Unlocking the Price Tag: How Much Is a Birkin Bag Really?

Seeking the cost of a coveted Hermès Birkin bag? Look no further, as we answer the question of “how much is a Birkin bag?” Prices begin at $8,500 and can climb well beyond $2,000,000 for these symbols of luxury. Our in-depth exploration will uncover the roles materials, craftsmanship, and exclusivity play in pricing these iconic pieces, without revealing all of the insights awaiting ahead.

Key Takeaways from this guide:


A guide to navigate Birkin bag prices 


Factors That Influence a Birkin Bag's Price


Why you should invest in Birkin bags

Birkin bags

The Price Range of Birkin Bags

Since its debut in 1984, the price of a Birkin bag has seen a meteoric rise. Initially, one could purchase a Birkin bag for an average of $2000, but that price has skyrocketed over the last 35 years, showcasing a massive 500% increase. Today, the starting price of a new Hermès Birkin bag hovers around $8,500.

However, depending on various factors, including the model and materials used, a new Hermès Birkin bag can range in price from approximately $12,000 to a staggering $2,000,000 We will now explore the various types of Birkins and their corresponding prices.

Black Leather Hermes Birkin Bag vs himalayan diamond birkin

Standard Birkins

Standard Birkin bags are made from popular materials like Togo and Epsom leathers, known for their exceptional quality and appeal. The price of a standard Birkin 25 Togo in the USA has risen to $10,400 in 2023, while a Birkin 30 and 35 in Togo leather are now priced at $11,600 and $12,700 respectively. Even in Europe, the price for a standard Birkin 25 Togo has seen a significant increase to €8,050 in 2023.

In sum, the trends show a steady rise in the price of standard Birkin bags, regardless of size and market.

Standart Birkin Bag Price Table

Style Price (€)
Birkin 25 Togo 8,150
Birkin 30 Togo 9,000
Birkin 35 Togo 9,850
Birkin 25 Epsom 8,650
Birkin 25 Box 12,150
Birkin 25 Shadow Swift 10,150

Exotic Skin Birkins

If you thought the prices for standard Birkin bags were steep, wait until you hear about the exotic skin Birkins. These bags, crafted from materials such as crocodile, alligator, and lizard, have experienced significant price increases in 2023. As these exotic materials contribute to higher costs, these Birkin bags experience a more marked price increase compared to standard leather Birkins.

For instance, the Birkin 25 Sellier Box, which may include exotic skins, saw a price increase to $11,900 in Europe, while Ostrich Birkin bags often sell at prices close to leather Birkins depending on various factors. And if you’re wondering about the upper limit, Birkin bags made with exotic skins and diamond hardware can command prices well over $200,000 in the resale market.

Exotic Skin Birkins Bag Price Table

Style Price (€)
Birkin 25 Ostrich 17,800
Birkin 25 Crocodile (Matte) 39,200
Birkin 25 Crocodile (Shiny) 40,250
Exotic birkin bags

Limited Edition Birkins

Limited edition Birkins are the crème de la crème of the Birkin world. These bags are highly sought after due to their rarity and the exclusive status they carry. Features like limited edition hardware colors, including Rose Gold or Brushed Palladium, and unique materials enhance the collectibility of these Birkin bags. For instance, the Diamond Birkin sells for well over £200,000, while the silver edition of the Metallic Birkin reached a price of $126,000 in 2021.

One of the most extravagant examples of a limited edition Birkin is the Sac Bijou Birkin, priced at $2 million and part of the Hermès Haute Bijouterie Collection. Unlike standard Birkin models, limited edition Birkins can vastly differ in price and desirability due to their rarity, exceptional features, and the prestigious collaborations involved in their creation.

Factors That Influence a Birkin Bag's Price

The price of a Birkin bag is significantly influenced by a variety of factors, including:

  • The type of materials used in its construction

  • The level of craftsmanship involved

  • Attributes like size and color

  • The bag’s condition

  • Rarity, with the date stamp providing insight into the production year.

Even the hardware on a Birkin bag, generally a personal style choice, can have some influence on its price, especially if it features limited edition or distinctive hardware features. We will now dissect these elements to gain a clearer understanding of how they affect a Birkin bag’s price.

Material and Craftsmanship

Each Birkin bag is meticulously hand-sewn by an artisan trained for five years using Hermès’ signature saddle stitching technique that dates back to the 1800s. The process of completing a single Birkin bag involves up to 18 hours of work, including:

  • Sewing

  • Buffing

  • Painting

  • Polishing

All of these steps are done by a single craftsman, reinforcing the uniqueness and craftsmanship of each piece.

The high cost of the Birkin bag is largely attributed to:

  • The extensive skill and craftsmanship required to create it

  • The high-quality goat-skin lining of the interior

  • The materials used, such as Chevre and Clemence leathers, sourced from different tanners in France, offering a range of smells and textures that contribute to its value

  • The hardware finishes such as Gold, Palladium, and the exclusive Rose Gold, which can impact the Birkin’s value, with Gold hardware usually preserving a higher value.

