Best Pepper Spray for Self Defense

Best Pepper Spray


When choosing the best self-defense pepper spray gun for women , the first decision is to select a spray or a shot. Although both operate similarly, the distribution of these self-defense tools is different.

A pepper spray gun is the typical product you imagine, delivering a stream that incapacitates an attacker or animal. Some options allow you to hit targets up to 20 feet away.

Pepper shots are more effective because you can generate more severe physical symptoms upon impact. It irritates the mucus membranes and forces the eyes to swell shut from irritation and inflammation.

Here at Self Defense Mall, we offer the best pepper spray options for sale, including shots, gels, and practice cans, to ensure you remain protected.

desicion time

How to choose the best pepper spray for self-defense

We researched the best pepper spray to help you find the right one. We also dig into common questions and state laws for extra information you should know before buying one of these self-defense weapons.

Pepper Spray Strength and Effect

The strength and effect of pepper spray products depend on the formula. Each brand uses a different percentage and grade of Oleoresin Capsicum (OC) to deliver an effective self-defense tool. [[1]]

Pepper Spray Type Scoville Heat Units (SHUs)
Mild 0 – 2,000 SHUs
Medium 2,000 – 5,000 SHUs
Hot 5,000 – 10,000 SHUs
Very Hot 10,000 – 50,000 SHUs
Extremely Hot 50,000 – 100,000 SHUs
Super Hot 100,000 – 350,000 SHUs
Ultra Hot 350,000 – 2,000,000 SHUs
Beyond Ultra Hot 2,000,000+ SHUs

An easy way to compare the best pepper spray products is to look at the Scoville scale rating, which is the same one used to compare chilies and other peppers. [[2]]

The average hot sauce tops out at 2,000 Scoville Heat Units (SHU). An introductory pepper spray for women provides 100,000 SHU.

When you want the best pepper spray for women, look for an item rated at 250,000 SHU or higher. As the rating increases, you won’t need to make a direct impact to neutralize an attacker. Even being in the vicinity of the discharge, especially when tear gas is included, can stop someone or an animal from proceeding.

Here are more considerations to review when looking for the best pepper spray to use today.

1. Comfortable to Use

Most pepper spray self-defense kit products for women come with safety features that prevent an accidental discharge. Choose a design that works with your hand size and a grip that feels easy to use. You don’t want to be fumbling for your preferred self-defense tool in an emergency.

When choosing the best pepper spray for women, the first decision is to select a spray or a shot. Although both operate similarly, the distribution of these self-defense tools is different.

A pepper spray is the typical product you imagine, delivering a stream that incapacitates an attacker or animal. Some options allow you to hit targets up to 20 feet away.

Pepper shots are more effective because you can generate more severe physical symptoms upon impact. It irritates the mucus membranes and forces the eyes to swell shut from irritation and inflammation.

Here at Self Defense Mall, we offer the best pepper spray options for sale, including shots, gels, and practice cans, to ensure you remain protected.

2. Easy to Carry Self-Defense Pepper Spray For Women

The best pepper spray products for women come in several easy-to-carry designs. You’ll find options that look like a lipstick container, cell phone, or other everyday items. Some are small enough to hook to a keychain or slip into a pocket or a purse. [[3]]

You can also find pistol-like distribution methods that deliver a steady stream or short bursts of the best pepper spray for self-defense to stop an attacker.

You can carry pepper spray gun products with nylon holsters, leather belt clips, or Velcro straps that keep the container in your hand.

3. Choose the Distribution

When you use pepper spray as a self-defense tool, you can select from products that deploy as a foam, gel, fog, or stream. [[4]]

papper spray

Foams, gels, and streams put the spray right on the attacker, but they also require accuracy to stop an attack. Fogging requires less precision, but it usually needs a higher SHU rating to be effective.

You’re less likely to be impacted by foams, gels, or streams unless the attacker is hit within five feet of your location. Fog products can be blown by the wind toward you after distribution, so you’ll want to think about your preferred escape route.

