Updated: August 02, 2020

Bears may look great in a movie or as a stuffed animal on your bed, they are not the kind of creature you want to encounter while out for a walk or while you are camping. Bears are extremely dangerous, and this is why you want to make sure you can protect yourself should you come across one of these woodland creatures.

The old wives tales about playing dead aren’t going to do you very much good. You need a product that is going to help you to be safe should you come across a bear, and this is why many have opted to look at bear sprays. These products help to deter a bear from approaching you, as they act very much in the same way that mace keeps away a would-be attacker. It truly is a product that any outdoor enthusiast should carry with them.

Choosing the Best Bear Spray

While you may realize it is a good idea to carry this product with you whenever you go camping or on a hike, it is also important to understand that not every product you find will be what you need. A little information can help you to choose the right product for yourself. Consider that this may save your life one day, so getting something that works best for you is definitely an important first step. Here are some of the key factors to consider when choosing a good bear spray repellent.

  • Easy to Use. This is probably the most important factor of all. The last thing you want in a dangerous situation is for you to find it difficult to activate the trigger mechanism to spray the product that the animal. Consider that you only have fractions of a second before of their can be on top of you, so an easy to use bear repellent is absolutely essential. Your life literally depends upon it.
  • Capacity. The capacity is important for one primary reason. The more spray that you have available, the more you can use should a bear or a group of bears come after you. Most cans of range somewhere between 7 ounces and 13 ounces. Obviously, the higher capacity means the more amount of spray that you have.
  • Distance. Besides capacity, another major factor related to this is the distance the product will spray. The very best options out there give you a range of about 35 feet, which is something you may desire. The closer the bear is to you the more dangerous it is, so keeping it further away is quite important. However, it is also important to realize that the further the spray is a way the less dense the cloud may be. What you may find is a range of somewhere between 20 to 25 feet is the ideal choice.
  • Safety. You have to also consider that safety matters for you as well. Having a safety cap or some trigger mechanism that protects the product from accidentally discharging is important. The last thing you want is for this to discharge and for you to be incapacitated. Finding a product that provides you optimal protection is a good idea.
  • Accessories. Some products you find will have holsters or other accessories that help to secure the product to you. This can help to make it a lot easier to access in an emergency situation, and also ensures that you don’t have to carry the can in your hand. A quality holster should be one that gives you ease of access, snaps securely to your belt or harness, and is lightweight and durable.

What is the Best Bear Spray on the Market?

Now that you understand some of the factors to consider when choosing a good bear repellent spray, here are some of the best options available on the market. These have been chosen based upon many of the factors you read above.

#1 Sabre Frontiersman Bear Spray 7.9 oz

Sabre Frontiersman Bear Spray 7.9 oz Review This product made the top of our list for many reasons. It starts with the fact that SABRE is one of the best manufacturers of personal safety products on the market today. It is trusted by both law enforcement officials and park rangers, which lets you know that you can count on its effectiveness.

This product was designed to maximum stopping power. No doubt that a charging bear is as dangerous as it gets, and you need a product will provide you with a chemical that will stop that air in its tracks. With 2.0% major capsaicinoids included, you were getting the maximum amount of chemical allowed by the EPA. No bear is going to keep charging you with that sprayed at it.

What separates this product from many, is that it has eliminated more than 30% of the failures that other products have experienced. No doubt that you can’t take the risk of your bear spray not working, and this is why so many have come to depend on this product to keep them safe.

This product is already been tested in some of the most hostile and firemen’s, including in both Alaska and Montana. It provides a range of as much as 35 feet away, and houses a 7.9 ounce can. A heavy fog is emitted, giving you eczema protection, and the shelf life is as much as three years.

The fact that it has removed many of the failings that other products have encountered is enough reason to put your trust in this one. When you are out in the woods, you want to make sure that you are not hoping your product works. You need something dependable, and this SABRE has proven to be one of the very best.

#2 Counter Assault Bear Repellent

Counter Assault Bear Repellent Review The SABRE is an outstanding product, but it just narrowly edges this Counter Assault bear repellent. In fact, this is one of the most highly trusted products on the market, and is used by a wide range of professionals who need connection from animals such as bears.

