Buying body armor is literally a life-or-death decision. Choosing the right type of armor could save your life and getting the wrong armor for your situation could lead to a severe injury (or worse).
You shouldn’t make such a major decision lightly. Before buying body armor, there are several factors you need to consider. There are a few ways to check to make sure that body armor provides the protection you need.
This article will cover the five main factors you’ll want to research before buying body armor.
1. Types of Body Armor
If you’re going to be wearing body armor, you need to know what style of armor works best for you. There are two main styles of body armor: non-plated and hard-plated.
Hard-plated armor uses literal plates (often ceramic) that can stop a bullet from penetrating further. This style of armor is most commonly worn by soldiers; it is heavy, but offers great protection.
Non-plated armor uses tightly woven fibers to dull the impact of items that come into contact with it. It’s less effective against bullets, but does well against knives and other weapons. It’s also much lighter.
Regardless of style, body armor can be made from various materials.
2. The Right Price
You don’t want to overpay for what you’re getting. That’s as true for body armor as it is for anything else. Comparing armor costs is an important step in choosing the right armor for you.
The price can vary quite a bit depending on what material is used and what style of armor you’re getting. Make sure you aren’t overcharged for the amount of protection you’re getting.
Also, if a price seems too good to be true, it probably is.
3. A Perfect Fit
You’ll likely be wearing your body armor quite a bit, so it’s important it fits you well. It’s not just a matter of comfort, either. Ill-fitting armor won’t protect you as well as it should.
Fitting for armor will ensure that the armor isn’t so loose that it won’t protect you, but isn’t so tight that it will restrict your movement. It’s a fine line, and straying too far in either direction could be dangerous.
4. Additional Features
There’s more to body armor than just the armor itself. Many armors come with extra body features such as neck braces, elbow pads, and more. These may not be vital, but they can be a nice bonus if you’re interested.
5. Proper Testing
Finally, make sure the armor has been rigorously tested. Testing body armor helps determine its protection level–in other words, what kind of weapons it can be expected to defend you from.
There are many levels of protection, starting at Level I and moving up to Level IV, with a few special categories thrown in, too.
The important thing is to check that the armor has been tested multiple times. Dragon Skin armor seemed promising at first, but it failed its second round of tests; thorough, so repeated testing is crucial!
Buying Body Armor That Suits You
It’s crucial to do your research before buying body armor. While there are practical considerations like cost and fitting, there are also important safety issues that you need to be aware of.
Wearing body armor isn’t the only way to improve your personal safety–there are lots of gadgets that can help you stay safe! Visit our tech blog to learn about some of them.