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With increasing cashless transactions, cards on our smartphones and digital receipts, old-school wallets are feeling obsolete. But, even though our pockets might be lighter, most guys still need a place to carry ID, a few credit cards, and maybe some bills. Here’s where the best minimalist wallets come in.
Lending a streamlined design with just enough space for the essentials, the best minimalist wallets deliver a lightweight feel, less pocket bulk and an easier time at cash registers (no digging through expired cards and crumpled receipts). They inspire a more economical everyday carry, motivating us to stash just what we need and nothing more. Plus (and this is important), minimalist wallets are designed to fit in a front pocket.
These benefits have turned out to be game-changers for many guys, leading to a burgeoning market of minimalist wallets from new and established brands alike. Among these are tactical metal wallets (sometimes with extra multitool-style features), front-pocket leather cardholders and pared-down bifold wallets. Basically, there’s now a minimalist wallet for everyone.
What Are the Best Minimalist Wallets?
Wallets have an important job of securing our valuables, so we think it’s worthwhile to shop around a bit before making a purchase. Here are a few things to consider while choosing the best minimalist wallet for your pocket.
Style: Minimalist wallets come in a few styles; tactical, cardholder and bifold styles are the main three. Tactical wallets are usually two metal panels with an elastic cinch to compact cards and cash. These sometimes have built-in tools (like a knife or ruler). Cardholders are a simple square with open access to card slots, often as well as a cash pocket. Bifold minimalist wallets offer the familiar two-piece folding wallet in a more compact size.
Material: While some of the best minimalist wallets are made of classic, high-quality leather, others feature modern metal constructions. No matter which direction you go, make sure the material is sturdy and durable.
Size: In order to fit in your front pocket, a minimalist wallet should be around 4 x 4 inches or smaller. But you’ll also want to make sure that it can fit all your cards cash.
The Best Minimalist Wallets
Below, you’ll find a few of the best wallets for any style from brands like Filson, Tom Ford and other brands and designers.
1. The Ridge Wallet Aluminum Cash Clip
Launched through Kickstarter in 2013, the Ridge Wallet has become a leader in the minimalist wallet space. And it’s easy to understand why. The Ridge wallet boasts a ruthlessly minimal style that can pack up to 12 cards, plus cash on an exterior clip, in a 3.5 x 2.25-inch design. Built using two high-quality metal panels, the wallet can also be customized by swapping out color plates (a Torx driver is included for doing this). It also features RFID blocking technology to keep your cards safe from skimming pickpocket attempts.
2. Harber London Super Slim Leather Passport Wallet
For a more classic look, check out the Super Slim wallet from Harber London. Using an unconventional top-access setup, the slim wallet can fit around six cards in a back pocket, bills in a front pocket and even a passport in the main compartment. These pockets are separated by soft wool felt, and the exterior is made of rugged yet supple full grain leather that gets more handsome with age.
3. Dango T01 Tactical EDC Wallet
Another great metal tactical-style wallet is this Dango T01. Hidden within the genuine leather and aerospace-grade aluminum exterior is a collection of covert tools, including a knife, paracord tensioner, smartphone stand and nail pryer. Despite these tools and a 12-card capacity, the wallet is still compact enough to slide in your front pocket. There’s also a strap for holding cash on the outside, and the multitool is removable for getting through TSA.
4. Filson Bridle Leather Front Pocket Wallet
Filson did something clever with this front pocket wallet by designing it with a curved bottom. It slips comfortably into most pants, but still has enough space for credit cards and some cash. As with all Filson products, the build quality and vegetable-tanned, North American bridle leather are top-notch, and the wallet should last for years — if not decades. It is on the small side, even for a minimalist wallet, so we recommend choosing this if you carry only a few cards.
5. Trayvax Armored Summit Wallet
If durability is a primary concern, go for this Trayvax Armored Summit wallet. It’s made of heat-resistant steel that’s been finished with melonite, and the cinch is rugged MIL-SPEC nylon webbing. The wallet will fit up to eight cards, plus cash in an integrated money clip, and a built-in bottle opener is sure to come in handy. There’s also a convenient attachment point for keychains or small carabiners.
6. Bellroy Slim Sleeve
The bifold wallet setup is classic for a reason. This Bellroy Slim Sleeve wallet modernizes the popular style with a smaller, 3.75-inch square size. You can still fit quite a few cards — up to 12 — ensuring ample room for most users. We’re also fans of the wallet’s no-frills style, marked only by a small Bellroy logo embossed on the outside.
7. Tanner Goods Journeyman Front Slim Wallet
Tanner Goods takes an ultra-minimal approach with this Journeyman wallet but keeps things classy with a tooling leather construction. Measuring just under 4 x 3 inches, the wallet is compact but big enough for several cards, plus cash in the main compartment (you will need to fold the cash for it to fit). The wallet fits nicely in a front pocket, and accessing cards or cash is very easy.
8. Tom Ford Printed Full-Grain Leather Cardholder
For an upscale pick, check out this cardholder from Tom Ford. First, you’ll notice the low-key, bold animal print pattern and the gold Tom Ford logo stamped on the front. Second, you’ll feel the thing: It’s made of supple, full-grain calfskin leather that’s soft to the touch. In terms of space, the wallet features four card slots (each will fit more than one card) and a main compartment for folded bills, receipts or more cards. Overall, it’s a treat for any front pocket.