For years, I struggled to set up my minimalist EDC. It was either too much, too little, or not versatile enough. After testing countless products and configurations, I finally found a formula.
Consisting of 7 things I never leave the house without, this modus operandi works in any country and any conditions.
As I consider myself an essentialist – adhering to the “fewer but better” rule – I choose high-quality, long-lasting products when it comes to my everyday carry.
The 7 things I never leave the house without
I should stress that I don’t include my phone on this list – not because I leave it at home – but for the fact that it’s rather obvious. Accordingly, this list contains some inconspicuous items that add genuine value to my life. Without further ado, here are the 7 things I never leave home without.
A keyholder is something I never really thought about before I moved into an apartment that had 3 different locks. I always had to carry at least 3 keys and leaving them in my pocket was no option. The keys would pierce my jeans and also scratch my phone. That’s where the Jamie Jacobs Key Boy comes in.
Made in Germany, this chic leather wrap can hold up to 10 keys – keeping them in place with screws. It doesn’t damage your pants and it also prevents the keys from scratching adjacent surfaces. A true lifesaver, it has been a worthy addition to my minimalist EDC.
Check out the Jamie Jacobs Keyholder on Amazon
2. Minimalist wallet
I spent years looking for the right wallet. I always struggled to find one that was small, beautiful, and practical at the same time. Most elegant small wallets couldn’t fit all of my cards while the bigger ones were too bulky – swelling my pockets. The solution came in the shape of the Bellroy Notesleeve.
With its diminutive size (only 102mm x 90mm) it fits into every pocket and doesn’t feel voluminous. It is nonetheless a genuine space wonder. Thanks to its clever layout, the Notesleeve can hold up to 11 cards as well as lots of bills and even a few coins.
Another Bellroy strong suit is its stately tanned leather, complete with an extra RFID-proof layer. This prevents thieves from stealing your bank data. Couple that to its woven fabrics – securing dependable longevity – and you get one of the best slim wallets on the market.
Check out the Bellroy Notesleeve on Amazon
3. Weekly planner notebook
Among the 7 things I never leave the house without is certainly also my Moleskine notebook.
Before you start ranting about how minimalists shouldn’t use ink and paper, hear me out.
A notebook feels personal and slow. It doesn’t emit annoying notifications – nor does it connect to social media. This is why I love writing down important things in a weekly planner. Simple and well-designed, the Moleskine furthers productivity and cuts out distractions.
In that same vein, an old-fashioned notebook also operates a clear separation between real priorities and never-ending connectivity. It only retains what you deliberately enter. This makes the Moleskine an excellent tool for intentional living and daily mindfulness.
Check out the Moleskine weekly planner on Amazon
In the spirit of journaling every day, a nice pen is an obligatory addition to any minimalist EDC.
Of course, there is no denying that any bog-standard pen will do. Carrying a nice pen, however, entails a certain panache – it makes daily journaling an event. I personally use the Caran d’Ache ballpoint pen.
Relatively inexpensive, it looks super sleek with its hexagonal form and its overall stylish design. Aside from its looks, it also provides a refreshing dose of comfort, especially for long-haul writing.
Check out the Caran d’Ache on Amazon
5. Hand cream
Another major component of my minimalist EDC is hand cream. Whether it’s after a gym session, a public transit ride, or a meeting, tending to your hands is an essential self-care habit.
After using Brickell’s face and beard products for a while, I tried out their hand cream and it didn’t disappoint. Its scent is very discrete but pleasant and its hand-healing effects ensure constant care. Its consistency is also quite strong which means that you don’t need a lot of cream to groom your hands. All of these strong points make Brickell’s hand balm one of the 7 things I never leave home without.
Check out Brickell’s Hand Balm on Amazon
As I mostly live in the Android ecosystem, I don’t use Apple’s Airpods. For the past two years, I have been using the Soundpeats and I have to say – I am truly impressed. For a fraction of the price of the Airpods, they deliver fantastic sound quality as well as refreshing noise cancellation.
I use them in the gym, on public transit, and in any other noisy environment. Aside from their performance, they also have a very sturdy feel and don’t take up too much space – a win-win situation.
Check out the Soundpeats True Wireless Earbuds on Amazon
7. Casio G-Shock
I’ve used it in the desert, the Amazon jungle, in deep seas, and in Arctic Finland. Better still, I’ve only had to change the battery once in 8 years.
In plain English, a military-grade G-Shock is indestructible. Factoring in its relatively low cost, the G-Shock is a great addition to any minimalist EDC, especially for athletes and adventurers.
Check out different G-Shock models on Amazon
Other points to consider when setting up a minimalist EDC
- Except for the hand cream and the wallet, all of these products are unisex.
- You might wonder whether all of these fit into a jacket. Yes, they do. When I travel in warmer climates or need to take my camera and laptop, I add them into my PacSafe 40L Vibe or my Peak Design 20L Everyday camera backpack.
Useful links on my minimalist EDC – the 7 things I never leave the house without
- more in the section “Design”
- read intentional consumption explained – 8 minimalist consumer habits