Guide for The Best Self Defense Weapons
Guide to Self Defense Weapons and Devices
Everyone deserves the ability to protect themselves from harm. For this article, we will be discussing 9 different self defense weapons or devices with information about how it works, what it is, and the pros and cons of each!
For the first product, we will be discussing pepper spray! This nifty device can be used during a scary situation both up close and within arms distance. It is a mix of oleoresin capsicum (also known as OC) and some other ingredients. OC comes from the cayenne pepper, the hottest pepper!
What does it do? Pepper spray is known as an “inflammatory agent” and causes inflammation to whatever target it hits! It is a great alternative to tear gas because it can be bought over the counter and work on those who are under the influence of drugs, which tear gas sometimes doesn’t!
Pepper spray causes intense irritation with mucous membranes, which are found in the eyes, nose, throat, and lungs, with these awful symptoms beginning almost immediately after contact. It can cause temporary blindness, difficulty breathing, and intense pain.
The effects of pepper spray can last from 30-90 minutes, giving you plenty of time to get away from your assailant! Pepper spray also never loses its efficacy – meaning it can always be ready to go until you use the very last bit in your bottle!
Pepper spray is exactly what it sounds like – a spray. You spray it on your attacker and then run for the hills! By the time they are able to see you, you will have had plenty of time to be long gone! I don’t know about you, but that sounds like a great way to protect yourself!
Pros of this product include the ability to use it both up close and from an arm’s length distance, the fact that it will never expire or lose its capacity to work, and that it can be easily hidden in a small bottle in your pocket or purse.
Another great pro is that it only causes short term effects, so you have no guilt of causing lasting damage to your assailant (or killing them). You can also find recipes to mix your own pepper spray at home using peppers and a few other things!
Cons of this product include the possibility of getting some on yourself (and hurting yourself), the fact that it cannot be used for longer distances (such as if a gun is pointed at you from far away), and the fact that you have to be able to access your pocket or bag to get it.
Even with the cons of this product, I fully believe it is a great tool that could be used for self protection! If you are interested in getting pepper spray, a great resource would be here: it has detailed explanations of pepper spray, and also gives you an option to purchase it!
For our second product, we will be discussing a Taser! A Taser is considered “the best non-lethal device available”. They are used to disable an attacker up to 15 feet away.
A Taser works by emitted an electronic pulse through the assailant. You fire it much similar to a gun, and two probes are shot via compressed nitrogen. These do not penetrate the attacker, but simply have to be touching him – they usually have barbs that attach to the attackers clothing.
The electronic pulse incapacitates the attacker by causing an interruption between the electromagnetic pulses that the brain sends the muscles via the spinal cord. Because all brain/body communication occurs via electricity, changing that circuit interferes with communication.
This means that the person who has been shot with the Taser will have uncontrollable muscle spasms, and lose the ability (momentarily) to move their body the way they want to. This means you get time to run away!
The electronic pulses are sent automatically (on a timer) through the Tazer leads attached to their clothes. The way that the Tazer sends these signals means that even the toughest and aggressive assailants cannot be unaffected and will be brought down. This is important for your own protection!
There are many pros to this type of security device. Unlike the pepper spray that we were discussing before, the Tazer can be used from a further distance away. It also puts the perpetrator on the ground, meaning there is no chance they can run at you as you run away – this is a great pro!
Temperature does not affect the Tazer, which is great for those who live in extreme environments (hot or cold). It also does not cause any long term effects or death, so there is again no guilt for you when you use it! It also is super easy to use – just point and shoot.
The cons of this security device are pretty few and far between. One potential con would be if you missed the assailant when you shot, causing a complete loss of the purpose of the device, and it would take too long to reload to be effective if this did happen.
It is also important to note that most stun guns are made for one shot only – you have to order a replacement cartridge and replace it after every shot. This means if you miss, you’re pretty much out of luck.
Another con could be that it is bulkier than some of the other devices available, and could be hard to get out of your bag if you were carrying it in a bag – they do make side holsters (like for policeman) though! They can also be very expensive and out of many people’s price range.
Some resources for tazer purchasing and more info are the following websites:
Our third item is very similar to the second personal defense product we discussed – it is the stun gun. Many times stun guns and Tazers get confused, because they do work in a similar fashion – but while Tazers do have the option to shoot towards the attacker, the stun gun is handheld.
