Marc Jacobs Vs Michael Kors: Which Brand Is Better For You?

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If you’re stuck between Marc Jacobs vs Michael Kors for your next designer purchase, will help you decide which brand is worth your money.

When thinking about popular affordable luxury brands, both Marc Jacobs and Michael Kors come to mind. But if you only have the money to spend on one of these brands, choosing the better designer for you can be a bit of a challenge. 

In order to guide you along this exciting journey to a new designer bag, watch, or other accessories, we’ve extensively researched both brands, their history, their most popular items, and what sets them apart. Without further ado, let’s get into it!

Marc Jacobs Vs Michael Kors:

The History Of Marc Jacobs

The man himself, Marc Jacobs, was born and raised in New York and would become an extremely popular American designer renowned for his creative takes on current trends. But today, most fashionistas best recognize him for his incomparable “grunge” collection, which many attribute to the grunge look that became mainstream in the 1990s.

After attending the High School of Art and Design while being employed at Charivari. At work, Marc Jacobs met the famous fashion designer Perry Ellis, who eventually became his mentor.

Years later, he became the vice president of women’s clothing at Perry Ellis, introducing his revolutionary grunge styles, inspired by the music scene, that sparked the trend. His grunge looks included pairing feminine floral dresses with combat boots and other unorthodox combinations that are still worn today.

In the fall of 1993, Marc Jacobs launched his own brand, which even included a full collection of menswear. Shortly after that, he introduced more ready-to-wear collections that became exceedingly popular among celebrities and models.

During the first few years of his company, Marc Jacobs also collaborated with several artists for his collections at Louis Vuitton. These A-list artists included Takashi Murakami, rapper Kanye West, and Richard Price. Collaborations were a way that Marc Jacobs could utilize his creativity while generating awareness for his own personal brand.

Today, Marc Jacobs is most commonly known for his twists on traditional and retro-inspired designs, using colors and unique cuts to breathe life into older styles.

While there are tons of highly sought-after designer brands in the current market, Marc Jacob remains near the top for his vintage and grunge looks, high-quality handbags, chic accessories, and makeup line. 

The history of Michael Kors

Michael Kors is another extremely successful American fashion designer, launching his namesake label in 1981. Like Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors always had a passion for designing clothing, catching a glimpse of the industry through his mother’s modeling career.

At the ridiculously young age of five, Michael Kors eleven resigned his mom’s wedding dress for her second marriage. From there on out, he started designing clothing and selling it to people from the basement of his parent’s home.

When he was old enough to start legally working, Michael Kors took a job at a nearby clothing boutique as a salesperson, though he did eventually take over the store’s design and displays. 

After launching his label in 1981, which specialized in ready-to-wear clothing and accessories for women, he continued to create additional brands that would stem from his main label. These included MICHAEL Michael Kors, which carried handbags, accessories, and other clothing collections. 

Popular celebrities like Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Lopez, and Heidi Klum have been photographed in some of Michael Kors’ designs over the years. Former first lady Michelle Obama also wore a Michael Kors dress at the State of the Union address in 2015. How’s that for celebrity endorsement?!

In terms of the brand’s style, Michael Kors embraces the cool, sporty, and sophisticated modern American vibe. The collections are filled with pieces that feature sleek tailoring and scream “luxury”.

Compared to Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors’ style is slightly less edgy and is more popular with young to middle-aged professionals as its fashion and accessories are definitely appropriate for the office. Those who like to take fashion risks by embracing grunge and offbeat designs tend to prefer Marc Jacobs. 

Differences Between Marc Jacobs Vs Michael Kors

Both of these affordable designer brands are very similar, which means this portion will be short and sweet. After rising to success, Marc Jacobs and Michael Kors started to get manufactured, and even designed, by the Fossil Group.

Because of this commonality, the two labels are priced similarly and are often made from the same materials. When they aren’t being sold out of their respective storefronts, they can be found at similar retailers like Nordstrom and Hudson’s Bay in Canada. 

Even though they differ in style, with Marc Jacobs being edgier and Michael Kors being more sophisticated, the differences really aren’t that noticeable anymore. 

With this said, we’d like to point out that among the luxury fashion community, Marc Jacobs definitely has a better reputation, owing to the brand’s unique designs and originality.

While Michael Kors is certainly the more popular brand of the two, this also means that it’s become somewhat of an over-exposed brand in some people’s eyes. Michael Kors is also somewhat known for creating bags with eerily similar designs to other luxury brands’ bestselling bags, which can definitely be a turn-off.

In terms of pricing, Marc Jacobs tends to be slightly more affordable than Michael Kors in the leather goods department, with their bestselling bags retailing for just $200-$300.

Our Top Picks From Marc Jacobs Vs Michael Kors

1. Shoulder bags

Marc Jacobs vs Michael Kors shoulder bags: The Director bag
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Michael Kors’ Hally Small Suede and Crocodile Embossed Shoulder Bag
Get this on Michael Kors

Even though Marc Jacobs’ The Director bag isn’t your typical shoulder bag, this tote-style bag can perform all of the same tasks. It can be carried by hand or worn around your shoulder by its two adjustable shoulder straps.

