Best Flip & Pocket Knives reviewed by Everyday Carry

Flip & Pocket Knives

If you've seen photos of what people carry every day, you might be wondering, “why do so many people carry a pocket knife?” The answer is different for everyone, but it all comes back to the idea that a handy pocket knife is an indispensable tool.

People use their EDC knife everywhere, whether they're at work (say, opening a package) or at home (making a quick repair around the house). Having a knife can also potentially save your life in an emergency (cutting a seatbelt) or in a survival situation if you spend time outdoors.

That said, knives may be restricted depending on where you live and what your local laws are, so be aware of those before deciding what kind of pocket knife you can carry.

The Best Pocket Knife for Everyday Carry

When picking the best pocket knife for your everyday carry, you should consider a bunch of factors: how big the knife is, how it opens, how it locks (or doesn't), how you'll carry it, how durable it needs to be, and so on.

Remember, you'll want a knife that's comfortable (both in your hand and in your pocket), built to last, safe to use, and legal to carry.

For a few ideas, check out our guide to the Best Pocket Knives Under $50. If you live where knife laws are a bit more strict, check out some of our non-locking blade recommendations too.

Different Types of Pocket Knives for Everyday Carry

Because different people have different requirements their knife needs to meet, you'll find tons of different kinds of pocket knives. They serve different purposes, have different designs and styles, and come at a range of different price points.

Some are classic and recognizable, like the all-in-one Swiss knives with multiple tools built in, or the traditional old timer knives your grandpa used to carry with wood or bone handles. Tactical knives and fast-opening flipper or flip knives are more popular these days for their advanced features and attractive designs.

Scroll down to discover some of the best and most noteworthy pocket knives on the site.

The Best EDC Knives Under 3" in 2017

When it comes to your EDC knife, size matters. And bigger isn't always better. A knife that's too big can be unwieldy to use and carry, not to mention illegal depending on where you live. On the flip side, a knife that's too small might take more effort for even simple tasks. For a lot of you, the best EDC knife is just under 3" long. In this guide, we'll break down why you might want a smaller knife, what to look for in a compact EDC, and highlight 10 EDC knives around the 2.5” to 3” sweet spot that are a cut above the rest.

The Beginner's Guide to EDC Knife Blade Steels

Your EDC knife is only as good as the steel in its blade. A knife made of good steel will be sharp, stay sharp, and won't break on you. On the other hand, knives made of dubious steel are unreliable and downright unsafe. They tend to dull easily and end up chipping and breaking when you need them most. There's a lot of blade steels to pick from, and each has its own set of advantages to consider for your EDC. In this guide, we'll go over what to look out for in a steel before buying your next blade. To make things even easier, we'll give a few examples of our favorite knives made of each type of steel.

Benchmade 319 Proper

When you think of a proper gent's knife, Benchmade knives probably aren't the first to come to mind. But with their new 319 "Proper," that's all about to change. It's Benchmade's first take on a classic slip joint folder. It's a non-locking folding knife with a ton of character, crafted by one of the best blade makers in the USA. It’s significantly less aggressive than Benchmade's usual offerings thanks to the blade size, shape, and handle materials, but it's every bit as capable for EDC.

Instead of the cheap carbon steel you commonly see on slip joints, the Proper uses a corrosion-resistant, American-made CPM S30V steel on its 2.86” blade. Its sheepsfoot blade shape is ideal for a variety of cutting and slicing tasks, thanks to the large belly and distinct point. In keeping with the traditional slip joint design, the Proper comes with scales made of either red contoured G10 or a dark green micarta resin that both give a unique tactile feel and extra grip. It opens and closes with a nail nick and the slip joint mechanism keeps it firmly in place. There’s no pocket clip, but there is a lanyard hole so you can easily grab it from your pocket.

If you've been wanting a knife of Benchmade's caliber but prefer less tactical knives, the Proper is an excellent place to start. Pick up this modern, soon-to-be-classic from Benchmade via the link below.

