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Types of Body Armor from Safe Life Defense

Types of Body Armor from Safe Life Defense

Posted by Safe Life Defense on 18th May 2022

What is Body Armor?

The short answer to what is “body armor” means is anything that protects a body from firearms, knives and blunt force attacks.

A more complete description of body armor is an important piece of equipment worn to protect against penetrating attacks by humans, animals and accidental impacts. The attacks can come in the form of a knife, bullet, puncturing devices like an ice pick, blunt force items like a baseball bat, club or a stick, teeth and claws. Accidental impacts can be a falling object, or an object catapulted by wind or hurled from an explosion. Bomb-defusing squads wear body armor for this reason. Our customers have told us that the vests have even protected them from motorcycle accidents.

Body armor also comes in four main types with subcategories or “classes” in each one. Safe Life Defense covers these types to provide the maximum amount of choice for protection and comfort. The types of body armor are:

  1. Soft
  2. Composite
  3. Hybrid
  4. Hard

The U.S. National Institute of Justice (NIJ) has established different performance levels of body armor based on threat levels. Visit the NIJ’s website to learn more about how they rank and rate armor.

Body armor comes in panels. It can be any one of the four types mentioned above. Multiple panels can be worn at one time for increased protection. While this adds some weight, many feel the increased level of protection is worth it. How much weight depends on the type of body armor.

Carriers hold the armor in place. Safe Life Defense’s carriers have openings to insert the body armor panels. They come in a variety of styles for different professions, including concealable, first response, tactical, high-vis first response and uniform shirt.

Soft body armor offers the most flexibility. Safe Life Defense uses para-aramid fiber in its body armor, which is 5 times stronger than steel and has a higher melting point of 750 degrees Fahrenheit. Our research shows that this custom blend delivers superior protection to other soft body armor of the same weight and thickness.

Soft body armor restricts movement the least of the four types. The trade-off is that soft body armor offers less protection than the others. Safe Life Defense Self Structured™ Multi-Threat level IIIA panels offer very good protection from bullets and are resistant to strike and slashing attacks. All our vests come in sizes 4XS-7XL and offers 15% more coverage area than competitors.

Safe Life Defense’s HyperlineTM series of body armor is super thin and designed to be worn under regular clothing for concealment. Hyperline's Dyneema® Force Multiplier, DuPont® Para Aramid and a unique blend of resin and polymer technologies offer Level IIIA protection and blunt force mitigation. HyperlineTM is 100% made in the USA with a proprietary manufacturing process that sets this product apart from the competition.

What is FRAS™?

FRAS™ is lighter than steel armor and offers a level of flexibility not found with sheets of steel or ceramic. The armor also brings side coverage that might be found only in soft armor and the protection needed front and back. Safe Life Defense guarantees this is the most comfortable and adaptive rifle body armor ever worn.

Side Panels

If you already have body armor and you want more protection, Safe Life Defense offers the HyperlineTM in side panels. They also offer side armor panels in IIIA, IIA+ and FRAS as well. Secure these in place with side panel straps for added protection.


When maximum protection is the minimum requirement, Safe Life Defense offers Level IV ICW Rifle Plate armor. When used with IIIA or IIIA+ armor, these plates will stop 30-06 steel-core armor penetrating rounds. These plates can be added to armor from Safe Life Defense. The anti-spalling coating stops bullet fragments from spewing all over the place, providing further protection.

FRAS™ Plate

Safe Life Defense’s Flexible Rifle Armor System (FRAS™) meets the protection level of plate armor with this add-in panel. Use it as a stand-alone plate or in addition to Safe Life Defense’s soft body armor. When combined, it provides III+ protection against threats up to .308 & 7.62x54r. As a stand-alone, the FRAS plate stops .223 and 5.56 rounds, including Green Tip, M193, M855, SS109 and 7.62×39 lead core.

Backpack Armor

Protect your back without showing any kind of armor with Safe Life Defense’s backpack armor. These panels are available in FRAS or Levels IIIA and IIIA+ and are specifically cut to fit neatly inside a standard backpack.


Safe Life Defense offers a variety of lightweight and modular carriers that can hold all of their armor panels. Choose from a variety of colors ranging from OD green and tan for camo to high-vis blaze yellow for first responders.

The Safe Life Defense concealable carrier is a no-frills vest that rides easily under everything from a shirt to a suit. Safe Life’s most popular vest, it can be worn overtly or covertly.

Tactical Carrier

This is the vest for people who know they are heading into a threatening situation. MOLLE webbing, extra pockets for side panels and places for patches are designed with taking care of business in mind. While it may never be needed, each tactical vest can have a custom drag handle installed on the back.

First Response

First responders do enter hostile locations. Protect the crew from bullets, knives and blunt force attacks while making sure everyone sees the responder. The high-vis yellow vest stands out even in low light. Each vest comes with pockets for holding emergency equipment and patches in the front and back so the wearer can be clearly identified.

Uniform Shirt

Choose from MOLLE webbing or extra pockets in the uniform vest meant to be worn over the clothing. It is cut to look professional while allowing the wearer to stay safe with any of the Safe Life Defense armor panels.

The Safe Life Defense Guarantee

Safe Life Defense is so confident about the performance, fit and comfort of their body armor that they offer a 30-day guarantee. If it does not fit properly, they will exchange it for another one. Their guarantee extends to incidents as well. If a customer is shot wearing the armor during the five years the regular warranty covers, Safe Life Defense will replace the armor for free when it’s returned along with a police report about the incident.