The Best Knife for Self Defense to Carry: How to Choose

Self-defense is a serious matter. In an ideal world, we’d all be able to rely on law enforcement and other people to keep us safe. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. There are plenty of situations where carrying a knife for self-defense is a good idea.

Choosing the best knife for self-defense can be tricky. You want something big enough to be effective but not so big that it’s cumbersome. You also want something you can easily deploy that won’t get in the way when you’re not using it. So, if you’re undecided on which knife to carry for self-defense, this article is for you.

Is Knife-Carrying for Self Defense Legal?

While the carrying of knives has been regulated for centuries, the debate over whether or not it should be legal to carry a knife for self-defense is ongoing. In some countries, like the United Kingdom, it is illegal to carry any weapon, regardless of intent. Some knife laws vary from state to state in other places, like the United States.

Some states have no restrictions on knife carrying, while others prohibit carrying certain types of knives. The discussion around knife-carrying often revolves around the question of public safety. Proponents of stricter laws argue that carrying knives in public places leads to more violence and makes it difficult for law enforcement to distinguish between criminals and innocent bystanders.

Those who support less restrictive laws argue that knife-carrying can be a useful form of self-defense, particularly for women and other vulnerable groups. The debate is unlikely to be resolved anytime soon, but whether or not knife-carrying should be legal will continue to be a controversial and highly divisive issue.

Types of Knife for Self Defense to Carry

Most people think of knives as tools, not a self defense weapon. However, a knife can be a formidable self-defense tool in the right hands. Many different types of knives are available on the market, but not all are suitable for self-defense purposes. Here are the types of knives that are most commonly used for self-defense:

🔪Fixed Blade Knives

A fixed blade knife is a type of knife where the blade is unable to fold into the handle. Fixed blades knives are generally considered more durable and reliable than folding knives, making them a good option for self-defense. It is often used by military and law enforcement personnel.

The main disadvantages of fixed blade knives are that they can be more difficult to concealed carry, as they usually require a sheath, and they are not as easy to deploy as a folding knife. However, many believe that the advantages outweigh the disadvantages, making them a good option for self-defense.

🔪Folding Knives

In order to be effective, a self-defense knife must be easy to concealed carry, fast to deploy, and comfortable to use. That’s why folding knives are often the best choice for self-defense since it is considered a carry knife. Unlike fixed-blade knives, folding knives can be easily carried in a pocket or purse, always within reach when needed.

Additionally, most folding knives have mechanisms that allow them to be deployed quickly and easily, giving you the element of surprise in a dangerous situation. And since they are smaller and lighter than fixed-blade knives, folding knives are less likely to cause injuries if used incorrectly.

However, there are some disadvantages to folding knives. They are not as strong or durable as fixed-blade knives, and the blades can sometimes become loose over time. Additionally, some folding knives have locking mechanisms that can make them difficult to deploy in a hurry.

🔪Full Tang Knives

A full tang knife is a knife where the blade runs the handle’s full length. This offers several advantages over other types of knives regarding self-defense. A full tang knife is much stronger than a knife with a partial tang. It means it is less likely to break if you use it to defend yourself against an attacker.

Additionally, a full tang knife provides better balance and control. It can be critical in self-defense, where you may need to make quick, precise movements. A full tang knife is usually more comfortable to grip, giving you an extra edge in knife fighting. The main disadvantage of full tang knives is that they are often more expensive than other types of knives. Additionally, they can be more difficult to carry, as they usually require a sheath.

🔪Multi-tool Knives

A multi-tool knife is a versatile and handy tool with you at all times, but it can also be a great self-defense tool. The knife can cut through rope or webbing, open bottles or cans, or even help you escape from zip ties or duct tape. In addition, the blade can be used to defend yourself against an attacker. The main thing to remember is to keep the knife sharp and clean and practice using it to familiarize you with its capabilities. With a little preparation, a multi-tool knife can be a valuable addition to your self-defense arsenal.

Factors to Consider When Choosing the Knife for Self Defense

When choosing a knife for self-defense, there are several factors you should take into consideration, and here are some of them:


As mentioned above, several knives can be used for self-defense, including fixed blade, folding, full tang, and multi-tool knives. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, so choosing the type that best suits your needs is essential.