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Victorinox Pioneer Olive Alox 2017 Limited Edition

If there's one piece of kit that can work its way into any EDC, it'd be a Swiss Army Knife. You probably already own one for its handy set of tools in an all-in-one package. With all the different models, sizes, colors, and tool configurations of Swiss Army Knives, they've become a popular collectible in the carry community. This year's limited edition release is equipped to tick all the right boxes as a new crowd favorite: a pocket-friendly 93mm size, durable and slim Alox scales, and best of all, a classic olive drab green color to accent any carry style.

The new olive digs come to one of the most well-rounded models of the Swiss Army Knife in the Pioneer. It's sized just right for all-around use in the hand and in the pocket at 3.5” long and half an inch thick. The Pioneer offers an excellent tool set for general EDC utility: a large main blade, a reamer/punch for poking, a combination can opener/small screwdriver, and a combination large screwdriver/bottle opener/wire stripper. Lastly, a keyring attachment gives you the option of tossing it on your keys or outfitting it with a paracord lanyard for better retrieval, grip, and emergency utility.

If you find the Pioneer too big for your EDC needs, you can also opt for the smaller Cadet or keychain-sized Classic Swiss Army Knives in the limited edition olive green Alox finishes as part of this year's release. Check out the Pioneer at the link below.

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Benchmade 560 Freek

When it comes to your EDC knife, having the right grip on it can make all the difference. A good grip grants more control, which makes cutting tasks both easier and safer. The new Benchmade 560 Freek, with its dual polymer handle, gives you the kind of precise control you want out of your EDC blade.

It starts with the simple yet reliable blade opening and lock on this knife. The thumbstud on the 3.6" S30V blade offers easy one-handed opening. That blade stays locked in place during even hard use via Benchmade's signature ambidextrous AXIS lock. The blade itself also has jimping at the spine, giving you fine control during precision tasks.

But the real source of control is the dual-polymer handle on this knife. It's made of a combination of lightweight and grippy Grivory and Versaflex polymers. The handle materials are also cut in a diamond and striped pattern for more texture to grip. And the handle is large enough for your fingers to wrap around it for a firm grip.

The Benchmade 560's superior ergonomics will help you make quick work out of any cutting tasks ahead of you. Grab one for yourself at the link below.

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10 Wood Handle EDC Knives

There's something special about the way a knife with a wood grain handle looks and feels when it's in your hand. It's a classy and timeless look you don't get with the trendy metal and polymer handles that you see on other knives. And unlike most knife handle materials, wood grain only gets better with age. Wooden handled knives like this can be more than just a tool in your EDC. You might even treasure one enough to pass down like an heirloom. In this guide, we've put together this list of our favorite knives with wooden handles, ranging from classic traditional knives to modern tools with an organic touch.

Spyderco Efficient

If you're looking for a solid EDC knife that won't break the bank, efficiency is king. You want a knife with high-end features and serious performance at a comfortable price point. With a name like the Efficient, Spyderco has put together a value blade that's more than up to the challenge.

The Efficient is a folding knife made with many of the hallmarks of Spyderco's higher end offerings. It's classic Spyderco design language throughout, from the large thumbhole opening to the thoughtful ergonomic details. For example, the thumbhole allows easy one-handed opening for both righties and lefties. Paired with its reversible clip, it's EDC-friendly from the moment you slip it in your pocket right up to the cutting task at hand.

When in use, grippy G10 scales on an already ergonomic handle give you a firm grasp on the knife. Jimping on the choil and on the top of the blade give even more precision.

You'll appreciate that kind of control too, since the Efficient is seriously sharp. It sports a 3”, full flat ground, plain edge drop point blade. That'll make short work of most everyday cutting tasks, and its 8Cr13Mov stainless steel is easy to touch up after extended use.

With this feature set, the Efficient comes in as a new contender for one of the best value folders you can EDC, dollar-for-dollar. Pick one up at the link below.

