These are the reviews of the best pepper sprays in 2018 with the Sabre 3-In-1 Pepper Spray emerging as the best pepper spray you can buy in 2018. A few dollars spent on a pepper spray with high-quality ingredients, great shooting range, long shelf life, and lightweight can go a long way to enhance your level of security.
Table of Contents
- 1 Why Should I Carry Pepper Spray?
- 2 Reviews Of The Best Pepper Spray 2018
- 3 Pepper Spray Comparison Chart
- 3.1 Best Overall Pepper Spray
- 3.2 Best Pepper Spray For Home Defense
- 3.3 Best Pepper Spray For Men
- 3.4 Best Pepper Spray Gel
- 3.5 Best Pepper Spray For Runners
- 3.6 Best Pepper Spray For Women
- 3.7 Best Budget Pepper Spray
- 3.8 Best Professional Pepper Spray
- 3.9 Best Pepper Spray Gun
- 3.10 Best Pepper Spray For Traveling
- 4 What is pepper spray made of?
- 5 Types of Pepper Spray Patterns
- 6 Factors to consider when choosing the best pepper spray
- 7 The Criteria We Used To Evaluate The Best Pepper Sprays
- 8 Tips
- 9 In Conclusion
You’ve heard this advice a million times: ‘do not walk in a dark alley or move in secluded areas alone especially at night’, but what happens when a stranger tries to attack you in your own home, office, or school. Do you wish for a gun you never had, run to get a knife you’ll never use, or quickly release the contents of a pepper spray onto their body? Think about it.
Pepper sprays have been around for years now, and some countries are even making it legal to carry one in public places as long as it meets the state’s requirements, and you are of legal age. This alone should give you an insight into the number of lives that are saved on a daily basis just by an application of the contents of a bottle.
Why Should I Carry Pepper Spray?
Self-defense is the first reason that comes to anyone’s mind for using a pepper spray, and if the same is your case, then you’re right on track. Having a sense of security irrespective of how little it is or the packaging can be very comforting especially when you’re alone, and the chances of getting help are very slim. You can have an effective, inexpensive, and easy-to-use defense mechanism while in school, office, or when walking through an alley.
You should carry a pepper spray because it can be your saving angel when you least expect it. This is because the contents of these sprays cans can sting the eye and also cause mild to severe burns on the skin of the attacker. Now, it is common knowledge that people respond to stimuli and as such, anyone who can withstand the effects of burns in their eyes is more than superhuman.
On the other hand, carrying a gun may be as helpful and do the job right by feigning attackers away. Unsurprisingly, the average human spends more time trying to decide if they really want to take another human’s life and this time wastage can be very costly. But with a pepper spray that is less harmful, you can make you attacker incapacitated even before they launch an attack.
Reviews Of The Best Pepper Spray 2018
Read our reviews of the best pepper sprays if you want to save some time and money as the market can be filled with products that might disappoint you and doesn’t work. We have taken the time to research, review and rank the 10 best pepper sprays that will we are confident will provide you with the effective personal protection you need.
In this article, we have compiled the top 10 best pepper sprays available that are the very best in 2018
Pepper Spray Comparison Chart
Here’s what we think about these Pepper Sprays.
Best Overall Pepper Spray
Sabre 3-In-1 Pepper Spray is one of the best self-defense sprays with so many reasons to back up its popularity. For starters, it contains UV marking dye that can stain the clothing and skin of an attacker, thereby making it easy to identify them by the law. This stream spray pattern has a wide range of about 10 foot to ensure you do not spray yourself and others accidentally.
Its expiration is tagged at 4 years from the date it was manufactured; hence the durability of its effectiveness is unquestionable. You can use it without worrying about replacing it after a few months, and you can also carry it about easily. This is made possible by its portable size that can even be attached to a belt and carried in a pocket, purse, or backpack.
