MightyGoods > The North Face > The North Face Borealis

The North Face Borealis Reviews Summary and Buyer's Guide

Last updated April 2019

4.32
based on 18,864 reviews


We have checked many thousands of reviews and found 13 reasons to buy the Borealis - and 3 reasons NOT to buy it.

Check all the pros and cons here.


89% of the reviewers give the The North Face Borealis a good or excellent rating!

Excellent (78%)
Good (11%)
Average (4%)
Poor (2%)
Bad (3%)





Reviews Summary


Here's what the reviewers think about the The North Face Borealis:

Reviewers like these things about the The North Face Borealis

  • According to users, the Northface Borealis backpack is comfortable to use.
  • Other users thought that because it is free of embellishment, they can grab their gear and go.
  • Reviewers believed that the bag is optimal for school use.
  • Laptop users lauded the presence of a padded sleeve dedicated to keeping their gadgets safe and secure.
  • Reviewers mentioned that the pack is comfortable to wear due to its FlexVent injection-molded shoulder straps.
  • They also noticed that the added foam on its shoulder straps provides ample support.
  • Other reviewers also found that its padded air mesh back panel provides additional comfort and support to the user.
  • Users found it easy to adjust the shoulder straps in order to ensure a snug fit.
  • Testers said that the bag's integrated reflective loop for blinky light makes it visible even at nighttime.
  • Reviewers mentioned that the pack has a large main compartment where they can stash all their essential stuff in place.
  • They also noted that the bag contains sufficient pockets for secure storage and organization.
  • Other reviewers thought that its front stash pocket and bungee cord provide additional storage of things.
  • Several users felt that it was durable and sturdy due to its material.

Reviewers don't like these things

  • A reviewer thought that the backpack is not waterproof.
  • A tester said that its mesh pockets tend to tear apart.
  • A user felt that it was uncomfortable to use because it made her back hurt.

Specs


Crowdsourced specs across all The North Face Borealis models and sizes:

Capacity iconCapacity28 l (1709 cuin)
Weight iconWeight2.2-2.4 oz (1-1.1 kg)
Length iconLength8-19 in (20-48 cm)
Width14-19 in (36-48 cm)
Height10-12 in (25-30 cm)
Laptop iconLaptop SizeMax. 15 inches


The bag is recommended for these activities:

Travel
School
Hiking
Cycling
Backpacking
Sport



Feature Summary


Many sources mention these The North Face Borealis features:
  • Water bottle pockets
  • Sternum strap
  • Reflective
  • Compression straps
  • Hydration compatible
  • Laptop compartment

Some sources also mention these features:
  • Media pocket
  • Stretch mesh
  • Organizer panel
  • Hip belt
  • Ventilated back panel
  • Sunglasses pocket
  • Load-lifter straps

Actual features depends on the model, so check the features before you buy.


Capacity/Weight Levels


The capacity/weight level shows how much the bag weights compared with it's capacity (volume).

The lower the capacity/weight level, the better.

ModelCapacityWeightLevel
TNF28 l2.4 oz0.09 oz/L



Rankings


vs The North Face Bags

The The North Face Borealis ranks #11 compared with the other The North Face bags.

Top 30% The North Face bag

9The North Face Surge
4.38
The North Face Surge
10The North Face Ion
4.35
The North Face Ion
11The North Face Borealis
4.32
The North Face Borealis
12The North Face Sport Hiker
4.31
The North Face Sport Hiker
13The North Face Jester
4.30
The North Face Jester

vs All Bags

The The North Face Borealis ranks #332 compared with all the bags we have checked.

Top 20% bag

330Frye Carson
4.33
Frye Carson
331The North Face Borealis
4.32
The North Face Borealis
332Arcteryx Slingblade
4.32
Arcteryx Slingblade
333Dakine Valise
4.32
Dakine Valise
334Osprey Moki
4.32
Osprey Moki



Vs Other Bags


Crowdsourced comparisons of the The North Face Borealis vs 10 other, similar bags.