What Are the Best Pepper Spray Products to Use For Self-Defense?

liptick pepper spray


ultimate features

  • 1.2% MC & 8.5% OC
  • Made with 2,000,000 SHUs
  • Effects last up to 45 minutes
  • 6-8 foot range
  • Discrete design
  • Available in 4 colors (Black, Pink, Red, and Silver)
  • UV-identifying dye
  • 4″ x ½”


Add to cart

The lipstick pepper shot gives any woman peace of mind no matter the situation. Keep this lipstick pepper shot in your purse and you’ll have it with you every time you need it most. With a design that looks exactly like lipstick, you can keep your self-defense weapon discrete and surprise any potential attacker.

With an incredibly strong formula, this lipstick pepper shot will incapacitate almost any assailant. It contains 1.2% Major Capsaicinoids to inflict excruciating pain. This is a higher content of MC than most other pepper sprays on the market. But, this pepper spray doesn’t only inflict debilitating pain on your attacker, it also temporarily blinds and disrupts breathing with a formula containing 8.5% oleoresin capsicum. Made with 2,000,000 SHUs of raw pepper, these effects can last up to 45 minutes without causing permanent damage.

On top of incapacitating your assailant, this pepper shot also incorporates a UV-identifying dye making it easy for law enforcement to find and detain your assailant. Boasting a six to eight-foot range, all you need to do is aim and spray to take down any threat. You can expect to get between six and ten 1-second sprays before needing to replace this pepper shot.

Pepper Shot Tri-Pack

papper shot


  • Tri-pack Package
  • The 2 oz. stream has a range of 10-12 feet
  • The 2 1⁄2 oz units range up to 6-8 feet
  • Quick-release
  • UV-identifying dye
  • Convenient keychain access



Have you ever owned something so necessary that you need it with you at home and anywhere else you go? But, constantly transferring it from one bag to another for different functions can be quite a hassle, so you decide to buy multiple for different purposes.

Nowadays, pepper spray for self-defense is the necessary tool you need at home and everywhere you go. With this Multi-Purpose Pepper Shot Pepper Spray Tri-Pack in your possession, you never need to worry about whether or not you remembered to pack your pepper spray.

This handy pepper shot pepper spray multi-purpose tri-pack includes pepper spray gun for your home, car, and keychain so you can protect yourself in any situation.

Because the pepper spray has 1.2% major capsaicinoids, it is significantly more effective than the vast majority of other pepper sprays that are now available on the market. In addition, the pepper spray has a formula with 8.5% Oleoresin Capsicum in it, which can cause swelling in the mucous membranes and veins in the eyes of the perpetrator. This makes it difficult for them to see and breathe for up to 45 minutes.

The pepper spray also contains a UV-identifying dye that can help identify the attacker more easily. With this handy collection of three pepper sprays for one low price, you receive the entire pepper protection anytime, anywhere.

Pepper Spray Wildfire | 1.4% MC Pepper Spray Fogger

wild fire


  • High concentration of major capsaicinoids
  • Extreme and instant effect
  • Effects last for up to 45 minutes
  • Formulated with UV-identifying dye
  • Compact size



Looking for something compact yet powerful to protect you? Look no further! This Wildfire Pepper Spray Fogger offers the highest concentration of major capsaicinoids available on the market at 1.4 percent making it the hottest pepper spray available.

Its formula also contains 10 percent oleoresin capsicum, which inflames the mucous membranes as well as the ocular veins when sprayed on someone. This causes the attacker to have trouble breathing and forces their eyes to close. In addition, it causes the attacker to experience extreme discomfort, making it hard for them to continue with their plan giving you time to escape.

The effects can continue for up to 45 minutes but do not cause irreversible harm that is chronic even though the formula contains 2,000,000 SHUs of raw pepper. Moreover, it contains a UV-identifying dye, which can help in determining who the aggressor is after getting help from the authorities. Its compact size is perfect for bringing it anywhere. You can easily slip it into a purse or pocket making it a great self-defense item.