Hermes Materials

Size and Color

Size and color also play a significant role in a Birkin bag’s price. Birkin bags are available in sizes from 25, 30, 35, to 40 centimeters, with the smaller Birkin 25 generally being more expensive due to higher demand. Additionally, neutral and pastel colored Birkin bags often command higher prices than bright colored equivalents due to greater desirability.

Customers have the option to custom order Birkin bags in various hides such as calf leather, lizard, and ostrich, which can further impact the price depending on the chosen material. Ultimately, the blend of size and color preference, along with the availability of customized options, significantly influences the market value of a Birkin bag.

Condition and Rarity

The condition of a Birkin bag is a critical factor in determining its resale value, with bags in pristine condition commanding the highest prices. However, bags in less than perfect condition are more likely to have a diminished value, illustrating how condition is a significant and subjective aspect affecting the potential resale price.

Older leather Birkin bags in excellent condition but showing some signs of wear are typically priced at $10,000 to $15,000. Rarity enhances a Birkin bag’s allure among collectors, with unique designs and features boosting their desirability and leading to elevated auction prices. 

For instance, a leather Birkin 25 in pristine condition can fetch between $25,000 to $35,000, while a leather Birkin 30 in similar pristine condition usually ranges slightly lower, from $20,000 to $30,000. These examples highlight how rarity and condition combine to influence the birkin bag price in the resale market.

The Most Expensive Birkin Bags Ever Sold

Birkin bags, also known as birkin handbag, have become a phenomenon at auction houses, fetching staggering prices and making people wonder why are birkin bags so expensive. Some notable sales of expensive hermès birkin bags include:

  • The most expensive Birkin bag ever sold garnered an impressive $1.9 million in a private sale.

  • A Himalaya Birkin, crafted from Niloticus crocodile skin and featuring Palladium Hardware, was especially prized and sold at Sotheby’s for over $450,000.

  • Limited edition Birkins such as the So Black Birkin have achieved significant sale prices, one example of which sold for over $208,000 at Christie’s.

  • Another distinct Birkin, the Faubourg Neige Birkin 20 Sellier, combined alligator and chèvre leather to resemble an Hermès storefront and was sold for $400,000. With the popularity of these bags, it’s no wonder that a new birkin bag is highly sought after.

These sales demonstrate the incredible value and desirability of luxury handbags, including Birkin bags, diamond himalaya birkin, and birkin handbags, in the luxury market.

Other notable sales included the Birkin 20 in Vert D’eau Matte Alligator with Gold Hardware which sold for approximately $115,570, reflecting the continued high value of exotic leathers.

Most expensive birkin bag

Celebrities and Their Influence on Birkin Bag Prices

Celebrities have a significant influence on Birkin bag prices. They promote Birkin bags through public appearances, serving as trendsetters and style icons, effectively increasing the bag’s popularity and demand. Celebrity ownership and their public endorsement contribute to higher demand and increased resale values of Birkin bags, as seen in auction transactions. 

Personalization and unconventional use of Birkin bags by celebrities, such as Kim Kardashian allowing her child to decorate her bag, adds uniqueness to the brand’s value.

Victoria Beckham’s immense collection of over 100 Birkin bags and similar prolific ownership by celebrities like Jamie Chua have specifically contributed to spikes in demand. The connection to prominent figures and its namesake echo the Birkin bag’s status as a symbol of achievement and cultural significance.

Celebrities with their Birkins

The Investment Potential of Birkin Bags

Birkin bags have outperformed traditional investments with an average annual return of 14.2% between 1984 and 2015, surpassing both the growth of gold and the S&P 500 Index in the same period. The ultra-luxury market, including luxury items such as Birkin bags, exhibits a strong resilience to economic downturns, which supports the idea of Birkin bags being a stable investment asset.

With a notable resale strength, particularly in Asian markets, pre-owned Hermès Birkin bags are highly sought after by collectors, often fetching prices that maintain or exceed their original value. Many consider Birkin bags not just as fashion accessories but as investment pieces, with their worth appreciated over time and expected to double in value over the next decade.

Invest in Birkin

Where to Purchase a Birkin Bag

Interested buyers must visit Hermès boutiques around the world, as Birkin bags are not available directly from the Hermès website. In Hermès boutiques, Birkin bags are not openly displayed but customers may be invited to view available bags in a private room based on the Sales Associate’s perception.

Fostering a relationship with a Hermès Sales Associate is vital for those intending to buy a Birkin bag directly from the boutiques. To develop this relationship, customers should frequently shop across different departments, display knowledge of Hermès products, and maintain a well-dressed appearance. Hermès imposes a quota system limiting customers to two Birkin or Kelly bags per year, but VIPs may have the option to custom order.

