The 8 Best Playing Cards in 2021 for Poker, Card Games, and More
Who Makes the Best Playing Cards for Poker, for Card Games, and other Entertainment?
Playing cards are so versatile to have around the house, as they can be used for so many different things. Card games that use playing cards are incredibly popular, and the number of different games out there is staggering. They are also used for many magic tricks and card tricks for enthusiasts of magic.
For those in the market for a new deck of playing cards, how do you know which brand or which type of cards to go with? On the market there are countless numbers of playing card brands and within each brand often multiple different styles, sizes, prints, and more.
Rest easy, though, as I’ve compiled a list of the 8 best playing cards on the market. Whether you’re looking for the perfect deck to take your card tricks to the next level, want to buy cards in bulk to host poker tournaments, or are just looking for a few decks to keep around the house to play card games, this list will have you covered. Read on to find your perfect deck of cards!
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8. Tally Ho Circle Back Two Pack Red/Blue
An affordable playing card option that will hold up to regular use, great for card games
Tally Ho’s Circle Back playing cards are a great, affordable option for playing cards. This pack comes with one red deck and one blue deck and works great for poker nights at the house or card games with family and friends.
These cards are a great all-around playing card deck. Many magicians enjoy using the Tally Ho brand for their card tricks. They’re also quite popular with poker players and card enthusiasts as well. Made of quality paper components, these will feel and look good while you play.
While nothing fancy or high end, Tally Ho has been consistently making quality playing cards for years. Their circle back design is a signature of the company, and is known for the quality and reliability of each and every deck. Pick these up for the best cheap playing cards, a great option to get playing or performing tricks without needing to put down a lot of money.
|✅ Quality playing cards at a very affordable price point||? Cards are not plastic or waterproof, so won’t clean up easily if they get messy or spilled on|
|✅ Great all around cards, good for card games, poker nights, and card tricks||? Doesn’t come with a protective card case or anything|
|✅ Set comes with 2 decks, one in red and one in blue|
7. Brybelly 12 Deck Pack Jumbo Index Playing Cards
People who play a lot of card games or for poker/card tournaments where many decks are needed
The perfect choice for someone who needs a lot of decks of cards, this Brybelly 12 Deck Pack of Jumbo Index cards is a great choice for hosting poker tournaments or casino nights, or is a wonderful buy for anyone who plays a lot of card games.
This 12 pack comes with 6 red decks and 6 blue decks, all with jumbo index so the cards are easy to read. They are offered in a regular index 12 pack as well. All cards are plastic coated for ease of use and shuffling, along with easy cleanup. These playing cards are poker sized, which is slightly wider than standard card sizes. They’re a bit more comfortable to see and use, but won’t work quite as well for games that require you to hold a lot of cards, such as bridge.
If you are hosting a poker tournament or other event that will need a lot of decks of cards, this is the perfect choice for you. You’re getting quality cards that will hold up to use, will be easy to read and see, and can be cleaned easily since they are plastic coated, all for a great, affordable price. Pick these up today for our best playing card bulk buy and be set for quite some time.
|✅ 12 decks, 6 blue and 6 red, for a great price||? If you’re looking for top quality cards or waterproof cards then look elsewhere|
|✅ Jumbo Index Poker size cards are easy to read and comfortable to use||? Poker size are slightly wider so won’t feel as comfortable for games where you have to hold a lot of cards in hand|
|✅ Plastic coated cards will hold up better than just paper cards|
6. Bee Playing Cards Red and Blue 2 Pack
Durable, easy to shuffle cards, perfect for poker night with your friends
Another great company on our list, Bee has been making playing cards for quite some time and have been doing it well. This 2 pack of poker sized playing cards, one red and one blue deck, are a great choice for poker nights.
Marked by Bee’s signature diamond back design, these club special cards are instantly recognizable by many. They’re made to be durable and easy to play with, so you can worry less about shuffling the cards and more about dealing and playing. Poker sized and regular index will give a nice feel for poker nights, but they can also be used for card games that won’t require large amounts of cards to be held in the hand at one time.
