option. However, a handbag may be more appropriate for special occasions or specific activities.

The Price

When it comes to prices, there is a big difference between purses and handbags. Purses typically cost less than handbags, with prices ranging from around $20 to $200.

Handbags, on the other hand, can cost anywhere from $500 to $5,000. The price difference is due to a number of factors, including the materials used, the brand, and the size.

Purses are usually made from cheaper materials like polyester or nylon, while handbags are made from more expensive materials like leather or suede.

In addition, designer brands typically charge more for their handbags than for their purses. Finally, handbags are usually larger than purses, contributing to the price difference.

Regardless of the reason, it’s clear that there is a significant price gulf between purses and handbags.

Final Word

The terms “handbag” and “purse” are often used interchangeably, but there are some key differences between the two. Generally speaking, a handbag is larger than a purse and can be carried over the shoulder or in hand.

A purse, on the other hand, is smaller and meant to be carried inside another bag or held in one hand. Handbags also often have more compartments and organizational features than purses.

If you’re looking for a bag that can carry all your essentials, a handbag might be the right choice. A purse may be better suited for your needs if you need something small and compact for everyday errands.

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