Many sources mention this feature
Some sources mention this feature


The North Face Borealis vs Patagonia Chacabuco


The North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis

4.32
BEST
Based on 18,864 reviews
Capacity: 28 l
Weight: 2.2-2.4 oz
Price: $$


Patagonia Chacabuco
Patagonia Chacabuco

3.59

Based on 65 reviews

Capacity: 28-32 l
Weight:
Price: $$

  • The Borealis is rated better than the Chacabuco.
  • In total, we have checked and analyzed 18,929 reviews of the two bags.
  • The biggest Borealis is 14% smaller than the biggest Chacabuco (28 L vs 32 L).

FeatureBorealisChacabuco
Compression straps
Hip belt
Hydration bladder
Hydration compatible
Laptop compartment
Load-lifter straps
Media pocket
Organizer panel
Reflective
Sternum strap
Stretch mesh
Sunglasses pocket
Ventilated back panel
Water bottle pockets

Both bags are available in these colors:
Black
Blue
Green
White

Only the Borealis is available in these colors:
Grey
Red
Orange
Yellow
Purple
Brown




The North Face Borealis vs Patagonia Refugio


The North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis

4.32
BEST
Based on 18,864 reviews
Capacity: 28 l
Weight: 2.2-2.4 oz
Price: $$


Patagonia Refugio
Patagonia Refugio

3.68

Based on 1,443 reviews

Capacity: 28-30 l
Weight: 1.35 oz
Price: $$

  • The Borealis is rated somewhat better than the Refugio.
  • In total, we have checked and analyzed 20,307 reviews of the two bags.
  • The biggest Borealis is 7% smaller than the biggest Refugio (28 L vs 30 L).
  • The weight of the biggest Borealis is 78% heavier than the biggest Refugio (2.4 oz vs 1.35 oz).

FeatureBorealisRefugio
Compression straps
Hip belt
Hydration bladder
Hydration compatible
Laptop compartment
Load-lifter straps
Media pocket
Organizer panel
Reflective
Side pockets
Sternum strap
Stretch mesh
Sunglasses pocket
Ventilated back panel
Water bottle pockets

Both bags are available in these colors:
Black
Grey
Blue
Red
Green
Orange
Yellow
White

Only the Borealis is available in these colors:
Purple
Brown

Only the Refugio is available in these colors:
Pink




The North Face Borealis vs The North Face Big Shot


The North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis

4.32

Based on 18,864 reviews
Capacity: 28 l
Weight: 2.2-2.4 oz
Price: $$

  • The Borealis is rated a little bit worse than the Big Shot.
  • In total, we have checked and analyzed 19,170 reviews of the two bags.

FeatureBorealisBig Shot
Compression straps
Hip belt
Hydration compatible
Laptop compartment
Load-lifter straps
Media pocket
Organizer panel
Reflective
Sternum strap
Stretch mesh
Sunglasses pocket
Ventilated back panel
Water bottle pockets

Both bags are available in these colors:
Grey

Only the Borealis is available in these colors:
Black
Blue
Red
Green
Orange
Yellow
Purple
Brown
White




The North Face Borealis vs The North Face Hot Shot


The North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis

4.32
BEST
Based on 18,864 reviews
Capacity: 28 l
Weight: 2.2-2.4 oz
Price: $$


The North Face Hot Shot
The North Face Hot Shot

4.18

Based on 102 reviews

Capacity: 30 l
Weight: 2.35 oz
Price: $$

  • The Borealis is rated a little bit better than the Hot Shot.
  • In total, we have checked and analyzed 18,966 reviews of the two bags.
  • The biggest Borealis is 7% smaller than the biggest Hot Shot (28 L vs 30 L).
  • The weight of the biggest Borealis is 2% heavier than the biggest Hot Shot (2.4 oz vs 2.35 oz).

