Failure criteria are derived for the case of a quasi-isotropic laminate and for the more general case of orthotropic laminates. The former requires two calibrating failure properties obtained directly from laminate testing and the latter requires five standard experimental measurements for its calibration. Then the quasi-isotropic failure theory is taken much further, also admitting full calibration by only the two composites tow failure properties, the associated unidirectional tensile, and compressive strengths. The theoretically predicted failure envelope for the quasi-isotropic laminate is favorably compared with some comprehensive testing data. As a related matter, the general failure criteria for unidirectional fiber composites are also reviewed.