WildFire | 1.4% MC STREAM

papper spray


  • Extreme and instant effect
  • Has a long-lasting effect of 45 minutes but no long-term damage
  • Formulated with UV-identifying pigment
  • Has sizes to choose from
  • Convenient



The Wildfire Pepper Spray Stream is a popular choice in the security industry and provides excellent personal protection and protection for the home.

With 1.4 percent of Major Capsaicinoids, Wildfire has the highest level of heat on the market. It also contains 10 percent oleoresin capsicum compound. This combination makes an attacker feel pain while also causing the mucous membranes and capillaries in the eyes to flare up. Combined, the attacker will experience extreme breathing difficulties and irritation to the eyes, which prompts them to close, giving you the time you need to get away and get help.

In addition to this, it is formulated with raw pepper with a SHU of 2,000,000. The effects of which can continue for up to 45 minutes and do not result in any long-term damage. Moreover, it features a UV-identifying pigment that can be used to help identify the person who attacked you.

There is also a suede pouch available with a belt attachment so that you can take it with you everywhere you go. The Stream is also available in a variety of sizes for your shopping and self-defense convenience. The 2oz Stream can give about 6-10 one-second spurts with an 8-10 foot range, and the 4oz Stream gives about 18-20 one-second spurts with a 13-15 foot range.

Pepper Shot | 1.2%MC 2 Oz

papper spray

Ultimate features

  • Measures 4 ⅛” x 1 ⅜”
  • Compact Design
  • Highly potent formula
  • Made from 2,000,000 SHUs of raw pepper
  • UV-identifying dye


Add to cart

Whether at home or on the go, having a handy pepper spray with you is essential. This 2-ounce Pepper Shot Pepper Spray is ideal for use at home or for carrying on your waist with a belt with a leatherette holster and belt clip. For unforeseen attacks and assaults, having this small but terrible pepper spray with you can be life-saving.

Although compact in size, this pepper spray should not be underestimated. This Pepper Shot Pepper Spray is made from raw pepper with 2,000,000 SHUs, 1.2% Major Capsaicinoids, and 8.5% Oleoresin Capsicum.

This Pepper Shot with 1.2% MC is more effective than other pepper sprays because of its high concentration of Major Capsaicinoids. Moreover, expect that an attacker’s eyes will close for up to 45 minutes due to the 8.5% Oleoresin Capsicum composition of the Pepper Shot, which causes mucous membranes to swell.

In addition to these effects, the 2-ounce bottle of pepper spray has a UV-identifying dye that can be used to help law enforcement detect and identify an aggressor. This small can of pepper spray not only protects you from a situation that could endanger your life but also protects other people who could be victims of the same attack.

Is It Legal to Use Pepper Spray for Self-Defense Purposes?

Is pepper spray legal

The best pepper spray gun products are legal to carry and use in all 50 states for self-defense. Some jurisdictions restrict the formula, size, or shipping options.

Laws and the legal status of pepper spray for women are subject to change at any time. You’ll want to ask about any local rules to follow before carrying or being forced to deploy this product, even with a low OC formulation.

It could be unlawful for you to use pepper spray for any other reason than self-defense requirements.

Since you never know when an attack (animal or human) could happen, it helps to practice using the best pepper spray before you need to deploy it in a real-life setting. When you become comfortable with the steps to target an attacker, it’ll be easier to accomplish the same result when your adrenaline is pumping. [[5]]

A Final Thought on the Best Pepper Spray

Any self-defense tool is better than nothing. When you have the best pepper spray as one of the options in your toolbox, it could save your life.

At Self Defense Mall, we provide convenient access to today’s top pepper spray brands and distribution methods. You’ll find options in various sizes so that everyone can find something that feels comfortable and easy to use.