A stun gun does work very similarly to the Tazer, but it does not have the range or the probes. Instead, the stun gun sends the electrical current directly from the probes at the end of the device – meaning you have to use it in very close combat, which could be scary.
A stun gun does come in a variety of different voltages, but there are a lot of listed voltages that are not true, and voltage is not the best way to measure the strength/value of a stun gun as a personal defense weapon.
The stun gun again interrupts the communication between brain and muscles, but it also adds another element to the picture – when the stun gun “fires” or the pulse is touched to the attacker, the muscles are pretty much hijacked!
This means that the muscles are working and contracting, but they are doing so at such a high rate that the glucose that is the energy of the muscles is depleted rapidly. This converts the glucose to lactic acid, which does not serve as energy, so the muscles lose that energy.
This energy loss makes it extremely difficult to move! So the assailant cannot move quickly, and during the elicited charge, they cannot make coordinated intentional movements at all!
The pros of the stun gun are very similar to the pepper spray. It is smaller, easier to conceal and keep on your person, and protects you at a very close range. This would be the perfect weapon for an unexpected attack from behind.
The protection of the stun gun is almost unmatched, except by that of the Tazer. You can also use it multiple times without having to buy a cartridge or reload. You can also “fire” a warning shot of a loud crackling sound to warn your attacker that you will protect yourself.
It is also much less expensive than a Tazer gun.
The cons of the stun gun are also similar to pepper spray – it’s not good for any distance protection. If you are not careful, it is also extremely easy to buy a stun gun that is not very effective or reliable, which could definitely be a liability in a life or death situation!
Having to touch your attacker is probably not something you will want to do, but in a quick scenario where you are focused on protecting yourself, you can easily use the stun gun on the person as they lung or attack you, and when they drop run and scream!
Some great resources for stun guns are the following:
The fourth item we will be discussing is the collapsible batons. These are batons that can extend or collapse into each other, thus making them very portable and easy to use. With a flick of your wrist, the baton will extend and you have a way to defend yourself.
Many different batons are made of different materials, such as different metals or very hard plastics. These are used similar to a bat, swung at your attacker and hitting them can cause immediate damage and give you a chance to escape.
The collapsible baton is similar to a night stick in that it is a very hard object that can be used to defend yourself against an attacker, and it gives you a longer reach to hit your target and get them away from you. The baton is still dependent upon your ability to defend yourself.
Unlike the tazer or stun gun, this does not have any special effects to help you if you are a weaker individual or you are uncomfortable in a hand-to-hand combat setting. But with a little training and an adrenaline rush, these batons can easily be used by anyone – simply swing!
When you swing the baton in the direction of your attacker, the material that the baton is made of is so strong that it can easily cause a tissue injury or even break bone. When you flick your wrist as you swing, it extends the arms of the baton and gives it a longer reach.
The pros of the baton are that it is easier to navigate and hide, and is much less bulky than a night stick. It does not make any noise, and it is easily used with no training necessary. It gives you a longer reach than the stun gun, but no electrical pulse.
Another pro of the baton is that it can be used in a way that surprises your attacker, who may not expect you to have any way to defend yourself. It is also such a hard material, they may not think that you can swing hard enough to do any damage – man, would they be wrong!
The baton is very easily accessible, and anyone can buy one, no questions asked. They also do not cost very much money and can be a very reliably cheap alternative for a self-defense weapon. If you cannot afford an expensive stun gun or Taser or don’t like pepper spray, this is a great alternative.
Also, the batons are available at a wide array of different retailers. You would not have to shop online or find a specialty store in order to get what you are looking for. They are even found at Bass Pro Shop and Cabela’s!
A con of the baton is that there is nothing to help you if you do not swing with power, or if you miss your target. It can also take some getting used to when using it, and you do need to practice swinging and jabbing with it before you are put into that type of situation.
Another con is that the baton is not very helpful when it comes to longer distances between you and your attacker, and it also does not have the type of “warning shot” that the stun gun may have. The batons do not look very intimidating from far away.
A final con is that there is severe damage that can be done with a baton. If the weapon is turned against you, or if you would feel guilty with potentially causing life-lasting damage, you should probably choose a different way to defend yourself.
