Fashion People in Paris Rely On This One Timeless Handbag to Look Chic

How would you define what's "chic"? While the visible definition of the term may vary based on fashion choices, one can't argue that, on the whole, this word has been largely diluted. In our digital-first era, the desire to keep up with trends can sometimes get in the way of being, well, actually chic. We're all guilty of getting caught up in what's going viral rather than investing in what will still look good weeks, months, and even years from now. In those moments, it's wise to recount the words of the late French couturier Yves Saint Laurent: "Fashions fade; style is eternal." Of course, saying a mantra is nice, but living up to the ethos is another challenge—hence the need to start small. You don't build personal style in one day. You start by investing in small anti-trend basics over time.

So what staples are the simplest to invest in first? Accessories. It's the easiest way to elevate your look without buying an entire new wardrobe. More specifically, handbags are where the magic lies. Not only can a bag make or break your look, but the right one can also stand the test of time and even accrue value. But with so many different types of purses, it can be hard to discern what's worth your time, so I turned to the masters of chic—the French fashion set—on your behalf. After scouring many Paris runway shows and social media, I can safely say that the most prevalent style is the crocodile handbag. It does not matter if it comes in a specific color, shape, or price point. This style remains relevant with the Parisian set despite other bag trends

Part of its continued popularity has to do with so many variations of this bag you can buy, from bags made from true exotic materials to vegan leather to croc-embossed leather and so on. But really, it's because it's the one type of bag that can embody the term "chic."  If that seems like a grandiose statement, you'll want to keep reading, as I've rounded up the 49 best crocodile bags at every price point. Plus, I included visual references from the French set to further the point. Prepare to see the embodiment of chic in purse form. 

best crocodile bags, image of a French woman wearing blazer, jeans, and brown croc bag



The compact crossbody bag is made 10 times chicer simply by its faux-crocodile material. 

Everything about this Tory Burch bag is posh—from its compact top-handle shape to the logo-adorned hardware to the beige-hued croc-embossed leather. 

Saint Laurent's crocodile bags make for a sound long-term investment. 

Just when you thought Luar's signature Ana bag couldn't get any cooler, it comes in this navy crocodile hue. 

Pro tip: You can make even the most affordable purses seem like they're on the pricier side by purchasing one in a faux-croc material. 

The color alone of this Chloé mini bag has me sold. 

This butter-yellow crocodile bag from Poppy Lissiman has me drooling. 

best crocodile bags, image of a French woman wearing blazer, tank, shorts, and croc bag



H&M was in its bag with this one (pun intended). 

Demellier's trapezoid-shaped tote is the ideal investment for those looking to give their work bag an upgrade, as it's spacious enough to fit a laptop and downright chic. 

There are so many things about this Charles & Keith bag that make it a great investment. It's available in two other colors, comes with an adjustable handle that allows it to be styled as a shoulder or handbag, and is under $100. 

The forest-green hue of this Burberry bag whispers "money." 

Brandon Blackwood aces the assignment every single time. 

She's not a regular tote; she's a cool bag. 

best crocodile bags, image of a French woman wearing sweater, jeans, and red croco shoulder bag



You can't beat this price point. 

All of Themoirè's bags are made from sustainable materials, so you can rest assured that no animals are hurt in the process of creating your bag. 

Take styling inspiration from the French set and spice up a monochrome outfit by pairing it with a white croc bag. 

Staud knows the way to a girl's heart. 

Not into the color beige? You can also shop for this sculptural shoulder bag in black and white.

Shedding tears over this Mark Cross bag—did it need to be *this* beautiful? 

best crocodile bags, faux croc purse, image of a French woman wearing croc tote and wool coat



One way you can make this classic handbag feel more trend-forward is by opting for a version in a unique hue, like the avocado-green one above. 

A crocodile bag is already sophisticated in and of itself,  but this Jil Sander bag takes it to a whole new level. From the croc-embossed leather to the kiss-lock hardware to the contrasting black bamboo handle, everything about this bag is positively chic. 

Searching for an affordable purse that feels trend-forward? Look no further than this Vince Camuto bag that features some of the most stylish details of the moment—faux croc, buckle hardware, and even a crescent shape.

You may not be able to spend the evening wandering through the streets of Paris, but you can feel like you are by styling this croc-embossed clutch with a little black dress.

The wood hardware on the strap of this crocodile shoulder bag is a tasteful touch. 

best crocodile bags, image of a French woman wearing off-the-shoulder top and black croc bag



I don't know about you, but I can definitely imagine a Parisian sauntering by the Seine with this bag in tow. 

Just because crocodile bags err on the more polished side doesn't mean they can't be edgy. Case in point: the studded Steve Madden bag above. 

You can style this Mansur Gavriel bag as a crossbody during the day or a clutch for an evening out on the town. 

There are numerous faux-croc options on the market, but if you find that you do want to invest in an animal-skin handbag, then there's no better option than this Ferragamo bag.

best crocodile bags,  image of a French woman wearing croc shoulder bag with knit vest and jeans



The crocodile bags from BY FAR continue to be beloved among Parisians. 

Mini-bag enthusiasts, this is all you. 

The ombré effect adds a fun touch to this otherwise classic handbag. 

The chain handle takes this sleek shoulder bag from simple to stunning. 

Anima Iris is a Black-owned luxury label that works with artisans in Senegal to create each of its stunning handbags. 

It doesn't get more joyful than this violet-hued croc crossbody bag from Kate Spade.

best crocodile bags, image of a French woman wearing pleated top and croc bag



Bucket bags are a perennial favorite among the French fashion set.

Please stop scrolling for a moment to admire this Jacquemus bag. The shape, the color, the handle… It's eye candy

PSA: You can also shop this DKNY flap bag in black and forest green. 

The color? The shape? The price tag? No misses here.

Ever since Mulberry and Axel Arigato released their collaboration, I've been unable to stop thinking about this shoulder bag.

Recently released, Jimmy Choo's Avenue bag will surely become beloved among the French fashion set in no time. 

Clearly, I'm a fan of forest-green crocodile bags. Can you blame me? 

The pairing of crocodile leather and a bamboo handle always looks luxurious, no matter how much the bag actually costs. 

Make your secondhand designer-bag purchase even more worthwhile by investing in a crocodile bag.

The number of crocodile bags you can buy—both brand-new and secondhand from affordable and luxury brands—is proof that this bag has staying power. So why not invest in it for the long haul by securing this Celine bag? You won't regret it.