There are review sites all over the web, and they have several common points of failure. Either the products are used briefly, or the products are tested against specific criteria. Often both are true. Usually the products are given to the reviewer. The samples can be hand-picked. As a production manager I’ve done this.

For a lot of products, the above is a fine method. For others, the only way to undrestand them is to live with them.

As someone who travels frequently, reads reviews constantly, and is willing to spend time with things, contains several reviews of products I’ve owned. They’re things I’ve used. In the case of bags, they’re things I’ve dragged around from house to house, airport to airport, and all manner of locations in between.

And I purchased them all with my own money, unless noted. Wisely? That’s the question.

Here are some answers.