The following different websites are great resources for those who are interested in finding more information or buying a collapsible baton (or more than one):
Our fifth item we will be discussing is the brass knuckles! This is a very common and popular item for self-defense because of its small, compact size and the use of them on popular TV shows and movies.
Brass knuckles are made with four finger holes and a flat surface that goes towards the palm, strengthening the fist and making the surface of the punch much harder to the opponents skin/face/etc. It can be made out of brass (which the originals were) or it can be made from another metal or plastic.
The reason that the brass knuckle is so effective is not because of the hardness of the metal, but also by increasing the power in the fist, not simply to rely on the brass knuckle as a weapon in and of itself.
The brass knuckle was actually first developed as a handle for knives of the military. The handle made thrusting more powerful and easier, but also gave the carrier a second line of defense by giving the ability to use the handle during hand to hand combat if necessary.
The pros of the brass knuckle are most closely related to their ease of use, the ability to buy them anywhere, and of course the ability to conceal them easily. Because they are attached to the hand, there is no question of getting them out of a bag or pocket when it is needed.
Also, because brass knuckles have been so popular in TV and movies, it is likely that the attacker will recognize the weapon and could be intimidated by it. But it could also be the opposite – because they know and are familiar with the weapon, they may not care.
Brass knuckles are similar to the batons in that they are very accessible – they can be found in many places, and are very cheap in comparison to some of the other personal defense weapons. They are easily found for a decent price.
The cons of the brass knuckle are similar to all close range weaponry – it cannot help you keep the physical attack from occurring by giving you the ability to attack from a distance, but it does help you in a close encounter or hand to hand combat.
Another possible con of the brass knuckle is the fact that it can easily hurt the wearer as much as it hurts the opponent, if not used correctly. If the proper form is not used when punching with these on, it can break the fingers or hand of the user.
When wearing a brass knuckle, the one doing the punching needs to be careful of direct hits. Usually, the safest way to throw a punch with these on is to throw a blow and roll your fingers out of it – thereby causing a glancing blow, but still very much effective.
The brass knuckle is a very effective weapon – a hard enough blow to the head, face, or sternum could cause death to the attacker. Any hit to a hard surface of the body (forearm, leg, etc) could cause very serious injury.
Sources for buying or more information regarding brass knuckles include:
Our sixth personal defense device is the tactical pen. A tactical pen is also sometimes known as a type ofkubotan. It is a small device usually attached to a keychain that can be used in an emergency situation as a weapon to defend yourself.
The tactical pen can come in a variety of forms, but usually takes the appearance of something as simple as a keychain that comes to a dull point at one end and is blunt at the other end. Other types look like an actual writing utensil, and have a pen or pencil attached to one end.
The tactical pen is made out of a hard metal that will have grooved edges to increase the grip, and a writing utensil on one end, with the other end able to serve as a weapon when needed. It will have a hardened tip that is designed to cause injury by penetration or blunt force.
This tool is considered a “multi-tool” and is part of many different survival kits because of the many uses it can serve. Because of the build, it can easily stab, puncture, twist, poke, etc. It is thought to be a great tool to teach you how to think of items differently for survival situations.
The pros of the pen are very similar to all of our other close-proximity hand to hand combat weapons, in that it is easily disguisable, easy to carry, and easily accessible. You can buy a tactical pen anywhere, and they are very cheap for a personal defense weapon.
The pen is also something that can serve other purposes than simply self-defense, including the obvious writing purpose. It is something easily handled, and can be used one handed – it is light, easily maneuverable, and easily concealed.
The pen can also do serious damage when used correctly. The pen can cause puncture wounds, serious deep tissue injury, and enough injury to cause the attacker to pause long enough for you to run away. That is very important for defending yourself.
The cons of the pen are also similar to the other weapons we have discussed – it cannot help from far away. If an opponent is attacking using a distance method (such as a gun) then there is not much that this can do for you, except maybe write a note.
Another con of this weapon is that it is also a weapon that you should train with. Training is easy, but it is something that must be considered. Every other weapon we have discussed needs training as well to be truly effective, except maybe pepper spray.
The training of using the tactical pen is something that you can do at home easily without having to pay for training, and it is something that can be picked up easily once the few basic movements are understood.
