Quality. It’s a word that is overused nowadays. Companies are hocking stuff that breaks in a couple months but are somehow allowed to call their stuff quality. It’s infuriating. That’s why we put together this list of items that are truly worthy of being called quality. These are durable, well-made, built-to-last products that are consider buy it for life (BIFL). We go through each important category and give our number one pick for each, taking into account the build-quality, warranty and general reviews of the product by people that own it and can vouch for it’s general awesomeness. Disagree? Well, what can I say, you’re wrong… I mean… Let us know in the comments. Keep in mind that this post is always a work in progress and we will be updating and editing as we go. What is best today may not be the best tomorrow. Scroll down past the table of contents to get to the good stuff!
Best men’s all-purpose boots | _bc35ae98_
These boots get our top recommendation for overall best men’s boots. With amazing craftsmanship and a look that is incredibly versatile, you’ll wonder why it took you so long to buy a pair of Red Wing boots.
Why we love them: A trusted company name, amazing looks and solid construction.back to menu ↑
Best men’s dress boots | _37a5906b_
The Americana is borderline unfair when compared to other brands. White’s Boots doesn’t cut any corner in the quality of these boots. And they look like a million bucks.
Why we love them: Totally re-buildable design, amazing looks and durabilityback to menu ↑
Best outdoor hiking boots | _55cd1e3b_
Forget those other companies offering terrible glue-on soles. Danner brings in the big guns with these outdoor hiking boots.
Why we love them: Waterproof, full welted sole construction and they won’t break the bankback to menu ↑
Best socks | _443d0afd_
Who knew that a company can actually offer a full lifetime warranty on socks? Well, Darn Tough believes in their product so much that they will give you a new pair if you wear them out. Amazing.
Why we love them: Comfortable, and an amazing lifetime warranty… on socks…
Clothingback to menu ↑
Best pair of jeans | _c82c3b01_
You may think that Levi’s are just run of the mill, but the Levi 511 are some of the best jeans you can buy. Not only that but, they are much more comfortable than many “raw denim” brands out there.
Why we love them: Stylish modern design that doesn’t make you look like a dad. And they’re durable!back to menu ↑
Best work pants | _6683ffcf_
Carhartt is the undisputed kind of work clothing. These are the choice pant for roofers, which should tell you something about the quality of these Carhartt carpenter pants.
Why we love them: Incredibly durable and affordable.back to menu ↑
Best active pants | _6c071cb5_
Best known for their kick-ass yoga gear, Prana is our top pick for active pants. The Prana Stretch Zion is perfect for camping, hiking, playing video games… Pretty much anything.
Why we love them: Super comfortable and versatile.back to menu ↑
Best t-shirt | _de82335e_
Merino wool is absolutely the best material for t-shirts and Ice Breaker makes the best, most durable garment out of this light-weight and breathable material.
Why we love it: Comfortable, fast-drying, just plain awesome.back to menu ↑
Best hooded sweatshirt | _73e412b7_
Why we love it: Stylish, comfortable and a great warrantyback to menu ↑
Best work jacket | _e06d0a87_
This jacket is what you’re going to want if you work outside or put your jackets through hell. This sucker is designed with construction crews in mind.
Why we love it: Your could run a steam roller over this and it would still be fine.back to menu ↑
Best winter parka | _02799bc1_
Sure, these are really popular. But they are actually legitimately buy it for life BIFL material. Not to mention that you could stay warm stranded on an island in the arctic is this parka.
Why we love it: Amazing attention to detail, very stylish.back to menu ↑
Best rain jacket |_839d566c_
If you need a great lightweight rain jacket this one from Arcteryx is consistently rated above pretty much anything else out there. It breathes and is light enough to take anywhere.
Why we love it: Breathable, super light and incredibly durable
Bagsback to menu ↑
Best all purpose backpack | _064b09b7_
This bag is a beast. Not only is it really well designed, but it is covered by Osprey’s amazing warranty. If you have to pick one bag from our list to buy, this is it.
Why we love it: Great craftsmanship, even better warranty.back to menu ↑
Best budget backpack | _6b54b37a_
Who said a quality bag needs to cost and arm and a leg? Jansport bags have been know to last students for their whole school career. And they are cheap enough that they won’t break into that beer money.
Why we love it: Inexpensive and high qualityback to menu ↑
Best commuter backpack | _1e641b62_
Need a backpack that will work just as well on the bus as on the trail? The North Face Borealis is what you’re looking for.
Why we love it: Subdued looks, really well-designed pocketsback to menu ↑
Best hiking backpack | _02eb8032_
This is a great backpack for a day trip or even a weekend. Not too big, not too small, but still featuring Osprey’s legendary warranty.
