Personal Alarm Vs. Pepper Spray – Which is Best for You?


The world is not the safe place we would like it to be. Thankfully, most of us don't face imminent danger every day. Nevertheless, it is advisable to take precautions because thieves and muggers are out there.

Personal alarms and pepper sprays offer a non-lethal alternative for those who don't want to carry a firearm. Each of these options has its pros and cons. So, which of these two self-defense products would be best for you?

In this post, we weigh the advantages and disadvantages of these two products to help you make an informed decision.

Personal Alarm Pros and Cons

Personal alarms are straightforward electronic devices that emit a loud noise, around 120dB to 140dB, when triggered. The sound of the alarm will attract attention and catch an assailant off guard. And, as criminals don't want to get noticed, the sound of a personal alarm will send them running.


  • Reusable
  • Non-violent
  • No purchase restrictions
  • Can take on airplanes
  • Can take on college campuses
  • Can be used by children
  • Effective in most situations


  • Won't disable an attacker
  • Could be snatched away
  • Won't bring help in remote areas
  • Passive device
  • Batteries need replacing

Example Personal Alarm

She's Birdie Personal Alarm

She's Birdie Personal Alarm

The She's Birdie is a typical example of a personal alarm and one of the most popular on the market. The device incorporates a strobe light that flashes when the 130dB alarm is activated. The She Birdie comes with a keychain for attaching the device to a bag or belt loop.

Pepper Spray Pros and Cons

Pepper spray contains capsaicin, the same chemical that gives chili peppers heat. When sprayed in the face, pepper spray will cause a burning sensation in the eyes, nose, and throat, gagging, and shortness of breath. Consequently, pepper spray can be highly effective.

However, there are restrictions on the sale and use of pepper spray in most states. And self-defense sprays are illegal in some countries and not permitted on airplanes. You also need to be accurate to hit an assistant in the face with a burst of pepper spray, and strong wind can blow the stream off course.


  • Can stop assailants in their tracks
  • Can disable attackers
  • Can be used at a distance
  • Can be used against multiple attackers


  • Prohibited in some countries
  • Restrictions on the sale and use
  • Prohibited on airplanes
  • Prohibited in some campuses and municipal buildings
  • Need for accuracy
  • Useless if attacked from behind
  • Can be blown off course
  • Can blow back in your face
  • Not reusable

Example Pepper Spray

SABRE Advanced Pepper Spray Keychain

SABRE Advanced Pepper Spray Keychain

SBARE is probably the best-known pepper spray brand, and their Advanced Pepper Spray Keychain is one the most popular products of its type. The spray contains pepper spray, tear gas, and UV dye and ranges up to ten feet.


To sum up, pepper spray is undoubtedly the best of the two if you want to bring an attacker to their knees. But it causes temporary blindness, breathing difficulties, and pain. It is not lethal, but it is by no means passive. Furthermore, pepper spray can affect the user, innocent bystanders, and the target.

Then, there are restrictions on the purchase and use of pepper spray. You may not be able to take pepper spray into some buildings, on an airplane, or onto a college campus. And there are restrictions on who can buy these products.

On the other hand, personal alarms can be purchased by anyone and carried anywhere. And there is no risk of causing pain or injury to anyone.

So, a personal alarm would be best if you want an everyday-carry self-defense device that you can take anywhere. But if it's stopping power that you are after, pepper spray would be better. Alternatively, buy both, and then you can choose which self-defense option to carry and use in different circumstances.

Welcome to Best Personal Alarm Reviews

Best Personal Alarm Reviews is a site dedicated to helping you find the best personal safety alarm for you and your family.

Also called rape alarms, personal attack alarms, and self-defense alarms, these inexpensive devices deter attackers and attract attention in an emergency.

Feel free to take a look around. We have a comprehensive buyer’s guide and review page so you can compare twelve of the best personal alarms on the market.

We have also selected and reviewed the best devices for specific uses, such as camping, running, and for schools and clubs.

I hope our site helps you find the best personal alarm for your needs.


Founder and Editor

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