Transparent Beauty: Top Clear Handbags for Every Occasion

Written by: Jed Nugal

Clear, see-through, transparent—whichever name you prefer, there’s no doubt clear handbags are a fantastic go-to accessory. The most common use for these trendy bags is for attending professional football, baseball, or select basketball games. They’re also practical for concerts and festivals where there may be a clear bag policy.

Most stadiums have a clear bag policy, which means attendees must use a see-through bag that falls within specific size and design requirements. Beyond game days spent snacking on hot dogs and cheering for your favorite team, a transparent bag is a wonderful fashion accessory that elevates your style.

Here, we’ve discovered and reviewed the top clear handbags for every occasion. When considering the best one for you, think about size, extra embellishments, and type. When we say type, we’re referring to whether it’s a tote, crossbody bag, backpack, etc.

Your choice might limit where you can wear the bag—but, you can always purchase a few clear bags to keep your options open!

What are see-through bags called?
See-through bags are also called clear bags, plastic bags, vinyl bags, and transparent bags. However, the type of plastic used differs from bag to bag, and it isn’t always vinyl.

Top clear handbags for every occasion

Without further ado, let’s take a look at the best clear handbags you can find online.

Best clear purse for game day at the stadium - Margo Paige Cut Out Crossbody

Kicking off this list is our very own Margo Paige cut out crossbody transparent bag. Just big enough to fit everything you need for the big game, and definitely not bulky like a beach tote.

A chic chain accent and a modern pattern make this a timeless accessory to take on all your outings. Bonus points for being environmentally friendly.

Dimensions: 11” x 3.9” x 9.8”

Why we love it:

  • GRS certified materials
  • Faux detailing eliminates the need for animal products
  • Stadium-approved bag
  • Mid-size pattern for your essentials

Best clear bags for concerts and festivals - Margo Paige Clear Backpack

Most concerts and music festivals require lots of walking, dancing, and standing. Wearing a crossbody bag might give you sore muscles on one side of your body, and a mini purse/tote just isn’t practical unless there are lockers available at the venue.

How else will you show off your dance moves and mingle with the crowd when you’re holding onto a tote? The triangle shape of our clear backpack is reminiscent of a sling bag (and you can wear it like one), but it’s designed to be a comfortable backpack for all-day events.

Dimensions: 11.41” x 5” x 11.81”

Why we love it:

  • GRS certified materials (recycled PU)
  • Compliant with most stadiums and venues
  • Comfortable, all-day wear
  • Stylish, faux leather details


Best clear bag for date night - Margo Paige Semi-Circle Crossbody

Whether you’re going on a first date (good luck!) or celebrating an anniversary with your partner, you want to look and feel special. You want to wear something that shows off your personal style and gives your outfit that extra something—that’s where this crossbody bag comes in.

Plus, you can wear this as a wristlet, shoulder bag, or crossbody bag. The versatility your closet needs! Just the thing for someone looking to build a capsule wardrobe or someone wanting to invest in quality, ethically-made accessories.

Dimensions: 9” x 2.7” x 6.6”

Why we love it:

  • GRS certified materials
  • Versatile design; can be worn several ways
  • Snap pockets for easy access
  • Compliant with most venues

Best transparent bag for nights (or days) out with friends - Margo Paige Clear Fringe Crossbody

When you go out with your best friends, all you really need is a cute outfit and a “Yes” attitude. It’s always a good time, and whatever you do need to bring, you can fit into this petite crossbody bag.

The eco-friendly fringe detail is oh-so-cute with a little bit of edge—a chef’s kiss for women who love to mix hard and soft elements in their personal style. And, you can finally show off that stylish wallet or phone case in this small crossbody bag!

Dimensions: 8.5” x 5.5”

Why we love it:

  • GRS certified materials
  • Accepted by most stadiums and venues
  • Petite size for phone, keys, and your go-to lipstick
  • Fringe and details available in taupe or black

How to choose the best clear bag for you

Not all clear handbags are made equal. Our buying guide will help you narrow down your selection.

If you’re looking to purchase a clear bag to bring to a stadium, this will be your biggest filter. The NFL’s website requires the bag to be 12” x 6” x 12” or smaller. The same is true for MLB games and most school stadiums.

With this size requirement, most backpacks, duffels, and beach totes are automatically eliminated from your list if you’re looking to buy a transparent bag for the stadium.

There are a few types of bags that might fit your bill:

  • Purse
  • Tote bag (Hobo, beach, shopper)
  • Crossbody bag
  • Shoulder bag
  • Clutch
  • Wristlet
  • Bucket bag
  • Oversized beach bag
  • Handbag (bowler, golfer, baguette, trapeze)
  • Backpack

Smaller bags are best for stadium events, but backpacks and totes are ideal for bigger outings and outdoor events. Think pool party, day trip, picnic, tailgate, etc.

Crossbody bags, mini shoulder bags, small handbags, and wristlets are best for nights out and exploring the city during the day. These are also (subjectively) the most fashionable options for everyday wear. They can be worn on top of almost any outfit, which is always a plus when adding something new to your wardrobe.

When considering a transparent bag for a large public event, embellishments can make or break your choice. The NFL prohibits any buckles, logos, and hardware that might conceal something in your bag. That’s why it’s best to go with clear bags without prominent logos or any additional materials on top like mesh, embroidery patches, or netting.

Keep in mind that some decor accents might also be difficult to clean. For instance, animal leather needs regular maintenance, certain metals might discolor over time, and delicate fabrics may only be spot cleaned.

For a go-to clear bag you can use every day, choose a clear bag with durable, easy-to-clean materials like TPU.

What’s the difference between PVC, PU, and TPU?

