In an age where personal safety and preparedness are becoming increasingly important, tactical pens have emerged as a versatile and essential tool. Combining the practicality of a writing instrument with the functionality of a self-defense tool, tactical pens are gaining popularity among outdoor enthusiasts, everyday carry (EDC) aficionados, and security professionals. In this blog post, we’ll delve into what tactical pens are, their uses, and highlight some of the top brands available in the market.

What is a Tactical Pen?

A tactical pen is a sturdy, often discreet tool that serves multiple purposes. While it functions as a regular pen for writing, its design and construction enable it to be used in self-defense situations. Typically made from durable materials like aircraft-grade aluminum, stainless steel, or titanium, these pens can withstand significant impact. They often feature additional elements such as glass breakers, DNA collectors, and ergonomic grips for enhanced control.

Key Uses of Tactical Pens

  1. Self-Defense: The primary appeal of tactical pens is their use as a self-defense tool. Their solid construction allows them to be used for striking an assailant, delivering a powerful blow to sensitive areas such as the eyes, throat, or groin.
  2. Glass Breaking: Many tactical pens are equipped with a glass breaker tip, making them invaluable in emergency situations. This feature allows you to quickly shatter a car window to escape or rescue someone.
  3. Writing: Despite their robust construction, tactical pens are fully functional writing instruments. They often use high-quality ink cartridges that work under extreme conditions, such as underwater or in extreme temperatures.
  4. Everyday Carry (EDC): Tactical pens are a popular component of EDC kits due to their multifunctionality. They can be carried discreetly in a pocket, backpack, or purse, ready to assist in various scenarios.
  5. Emergency Preparedness: Beyond self-defense and writing, tactical pens can be used in other emergency situations, such as signaling for help, making a tourniquet, or even as an improvised tool.

Top Brands of Tactical Pens

When choosing a tactical pen, it’s crucial to opt for a reputable brand known for quality and reliability. Here are some of the top brands in the market:

  1. Gerber: Known for their extensive range of outdoor and survival gear, Gerber’s tactical pens are no exception. The Gerber Impromptu Tactical Pen, for instance, is highly regarded for its rugged design and integrated glass breaker.
  2. Smith & Wesson: A well-known name in the firearms industry, Smith & Wesson also produces reliable tactical pens. Their Tactical Pen series features robust construction and practical self-defense features.
  3. Schrade: Schrade offers a variety of tactical pens that are both affordable and durable. The Schrade SCPENBK, for example, combines an ergonomic design with a powerful striking tip.
  4. SureFire: Primarily known for their high-performance flashlights, SureFire also excels in producing high-quality tactical pens. The SureFire Writing Pen IV is a top choice, offering a smooth writing experience alongside its tactical capabilities.
  5. CRKT (Columbia River Knife and Tool): CRKT is renowned for its innovative designs and quality craftsmanship. The CRKT Williams Tactical Pen is a popular option, designed by a former Army officer for optimal performance.
  6. Benchmade: Benchmade is synonymous with precision and durability. Their tactical pens, such as the Benchmade 1100, are crafted with meticulous attention to detail, offering both elegance and functionality.

Tips for Choosing the Right Tactical Pen

  • Material: Opt for pens made from high-strength materials like aluminum, titanium, or stainless steel for maximum durability.
  • Grip: Ensure the pen has an ergonomic grip for better control and comfort, especially during self-defense situations.
  • Features: Consider additional features such as glass breakers, DNA collectors, and compatibility with various ink cartridges.
  • Size and Weight: Choose a pen that is comfortable to carry and use. It should be heavy enough to be effective in self-defense but light enough for everyday carry.
  • Brand Reputation: Stick to well-known brands with positive reviews to ensure you’re getting a quality product.


Tactical pens are a must-have for anyone looking to enhance their personal safety while carrying a versatile tool for everyday use. Whether you’re a survivalist, a frequent traveler, or simply someone who values preparedness, a tactical pen can be a game-changer. By understanding their uses and knowing which brands to trust, you can make an informed decision and find the perfect tactical pen to suit your needs. Stay safe and prepared!


An amateur radio operator, military veteran, jack of all trades and master of none.

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