FeatureBorealisHot Shot
Compression straps
Hip belt
Hydration compatible
Laptop compartment
Load-lifter straps
Media pocket
Organizer panel
Reflective
Side pockets
Sternum strap
Stretch mesh
Sunglasses pocket
Ventilated back panel
Water bottle pockets

Both bags are available in these colors:
Black
Grey
Blue
Red
White

Only the Borealis is available in these colors:
Green
Orange
Yellow
Purple
Brown




The North Face Borealis vs The North Face Isabella


The North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis

4.32
BEST
Based on 18,864 reviews
Capacity: 28 l
Weight: 2.2-2.4 oz
Price: $$


The North Face Isabella
The North Face Isabella

3.97

Based on 509 reviews

Capacity:
Weight: 1.55 oz
Price: $$

  • The Borealis is rated slightly better than the Isabella.
  • In total, we have checked and analyzed 19,373 reviews of the two bags.
  • The weight of the biggest Borealis is 55% heavier than the biggest Isabella (2.4 oz vs 1.55 oz).

FeatureBorealisIsabella
Compression straps
Hip belt
Hydration compatible
Laptop compartment
Load-lifter straps
Media pocket
Organizer panel
Reflective
Sternum strap
Stretch mesh
Sunglasses pocket
Ventilated back panel
Water bottle pockets

Both bags are available in these colors:
Black
Grey
Blue
Green

Only the Borealis is available in these colors:
Red
Orange
Yellow
Purple
Brown
White




The North Face Borealis vs The North Face Jester


The North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis

4.32
BEST
Based on 18,864 reviews
Capacity: 28 l
Weight: 2.2-2.4 oz
Price: $$


The North Face Jester
The North Face Jester

4.30

Based on 19,863 reviews

Capacity:
Weight: 1.7-1.8 oz
Price: $$

  • The Borealis is rated about the same as the Jester.
  • In total, we have checked and analyzed 38,727 reviews of the two bags.
  • The weight of the biggest Borealis is 33% heavier than the biggest Jester (2.4 oz vs 1.8 oz).

FeatureBorealisJester
Compression straps
Hip belt
Hydration compatible
Laptop compartment
Load-lifter straps
Media pocket
Organizer panel
Reflective
Sternum strap
Stretch mesh
Sunglasses pocket
Ventilated back panel
Water bottle pockets

Both bags are available in these colors:
Black
Grey
Blue
Red
Green
Orange
Yellow
Purple

Only the Borealis is available in these colors:
Brown
White

Only the Jester is available in these colors:
Pink

The North Face Borealis and the North Face Jester are both basic, upright, frameless backpacks with several functional differences which are easily observable from their exteriors. One of the most noticeable differences between the two are the absence of elastic x-shaped straps on the Borealis.

Conversely, the Jester has many elastic x-straps for external use and the additional holding capacity for more awkwardly-shaped or fragile objects (such as folders, posters, etcetera). The Borealis model has a smaller additional top-opening pocket than its counterpart, with no elastic x-shaped external straps. Altogether, its simpler design lends it a more ergonomic appearance.


The North Face Borealis vs The North Face Recon


The North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis

4.32

Based on 18,864 reviews
Capacity: 28 l
Weight: 2.2-2.4 oz
Price: $$


The North Face Recon
The North Face Recon

4.38
BEST
Based on 15,700 reviews

Capacity: 31 l
Weight: 2-2.6 oz
Price: $$

  • The Borealis is rated a little bit worse than the Recon.
  • In total, we have checked and analyzed 34,564 reviews of the two bags.
  • The biggest Borealis is 11% smaller than the biggest Recon (28 L vs 31 L).
  • The weight of the biggest Borealis is 8% lighter than the biggest Recon (2.4 oz vs 2.6 oz).

