A knife is a valuable tool in any number of situations, whether it be self-defense or just a hard to open box.
But carrying around a huge dagger all the time probably isn’t a great plan if you don’t want to have to constantly explain yourself to everyone around.
For this exact reason, a variety of products dubbed “everyday carry” were created.
This title is applied to just about anything that’s small and discreet enough to carry with you every day without much of a fuss.
The danger, of course, is that a lot of these products could potentially be faulty, cheaply made, or just not that good as they seek to minimize themselves into uselessness.
That can make picking something without much knowledge going in a real minefield, but what can you do?
Read this list, that’s what.
Let’s count down the top 15 best EDC knives you can own that you can carry around on yourself without an issue.
1. SOG Spec Arc Folding Knife
The SOG Spec Arc folding knife is a major step up from the rusty pocket knife you used to have in your youth.
Its straight four-inch blade is made from real VG-10 stainless steel and set in place with an Arc-Lock to keep it extended and ready for action without risk of closing up on your hand.
Its glass and steel-reinforced nylon handle (plus the rest of it) is tested to withstand up to a 1,000 lbs of pressure, meaning you’re more likely to break before your knife does.
Add that to the convenient belt clip and the fact it weighs in at only 4.4 ounces and you’ve got a reliable blade that you can keep on you without any problems.
2. Zero Tolerance 0095BW Titanium Folding Knife
While function always takes priority, good form is still important. The Zero Tolerance 0095BW folding knife has both of these things in spades, its rugged gray stonewashed exterior making it a joy to look at as well as use.
The 0095’s harpoon-style blade is made from S35VN steel that keeps an extremely sharp edge, able to slice deeply through just about anything as easily as butter.
Its handle, on the other hand, is crafted from solid titanium, making it one of the most durable knives you could ever find.
It’s easy to use, too, a ball-bearing-based deployment system making for smooth movement in and out of the handle for quick use.
3. Gerber Decree Tactical Folding Knife
Gerber’s Decree knife is a solid piece of equipment sure to satisfy even the most discerning knife fans. Its tanto-style 3.7 inch S30V steel blade keeps a strong edge and has the added bonus of serration near the base plus a black ceramic coating to help prevent rust and scratching.
Beyond that, though, you have the handle, which is almost like another tool all on its own.
In addition to its diamond-textured rubber over-molded glass-filled nylon grip, the bottom of the handle features a glass-breaking point for bashing out car windows or striking at things in emergency situations.
It also deploys the blade with a finger-flip tab, giving you that special satisfying feeling whenever you use it.
4. Spyderco Assist Black Blade Knife
Though far from traditional, the Spyderco Assist Black Blade Knife is a seriously tough contender with an interesting to look at design.
Featuring a thick, blunt-tipped blade made from VG-10 steel, almost the entire length is serrated specifically for sawing through thick materials like seatbelts or duct tape in emergency situations.
The blade is only half the fun, though, as the handle has its own set of tools built right in.
Beyond just its textured exterior for a better grip, it also has a retractable glass breaker in the end as well as a survival whistle.
Not only that, the handle is designed to work in tandem with the blade itself, letting you place a tough material in between the two and squeezing them together for an instant cut.
This lets you put the full force of your grip strength to work, even letting you clip through material as strong as rope without issue.
5. CRKT x Ruger 2-Stage Folding Knife
In a collaboration between CRKT and gunmaker Ruger, the result was this 2-stage folding knife.
As one would expect from such a union, those results are pretty extraordinary, with a weapon great for all different kinds of environments and situations you might find yourself in.
This knife’s four-inch tanto-style 8Cr13MoV hardness 58-59 HRC steel blade packs a punch with both its sharpness and the serration near the base, slicing and sawing as needed to tear apart whatever’s in front of you.
Its aluminum-steel handle comes with a flipper mechanism for easy opening and a point at the bottom that can act as both a glass breaking tip while also providing a hole to keep it on a lanyard if the four position clip isn’t your style.
6. Opinel No. 08 Knife
Maybe you’re not too into the more modern look of a lot of the EDC knives on this list and would prefer something a bit more classical.
If that’s the case, you might really like the Opinel No. 08, a contemporary take on the traditional pocket knife using better quality materials in a more aesthetically pleasing way than anything you likely owned as a kid back in the day.
The “No. 08” portion of this knife indicates its blade size (3.35 inches), with variations both larger and smaller depending on your preference.
Regardless of size, though, all of them have a super sharp carbon steel blade matched with a sustainably sourced beechwood handle, plus a steel safety ring to keep the blade from accidentally closing on No. 06 and larger knives.
Looking and feeling like a traditional pocket knife with a bit more flair and class, it’s a great way to get back into the groove of everyday carry.
7. Boker Plus Subcom F Knife
Boker’s large line of EDC products has given us many gems over the year, the Subcom F being one of their more unusual and useful entries.
Its small, lightweight, and even somewhat strangely chunky design might not seem that good at first, but the convenience and utility makes itself clear the moment you really start to use it.
The AUS-8 stainless steel blade holds a great edge and is serrated near the base, giving you a ton of cutting power packed into a small space.
The fiberglass-coated nylon handle fits surprisingly well in your hand with a finger groove that helps it sit naturally against your palm.
It can also be concealed quite easily in plain sight thanks to its attached belt clip, looking like little more than a gray/black square instead of a knife.
8. Spyderco Dragonfly 2 Knife
While Spyderco’s original Dragonfly knife was a work of art, the Dragonfly 2 is an improvement in almost every way.