If you play many card games, you’ve likely heard of the Bee name. They’re a popular brand for playing cards, and they continue to put out quality-made decks year after year. They may not wow you with fancy designs or advanced technology, but they do promise and deliver cards that will get you playing and enjoying card games. They’re one of the most reliable and best playing card brands out there today.
|✅ Quality, reliable, easy to use playing cards||? These cards aren’t plastic or waterproof|
|✅ Great price point to get 2 decks to play poker and other card games||? Poker size cards may not be comfortable for card games where you hold a lot of cards in your hand at one time|
|✅ Features Bee’s signature club special diamond back in both red and blue decks|
5. Hoyle Waterproof Clear Playing Cards
A different looking card, one that is washable and durable, great for outdoor use
A very different entry here on our best playing cards list, the Hoyle Waterproof Clear Playing Cards look very unique with their clear backs and design. They’re designed in such a way, though, to prevent other people from being able to see what suit or card it is, even with the clear backs.
These cards are completely waterproof and are made with clear plastic card stock. If they get dirty you can wash them or wipe them off for easy cleanup. Shuffling and handling them are comfortable and easy, unlike some plastic cards that feel very slick. Take them with you to the beach, use them by the pool (or even in the pool), or pack them for your next camping trip.
Hoyle’s waterproof cards and fun, unique, and so versatile in how and where they can be used. They’re a perfect purchase for trips, vacations, or for anyone who is regularly on the go. Buy a pack or two today and enjoy them anywhere and everywhere you want! They’re the best waterproof playing cards you’ll find.
|✅ Made from plastic card stock and waterproof so they can be used anywhere and make for easy cleanup||? Not everyone likes the feel of plastic playing cards|
|✅ Clear backs for a unique design, but is still easy to read and functional||? Some people don’t like the different look they used with these clear back cards|
|✅ Great for BBQs, beach trips, vacations, using by the pool, and more|
4. Copag 1546 Design Plastic Playing Cards
A high quality, 100% plastic card that will stand up to regular use and a company that offers individual card replacements to lengthen the life of your deck
Copag is a well-known playing card company, and their 1546 design playing cards don’t disappoint. They’re high quality, feel great when you use them, and look incredible. Better yet they’re made of plastic, so they’ll last a long time and can be cleaned up relatively easily.
Made in Brazil, these Copag cards are made to feel and perform more like traditional paper playing cards, but they’re made out of plastic so they have increased durability and last a long time. On top of that, Copag offers individual card replacement, so you won’t have to throw the deck away if you lose a card; just visit their website and request a replacement.
This Copag 1546 2 deck pack is a great value for a top quality set of playing cards. You get one purple back deck and one grey back deck, which stand out from most of the red/blue packs. Buy this pack and know you’re playing with one of the best playing card sets; they’re perfect for poker and card games of all kinds.
|✅ High quality plastic cards made in Brazil that feel more like paper cards but play and last like plastic cards||? Some people may not like plastic cards as much as paper cards|
|✅ 2 decks of poker sized playing cards packed in a plastic storage case||? Poker size cards may feel a little large in your hand, especially playing games where you have to hold a lot of cards|
|✅ Copag offers individual card replacement so you no longer have to get rid of a deck if you lose a card|
3. Da Vinci Ruote Italian 100% Plastic Playing Cards
Top end plastic cards that are made by a reliable company, ones that are great for poker games or card nights
Coming in at #3 on our best playing card list is these wonderful Da Vinci Ruote plastic playing cards. They look and feel great and come in a 2 pack, perfect for poker nights or cards with friends or family.
The Da Vinci Ruote line of cards are 100% plastic and wash/clean up very easily if they get spilled on or messy after use. They also will hold up better to repeated use and shuffling and will resist creasing or tearing. People who play regularly may prefer plastic cards since they last longer. They’re poker sized and come with one red deck and one blue deck in a hard shell case.
