Pepper Spray Buyer's Guide

In this post, you’re going to get all the info you need on purchasing the right pepper spray for your requirements. Whether for professional or personal use, we give you the rundown on what to look for in a pepper spray and which pepper sprays are the best.

Let’s start with a brief history of the pepper spray.


  • 1

    What is the history of pepper sprays?

  • 2

    Why do I need a pepper spray?

  • 3

    What are the most commonly available pepper spray types?

  • 4

    What accessories I can get for a pepper spray?

  • 5

    What is the pepper spray rating system?

  • 6

    What are the legal implications of buying/owing a pepper spray?

  • 7

    What are the obsolete pepper sprays?

  • 8

    What are the top pepper spray options available?

  • 9

    How to make sure your pepper spray fits your requirements?

  • 10

    Are there any pepper spray tips available?

  • 11

    What are the frequently asked questions on pepper sprays?

History of Pepper Spray

The Aztecs -Although pepper spray has been in use for ages, science and technology have made a huge modification to the development of pepper spray. The chemical in pepper spray is gotten from red chili pepper. It was initially used in China and India as a weapon for self-defense.

The Aztecs discovered chilies in the wild and started cultivating them almost six thousand years ago. They used the peppers to put some flavor to their meals. Nevertheless, they found out other advantages as well. They used it as a medicine for a different sickness such as colds, asthma, pain relief and sore throats. The Aztecs also found out that if the hot peppers were burned, it could be used as a weapon of chemical warfare.

The Mayans - The Mayan Indians cultivated hot chili peppers and also used them to put flavor to food. Just as the Aztecs, they soon discovered that hot peppers had extra advantages. They also sought for a way to weaponize peppers and use it against their enemies. When fighting wars, the Mayans burned a considerable amount of hot chili peppers. The resulting smoke gave off a huge amount of capsaicin into the air which caused a smoky, misty, haze that stung the eyes and penetrated the skin of their enemies.

The Modern Pepper Spray - Irrespective of the brand, the active compounds in every pepper spray are generally called Capsaicinoids. They are usually denoted using the military symbol OC, which signifies “oleoresin capsicum”. The most essential chemical in an OC is the capsaicin. This is gotten from chilli peppers in a chemical process that liquefies and concentrates it into a liquid.


There are various applications of a pepper spray for self defense. A few applications have been detailed below:

Police Applications - Pepper spray is a nontoxic personal safety kit that can assist you in being you know that merely having pepper spray in your hand can wade off a potential attacker? Regardless of where the dangers are coming from, pepper spray is a great potent inhibitor that gives rapid results. In fact, you can spray some pepper sprays about six feet away. That space provides you with an incredible edge. It affords you a chance to leave the situation and go to a safe place.

A pepper spray in your hands is an indication that you are ever-ready. Why do you have to walk around scared with a mindset that dangers are lurking around everywhere? You are knowing fully well that dangerous situations happen unexpectedly. A pepper spray in your hands can be your protective shield. This way, you are not only prepared, but you are also able to enjoy your life with less worry.

Women's Personal Safety Applications - Do you know that there are some pepper sprays that you can put on your keychain, in your bag, or purse? In fact, there are some that you can even put in your pocket. It’s simple to use whenever you need it. With pepper spray in your hands, you can go about your daily duties confidently while boosting your personal safety.

Postal Worker Personal Safety Applications - Postal workers make use of pepper sprays to save themselves from dog attacks. Joggers and Senior Citizens use pepper sprays to save themselves from vulnerable situations The police and military can also make use of pepper spray in combat situations.

Camping Safety Applications - It is used particularly in life-threatening circumstances. Hunters and campers in the wild can also use pepper spray to protect themselves from bear attacks.

Police Applications

Women Safety Applications

Postal Worker Personal Safety Applications

Camping Safety Applications


There are a wide variety of pepper sprays available in the market and here are some of the best mentioned below for your convenience:

Mace Police Model Triple Action

Mace Police Model Triple Action is a small and lightweight pepper spray such that you can even carry it by hand or inside your pocket easily. This is particularly useful for sportspeople and people who do not love to move around with bags. They will surely find this pepper spray valuable for them. Interestingly, this pepper spray can be used at least ten times which is a good start for small stuff like this.

