Being the victim of a crime is never a pleasant thought. But for 21 out of every 1000 people in the US per year, being the victim of a violent crime becomes a reality.
But you don't have to just 'hope' a criminal never targets you. There are plenty of steps you can take to protect yourself. Choose carefully where you go, at what time of the day, and with whom.
And for those moments that are simply unavoidable, you can carry a weapon.
The idea of carrying a gun may be distasteful to you for any one of a number of reasons. But there are plenty of options out there for non-lethal self-defense weapons.
Here are 5 of our favorite options.
This rechargeable Runt stun gun is one of our most popular products, and with good reason. At 20,000,000 Volts this little beauty packs quite a punch! Believe us when we say that your attacker will definitely rethink his life choices after coming into contact with this baby.
Like many stun guns, this model comes with a handy built-in flashlight. This makes it useful for more than just self-defense. Alternatively, you can use the flashlight to blind an attacker as well in some situations.
A stun gun is an excellent option for self-defense for both men and women. It is small and therefore easy to carry around. It doesn't require any strength to use it. Plus, you can put your attacker down for enough time that you can get away without having to use deadly force.
You may be wondering what happens if you freeze up and the attacker manages to get the stun gun away from you. Many stun guns have special protections against this.
For example, the Runt stun gun we mentioned features a wrist strap with a pin that goes into the stun gun. The pin must be in place for the stun gun to work. If you're wearing the strap when the attacker takes the gun away from you it will pull the pin and render the gun useless in your attacker's hand.
Pepper spray is another great self-defense tool that packs a punch. Pepper spray is so-called because it is literally made of oleoresin capsicum (capsaicin), the ingredient in Cayenne peppers that makes them hot. This is mixed with oil or water and pressurized and ready to be released in the face of an attacker.
If you've ever touched Cayenne peppers with your bare hands, you know how powerful the effects can be. Now imagine having that sprayed directly in your face. Your attacker will not be a happy camper.
Because the spray comes out as a mist and the wind can blow it around, it is possible to feel some of the effects yourself. Be prepared for that and have your escape plan already in mind before deploying the spray so you won't need to see super well.
Also, if you plan on carrying pepper spray for self-defense check your state laws. Most states restrict the size and concentration of capsaicin that you can use as a civilian.
This is for your protection from blowback and peace of mind. Pepper spray with a high concentration of capsaicin is capable of killing a person depending on how it is used.
A good tactical flashlight is less common but still a great self-defense tool. It's easy to conceal because it looks like a regular flashlight. A tactical flashlight, however, is bright enough to temporarily blind an assailant.
Some models also come with secondary defense features you can fall back on if the light isn't enough. The flashlight may feature a jagged edge that you can use as a stabbing weapon.
And many models, like this one, carry a concealed stun gun within the flashlight. If blinding your attacker doesn't work, a nice zap from the 9,000,000 Volt stun gun should do the trick.
If you don't even like the idea of causing pain to your attacker, you can carry an alarm instead. You can get handy keychain ones that make it easy to keep with you at all times.
When triggered, the alarm sends out a piercing screech that may scare off your attacker as well as draw attention of passersby. Many models come with a backup whistle in case the batteries fail for whatever reason.
In a few instances, the sound alone may be enough to scare off your attacker. But you can't really rely on that.
The main purpose that the alarm serves is to draw attention. But that means there need to be not only people around but also people that are willing to help. This will not always be the case and it's a good idea to have a more hefty weapon on hand as well.
One of the downfalls of most self-defense weapons is that you have to remember to carry it with you. But what is something you will always have with you anyway?
Your cell phone.
You can install an app on your phone, like PANIK, that you can activate at a moment's notice. Like the alarm, the idea is to make noise and draw attention to what is going on. Additionally, you can set up PANIK to send out an alert on your social media to tell your friends that you need help.
However, also like the alarm, you're having to rely on other people to react and come to your aid. Depending on the situation, that may not be a feasible means of defense.
Not all non-lethal self-defense weapons are equal. A stun gun may work better for one person while another may prefer pepper spray.
It doesn't really matter as each has their pros and cons. What's important is that you choose the weapon that will work best for you. It needs to be the one that you will remember to carry and feel comfortable using.
For more advice about other great self-defense and security options, be sure to check out our blog!
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