This spray claims to make even grown men cry because of its strength that can be attributed to its trio major ingredients Red Pepper, CS Military Tear Gas, and UV Dye. Sabre manufacturers also offer a College Safety Program to train the general public techniques that will help them discourage any potential threats and fight off an attack.
Best Pepper Spray For Home Defense
Fox Labs 1 lb. Pistol Grip pepper spray contains a large quantity of Capsaicin solution that can be sprayed on multiple attackers at the same time from a safe distance. This home defense pepper spray is said to contain the world’s hottest ingredients, thus the extent of its effect is unimaginable. It is used by the Police and other Law Enforcement because of its high potency.
This pepper spray has a 3-year shelf life that is above the average, and it contains 125-150 one-second bursts in its canister. You can use it for a long time in your home to protect yourself from intruders. On contact with the skin, it leaves an invisible ultraviolet mark on the body of the assailant for easy identification.
The gun handle of this product has a safety pin to prevent accidental discharges that may be inevitable. Also, its spray range is up to 30 feet, which is long enough for you to discharge its contents even without coming close to an attacker. Based on its naming, this spray has 5.3 Million Scoville Heat Units (SHU) that is used to measure its strength.
Best Pepper Spray For Men
Men will love something more stunning and that is why the Kimber Pepperblaster 2 Grey pepper spray also makes this list as one of the best pepper sprays in 2018. It is more than your regular pepper spray since it resembles a gun. It can be used on an attacker or an animal, and its manufacturer claims it is even effective with people wearing glasses or a ski mask.
On impact with an attacker, this spray can last up to 30 minutes before the effects wear off and this can give you more than enough time to run to a safe zone and find help. Like the working principle of a gun, a shot fired moves with breakneck speed to hit the target, hence having a good aim or practicing may be an added advantage while using this weapon.
On the other hand, there is the disadvantage of a limited number of shots one can fire which is usually two. Unlike the Mace Brand pepper gun whose cartridges can be refilled, the same is not the case with this pepper spray. But on the bright side, one shot is enough to produce the desired effect thanks to the high-quality pepper oil this spray is made of.
Best Pepper Spray Gel
One more effective pepper spray from the popular brand, Sabre, is the Sabre Red Pepper Gel. This best pepper spray gel has a gel spray pattern that produces a sticky chemical to the face of the attacker. It is difficult to remove and wiping with the hand will increase its spread. On its cover is a flip top safety mechanism to prevent any accidental discharge.
This spray has a long range distance of up to 18 feet which will ensure you are at a safe distance while launching its content. You are also free from the negative impacts of the spray. Another important ingredient of this spray is UV marking dye that aids in suspect identification. Now you’ll agree that this does the job right and to think all you need is a little can of Sabre pepper gel.
The makers of this pepper spray claim that it eliminates the 30% failure rate usually encountered with other brands. If this proves to be true, then you can be assured of a pepper spray whose effect cannot be withstood even by the self-acclaimed strongest of them all. What’s more? Since it is sticky, it cannot be easily swayed by the wind to avoid contact with innocent people.
Best Pepper Spray For Runners
Sabre Red Pepper Gel Spray is the first choice and best pepper spray for runners because of its portability and adjustable hand strap. You can go for a run with it, jog through the park, or walk your dog while this spray is safely fastened to your hand. A spray that is portable enough is one that can be carried easily and accessed when you need it most.
This type of pepper spray has the features of the gel spray pattern that produces sticky gel on the attacker’s face. It also has a long range of up to 12-foot and can shoot in a stream fashion from that long distance to meet the target. It is most suitable for use while indoors and outdoors, and the chemical compound is not easily swayed in different directions by the wind.
Sabre Red Pepper Gel Spray also boasts of a 4-year shelf life from the date of manufacture, and this is long enough before its content eventually expires. With this in mind, you do not have to be so concerned about the spray’s content getting ineffective anytime soon as it will be your close companion for at least 4 years.
