The price for everything you need in life is $1979.83

I have updated my men’s packing list with individual products. (Disclosure: This list includes a few Amazon Associate links. I will get a commission if you click through the links to buy the products.)

As posted previously on this blog and on Reddit, this list is derived from packing lists from r/onebag, which is a subreddit for people who like to travel light. I’ve been reviewing the packing lists posted there since the beginning of 2020, making spreadsheets of what everyone packed and writing up what I found (January, February, March).

I’m now finished through March and have updated the men’s list here on my blog to cover not just the categories that people bring, not just how many of each item, but also the preferred brand and product in each category. 

At this point, my list reflects 63 men’s packing lists from r/onebag. You might think that this gives me pretty strong conclusions on brands but in reality it’s still patchy in places. For one thing, a lot of people don’t post the brands – a packing list often just says “3 tee shirts”. As a result, the leading brand is unclear in some categories, like shorts and toothpaste. Where it’s unclear, I’ve chosen a product from among the leading contenders anyways based on which product I myself would buy.

At the very bottom of this post, I set out how many of the 63 people brought a given item and how many chose the brand I chose, so that you can get a sense of my confidence level.

The products

Here are my notes on each product I’ve included in the list:

Osprey Farpoint Backpack 40L – $160

Osprey was the preferred brand with 9 redditors over the next nearest competitor, Tortuga, with 5. As for specific backpacks, the Osprey Farpoint was also the top pick with 5 over Peak Design’s Travel Backpack at 3. 

So Osprey doesn’t have a huge lead over other backpacks but it’s enough that it’s a pretty uncomplicated decision. 

There are different sizes of Farpoint but 40 liter seems to be about the average for Farpoint specifically and for r/onebag generally. 

Osprey stuff pack – $35

I think that Osprey is the choice for day bag too. Four people on r/onebag went with Osprey over 3 for Aer and 3 for Matador. Only two of those four people specified that they used this particular Osprey bag – the stuff pack – and I could conceivably see some people choosing a different Osprey item here. But this stuff pack is pretty much what I have in mind when I think of a day bag and I don’t think I avoid these selection problems if I go with Aer or Matador. So the Osprey stuff pack it is for the time being.

Two Eagle Creek packing cubes – $29.55

More people (11) used Eagle Creek than Peak Design (10) and so I’ve gone with Eagle Creek Compression packing cubes.

I think I could have fairly chosen Peak Design here because the Eagle Creek votes are split between the compression cubes and the original cubes, and then, for Eagle Creek, there are a handful of color and size choices. Peak Design only has one packing cube product, in one color and two sizes. Eagle Creek also sells their packing cubes in sets, which leads to still more choices.  

Still, the idea here is to choose the most popular product and I think that’s Eagle Creek here. The Eagle Creek packing cubes are also less expensive than Peak Design and packing cubes always seem a little overpriced to me anyways. 

Arc’teryx Atom LT jacket – $239

The jacket I’ve chosen is the Arc’teryx Atom LT. Arc’teryx, worn by 12 redditors, was the most popular brand, ahead of Patagonia with 8 redditors.  However, when you get down to the level of specific jackets it’s a tie at four between the Atom LT and Patagonia’s Nano Puff. I went with Arc’teryx because Arc’teryx got more votes at the brand level. Moreover, 4 people didn’t specify which Arc’teryx jacket they wore and presumably some of them took the Atom LT.  

The main difficulty at the feature-level is a hood or no hood. I personally don’t like hoods and so have gone no-hood in my link. 

“LT” means light.  There is also an Atom “AR” which means “all-round” but all the people on Reddit who specified said that they brought the LT.  

I’m also tracking the number of items that people on Reddit bring: how many tee shirts, how many socks. To measure this, I use the mode of people who pack that item. For a while, the mode of jackets was two: that is, (presumably) a shell and a liner. The mode has moved back to one through March, so it’s just the Arc’teryx Atom LT. 

Adidas NMD R1 shoes – $85

The packing lists on r/onebag put Adidas NMD R1 shoes as number one. The Adidas brand has 9 redditors over the next nearest shoe brand, Nike, at 6. The NMD R1 is the only specific shoe with 3 votes. Only two other specific shoes (both sneakers) had 2 votes. 