Life comes at you fast, and an attacker can be even quicker. Thankfully, the best pepper spray gun gives you a self-defense option that works immediately so that you can escape. Let’s get you equipped today with a design that meets your needs.

[[1]] Capsicum Oleoresin – an overview | ScienceDirect Topics

[[2]] Chili Pepper Scoville Scale | ? SCOVILLESCALE.ORG

[[3]] Pepper spray: Effects, treatment, and complications


[[4]] Pepper Spray – VCU Police

[[5]] 3 Tips for Safely Testing Your Pepper Spray Before You Use It (

About the Author

Ryan Karpilo is a United States Marine Corps veteran with a passion for self-defense, physical security, and video surveillance. With years of experience serving in the military and working in various security-related roles, Ryan has developed a deep understanding of personal safety and protection strategies.

During his time in the Marine Corps, Ryan honed his skills in threat assessment, risk management, and emergency response. He has been trained in close-quarters combat techniques and possesses a keen eye for identifying potential security vulnerabilities.

After his military service, Ryan transitioned into the private sector, where he has worked in the field of physical security for several years. He has implemented comprehensive security solutions for a wide range of clients, including residential complexes, commercial establishments, and government facilities.

Ryan’s expertise extends to video surveillance systems, where he has extensive knowledge of the latest technologies and best practices. He understands the importance of leveraging surveillance cameras, access control systems, and alarm systems to enhance overall security measures.


United States Marine Corps Veteran
Multiple Video Surveillance and Physical Security Certifications
With his rich background in self-defense, physical security, and video surveillance, Ryan Karpilo is committed to sharing his knowledge and empowering individuals and organizations to create safer environments.

UPDATED: June/2023


Pepper spray is a self-defense tool that uses Oleoresin Capsicum (OC), a compound derived from chili peppers. When sprayed, it irritates the eyes, skin, and respiratory system, incapacitating an attacker momentarily, and providing you a window to escape. It’s a non-lethal tool that causes temporary discomfort and blindness.

While both are self-defense tools using OC, they differ in distribution. Pepper spray is typically a stream-based product that incapacitates an attacker or animal. Pepper shots, on the other hand, produce more severe symptoms on impact, such as swelling shut of the eyes and severe irritation to mucus membranes.

This depends on the specific product, but some pepper sprays can hit targets up to 20 feet away. Always check the product specifications to understand its effective range.

Scoville Heat Units is a measure of the heat or pungency in chili peppers. In pepper spray, SHUs indicate the intensity of the OC compound. An introductory pepper spray for women provides around 100,000 SHU, while stronger ones can go above 2,000,000 SHUs.

Pepper spray is legal for self-defense use in all 50 states in the US. However, some jurisdictions might restrict the formula, size, or shipping of pepper spray. Always check with local laws before purchasing or carrying pepper spray.

Consider factors like ease of use, portability, distribution method (spray or shot), and SHU rating. Ensure the product fits comfortably in your hand and is easy to deploy in a stressful situation. You might also consider sprays disguised as everyday items for discrete carrying.

Disguised pepper sprays like lipstick or cell phone pepper sprays are just as effective as standard ones. The difference lies in the packaging, which provides an element of surprise and allows for discreet carrying.

No, pepper spray causes temporary discomfort and incapacitation but doesn’t lead to permanent damage. Effects can last up to 45 minutes, providing ample time to escape a dangerous situation.

Always aim for the attacker’s face, specifically the eyes. Be mindful of the wind direction to avoid self-contamination. Practice using the spray before an emergency to become familiar with its operation. Lastly, remember to retreat and call for help as soon as it is safe to do so.

Most pepper sprays have a shelf-life of about 3 to 5 years. Always check the expiration date on the product and replace it as necessary. Remember, your safety is paramount.

Yes, pepper spray can be used against aggressive animals like dogs or bears. However, be sure to purchase a product specifically designed for this purpose, as they have different formulations and spray patterns suitable for deterring animals.