Best Body Armor

The 5 Best Body Armor Available

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Currently, looking for the best body armor to meet your requirements? For this review, we’ve tried on a variety of body armor and examined how each one differs in terms of flexibility, quality, and durability. As a result, we’ve come up with these five options that we believe can provide adequate protection against penetrative threats, accidents, and other assaults.

For the best body armor, we’ve got amazing choices for you. These include:

Spartan Armor Systems Level III Elaphros
  • Ultrahigh molecular weight Polyethylene (UHMWPE) hybrid fibers
  • Multishot rated
  • Standalone armor system
  • Stab-resistant
  • Spartan embossed logo may not be to your fancy
$682 Shop NowClick to read my review
AR500 Armor Testudo Gen 2 Plate Carrier
  • Optimal fit for body types medium to 2XL
  • Built-in cummerbund with side plate pouches
  • Maximum protection and load-bearing carrier
  • Flexible in sizing
  • Cordura 500D nylon
  • 3D wedding can cause irritation through thin undershirts
$170 Shop NowClick to read my review
Voodoo Tactical Level IIIA Ballistic Body Armor
  • Made of lightweight, durable polyurethane
  • Includes front, back, and side soft armor plates
  • Tested to block pistol rounds up to .357 SIG or .44 Magnum
  • Tested to Level IIIA NIJ 0101.06 standards
  • A bit pricey
$332 Shop NowClick to read my review
AR500 Veritas Modular Plate Carrier
  • Constructed with 500D Cordura nylon
  • Carrier alone weighs only 3.5 lbs
  • Compatible with cummerbund, side plate pockets, and adaptive plate
  • Rugged adjustable and removable side buckles
  • Poor stability of the side straps
$93 Shop NowClick to read my review
Condor Specter Plate Carrier
  • Low profile, lightweight
  • Made of 4-way stretch heavy-duty nylon
  • Elastic Cummerbund with integrated magazine, radio holder
  • Accepts hard ballistic plates up to Level 3A
  • Armor not included
$98 Shop NowClick to read my review

Before diving into what these five best body armors have to offer, let’s go over some background information about body armor in general.

Best Body Armor
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Will I Become Bulletproof?

Body armor provides excellent protection, but it cannot defend you against all threats. Also, there is no such thing as bulletproof armor. As a result, you must continue to be attentive to your own safety by acting appropriately. The risks you incur when you don’t have your armor on are still high when you do. Always exercise extreme caution.

Is Body Armor Stab-Proof As Well?

Body armor layers are consist of ballistic nylon, kevlar, and other materials. Level III and IV armor can prevent a knife. Although Level IIA, Level II, and Level IIIA body armor can provide some protection against edged and spiked weapons, they are not built for it.

It’s impossible to stay safe from the dangers posed by various weapons. In reality, wearing body armor protection is the only way to protect yourself and your loved ones from bullets flying from points known or unknown. Safety first is a prevalent motto for most people, so body armor is worth the investment. This is because we never know what will happen at any given moment, so it is best to be ready at all times. 

Material Used

There are a variety of materials used in manufacturing body armor.

  • Kevlar: It is the most preferred material used for body armor, because it is durable, flexible, and comfortable.
  • Polyethylene: It is efficient against the friction induced by a bullet’s spin. The bullet is melted and absorbed by this material. It is also light and comfortable to wear.
  • Steel: Is another popular option for hard armor, Steel is still used in the production of body armor today, mostly for ballistic armor plates. It’s utilized to make hefty and affordable armor.
  • Ceramic: Are lighter than steel plates and significantly less expensive than PE plates. They’re also known as hard body armor, and in some situations, they’ll provide the same level of protection as steel plates.

Learn about the different types of materials then choose the body armor that fits your requirements best. Despite the fact that each material has its own set of advantages and downsides.

The Factors to Consider When Choosing the Best Body Armor

  • Proper fit: Body armor can only provide proper protection when worn correctly. The ideal fit for body armor is from the top of your torso to a few inches above your waistline. No matter what posture you’re in, it should be comfortable.
  • Concealment: Upon concealing body armor, determine whether your vest should be overt or concealable, based on your job and circumstances. The most notable distinction is that concealable body armor use moisture-absorbent cloth. As a result, you can wear it under your clothes. On the other hand, you can wear the overt body armor over your clothes due to its weight and size.
  • Expected threat: Assessing the threat level means predicting what kinds of weaponry an attacker will use against you.

