Tips when buying Body Armour

Body armour has come a long way in meeting the needs of today’s world. Most modern soft body armour manufacturers have reputable products. Here are some tips to ensure the armour is going to do what you need it to do.

1. Buy a certified solution

Always check a seller is compliant or certified to the necessary standard, ensuring they have testing data from an independent laboratory to prove the armour is fit for purpose. Body armour and ballistic products tested to the standards are often just as good as those certified.

2. Never buy a used vest

In the body armour industry buying a pre-owned vest is risky. Body armour is made of materials that over time degrade and will degrade at different rates subject to environmental conditions and use. The vest will naturally lose its ballistic properties. Because it is difficult to know how a vest has been treated, what is has been subjected to, and what level of protection it is still able to protect the risk is enormous to the wearer, lives are put at risk every day to save on cost. Manufacturer’s details are normally removed to ensure confidentiality removing any records of age, tracking numbers and protection. Check the description and if in doubt consult the vendor to ensure the vest and soft armour panels are brand new.

3. Are you insured?

Every body armour manufacturer or supplier should be able to provide a copy of their product liability insurance. This ensures that in the event the armour fails and causes serious injury that a claim can be made. It is important to ensure the insurance covers body armour, as PPE can just mean a baseball cap or high visibility jacket and not mean body armour.

4. Be sure of quality

Today, body armour is safer and lighter than ever. As this is designed to protect your life, you want to make sure it does the job. Cheaper prices do not always mean better value. With body armour you do get what you pay for. Lower prices can often mean a lower quality product which may not last the length of the guarantee period or have poor quality fixtures and fittings which could fail during a combat situation.

5. Like for like

In some situations, a lower price or weight can be reflected in the product received. Smaller internal panels or tapered reduced edge to edge protection can often leave the wearer under protected, or unaware they are not fully covered. It is important to ensure the products being compared are of the same size, coverage, and protection level to avoid disappointment.