The Best Bear Sprays of 2019

Table of Contents

Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! Well, I can’t help you out much with the first two, but what I can do is talk to you about bear spray. Of course, you hope that you never have to use it, but if you do encounter a bear in the wild, bear spray can literally be a life saver. We all remember what happened to the protagonist of the Werner Herzog’s documentary Grizzly Man…but if you do not have a close relationship with a bear and even may if you do, you’ll want some protection. So for those of us that want to leave our camping trip alive and well, here are the best bear sprays on the market for 2019. Let’s go!

Best Bear Spray

Editor’s Pick
SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray
SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray
SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray

With a 30 foot range, 45 grams of spray per burst and a holster included, the SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray has a fail rate 30% lower than other brands. 

Doesn't expire

Top Contender
Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray
Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray
Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray

With a 35-foot range, the Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray definitely lived up to my expectations. 

Doesn't expire

Best For Grizzlies
Udap Bear Spray
Udap Bear Spray
Udap Bear Spray

Invented by a grizzly bear attack survivor, this Udap Bear Spray works on all bear species, especially grizzlies. 

Doesn't expire

Best For Hiking
Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray
Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray
Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray

With a comfortable tactical holster, the Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray is ideal for long hikes. 

Doesn't expire

Best For Black Bears
Personal Security Products Bear Repellent
Personal Security Products Bear Repellent
Personal Security Products Bear Repellent

The mostly widely distributed bear species in North America, black bears are no match for the Personal Security Products Bear Repellent which has an awesome 20 foot range! 

Doesn't expire

Editor’s Pick

SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray

50% stronger than police spray, the SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray is perfect for any type of bear you encounter on your camping trip. Just make sure you point it in the right direction, as it’s fail rate is 30% less than top competitors! 

Pros: The SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray will work within 30 feet, the industry standard. The 7.9 ounce bottle blasts about 45 grams per burst of 2% Major Capsaicinoids. Plus, a belt holster is included so you can keep it on you at all times. 

Cons: Unfortunately, the SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray doesn’t have the longest shelf life. 

Shop Amazon
SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray
SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray
SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray

With a 30 foot range, 45 grams of spray per burst and a holster included, the SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray has a fail rate 30% lower than other brands. 

Top Contender

Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray

Isn’t it ironic when you buy a product, hoping you’ll never have to use it? Well, the Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray has a shelf life of three years, so even if you don’t use it this camping trip, you know it’s good to bring on next year’s. 

Pros: The Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray has a 35-foot range, which is one of the highest ranges I’ve ever seen from a bear spray. It only weighs 1.15 pounds, so it won’t weigh you down too much if you’re hiking. Plus, it’s approved by the Environmental Protection Agency, which I think is really important, especially for an outdoorsman like yourself! 

Cons: The Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray doesn’t come with a holster, so you may want to buy one separately, adding to the cost. 

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Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray
Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray
Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray

With a 35-foot range, the Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray definitely lived up to my expectations. 

Best For Grizzlies

Udap Bear Spray

Grizzly bears at only a little over three feet high when on all fours, but they weigh up to 600 pounds, so if one comes your way, you might be in trouble. Unless of course, you have the Udap Bear Spray, invented by a survivor of an attack from, you guessed it, a grizzly bear. 

Pros: The Udap Bear Spray has an amazing 35 foot range so you can fight the beast without getting too close. It comes with a Griz Guard Holster for easy carrying. Plus, it’s approved by the EPA, so you can have your bear spray without a side of guilt. 

Cons: I found the holster a bit uncomfortable, although I’m glad it exists in the first place. 

Shop Amazon
Udap Bear Spray
Udap Bear Spray
Udap Bear Spray

Invented by a grizzly bear attack survivor, this Udap Bear Spray works on all bear species, especially grizzlies. 

Best For Hiking

Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray

When you’re hiking, you want to be carrying as little as you can, but the Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray should definitely make the cut. It gives you 8.1 ounces of bear protection in a convenient bottle, so you don’t need to worry about bear attacks. 

Pros: The Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray contains 2% Major Capsaicinoids, the industry standard. It has an impressive four year shelf life, so it’ll last a while. Finally, the Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray has a range of 32 feet, higher than most of it’s competitors, for maximum coverage. 

Cons: Although I’m really impressed with the Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray in general, I did find that the bottle was a bit leaky, which could be a huge problem considering how powerful it is. 

