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Pokemon TCG: How To Store Your Cards

January 4, 2022

Pokemon TCG is an expensive hobby and you don't want to store your rare and valuable cards in ways that will damage them, especially if you ever want to resell them.

Mint condition cards are some of the most sought-after Pokemon Cards on the market. They can fetch thousands of dollars for the rarest, with some even selling above one-hundred thousand dollars!

So when you get an amazing pull, storing it correctly is vital to keeping it from getting damaged.

In this guide we'll look at the different types of Pokemon TCG storage products you can buy to store your cards safely. We'll also discuss best practices for sending and receiving cards, and other useful tips for keeping your Pokemon TCG cards in pristine condition.

Pokemon Cards Can Damage Easily

Scuffed Charizard TCG

Whether you're an avid Pokemon Collector or just a simply want to have fun, you'll find that Pokemon Cards can be easily damaged.

Your Pokemon Cards can pick up surface scratches, edge indentations, bends and dents, sun damage and plenty of other things if you leave your cards just laying around. Pokemon Cards that are heavily played often end up at the bottom of the table in terms of grading due to how easily they are damaged when handled.

Pokemon TCG cards are essentially made out of very thin cardboard, foil and paper. The foil material is highly susceptible to scratching, which can occur by just grazing your fingernail over it. The corners can also peel, revealing the holographic foil and they won't survive water damage.


Pokemon Cards can be graded by professional grading companies, such as PSA or Beckett.

Whilst they are widely known for grading sports cards, they also are the most well-known for Pokemon Cards. Each card is given a rating (usually out of 10) to determine how good the card condition is.

The exact grading process is unknown, but they look at every millimeter of the card to determine the grade, using microscopes and other tools.

Sometimes, even a freshly printed card isn't good enough to get the top grade due to printing errors, of which Pokemon TCG is notorious for.

That being said, if you are lucky enough to get a mint condition Pokemon card from a Booster Pack, you'll then want to make sure it is properly protected to help preserve it's value and allowing you to handle your cards without damaging them.

Pokemon Card Sleeve Protectors

If you don't want to fork out lots of money protecting your cards, one of the cheapest and cost-effective ways of protecting your Pokemon Cards is to use Card Sleeves.

Card Sleeves can cost less than a penny per sleeve and are used as basic protection when handling a card.

Ultra Pro is one of the top popular sleeve brands; you can get around 100 sleeves for $2-$3.

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They offer:

  • Archival-grade, acid-free and non-PVC soft card sleeves
  • UV technology to help prevent a card from fading
  • Each sleeve is 6.35cm x 8.89cm, perfect for Pokemon Cards

There are many other brands that offer sleeves also. When you buy Elite Trainer Boxes, you often get a bunch of Pokemon branded sleeves for your cards also, though you may find these not as silky as the Ultra-Pro ones.

Pokemon Card Top Loaders

Once your cards are sleeved, the next level of protection is something referred to as a top-loader.

A top-loader is a durable and thick card holder that adds extra protection to the card, especially when they are being transported. The extra sturdiness that a top-loader offers is essential for preventing your Pokemon Cards getting all bent out of shape.

ultra-pro Top loaders

Most people will use a card sleeve and a top-loader together when storing their rare cards or selling them online. Usually you won't be able to use a top-loader in a binder however, due to the restrictiveness of binder card sleeves.

Our recommendation for Top Loaders are the Ultra-Pro Top Loaders.

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Pokemon Card Binders

Collectors of other trading card games will know that there are so many different binders that it can be hard to decide which ones are the best for Pokemon Cards.

A binder is a great way to look at your Pokemon Card Collection and keeping everything organized. However, some binders can cause damage to your cards if they are not stored properly.

Vault-X Sleeves Pokemon TCG

We recommend using a sleeve for each Pokemon Card you add to a binder to give it extra protection- especially if you will be taking your cards in and out of the binder quite often.

One of the best binders on the market is the Vault-X Binders.

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  • Available in 12-slot, 9-slot and 4-slot binders
  • The binder has a padded outer-casing to help protect your cards from being dropped
  • Exo-Tec version features a zip all around the binder to keep your cards safely inside
  • Hold up to 360 cards- more than enough for some Pokemon Sets
  • Competitively priced- the 9-slot, 360 card binder costs less than $30.00 USD
  • Cards are side-loaded; meaning you're less likely to damage a card when inserting it into a binder

There are many different TCG binders out there. The best we've used has been the Vault-X so far.

Pokemon Cards Storage

If you're an avid collector of Pokemon TCG, you'll probably have picked up hundreds if not thousands of cards trying to pull the best cards possible. They soon start taking up space in your house and you'll likely end up putting them somewhere like your loft or basement.

You should consider the type of storage container you use to put your Pokemon Cards in.

Whilst dumping them all in an old shoe-box is the least expensive method, they can still be vulnerable to events like flooding and ruin all your cards. You might think the likelihood of that is small, but when you're putting thousands of dollars into Pokemon Cards it's worth paying to have them properly stored.

One of the best solutions for Pokemon Card Storage is to use the tins that come with special Pokemon TCG products. The simply metal cases will help protect from water and small animals, and you usually can collect plenty of them when you buy Pokemon Cards.

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Pokemon TCG Tins are not perfect by all means. If you want something that is 100% waterproof, you'll want either a plastic or metal container that explicitly says it is waterproof.

If your collection is so large that it is potentially worth tens of thousands of dollars, you might want to consider having your cards secured in a private security storage unit.

How Do Your Store Your Pokemon Cards

Let us know in the comments how you store your Pokemon Cards? Do you use a particular Binder type? What about storage boxes? Anyone using display cabinets? Let us know below!

Content within this article contains copyrighted material of Nintendo. We are not affiliated with Nintendo or Pokemon in any way.


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Aleph - Editor In Chief

Aleph is the main writer and programmer of DigitalTQ. His aim is to provide quality gaming guides, articles and news from the video game industry. We've been playing games since the 90s and are always on the lookout for new gems to play.


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