As the great Will Smith once said: If you stay ready, you don’t need to get ready. The goal of being prepared for self-defense is to integrate tools and protective measures into your daily schedule without creating a state of perpetual panic. With that in mind, it’s worth the investment to always be prepared. Save your guns for your hunting trips and your Hattori Hanzo sword for the living room display, because your arsenal of self-defense tools should be easy to carry and non-lethal. The best self-defense weapons we’ve compiled are discreet, are below $35, and are proven to be effective.
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As with any weapon, take time to learn how to use it. YouTube has tutorials for everything these days. If you want to really get into Patrick-Swayze-in-Road-House shape, take a local self-defense class and show no fear; non-verbal cues of confidence go a long way.
Stun Gun: Guard Dog Diablo II Tactical Stun Gun Flashlight
Part 320-lumen flashlight, part 5 million-volt stun gun, the Guard Dog Diablo II is a multi-functional defense tool with solid (we mean solid) stopping power. For a stun gun to be effective, it should deliver at least 1 million volts, says Top Stun Guns. This one is concealed within an aircraft-grade aluminum alloy body that is shockproof for the user. An emergency glass breaker bezel rounds out the specs. For $33, it’s a powerful yet not-too-crazy self-defense weapon that you won’t have to replace, thanks to the built-in rechargeable battery. But don’t be fooled — this is still a powerful weapon that requires training.
Pepper Spray: Sabre 3-in-1 Pepper Spray with Key Ring
With a formula that includes CS tear gas plus UV-marking dye to aid in suspect identification, Sabre’s 3-in-1 Pepper Spray packs maximum strength in a small bottle and is used by law enforcement across the U.S. The 10-foot range is good for 25 bursts, which is about five times more than other brands, according to Sabre. The keyring makes it easy to carry and a locking top protects from accidental discharges. Sabre uses military-grade tear gas for its pepper spray but steers clear of CN tear gas, which can burn the skin and eyes.
Biker Whip: Fast Strike Biker Whip
Indiana Jones had the right idea carrying a whip. The non-lethal striking force of this Fast Strike Biker Whip was designed for quick, easy use and, most importantly, it’s lightweight to carry and easy to conceal. Some dudes wear it like a belt on their jeans. Reaching 17-inches long, this whip was inspired by the self-defense whips used by motorcyclists. The flexible stainless steel whip is strong enough to break windows and malleable enough to curl in a pocket. Honestly, we prefer this to a gnarly baton which, used incorrectly, could cause irreparable damage.
Keychain Kubotan: Tactical Pointed Tip Grooved Grip Kubotan
While the Kubotan looks like a gnarly vampire stake, it has a slew of non-lethal uses for self-defense. Attach this lightweight aluminum stick to your keys for simple carry and, in the event of an attack, you can do one of the following: Grip it to harden your fist for punching, use as a flailing weapon and whip your keys at the attacker, or take the Kubotan and strike your assailant’s hands and joints. In self-defense, it’s best to go for sensitive parts if accessible, like the bridge of the nose, shins, or knuckles. A well-placed strike can break bones.
Keychain Knuckles: Brutus Bulldog Self-Defense Keychain Knuckle Weapon
The goal is to make self-defense accessible while not worrying yourself sick about what could happen. Set out for a warm-weather run or night-time dog walk with only your music and keys knowing if you tread into the wrong area you’ll be protected. Disguised as a bulldog keychain, the Brutus Bulldog Self-Defense Knuckle Weapon becomes a spiked accessory fitting around your knuckles, made to strike an oncoming assailant and pierce the skin. The ABS molded plastic is said to be unbreakable. Cat/dog ear weapons are not legal in states that do not permit brass knuckles.
Horn: Sabre Sport and Safety Horn
We’re not joking. Get a horn. Audible over a half-mile away, this compact horn fits in your car door (it’s only 4.75 inches tall) and is incredibly loud. This noise could startle an aggressor and make them flee. Sabre says the alarm also reduces the risk of bear attacks while hiking and camping and that periodic blasts can alert bears you’re in the area thereby decreasing surprised and aggressive behavior. An easy-to-use button makes firing simple.
Door Stop Alarm: GE Personal Security Door Stop Alarm
Technically speaking, a door alarm isn’t a weapon. However, it’s still an essential tool to have in self-defense. This door stop alarm by GE can be easily used at home, and even brought during your travels. When the alarm is activated, 120-decibel alarm sounds will be blaring to alert you to safety and kick out possible intruders. If you’re the type of man who finds himself traveling often or ends up staying the night in a sketchy place, this door stop alarm is a must-have.
Your Body: Marine Martial Arts App
Every time you start checking a social media app or your fantasy baseball team on your phone, open the Marine Martial Arts app for a quick training session in close combat. With hundreds of pages of content, this portable training manual is instructive, simple, and includes both hand-to-hand and hand-to-weapon tips. Ask your S.O. or roommate to practice before dinner to help you get the moves down.
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