Resources for buying tactical pens and finding more information about them can be found here:
Very similar to what we just discussed, our seventh weapon is the kubotan. As reported earlier, the kubotan is a weapon that can easily be hiddeon on a keychain and therefore taken everywhere with you. It is a weapon meant to puncture and stab.
The kubotan is something that can always be readily available, will never jam or break, and can still protect you from an attempted assault. They can be used on targeted areas of the body, and they do not require a lot of training to use.
The kubotan is usually made out of some type of metal or very hard wood, and is made to last forever regardless of the usage. It has been proven to be very effective in a close-range hand-to-hand combat setting, even for women.
The kubotan can be used in ways other than simply stabbing, however. It can also be used to pinch the sensitive skin on the body to cause pain much similar to an electric shock. Some of these body parts include – the larynx, pectoral skin, inside bicep, fingers and thumbs, and the inner thigh.
When using the kubotan to penetrate the skin, some areas to remember are the following: temple, sternum, the armpit, solar plexus, forearm, pelvic bones, back of the hand, upper thigh, and the outer thigh. All of these areas can cause significant pain or trauma, giving you time to run away.
The pros of the kubotan are very similar (if not the same) as that of the tactical pen, including the ability to use it anywhere, the ability to buy it anywhere, and the ability to train yourself to use it very easily. There are plenty of resources to learn about this weapon.
The kubotan is also a weapon that will never break or jam, and will not have any complications when you go to use it. As soon as you have it accessible, you can begin to defend yourself with this platform.
The cons of this weapon are again the same to the tactical pen, including the fact that it can only be used for up close attacks, and must be trained with. It also can be lost easily if you do not attach it to something that you keep on your person regularly.
Resources for kubotan training and buying are:
For our eighth personal defense device, we will discuss the tactical flashlight. Similar to the last two items, this flashlight is made from the idea of the kubotan with the added benefit of having a flashlight on hand.
A tactical flashlight is made with the same type of heavy, military grade aluminum or other metal, and can cause some serious damage when swung towards the face or other body part of an attacker.
The tactical flashlight is built exactly the same way as the tactical pen, except that where the pen was, the flashlight is in this model. It still has the beveled handle and edge, as well as the blunt tip or other tip made to be used as a weapon.
The good thing about the tactical flashlight (and pen) is that there are different models that have different ends – this means that there are some with ends made to break glass, some with ends to penetrate or puncture the body, and some made for simple blunt force trauma.
The pros of the tactical flashlight are (as we said before) the fact that you always have a light, you have a weapon that is easily held and handled and something that can easily be disguised or hidden on your person.
Besides being able to find your way down a dark alley and being able to see things even in the dark, the tactical flashlights have the dual purpose of blinding your attacker. These lights are made to be so bright that when looking directly into it, you are momentarily blinded.
This can defer from even having to come to blows with your attacker. When they are blinded momentarily, you have the chance to turn and run for it! Always remember to scream or yell when you run – make a scene, draw attention to yourself. This could save your life.
Another pro of the tactical flashlight is that the light could potentially scare your attacker away. Even without blinding them, the presence of a bright light has been shown to deter some attacks from even occurring. Again, saving you from having to use the “tactical” side of your flashlight!
A pro of any of the tactical tools is the ease of use and the ability to find them anywhere. They are available even on Amazon and at Walmart these days. Because of the ability to find them anywhere, there are no special requirements for buying, and the prices are extremely reasonable!
One of the cons of the tactical flashlight would have to be the limitation of the weaponry. You are limited to hitting your attacker with the flashlight, or stabbing/puncturing/piercing them with the tactical end of the flashlight.
The only reason that this could be a con is because if the attacker is stronger than you, they could easily wrestle your weapon away from you and then it could become the weapon used to attack you. This is why it is important to train with this tool to make sure you are ready to use it.
Resources for buying and more information regarding this type of personal defense device are:
Our final tool for review is the panic alarm. It is different from our other eight devices in the fact that it cannot be used as a weapon when you are being attacked. It is simply used as a deterrent from attacks occurring.
A panic alarm is a button or tool that is used before/during an event in which makes a very loud noise to draw attention to you and bring help to you during a crisis. These days, there are buttons that you can carry, keychains, and even applications for your phone or mobile device.
