A man purse is an all purpose bag or satchel designed to be carried and used by men. It tends to be somewhat larger than a lady's purse, partially to eliminate confusion between a man's bag and a women's hand purse. The bags are quite handy, allowing men to carry an assortment of necessary belongings throughout the day without having to use an informal backpack or an overly formal briefcase. Several designers offer variations on a man purse.
As a general rule, a man purse has a single large strap so that it can be slung over the shoulder. The larger size often accommodates a laptop, large books, or necessary files and papers. One common variant on the man purse is a messenger bag, a type of bag commonly used by bicycle messengers and postmen. Messenger bags can be quickly accessed because they have wide openings, making them very convenient for people in a hurry.
When a bag is consciously designed as a man purse, it is usually kept simple, so that it will be unobtrusive on the wearer. Men's bags can be made from nylon, leather, cotton, and canvas, just like women's, but they tend to be designed in more subdued colors and styles. If the bag does feature embroidery or a design, it is usually in the form of the manufacturer's seal or logo. Extraneous buckles, zippers, and straps are also kept to a minimum.
Although some people find the concept of a man purse laughable, satchels for men can be extremely useful, and some women use them as well. The large size accommodates a range of items which would otherwise have to be carried by hand or in an assortment of awkward bags. Objects like wallets and cell phones can be stored in inner pockets so that they will not destroy the line of a nice pair of pants, while the user can also store things he or she might need to use over the course of a day.
A good man purse will have a wide, sturdy strap so that the wearer can carry a heavy bag. An inner pocket is often extremely useful for small items, to ensure that they do not fall to the bottom of the bag. The design can range from a casual messenger bag to a more formal bag which may be appropriate for more situations, and the bag should also be strong, with reinforced seams and solid stitching. If the bag is going to be used to carry a laptop, additional padding is strongly recommended to insulate against shock.