If you want a knife that is easy to carry and deploy, a folding knife might be the best option. And, if you want a stronger, more durable knife, a fixed blade or full tang knife would be a better choice. Also, versatile multi-tool knives can be a good option if you want a knife that can do more than just defend you in an emergency.


Choosing the right size knife for self-defense is a critical decision. The size of the knife will determine how effective it is as a weapon. A smaller knife may be easier to conceal, but it will not have the same stopping power as a larger knife. A larger knife may be more difficult to carry, but it will be much more effective in an altercation. Generally, a knife with a blade four to six inches long is a good choice for self-defense. 


The material of the knife is also an important consideration. The blade should be made from a high-quality, durable material that withstands duress. A stainless steel blade is a good option, as it is resistant to rust and corrosion. Additionally, the handle should be made from a material that provides a good grip, even when your hands are sweaty or bloody. 


Of course, price is always a consideration when choosing any weapon. However, it’s important to remember that a self-defense knife is a tool that could potentially save your life. So, while you don’t want to spend more than you have to, choosing a quality knife that you can rely on is important.

The Benefits of Using Knife for Self Defense 

A knife can be a powerful weapon, and it can also be an invaluable tool. In self-defense, a knife can give you the upper hand in a dangerous situation. There are many benefits to using a knife for self-defense and here are just a few of them:

🔴Effective Weapon

A knife is perhaps the most overlooked weapon in self-defense and can be used in several ways to disable an attacker. While it is true that a knife can be used to inflict serious harm, it can also be used as a tool for escape or to create distance between you and your attacker. In addition, a knife can buy you time to call for help or to find a better defensive knife position. Whether you carry a folding knife or a fixed blade, make sure you are familiar with its use and practice deploying it quickly in an emergency situation. 

🔴Easy to Carry and Conceal

One of the benefits of using a knife for self-defense is that it is relatively easy to carry and conceal. Unlike firearm, which must be carried in holster or bag, knives can be slipped into a pocket or worn around the neck. It makes it less likely that an attacker will be able to disarm you, and it also makes it easier to surprise an attacker with a well-placed strike. In addition, a knife can be used for other purposes, such as opening boxes or cutting rope, which makes it a more versatile tool than a gun. For these reasons, carrying a knife can be a helpful way to defend yourself in emergencies.

🔴Accessible in the Market 

When it comes to self-defense, a wide variety of weapons can be used. However, one of the most accessible and affordable options is a knife. They are readily available in various stores and come in a wide range of prices. You can buy them at most hardware stores, sporting goods stores, and drugstores.

🔴More Natural than Hand Gun

Most people are more comfortable and familiar with using a knife than a handgun. In addition, knives are less likely to malfunction than handguns. This is because knives have fewer moving parts than handguns. As a result, knives can be a more reliable option for self-defense.

🔴Does Not Escalate Self Defense

Another benefit of using a knife for self defense is that it is less likely to escalate violence. Often, the mere sight of a knife is enough to deter an attacker. On the other hand, using a handgun can often escalate an attack, as the attacker may feel that they need to use deadly force to defend themselves.

Self-Defense Tips When Using Knife

best knife for self defense to carry

If you have decided to carry a knife for self-defense, you should keep a few things in mind. Here are some tips to help you stay safe:

✔Be Prepared

The first and most important tip is to be prepared. It means you should know how to use your knife before finding yourself in a dangerous situation. Make sure you are familiar with your knife’s features and know how to deploy it quickly. In addition, you should practice using your knife to be confident in your ability to use it in an emergency situation.

✔Training is Important

While a knife can be an effective weapon, it is important to remember that it is not a magic wand. In order to be truly prepared, you should consider taking a self-defense class that includes knife training. It will allow you to learn how to use your knife in various situations and help you become more confident in your ability to defend yourself.

✔Choose the Right Knife

Not all knives are created equal. When choosing a knife for self-defense, you should consider the size, weight, and blade style. You want something big enough to be effective but not so big that it is cumbersome. In addition, you want a knife that you can easily deploy and won’t get in the way when you’re not using it.

✔Be Aware of Your Surroundings

As with any weapon, a knife is only as effective as the person using it. In order to be prepared, you should always be aware of your surroundings and know what to do if you are attacked. It means being aware of potential escape routes and having a plan in case of an attack.