There are many different types of panic alarms, including those used for a medical emergency (such as LifeAlert) in which a medical professional or help is alerted to assist you in your emergency. They all work similarly, however.
When an emergency begins to happen or is thought to be impending, the user hits the button and the alarm is set off. This alarm lets everyone know that something bad is happening, and some buttons even alert the authorities to your location and the time of the accident.
The personal panic alarms (or panic buttons) can be installed in your home, in your car, or even on your phone or keychain. They can be used in combination with some of our other personal defense devices, or used on their own.
The pros of the personal alarm are that it is very unobtrusive, can be attached or connected to pretty much anything, and can easily alert the right people in case of an emergency, getting you help sooner.
For those who cannot fight back, or those who do not feel comfortable with their ability to scream or draw enough attention to themselves during an incident, this is an absolute life-saver and can be the perfect personal defense device.
These devices are very easily purchased and are extremely low cost – some are as low as $10! This can be fantastic for those who are on a very strict budget, or who simply don’t want to spend a lot of money on a device.
The pros of this device also include the fact that the sound is so loud it can be momentarily confusing or can stop the attacker for a second, long enough for you to try and get away. There are times this won’t matter, but it could be all you need.
The cons of this device include the above mentioned as well. Although the sound is very loud and irritating, and can cause momentary confusion – it is only good if you are in hearing distance from another person who can respond. If you are in an isolated area, this might not matter.
Another con of this device is that it is battery powered… meaning, that if you do not change the batteries or pay attention to when you put the batteries in the device, it could die on you in the middle of an emergency, or be dead before you even get a chance to use it, putting you in a dangerous situation.
Finally, a final con of the panic alarm is the fact that it can easily be wrestled away from you. If you chose this device because you do not feel confident in your ability to fight back, it can easily be made useless if taken away from you.
Regardless of if it is taken away from you after you alarm it or before, if it is forcibly turned off before it is given a chance to either alert the authorities or alert the people around you, you are still in a situation where you will need to defend yourself. Plan accordingly!
Again, I believe the panic alarm could be a great way and a great investment for anyone that wants an easy to use and a way to have something you do not need to be trained how to use. It also has that added benefit of letting people know where you are, unlike the others.
But it would be most beneficial if it was paired with one of our other devices mentioned (pepper spray, maybe?) or with some simple self-defense lessons. This way, even if something were to happen and the panic button was unsuccessful, there would be a chance of escape.
Some resources for finding a panic button and more information regarding the panic button are found here:
Personal safety should be a priority for everyone. Regardless of your age, sex, or physical activity level, you should have the ability and the option to not only defend yourself, but choose how you wish to do it. Whether it be by having a tool, or having something to prevent, or whatever.
In recent events and the world that we live in, personal safety is becoming more and more important for us, for our children, and for our families. These different tools and weapons can be used for anyone and can be found to work with any age group.
Do your research, find what you are interested in, find your budget, and then determine which tool or device would be best for you. Get one. Get all nine. Whatever makes you feel safest, and whatever you are most comfortable using and won’t doubt your ability to protect yourself.
Defense Express was created to help every day people find the best solutions for self-defense. Being prepared with the right knowledge and tools go a long way in helping preventing and protecting oneself from violent crimes. We do this through various expert’s guides and by reviewing and picking the best products available in the market for self-defense weapons.
We decided to start by focusing on pepper sprays. We believe pepper spray should be in everyone’s pocket as it is highly portable and effective if used correctly. Pepper spray have prevented many crimes and will continue to do so.
We have just released our guide on the best pepper spray that you can buy in the market currently. We are also in the process of testing and reviewing dozens of pepper sprays and and will be releasing our pepper spray reviews in the coming weeks.
- Picking The Best Pepper Spray
- What’s the DIfference Between Mace vs Pepper Spray?
- Short and Long-Term Effects of Pepper Spray
- How to Use Pepper Spray The Right Way for Self-Defense
- Pepper Spray Laws – State-By-State and Traveling Restrictions
- Pros and Cons of Pepper Spray as Self-Defense Weapon
- Pepper Spray Treatment for Skin, Eyes and Mouth
- Leading Pepper Spray Brands