Things to Consider When Choosing Body Armor

If you’re looking to buy body armor to ensure your safety, it’s important to make the right choice. Body armors are available in several different shapes and sizes. The different types of body armor offer different levels of protection. The availability of so many options makes it confusing to pick the right body armor that suits your specific needs. Whether you call it ‘body armor’ or ‘bulletproof vest’, the purpose of all tactical gear is to provide protection against bullet shots and other sharp objects like a knife. Body armor comes in the form of a bulletproof vest, helmets, leg or groin protection, and armor plates. This means that picking the right type of body armor depends on your specific safety threats.

To begin with, you need to choose between the two most common types of armor- soft armor and hard armor. Soft armor is typically concealable armor, such as vests worn underneath clothing to prevent a bullet from penetrating. Hard armor is comparatively harder and thicker because it is made from steel or ceramic material. You need to consider the pros and cons of each option to decide which one works best for you. Whether you choose soft inserts or ceramic plates, it’s crucial to invest in the right body armor for your needs. Besides the types of armor, other factors that you need to consider are your threat levels and certification. Now, let’s check out things to consider when choosing body armor.

Types of Vests

As mentioned above, you need to first think about the type of body armor you need. Bullet-proof vests are mainly f two types- Covert and Overt. Also known as soft and hard armor, this categorization is based on how the vest is worn. Covert vests are worn under your clothes, while overt is worn over clothes. Overt vests are commonly used by police officers and military personnel. Covert vests are soft and light-weight. Unlike overt vests that are made of heavy metal, these consist of fabric to ensure the comfort of the wearer. These are mostly preferred by high-profile politicians or undercover professionals.

Threat Levels

Once you figure out whether you want hard or soft body armor, the next most important consideration is to determine your threat level. Whether you choose hard or soft armor, make sure it meets your protection needs. Different body armors are designed to sustain a certain level of assault and calibers of bullets. Determining threat level means finding out the protection level of the armor based on the caliber and velocity of the projectile. When checking threat level, you find armor ranking such as IIA, II, IIIA, III, IV, or more. Each level defines the level of protection gear offers. Typically, increasing ranking indicates t higher-level threats than the previous one.


Different countries have different organizations that certify ballistic armor. You need to check which organization is responsible for certifying and setting ballistic armor standards in your region. These institutions conduct testing on the armor products submitted by armor manufacturers to determine their quality and threat level. They check both soft and hard armor products in water, high-humidity/high-heat, and other adverse conditions before providing them certification.