Everyday Carry Gear: A Beginner’s Guide to EDC


Everyday Carry Gear or EDC Gear, from the term itself, refers to the items that can be easily carried in your pockets or bags on a daily basis. More often than not, these are what you consider essentials. If there are some things that you cannot leave the house without, those are considered your EDC.

Every EDC has its function or purpose. Having these essentials in your pockets or bags give you a healthy sense of preparedness for whatever you may face ahead of the day. The term EDC goes beyond extra money or gum sticks— it encompasses little items that will come handy in completely unexpected adverse situations.


Advantages of Everyday Carry Gear

Many people have already adopted the idea of Everyday Carry Gear. However, some still doubt its practical application. If you are one of those people, consider the following advantages:

·         Self-Reliance

The best thing about a list of Everyday Carry Gear EDC is that it promotes self-reliance. EDC items do not just aid your daily activities. They can also become purposeful in times of emergencies that you would not see coming. If you are on the brink of danger and lack these items in your pockets or bags, you might not be able to do something about it.

·         Convenience

Since you have your essentials with you, you would not have to look for them in your office desks. If you have to write something when in a meeting, for example, you can just check your bag for a pen and a notebook to write in. Moreover, you would not have to worry about misplacing or losing your items.

·         Individualization

Customizing your Everyday Carry Gear list in accordance to your needs is a strong statement of your individuality. Having a refined EDC kit is a great reflection of your being, which is one of the best things about purchasing your EDC items. Every EDC item comes in various styles, shapes, sizes, and colors, allowing you to pick the best ones that suit your personality.

Common Items in an EDC

·         Wallet

Without a wallet, it is just impossible to leave the house. It is where you store your cash, credit and debit cards, and IDs. It may not be as important as what is inside, but it plays a vital role in keeping your things organized at all times. If you are worried about bulky wallets, you can opt for a slim wallet. With it, you can conveniently carry your money in your pocket. At the same time, you can buy a separate cardholder for your IDs and cards.

·         Smartphone

In today’s modern world, a smartphone is already considered a necessity. Its functions are no longer limited for communication purposes. Today’s technology already allows you to take high-quality photos and videos, write notes, create reminders, set alarms, and calendar appointments, and even to look for nearby restaurants, reserve movie tickets, buy stuff from online portals, get cab rides, etc. If you do not want to carry cameras, watches, pens, notepads, flashlights, among others, your smartphone is your perfect companion. Simply speaking, it allows you to reduce the bulk of your EDC.

·         Multitool

A multitool is the perfect embodiment of the EDC concept. It promotes convenience, versatility, and handiness. It is also lightweight and comes in pocket size. With a multitool, you are like having a mini toolbox that comes with complete items that will allow you to perform quick tinkering and fixing. Most multi-tools come with bottle openers, screwdrivers, pliers, scissors, etc. They are also easy and safe to use so whether you have prior experience or not, using a multitool will not be a problem.

A good multitool – Leatherman Wingman. Read a detailed review here.

·         Key Organizer

A key organizer is important since keys can be clunky and easily misplaced at times. With a single key organizer in your list of Everyday Carry Gear, you would not have to worry about losing your keys. You can integrate the keys to your house doors, drawers, and even cars in one keychain to ensure that it will always be in your EDC. You just really have to be mindful and always set aside spare keys because once you lose this chunk, it will cause you an unwanted hassle.

·         Flashlight

Flashlights are essential to help you navigate in the dark or other emergencies. While most smartphones already have built-in flashlights, you would want to conserve your phone’s battery life as much as possible especially during extreme situations. It is not just advisable for those going on extreme outdoor activities. Even if you live in an area where power outages are rare, it is still highly recommended to be prepared at all times.

Furthermore, having the best flashlight is useless without ample battery or power. Given that, make sure to always have extra batteries to power your flashlight should its current power run out.

·         Pen

While you can use your smartphones to keep and write notes, sometimes it is still better to do it the traditional way. If you are running low on battery, a pen, and paper is just the way to do it as well. With it, you can take notes, sign documents, endorse checks, etc.

The most recommended EDC pen is the fisher space pen. While it may cost more than a regular pen, it will make the most out of your spending. EDC enthusiasts find the fisher space pen extra pleasing for their everyday carry.

·         Pocket Notebook

Of course, a pen without a pocket notebook is kind of useless, especially if you need to jot notes on a daily basis. If you are fond of writing your thoughts and ideas, having a notepad in your EDC is just as important as having your smartphone. The same goes for artists who would not go a day without sketching when they are bored. Truthfully, there is an unspoken glory in being able to write using a pen and a paper every once in a while. Now and then, our thumbs get tired of having to type continuously.

·         EDC Knife

A keychain knife or a pocket knife comes handy in many ways, surprisingly. For most people, such dangerous weapon should not be in anyone’s bag on a daily basis. However, it can be functional when responsibly used. Of course, no mobile app that serves is a knife is yet available; hence, it is the most efficient tool you can use to perform complex tasks such as slicing and cutting.

In some countries and cultures, carrying a knife might not be allowed, but it is important to consider the practicality of having one in your Everyday Carry Gear list.

·         Paracord

Paracord (or Parachute cord) is an extremely useful nylon rope, which commonly found in survival gear kits. As such, paracord is very appropriate for everyday carry. Paracord can be adapted for almost any use. And in certain situations, it could save your life. Originally used in the military, paracord became available to civilians after World War II as military surplus. One of the most famous applications of paracord in history occurred when astronauts used paracord to repair the Hubble Space Telescope.

I wrote a complete guide about this versatile rope and uses for paracord in this article.

·         Water Bottle

The best water bottle is the one that can fit in your EDC bag without making a mess. If you live in areas with high humidity, it is a priority to stay dehydrated at all times. Moreover, if you are having a long day, you need an efficient water supply that will sustain you throughout the day. Should you get thirsty, you would not have to buy expensive bottled waters or resort to unhealthy alternatives such as sodas, energy drinks, juice drinks, iced coffees, etc. to quench your thirst.

·         Watch

While your smartphone already provides you the time, it is still important to have a watch as a backup. Smartphones should not be the primary source of time. For busy professionals, having to pull off their smartphones from their pockets just to check the time can come off as a rude behavior especially during important meetings.

At the same time, checking your smartphone now and then just to check the time can degrade your battery life in the long run. Furthermore, a second-hand plays a huge role during emergency situations. Not all clocks in smartphones have a second hand.

·         Disposable Lighter

A disposable lighter is handier than a box of matches. It is perfect for emergencies such as blackouts or if you ever get lost somewhere. However, you just have to make sure that you have something to light (i.e. fireplace, candles, bonfire, etc.). While the likelihood of its necessity is quite little, it is still important to be prepared.

If you smoke, this is, of course, the number one item in your EDC. It saves you from the hassle of borrowing or buying, especially when you are alone or trying to save money. Just stick it in your box of cigarette and you are ready to go.

Do You Really Need These Items?

You might be wondering if all the EDC mentioned above are important for you to have. Well, it depends on you. Having an EDC is all about personalization as well. Just take what you believe will become handy during unexpected circumstances, along with the things you cannot go without, to create your unique list of Everyday Carry Gear.

Be mindful of factors such as everyday tasks, budget, style, lifestyle, activities, locations, etc. These things will allow you to consider what to put in your everyday carry the next time you go out. After all, it is you who will decide what items will make you feel secure and covered for every errand or activity.


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