Soft and hard body armor are the two types of body armor available:

  • Soft body armor: You can use this style to block most handgun and shotgun rounds. The materials are bullet-resistant fibers like Kevlar, Twaron, or Dyneema. Soft armor comes in the form of full vests or soft insert plates for use in plate carriers, backpacks, and other gear.
  • Hard armor: This style is heavy and made of hard ceramic or metal plates that go into a plate carrier. This gives them a higher level of protection than soft armor but at the cost of increased weight.

Armor Levels

The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) developed body armor performance testing and a proofing standard that categorizes all body armor into different categories of protection. 

Soft armor levels:

NIJ Level IIA: It is the lightest soft body armor on the market today, and it protects against most pistol cartridges. IIA guards against the following threats:

  • 9x19mm, 124-grain FMJ-RN, 1,225 ft/s
  • .40 S&W, 180-grain FMJ, 1,155 ft/s
  • .45 ACP, 230-grain FMJ, 900 ft/s
  • All Level I threats

NIJ Level II: It protects against high-velocity handgun rounds and is a little heavier than IIA. The threats against which Level II is rated are as follows:

  • 9x19mm +P, 124-grain FMJ, 1,305 ft/s
  • .357 Magnum, 158-grain JSP, 1,430 ft/s
  • All Levels I and IIA threats

NIJ Level IIIA: It is the heaviest sort of soft body armor currently available, and it is frequently worn by law enforcement and security professionals. The threats against which Level IIIA is rated are as follows:

  • .357 SIG, 125-grain FMJ-FN, 1,470 ft/s
  • .44 Magnum, 240-grain SJHP, 1,430 ft/s
  • All Levels I, IIA, and II threats

Hard armor levels:

NIJ Level III: This level also protects against most 7.62x39mm bullets (AK-47 ammunition) and commercial .223 Remington FMJ and JHP ammunition. This level is rated to protect against the following threats:

  • 7.62x51mm NATO, M80 ball, 148-grain FMJ, 2,780 ft/s
  • All soft body armor threats

Level III+: It offers more protection than regular Level III without becoming as heavy as Level IV. This degree of protection refers to armor that can withstand 5.56mm M855 and other small-caliber, high-velocity bullets, which can penetrate Level III armor.

  • Use the Typical Level III+ armor to protect against 5.56mm M855/SS109 green tip (62-grain FMJ at around 3,000 ft/s)

NIJ Level IV: They’re the heaviest and most robust of the bunch. Its purpose is to stop full-size rifle bullets from piercing the armor. This level guard against the following threats::

  • .30-06 Springfield, M2, 166-grain armor-piercing, 2,880 ft/s
  • All Level III threats
  • All soft body armor threats

Our Top 5 Body Armor Picks

Spartan Armor Systems Level III Elaphros 

This body armor is for individuals who demand comprehensive protection over long distances. It weighs only 3.5 pounds and has a low-profile design that allows those wearing it to have optimum mobility and comfort. It has also been lab-tested and verified to meet or exceed NIJ-0101.06 requirements for the ballistic resistance of body armor.

The Elaphros Level III Body Armor Plates are coated, or encapsulated, with Spartan Armor Systems proprietary ”Encapsaloc” Polyurea Coating. The plate shield against water, pollutants, and everyday wear and tear.

It has the advantage of being both durable and lightweight, making it convenient to use while providing the necessary protection you need. It’s also ideal for dealing with high-velocity threats while avoiding excessive stress on the armor plate.

Pros
  • Durable and lightweight
  • Polyurea coating
  • Level III NIJ rating
  • Neutrally buoyant
  • Stab-resistant
  • Made in the United States
  • Cost-effective
Cons
  • The Spartan embossed logo may not be to your fancy

AR500 Armor Testudo Gen 2 Plate Carrier

The Testudo Gen 2 Plate Carrier offers maximum coverage and load-bearing capability. It can support both standard 10 inches by 12 inches ballistic plates as well as the larger 11 inches by 14 inches plates. It has a fully adjustable cummerbund and shoulder straps. This makes this item versatile enough for medium to large body types.

There’s also a 3D mesh inner lining, adjustable shoulder straps, and shoulder padding for extra comfort. The built-in inner plate retention straps keep the plate in place as does the Cordura 500D nylon material utilized in the construction.

