If you are a soldier, law enforcement agent, security guard, or just someone who feels that they need to improve their protection, a Kevlar® vest may be the optimal choice for you. Body armor made from Kevlar protects against ballistic (bullet) threats, and additional layers can expand to include even certain rifle rounds. Vests made from this material are lightweight, dependable, and durable, making them an ideal choice in different environments and scenarios. Compared to other materials on the market, Kevlar body armor outperforms them in terms of flexibility and high protection-to-weight ratio.
Lighter Body Armor: Kevlar
Historically, bulletproof panels have always been heavy. This is due to the heavy materials used. Vests often used steel plates as protective panels, which is not the ideal material. Eventually, scientists and developers started collaborating to find an alternative that would give people the protection they needed while keeping mobility high and the weight low.
After several years of research, a breakthrough occurred in the 1970s when Kevlar was discovered by the DuPont Company. Originally used in the manufacture of racing tires, developers realized that its durability and low weight made it ideal for other purposes. After additional developments and tests, Kevlar proved to be much stronger than steel, at just a fraction of its weight. Scientists then focused on designing this material in a way that allows it to be used in ballistic panels for body armor protection. After many years of development, they achieved this, and today, Kevlar remains one of the best materials in the manufacture of protective equipment.
Kevlar offers exceptional protection against ballistic/bullet threats. For people working as security guards or law enforcement officers – covert vests made of this material give an excellent level of protection. Kevlar is lightweight, flexible, and relatively thin, which allows it to be easily worn under clothing and remain concealed. It is also used in the manufacturing of overt vests, which are worn by military operatives with additional panels and plates for more protection from heavy enemy fire.
Kevlar panels are available in different protection levels, allowing wearers to select the level that meets their needs. For example, a security guard will likely not require the same protection as a military operative in a war zone.
For Kevlar vests to remain as effective as possible, they need to be properly stored and handled, which includes keeping them away from water and direct sunlight. Specially designed carriers for storage are an option if you want to be sure that your vest does not get creased or bent as this can compromise its integrity. Hanging the vest is not recommended as it puts strain on the fibers. Storing it in a flat position on a shelf is acceptable only when it’s not pressed against other pieces of clothing or items.
These precautions ensure that the body armor will retain its protective properties and continue to serve its purpose for many years. The Kevlar material has a long shelf life and can remain viable for a very long time if you take proper care of it. If you want to learn more on how to store, handle, wash and repair your protective equipment, you can read our articles on taking care of your Kevlar vest to ensure you’re always safe against ballistic and other threats.