I have deep misgivings about this one. One of my defining beliefs is that men should travel with only one pair of shoes and that that pair of shoes should be some kind of solid, unremarkable black work shoe like Geox or Ecco or Lems. Black shoes like Geoxes look fine at the office or at a bar; these days they’re made of such amazing materials that they perform like a sneaker or a work boot. 

The NMD R1s look fine, I guess, as far as sneakers go. Until my mid-twenties, I wore nothing but Adidas Sambas, so I can’t really complain. I particularly appreciate that you can buy these Adidas in full black. That’s something I guess.

One pair Lululemon abc trousers and one pair Outlier Futureworks – $129.99 and $148

The mode for trousers was two pairs and the lead was fairly evenly split between Lululemon (5) and Outlier (4), so I decided to split the difference.  In terms of specific trousers, abc was the favorite with 4 redditors. A few trousers had 2 redditors including Outlier Futureworks and Outlier Dungarees.  I chose Futureworks for my list because I like the look better than the Dungarees. 

Outlier New Way shorts – $128

Shorts were again a difficult decision between Lululemon and Outlier, and here the mode across the lists is only one pair, so I had to choose.  The most popular brand was Lululemon with 4, against 3 for Outlier. However, all 3 of those redditors brought Outlier New Way shorts, while the Lululemon were split among various products, with nothing having more than 1 vote. 

In the end I decided to go with New Way because I think I prefer them as shorts. They look quite formal, so you could probably wear them around town in Italy, which is the key test for shorts in my opinion. Outlier also says that they’re designed for swimming, which is useful. 

The Lululemon options brought by redditors were the Board shorts and the Pacebreakers. These seem like more standard workout / swim / lounge-around-the-hotel-room shorts.

Patagonia capilene baselayer shirt – $129

Most redditors brought a shirt and Patagonia capilene seems the most popular choice. In terms of brands, Patagonia was tied with Uniqlo at 4 but, for Patagonia, 3 people specified the capilene and most people didn’t specify a product for Uniqlo.

Again, on a personal level, I agree that one shirt is plenty for a onebag but I feel pretty strongly that that shirt should be a blue button down. I almost picked a button down for this list in spite of the results from Reddit. There are lots of button downs in the list but they’re spread over lots of brands – J Crew, Kathmandu, Bluffworks, etc. Patagonia markets the capilene as a base layer and I start to worry that I shouldn’t have even included these base layers in the shirts category at all. So not really too confident about this one but Patagonia capilene feels like the honest choice for the time being.

Three Uniqlo Airism tee shirts – $44.70

This one is pretty straightforward. Uniqlo was the top brand with 13 votes and 4 of those said they packed Airism.  Five people said Lululemon but they didn’t specify a particular shirt. I’ve made sub-decisions on the type of Airism shirt – crew neck and regular sizing.

Four Uniqlo Airism boxer briefs – $59.60

The same here. Eleven people chose Uniqlo and almost all of them specified Airism. Second place was Ex Officio with five.  

The really key sub-decision here was boxers or boxer briefs, both of which are offered by Uniqlo Airism. I myself mostly wear boxers (though not Airism) but my impression from reading the lists was that boxer briefs were more popular. Also the boxer briefs on the Uniqlo website are more prominent than the boxers and there are more options, which suggests to me that boxer briefs are the big seller in terms of Uniqlo Airism underwear. I’ve gone with boxer briefs.

Three pairs of Darn Tough socks – $56.85

Darn Tough socks are a slam dunk in terms of brand. Darn Tough has been the clear winner every month both for men and women. The current count is 17 mentions for Darn Tough against 5 for the nearest competitor, Smartwool.  

In terms of specific Darn Tough products, I’m less confident. The big decisions seem to be style and length. Mostly people didn’t provide this level of detail but I had a few votes for Darn Tough “tactical” and a few for quarter length socks. What I’m really looking for are socks that are okay for every occasion – dinner, hiking, sports – and I feel that the myriad styles are designed to counteract that. Still, these tactical quarter length black socks seem somewhere down the middle in terms of style and use. 

iPhone 8 – $449

Everything so far has been an item packed in a majority of the 63 packing lists I reviewed on Reddit. Phones did not quite make the cut – only 30 people mentioned their phone. I assume everyone packed a phone but lots of people didn’t mention it. Perhaps they forgot, perhaps they didn’t think it was worth mentioning. Someone on Reddit suggested that it shouldn’t be included in a packing list because it’s just in your pocket, not in your bag.