It contains the same maximum chemical formula that protects against dangerous animals like bears, and gives you an outstanding range of up to 32 feet. One thing you will truly love about this is that it gives a continuous spray of up to 9.2 seconds, as you get a canister of 10.2 ounces. That is one of the largest capacity canisters available. That is plenty of punch to stop a charging bear, and is a longer duration than the other products you will find on the market today. That is one of the things that really attracted us to this product.

The bear spray comes in a nylon holster which easily attaches to your belt or other strap. It’s lightweight, so it’s not cumbersome in any way, but is durable enough to handle the rough terrain of the wilderness. This product is made to give you the ability to reach your bear repellent quickly, something you need when you are facing a hostile black or brown bear.

Included with the can is a safety cap. This helps to protect from the product from accidentally discharging, however, it can be a little difficult to remove the cap. You may want to practice removing it a few times, because you don’t want to be fidgeting this thing when a bear is approaching you.

This is absolutely one of the best products on the market today. A top two or three by anyone’s standards. You will be quite satisfied with his results, especially when you are in a dangerous situation.

#3 Udap Bear Spray Safety Orange

Udap Bear Spray Safety Orange Review This is one of the most highly recognized of any in our review. The bright orange can makes it quite distinguishable, but this is not just a product known for its design. This bear spray is one of the most effective on the market and is one of the most trusted for those looking for survival tools.

The one thing that separates this particular product from many you will find on the market is that it was originally designed by someone who was actually attacked by a bear. The attack survivor wanted to ensure that no one would have to face the same kind of danger he did, opting to develop one of the best products on the market. This spray releases one of the highest amounts of active ingredients you will find, and does so in a very short period of time. This make sure that you get maximum effectiveness in a short duration, giving you that added advantage to get away.

The spray is so effective that it could Defend against two or three bears and one time. The ranges up to 30 feet in length and will stop a charging bear in its tracks, making it difficult for the bear debris. It contains 10% Oleoresin Capsicum and 2% Major Capcaicinoids, making it one of the best bear repellent sprays you will find.

This is extremely simple to use no matter what your level of expertise is. With you are an expert woodsman or someone who is out for a hike for the first time, you were going to find this to be highly effective product for you. It comes in an affordable price and is something you should have in any survival kit.

#4 Guard Alaska Bear Spray

Guard Alaska Bear Spray Review This is another great product whose formula is approved by the EPA. This not only ensures that you are getting maximum protection, but that you are able to use the product safely. Plus, it is safe for the environment as well, neither containing any byproduct that is flammable or which depletes the ozone. In fact, this product was endorsed by the Alaska Science and Technology Foundation because of its eco-friendly formula.

While it is nice to have a product that is safe for the environment, you did by this to be green. The reason you want to bear spray is to protect you should a bear come chasing after you, and you can count on this to be a product that will deter a bear, stopping it in its tracks.

The product comes in a 9 ounce can, allowing you to use it up to nine times with a one second blast each time. This product has been thoroughly tested on bears up to 800 pounds with great results, and is effective up to a maximum of 20 feet away. In fact, the maximum arranged you can even reach is no more than 25 feet.

The product comes with a 4” x 2” holster that allows you to easily slide the canister into the pouch. It is easily attached to a belt or strap, and is accessible in an emergency. A nice design makes it so you have your bear spray when you need it the most.

The formula is extremely effective, providing you with the maximum amount of bear repellent chemicals allowed by the EPA. Truly a good product for any person heading to the great outdoors.

#5 SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray 9.2 oz

SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray 9.2 oz Review SABRE produces some of the best survival products you are going to find on the market. This company produces some outstanding campers praise, and this is why you can count on this bear spray to be highly effective. It is perfect for both educational purposes and personal safety.

This product is made with the highest grade formula available, with a 2% major Capsaicinoids included. This, according to EPA guidelines, is the highest grade possible and the most effective against bears.

This product has been tested and some of the most extreme circumstances, including in both Alaska and Montana, and has been proven to be 99.99% effective at stopping bears instantly. It will even scare away a charging bear, and works on a wide variety of bears, including polar bears, brown bears, and black bears.