Best Pepper Spray For Women
One of the best pepper sprays for women is Police Magnum OC-17 Pepper Spray. Its popularity does not only stem from its eye-catching color but what it can actually do in disguise as a pretty weapon. Its concentration of pepper oil is high and as such, it is quite powerful to deliver the expected irrespective of the size of your attacker.
Admirable features of this pepper spray are its Safety Top that will reduce accidental discharges and an Ultraviolet dye for staining and identifying the subjects by the police. Moreover, the Oleoresin Capsicum solution of this spray is non-toxic and non-flammable as is usually the case of pepper sprays with this ingredient.
On impact with the body, Magnum OC-17 Pepper Spray can cause a burning sensation, watery eyes, runny nose, but will not lead to permanent injuries on the skin. Its body is made of nylon to give a firmer grip, and its key ring gives you the choice of turning it into a keychain that will be with you wherever you go. If police officers use it, then women can as well to keep themselves armed.
Best Budget Pepper Spray
While price can help you determine the value of a product, it does not help you determine the quality of one pepper spray over the other. That is why you should also try the best budget-friendly pepper sprays out there like the Guard Dog Security Pepper Spray Keychain. Do not mistake its naming for a dog’s sole purpose because it was manufactured by the company, Guard dog security.
This product provides ease of usage where you can easily hold and operate with one hand, as well as ease of access. You can attach to your keychain, carry around in a purse, pocket, or backpack depending on whichever is most convenient for you. Also, you get a holster with keychain as part of the product pack.
Guard Dog Security pepper spray contains 18% OC which gives it its strength; it has a distance range of 16 feet to enable you to wade off an attack from a significant distance, and also comes with an invisible ultraviolet dye to leave a mark on the attacker’s skin. This mark cannot be washed off, so you have to ensure you do not mistakenly spray it on yourself.
Best Professional Pepper Spray
Fox Labs 5,300,000 SHU pepper spray comes with high ratings and recommendations because it boasts of quality right from its canister. This best professional pepper spray uses a stream pattern that can spray the chemical directly at a part of the body. That is to say; you must have a good aim to use this product and target the most sensitive part of the body.
This spray has a firing range of about 10 to 15 feet, meaning that it is not necessary to come in close contact with your target. It also discharges 12-15 one-half second bursts, a quantity that is considered large enough. This brand of spray has high potency, effectiveness, and reliability; hence a single dose is more than enough to knock out an attacker.
You can use it in the indoors or outdoors and expel as much formula as you’ll like just by a press because it can release 12-15 one-half second bursts. One more thing you may find appealing is the product’s lightweight that makes it very easy to carry about. You can attach it to your keychain and slide into a bag or pocket without carrying around a huge load.
Best Pepper Spray Gun
If you want an effective pepper spray that looks like a gun, then you have to try the Mace brand pepper gun. Although it is not as portable as other pepper sprays, it can save you from an attack if an assailant sees a gun not knowing it is loaded with pepper spray. Like other sprays listed in this guide, it comes with the main Oleoresin capsicum ingredient.
But what makes it a must buy product? Here are some more reasons. It uses a stream pattern that can aim at any part of the target’s body. With more chemicals concentrated in one part like the eye, the effect can extreme. Additionally, you can replace the pepper spray in the gun’s cartridge when you run out of chemicals.
The mace gun from Mace Security International Company comes with an LED strobe light. It can fire up to a long range of 20 feet, giving you the advantage to attack from a long distance before getting attacked. Its easy-to-load cartridges make it another selling point since you don’t have to worry about product expiration or running out of fluid.
Best Pepper Spray For Traveling
Please note, you cannot carry pepper spray in your carry on or on your personal during a flight. Some airlines allow you to check-in a small amount of pepper spray.