Police Strength 23 Pepper Spray 1/2 oz Flip Top

This is one of the hottest formulas available. It sprays to a larger distance and the newly designed flip top is more secured to use. It has an attached key ring which makes it possible for fast access in case of an emergency.

Police Strength Streetwise 23 Pepper Spray 3 oz FIRE MASTER

It is ideal for carrying with you when camping, hiking or when going into town. It will create a fog of pepper spray which makes it impossible to miss your attacker. It also comes with a safety lock.


SABRE SPRAY POCKET UNIT W/CLIP .75OZ has a very aesthetic packaging. It is a good quality product. It’s extra-ordinary benefits further makes for its unique selling point. The minimum storage space it requires is what makes it an ideal choice.


Actually there are special accessories for a pepper spray other than the pouches some people prefer to buy.


Heat Units

You need to understand that different pepper sprays are produced for different purposes. This is because different pepper spray producers make use of various chemical formulas gotten from various varieties of hot peppers. The general rating system of a pepper spray is typically evaluated in Scoville Heat Units (SHU). This yardstick offers valuable detail on the total stopping power of pepper spray. The SHU rating is a vital consideration. This is because the greater the rating, the more incapacitating the spray works.


Another common pepper spray rating system used is accuracy. The pepper spray is often released out of the nozzle like a wind-resistant stream rather than an aerosol mist. Hence, it is less about the user’s precision. Nevertheless, the user should be able to produce the canister, focus the nozzle at the face of the assailant while releasing the spray with caution. Some pepper spray canisters make this action simpler than others, especially pistol grips.


It is a criminal offense to carry/transport pepper spray on a commercial airliner or possess it beyond the security metal detectors at the airport. Pepper spray can be used in the workplace, but a pepper spray Safety Data Sheet must be given to every employee. In the United States of America, pepper spray can be legally purchased and carried in all 50 states especially in Texas, New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin. Some states control the maximum permitted strength of the pepper spray, age restriction, content as well as the usage.

In California, the pepper spray and Mace programs is currently deregulated. Consumers will no longer be need to have the training, and a certificate is no longer needed to buy or possess a pepper spray. Pepper spray and Mace are available through gun shops, sporting goods stores, and other business outlets. Some persons are still prohibited from possessing pepper spray, especially minors under the age of 16, convicted felons, individuals convicted of certain drug offenses, individuals convicted of assault, and individuals convicted of misusing pepper spray.

In Massachusetts legislations allow residents to purchase pepper spray without a Firearms Identification Card. In Florida, pepper spray is classified as “self-defense chemical spray” and therefore not considered a weapon under Florida law. The Michigan law permits “considerable use” of spray containing not more than 18% oleoresin capsicum to protect “a person or property under circumstances that would justify the person’s use of physical force”.


Like most aerosol products, expired pepper spray loses its chemical potency and dispensing pressure after some time. It will still work, but not as effective as before its expiration. There is a large possibility that using expired pepper spray cannot ward off an attacker as intended. In fact, any pepper spray that you do not use after two years should be replaced with a new one. This will ensue that you have a potent pepper spray to use you face an attacker.

How to handle an expired pepper spray?

  • Empty the container at home and dump the can into the trash.
  • Put the pepper spray inside a zip-lock bag and throw it into the trash.
  • Contact your local waste disposal service for safe disposal.
  • You should not dump pepper spray directly into the trash. This is because an obsolete pepper spray is combustible, ignitable, reactive, toxic, and corrosive.
  • Unused pepper spray more than 18 months has to be discarded and replaced by a new one.