The product has an effective range of up to 10 m, and can sprays at a speed of 30 ft./s. 9.2 ounce canister packs a big punch, producing a heavy fog that provides a 40% coverage. This will cause a bear to be blinded in seconds, making it difficult for it to breathe or see.

The one thing you will like about the spray is that the fog is dispersed far enough away from you to prevent you from getting a backwash. It provides anywhere from two up to seven bursts, which should allow you to scare off more than one bear of necessary. Definitely a great choice for someone who is looking for protection when they are out hiking or camping.

#6 Counter Assault Bear Spray

Counter Assault Bear Spray Review This product has not only been proven to be effective against bears, but can work on a wide variety of animal, including wild dogs and wolves. When out in the woods, you want something that you know will work on almost any wild animal you may encounter, and this is one you can trust.

The ranges anywhere from 12 to 32 feet, ideal for determining a charging bear. It is easy to use and works effectively in almost any kind of terrain or other condition.

The formula contains 2% capsaicin, the highest grade possible for a product of this nature. The spray provides for a 9.2 second burst, which proved to be highly effective, even against an extremely strong, aggressive, charging bear. When fractions of a second count, you can count on this product to deliver a big punch.

The product comes with a safety cap that prevents any accidental leakage. This not only prevents product from being lost or getting onto your hands, but also helps to me pain the pressure inside the can. The nylon holster is easy to strap to yourself, ensuring that you can reach the product quickly in an emergency. It easily attaches over your shoulder strap to your belt, and includes a glow-in-the-dark safety tie. Again, when fractions of a second count, this product is looking out for your safety.

This is one of the most effective and trusted products on the market. If you were going to be spending some time out in the wilderness where it is likely that you could come across a wild animal, this is a product you can count on to protect you.

#7 UDAP Bear Spray

UDAP Bear Spray Review UDAP has three products in this review, and this is another great example of the kind of dependable bear spray you need. This is an outstanding manufacturer, one that has been trusted by campers and hikers for years. A great survival product, and this one is no exception.

This product also contains a 2% CRC, giving you the maximum deterrent you can buy, helping you to stop an oncoming bear. Plus, you will love the fact that it provides a range of up to 30 feet. The canister holds 7.9 ounces of the product, and the total weight is 11 ounces. Nothing that is cumbersome to carry with you. Plus, it comes in an easy to attach holster that is durable and makes accessibility to the product a snap.

You also like that the safety clip is glow-in-the-dark. This makes it easier for you to be able to loosen and find in an emergency. When seconds count, you can’t be messing around, and this product is made to help you to have the maximum level of safety.

There is about three seconds of spray inside each can, allowing for half second blasts. It would be more than enough to stop almost any kind of large animal. Just make sure that you give yourself some distance, as the blowback can cause a great deal of irritation to your skin and eyes. This is why it is necessary that you pay attention to the direction of the wind before using.

A trusted manufacturer that has developed another great product. If you are heading outside, even for a walk, this is a product you will feel comfortable knowing that you are well protected from large wild animals.

#8 Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray

Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray Review Mace has long established themselves as one of the leaders in providing personal protection. Yet, they have a great line of personal survival products as well, which includes this great bear spray.

This product uses the maximum formula allowed by the EPA, but the product still provides a safe formula that acts as the perfect deterrent to keep that bear away. It’s both safe and humane to the bear, ensuring that you stop it from attacking you.

One thing you will like is the range. With a range of up to 35 feet, you don’t have to worry about the bear getting close to you before you can start to spray. In a situation where seconds matter most, keeping that there at a distance is imperative, and this product allows you to do just that.

The formula uses a 2.0% capsaicinoid concentration, the maximum allowed in any product. This makes it so that is not only effective against bears, against almost any large wild animals, including wolves, mountain lions, and other dangerous predators. This gives you the kind of deterrent that is perfect for almost any excursion to the wilderness.

The canister in minutes of fog that acts as a barrier between you and the bear. The can contains 9 ounces of the spray, and it takes six full seconds to completely discharge the entire contents. That gives you five or six short verse or one large burst, stopping a bear up to 800 pounds from charging anywhere near you. Plus, it is safe for the environment. It’s lightweight, works effectively, and comes at a reasonable price. It’s a great option for sure.