Why we love it: Fantastic warranty, versatile design for small trips.back to menu ↑
Best messenger bag | _f5d6c520_
You can’t really walk into a big business meeting with a backpack. For those instances we recommend this messenger bag from Timbuk2.
Why we love it: Super durable, subdued looks that work well in an office environment.back to menu ↑
Best duffle bag | _ea00299e_
The Osprey Transporter has been a favorite in the buy it for life BIFL community for many years. This transformable duffle features Osprey’s lifetime warranty and a design that is perfect for a weekend getaway.
Why we love it: Lifetime warranty, really well laid out design, several sizes to pick from.back to menu ↑
Best luggage | _c467db1e_
Forget Samsonite. Forget many so called durable luggage is… not. Briggs and Riley has gotten a great reputation from years of supplying ridiculously durable and well-designed luggage. And the Torque line is the best of the best.
Why we love it: If your luggage fell out of the plane, it might survive in these super-durable bags.back to menu ↑
Best women’s handbag | _fe5abb99_
Coach handbags are still the best quality women’s purses and handbags available. And you can’t go wrong with this beautiful Coach Peyton Signature tote. Just make sure it’s the real deal by checking the individual serial number on the inside!
Why we love it: Still the king of bags, unrivaled quality.back to menu ↑
Best briefcase | _3ef4484b_
If you’re into leather, you can’t ignore Saddleback. Proudly offering a 100 year warranty (that’s right 100 years) this briefcase will truly be fought over by your grandchildren when you’re six feet under.
Why we love it: Premium leather construction, 100 year warranty.
Accessoriesback to menu ↑
Best sunglasses | Randolph Engineering Aviators
Remember Don Draper from Mad Men? Remember the badass suglasses he was sporting? Well, these are those. These Randolph Engineering Aviators are also the sunglasses given to every NASA pilot. Premium quality at it’s finest.
Why we love it: Amazing quality and unsurpassed style.back to menu ↑
Best men’s watch | _d73bbb43_
Why we love it: Best in class durability and slick looks.back to menu ↑
Best umbrella | Senz umbrella
Just try to make this umbrella turn inside out. This is about as durable as umbrellas get.
Why we love it: Durable construction, won’t turn inside out in the wind.
Toolsback to menu ↑
Best multi-tool | _3ec704fa_
If you talk to anyone that knows what they are talking about in terms of tools, they will know that the best all-around multi-tool out there is the Leatherman Wave. Great warranty and unsurpassed craftsmanship make this our number one pick.
Why we love it: Leatherman quality, best mix of tools.back to menu ↑
Best pen | _225e4cfa_
Parker is one of the big pen manufacturers and also a favorite among pen collectors. But even their new stuff is incredible quality. The Parker Jotter series continues their supreme quality.
Why we love it: Awesome release mechanism, great writing experience.back to menu ↑
Best flashlight | _6dfa8d81_
Fenix makes some of the best flashlights available. Military grade aluminum and enough lumens to temporarily blind someone, what else do you want? Seriously though, millions of flashlight addicts can’t be wrong. The Fenix PD35 has the best features for the best price.back to menu ↑
Best hammer | _03a1e1c3_
Estwing is the top name in hammers. Most roofers and a lot of other construction workers swear by them. And this is their overall best performer for the price.
Why we love it: Great overall quality and best reviewed hammer around.back to menu ↑
Best lighter | _6c44ac18_
Sometimes simple is better. And that is certainly the case with a good old Zippo lighter. Wind resistant and super reliable, these are still some of the best lighters you will find.
Why we love it: Great overall quality and best reviewed hammer around.back to menu ↑
Best pocket knife | _9fef84c2_
Spyderco’s distinctive design has captivated knife experts for decades. And their best overall knife is the Spyderco Delica 4, a mix of stellar design and manageable size.
Why we love it: Amazing steel, great design and not too intimidating.back to menu ↑
Best cordless drill | _93ff523a_
There are a lot of choices when it comes to drills, but this cordless drill from Dewalt hits all of the sweet spots. A great compact brushless design has set it above everything else out there.
Why we love it: Great power, brushless motor design that puts more power to the drill head.
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Best nail clippers | _3cfefb69_
It’s hard to excited about a pair of tweezers but if you’re going to, it’s these ones. Tweezerman have made a pair that stays sharp way longer than any others.
Why we love it: Stays sharp for a long time.back to menu ↑
Best axe | _64a3a6ac_
Estwing kills it with the full tang design of this sportsman axe. Amazing reviews and a great reputation make this our top axe pick.
Why we love it: Full tang design, great company reputation.
Coming soon… In the meantime check out our section on kitchen stuff here.