It’s a good investment because the price is affordable and yet the item can give excellent quality. Another advantage is that the plate carrier can accommodate a wide range of body types.

Pros
  • Cordura 500D nylon
  • Improved version
  • Affordable price tag
  • Flexible in sizing
Cons
  • 3D wedding can cause irritation through thin undershirts

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Voodoo Tactical Level IIIA Ballistic Body Armor

The Voodoo Tactical Level IIIA Ballistic Body Armor Vest is a complete body armor that includes front, back, and side soft armor plates. When it comes to the protection it can offer, the body armor vest has been tested to Level IIIA NIJ 0101.06 standards. It was also tested to block pistol rounds up to .357 SIG and .44 Magnum. As a result, you can rely on this body armor to save your life in any situation.

When it comes to range movement and comfort, this armor vest is excellent. Thanks to its lightweight polyurethane construction and ergonomic design. Because of the adjustable hook-and-loop, the fitting is simple to adjust. The best thing is that this tactical armor vest is assembled entirely in the United States.

If you need effective high-quality, life-saving gear, go with the Voodoo Tactical Level IIIA Ballistic Body Armor Vest. It’s a good choice for anyone looking for a little extra protection at a somewhat greater cost than the other low-cost options on our list.

Pros
  • Made of lightweight, durable polyurethane
  • Includes front, back, and side soft armor plates
  • Tested to block pistol rounds up to .357 SIG or .44 Magnum
  • Tested to Level IIIA NIJ 0101.06 standards
Cons
  • A bit pricey

AR500 Veritas Modular Plate Carrier

This body armor is a comfortable, well-ventilated, and lightweight plate carrier for heavy armor plates measuring 10 inches by 12 inches. The Low-profile design keeps you flexible in the field. The inside lining of each AR500 Armor Veritas Modular Plate Carrier Vest includes 3D mesh for enhanced breathability, and the 500D Cordura nylon structure can withstand wear and tear while on duty.

The two front admin pockets provide extra storage, while the Hypalon pull tabs are easy to grip and allow reliable access. In the lower Admin Pocket, you can also use the optional Kangaroo mag pouch system. The upper Admin Pocket has elastic dividers to keep your items organized.

The AR500 Armor Veritas is ideal for those searching for a plate carrier with a low profile. The Veritas, commonly known as “Truth,” is the smaller and more modular brother of the Testudo.

Pros
  • Durable
  • Comfortable to use
  • With ventilating 3D mesh inner lining
  • Rugged adjustable and removable side buckles
  • Cost-effective
Cons
  • Poor stability of the side straps

Condor Specter Plate Carrier

This body armor is made of a durable 4-way stretch nylon fabric for a flush fit and full range of motion. It features an elastic cummerbund with integrated magazine or radio pockets that is easy to put on and take off. There are loop ID panels on the front and back, as well as hook and loop identification patches.

When wearing most soft armor in the shooter cut configuration, you may easily conceal this armor beneath your jacket. This plate carrier is also ideal for personal use as well as for law enforcement. There are also two rows of laser-cut MOLLE slots on the front and back that can be used to attach matching pouches and attachments.

The Condor Specter Plate Carrier accepts hard ballistic plates up to Level 3A and soft armor but armor isn’t included. This carrier comes in two colors: gray and black, and it’s a perfect choice if you need functional tactical armor.

Pros
  • Low profile, lightweight
  • Made of 4-way stretch heavy-duty nylon
  • Elastic Cummerbund with integrated magazine, radio holder
  • Accepts hard ballistic plates up to Level 3A
Cons
  • Armor not included

Final Thoughts

We saw and discussed the different kinds of body armor as well as its distinct characteristics and features. If you are wondering which do we prefer? Our top pick would be the Voodoo Tactical Level IIIA Ballistic Body Armor Vest because it is durable, lightweight, and comfortable to wear. It also features a polyurethane coating. It makes the armor long-lasting, durable and cost-effective.

Above all, body armor could save your life in a dangerous situation. It is also one of the smartest investments you will ever have because it can provide you with safety regardless of where you are. Anything can happen at any given moment, so it’s always important to be ready and vigilant.

We hope that you find this information useful and that it allows you to choose the body armor to fit your needs best. Keep yourself safe out there!

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