If you’re looking to get started with an everyday carry kit, I’ve got you covered.
Let’s dive in!
What is Everyday Carry?
Everyday carry (EDC) refers to the items you have on your person on a daily basis.
Obviously, the concept is nothing new, but the whole point of EDC is to be intentional about what you carry. The ideal goal is to be as minimal and as functional as possible.
By curating what you carry, you can make sure you’re equipped for your daily activities and tasks while keeping heft to a minimum. (You’ll also enjoy the bonus of not having old receipts or lint taking up all your pocket space).
Best EDC Items
Even though EDC kits vary wildly from person to person, there are a few essentials that just about everyone will want to have handy, and I’ve picked out 8 of these must-have EDC items that are vital for a well-rounded daily kit.
For most people, a phone is the #1 most important piece of their EDC.
If you haven’t already, consider investing in a high-quality case and a durable screen protector that will keep your most valuable item safe.
Although society is becoming increasingly cashless (and even cardless), there’s a good chance you’re still carrying around some important plastic.
A slim wallet is a great way to maximize pocket space. Slim wallets typically hold about ten cards plus cash, which is more than enough for most people. Unless you absolutely need more storage, go with a slim wallet to streamline your EDC.
Keys are often the most annoying items to carry on your person. Thankfully, there are plenty of smart EDC solutions to make sure your keys don’t bulge or poke into your thigh.
If you only carry a few keys — or if your keys don’t spend a lot of time in your pockets — then a minimal keyring will do the trick.
However, if you carry several keys and keep them in your pocket at all times, then it’s worthwhile to pick up a key organizer. This will reduce bulk and make it easier to access each of your keys.
As tempting as smart watches are, don’t make the dive without giving it some thought. Some people get a ton of mileage out of the features a smart watch offers, but others simply don’t need those bells and whistles.
Sunglasses aren’t just for summer — they’re for any sunny weather, period. (Some experts even say you should wear sunglasses in winter).
A high-quality pair of sunglasses will ensure your eyes are protected at all times. Pop them in a sturdy glasses case, and you’re good to go.
If you wear prescription eyeglasses, you can either carry prescription sunglasses in a slim case or opt for a pair of clip-on shades.
While not as essential as the above items, a pair of earbuds or headphones is pretty darn important for anyone who commutes on public transportation or listens to music on the job.
Obviously, earbuds are much more compact, which makes them an easy choice if being minimal is your top priority. However, over-ear headphones can still work well in an EDC kit, especially if you carry a bag.
A good EDC pen covers so many bases: filling out paperwork, taking notes, signing receipts, and checking off grocery lists, to name a few.
Even if you’re not into knives, you should consider picking one up for the sheer practicality.
A good pocket knife has plenty of handy day-to-day uses, including opening packages, bottles, and letters. (And, of course, having a blade is also highly useful in a range of emergency situations).
Since not everyone carries the same objects, I feel it’s necessary to include a few other common EDC items. After all, these honorable mentions might very well be essentials for you.
EDC multi-tools have a lot to offer if you use a lot of tools on a daily basis. These are great for everything from doing home improvement work to camping and beyond.
If you find your hair drifting out of place as the day goes on, invest in a good pocket comb to keep everything where it should be. I really like this one from Beardbrand.
Finally, while it’s not that essential, a small EDC notebook is a neat addition to your kit. It’s most useful for scribbling notes, but it’s also great for things like sketching while on your lunch break.
EDC Frequently Asked Questions
New to the world of EDC? Here are a few basic questions you might have on your mind.
What are the basics of everyday carry?
In a nutshell, EDC basics are determined by what you need. However, for most people, the three most important EDC items are a phone, wallet, and set of keys.
What are the benefits of everyday carry?
Deliberately creating an EDC kit will allow you to ensure you have everything you need and prepare you for your day. It also helps keep you organized so your pockets and bags aren’t stuffed with clutter.
What is the purpose of an everyday carry knife?
EDC knives are typically used to open or cut things, with opening boxes being one of the most common use cases. But knives serve plenty of other purposes as well, especially in the great outdoors.
Where did the term every day carry come from?
It’s unclear where the term originated, but it most likely came from people taking the self-explanatory “everyday carry” and shortening it.
Today, EDC is a thriving subculture, but you don’t have to go down a gear-centric rabbit hole to experience the benefits of the concept.
Being mindful about what you have on your person simplifies your day-to-day and prepares you for your tasks and activities. It’s worthwhile to take the time to figure out what you need and build a minimal EDC kit.
That said, if you’ve got the essentials down pat and want to branch out, consider picking up some unusual EDC items.
Questions? Comments? Leave them below!