Many people assume all armor is heavy and bulky like the gear used by military personnel and SWAT, but that’s not true anymore. There are lots of great options in the Bulletproof Zone catalog that can fit your everyday lifestyle and help you survive a potentially life-threatening injury as a veteran or regular civilian.
In this article, we’re going to recommend some effective bulletproof gear that won’t be a drag to wear on a daily basis.
The best part? They’re so lightweight and discreet that most people won’t even be able to tell you’re wearing body armor!
Should I buy body armor and wear it every day?
We say YES, but what type you need depends on your specific needs. Body armor offers vital defense in this unpredictable world, but not all types work for every individual.
Bulletproof vests or carriers with higher protection levels in the rifle-defeating range are vital for people like military personal, police officers, and security guards.
However, for average civilians or veterans who simply want protection in an emergency, they can be quite heavy and uncomfortable.
Aside from live active shooter situations, handgun rounds are a more common threat to you on a daily basis and lighter ballistic vests or carriers might be all you need.
Other civilians prefer to avoid bulletproof vests completely and opt instead for bulletproof clothing or other gear that will let you forget you’re wearing ballistic armor. The choices are many!
Great Body Armor for Everyday Use
Leatherback Gear is well-known for making some of the world’s safest backpacks. Their Civilian One backpack can be used with Level IIIA up to Level IV plates, the highest protection level available. It’s great for students and office workers who might find themselves in an enclosed space in a shooting.
It can be used as a shield for people to stand behind, and it even transforms into a protective vest.
- Tons of pockets and special compartments for laptop or tablet
- Zippers covered with fabric protection
- 35-liter bag that holds up to 300 lbs.
- Water-resistant fabric
- Transforms quickly into a full torso protective vest
BulletBlocker makes high-end protective clothing for civilians, police officers, and government officials who want something more discrete than a bulletproof vest.
The BulletBlocker Topcoat is one of the most reputable pieces of IIIA rated gear for civilians. It’s not only fashionable but suitable for any environment or occasion.
- Comes with removable bulletproof panels
- Lots of options for size and color
- Weighs less than 10 lbs. and remains breathable in hot weather
- Made of wool and cashmere
For civilians who want to buy something that fits in more with socially acceptable attire, Innocent Armor’s leather jackets fit the bill. Innocent Armor is the only body armor company in the world to use FitTech technology, which allows their clothing to conform to each person’s body shape.
All of their products are made in the USA, and there is also a leather jacket available for women.
- Made of premium sheepskin leather
- Comes with ShieldTech protection that is NIJ certified up to IIIA
- Offers full protection on front and back
A plate carrier is essential for any civilian or pro who regularly uses firearms. The Banshee plate carriers are Shellback Tactical’s most famous ballistic vests, and they’re used by professionals like first responders and law enforcement around the world.
The Banshee 2.0 is one of their most popular plate carriers due to its price point and being both lightweight and modulable.
- Weighs just over 3 lbs. without armor panel or plates
- Comes in multiple colors including Multicam
- Made of 500D Cordura and features great stitchwork
- Fully adjustable straps and MOLLE webbing
- Adjustable/removable shoulder pads
SafeGuard Armor makes high-quality gear with tons of customization options. The SafeGuard Armor Stealth Concealed Bulletproof Vest costs less than $500 by itself, but there are multiple upgrade options including ballistic level, edged blade, and spike protection.
Their bulletproof vests and plate carriers are all made in the USA.
- Many options for color, size, and length
- Weighs just 5.5 lbs. and contains a CoolMax lining for keeping you cool
- Vests can be used by men or women
- Lightweight and concealable
- Optional ballistic and stab proof upgrades
Is body armor really bulletproof?
There isn’t such a thing as truly bulletproof armor: it is actually bullet resistant.
No bulletproof vest or other gear can truly protect you from every bullet, but Level II to Level IIIA options for civilians do a good job of stopping handgun rounds, which civilians are more likely to come into contact with.
Is it legal to wear body armor in public?
There is no simple yes or no answer to this question, but it is generally legal to purchase body armor.
In certain states like Connecticut, it is limited to face-to-face purchases, and federal law does not allow convicted felons to own or buy body armor.
Wearing armor in public is generally acceptable, though wearing heavy-duty armor like a plate carrier could draw attention and potentially cause people to confuse you with a criminal. It’s more advisable to walk around with protective clothing, backpacks, or concealable bulletproof vests and keep the heavier armor close by.
We’ve got a convenient state-by-state guide list to check out before you buy so you can stay on top of the laws in your state.
For some people, a bulletproof vest is perfect for daily wear. For others, especially civilians who are more concerned about convenience, comfort, and discretion, options like armored backpacks and bulletproof clothing are a better choice.
And then there are people who prefer both a bulletproof vest and an extra piece of gear to further increase their level of protection.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution, so analyze your life and think about the risk factors you face and the level of protection that might mitigate them.
How often do you wear body armor, and what works for you? Let us know in a comment below.