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Jho Knives GS1

"Jho Knives‘ Gentleman Slasher aka GS1 is a pocket knife inspired by the straight razor. Its nearly square blade is almost invisible when folded into its angular handle. It comes with a leather case, T6 & T8 screwdrivers and..." (via TheAwesomer)

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The Best Box Cutters and Utility Knives for EDC

Just because it seems like your EDC knife is versatile enough to use for every task doesn't always mean you should. Things like driving screws or prying in a pinch can seriously wreck your blade. But there's one task in particular you might be doing nearly every day: opening boxes.

For that, it doesn't matter how sharp your everyday carry knife is: it isn't the best tool for the job. All that cardboard and tape can dull your blade and gunk it up fast. Keep your EDC sharp for more crucial situations, and let a box cutter with replaceable blades do the dirty work.

You might think utility knives like this would be way too big to EDC, but there's actually a handful of convenient, pocket-friendly options worthy of a spot in your daily kit. To make things easy, we've put together this guide of our favorites for you to choose from.

Para-Claw Survival Bracelet

"Paracord-equipped survival bracelets are nothing new. But one that hides a 1.5-inch hawkbill blade made of 8Cr13MoV stainless steel in its clasp? The Para-Claw Survival Bracelet secures this blade in a glass reinforced nylon guard and deploys quickly using just a single hand — because that’s all you’ll have to work with considering the bracelet will be strapped to the other. For grip the blade boasts a groove underneath and..." (via GearHungry)

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CRKT Vizzle

Sometimes the best knives come as a surprise. If you gravitate towards the more minimal, gent's knife type of designs, you'd know many of them sacrifice some key features for a sleeker aesthetic and smaller size. The Jesper Voxnaes-designed, CRKT-produced Vizzle, on the other hand, flips the script. It's one of those rare, larger-sized minimalist knife options that conceals some unexpected features in an attractive design that's as low-profile as ever.

That's mostly in part due to how the 3.35” blade practically disappears when closed, nestling almost flush in the slender, stainless steel handle. Relative to the blade, the Vizzle's handle measures proportionally longer than most knives. That not only gives those of you with larger hands a better grip on the knife while in use, but it also streamlines the silhouette of the knife even further.

Two key, functional features stand out in the otherwise simple, stonewashed handle. First, a ridged thumbhole in the middle of the handle gives you a stable grip when deploying (or fidgeting with) the knife. Next, a flipper tab allows for effortless one-hand opening thanks to the Vizzle's IKBS ball bearing pivot. As for the blade itself, it's made with 8Cr13MoV steel and features a satin finish and a plain edge. For one more surprisingly useful hidden feature, the stainless steel framelock that keeps the knife in place even has an overtravel stop screwed into the lock bar itself.

In classic Voxnaes fashion, a black polymer backspacer adds contrast and a lanyard attachment point to the open-back construction of the knife. Because it's on the hefty side at 4.6 oz, you'll appreciate the included clip to help comfortably EDC the knife in your pocket. Overall, the Vizzle offers plenty of substance for such a minimalist design. Grab one for your EDC at the link below.

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The Best Compact Fixed Blade Knives for Everyday Carry

If you're looking for a compact everyday carry knife, you might think that a folding knife is your only option. But have you considered a fixed blade? At first glance they might not seem like the best for EDC, but you'd be surprised. They actually offer a few advantages over their folding counterparts that make them better-suited for your EDC. In this guide we'll break down the benefits of fixed blades and show you 10 excellent options that offer serious performance at a size and weight that puts some folders to shame.

B-2 Nano Blade

"If you’ve been carrying a 3- to 4-inch bladed folding knife in your EDC rotation, you know that even titanium can’t overcome the bulk factor of such a cutter. Bomber & Company engineers have overcome that obstacle with the B-2 Nano Blade, the world’s smallest tactical pocket knife (note: it’s much smaller than it looks). Inspired by the B-2 Stealth Bomber, the Nano Blade is concealable, tough, and utilitarian meets badass. The Nano’s blade is split with serrated and sharp edges utilizing a chisel ground and..." (via GearHungry)

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Massdrop x Ferrum Forge Falcon S35VN Folding Knife

While mass-produced knives can get the job done, there's a difference between a knife that simply cuts and one that slices with style. And when you put together three industry icons' heads together to design and produce a knife, you can bet the result is nothing short of extraordinary. Designed by Ferrum Forge, a small operation out of San Diego that's big on custom design and quality, manufactured by WE Knife Co., a solid production company already making waves in the knife world, and produced by Massdrop, the hobbyist and enthusiast destination, extraordinary is exactly what you get with the Ferrum Forge Falcon.