As a result of its use and effects, different pepper spray producing companies have innovated diverse top pepper spray brands. Every brand has its significance. Pepper sprays have different varieties. This is why you should know what you really want. For instance, the Sabre Red Pepper gel is one of the best brands of pepper spray. This is because of its recent latest creativity in self-defense, which has to do with branding it in gel form. This kind of pepper spray will probably not affect the user, unlike others. The protection provides the user makes it a great choice, alongside the fact that it is simpler to aim.

Mace Pepper Spray

Mace pepper spray is a great choice for protection. The colors selected for these sprays are aesthetically made. It acts as protection against several attacks. It is made in a fashionable package that makes it look pleasing look when in use. The product design of the Mace Pepper Spray was uniquely constructed to reduce the probability of accidental discharge and to make sure that the minimal effort of the user is sufficient enough to offer a remarkable result. It is also made with a movable hand strap that makes sure that the users are convenient when carrying it. The Mace Pepper Spray has an effect on the respiratory system, and it results in blurred visions as well as pain on the skin of the assailant. It also has a UV dye that leaves a residue to help the investigation.

Police Strength Pepper Spray

The main constituent in police strength pepper spray is the Oleoresin capsicum (OC). It is the oil that is gotten from the placenta near the stem of the pepper. Although OC is an active ingredient, it does not affect the potency of the spray. It only shows the amount of pepper. The estimate of the potency of a pepper spray is affected by the degree of capsaicinoids present. The strongest capsaicinoid, capsaicin, are used to estimate its potency. The amount of capsaicinoids specified for policemen and soldiers is between 0.18 - 1.33%. While for bears, the sprays should range between 1 - 2%.

Sabre Pepper Spray

Sabre pepper spray is a great choice for self-defense against numerous threats and dangers. When released, it can cover a distance of twelve feet. It gives users a great chance to avoid dangerous situations. There is also a UV marking dye to assist the law enforcement authorities in their investigation and recognition of assailants. It can be used numerous times, and it is simpler to use. Users should make sure that it is readily available and accessible. This is a very reliable pepper spray company due to the durability of its products. The products have up to two years’ lifespan average.

Wildfire pepper spray brand

For Wildfire Brand OC Spray has one of the purest grade oleoresin capsicum formulas in a defensive spray. The newly made formula makes it one of the hottest pepper sprays available. This particular brand of self-defense spray is produced in the same lab as the ones that the law enforcement agencies carry.


We have different pepper sprays that serve different purposes. All pepper sprays are not the same. This is because OC (oleoresin capsicum) is a resinous extract taken from the different capsicum peppers. depending on your individual situation, pepper spray is an excellent choice as a self-defense tool. A general requirement for choosing a pepper spray is that it must be easy to carry and use. It must also be able to render your attackers and assailant powerless so that you can always feel protected and powerful. Modern pepper sprays are now made in a disguised way to appear as something that anyone can typically carry in a bag whether it’s a tube of lipstick, a blush brush, a hairbrush or even a cell phone. Some of them now often comes in a variety of colors.


The following tips listed below will be very helpful for you to cleanse yourself if you accidentally come under the attack of a pepper spray.

However, always endeavor to buy your pepper spray from a reputed dealer and not from some surplus store or flea markets.

  • Immediately leave the area.
  • Rinse any other affected areas with soap and water.
  • Cover up, Protect your face.
  • Keep your distance: moving into an area with fresh air, if possible.
  • Removing clothing that may have come into contact with the spray to decontaminate and prevent re-contamination.
  • Avoiding touching the affected area, as it is easy to spread the oil-based solution to other areas of the body by doing so.
  • Blinking the eyes rapidly to help flush out the chemical.


Here are some answers to the frequently asked questions that would guide you through your buying process:

How can I identify the certification/approval rating of a pepper spray?

To check the approval or certification rating of a pepper spray, you need to consider the Scoville Heat Units (SHU) and the accuracy.