FeatureBorealisRecon
Carry-on size
Compression straps
Hip belt
Hydration compatible
Laptop compartment
Load-lifter straps
Media pocket
Organizer panel
Reflective
Sternum strap
Stretch mesh
Sunglasses pocket
Ventilated back panel
Water bottle pockets

Both bags are available in these colors:
Black
Grey
Blue
Red
Green
Orange
Yellow
Purple
White

Only the Borealis is available in these colors:
Brown

If you need a reliable backpack, neither the North Face Borealis nor the North Face Recon will let you down. These bags are popular and hefty.

The North Face Borealis has comfortable straps to make this bag easy to take with you on trips and on hiking treks. It has a good protective compartment for your laptop.

The North Face Recon is roomy, so that you can transport a lot of stuff. It is made of highly durable material to handle the rugged demands you place upon it.


The North Face Borealis vs The North Face Slingshot


The North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis

4.32
BEST
Based on 18,864 reviews
Capacity: 28 l
Weight: 2.2-2.4 oz
Price: $$

  • The Borealis is rated a little bit better than the Slingshot.
  • In total, we have checked and analyzed 18,882 reviews of the two bags.

Only the Borealis is available in these colors:
Black
Grey
Blue
Red
Green
Orange
Yellow
Purple
Brown
White




The North Face Borealis vs The North Face Surge


The North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis

4.32

Based on 18,864 reviews
Capacity: 28 l
Weight: 2.2-2.4 oz
Price: $$


The North Face Surge
The North Face Surge

4.38
BEST
Based on 5,905 reviews

Capacity: 33 l
Weight: 3-3.1 oz
Price: $$

  • The Borealis is rated a little bit worse than the Surge.
  • In total, we have checked and analyzed 24,769 reviews of the two bags.
  • The biggest Borealis is 18% smaller than the biggest Surge (28 L vs 33 L).
  • The weight of the biggest Borealis is 29% lighter than the biggest Surge (2.4 oz vs 3.1 oz).

FeatureBorealisSurge
Compression straps
Hip belt
Hydration compatible
Laptop compartment
Load-lifter straps
Media pocket
Organizer panel
Reflective
Sternum strap
Stretch mesh
Sunglasses pocket
Ventilated back panel
Water bottle pockets

Both bags are available in these colors:
Black
Grey
Blue
Red
Green
Purple

Only the Borealis is available in these colors:
Orange
Yellow
Brown
White

Only the Surge is available in these colors:
Pink

The North Face has already impressed with earlier releases and it turns out these are no exception. You'll find both of these bags provides great options for someone who wants to bring as much as they can without any concern over the wear and tear it might cause.

The Borealis in particular gives you an incredible amount of room for your belongings without sacrificing protection. It's perfect for someone who might need to carry an assortment of items with them but isn't sure what they'll bring. The Surge is better suited for the customer who wants to bring only the essentials and nothing else.


The North Face Borealis vs The North Face Vault


The North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis

4.32
BEST
Based on 18,864 reviews
Capacity: 28 l
Weight: 2.2-2.4 oz
Price: $$


The North Face Vault
The North Face Vault

4.25

Based on 5,093 reviews

Capacity:
Weight: 1.3-1.8 oz
Price: $$

  • The Borealis is rated a little bit better than the Vault.
  • In total, we have checked and analyzed 23,957 reviews of the two bags.
  • The weight of the biggest Borealis is 33% heavier than the biggest Vault (2.4 oz vs 1.8 oz).

FeatureBorealisVault
Compression straps
Hip belt
Hydration compatible
Laptop compartment
Load-lifter straps
Media pocket
Organizer panel
Reflective
Sternum strap
Stretch mesh
Sunglasses pocket
Ventilated back panel
Water bottle pockets

Both bags are available in these colors:
Black
Grey
Blue
Red
Green
Orange
Brown
White

Only the Borealis is available in these colors:
Yellow
Purple

Only the Vault is available in these colors:
Pink





Bag ID 31340. Images from Amazon Product Advertising API and shop datafeeds.

Amazon deals/prices updated daily (last 2019-04-25).


Last updated on April 19, 2019