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The Truth About Stab Proof Clothing

stab proof clothing

Everywhere you turn you see bulletproof clothing, so why isn’t there just as many options for slash and stab proof clothing? 

The difference between stab proof and bulletproof clothing (besides one stops bullets and the other stops knives…)

Ballistic Resistant Armor (Bulletproof) is meant to STOP energy of the bullet.
Stab Resistant Armor is meant to catch and entangle the blade.

Both can use the same material (kevlar, twaron or something similar)  but they are constructed differently. Ballistic Resistant Armor is made to STOP any penetration and spread it out over the surface while Stab Resistant Armor is designed to allow some penetration and then entangle the weapon. 

Can they be interchangeable? NO.

Ballistic Armor is meant to STOP penetration  while Stab Resistant Armor allows for penetration…which is something you DON’T want to do with a bullet.

Stab Resistant Armor can’t stop bullets but Ballistic Resistant Armor may stop some stabs…but a lot can vary. Plus the higher your ballistic protection the more stabs it will resist.

I should point out that ballistic plates stop all everything so we’re really talking about soft armor – levels 2A, 2, 3A and 3.

The real question is, what are you going to face in the street? 

In 2016, 10,818 people were killed violently by firearms compared to 1,604 killed by knives and “other cutting instruments” DATA SHEET HERE <<<

So you’re almost 7 times more likely to get killed by a firearm than a knife. 

You should also know, that while mass murder with assault weapons makes the news…HANDGUNS are by far (over 90%) are used in murders involving a firearm.

What is “certified” vs What will actually stop a stab or a slash. 

National Institute of Justice (NIJ) sets the spike or stab maximum penetration depth at 7mm (0.28″) from a thrust at a 90 degree angle (perpendicular) to the protective material.

In order for ANYTHING to be considered stab proof it MUST be certified by a laboratory. Not by some guy on youtube. 

Make sure you see an actual certification somewhere from an NIJ approved lab.

The reality of a knife attacks and other edged weapons.

Stabs kill, slashes don’t and you will most likely die from loss of blood. Depending on where you get stabbed depends on how long it will take but you will not get killed instantly from an edged weapon.


Here’s a quick video about knife attacks to give you some perspective. 

The reality is this, in a fight, you’re not going to just stand still and let the guy stab you. Hopefully you will be moving, reacting and attacking.

In the context of moving and attacking most ballistic armor will provide some protection, and the higher the armor, the more the protection.

The NIJ tests are conducted on a static objects with 17.7 to 49 ft /lbs of force. This is the optimal situation for a stab but it’s not real. 

So even with ballistic armor against a knife wielding attacker your chances are pretty darn good.

At the end of the day, if statistically you’re going to face edged weapons, make sure you dress for the occasion. 

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