I am blessed to have many good camera bags, but over the years I have found myself using a smaller sling bag more and more, pretty much anytime I don’t need to carry a tripod. For me, the ideal sling bag is small, light and comfortable to carry a minimal amount of necessary gear such as a couple of lenses, batteries, memory cards, filters and a Platypod and ballhead. In the past couple of years, the Everyday Sling from Peak Design has become my go-to sling bag that I use on almost every photography walk, family outing and many other occasions.
The hardest part about committing to the Peak Design Everyday Sling is the price tag (Check out the current price here). It seems like a bit much for a sling bag, but I already have a lot of Peak Design gear and I am very happy with almost everything from Peak Design, with the great build quality and design features, so it made sense for me to try out the sling bag even if it was a bit more than I would usually spend on a sling bag. Sidenote, if you want to see any of my other Peak Design gear, check out my reviews on the Shell, Travel Backpack, Everyday Messenger, Everyday Backpack, Field Pouch, Range Pouch, Capture Clip, Slide, Leash and Cuff.
Overview and Design
The 5L Everyday Sling is the smallest bag you can get from Peak Design, so it is designed for the efficient and convenient method to carry, and provide quick access for, your basic essentials, such as a camera body or drone, a lens or two, filters, batteries, memory cards, remotes and any other smaller item.
The Everyday Sling is designed to be worn either as a cross-body sling or a waist bag, which versatility is nice and easy to adjust depending on your circumstances.
The convertible strap on the Everyday Sling features a quick-adjuster that works really well, letting you loosen or tighten the bag depending on where you are wearing it or when you need extra slack for accessing gear. Access to the interior of the bag is also easy with a weatherproof zipper that lets you each anything in the bag without requiring the removal of the bag from your body.
The interior of the bag is pretty basic, with Peak Design’s awesome FlexFold dividers creating distinct storage areas that fit a body, lenses or smaller drone. An additionally padded tablet sleeve holds most tablets up to 11 inches, which makes this a great personal item to carry on flights.
There are also an additional 4 small stretchy pockets for batteries and cards on the inner flap, another small pouch below those and a small pocket on the outside of the bag, all of which are perfect for storing smaller items you want to keep organized and accessible.
Finally, the bag has a nice weatherproof canvas material that is both sleek-looking and durable, perfect for use running around town or in rainy weather.
What I Love About the Everyday Sling
There is a lot I love about the Everyday Sling that makes up for the price tag. I have tried several other cheaper sling bags and they either weren’t as comfortable, weren’t as functional or didn’t last very long.
Most importantly, the size and fit of the Everyday Sling is perfect for me. The Everyday Sling can fit a surprising amount of gear for how small it is. There is no wasted space in this bag thanks to its great design, which is Peak Design’s calling card, and the profile of the bag allows it to fit snugly against your body, which increases comfort and minimizes the bulk added to your set up.
The biggest thing about the Everyday Sling to me, which justifies spending the money over a cheaper sling, is the craftsmanship of the bag. The weatherproof nylon shell of this bag is awesome for durability and protection. I have used all my Peak Design bags, which have the same or similar material, in some rugged and wet conditions, and they always hold up great. The bag is not waterproof of course, but it is rated as stormproof (meaning it can withstand rain but not submersion) and I have been confident using it in rain, dirt and sand without worrying about the elements reaching my gear. Simply put, the quality and materials on the Everyday Sling are top notch and should last you forever.
Another huge advantage the Everyday Sling has over cheaper sling bags is the great strap. It is comfortable, sleek and, most importantly, easy to adjust. The bag slides easily from my front to my back, easily loosened for access or adjustment and then quickly tightened against my body for hiking or running without any delay or inconvenience. I have experienced virtually no inconveniences during my extensive use of the Everyday Sling.
Another key feature that adds to the usability of the Everyday Sling, and sets it apart from cheaper bags is its ability to easily and comfortably be worn on the waist. I know, I know … nobody wants to be seen with a fanny pack, but wearing a sling bag on your waist can be incredibly comfortable and efficient, especially on long days. It takes all the weight off your shoulders, keeps the bag tight in place, and allows for the fastest access to the inside of the bag. My fear of embarrassment keeps me from wearing it on my waist too often, but I love it when I am out in nature by myself and want quick access to filters and spare lenses or when I am shooting sports and need as much freedom as possible.
If you use a Peak Design Capture Clip like me, you will love that there is an easily attachable place for the clip on the outside of the Everyday Sling. I love having this capability for hiking and street photography as it allows me to always have my camera out and accessible, without having it on a strap. I recently did a trip to New Orleans and decided I would just use a strap instead of bringing the clip, and it was so annoying to always have the camera around my neck. I regretted my poor choice before the end of the first day.
Finally, I love the dividers used by Peak Design in the Everday Sling and all their other bags. Peak Design’s unique FlexFold dividers are unquestionably the best dividers use in any camera bag. The tops and sides of these dividers can be folded down to best fit your unique gear configuration. This is especially useful in a sling bag as I can fit a lens or filters or ballhead in one of the dividers and then fold it down and let the body sit over over the top, saving me a ton of wasted space that normal dividers cause. The end result is fitting more gear in a smaller space.
What I don’t Love About the Everyday Sling
The biggest thing, as mentioned above, that most people will struggle with on this bag is going to be the price tag. While $99.95 (at the time of this article, check the current price here) is not unusual for a high-end sling bag, it is a lot of money for a non-professional photographer who is likely still going to by a backpack in addition to the sling bag. In the end, I think the quality and functionality of this bag justify the difference in price from cheaper sling bags I have used, and I am happy with it. As they say, buy cheap, buy twice.
Really, the only other complaint I have with the Everyday Sling is a problem I have with all sling/messenger bags. By their design, these bags distribute all the weight of the bag and its contents in one location, making the bag less comfortable to carry than a backpack. The ability to wear the Everyday Sling on your waist conquers this problem, but when you can’t or aren’t willing to do that, it is just a necessary evil that, with the small size of this bag, really isn’t a big deal.
Picking the Right Size (and color) Everyday Sling
The Peak Design Everyday Sling is available in two sizes, 5L and 10L, and two colors, black or gray. I opted for the black 5L Everday Sling because I primarily use a sling bag when I shoot the smaller Fuji X system. The 5L size has been a perfect fit for me and my gear, but I honestly think it has enough space, it could easily fit a larger system (without long lenses). If you need more space, the 10L is going to be quite a bit bigger and more than accommodating.
I love a good sling bag and think everyone would benefit from having one, either as a primary bag or as an additional tool to your normal backpack. If you are a street or travel photographer, you will absolutely enjoy the durability, convenience and comfort of the Everyday Sling. If you are more than the occasional photographer, the quality of construction and ease of use with the Everyday Sling will make it worth the money as you will love using it and it will last a long time.
You can pick up the Everyday Sling on Amazon or, as I prefer, at Peak Design. due to their amazing customer service. If you prefer the larger 10L Everyday Sling, you can check the current price at Peak Design.