✔Don’t Be Afraid to Use It

If you find yourself in a dangerous situation, don’t be afraid to use your knife. Remember, a knife is a weapon that can be used to defend yourself. However, you should only use it as a last resort. If you can safely escape or call for help, do so. Only use your knife if you are in immediate danger and feel you have no other choice.

✔Know When to Stop

If you are in a situation where you need to use your knife, it is important to know when to stop. Once you have stopped the threat, put away your knife and call for help. Continuing to threaten or attack someone after they are no longer a threat can land you in legal trouble.

List of Other Self Defense Tools You Can Carry

In addition to a knife, you can carry many other self-defense tools. These include:

â–¶Pepper Spray

It’s a fact of life that we all must live with: the world can be a dangerous place. From muggers to rapists, some would do us harm if given a chance. Women, in particular, are often targets of attack. Fortunately, there are self-defense tools that can help keep us safe. One such tool is pepper spray. Small enough to fit in a purse or pocket, it can be easily carried wherever you go. And in the event of an attack, it can incapacitate an assailant long enough for you to make your escape. When used correctly, pepper spray can be a powerful weapon in the knife fight against crime.

â–¶Key Ring

Keyrings can be excellent self defense tools, provided you choose the right style and know how to use them effectively. Many key rings come equipped with sharp objects like spikes or blades, which can be used to jab or slash an attacker. Others feature heavy metal knuckles, which can deliver a powerful punch. Additionally, many key rings are made of strong materials like steel or titanium, which can be used to block or strike an assailant. 

Of course, the most important factor in using a key ring for self defense is knowing how to use it properly. Fortunately, plenty of resources are available to help you learn the proper techniques. You can turn your key ring into a formidable self-defense weapon with a little practice.

â–¶Tactical Pen

A tactical pen is a writing instrument designed for self-defense. While it may look like a regular pen, a tactical pen is usually made from stronger materials such as aluminum or steel. It can also have features such as a built-in flashlight or glass breaker. Tactical pens are legal to carry in most places, and they can be an effective way to defend yourself in a dangerous situation. A tactical pen can inflict serious injury on an attacker when used properly. 

The sharp point can be used to jab at sensitive areas such as the eyes, and the heavy body can be used to strike with force. In addition, some tactical knife pens come equipped with DNA collectors that can be used to identify an attacker. Whether walking alone at night or traveling in an unfamiliar place, carrying a tactical pen can give you peace of mind knowing that you have a reliable self-defense tool.

â–¶Tactical flashlight

A tactical flashlight is an incredibly versatile self-defense tool that can be carried with you at all times. Not only can it be used to illuminate dark areas, but it can also be used to disorient and blind an attacker. In addition, the heavy-duty construction of a tactical flashlight can make it an effective blunt weapon in close quarters. Whether walking alone at night or caught in a dangerous situation, a tactical flashlight can give you the edge you need to stay safe. With so many uses, it is no wonder that tactical flashlights have become a must-have item for anyone who values their safety.


Tasers deliver an electric shock that can immobilize an attacker, giving you time to get away. These are small and easy to carry, making them a convenient option for self-defense. Tasers are also legal in most states, so you can rest assured that you won’t be breaking the law if you use one in self-defense.

While Tasers are generally considered safe, it is important to use them responsibly. Tasers should only be used as a last resort, and you should always aim for the attacker’s chest or back. This will help to ensure that the electric shock will be as effective as possible. Used properly, a Taser can be a powerful self-defense tool that can help keep you safe from harm.

â–¶Stun guns

The idea of using stun guns for self-defense is gaining popularity. A stun gun is a hand-held device that emits an electrical charge designed to disable an attacker temporarily. They are relatively easy to use and can be an effective way to defend yourself in a dangerous situation. Stun guns come in various shapes and sizes; some even offer additional features like built-in flashlights or alarm systems. 

When choosing a stun gun, it is important to consider your own personal safety needs and choose a model that will be most effective for you. Some people worry that carrying a stun gun may make them more likely to be targeted by criminals.

However, studies have shown that criminals are less likely to target victims who they believe are armed. In addition, stun guns can be used in non-lethal ways to deter attackers, such as by firing them into the air or using them to touch an attacker without making direct contact. When used properly, stun guns can be a powerful self-defense tool.