Made in Italy by the well-known card company Modiano, the Ruote plastic playing cards are popular for poker players. Lots of shuffling and use require cards that will hold up well, and these do this superbly. Pick up a set of these, or several, and enjoy poker night or a game of cards without worrying about if your cards will hold up. They’re definitely one of the best playing cards for poker.
|✅ High quality cards made in Italy by Modiano||? You’ll be paying extra for the Modiano name and quality craftsmanship|
|✅ Plastic cards have better durability and will last longer than paper cards, while also offering easier cleanup||? Not everyone likes the feel of plastic cards|
|✅ 2 decks in a hard shell case for easy storage and travel, with cut cards included in the set|
2. Ellusionist Bicycle Black Ghost Playing Cards
A unique and different looking deck of cards that are fun for card games but also work really well for magicians and card tricks
Designed with magicians and card trick enthusiasts in mind, the Bicycle Ellusionist Black Ghost playing cards are sturdy, well-made cards with a nice smooth finish for performing all sorts of tricks. On top of all of that, they’re gorgeously designed cards that look and feel great. The face cards really look fantastic in this deck.
Designed by Ellusionist, these cards are all black and white except for a deep red used for the hearts and diamonds suits. They’re standard sized, so they work great for creating a unique experience for your card night. Made from a thick, high-grade stock and finished to be very smooth, these cards are truly one-of-a-kind.
These Bicycle Ghost cards are truly the best playing cards for magicians and people who enjoy card tricks. They’ll hold up to regular use, look fantastic, and will really set the finishing touches on your tricks. The Bicycle name is well-known in the card world and these unique cards really live up to the quality name the company is known for. Buy these for a fun card night or to set off your next card tricks!
|✅ Made from high quality card stock and finished to be smooth and easy to handle||? These can be fun to play card games with, but there are many other choices designed more for card nights|
|✅ These cards look incredible with their black and white style marked by a deep red for the hearts and diamonds||? Some people think these cards are harder to read for regular use|
|✅ Designed by Ellusionist and backed by the Bicycle brand|
1. KEM Arrow Red and Blue Playing Cards
The best playing cards out there, ones that will stand up to continual use and are washable for easy cleanup
Topping our list for the best playing cards is the KEM Arrow Red and Blue playing card 2 pack. Made of the best materials and designed to hold up against lots of use, these cards will go above and beyond for poker games and card nights, but also work great for card tricks.
KEM makes these cards from cellulose acetate plastic, a blend of paper and plastic that gives the feel and performance of paper cards while offering the durability and easy clean that plastic cards provide. KEM has gone out of their way to find the perfect balance between these two for a card that looks and feels great through many uses. These poker sized cards come in a 2 pack, one red deck and one blue deck, both with the signature KEM arrow design. They’re packed in a storage box to help store and transport the cards.
If you’re looking for a quality set of playing cards, you can’t go wrong with KEM. Buy these today and know that you’re getting the best playing cards on the market. They’ll make sure your card or poker night goes off smoothly. They’ll stay in good condition for a long time and clean up easily if needed.
|✅ Made from cellulose acetate plastic for the feel of paper cards but the durability and easy clean of plastic cards||? KEM makes quality cards but prepare to pay more for them than other brands|
|✅ 2 superb decks in a protective plastic case, one red deck and one blue deck||? Poker sized cards might make games where you hold a lot of cards in your hand more difficult|
|✅ Regular index poker sized cards are perfect for poker night, but also work well for other card games|
Best Card Games with Playing Cards
There are so many great card games out there that it can be hard to decide what to play for your next game night. Check out a few of our top picks for best card games with playing cards!
Poker – perhaps one of the most popular card games to date, poker is the go-to game for many people across the world and has surged in popularity more recently. This game of chance and skill offers players the chance to put their wits and their luck against their opponents, with the goal to win hands and chips or money along the way.
