A decent wallet is a man’s best friend. If you really think about it, it holds all the money you’ll need to buy that damn dog in the first place. Of course there are general rules and guidelines to buying a quality wallet and none of these involves velcro or nylon.
If you’re in need of a place to put your hard earned pennies then you’re in luck. We’ve scoured the world to hunt down the best wallets for men which won’t only cater to a varying degree of tastes but should also outlast your mother-in-law.
The bi-fold is the quintessential mens wallet. They can handle everything you throw at them, bills, coins, cards and even room for that photo of mum and dad. Available in an enormous array of different colours, materials and patterns, you’re bound to find a bi-fold to suit your tastes and budget.
If you like the capacity of a bi-fold, but don’t want to limit yourself to a cardholder you might want to take a look at a slim wallet. These wallets pair the functionality and slimmer profile of a cardholder with the practicality and timelessness of a bi-fold. Slim wallets are a big trend these days, allowing you to carry everything you need, but nothing more.
Looking to keep your wallet small and minimalist? Card holders are the wallet for you. Whilst you’re limited in what you can carry (there isn’t room for your Westfield gift-voucher) you can expect a clean, often minimalist look that isn’t going to make you look like you have a third leg in your front pocket. All jokes aside, cardholders are at the forefront of functionality.
Also known as the ‘Murse’ (Man-purse), a zip pouch is pretty self explanatory. They typically consist of a pouch with a zip on one or more sides. They can easily hold various cards, cash, coins, headphones and any other small day-to-day items. In recent times zip pouches have become increasingly popular with men, brands like Comme Des Garcon and Common Projects have solidified them as a serious option (especially as you can lose things from them) for men on the hunt for a new wallet.
Travel & Tall Passport Wallets
If you travel a lot you’ll be familiar with the multitude of ‘essential’ items you need on you when your travelling. Passports, different currencies, frequent flyer cards, boarding passes, a good travel wallet should be able to take care of everything. Having all of these items in one, easily accessible place will streamline the arduous task of travel. Similarly if you believe the 80’s was the height of fashion and feel the need to carry 4 different Amexican Express cards at all times, then a long wallet will comfortably cater to your needs.
Campbell Cole Navy Simple Slim Card Wallet $180
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What Makes A Good Wallet
There are five key areas to look out for when searching for quality wallets for men: Leather grade, construction, the turnover, pleated corners and creasing. Each one plays a vital role in not just serving its purpose but ensuring that the integrity and longevity of the accessory will stand the test of everyday abuse.
When it comes to leather grade, try to avoid ‘top grain’ leather as these are hides which have imperfections that have been sanded down and then covered in resin to form a smooth surface. The internal strength is there but it leaves the wallet feeling more like plastic than anything. Full grain leather which has not been corrected is the way to go and it also adds character as it ages naturally.
Scoping out how the wallet is made is often ignored but just as crucial as the leather grade. Wallets are made in two ways: Turned of Cut Edge. Cut Edge is the shortcut way where leather is cut, stitched together and then resin coated on the edging. When this resin wears away it will reveal frayed leather. Turned is where the leather is thinned down before stitching to create a more seamless bond. It’s a lengthier production process but will last much longer than the latter.
Testing the integrity of a wallet is a must if you’re going to drop a good amount of money on one. One way to do this is to test the width of the turnover (the bend) as well as the stitching position. A narrow turnover is what you should be looking for in a quality wallet as well as stitching which remains central and straight.
Another key indicator to a well crafted wallet is its corners. Pleated corners are leather bonding areas on the edge which have been thinned down before being rounded into a strengthened corner – that means no cutting of this area. If the corner is a right angle, it has been poorly made. Avoid at all costs.
A good wallet must stand the rigours of everyday use and wear. To determine if this is the case, look for any creases on the leather that have been made by a hot iron on the turned edge stitching and card slots.
On Trend Styles
Wallet trends come and go just like fashion but one mainstay is the continual slimming down of the men’s wallet. With pay wave technology pretty much negating the need for thick wads of cash to be carried around, wallets are starting to get thinner to accommodate just the bare essentials like cards. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as bulky wallets filled with receipts from 1999 should no longer be a part of the modern gentleman’s wardrobe.
When looking for the latest wallet for men styles, go with the colours, textures or patterns that best reflects your own personal style. If you’re the conservative type, opt for darker colours with minimalist designs. For the more creative type of guy, take a look at brighter colours, graphics prints or elaborate finishings and chain attachments to show off your unique style.
Although bear in mind that this wallet will go with you from the boardroom to the bar, so what you choose will be a reflection of your personality amongst peers.