Simply handling the Falcon gives you an idea of how scrutinized its design and features were, as expected of a custom knife from Ferrum Forge. S35VN steel was selected for its blade, the flagship steel from Crucible Industries and Chris Reeve that gives impressive performance and edge retention.

Don't be fooled by the blade's compact 2.9” length (you'll appreciate being able to carry it in more places, though). It features a bold, drop point design with details that draw your hand towards a secure grip. These include a large finger choil to lock your index finger in place while cutting, and a concave cutout with jimping along the blade's spine for a secure thumb grip.

The Falcon's understated handles belie the fit, finish, and function within them. 6AL4V titanium gives the knife an excellent strength while keeping a light weight, and titanium's springiness lends itself to a more reliable frame lock. The Falcon's blade deploys through Ferrum Forge's caged bearing flip action, giving it a smooth and effortless action that lets you get to the cutting much faster.

While engaged, the blade is held in place with a hardened steel lockbar insert, designed for the long haul to keep the knife safe even with hard use. A reversible 3D-machined titanium clip rounds out the Falcon's handle features, letting righties and lefties alike carry the knife with ease.

Thanks to WE Knife Co's production capability and Massdrop's enthusiast reach, the Falcon can reach the hands and pockets of every knife user, from collectors to hard-use outdoorsmen. Check out the link below to grab this one-of-a-kind collaboration for yourself.

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Kershaw Reverb

One look at Kershaw's new Reverb and you already know it's a knife built for everyday carry. It's clear from the sweeping edge on its blade to its minimalist construction, not to mention the built-in carabiner. The Reverb—true to its name—echoes features on both urban and outdoor knives to give you a unique blade that fits any EDC. As an ultralight pack knife it's indispensable as much as it is invisible, and as an everyday knife it's as capable as it is compact.

While its 8Cr13MoV steel blade measures only 2.5”, it makes the most of its length with its excellent blade geometry. Its modified drop-point shape, sweeping belly, and piercing point let it handle a variety of cutting tasks. It conspicuously doesn't come with Kershaw's SpeedSafe assisted opening, thumb stud, or flipper tab (meaning nothing to snag on your gear). But thanks to a recess on the blade, manually opening the Reverb one-handed is easy.

Dual-material handles give both style and strength where they're needed. G-10 with a contoured carbon fiber overlay keeps the Reverb's front handle light, while its rear handle comes in steel to lend extra strength to its frame lock. These handles are also home to a pocket clip and carabiner, giving you plenty of options for carrying the knife, whether clipped in your pocket or hanging off your pack. And at only 1.6 ounces, it's one of the most versatile ultralight knives you can add to your EDC. You can pick up the Reverb from Kershaw at the link below.

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Boker Plus Office Survival

It's hard to find the right EDC knife for an office environment. That's because traditional knives, even classy ones, can bring unwanted attention. If you want a knife that's low profile and discreet at work, the Boker Plus Office Survival is for you. It's an ergonomic pen knife that looks right at home at your desk or clipped to your pocket like any other pen at work.

The Office Survival is a collaboration design with custom maker Jim Wagner. It emphasizes tactical ergonomics and light duty performance in a familiar, discreet form factor. With a flick of the thumbstud, you'll find a useful 1.75" 440C stainless steel drop-point blade. Its shape and long ergonomic handle makes it great for cutting open letters and boxes. And unlike most penknives, the blade has a liner lock that keeps it safe and in place during more strenuous work. While you won't be able to write with it, it does include a tablet stylus protected by a screw cap.

If you haven't felt comfortable with your office EDC options, try out the Office Survival. It's a great way to carry a capable knife where you need it without raising too many eyebrows. Pick one up for yourself at the link below.

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