Mace Brand Pepper Spray, for its small size and key guard keychain, is one of the best pepper sprays for travelers. Whether you’re on a short or long trip, you can be sure of not losing it thanks to its keychain. Also putting its size into consideration, it won’t be a lot to handle as it is very portable (3 g) to fit into your pocket without feeling like a huge chunk.
The properties of this pepper spray that make it a good choice include 10% of Oleoresin Capsicum pepper formula can cover up to a 5-feet range and uses the most common cone spray pattern. The advantage of this spray pattern is that the spray will have a larger surface area at the point it meets the attacker. It can spread and cover the eyes, nose, and body, without accidentally touching you.
Issues you may have encountered in other pepper sprays like liquid leakage are not encountered when using this spray because it has been appropriately sealed to prevent the escape of liquid. Also, the cap is also tight and does not open on its own accord hence; its small size is not a downside when it comes to the strength of the canister.
What is pepper spray made of?
Pepper spray also known as a lachrymator is made up of non-toxic and non-inflammable constituents that are stored in canisters. The most active ingredient in this chemical compound is Capsaicin, an extract from plants in the genus Capsicum such as Chili Peppers. This ingredient has six levels of irritation each of which determines the strength of its inflammatory effect.
Pepper sprays are non-lethal because they have a composition of Capsaicinoids (Capsaicin and related Capsaicin compounds ) that ranges between 0.18% to 3%. But remarkably, its side effect can be just as intense. Some specially made Pepper sprays also contain dyes that may either be visible or UV-reactive. Other constituents are Orthochlorobenzalmalonitrile and Alphachloroacetaphenone.
Which Pepper Spray is right for me?
There are several pepper sprays out there, and as a result, you have to make the right choice between several products. The best pepper spray you settle on must have a strength that is considered to be higher than average. This is because a spray’s mixture should be able to produce the desired effect when it comes in contact with an attacker’s body.
Equally, your chosen pepper spray must be very portable, easy to use, and carry about. The simple truth is that you can never be certain when and where you might need it, and as such, your pepper spray must be very handy. You’ll have to decide if you need a spray suitable for running, jogging, or traveling or one that is to be used at home, office, or school.
What should I look for in a pepper spray?
To ensure that you purchase the best Pepper spray on the market, you have to look out for certain qualities that make it hold a promise of delivering effectively. Other than the common ingredient Capsaicin in all Pepper sprays, what makes one product stand out from the other? Keep reading, and you’ll find out.
- Moderate product size
While you need a product that contains as much chemical substance as possible, you also have to consider its portability. Can you easily carry in your pocket or wallet? Can it be used with a keychain? And several others. The answer to these questions will help you know the right pepper spray for you once you spot it.
- Expiration date:
Checking the expiration date of any product you buy can save you a lot of trouble because it will be totally useless owning a pepper spray that is ineffective or does not even work. To avoid this, always check the expiration date and ensure it is months or years away before it expires. This will ensure that even if you forget to replace it, it won’t be anytime soon.
- Number of shots
How many shots can this pepper spray offer? Here’s one more thing you need to be concerned about. By being informed on how much you have left, you can easily tell when you’re running low on content. On the other hand, being less aware of the total shots in the product can render you defenseless in an emergency.
How do you measure the strength of the pepper spray?
The strength of a pepper spray can be measured to a certain degree of accuracy by taking the percentage of each constituent into consideration. This is because one can easily be misled by manufacturers when say a given product has strength without stating the type of capsaicinoids used. In such a case, you can still use the following metrics to determine a spray’s strength. They are:
- Capsaicin and related capsaicinoids (CRC):
This metric is used to measure the quantities of chilli oil extract in a pepper spray with the help of a High-Performance Liquid Chromatograph instrument in the lab. Usually, pepper sprays from manufacturers either come with a CRC of 0.18% to 3% for personal pepper sprays and 1.3% to 2% for enforcement pepper sprays. On this account, you may want to buy a pepper spray whose CRC is at least 1% because it’ll have more burning sensation.
