Depending on whom you ask, an everyday emergency could range from the mundane, such as dropping a set of keys into the dark abyss under your car, or something more sinister, like your coworker’s post-meatball-hero garlic breath. You need a flashlight and he needs breath mints—stat! Good thing you have both at the ready. The implements you carry on you every day should keep you prepared for most situations you may encounter, and sometimes even the ones you don’t expect.
- RELATED STORY: Mike Lamb Names His 11 Essential Everyday Carry Items
Which particular tools you choose to keep in your EDC setup will differ from most other people’s, because everyone’s needs, experiences and exposures to potential threats are different. Take for instance this issue’s featured EDC of Rachel Vandevoort, trade relations manager at Kimber. She carries a flashlight and mints, too. But what’s that? She carries bear spray? We don’t know about you, but we’re intrigued. Here’s Rachel’s EDC in her own words.
Flashlights and headlamps have always been an important tool for outdoor recreation, but they’re even more important when traveling in urban environments where a power failure can be a far more dangerous proposition. Petzl offers the best headlamp selection, and I usually have a few handheld flashlights hanging around. I am rarely with less than three to five flashlights at all times.
While a knife is certainly a great tool in a defensive situation, especially when a gun is not an option, mine is more readily used to open things, dig slivers out of my kid’s hands or to dress some sort of game animal. I am spoiled to be able to carry beautiful knives made by my father, who is a custom knife maker, but I also often carry a folding knife when traveling.
You can never have too many fly rods or guns. I also have the knack for rationalizing the purchase of high-quality fly rods and firearms to spouses that may not be into fishing or shooting but have their own taste for shoes, handbags or golf clubs. That being said, my current favorite is my Kimber Micro .380 ACP. It feels, handles and points like a 1911 and is a pleasure to shoot. It is so light and small I hardly know it’s on me or in a pocket.
Flashbang Holsters has changed the playing field for women who want to concealed carry; I have used its holsters for years and love the versatility they offer me. Which model holster I choose largely depends on what I am wearing and what I have planned for the day.
Magazines & Ammo
The right choice in ammunition can enhance the performance and effectiveness of most modern firearms. I like to keep at least two extra loaded magazines with me, and I keep an extra box of ammo in my vehicle.
Wallet + I.D.
I love leather. In Montana, T Bird Leather spoils us for all of our toting needs. Aside from always carrying credit cards, identification, CCW and business cards, I am trying to make a better habit of keeping cash with me at all times, since occasionally credit cards and technology just don’t work.
Smartphone, Ear Buds & Power Cords
Our smartphones have become quite the tool in life; however, nothing makes me happier than being in a place where they don’t work. Cords and straps drive me nuts, but at least Saddleback Leather gives me a way to organize the accessories and my phone.
Lighter & Hairpins
I don’t carry a lighter because I smoke; I carry one because I never know when I will want or need to build a fire. I would like to say I carry hairpins because I never know when I will need to use one to pick a lock, but really I just have crazy hair and I need to tame the mane often.
Sunglasses & Lip Balm
Protection from the sun is very important. Everyone should make a better effort to make use of SPF products like lip balm in their daily lives. It’s just a smarter way to live.
- RELATED STORY: 27 Everyday Carry Items in 2 Different Setups
There are times that I cannot or choose not to carry a firearm for protection. This is when I carry a PepperBlaster. I prefer this pepper product to others because it is not a spray, nor does it contain liquid under pressure. It actually has a pyrotechnic delivery system that fires viscous OC liquid much like a gun fires a bullet. Because it is not under pressure, it is not affected by heat or cold and can be left in a car without fear of explosion.
Counter Assault Bear Spray
In my neck of the woods, the threat of a bear attack is often a much more present and eminent threat to my safety than that of a human. I prefer bear spray as a first defense and a large-caliber firearm as a backup.
- Ray-Ban: Shooter Sunglasses; $150; ray-ban.com
- Zebralight: SC52 L2 AA; $59.99; zebralight.com
- Brixton: Crass Wallet; $59.99; brixton.com
- Casio: Men’s Slim Solar Watch; $49.95; casio.com
- CASEFORMERS: Ultra Slim Armor Case; $19.99; handhelditems.com
- Sig Sauer: P238 Two Tone; $741; sigsauer.com
- dci: Travel Tools Keychain; $7; dcigift.com
- Atlanta Cutlery: Self Defence Money Clip; $9.95; atlantacutlery.com
- Boker Plus: Kwaiken Flipper Folder; $215; bokerusa.com
- Bico Australia: Titanium Bottle Opener; $39; bicoraw.com
- Kingston Technology: DataTraveler Micro 3.1; $39; kingston.com
- EagleCell: Galaxy S6 Robust Armor; $29.95; hdaccessory.com
- Gerber: Impromptu Tactical Pen; $72; gerbergear.com
- Travelon: SafeID Daisy Ladies Wallet; $20; travelonbags.com
- Casio: Baby-G – Analog-Digital; $120; baby-g.com
- OLIGHT: I3S EOS Flashlight; $19.95; olightworld.com
- SABRE: Personal Alarm Key Ring; $9.99; sabrered.com
- Prudence: Cartoon Cat Self Defence; $19.98; amazon.com
- Roma Leathers; Concealment Purse 7086; $74.95; nevadagunleather.com
- Burberry: Trench Collection; $240; us.burberry.com
- SCCY: CPX-1 CBSB 9mm; $334; sccy.com