Whether or not you’re trying to switch to a more sustainable lifestyle, it helps to know what materials go into making your everyday accessories. Here, we’ll break down why the choice of material matters in a clear bag.

What is a polymer?
We’re no experts by any means, so we’ll keep this all basic for everyone’s sake! PVC, PU, and TPU are all types of polymers. But just what, exactly, are polymers?

All plastics are polymers, which are substances made of repeating chains of molecules. Think of them as hoops strung together to form a long chain or garland.

Depending on the type of molecules that make up a polymer, the resulting plastic can have varying qualities: flexibility, durability, softness, touch, etc. Some common synthetic polymers you may be familiar with are polyester, nylon, epoxy, and Teflon (non-stick coating).

However, polymers can come from naturally occurring sources like wool, rubber, cellulose, and DNA. These are called natural polymers or biopolymers. So–when shopping for transparent bags, you’ll likely come across “PVC,” “PU,” or “TPU” in the materials description.

Here are the main differences between the three material types.

Polyvinyl Chloride plastic (PVC), aka vinyl, is much stiffer than other types of plastics used for clear handbags. Since it’s such a strong plastic, it’s commonly used in construction, plumbing, and other heavy-duty applications.

However, PVC has gained a bad rep over the years due to the additives used during manufacturing. Objectively, this bad rep may be deserved. The list of dangerous additives includes lead, phthalates, and cadmium.

Additionally, PVC releases a toxic chemical called hydrogen chloride when it’s heated. While not all clear PVC bags are made with toxic additives, it’s helpful to be informed about what comes into contact with your skin, especially if you live in a household with children or pets.

Polyurethanes (PU) is is the umbrella term for all man-made polyurethane plastics. Without getting into too much technical detail, urethane pieces link together to form chains, hence its name.

While PU is recyclable, only advanced PUs are biodegradable. Even then, recyclable PUs may only be broken down into lesser-quality components that may not be suitable for human use.

Besides clear handbags, PU is used for furnishings, appliances, electronics, and other apparel.

Generally, thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU) are the best types of polyurethane. A TPU bag is durable, elastic, see-through, and abrasion-resistant. Best of all, it is recyclable and biodegradable (about 3 to 5 years).

Its versatility and flexibility make TPU a hybrid between rubber and plastic. Besides high-performing shape and feel, TPU also absorbs shock and can rebound from impacts.

No surprise then that TPU is commonly used in power tools, medical devices, automotive parts, and sporting goods.

Other plastic types used for clear transparent bags

These are other plastic types you might come across:

Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS): This plastic is generally safe as low as it’s not exposed to heat. It’s the same plastic used for LEGOS.

Polycarbonate (PC): This is a strong plastic used in food-grade products like frozen food packaging.

Best material for clear handbags
Generally, thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU) are the best types of polyurethane. A TPU bag is durable, elastic, see-through, and abrasion-resistant. Best of all, it is recyclable and biodegradable (about 3 to 5 years).

Its versatility and flexibility make TPU a hybrid between rubber and plastic. Besides high-performing shape and feel, TPU also absorbs shock and can rebound from impacts.

No surprise then that TPU is commonly used in power tools, medical devices, automotive parts, and sporting goods.

How do you clean transparent bags?
Most clear bags are made of easy-to-clean plastics like TPU and PU, which can be wiped down with a soapy, non-abrasive towel and mild detergent. Smaller messes can be usually cleaned with wet wipes.

Some clear bags with more delicate materials like leather may only be spot cleaned with a dry cloth or microfiber wipe.

Related Questions

Why do people wear clear bags?
People wear clear bags to attend sports games, concerts, and other large public events. Many stadiums and venues have a clear bag policy to help enhance public safety. Other people wear clear bags because it’s easy to identify and retrieve what you need from a see-through bag versus an opaque bag.

Plus, clear bags are always in style—no need to worry about coordinating with color when you can throw on any outfit and walk out of the house with your transparent bag.

Are transparent bags trendy?
Yes, see-through bags are trendy and, dare we say, timeless! From luxury brands like Marc Jacobs to streetwear design studios like Off-White to sustainable boutiques like Margo Paige, transparent bags are cropping up all over the fashion world. What makes them trendy is their versatility in styling, from retro-inspired to modern chic.

What counts as a clear bag?
According to the NFL, a clear bag must be see-through with no mesh, buckles, hardware, or embellishments that cover up parts of the bag. Briefcases, camera cases, laptop bags, mesh bags, oversized totes, patterned plastic bags, and non-approved seat cushions are not permitted inside stadiums.

Additionally, your clear bag must be 12” x 6” x 12” or smaller. If your bag contains any interior pockets made of canvas (or other opaque material), then you may be turned away at the doors. Ensure that everything inside can be easily seen and searched by security.

Read more about stadium-approved bags and policies in our FAQs section.

What material is best for transparent bags?
The best and most sustainable material for transparent bags is thermoplastic polyurethane or TPU. It is durable, yet flexible, non-toxic, recyclable, and resistant to scratches. High-quality TPU is also biodegradable.

What is a GRS-certified clear bag?
A Global Recycle Standard (GRS) certified bag means it is made of materials that meet international standards for “recycled content, social and environmental practices and chemical restrictions.” This certification is voluntary and indicates that a company is dedicated to providing good working conditions for its employees, using sustainable materials, and operating under environmentally-friendly practices.

Final Thoughts
Looking for a handbag that’ll take you from game day to date night? A transparent bag is at the top of our list! With so many styles and sizes available, it can be difficult to choose the best one for you. During your search, think about the size, type of bag, and embellishments a bag has, especially if you’re searching for a bag you can take to stadiums and venues. When in doubt, a small backpack, crossbody bag, or shoulder bag will be your best best. We hope you discovered your next favorite clear bag here or at least helped you filter out the good from the best.

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