The black bag is constructed from natural grain leather and has a magnetic closure with a middle interior compartment that’s secured by a zipper. It retails for $450.

Michael Kors’ Hally Small Suede and Crocodile Embossed Shoulder Bag is perfect for fashion lovers who prefer smaller bags. It was designed for the girl-next-door as it can be worn for casual events and then taken out for a night on the town.

The suede bag features gold-tone hardware, snap fastening, and crocodile-embossed leather trim. This glamorous shoulder bag comes in chocolate brown and chambray blue, and is on sale right now for $250. 

2. Crossbody bags

Marc Jacobs vs Michael Kors crossbody bags: The Plush Snapshot
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Greenwich Small Saffiano Leather Crossbody Bag
Get this bag on Michael Kors

Because teddy and plush fabrics are super trendy right now, we couldn’t resist Marc Jacobs’ The Plush Snapshot, which is made from polyester faux fur. It takes after the brand’s iconic camera bag and comes with a removable and adjustable shoulder strap, allowing you to use the small bag as a clutch if needed.

The Plush Snapshot has the signature Double J hardware and a dual zip closure to keep all of your items safe and secure. This adorable bag can be added to your collection for $375. This style comes in black, fluffy rose, and chick yellow. 

The Greenwich Small Saffiano Leather Crossbody Bag ($298) from Michael Kors is slightly less flashy and a little more timeless. This bag can be easily dressed up or dressed down and features gold-toned hardware, an adjustable strap, and multiple interior pockets. It’s also made with 100 percent saffiano leather so rest assured knowing the bag will last forever. 

3. Tote bags

Marc Jacobs vs Michael Kors tote bags: The Tote Bag
Get this bag on Nordstrom
Eva Large Logo Stripe Tote Bag from Michael Kors
Get this bag on Michael Kors

Name a more iconic tote, we’ll wait… The Tote Bag from Marc Jacobs is a must-have item in every bag collection as it’s incredibly fashionable and functional.

This tote bag has a screen-printed logo on the front, a zip pocket on the inside, and easily closes by a zipper at the very top. It can be added to your wardrobe for $195.

The Eva Large Logo Stripe Tote Bag from Michael Kors comes in five neutral colors and can be worn all year round. This bag is carefully crafted from fabric covered in the brand’s signature logo print with contrasting stripes and leather trim.

It can comfortably fit a laptop, making it perfect for school, work, or traveling. The Eva Large Logo Stripe Tote Bag can be purchased for $298. 

4. Wallets

Marc Jacobs vs Michael Kors wallets: Pink Glam Shot Compact Wallet
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Michael Kors’ Leather Continental Wristlet
Get this on Michael Kors

The Glam Shot Compact Wallet from Marc Jacobs ($180) is made with smooth lambskin and features the brand’s double J gold hardware on the front. On the inside, you’ll find ten card slots, a bill sleeve, four slip pockets, and a coin pocket for all of your change from the parking meter. 

Michael Kors’ Leather Continental Wristlet is made from 100 percent saffiano leather and also features gold-toned hardware on the front. Since the wallet conveniently has a wristlet strap, it can easily be towed along on your errands or when you go out for brunch with your friends.

On the inside of the wristlet, there are three slit pockets, ten card slots, a bill sleeve, and more. It comes in black and soft pink and costs $178.

Shopping Tips

Before visiting a retailer’s website and going wild with adding items to your online cart, it’s important to think about what types of bags or accessories your wardrobe is lacking. There are few things worse than purchasing something on a whim to later find out you have something that’s eerily similar.

Then you have to go through the ever so daunting hassle of returning the item via mail. This is a nightmare that we don’t even wish on our worst enemies. After fine-tuning your “needs” list and pushing those unnecessary “wants” to the side, it’s time to start thinking about what items, colors, and designs you’ll get the most use of.

While a trendy rose gold watch can be tempting, you might require a new black tote bag that you can transport all of your things in, to and from work. Plus, since accessories are often cheaper than designer bags, you can always ask for them as gifts for your birthday, Christmas, or anniversary with your partner.

If you’ve decided to add a new designer bag to your collection, consider what outfits you’d wear it with as this will help you choose an appropriate color. You also want to think about how long you’d be carrying the bag for as this could impact the design.

It’s crucial to find a bag with comfortable, adjustable straps if you’re going to be using it for several hours at a time. You’ll also want to decide on a budget, source out some seasonal sales or discount codes, and make sure you have room for it to live in your closet when you’re not using it. 

Seriously, look at how sensible you’re being! We love a sensible queen.

Concluding thoughts

We really love both of these brands, however, the best brand for you depends on your personal style.

If you love capturing the attention of others with your outfits, handbags, and accessories, Marc Jacobs is definitely the better option as Michael Kors is more on the conservative, sophisticated side. 

However, as both brands use similar quality materials and have roughly similar price points, it really depends on which brand’s designs you love more. Either way, you’ll be making a good purchase!

We hope you enjoyed our analysis on Marc Jacobs vs Michael Kors! Make sure to check out the related articles below for more luxury fashion ideas.

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