- Scoville Heat Unit scale
The Scoville scale measures the strong, sharp smell or flavor of a pepper spray to use it in determining its strength. If a manufacturer’s spray uses high-quality pepper oil even in low quantities, it will still have more strength to penetrate the skin. It is therefore recommended to shop for a pepper spray whose SHU is at least a 500,000 Scoville Heat Units (SHU).
Effects of Pepper Spray on the Body
Pepper sprays are very effective to the extent that even police officers use it. But what actually happens when its contents come in contact with the human skin? Read on to find out. The effects of pepper spray on the body are numerous, where some are more hazardous than others depending on the spray’s Oleoresin Capsicum (OC) percentage. The effects of pepper spray on the body include:
- It affects the eye
When pepper spray enters the eyes, it can cause temporary blindness, swelling of the eyelids, and a burning sensation in the eyes. This does not come as a surprise because pepper spray contains an inflammatory agent that irritates the mucous membranes in the eyes. While a single spray may not have adverse effects, repeated exposure to the eyes can lead to pain in the eyes and impaired vision.
- It affects the respiratory system
Pepper spray can also affect the respiratory tracts such as the mouth, nose, and lungs. When the chemical enters the nose, it can lead to difficulty in breathing and coughing. In patients with asthma, pepper as an allergen on entering the lungs can irritate the nerves and restrict oxygen from entering the airways thereby triggering an attack.
- It affects the skin
A burning sensation can be felt when pepper spray touches the skin. The oil content in sprays may be able to soak and penetrate the skin if the quality of pepper oil used in the spray is high. In some cases, a mark may be left on the skin if the spray contains dye. The dye or UV constituent in some sprays can leave a mark on the skin of the attacker which can be used as identification by the police.
- It affects the general well being of the body
According to recent studies made by a group of researchers, in rare cases, inhaled pepper spray may cause acute hypertension or high blood pressure. This, in turn, increases the risk of stroke or a heart attack. In asthmatic patients, it may trigger an attack due to the restriction of the airways that will lead to chest congestion and difficulty in breathing.
How long does pepper spray effects last?
Pepper spray effect can last for about 20 minutes to 90 minutes. This time may vary depending on the strength of the spray and the part of the body it is applied on. That it is to say, temporary blindness caused by a pepper spray may last from 15 to 30 minutes, while a burning sensation on the skin may last for about 45 to 60 minutes.
What should I do if I spray myself or someone else accidentally?
If you spray yourself accidentally or someone else, you can take certain precautions that will not heighten the effect of the pepper spray. Following the tips outlined below, you can handle the situation in the best way possible even when there is no doctor. Here’s how ridiculously easy it is.
- Remain calm and do not panic, the pain will subside within 7 to 15 minutes.
- Do not rub your eyes in order not to alleviate the burning sensation in the eyes
- Blink faster than usual to remove the pepper residue gradually from your eyes with your tears.
- Navigate to an area where there is clean air to reduce the burning effect with time.
- Carefully change your clothing and avoid contact with your skin while taking it off.
- Spray milk on the affected body parts to reduce irritation.
- Prepare a solution with 75% water and 25% mild soap and submerge your face into it to remove residue.
- For skin pain, do not touch the affected areas but use decontaminating wipes for pepper spray.
Types of Pepper Spray Patterns
Pepper spray comes in four different patterns that represent the output of the content from the canister. These patterns vary from one pepper spray to the other depending on your chosen type. They include Fogger pattern, Foam pattern, Stream or Broken pattern, and Gel pattern.
This type of pepper spray is like a mini shower that covers a large area and can be targeted at more than one person at once. Its content comes out as droplets and does not require a direct aim to reach the target. The disadvantage to this is that innocent people may also be affected when they’re sprayed on unintentionally. On the other hand, it is good for crowd control and can serve as a longer range pepper spray of about 4 to 8 feet.
