Let’s Compare Fanny Packs! Patagonia vs lululemon vs Uniqlo

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I shouldn’t be surprised that fanny packs have become popular once again. I embraced them as a kid (a sign of my old age), and with the fashion circle of life running its course (AH ZABENYAAAA), they’re back on everyone’s radar. While they’re not the prettiest of accessories, gosh darn they’re practical! A lot of these bags are designed to be worn as belts or on the hip, but being the hard core rebel that you know me to be, I much prefer these crossbody (or bandolier style).

lululemon jumper (sz US 6 – AU linkUS linkCA link), lululemon tights (sz US 4 – AU linkUS linkCA link), New Balance sneakers (also here)

If you’re looking for a well-priced sporty bag to accompany you on your runs / hot-girl walks / off-duty shenanigans, I share my thoughts on 3 of the most popular practical bags on the market ranging from $20 to $60 (yep – all affordable!).

Let’s get crackin!

#1 – Patagonia Ultra Light Hip Pack

I’ve had this bag in my life for the past few months now and it’s been getting some solid use as one of my go-to errand running bags. On days I work from home, I’ll drop the kids off at school and day care on foot in the morning. I’m almost always in activewear and I’ll throw this bag on to house my wallet, keys, phone and a small shopping bag to hold any groceries I pick up on the way home. 

It weighs in at less than 100g but it still manages to pack a punch when it comes to features. With a comfortable adjustable web strap and padding at the back which adds noticeable structure and comfort when worn (particularly when I’m walking briskly home and the bag is bouncing up and down on my chest). 

woman wearing patagonia ultra light hip pack in blog post featuring review of fanny packs and belt bag

One of its niftiest features is the fact that the small zipped compartment serves as a stuff sack and it can be stored away in its own pocket when not in use – great if you’re travelling lightweight with limited space. 

Personally, I think it’s excellent bang for buck considering the quality and the fact that it’s made from 100% recycled fabric. It retails for $50 AUD and comes in a host of colours. 

In a nutshell:

  • $50 AUD / $35 USD
  • Weighs 100g 
  • 1L volume capacity 
  • Made from 100% recycled fabric. 
  • Can be stored its in own pocket when not in use. 

Shop the Patagonia Ultra Light Hip Pack here, here and here


#2 – lululemon Everywhere Belt Bag – 1L

One of the newer bags in my collection, I’ve had this on my radar for a while given how popular it is. Now that I’ve had a proper chance to use it, I can definitely understand why! The internal mesh compartments are a stand out feature for me and make this bag really easy to use. There’s a place for everything and it’s great to know the bag stays tidy if you utilise the compartments. 

woman wearing lululemon everywhere belt bag in blog post featuring review of fanny packs and belt bag

It’s available in a host of different colours, and also comes in a larger 2L version if you carry more than just the bare essentials with you. The adjustable strap is thick and sturdy and it’s made from a water resistant polyester fabric. One thing worth noting is the zipper to the main compartment wraps around the sides of the bags, so if you do wear this crossbody and you’re getting something out of the bag, you’ve got to be cautious of your smaller knick knacks falling out of your bag. If you use the mesh compartments it won’t be a problem. 

In a nutshell:

  • $59 AUD / $38 USD
  • Weighs 185g 
  • 1L volume capacity 
  • Internal compartments. 


#3 – Uniqlo Round Mini Shoulder Bag

Let’s wrap things up with the most cost effective option of the bunch. This bag retails for $20 AUD and has the most capacity in comparison to the first two bags I’ve featured. It’s available in so many colours and I’ve honestly seen it everywhere. Unlike the first two bags, it can’t be worn as a belt bag, instead it has a half moon shape with an expandable base which allows it to carry a lot – it can fit a 600ml water bottle with no issue.

woman wearing uniqlo round mini shoulder bag in blog post featuring review of fanny packs and belt bag

I’m not sure on precise volume capacity but it’s definitely more than the Patagonia and Lululemon bags. While the bag is incredibly lightweight, the bag lacks structure which I do miss. Things move around freely in the bag and if you do pack it with a lot of things, you need to be strategic with how things are placed otherwise it can be rather uncomfortable to wear. The structural issues only came to light with using the bag so I figured it was worthwhile mentioning if that’s something you factor into your decision making. 

In a nutshell:

  • $20 AUD / $20USD 
  • Weighs 95g
  • Expandable base / half moon shape = maximises capacity


I hope you found my belt bag review to be helpful. As always, thanks for stopping by! 


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