#9 Personal Security Products GGBR9-C 9oz

Personal Security Products GGBR9-C 9oz Review This product is designed to work on all species of bears, and has become a popular choice among many wilderness enthusiasts. It comes in a 9 ounce bottle that has a range of 15 to 20 feet. That is smaller than many of the other options available out there, but it still comes with a powerful punch.

This product is recommended by the Alaska Science and Technology Foundation, not only because of how effective the chemical is that is used to deter bears, and also because of its eco-friendliness. It is nonflammable and can stains no ozone-depleting chemicals, making it an eco-friendly choice. If you are a person who is concerned about the firemen and wants to use a chemical that is safer bears and its surroundings, this is a great choice.

The safety trigger is protected by a case that prevents accidental discharge. This will keep you from accidentally releasing the chemical while trying to remove it from a holster. However, there have been reports of leaking by some who have purchased a product.

This is a powerful chemical, so it should be handled with care. However, that chemical is exactly what will help save you should a bear come your way. This product provides the maximum protection that is allowed by the EPA, and is extremely effective against any type of bear. It even provides great success against other types of predatory animals.

Whether you are a person who is going to spend a weekend out camping or is just headed out to the woods for a hike, you will find that this is the perfect product to carry with you. It is lightweight and highly effective. Just ensure that you have tested it and practice removing the safety cap to prevent yourself from having to struggle to remove it in an emergency. A good quality product for sure.

#10 UDAP 18HP Super Magnum Bear Spray 13.4 Ounces

UDAP 18HP Super Magnum Bear Spray Review This is the third of the great UDAP products related to bear deterrence. One of the things you will truly love about this product is that it has a maximum capacity of 13.4 ounces. That not only gives you a capacity greater than almost any other product you will find, but ensures you can use this several times and on several different pairs. You never know if there is more than one air around, and this product will help you to fend off three or more.

The range reaches up to 35 feet, and provides a fog that will help you from a potential attack. It contains the maximum effective chemical allowed by the EPA to help deter bears. The spray duration is about seven seconds, meaning that were getting a large amount released when you spray. This gives you a large area that is covered, acting as a shield to protect you from wild animals that are dangerous.

What you will find is that the fog that is produced is a lot denser than virtually any other option. This is one of the main features that need this stand out. You can count on optimal protection because the dense fog was going to act as a shield to help deter animals from approaching you.

The one major challenge we found with this product is its trigger mechanism. We found that despite having a large capacity, there are issues with it releasing the entire amount, as the trigger is not built to handle this capacity. It is still an amazing option, but could be much better had they developed a better mechanism to discharged chemical.

One other note about the trigger mechanism. Once depressed, you have to depress it again to shut the spray off. Some find that a good feature, others don’t. It’s really a matter of preference.