â–¶Safety Whistles

A safety whistle is an important self-defense tool that everyone should carry. A whistle’s loud, shrill sound can help startle an attacker and draw attention to the situation. Additionally, a safety whistle can signal for help, even if you cannot speak or cry out. When choosing a safety whistle, look for one that is small and easy to carry. You should also test the whistle to ensure it is loud enough to be heard from a distance. Practice using the whistle so that you will be prepared in an emergency.

â–¶Personal GPS

A GPS system is an incredibly versatile tool that can be used for various purposes. Personal GPS devices are becoming increasingly popular, and for a good reason. In addition to being a useful navigation tool, a personal GPS can also be used for self-defense. If you find yourself in a dangerous situation, you can use your GPS to send an SOS signal alerting authorities to your location. You can also use it to keep track of your belongings, such as your car or your luggage, and to stay safe while traveling in unfamiliar areas. With so many benefits, it’s no wonder that personal GPS devices are becoming a must-have item for people of all ages.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to choose the most suitable knife for self defense?

While there are many different weapons, a knife is often the best option. When choosing a knife for self defense, it’s crucial to select one that is both strong and sharp. A serrated blade is often a good choice, as it can easily slice through flesh and bone. Additionally, it’s important to choose a knife with a comfortable grip. After all, you’ll need to be able to hold onto it tight if you ever find yourself in a dangerous situation.

Is a bowie knife good for self defense?

Bowie knives are often considered weapons, and while they can certainly be used for self-defense, they also have several other uses. Bowie knives were originally designed for hunting and campaigning, and many people still use them today. The large, sharp blade is ideal for skinning game and preparing meat, and the rugged construction can withstand heavy use. 

Bowie knives are also popular with campers and hikers, as they can be used for chopping wood and clearing brush. In addition, the knife can be used as a tool for self-defense if necessary. While it may not be the first choice for most people, a Bowie knife can certainly be an effective weapon in the right hands.

What are some good moves when using a utility knife for self defense?

A utility knife is a handy tool around the house – but it can also be a handy tool for self defense. Here are a few moves to keep in mind if you find yourself in a situation where you need to defend yourself with a utility knife:

1. If someone is coming at you with a knife, your first instinct might be to slash at them. But don’t do this – likely, it’ll just deflect your blade and lunge at you. Instead, try to thrust the blade into the stomach or chest. This will do more damage and might even disable long enough for you to make your escape.

2. If someone is trying to grab you, you can use the knife to slice their hands or arms. This will not only stop them from grabbing you but also cause them considerable pain – which might be enough to deter them from attacking you further.

3. If you find yourself on the ground, use the knife to jab at your attacker’s face or eyes. It will not only help you get away, but it will also blind them temporarily – giving you a crucial advantage in any further altercation.

Remember, if you’re ever in a situation where you need to defend yourself, always try to stay calm and think about your moves carefully. A utility knife can be a powerful weapon – but only if used correctly.

How big of a knife do you need for self defense?

Regarding self-defense, the size of your knife is not nearly as important as its quality and sharpness. A small, sharp knife can be just as effective as a large one, making it much easier to carry around. That said, there are certain situations where a larger knife may be more appropriate. If you are facing an attacker armed with a weapon or trying to defend yourself against an animal, a larger knife will give you a better chance of success. Ultimately, the best solution is to carry both a small and a large knife with you, so you can be prepared for any situation.

Can you easily access the knife with the dominant hand?

One important consideration when choosing a kitchen knife is whether or not you can easily access it with your dominant hand. If you’re right-handed, you’ll want to ensure the knife is within easy reach on the right side of the counter. And if you’re left-handed, you’ll want to do the same on the left side. Of course, this isn’t always possible, depending on the layout of your kitchen. But it’s worth considering because it can make a big difference in how comfortable and efficient you are in the kitchen. So when shopping for a new knife, be sure to consider whether or not you can easily access it with your dominant hand.

Bottom Line

Self-defense is a tricky subject, and there is no one-size-fits-all solution. The best knife for self-defense is the one you feel most comfortable with and can deploy quickly and easily. If you’re unsure of which knife to choose, follow the tips in this article and consult with a professional so that you’ll be able to find the perfect knife for your needs.

Recent Posts