Guardian Self Defense and Security Blog

Is Pepper Gel Better Than Pepper Spray?

Is pepper gel better than aerosol pepper spray? First, lets consider that the active ingredient in all self defense sprays, including pepper gel is oleoresin capsicum (OC) which is derived from cayenne pepper. The effectiveness of a defense spray is measured using a term called scoville heat units(SHU), which is basically the hotness or potency of the spray.

pepper gel in face

A jalapeno pepper has a 5000 (SHU); while a good OC spray has a 2 million (SHU). You can just imagine how hot that is. Second, a short 1/2 second burst in the face of an attacker will stop them nearly instantly. OC swells the capillaries in the eyes causing blindness. The respiratory track becomes severely irritated and the focus becomes life support breathing. Extreme coughing and mucus discharge from the nose and mouth can be expected.

The main drawback to aerosol pepper spray is the potential for blowback or cross-contamination. Users are at risk for potential blowback if spraying a fogger style pepper spray directly into the wind. Cross-contamination is possible with aerosol pepper spray if used within close quarters or confined spaces. With pepper gel users generally can expect an increased effective range of up to 25 feet. This is a great benefit, as you increase the effective range, you also improve your overall safety.

mace pepper gels

The gel is dispersed as a tight stream pattern, as the gel reaches its intended target, it sticks like glue. This makes it very difficult to remove. This also eliminates the chances of cross-contamination and blowback. Pepper gels are perfect for indoor use because they won't emit any fumes and unintentional overspray is almost completely eliminated. Pepper gel is non-flammable and can be used with a firearm, taser, or stun gun.

Pepper Gel is used by many law enforcement professionals, postal carriers, meter readers and so many others. The cost of pepper gel is affordable, starting at less than twenty bucks for a 45 gram canister. Pepper spray and pepper gel have so much in common, yet they have some very distinct differences. Overall, the increased range and less contaminating formula make pepper gel a wise choice when choosing a self defense spray.

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