There are a ton of different versions of poker, but Texas Hold’em is a very popular one right now. Other versions include Omaha, 7 Card Stud, 5 Card Draw, and Razz, to name a few. Pick up a 2 pack of KEM Arrow cards for the best playing cards for poker.
Hearts – hearts is a trick taking card game, usually for 4 players. Each player is dealt their hand and then will play one card each round in turn, following suit if able, with the goal of scoring the fewest number of points. Each heart card is typically worth 1 point and the queen of spades is worth 13 points.
There are many different strategies to win at hearts. Will you try to avoid taking any point cards and aim to make your opponents take all the points? Or you can aim to take all the point cards in a round, known as shooting the moon, and give each opponent 26 points. The game ends when one player reaches 100 points, so plan you moves carefully.
Blackjack – another casino game on the list, Blackjack is a very popular game of chance and pressing your luck. Unlike a lot of other games, in Blackjack you play against the dealer as you try to get 21 or end with a higher score than the dealer. Chips are bet and won if you beat the dealer on that round.
The dealer and all players are dealt 2 cards, one face down and one face up. Players can choose to hit (get an additional card) or stand, stopping and ending their turn for that round. Once all players have stood then the dealer plays out their turn, following specific rules for when to hit or stand. Players also have some other options, such as splitting and doubling down to give more options.
Spades – Spades is another trick taking game that is great fun. It’s played in teams of 2 against 2, with each team trying to bid on and win tricks to earn the most points to win the game. The game plays until one team has earned 500 points, although smaller points totals can be used for shorter games.
After being dealt their cards, each player starts the round by bidding a number of tricks they think they’ll win. Teams work together to try and win the number of tricks they bid, being careful not to go under or over. Rounds are played by one player leading a card, and then all players must follow suit if they can. If they can’t follow suit then they can play in any suit. High card of the suit wins the trick, but spades are trump so any spade will beat a high card in the suit lead.
Spades is great fun for card night, and requires you and your teammate to work well together to understand playstyles so you can win the tricks. If you’re looking for a different game for your next card game, check out spades. And pick up the Tally Ho two pack playing cards for a great affordable playing card option.
FAQs about Playing Cards
Who makes the best playing cards?
KEM makes the best overall playing cards. They’re great for poker nights but also work superbly for card nights with friends and family. Their cards hold up to regular use, are made from plastic for easy cleanup but still play more like traditional paper cards, and have very appealing card back designs.
Which are the best waterproof cards?
For truly waterproof cards, pick up Hoyle’s clear back waterproof playing cards. They’re a fun and different design but still are easy to read and use. They’re 100% plastic and waterproof so they can be wiped down if they get dirty and can be used anywhere. Take them to the beach, use them for outdoor BBQs, or even throw them in the pool for fun diving games!
Who makes the best cheap playing cards?
If you’re looking for a few great, affordable card options, go for the Tally Ho Circle Back playing cards. You get 2 packs at a great price and they should play well and hold up to regular use for awhile.
If you’re in the market for lots of decks of cards, the Brybelly 12 pack playing cards are perfect for poker tournaments or for someone who plays a lot of card games. The pack comes with 6 red decks and 6 blue decks so you can play for quite some time without having to worry about running out of good decks of cards.
Which is the best playing card brand?
KEM takes the award for the best playing card brand out there today. While you’ll pay extra for their quality cards, they really will stand up and perform better than other card brands. They’re made from plastic to give strength, durability, and longevity, but are designed to feel closer to paper cards for that more authentic playing card feel. They’re easy to cleanup and look great.
Final Thoughts on the Best Playing Cards
Playing cards are great things to have on hand around the house, as they can be used for so many fun things. There are so many card games to learn and play for hours of entertainment, ranging from solitaires, to trick taking games like hearts or spades, to poker. Being prepared with the right deck of cards will set you up for a successful night of gaming.
Whether you’re looking for a few cheap decks to have on hand for the occasional card night, need to make a bulk purchase for a poker tournament, or want the best playing cards on the market to take game night to the next level, you’ll find it here. Pick up a few decks and get to playing!
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