Anyone familiar with the luxury industry will have heard of Hermès. In fact, if you’re here and reading this, then the chances are that you not only know about Hermès but consider yourself a fan of the exquisite and high-value handbags which the brand releases; always with limited stock and always with a highly coveted aesthetic finish and design.
With that in mind, and with every Hermès bag garnering huge interest among style-conscious and investment buyers across the marketplace, and with Hermès and other luxury designer handbags growing an investment commodity in the world of finance, we thought we’d focus specifically on the most exotic bags and the materials that tip the scales towards the unique and iconic.
What you should know about Hermès
Founded in 1837, Hermès started life as a harness and bridal workshop, specialising in leather goods for noblemen who owned horses. First becoming the go-to in Paris in the niche equestrian market, Hermès then expanded into the everyday handbag market, launching in the American market in 1922.
From there, Hermès has expanded alongside the inspirations and creations of multiple designers and collaborations, and owes many of its most popular and coveted models to the buyers themselves, who generated demand among the mass market. Jane Birkin is famously responsible for the concept of the elite Birkin bag, while the Hermès Kelly owes its name to super fan Grace Kelly, who used her own Hermès Kelly bag to hide a pregnancy bump.
All of this contributes towards a brand which is not afraid to push boundaries, in both design and in material use – as you’ll learn in the next section of this article.
The most exotic and exclusive bags in the Hermès collection
The following bags are all authentic Hermès handbags that are considered among the most exclusive and in-demand on the market, owing to their unique designs and particularly the use of high-value and exotic materials.
Hermès Birkin 35 in Shiny Porosus Crocodile
With a shiny aesthetic and the authentic texture of the saltwater crocodile skin from which this bag is made, the Hermès Birkin 35 is one of the larger Birkin bags in the collection – holding its shape thanks to the durable structure and strength of the material.
If you get to see an Hermès Birkin in Shiny Porosus Crocodile up close and in the same vicinity as an Hermès made from alligator skin, you will notice the difference in the size of the scales – with the scales on this crocodile Birkin bag much more even and consistent in shape and size.
Hermès Mississippiensis Alligator Birkin
The Hermès Birkin, made from Mississippiensis alligator skin, boasts a balanced pattern across the very texture of the bag, owing to the differentiation in scales down the centre compared with down both outer edges of the bag. Made using the skin of the world’s largest alligator, which resides in America, this skin is used by Hermès to create its most superior range, with alligator leather considered a more premium material compared with crocodile. This of course lends itself to the exclusive status of Hermès as a brand, with the alligators required to make these bags being much rarer – making the material more difficult to get hold of and use.
Hermès Birkin in Himalayan Crocodile
Considered one of the most exclusive materials and finishes in the world of luxury handbags, we couldn’t create a list of exotic Hermès bags and not mention the Himalayan crocodile finish.
In 2014, Vogue released an article which cited a specific model of Himalayan Birkin bag as the most expensive bag that Hermès had ever produced and sold – and the status of this design hasn’t really dulled since. The design and colourway of the bag is intended to emanate the line of the Himalayan alps, while the use of Niloticus crocodile adds to the premium price tag and coveted status.
Hermès Faubourg Sellier Birkin
Faubourg is the name of the street where Hermès’ original store was located in Paris. As such, many iconic pieces and full collections are brought to life by Hermès with the Faubourg name attached to them – though none are quite as explicitly linked to the address as the limited number of Sellier Birkin bags. An exclusive design that boasts the aesthetic of the storefront on the bag itself, this premium Hermès bag, which was made from matte Béton alligator, white togo, and swift leather, made £225,000 at auction in 2021.
Should I invest in an Hermès handbag?
An Hermès bag presents an investment opportunity which, far from losing its value over time, is almost guaranteed to rise in financial value – provided you care for it, ensure its authenticity with a formal valuation and authentication process, and complete any sale through a reputable second-hand or preloved boutique store.
The benefit of an Hermès handbag is that the refined quality and coveted status of these bags, especially those crafted from the most exotic and rare materials, are constantly and consistently in high demand. This, combined with the limited release of each collection, means that the list of prospective buyers far outweighs the number of bags available – pushing resale prices high.
Where can I buy an Hermès Birkin bag?
If you’re looking for an Hermès Birkin bag, inspired by the actress Jane Birkin, who became the face and the name behind the everyday woman’s bag, here at Love Luxury we stock an ever-changing collection of authentic Hermès and other designer models. With our collection changing depending on what we buy in, we recommend keeping an eye on our website and our boutique store in Knightsbridge to make sure that you don’t miss your dream bag.
Trust us, the exotic and exclusive ones never hang around in our store for long!