Related: Security Tips For Hikers 

Shop Amazon
Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray
Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray
Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray

With a comfortable tactical holster, the Counter Assault Bear Repellent Spray is ideal for long hikes. 

Best For Black Bears

Personal Security Products Bear Repellent

Weighing anywhere from 90 to 180 pounds, black bears live all across the United States, and they can be quite dangerous to come in contact with. But they’re no match for the Personal Security Products Bear Repellent, which has an impressive range of 20 feet

Pros: Available in a canister of nine ounces, the Personal Security Products Bear Repellent is approved by the EPA, so you know it won’t harm the environment. It’s ideal for black bears, even from 20 feet away. Plus, it’s price is very reasonable, much lower than the industry average. 

Cons: The Personal Security Products Bear Repellent doesn’t come with a holster, so you may want to buy one separately. 

Related: Security Tips For Campers

Shop Amazon
Personal Security Products Bear Repellent
Personal Security Products Bear Repellent
Personal Security Products Bear Repellent

The mostly widely distributed bear species in North America, black bears are no match for the Personal Security Products Bear Repellent which has an awesome 20 foot range! 

Bear Spray Methodology

Bear Spray Methodology
Bear Spray Methodology

What are some best practices when buying a bear spray? Here are some key factors to look out for:

  • Range: The average bear spray that I tested had a range of a little over 30 feet, so that is the standard you should be looking for. Remember, you want to stay as far away from the bear as possible!
  • EPA approval: Make sure your bear spray is approved by the Environmental Protection Agency, especially if you’re using it at a national park or state campground.
  • Holster: It’s useful to have your bear spray on you at all times, so look for one with a comfortable holster that’s easy to access 24/7.
  • Major Capsaicinoids percentage: The percentage of Major Capsaicinoids in a pepper spray measure it’s effectiveness— they’re actually the chemical component of peppers that make them hot. The majority of pepper sprays have 2% Major Capsaicinoids, and while that doesn’t sound like a lot, trust me, you do not want to get this stuff in your eyes.
  • Dimensions: Especially if you’re carrying around your bear spray with you all day, you want to make sure it’s not too big. The majority of bear sprays that I’ve reviewed were about nine inches high and five inches across.
  • Weight: The same goes for weight. This may be more of a personal preference, but in my opinion, the lighter the bear spray, the better.
  • Shelf life: Not all bear sprays provide a shelf life on their website’s description, so this can be challenging, but try to make sure that the bear spray has a shelf life of three years or more. Remember, you most likely won’t be using it anytime soon, so you don’t want to have to get a brand new bottle when you haven’t even cracked open the last one.
  • Cost: Bear sprays cost about $38 on average, although I’ve seen ones that fall in the range of $33 to about $45. Of course, some of them don’t include holsters, which could explain a lower price.

Bear Spray Tips

If you’re using a bear spray, it’s probably because a bear is approaching you, so it’s best to learn about what to do before you depart for your annual camping trip. Here are a few best practices that I’ve learned over the years:

  • Store inside: Many bear sprays don’t work properly under 40 degrees Fahrenheit, so if you’re camping in the colder months, don’t store your bear spray outside. Instead, keep it in your vehicle, in a warm pack or otherwise inside. If you want to have it on you during the fall or winter, make sure to place it under your jacket so it can absorb some of your body heat, as that will keep it’s range as long as possible.
  • If a bear approaches: Never run away from a bear— instead, back away, spraying your bear spray in short bursts towards the beast. Most likely, they will back down from the appearance and sound of the bear spray alone. If the bear is super close to you, spray it in it’s face directly.
  • Expiration dates: Like food, bear sprays expire eventually, so make sure that yours is good to go before you pack into the car for your big trip.

Recap of the Best Bear Sprays of 2019

Before you go on your outdoor adventure, selecting an effective bear spray is essential. I hope this answered all of your questions and more, but if you have anything you’d still like to find out, please leave a comment below. Thanks and hope to hear from you soon!

Gabe Turner

Gabe Turner

Gabe Turner is an attorney and journalist with a passion for home tech and secure, efficient living. Since graduating from NYU Law, he has maintained a paradoxical existence of trying to live life adventurously while remaining staunchly risk-averse. He is torn by the dual desires of wanting to only be in Brooklyn writing about housing policy and smart home tech and aspiring to visit his friends scattered across the globe. Gabe believes that stable, safe communities are the cornerstone to a vibrant and healthy society, and it is this passion that brought him to contribute to Security Baron.

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