tactical flashlight is one of the best, most useful things you can carry on a daily basis. Not only can it be used to illuminate dark paths, hard-to-see keyholes, and other late night mysteries, but it is one of the best self-defense tools you can have. Unlike knives or other weapons, a tactical flashlight won’t draw the attention of authorities, and it can be extremely effective in a threatening situation—bright enough to momentarily blind an attacker, and tough enough to use as a blunt object in an emergency. Here are 8 of the best tactical flashlights you can buy.


Solaray Pro ZX-1

One of the brightest tactical flashlights around, the Solaray Pro ZX-1 boasts an impressive 1,200 lumens output. Strong enough to light a room, and easily powerful enough to disorient an attacker. The 5 oz. flashlight features five different modes—High, Medium, Low, Tactical Intruder Strobe, and SOS Emergency Signal—and is crafted from aircraft grade aluminum. $60


Olight M20-X Warrior Tactical LED Flashlight

Made from indestructible type III anodized aluminum, you can rest assured this flashlight from Olight will stand up to a beating. The removable crenulated bezel makes the light a vicious blunt object when you need to strike, and the tactical flashlight can be mounted to a weapon if you’re an officer or someone who carries. Packed with dual switches, three brightness levels, a tactical strobe, and a handy cigar ring, the $75 flashlight is worth every penny. $75


J5 Tactical V1-Pro Flashlight

If you aren’t looking to spend a lot but still want something that can do the job, consider the V1-Pro from J5 Tactical, which will only run you thirteen bucks. While a max output of 300 lumens won’t put this in the strongest category, that’s still more powerful than your average pocket flashlight. Compact and tough as nails, the V1-Pro feels comfortable in the hand and can be used as a blunt object. The light, which runs on a single AA battery, has an adjustable focus range and a price that can’t be beat. $13


CRKT Williams Tactical Applications Flashlight

Don’t confuse the lack of frills for this being a cheapo flashlight. The Williams Tactical Applications Flashlight from CRKT is a simple EDC flashlight that’s built to last you a lifetime. The Momentarily On feature allows you to quickly survey a scene and kill the light if it’s not needed, and, when the bezel is in, you can click it up to 8 times to change the function of the light. Each features a hard-coat, anodized aluminum body and an industrial grade rubberized tail cap button. Pricey but tough. $125


5.11 Tactical S+R A6 Flashlight

Designed with input from seasoned Search and Rescue professionals, the S+R A6 Flashlight is made with safety in mind. With the ability to cast 602 lumens of light, the flashlight meets ANSI FL 1 standards, which guarantees you’re buying a high-quality light. The light boasts a thermoplastic rubber overmold for durability and a heavy duty sleeve bezel for enhanced impact resistance. The aerospace aluminum body is surprisingly lightweight and makes for an agile survival tool. $100


Smith & Wesson MP12 Tactical Flashlight

Smith & Wesson know a think or two about outfitting police and military units with weapons. So, it should stand to reason, that when they make a tactical flashlight, they make a tactical flashlight right. Such is the case with the MP12, a tactical flashlight that can provide 875 lumens. The flashlight is crafted from anodized aerospace aluminum and is waterproof and impact resistant. That means it can assist you in even the toughest conditions. With a two-hour run time on the highest setting, it can illuminate everything around you for some time, and the deep diamond cut knurling keeps it safely in your hand no matter how you’re using it. Same durability Smith & Wesson has been known for since 1852. $75


Fenix PD35 TAC Flashlight

When it comes to flashlights, you can’t go wrong with a Fenix. The brand has been crafting precision LED flashlights that meet and exceed ANSI standards for quite some time. When it comes to a tactical flashlight from the brand, we recommend the PD35 TAC Flashlight. Pocket-sized (5.5″) and comfortable in the hand, the flashlight is a small, nimble tool—but it’s also a powerful one. In Turbo Output, the flashlight can produce 1000 lumens of light and throw that beam up to 200 meters. Not fun for an attacker when it gets turned toward their eyes. The pocket torch even features a Tactical Mode, where the light can be activated from the rear switch only to make operation simple and quick. $72


Maglite Mag-Tac CR123 Flashlight

Crafted with emergency responders, police, and military in mind, this pocket Maglite is trusted by the finest. It’s drop resistant, built with weather-resistant seals, and designed to last a lifetime. The Made in the USA flashlight is certified by the National Tactical Officers Association (NTAO), which means it is perfect for camping, hunting, or as a safety instrument. $55

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