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As someone with thousands of Pokemon cards, I’ve learnt a thing or two about how to store them correctly!

I also have young kids who like to do the opposite…

how not to store pokemon cards
How I feel when I go into our playroom!

In this article, I’m going to share with you my exact strategies to keep your collection compact and protected.

So if you’re drowning in cardboard, read on – I’m going to help you!

The Two Best Storage Methods

To put it simply, you should either be storing your Pokemon cards in:

  1. Binders
  2. Storage Boxes

Binders are perfect when you’re collecting a particular set, or to appreciate your best cards. 

Storage boxes are great for dealing with sheer volume. This may be in the form of cards you’re selling like me, or simply just a way to store all of your bulk. 

How to Protect Your Cards Before Storage

Now, whether they’re going in a binder or a box, there’s a bit of confusion around whether you should ‘sleeve your cards’. 

If this term is new to you, it’s the process of putting the card in a Penny Sleeve, which is a soft, flexible plastic cover. And then a Semi Rigid Card Sleeve or Top Loader. These are thicker pieces of plastic that helps stop the card from being bent. 

Here’s my rules for sleeving your cards:

  1. Any card of value goes in a Penny Sleeve, then a Semi Rigid – these are Holos, Reverse Holo’s and Non Holo Rares.
  2. And card that’s a Non Holo Common or Uncommon goes in a Penny Sleeve.

Because I grade a lot of cards, I always use Semi Rigids instead of Top Loaders. This is because Semi Rigids stop the card moving around in the plastic, whereas Top Loaders don’t. Hence, the card can get damaged.


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Next, Let’s Talk Binders

Nothing beats flicking through a Pokemon card binder! It’s such an efficient way to see great cards all in one go. Plus it’s what we used to do as kids right?!

Nowadays, some collectors like to go the extra mile and protect cards in their binders. This is because the cards may be worth more in the future, and it’s worth keeping them in mint condition. 

They do this by putting the cards in Penny Sleeves before they go into the binder. Sometimes they even put them in Top Loaders too, and buy special Top Loader Binders! 

Personally, I don’t do this. 

For me, a binder is about looking at and appreciating the cards. When there are two extra layers of plastic involved, you just can’t see it as clearly. Especially when there’s a cool Holo effect.

But this is totally your call. If you want to Penny Sleeve them before they go in, do your thing!

Now, Storage Boxes

There are several different options on the market when it comes to Pokemon card storage boxes:

Deck Boxes

I prefer to use big Deck Boxes. 

pokemon card deck box storage

This is because they are perfect for storing large amounts of Graded Cards and Semi Rigids. 

They enable me to keep my selling stock organised and compact, and my ‘To Be Graded’ pile neat and tidy too. 

I also like how they use a soft velvet on the inside to avoid scratches, with an easy-access lid on top.

Cardboard Boxes

Cardboard boxes are brilliant for storing ‘bulk’. 

If you’re unfamiliar with this term, it’s basically all of the low value common / uncommon cards that are left over from pack opening. You don’t want to throw them away because you’ve paid for them, but they are clutter culprits in most collector’s houses!

For bulk, you can get these wonderful 3-4 row cardboard boxes, built especially for trading cards. 

Each box can fit hundreds of cards, and are the perfect solution to keep your collection under control. 

Lockable Trading Card Safes


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For high value graded cards, I recommend purchasing a lockable storage box. 

The best ones have nice slots for each card, with a lot of foam and internal protection to keep your valuables safe.

READ NEXT: How to Display Your Pokemon Cards