If you’re going to fork over thousands of your hard-earned dollars for a Hermès Birkin bag, at the very least, you should learn about the various handbag sizes. That way, you’ll have a basic understanding of how much stuff you can put in there, if at all.
Birkin bags come in 7 distinct sizes: 25, 30, 35, 40, 42, 45, and 50. These figures correspond to the width of the handbag.
In this guide, I’ll briefly explain the history of this handbag brand and what sizes it comes in. I’ll also provide a brief chart detailing the dimensions of Birkin bags to help you quickly figure out which bag is right for you.
A Brief Glimpse Into Birkin’s History
The origins of the Birkin handbag are shrouded in mystery and coincidence. Even before the Birkin bag, Hermes had made a name for itself as a manufacturer of high-quality leather goods for the affluent. Today, Hermès is now known for being one of the most prestigious luxury handbag design houses, partly due to the immense success of the Birkin bag line.
Legend has it that the idea of the Birkin bag came to be when Jake Birkin, an English-French actress, sat next to Hermes’ CEO, Jean-Louis Dumas. While seated next to Dumas on a first-class trip to London, the contents of her handbag spilled out and landed all over Dumas. While assisting her, he joked that she needed a new bag. She semi-joked that Hermes needed an everyday bag that was large enough for a busy mother, and this sparked a brilliant idea in the CEO’s mind.
A year later in 1948, Hermes released its first Birkin bag, named after the multitalented actress, was released to the public. Its spacious design solved Jane’s airplane travel problem, as well as made it the perfect everyday handbag for fashionable women everywhere.
Birkin Bag Sizes
The Hermès Birkin is the most prestigious of all luxury handbags, and the difficulty of actually acquiring one from an actual Hermès store only adds to its mystique. Different Birkin bag sizes are available to meet a wide range of demands and purposes.
Hermes makes Birkin bags in 7 distinct sizes—25, 30, 35, 40, 42, 45, and 50. These figures correspond with the widths of the bag. Let’s take a close look at each size individually:
The Birkin 25 is also known as the “Baby Birkin” or “Mini Birkin” for being the tiniest Birkin bag of the lineup. It measures 25 × 21 × 13 cm (9.5 × 8.25 × 5 in.).
In response to the rising demand for smaller handbags, this newest member of the Birkin family is a miniature version of the original. Though compact, it’s roomy enough for a day’s worth of necessities and can easily double as an evening bag when the occasion arises.
Birkin 25s have a 6-cm (2.4-in.) drop in their handles. Most people will have trouble getting the bag past their wrists, though this depends on the size of your arm. Birkin 25 fans, however, think the bag looks only classy and demure when carried by hand.
The Birkin 30 is 30 × 23.5 × 16 cm (11.5 × 9 × 6.25 in.) This size is perfect for toting around your necessities on a daily basis. If you only need to transport a tablet or a laptop that is 12 inches or less in screen size, this bag will still serve its purpose as a work bag.
However, it can be difficult to fit work documents in a Birkin 30. Despite the rise of the mini bag and the release of the Birkin 25, the Birkin 30 remains a top pick for many fans because it strikes the perfect balance between being neither too small nor too large for everyday use.
Starting with the Birkin 35, you’re looking at more than an everyday bag. It measures 35 × 28 × 18 cm (13.5 × 11 × 7 in.) and has a handle drop of 10 cm so that you can stuff your entire arm through the handle loops. It serves double duty as a laptop bag and a carry-on for flights. Some people like to use it as a shopping bag because its large capacity can accommodate quite a few of their purchases.
Hermès’ Birkin 40 tote bag is the largest in the brand’s lineup. It measures 40 × 33 × 21 cm (16 × 13 × 8.25 in.), which is the ideal size to use as a carry-on bag or as a “catch-all” bag for shorter trips. Whatever you can place inside the massive Birkin 35, you can store in your Birkin 40 with a bit more room to spare.
If you want a bag to sling over your shoulder, the Birkin 42 is your best bet. It measures 42 × 24 × 18 cm (16.5 × 9.5 × 7 in.). It’s shorter than other Birkin sizes, but it can be used to store and transport a wider range of objects.
This is the second-largest bag in the Birkin lineup. The measurements are 45 × 31 × 45 cm (17.7 × 12.2 × 17.7 in.) and can hold more of your clothes and toiletries. It’s a weekender bag of sorts, but it also makes for a fashionable gym bag or shopping bag.
The largest Birkin bag you can get your hands on is the Birkin 50, which measures 50 × 43 × 27 cm (19 × 17 × 10.5 in.). If you’re looking to go away for the weekend, or if you want to bring a few more of your belongings while running errands, you can’t go wrong with the biggest Birkin bag available.
Birkin Bag Size Chart
|Size||Dimensions (cm)||Dimensions (in.)|
|Birkin 25||25 × 21 × 13||9.5 × 8.25 × 5|
|Birkin 30||30 is 30 × 23.5 × 16||11.5 × 9 × 6.25|
|Birkin 35||35 × 28 × 18||13.5 × 11 × 7|
|Birkin 40||40 × 33 × 21||16 × 13 × 8.25|
|Birkin 42||42 × 24 × 18||16.5 × 9.5 × 7|
|Birkin 45||45 × 31 × 45||17.7 × 12.2 × 17.7|
|Birkin 50||50 × 43 × 27||19 × 17 × 10.5|