What is the major ingredient of pepper spray?
The major ingredients in pepper spray are generally referred to as capsaicinoids. They are accorded the military symbol OC for “oleoresin capsicum.” The essential compound in OC is capsaicin. This is gotten from chili peppers in a chemical process that breaks down and extracts it into a liquid.
How does pepper spray work?
Pepper spray is a chemical compound that irritates the eyes. This way, it leads to temporary blindness by dilating the eyes’ capillaries and inflaming mucus membranes. It also causes pain and a burning sensation. The consequences of pepper spray can last for a day, although vision usually recovers by itself after fifteen minutes.
Is it okay to buy Pepper sprays from anywhere online?
Yes, you can as long as it meets your need and obeys the prevailing law in your region. However, you must make sure that you don’t just get your pepper spray from a flea store or from not so reputed dealer.
What kind of pepper spray should I buy?
Before you buy any spray, you need to consider what is legal in your country or state. You also need to look at the appropriate size that can keep you within arm’s reach. The type of dangers you are protecting yourself from and how you want to carry your spray also matters as well your ability to safely and effectively use pepper spray.
Can anyone use Pepper spray?
It is legitimate in some states in the USA such as California, Massachusetts, Texas, New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin etc to carry some pepper spray with you as long as it is to be used in self-defense and you are over 18 years of age. Using pepper spray undependable can provoke criminal or civil liability. Spraying an innocent victim in the face is a crime.
How many shots would I get from pepper spray?
The last thing you want happening is your pepper spray running out when you need it the most. This is why you need to have an estimate or range of the amount of shots you can get from your pepper spray. Depending on the type of pepper spray, you can get an approximate of 35 shots from a pepper spray but it depends the size of the pepper spray you purchase.
What is the shelf life of a pepper spray, and how often do I need to replace it?
Whether or not you use your pepper spray, it is ideal for changing it every 12 to 18 months. If you appropriately keep your pepper spray canisters, it is perfect for replacing the canister every one to two years and assuredly by the canister expiration date. This is because every aerosol product will, in the end, lose pressure with time.
How long will the pepper spray protect me from an attacker?
A pepper spray leads to an instant closing of the eyes, difficulty breathing, runny nose, and coughing. The full length of its effects determines the power of the spray; the general full effect lasts from 20 to 90 minutes. Eye irritation and redness can last for up to a day.
Will pepper spray make it possible to breathe if there isn’t enough oxygen in the air?
Pepper spray causes irritation of the mucus membranes. When you are exposed to pepper spray, the inhalation can result in coughing, difficulty breathing, nasal and throat irritation, and runny nose. These effects are often lenient and short-term, lasting minutes to hours.
Will a pepper spray protect me from anyone?
As much as pepper spray is a form of self-defense, you do not have to depend entirely on pepper spray to stop an attack. The effects of pepper spray may differ from person to person, but it will last between 15 and 45 minutes. Pepper spray generally has a scale of approximately 6 to 10 feet, permitting you to spray an attacker from a distance.
What all threats will the Pepper spray protect me from?
Pepper sprays are accessible in the market for personal protection. Pepper sprays do work and will keep you safe from being a victim of crime such as personal attacks in a dark alley, dog attacks, parking garages, camping in the wild to protect themselves from bear attacks amongst others.
What are the different Pepper sprays available, and how do they differ from each other?
Different pepper sprays include Pepper Spray Fogger, Pepper Spray Stream, Pepper Spray Gel, and Pepper Spray Foam and many more.


Knowledge about pepper spray as well as its usage tips and advantages are essential. Pepper sprays do work and will keep you safe from being a victim of crime such as personal attacks in any challenging situation. Whether or not you are part of a law enforcement agency, as long as you are above the legal age, you can possess a pepper spray. Every user should also endeavor not to violate the rules.

There are different brands and pepper spray product available in the market. You need to stay informed regarding new pepper sprays that may be available in the market. This is because science and technology keep making significant changes to the development of pepper spray. A reason for this variation is because the chemical in the pepper spray is gotten from different red chili peppers. One of the most important tips you must know is the general rating system of a pepper spray which is typically evaluated in Scoville Heat Units (SHU).

A pepper spray should be an important personal tool for you. Get yours today at Pepper Sprays.

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