A flashlight for self-defense can be used in several ways: As a baton, to confuse with a strobe function and to defend against blows

Which variants and forms of tactical flashlights are available, which additional functions are useful and which are prohibited, we present you in the following article

In 30 seconds the most important:

  • Bright light & strobe function (light flickering) can blind and confuse attackers
  • Ideal self-defense weapon even for weak people, but should be combined with martial arts techniques or pepper spray
  • Can be taken anywhere, as it is not classified as a weapon
  • Some additional functions (e.g. with stun gun function) are prohibited in Germany
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Tactical flashlight suitable for defense?

Whether a tactical LED flashlight is suitable for self-defense, can only answer “yes”. To share in any case, how it helps you in the defense exactly we present below.

Our conclusion beforehand: A tactical flashlight alone is a help for defense (e.g. confusion of the attacker by stroboscope function), so that you have time to escape. In a confrontation, the serrated crown will help you as a punch amplifier. However, there are more effective self-defense weapons, so it is best to combine your lamp with a blank pistol, pepper spray or a stun gun.

Glare & strobe function for confusion

First and foremost, of course, is the attempt to blind your attacker. While the flare won’t permanently incapacitate your opponent, it will buy you a moment to either actually attack or increase your lead to escape.

An effective additional function for self-defense is offered by the strobe flashlight. A “strobe” is a kind of flashing light, so these flashlights “flash” your attacker blind for a short time. The idea here is simple: The eye adapts to constant brightness conditions. However, the change between light and dark (i.e. the light flashes) takes away this possibility and increases the glare effect enormously.

How strong this effect is, depends in particular on the lumen number (value for brightness) and the flashing frequency of your lamp. In addition, the effect is naturally higher, the smaller the beam distance from the attacker is.

BUT: One glare is not enough – but you get a time advantage that can save you. Now, consequently, you have to take flight or incapacitate the attacker, for example by a blow, pepper spray or similar self-defense weapons.

Serrated crown as a slashing weapon

If the glare does not work, because your attacker, for example, gets a hand in front of the light beam in time, then you have the self-defense flashlight to use as a striking tool. In what way, however, depends mainly on the size of the lamp.

  • Large flashlights (e.g. the stick-shaped Maglites from 40cm length) can be used like a baton. Due to the leverage, your punching power is also increased and you get more range.
  • Smaller flashlights can not be used as a baton. Here you take the lamp in your fist and use the lamp like a Kubotan. Pointed teeth (serrated crown) at the end of the lamp make the blow even more effective. But here you have to go directly into close combat. These can also function as glass breakers in an emergency.

Light & alarm creates a stir

No attacker wants to attract attention. Whether he’s stealing from you, attacking you, or planning a sexual assault, he doesn’t want to attract attention. Here, the tactical lamp can also help you.

  • Flashlights with alarm function are no longer rare on the market and can be bought freely. Since they are not weapons, there is also no age limit. The loud alarm makes people in the vicinity aware of you and your emergency situation.
  • Light beam stands out in darkness: In a dark park, the light cone or flickering of the strobe will stand out, so the brightness can also help you attract attention. The light beam of good flashlights is visible for several hundred meters and thus can attract the attention of people far away.

Defense against multiple opponents?

In the case of defense against multiple attackers, you won ‘t be able to achieve great effects with the strobe flashlight alone.

  • The surprise effect of blinding is rather ineffective against several opponents, because they will not stand next to each other and therefore you cannot blind all of them at the same time.
  • If necessary, other people will become aware of your situation, which could still help you.

General information about tactical flashlights

So that you know what to expect from the lamp and what not, as well as which functions are prohibited in Germany, we present here some more general background information about the LED defense flashlights.

Videos: Tactical flashlights in test

So that you can get an idea of what the models do, you can find a few videos below. The videos show how the individual functions of the tactical flashlights can be used for self-defense.


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Tactical flashlight in test

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Self defense flashlight in test

Permitted and prohibited additional functions

There are also models combined with other tools for self-defense. For example, there are flashlights with an alarm function, in baton form or with a stun gun in the front cover

Attention forbidden

First of all, you need to know that any flashlights with st un guns are prohibited in Germany. These models, which are mostly manufactured in Asia, do not have a PTB test mark and are therefore considered a prohibited weapon under the Weapons Act. Furthermore, even if you are granted self-defense, you will have to answer for unauthorized possession of weapons. So it is better to keep your hands off these models.

You should also be careful with models that resemble a baton. If you visit a public meeting with such a model, you could get discussions with the police (or more).

For whom is a tactical flashlight suitable?

Anyone can use a flashlight in self-defense, regardless of age or stature. Flashlights that do not have unauthorized additional functions freely available for sale.

  • Outdoor lovers: perfect for joggers, dog owners, walkers, the flashlight is a help at night and provides assistance in case of assault.
  • For the handbag: Small models also fit into any ladies handbag and are a good addition. And very important: you can also take them to clubs or to a demonstration, this is not the case with a stun gun.

Tips for buying: 6 crucial features

If you want to buy a tactical flashlight, you should pay attention to these features in particular

Our test winner would need to have these six features.

  1. Lumens: the lamp should have a brightness of around 1000 lumens or more.
  2. Strobe: There should be a strobe function available. Gladly, otherlight modes with various brightness levels as well.
  3. Metal + Prongs: The tactical flashlight should be very sturdy (metal) and the end of the light should have prongs.
  4. Waterproof: Buy a model that is waterproof.
  5. Battery: We recommend a fixed battery with a strong performance (2000mAh should be it), but is often not specified – so you have a good burn time.
  6. Size: Decide: Small model for the handbag, usable as a Kubotan or a large lamp, which can serve as a baton, but then rather for home defense and not for travel.

Buy tactical flashlight

Here you can find offers from Amazon, there you can get more information about the offered self-defense flashlights.

FAQ about defense flashlights

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Classic rod flashlight

Attention: Our content has been carefully prepared, however, legal standards change and some are subject to interpretation. We can not guarantee the following information, for a legally sound advice please consult a lawyer. Status: 03/ 2020

Update: 2023-05-28 / Affiliate Links / Bilder von der Amazon Product Advertising API