Specialized luxury resellers like Madison Avenue Couture offer a curated collection of authentic pre-owned Hermès Birkin bags. Reputable resale platforms such as The RealReal or Vestiaire Collective authenticate their items and provide another avenue to purchase Birkin bags. Auction houses known for luxury items may auction authentic Hermès Birkin bags, and it is essential to ensure they have a reputation for authentication.

Buying directly from Hermès boutiques or authorized high-end department stores guarantees the authenticity of Birkin bags.

Authenticating a Birkin Bag

With the existence of counterfeit Birkin bags, it emphasizes the importance of authentication to guarantee the acquisition of an authentic Hermès product. Authentic Hermes Birkin bags feature:

  • A stamp with the year of production and the craftsman’s ID code in a unique serif font, which should be crisp and clear

  • Distinct stitching patterns, with hand-done, slanted stitches that are perfectly straight and even

  • Utilizing a distinct orange color thread that matches the leather

These features are key indicators of a real Birkin bag.

Genuine Birkin bags have the following features:

  • Luxurious, supple leather that maintains a consistent color and texture

  • Distinct leather smell

  • High-quality metal hardware and accessories such as palladium or gold locks, keys, and a clochette

  • Hermès logo clearly engraved on the zippers

  • Serial number for verification

  • Engraved brand logos

  • Consistency in design and details when compared to official product photos

These features can help you determine the authenticity of a Birkin bag.

Orange Hermes

The Cultural Significance of the Birkin Bag

The Birkin bag has been prominently featured in television series such as ‘Sex and the City’ and ‘Gossip Girl’, making its mark as an iconic item in popular culture. The Birkin bag has transcended the fashion world to become a fixture in broader cultural discourse, including its mention in rap music lyrics. 

As a symbol of luxury, the Birkin bag is closely associated with its namesake, the actress Jane Birkin, further enhancing its iconic status. Its high value on the secondary market and allure to counterfeiters confirm the Birkin bag’s role as a cultural icon and a representation of the pinnacle of luxury.

Born from a chance encounter between Jane Birkin and Hermès’ Jean-Louis Dumas, the design of the Birkin bag has a unique story that contributes to its cultural lore. Despite evolving in size and variations, the Birkin bag has largely maintained its original design, underscoring its enduring appeal and timelessness as a fashion staple.

Jane Birkin’s complex relationship with the bag she inspired includes her efforts to use its success as a vehicle for charitable causes, intertwining luxury with philanthropy.


To sum up, the Hermès Birkin bag, with its rich history, iconic status, and high quality, stands as an emblem of luxury and exclusivity. Its price, influenced by factors such as materials, craftsmanship, size, color, rarity, and its condition, can range from $12,000 to a staggering $200,000. Celebrities and their influence, along with its investment potential, further contribute to its allure, making it not just a fashion accessory but an asset that appreciates over time. Whether you’re an avid collector, a fashion enthusiast, or an investor, the Birkin bag represents the pinnacle of luxury, style, and craftsmanship, making it a worthy addition to any collection.

Hermes Birkin  IN AND OUT Bag, Black Leather Hermes Birkin Bag

Frequently Asked Questions

How many styles of Birkin bags are there?

The Birkin bag comes in four standard sizes: Birkin 25, Birkin 30, Birkin 35, and Birkin 40. There is also a smaller size, the Birkin 20, which is available as a Limited Edition and may be available in exotic materials at its Paris Store.

How do you read a Hermes bag code?

To read a Hermes bag code, you can refer to a list that shows the year made and the corresponding letter stamped on the bag, framed inside a specific shape based on the year. This can help you determine the authenticity and age of the bag.

How do I identify my Birkin bag?

To identify your Birkin bag, look for the blind stamp which is usually found on the inside of the closure straps, inside the exterior pocket, or on the top inside of the side panel. Research the specific model's blind stamp location for accuracy.

What are the features of the Birkin bag design?

The Birkin bag features two rolled handles, a flap top, "feet," and a lock closure, making it a practical design that continues to be popular today.

How did the Birkin bag come into existence?

The Birkin bag came into existence after a chance meeting between British actress Jane Birkin and Hermès CEO Jean-Louis Dumas on a flight from Paris to London in 1984, where Birkin expressed her frustration with finding a suitable leather weekend bag. Inspired by her needs and style preferences, Dumas decided to create a practical, yet elegant leather bag.

Matilde Stadager Luxury bag expert and writer

Meet the Author

Matilde Stadager - Luxury Bag Expert & Writer 

Matilde Stadager is an expert in the world of high-end and fashion bags. With a great sense of the current trends, she has been a shopping advisor for clients of Collectors Cage for years. Her many years of experience includes doing authentication of products & sourcing designer bags. Matilde knows a lot about the history of the different fashion houses, and bag models. In her writings she shares all her experience with the readers.

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