I’ve included a phone in my packing list nevertheless because I want this list to cover everything that you need to travel with – the whole kit and caboodle.

Most of the phones packed on r/onebag were iPhones: 15 iPhones to 7 Google Pixels. Most people didn’t give detail about their iPhone model. I chose the iPhone 8, which seems to be the cheapest model you can buy new.

A phone charger and usb wall plug

There are great things to be done with cables (for instance) but this isn’t the moment. For now, I’ve just included a phone cable and wall usb plug on the list so it’s not forgotten but I haven’t included links. I think the cable and wall plug are usually included with a new phone, so I haven’t listed a price either. Remember to bring the right wall plug for where you’re going.

Airpods – $199

Apple Airpods were the most popular choice among onebaggers. Nine people brought Airpods compared to 7 people who brought Sony. I don’t have much data between Airpods and Airpods Pro and have chosen regular Airpods because they’re cheaper.

Anker PowerCore Portable charger – $49

This was another easy choice. Of the 63 packing lists, 43 brought portable chargers and 15 of those named Anker. The next highest was Aukey with 3, so it’s no contest. The PowerCore was the Anker product named in almost all cases.

Muji folding toothbrush – $2.75

Thirty nine people said they brought toothbrushes, 6 named a specific product, and 2 said it was the Muji folding toothbrush, so that’s what I’ve gone with. 

Dent tabs toothpaste – $10.39

Thirty four people brought toothpaste but only 3 listed a brand or product – Colgate tooth powder, White Glo, and Dent Tabs. No one mentioned a plastic tube of Crest or Colgate or whatever, though I’m sure that’s what most people brought. The three products that people did mention all look interesting and possibly better than a plastic tube. Dent Tabs claim to be more sustainable and greener than tubes, so that’s what I’ve gone with.

Ten dollars is kind of expensive for toothpaste but above I’m proposing to spend $128 on shorts and $129 on a shirt, so I guess money is no object for purposes of this imaginary list.

Tom Bihn Nik’s wallet – $24

Like the phone, a wallet is another thing that did not make the cut – only 24 of 63 people listed a wallet – but that I nevertheless consider essential. A few wallets were mentioned but only this Tom Bihn wallet was mentioned by two people.

Passport, tickets, housekeys, glasses and prescription medication

These things don’t lend themselves to actual brands of products and usually aren’t mentioned on the Reddit packing lists anyways. I include them on my list for completeness, just in case someone uses this as a checklist. 

Numbers by item and brand

Here are the numbers by item and brand:

53 of 63 people said they brought a backpack and 9 of those said they brought some kind of Osprey backpack

38 of 63 brought a day bag and 4 brought Osprey

41 of 63 brought packing cubes and 11 brought Eagle Creek

52 of 63 people brought a jacket and 12 brought Arc’teryx

49 of 63 people brought shoes and 9 brought Adidas

57 of 63 people brought trousers, 6 brought Outlier and 5 brought Lululemon

41 of 63 people brought shorts and 3 brought Outlier

48 of 63 people brought a shirt and 4 brought Patagonia 

55 of 63 people brought tee shirts and 13 brought Uniqlo

55 of 63 people brought underwear and 11 brought Uniqlo

56 of 63 people brought socks and 17 brought Darn Tough

30 of 63 people brought a phone and 15 brought an iPhone

17 of 63 people brought a cable for their phone

42 of 63 people brought headphones or earphones and 9 brought Airpods

43 of 63 people brought a portable charger and 15 brought Anker

39 of 63 people brought a toothbrush and 2 brought Muji

34 of 63 people brought toothpaste and 1 brought Dent Tabs

24 of 63 people brought a wallet and 2 brought Tom Bihn

Only a handful of the 63 mentioned passports, tickets, keys, etc.