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October 26, 2020 4 min read

Looking for a new wallet? One of the biggest decisions you’ll need to make is the type of material your wallet is made of. 

Two of the most common wallet materials are metal and leather. These styles are very different - and they each have their own pros and cons. There are several factors you’ll need to consider when choosing the right wallet for you. 

Let’s take a look into the different advantages and disadvantages of metal wallets and leather wallets, so you can reflect on which option is best for your needs. 

Metal Wallets

Metal wallets are quite a new trend. The advanced technology developed in recent years that allows us to create lightweight, durable and strong metal has made this style of wallet even more practical and advantageous. 

Today’s modern metal wallets are made from beautiful materials, such as aluminum and titanium. They are usually made as a single frame, with a set of plates for you to put your cards between. Along with the metal body, there is usually an elastic band, a clip or a ring to hold everything together. There are many different styles of metal wallet to choose from - all in different sizes, colors and patterns. 

Pros 

  • One of the biggest advantages of a metal wallet is that it is very tough and durable. It is resistant to shocks, drops and impacts and will also be waterproof. 
  • A metal wallet is easy to clean. You can simply wipe if off if you spill something on it, or if it gets dirty. 
  • A typical metal wallet has only a few credit card slots and perhaps a spot for cash. This means that if you want to carry only the minimum basics around with you, the wallet will be slim and lightweight. You’ll be forced to get rid of the excess things in your pockets - which can be a good thing. (Especially since bulky wallets can cause lower back pain!)
  • The surface of the wallet is smooth, which makes it easy to slip in and out of your pockets. 
  • Some metal wallets also come with practical tools like bottle openers or multi-tools, which can make them even more useful and practical. 
  • Metal wallets offer structure and rigidity, which protects any documents inside and ensures that are not bent or creased. 

Cons

  • When you carry a metal wallet and travel by plane, you run the risk of your wallet setting off the security detectors and being examined by TSA agents. Even if the wallet is designed to TSA standards, the officer might still decide to confiscate it. 
  • If you need to carry around more cards, cash, documents, keys, etc. you won’t have enough room with a metal wallet. 
  • Depending on the fabric of the pants you wear, you might find that the edges of the metal damages the fabric. 
  • Wallets from really high quality metal can be expensive. If you are looking for custom engravings or designs, this can add even more onto the price. A good metal wallet won’t necessarily be the cheapest option. 
  • Metal conducts heat, so if you leave your metal wallet in the sun or in a hot car, it might become hot to the touch. 

Leather Wallets

Leather is one of the most common and traditional metals for a wallet. Leather wallets have been around for generations and there are many styles - whether you are looking for something more traditional and masculine, or something bright, playful and colorful. 

There are many different types of leather wallet you can choose from - whether it’s cowhide, horse leather or full grain cow leather. 

Some leathers are designed to be smooth, buttery and supple while others have a rougher texture or pattern. Leather can be natural in color - or it can be dyed a range of different colors. You can also find leather wallets with patterns printed or etched into them. 

Here are some of the pros and cons associated with choosing a leather wallet:

Pros 

  • Leather material is soft to the touch and feels smooth and luxurious 
  • Leather is the type of material that looks better over time. As you use the wallet, it will obtain marks and a unique texture that will add to the appearance. 
  • The wallet will be flexible and easy to carry. You can slip it in and out of your pockets smoothly. 
  • A leather wallet won’t cause any issues going through airport security. 
  • A stylish and high quality leather wallet goes with any outfit, whether it’s a t-shirt and jeans or a suit. You can wear it in a number of different settings.

Cons 

  • Leather may be durable and tough, but it is not water resistant. You will need to keep your wallet out of the rain or it will be damaged. 
  • Leather is not the thinnest material. A leather wallet can be somewhat bulky, especially when it is filled with cash and credit cards. 
  • The credit cards slots in a new leather wallet can be stiff. They will stretch over time, but it takes a while. 
  • You will need to care for your leather wallet to make it last and keep it looking nice. For example, many types of leather require you to wash and condition them with special products. 
  • While cheap leather wallets are more affordable, if you want a high quality leather wallet you’ll need to invest a bit of money. 

Which Wallet is Right For You?

These are just a few of the pros and cons associated with carrying either a leather or a metal wallet. When it comes to choosing the best one for you - it’s important to remember that there is no such thing as the “perfect” wallet. It’s such a personal choice, and everyone uses their wallet differently. 

The key is to think about what’s most important for you in a wallet - and what your own personal style is. The right wallet will not only be practical - it will match your personal style and you’ll feel chic and confident whenever you use it.


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