Wallets might just be the most widely-carried EDC items in the world. We all carry one. But how happy are you with yours, really?
Axwell is a company that has set out to re-invent the everyday carry wallet, and I for one am all for it. The wallet has been ripe for reinvention for quite some time.
I spent years carrying around a bulky bifold before eventually abandoning it in favor of a slimmer front pocket leather wallet. I liked it, but it never seemed to hold as much stuff as I needed it to. Enter: the Axwell Wallet.
While I can honestly say that there have been pros and cons to every wallet I’ve ever carried—well, most of them—I’m also quite confident, after carrying an Axwell Wallet for many months, that I’m ready to say goodbye forever to having a pocket full of leather.
But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Let’s take a closer look at what makes Axwell Wallets unique.
Measurements & Specs
Axwell Wallets measure 86 x 54 x 8 mm (approximately 3.4 x 2.1 x 0.3 inches), which makes them smaller than just about any traditional wallet you might find on the market. They’re designed to hold 1-12 cards, and are RFID-blocking to keep your cards safe from electronic theft.
Each wallet comes with an interchangeable cash strap and money clip (more on those in just a bit) and the two sides of the wallet are held together using a combination of magnetic closure and an elastic track. The cover plates, which are fully removable and replaceable, are also held in place magnetically.
The cover plates are available in aerospace-grade aluminum, copper or carbon fiber. The weight of the wallet depends on which material you choose (aluminum is 2.60 oz, copper is 5.35 oz, carbon fiber is 2.25 oz).
With multiple cover plate materials (and multiple color/print options) one can easily swap plates back and forth and customize their wallet with the appearance they prefer. The plates are easy to remove, and snap firmly back into place with a satisfying magnetic ‘click.’
You can also decide whether the cash strap or money clip suits you best. Axwell Wallets come with the cash strap in place, but all you have to do is remove the cover plate it’s attached to, and switch it out for the money clip if you prefer. Personally, I’ve found that the money clip works better for me, and I love having the option.
Design & Performance
Compared to other minimalist wallets, the magnetic closure of the Axwell Wallet is one of the features that really makes it stand out. You’ll notice right away that the wallet has no screws or fasteners of any kind; it’s entirely magnetic. It’s a cool concept that holds cards effectively and also gives the wallet a sleek look.
These wallets are also quite durable. I’ve dropped my wallet a few times—sometimes deliberately for testing purposes, sometimes unintentionally because I lack basic coordination—and it hasn’t been damaged in the least.
The worst thing that can happen is that the covers will pop off upon impact, but they easily snap back into place. As with any metal wallet, you can expect to see some scuffs and wear over time. Even with that in mind, I’ve carried the aluminum version of the Axwell Wallet the most, and I’ve been surprised at how well it resists dings and dents.
Perhaps most importantly, the wallet holds its contents securely. The magnetism is just enough to keep cards nice and snug without making them hard to get in and out.
Theft of personal data via radio frequency identification (RFID) has become a hot topic in recent years, to the point that “RFID blocking technology” and “card skimming” have become oft-repeated buzzwords in the wallet world. How important is this, really? It’s hard to say.
As far as I know, nobody has ever tried to steal my identity by scanning my credit cards through my wallet. Still, that doesn’t mean it can’t or doesn’t happen. Regardless of whether you consider RFID blocking to be of great importance, it’s nice to know that Axwell wallets have it. At best, it keeps your credit cards safe. At worst, it’s just not something you have to think about.
Comfort & Usability
I find the Axwell Wallet to be an easy and comfortable carry. It’s almost exactly the same dimensions as the credit cards it’s intended to hold, so it’s easy to slip in and out of any pocket with ease.
The Axwell Wallet is a little bit thicker than some other minimalist wallets, but I haven’t found that to be a major issue. Ultimately, the true thickness of the wallet depends on how much you choose to carry in it. On a day-to-day basis, I carry 8 or 9 cards, which is toward the upper end of what these wallets are intended for, and I still find it comfortable and easy to use.
Moving cards in and out of the wallet is easy too, though it gets slightly more cumbersome the more cards you have. The two halves of the wallet conveniently separate to make fanning out the cards quite simple. I keep the cards I use the most closest to the front, which helps.
One minor criticism that I’ve heard about these wallets is that they’re heavy. Fair enough; they’re quite a bit heavier than leather, and a little bit chunkier than the Ridge Wallets that Axwells are often compared to.
Personally, I find the copper Axwell Wallet to be a little heavier than I like, but it looks so cool as it gets a little patina on it. The aluminum and carbon fiber versions never feel too heavy in my pocket. I carry it either in the hip pocket of my jeans, or in a jacket pocket, and never notice any discomfort or excess weight. I will advise that you not carry it in the same pocket with your phone, as they can kind of clang around together.
Final Thoughts on the Axwell Wallet
When it comes down to it, whether or not the Axwell Wallet is for you depends entirely on your needs. I’d recommend it to anyone who is looking for a trim wallet with a sleek, minimalist look that holds a few cards effectively and doesn’t take up too much space in one’s pocket.
The ability to customize is also a nice feature. Swap cover plates if you like, and choose between a cash strap or money clip (or neither! That’s also an option).
One thing I haven’t mentioned yet is that Axwell also makes some cool accessories that match their wallets. You can get a card-sized multi tool, and a coin tray that fits between the two halves of the wallet to hold coins and keys. Replacement money clips, cash straps and elastic tracks are also available separately.
Having carried an Axwell Wallet for months, I don’t see going back to cowhide any time soon. It just works for me, and it’s a conversation starter for sure. I couldn’t count the time’s I’ve been asked about it by friends, family members, cashiers and baristas.
Price-wise, the Axwell will cost you a bit more than most traditional leather wallets. But it can last decades—Axell offers a lifetime warranty—and is competitively priced compared to similar minimalist wallets like Ridge Wallets.
Blair Witkowski is an avid watch nut, loves pocket knives and flashlights and when he is not trying to be a good dad to his nine kids, you will find him running or posting pics on Instagram. Besides writing articles for Tech Writer EDC he is also the founder of Lowcountry Style & Living. In addition to writing, he is focused on improving his clients websites for his other passion, Search Engine Optimization. His wife Jennifer and he live in coastal South Carolina.