As much as every man hates to admit it, we envy women’s purses. Purses allow women to stylishly and comfortably tote around any- and every-thing, from their essential wallet and keys to lotions, notepads, and even food.
Meanwhile, most men must make do with excruciatingly limited pocket space — unless he opts for cargo shorts, which are just excruciating. The fact remains that appropriate men’s bags are rare, yet men must find creative and careful ways to carry their daily essentials.
Thus, the art of everyday carry (EDC) was born.
What Is EDC?
At its most basic, EDC includes any item a person lugs around every day — not because they are trapped in a purse or pocket but because that person truly needs them no matter where he or she goes.
Women and men alike have a set of EDC items, but many women don’t consider their system because they have ample room in their bags to fit everything they need, and then some. Thus, the art of EDC has generally become a man’s game, and plenty of participants have taken EDC to the next level.
What Are Common EDC Items?
There are a three items every person needs to survive and thrive in the modern world, no matter who that person is. These items include:
Keys: House and/or car
Wallet: With identification, cash, and cards
Phone: Preferably a smartphone
Aside from these fundamentals, there is a handful (or pocketful) of addition items most EDC-forward men prefer to have with them on a daily basis. Without exception, these items have crucial functions that make life easier on-the-go.
These items must be stylish, discreet, and above all, simple. The following typify the list:
Watch: For when your phone is out of reach
Pen and Notebook: For those bursts of inspiration
Knife: For cutting, obviously
Flashlight: For unexpected (and expected) darkness
Multi-tool: With pliers, screwdrivers, tweezers, bottle openers, scissors, and more
What Are the Advantages of the EDC System?
To be honest, all men already have some degree of EDC in place, but most aren’t conscious of what they choose to fill their pockets. Therefore, without a deliberate system, most men aren’t taking advantage of their pocket space and their items’ usefulness.
Three words define the EDC movement better than any others: utility, versatility, and probability. The EDC system ensures that a man can do more with less. The items that he carries are high-quality and upgraded to provide the optimal functionality with minimal weight and bulk. EDC merges convenience with preparedness.
Ideally, a man’s EDC will prepare him not only for his regular daily adventures but the unexpected (and possibly perilous) events as well.
Additionally, EDC is about style and personal expression. Simplicity is chic, and simplicity is the essence of EDC. Plus, most people recognize the exceedingly intimacy of a person’s belongings.
When a man pares down his EDC to his bare essentials, those around him have the opportunity to gain deeper insight into who that man truly is.
Though it isn’t necessarily at the forefront of most EDC-ers’ thoughts, savings is also a major element of prioritizing pocket space. By investing in just a few high-quality items, a man can avoid additional spending every year to replace or repair his current essentials.
While many EDC beginners may feel the upfront expenses of the EDC lifestyle are untenable, most will grow to understand that substantial upfront spending on superior goods costs less in the long-term.
What Else Do You Need?
Different lifestyles will necessitate different EDC systems. For example, if you vape, you will need to find satisfying e-cigarettes that fit your EDC.
Alternatively, if you need to carry tools for your work, like a laptop or tablet computer, you will need some kind of bag to transport them safely and comfortably. This extra space might impact what you select to include in the rest of your EDC.
The best way to start building your EDC is to empty you pockets and understand what you already tote around. Then, you should make a list of your usual daily tasks, and you should discern whether any of these tasks would be made easier with a particular gadget. EDC forums tend to have excellent solutions for beginners looking to curate their pockets for the first time.
When you feel more comfortable with your standard EDC, you can begin to experiment with upgrades and additions, like augmented keyrings and more advanced multi-tools. Because EDC is so personal, you can never have an incorrect EDC, which means you should feel free to try new systems as you see fit.