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Hands Down, These Are The Best Soft Coolers for Summer

written by BELLA GIL

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Source: Calpak
Source: Calpak

Believe it or not, a soft cooler isn’t just something your dad picked up from Walmart and stored in the garage collecting dust. Soft coolers are quite literally a summertime essential if you want to enjoy some cold drinks in the sand or have a charcuterie board picnic with the gals in the park. When choosing the best soft cooler, you’ll want to pick one that’s comfortable to transport from place to place, keeps your contents cold for hours on end, and is waterproof, so no leaks or spillage occurs.

With a soft cooler, you don’t have to worry about that dreaded walk from the car to your beach spot while lugging a million and one items in the sand and sun. A perfect soft cooler will fit comfortably upon your shoulder and is roomy enough for your goodies and other beach-day essentials (like your SPF and beach read!).

No summer is complete without a soft cooler bag, and lucky for you, we already did all the research. We’re taking “Girls Who Grill” to the next level and found 10 cooler bags for cool girls. Keep reading below for our picks.

Budget (under $35)

Best Soft Cooler
Amazon | Scothen
Double Decker Backpack Cooler

Longing for a whole charcuterie spread at the beach? That’s not an issue at all with how much this backpack can carry.

  • Multiple compartments
  • Keeps cold for up to 24 hours
  • Holds up to 36 cans
  • 10+ colors available
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Target | Embark
Insulated Cooler Backpack

Target’s Embark™ line is all about having functional gear that looks good and works well during all your outdoor adventures. It keeps food and drink cold all day and works on hikes, trips to the beach, or long road trips.

  • Multiple compartments
  • Holds up to 24 cans
  • Includes a bottle opener
  • 2 colors available
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best cooler bags
Amazon | SMIRLY
Insulated Cooler Bag

Don’t want your ice cream to melt on your way home from the grocery store? Try this affordable insulated cooler bag that works for daily grocery hauls or day trips to the beach.

  • 8 extra pockets to store essentials
  • Waterproof
  • Easy-to-clean liner
  • 5 colors available
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Invest (under $100)

Hydro Flask
Insulated Shoulder Tote

If you want a simple insulated tote that still packs a punch, look to Hydro Flask. Their 20 L Tote Bag is one of the most durable insulated totes out there.

  • Waterproof and water-resistant material
  • Zipper-top, so everything can stay contained
  • Pocket on the outside for easy access
  • 6 colors available
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Best Soft Cooler
CALPAK
Crossbody Insulated Soft Cooler

This cooler bag is ideal for quick summer picnics and concerts in the park. And you cannot deny how cute it is.

  • Water Resistant
  • Fits up to (32) 12oz cans
  • Top handle and crossbody strap
  • 6 colors available
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Best Soft Cooler
Igloo
Dual Compartment Cooler Backpack

This faux-leather backpack isn’t just a backpack, but an insulated cooler (have you ever seen something like this?!). This is the type of cooler backpack that does it all and looks good while doing it.

  • Lined with Igloo’s Advanced MaxCold™ insulation, which is leakproof
  • Spacious main compartment that can hold up to 26 cans
  • Separate lower compartment
  • Keeps food and drinks cooler for longer periods of time
  • 2 colors available
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Business & Pleasure
The Premium Cooler Bag

This Business & Pleasure Co. cooler bag definitely wins for best in show—no matter what design you pick, no one can deny how stylish it is.

  • Polished leather handles for carrying as well as a shoulder strap
  • Holds up to 12 cans plus ice
  • 10+ colors available
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Mark & Graham
Canvas Cooler Tote

Consider yourself the coolest gal on the shore with this insulated canvas tote. While boat bags are all the rage right now, they’re especially popular for their usability in the summertime.

  • Insulated lining to keep food and beverages cold or warm
  • Comfortable shoulder strap
  • Customizable options
  • 5 colors available
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Splurge

Best Soft Cooler
Yeti
Hopper Flip 8 Soft Cooler

Yeti’s high-quality products can withstand any kind of summer activity, so you can be assured that this is one of the best cooler bags to lug around all summer long—and beyond!

  • 3 size options that fit up to 30 cans
  • Made for portability so no matter how full it is, you can carry it anywhere
  • Zipper closure
  • Handles on the top and sides as well as a carrying strap
  • Has the capability to keep cold for days
  • 8 colors available
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Best Soft Cooler
ORCA
Wanderer Tote

ORCA, which stands for Outdoor Recreation Company of America, is a renowned cooler brand known for its top-tier quality of products. It’s tall enough to hold multiple wine-bottles, so consider yourself set for backyard BBQs.

  • Tough outer material so it stands on its own
  • 100 percent waterproof inner lining
  • Zipperless closure, meaning the lid closes with latches that are easy to open and snap into place
  • Comfortable shoulder straps for carrying
  • Versatile front pocket for keys or phone
  • 4 colors available
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bella gill
MEET THE AUTHOR

Bella Gil, Associate Commerce Editor

Because shopping is quite literally her full-time job, Bella is dedicated to making sure you spend your hard-earned money on products you’ll fall in love with. She spends her days testing, researching, and writing about a wide range of topics, from beauty products to rug cleaners and everything in between.