Product Review:The Jansport Cool Student isn’t as cool as it seems

Product Review:The Jansport Cool Student isn’t as cool as it seems

Lorelei Talley, Author

    For me, having a good backpack is one of the most important necessities in school. I have spent years searching for a sturdy bag that can hold all of my school supplies, while also being comfortable on my shoulders. So, of course, when I heard of Jansport backpacks, which are considered one of the best bags for high school students, I had to try them out. Needless to say, I’m still searching for the perfect backpack.

     As a high school student who participates in multiple clubs and takes classes involving countless notebooks and papers, having a backpack that can withstand all my activities is very important. I’m constantly moving around and grabbing things out of my backpack. As an athlete who plays three sports, I need something that can hold food, clothes, and other extra necessities. I also take the school bus, so I need a strong bag that can withstand shoving and tight spaces. 

    To clarify, I did use this backpack in seventh grade, but it only held my iPad and a pencil case, not nearly as much as what it held in high school.

    I began using this bag again at the beginning of my freshman year. It began with a heavy computer, a notebook and four folders, among other things. The backpack originally held up fairly well. However, its water bottle pocket struggled to fit my 40-ounce water bottle, and there was only one sleeve for my folders and computer, so an unorganized backpack eventually became a staple of mine. Lifting the backpack caused its padded shoulder straps to become worn and quickly grow uncomfortable. When walking around a two-story building for eight hours, having to carry around 15 pounds with no support was a struggle. The “full support” back panel was almost nonexistent and did absolutely nothing to help ease my discomfort when carrying my backpack. About four months into the school year, I had already discovered holes in the top of the bag from carrying my supplies.

    For a $60 bag I expected the quality to be excellent, but the “water resistant” 600 Denier Polyester and Synthetic Leather immediately soaked when in contact with water. Even with an umbrella, I struggled to walk to the bus stop even when it was only drizzling because my papers and computer would become water damaged as soon as I stepped out of the house. And contrary to popular belief, the multiple compartments do not hold a lot. I have had multiple other backpacks that could hold all my supplies plus a heavy jacket, but with the Jansport Cool Student, I could barely hold my folders and notebooks without worrying about the entire strap snapping.

    But, I’m not as picky as I come off to be. The Jansport Cool Student did have its positives, like the ties to the zippers which allowed for easy access to the pockets without having to grab the actual zipper. And, I loved the color of the bag. Since purchasing this backpack, I haven’t found another bag that shares the same “gray letterman” coloring that Jansport does so well. Still, appearance and extra elastic don’t make up for its cheap quality and discomfort. At the end of the day, the Jansport Cool Student would be a decent bag for elementary students, but when faced with the challenges of an everyday high-school student, the Jansport Cool Student fails the test every time.