When it comes to protecting your laptop, there’s always the option of buying a sturdy laptop bag. But sometimes, you want something a little more lightweight and more svelte. We’ve focused on relatively thin sleeves, rather than heavyweight cases, so you should still be able to toss your laptop into a bag or backpack for extra storage. This way you’re not limited to buying a specific bag. Here are some of our favorites.
Best All-Rounder: EveCase Diamond Neoprene Travel Bag ($15)
The EveCase Diamond Neoprene Travel Bag gets right to the heart of things. Most of the time you don’t need something that will protect your laptop from a huge shock, you just need something that covers the risk of scratches, bumps, and minor drops, and you want something slim and lightweight for the task. That’s this sleeve to a tee. It has padded foam with a cushioned interior, while still being thin enough to slip into your bag or briefcase. It’s also water resistant.
There are different sizes available with prices ranging from $10 to $20, so there’s sure to be a match for you. If you blew your budget on your laptop and need a solid and economical sleeve, this is it.
Best Hidden Gem: Nacuwa 360 Laptop Sleeve ($13)
It’s easy to assume you need to spend a lot to get a great laptop sleeve. The Nacuwa 360 Laptop Sleeve bucks that trend. It’s a shock-resistant case that has reinforced corners so it can withstand more drops than most. The zipper design makes it easy to access to your laptop and its USB and charging ports, without needing to pull the device out of the sleeve much.
Additionally, there’s a carrying handle and large side pocket, which makes this sharp looking sleeve even more functional. It’s competitively priced too at $13 for 13″ or below laptops and $19 for 15″ devices.
Best Briefcase Style Sleeve: Case Logic 15.6 inch Laptop Attache ($18)
A sleeve should be slim and tight fitting to your laptop, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for one that looks a little like a briefcase. The Case Logic 15.6″ laptop attache is one of the most versatile picks here. It’s still lightweight and fitted, but it offers a sturdy pair of carrying handles, and some additional pockets too.
Besides a padded laptop compartment, it has an internal divider for keeping your documents separated from other items in your bag. A front pocket panel is great for tossing in small items like pens, while a larger front pocket fits your chargers. Padded handles or a removable strap ensure this is comfy to carry around, while looking professional.
Best Protection: Thule Gauntlet 3.0 ($50)
No laptop sleeve will protect your laptop quite like a heavy-duty case like, say, a plastic hard-side case from Pelican, but if you’re keen to use a laptop sleeve and want serious protection, the Thule Gauntlet 3.0 is a good alternative.
The sleeve offers a rigid exterior with enhanced corner and edge protection. A padded interior ensures that your laptop is protected from bumps and scratches, and doesn’t slide around inside the sleeve. Finally, the clamshell design means you can use it from within the case, offering a little extra protection for those times you crack open your laptop on a commute or away from your desk.
It’s not crushproof by any stretch of the imagination, so don’t expect it to survive rough handling on a construction site. However, if you’re looking for a very tough laptop sleeve this is it.
Most Stylish: Picaso Lab Classic Sleeve ($69)
Not all laptop sleeves have to look alike. The Picaso Lab Classic Sleeve is one of the most stylish options out there. Handcrafted specifically for each customer, the sleeve is exclusively for MacBook and MacBook Pro laptops (although we suppose you could get by with a nearly identically sized ultrabook) and it looks a delight.
It’s made from premium Nappa leather in California, with a wool-lined interior that keeps your laptop softly protected. On account of the snug construction have to worry about your laptop slipping around inside. Nor will you have any issues holding onto it. Ultimately though, it’s the fact that this sleeve oozes class that will make you want to purchase it. It’s expensive compared to our other picks but the construction quality and detailing are fantastic.