Call us: 805-929-8191
Our luggage glossary was created to help consumers educate themselves about the diverse and often confusing array of materials and products used in the luggage world. What makes ballistic nylon "ballistic"? What's the difference between a garment bag and a garment cover? Find answers to these questions and more right here.
Still have questions? Feel free to contact us.
ABS: ABS is a strong, shock-absorbent type of plastic. Its rigidity makes it especially impact-resistant, and its glossy finish adds to its aesthetic value.
Other uses: Automotive parts, musical instruments, sporting goods
Click here to see our current selection of ABS merchandise.
Ballistic Nylon: Originally developed to be used in jackets worn by World War II airmen, ballistic nylon is made with a specific type of basket weave. This weaving method makes it especially resistant to abrasion.
Other uses: Tool belts, watchstraps, police duty belts, motorcycle jackets
Click here to see our current selection of ballistic nylon merchandise.
Carbon Fiber: Carbon fiber can be used on its own, or to add strength when blended with other fabrics. Carbon fiber is stiff, has a high tensile strength, and a high strength-to-weight ratio, which makes it extremely lightweight.
Other uses: Aerospace, civil engineering, motorsports
Click here to see our current selection of carbon fiber merchandise.
Cordura Nylon: “Cordura nylon” is a general term that may refer to any type of nylon made by the Cordura company. The fabric was developed during World War II and originally used in the tires of military vehicles.
Other uses: Motorcycle jackets, military garments
Click here to see our current selection of Cordura nylon merchandise.
Faux Leather: Faux leather is an artificial leather alternative. Often more affordable than real leather, faux leather is also used in many vegan products. Faux leather comes in many different formulations that vary from brand to brand.
Other uses: Upholstery, shoes, clothing, book binding
Click here to see our current selection of faux leather merchandise.
Junior Ballistic: A lighter form of ballistic nylon. Heavier versions are sometimes called “senior ballistic.”
Click here to see our current selection of junior ballistic merchandise.
Micro Ballistic: A high-denier, heavier nylon. “Denier” refers to the weight of the nylon. The higher the number, the more durable the nylon.
Micro Fleece: Contrary to its name, micro fleece isn’t made from sheep’s wool. It’s a synthetic material that is known for its softness, warmth, water repellence, and light weight. Micro fleece is a suitable vegan alternative to wool.
Other uses: Active wear, outerwear, blankets and linens, home accessories
Click here to see our current selection of micro fleece merchandise.
Microfiber: Microfiber is a synthetic fiber with a variety of uses. 1/100th the diameter of a human hair, microfiber is a versatile material that can be used as a leather alternative, in household products, and as an industrial filler. It can be printed, embroidered, and embossed. Unlike cotton or paper, it leaves virtually no residue or lint behind, making it a popular material with which to make cleaning supplies.
Other uses: Handbags, wallets, car detailing accessories, lens cleaners
Click here to see our current selection of microfiber merchandise.
Polycarbonate: A hard polymer with higher strength and durability than plastic. It is highly impact-resistant and resistant to temperature fluctuations.
Other uses: CDs, DVDs, swimming goggles, LCD screens, riot shields
Click here to see our current selection of polycarbonate merchandise.
Polyethelene: Good old plastic. “Polyethelene” is a blanket term that can be used to describe plastics of varying weights and strengths. Polyethelene was first used commercially in the 1930s.
Other uses: Toys, construction, food storage, housewares, medical supplies, automotive parts
Click here to see our current selection of polyethelene merchandise.
Polypropylene: Another type of plastic with a wide range of uses. It is highly stress-resistant and stands up well to impact, temperature fluctuations, and corrosion.
Other uses: Furniture, food storage, roping, and protective sheeting for trading cards
Click here to see our current selection of polypropylene merchandise.
Ripstop Nylon: Nylon that is woven with special reinforcing threads. These threads aid in both prevention and containment of tears, ensuring that any damage that does occur doesn’t spread.
Other uses: Kites, hot air balloons, parachutes, flags
Click here to see our current selection of ripstop nylon merchandise.
Types of Luggage (Click header links to view our current selection of that product)
Attache (or attaché): A hard-sided, hinged briefcase that can be made of plastic, metal, leather, or wood. Attaches can be used to store documents or professional gear like cameras.
Briefcase: A blanket term that can be used to describe an attaché, messenger bag, laptop bag, or camera case. Briefcases come in a variety of styles and materials, but are traditionally made of leather and used in business or workplace settings.
Daypack: A light- or medium-duty backpack that’s suitable for school, errands, or casual travel.
Garment Cover: Lighter and less bulky than traditional garment bags, a garment cover offers protection from wrinkles and debris. Whereas a garment bag may have wheels, pockets, and look more like traditional luggage, a garment cover generally has a simpler, no-frills design.
Hardside Luggage: Luggage with a hard exterior. Hardside luggage is constructed of heavy-duty material like polycarbonate, resulting in a lightweight bag that’s extremely resistant to damage. Hardside luggage is often (though not always) more costly than its soft-sided counterparts. Hardsided luggage often comes in shiny, colorful, and eye-catching finishes.
Laptop Sleeve: A type of briefcase made specifically to store and transport laptop computers and their accessories. Some sleeves come fully equipped with straps, handles, and pockets, while others are more minimalist.
Messenger Bag: Sometimes called a courier bag, a messenger bag is a type of soft-sided briefcase. More casual than an attaché or traditional briefcase, it’s generally worn over one shoulder or across the body. Messenger bags are popular with students as an alternative to backpacks, and also with professionals who work in less formal environments.
Spinner Luggage: Wheeled luggage with four wheels instead of two. As the name implies, spinner luggage can be spun and maneuvered at 360 degrees.
Travel Backpack: A larger, more durable backpack intended for rugged or heavy use. Ideal for camping or backpacking.