9 Types of Paper Bags and When to Use Them

From brown lunch sacks to branded merch bags, there’s a perfect paper bag for every occasion.

Paper Bag


When it comes to your business, a paper bag isn’t just a paper bag — it’s an opportunity to offer customers utility while putting your brand on full display. Since Francis Wolle invented the first machine to mass-produce paper bags in 1852, an incredible variety of options have been developed and improved upon for commercial use.

We’ve put together a guide to nine of our favorite types of paper bag, and all the ways your business can put them to use.


Paper Bag1) S.O.S. Bags

The S.O.S. bag is the preferred lunch carrier of children and office workers the world over. Recognizable by its iconic brown color, the S.O.S bag stands on its own so that you can fill it with food, drinks, and treats easily. Perfect for toting small items, S.O.S. bags come in a variety of colors for a touch of modern flair.


2) Pinch-Bottom Bags

The wide-top construction of the pinch bottom bag allows it to remain open while being loaded. With a tapered end, envelope-like seal, and grease-resistant glassine lining, it makes for an ideal packaging solution for baked goods.


3) Merchandise Bags

Merchandise bags offer a dependable, stylish way for customers to bring home their in-store purchases. With some customization, you can add a branded touch — whether you’re a small business owner or an event planner looking for an eye-catching container for your party favors.


4) Euro Tote

Think of the euro tote as the lunch bag’s sophisticated cousin. High-end retailers often use euro totes as their branded merchandise bags, adorning them with customized designs and branded logos. With ribbon handles and glitter embellishments, they make great alternatives to traditional gift packaging.


5) Bakery Bags

Bakery bags are crafted specifically to protect your food products. With glassine and wax paper linings, these bags preserve the taste and freshness of perishable items, making them perfect for bread, cookies, and even coffee.


6) Party Bag

Celebrate birthdays, bachelorette parties, and other special occasions by filling party bags with sweets, gift cards, and other mementos. Your guests will love going home with an aesthetically pleasing bag full of keepsakes.


7) Mailing Bags

Envelope-style mailing bags are perfect for sending important documents and small products. With their extra layer of protective padding, they’re an ideal option for shipping fragile items to customers or business partners.


8) Recycled Bags

With the rise of e-commerce, consumers and retailers alike want to do everything in their power to reduce their carbon footprint. Recycled bags — made with environmentally-friendly materials — can help us all go green, and can even be reused for other business needs.


9) Vogue Bags

The vogue bag makes for an elegant alternative to plain paper. Filled with fun tissue paper and a handwritten card tucked inside, vogue bags can take your gift wrapping operation to the next level.


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