The large leaf-shaped VG-10 stainless steel blade stays sharp even after tons of use and is easy to open thanks to the signature Spyderco hole on its back.
The natural curve of the handle also feels good in your hand, the bi-directional texture pattern helping you keep a secure grip even in emergencies.
Most notable of all is the range of colors the Dragonfly 2 is available in.
While the more traditional black is available, you’re finally able to customize your EDC knife beyond it, with shades of blue, green, orange, and plenty more out there for you to enjoy.
9. CRKT Pilar Knife
According to designer Jesper Voxnaes, the CRKT Pilar is named and designed based on the sensibilities of Ernest Hemingway’s sailboat of the same name. And, just like a good ship, this knife will provide for you for years to come without cause for complaint.
With an 8Cr13MoV stainless steel sheepsfoot blade, you won’t have any trouble cutting or chopping through anything you might run into on a day to day basis.
The handle is made from the same material to give the entire knife a consistent look, the finger choil, and ergonomic design making what would otherwise be a slippery grip into the perfect fit in your hand.
10. Benchmade BKC Bedlam Axis Folding Knife
Benchmade’s BKC Bedlam Axis folding knife is one mean piece of equipment, sporting a scimitar-style blade made from 154CM stainless steel with a black ceramic coating, making it both super sharp, extra strong, and resistant to rust, scratches, dirt, and anything else that might get splashed on it.
Near the base is a serrated section, too, for sawing through the toughest materials without any resistance.
The handle of this knife is made from G-10 material, already improving its durability to a ludicrous degree.
Not only that, it’s designed with a scale-like texturing for a secure grip in any type of environment.
It also has the distinction of being easy to open or close with a single hand, improving its utility intense situations where you can’t lose the use of both of your hands for even a few seconds.
11. Buck Knives Vantage Pro Knife
Buck Knives has a storied career in the world of making knives, so it’s no wonder their entry on this list is something else.
As one of the originators of the folding hunting knife, the Vantage Pro takes the traditional look and feel of a pocket knife and brings things to the next level with a super sharp 3 and a quarter inch S30V steel blade that retains an edge like no other while managing to be corrosion and damage resistant.
The handle is a combination of injected-molded nylon with G-10 contouring, all with an attractive woodgrain-like design.
Texturing along both sides of the handle helps you keep a firm grip that won’t slip, almost as firm as the blade lock once the knife is deployed.
Finally, there’s also a reversible pocket clip, but it can be safely removed without damaging it or the handle if you’d rather carry your knife in some other way.
12. Kershaw Injection Knife
The Kershaw Injection knife is a 3 and a half inch 8Cr13MoV drop point steel blade that, just like its name would imply, has the precision of a syringe necessary to take care of any task you might need it for.
Both its look and how it operates are top tier, worthy of being in anyone’s EDC knife collection.
Not only is the Injection’s blade extremely sharp, but it’s also extremely easy to sharpen, though you won’t need to do that very often given how well it keeps an edge even under heavy use.
That’s only half the picture, though, as the G-10 handle provides excellent support and grip with its scaled texture, ensuring you won’t lose a hold on your weapon in stressful situations.
The blade also a pair of thumb studs on either side of the back for easy opening just to give it that extra bit of convenience.
13. Benchmade 940 Osborne Knife
Benchmade’s 940 Osborne is an unexpectedly hearty tool for EDC, being almost half the weight of most of the other blades on this list without compromising its integrity or power.
This, combined with the rather robust number of handles and even blade colors that you can purchase this knife in, make it worthy of notice right from the start.
More substantively, the 940 Osborne has a CPM-S30V steel blade made in a reverse tanto shape, giving it both a unique look and superior cutting power.
While the handle is aluminum, it’s more than strong enough to stand up to the rigors of everyday life thanks to its extreme hardness.
Easy to deploy thanks to the pair of thumb studs at the back of the blade, it also comes with the AXIS lock feature to protect your fingers from accidental closures.
14. SOG Trident Elite Knife
Anything going by the name of “Trident Elite” had better live up to the hype. Luckily, this knife certainly does, being an extremely effective tool and looking good while doing it for no extra charge.
The Trident Elite has a black or polished 3.7-inch AUS-8 stainless steel blade, easily usable thanks to the assisted opening mechanic built into the handle that takes most of the work out of getting the blade to deploy.
Even when the blade isn’t out, though, you can still chop through tough lines thanks to the handle’s built-in cord-cutter near the back, letting you slip whatever needs severing into the groove without risk of injury thanks to how deep it is.
Beyond that, the handle itself is just a useful piece of equipment all its own with its integrated glass breaking tip on the bottom and rubber inserts over the fiberglass-filled nylon, giving you a superior grip whether you’re wielding your knife or smashing through windows.
15. Boker Kwaiken Knife
The Boker Kwaiken knife is a gorgeous weapon with almost infinite utility, passing the test with flying colors in both form and function.
If the survivalist aesthetic many EDC tools have isn’t really for you or clashes with your general look, this might just be the knife you’ve been waiting for thanks to its unique blend of usability and class.
The Kwaiken’s 3 and a half inch VG-10 drop point steel blade is simple to deploy, needing only a single finger to change it from a single rectangle into a dangerous weapon.
It can even be closed almost as easily, needing only one hand to do the deed.
The handle, though, is unique all its own, using a mixture of copper and carbon fiber to create a scale texture for better grip, resulting in unique patterning along the sides of the tool.
If you’re in the market for a new knife to handle all your EDC needs than any one of the 15 presented on this list would make a great choice to add to your daily arsenal.
Strong, reliable, and convenient, all of them will stand up to any test you put them through and come out ready for more.