Foam pattern pepper spray, unlike fogger, is not easily affected by the wind while in action. This is because its content is foamy and when sprayed, accumulates on the target. This way, it is harder to take it off and it lasts longer since most of the power is towards a specific body part. Its range is shorter as it covers only about 4 to 6 feet, as a result, users will have to be close up to the attacker before spraying.
A stream pattern is similar to that of the operation of a water gun. It requires precise and accurate aiming at the target. This means that it can cover a range of about 10 to 15 feet which is a longer than Fogger and Foam patterns because of the uni-directional operation. A disadvantage to this is that you will need some level of training before you can use it to achieve a great aim.
Gel spray pattern does not splatter like the foam pattern rather the canister produces a sticky fluid that is uni-directional. In comparison with stream patter, it will also require that you have a good aim to be able to aim at the target.
Factors to consider when choosing the best pepper spray
Before shopping for the best pepper spray, you need to have qualities of the right product in mind. This is because you can easily be swayed by the brand name, fanciness of the canister or even the color of the spray can which are all really unnecessary. In a nutshell, these basic factors will help you make a better choice. They are:
- The legality of the product.
- The safety feature.
- The size and weight.
- The spray pattern.
- The safety feature.
- The constituents.
- The range and distance.
The Criteria We Used To Evaluate The Best Pepper Sprays
Every pepper spray seeks to provide some level of defense to its owner, but some do the job better than others. We took the following criteria into consideration while evaluating the best pepper sprays in 2018.
The range of coverage, level of protection, and the number of sprays in the canister are outlined for each product on our list for 2018’s best pepper sprays. This is because the feature of your selected spray is of the essence and for this reason, you need to be informed on the distance to give while using this product on the target and how much you will have to use this product for the best effects.
Ease of Use
Also discussed, is the ease of usage for each of our products and if there are any safety features you should look forward to such as a safety top on the spray can. It can be quite rewarding to use a product that provides ease of use because you could always end up in an emergency. Here, the fogger and stream spray patterns are highly recommended because they can be used with ease even without practice.
When it comes to durability, we took a look at the shelf life of each spray and the overall durability of the can. It’s pretty obvious that you’ll need something that won’t run out after a few sprays and can still maintain its quality months after. Some pepper sprays have an expiry date of 4 years and this kind might just be what you need.
Most importantly, we also took a look at the value of all of our products and compared it to see if its price are on par with its ingredients. This is because the price of a product does not mean it is better than one with a lesser price. You must also consider the feature of the product, ease of use, and its durability as a low priced spray can also give you this.
Keep the following in mind while using your pepper spray.
- In some countries, the legal age for owning a pepper spray is 14 to 21 years old.
- It is illegal to carry a pepper spray in checked baggage on most airlines, but if it is allowed, ensure that a safety mechanism has been put in place to avoid any accidental discharge.
- On accidental exposure to pepper spray, moving to an environment with clean air is good, but taped gauze slathered with burn cream is not.
- Don’t forget that the more you discharge a pepper spray for practice purposes, you are actually reducing the quantity for actual emergencies.
- The law for pepper spray ownership varies from State to State, thus, be informed before using a pepper spray in a new environment.
- Pepper spray training courses are offered by some private security companies to educate and familiarize their employees on how to unlock the pepper spray’s safety lock in case of an emergency.
- In some countries, non-felons over the legal age can use small amounts of pepper spray that is not over three-quarters of an ounce of the chemical compound.
- Pepper sprays that do not exceed a maximum of 2 ounces of the chemical can be carried in public or concealed even without a permit in certain countries.
It’s a dangerous world out there; as a consequence, your security should be your utmost priority. The best pepper spray with high-quality ingredients, ease of usage, and durability can give you that sense of security within and outside your home while at the same time help you to defend yourself if need be.
So, with this well-researched review of the 10 best pepper sprays available in the market, take the next step and acquire one for yourself and your family.