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The kids go back to school next week and among the items on that school supply list is probably a new backpack. There are so many to choose from, but which ones are the best? Here are the top five.


The North Face
This backpack survived being tossed, stepped on, beaten up, and watered down. It boasts a host of smart designs including bungee secured water bottle holders and it’s great for organizing books, notebooks, pens, pencils and whatever else your kid needs to carry. It’s best for ages 13-18, comes in five colors and retails for $89.
L.L. Bean
If your kid can’t cram all their crap in this backpack, you need to do some major decluttering. It has two large sections for textbooks and notebooks, and a front stretch pocket for lunch sacks and water bottles. There’s even a place for tennis shoes! It’s best for ages 13-18, comes in seven colors and retails for $70.
Simple doesn’t mean they skipped the details. There are three sections in this one to keep the subjects separated, and a lot of specialized features like a hook for cleats. It doesn’t have a lot of padding on the shoulder straps, so it could make long days less comfortable. It’s best for ages 13-18, comes in 11 colors and retails for $35.
Pottery Barn
This backpack has tons of organizational space and lots of compartments. There’s even space for electronics. It’s made of durable polyester and survived torture tests like being dropped, abraded and spilled on. It’s best for ages 8-12, comes in 19 patterns and retails for $45.
It’s made of some pretty tough fabric, has one large compartment and one smaller pouch. It can easily handle 10 pounds of books, notepads, file folders, food, sneakers, art supplies, pens, markers and pencils. It’s best for ages 8-12, comes in 10 colors and patterns and retails for $30.