Comparison Chart

Bear SprayProsCons
#1 Sabre Frontiersman Bear Spray 7.9 oz
  • Provides an effective range of this much is 35 feet.
  • Provides success where other products are failing.
  • Comes with a shelf life of up to three years.
  • Provides the maximum protection afforded in a chemical of this nature.
  • Used by law enforcement and wildlife officials.
  • Protective plastic Can be hard to pull off, even breaking at times.
  • Be careful of the blowback, as it can incapacitate you.
#2 Counter Assault Bear Repellent
  • Proven results, as there are a vast number of people who can attest to its effectiveness.
  • Provides one of the largest capacities in terms of product, containing 10.2 ounces.
  • Provides a continuous spray of up to nine seconds.
  • Extremely effective formula that works.
  • Safety Can be difficult to remove.
  • The holster the canister slides into is a bit tight, taking it difficult to pull the spray out in an emergency.
#3 Udap Bear Spray Safety Orange
  • Provides an effective stream up to 30 feet away.
  • Comes with one of the highest grade combination of chemicals.
  • Easy to use for any level of experience.
  • Sprays a quick burst and can fend off more than one bear.
  • Comes from a trusted manufacturer.
  • The case is difficult to remove from the spray.
  • Quite uncomfortable to carry, meaning that you may wind up leaving at home.
#4 Guard Alaska Bear Spray
  • Able to deter a bear of update hundred pounds.
  • Provides nine bursts of one second each.
  • A product that is safe for the environment.
  • Endorsed by scientific organizations.
  • Range of up to only 20 feet is a major con.
  • Some report having issues with delivery.
#5 SABRE Frontiersman Bear Spray 9.2 oz
  • Provides up to 30 m in range and covers 40%.
  • Provides the maximum amount of chemical allowed to scare away a bear.
  • Comes from a quality manufacturer that has been known to provide some of the best survival
  • products on the market.
  • Easily fits inside the holster.
  • Can provide as many as seven bursts.
  • A lot more expensive than many of the other comparable brands you will find.
  • Some have reported challenges with the can not properly pressurized, something you surely don’t need an emergency.
#6 Counter Assault Bear Spray
  • Provides up to 9.2 seconds per burst.
  • A little folding knife is included, a nice added accessory.
  • Easily slides into the holster, and the holster is easy to attach, making it easy for you to take the product anywhere.
  • Provides a great deal of punch.
  • It takes a little practice to get used to using this product.
  • Not much else to complain about.
#7 UDAP Bear Spray
  • Effectively works with more than just bears.
  • Provides a great deal of range, up to 30 feet.
  • Easy to attach to yourself and lightweight.
  • Comes with the maximum amount of repellent allowed by the EPA.
  • Not designed for smaller animals like raccoons or foxes.
  • Lee allows for as many as six bursts of no more than half a second.
#8 Mace Brand Bear Pepper Spray
  • Anecdotal evidence supports how effective this product is. Very reliable.
  • Will stop any large predator in its tracks.
  • Provides a long-range, as much is 35 feet.
  • It spreads very much like a fire extinguisher, making it so that you don’t need a direct shot at the Bears face to be effective
  • Does not come with a holster.
  • The spray comes out quickly, so make sure you get a direct shot at the bear’s face.
#9 Personal Security Products GGBR9-C 9oz
  • The chemicals designed to be used with any type of bear.
  • Safety cap helps to protect against accidental discharge.
  • Comes with the maximum amount of chemical repellent allowed by law.
  • Eco-friendly and non-flammable.
  • Provides a range of only about 20 feet maximum.
  • Safety cap can be difficult to remove the times.
#10 UDAP 18HP Super Magnum Bear Spray 13.4 Ounces
  • One of the highest capacity products you will find at 13.4 ounces.
  • Can shoot with a range of up to 35 feet.
  • Produces a very dense falling that should deter almost any predatory animal.
  • Provides the maximum amount of chemical allowed to deter bears
  • The trigger mechanism reduces the burst.
  • Trigger mechanism does not shut off unless manually depressed again. Much more difficult fire in first because of this mechanism.

Most Frequently Asked Questions

What is bear spray?

A bear spray is a product that helps to scare bears away much in the same way that Mace works on a would-be attacker. It irritates the eyes, sinus cavities, and respiratory system so that the bear is unable to see and finds it difficult to breathe. This gives you time to get away, preventing the bear from being able to attack or chase you. It is the perfect kind of product for a person to carry who spends any time in the wilderness at all.

Does bear spray really work?

The truth is that these products are highly effective. There are many anecdotal stories of individuals who have used these products to fend off a bear that was chasing them. In fact, some of the best bear spray repellents will also work on other animals, such as wolves and mountain lions.

How long does bear spray last?

This is dependent upon the product you purchase. Some will give you up to as much as nine or 10 second of continuous spray. Others may last only three or four seconds. This is dependent upon the capacity of the canister and how much of the product is discharged per second.

Where can I buy bear spray?

Almost any wilderness store will carry products like this. You can also find these products online at places like Amazon. If you are wanting to know more about a product or purchasing it, but would like to purchase online where you are more likely to find it for cheaper price, it is still to your advantage to go into the store. You can talk to a salesclerk about the benefits of one product over another, helping you to make a more informed decision. The factors above gave you some idea about what product may work best for you, but it is still a good idea to pick the brain of an expert. This is the advantage of heading into a wilderness store can provide you.

How much does bear spray cost?

Most of these bear repellents cost somewhere between $20 all the way up to $50. There are some that are a little cheaper and some that are a little more expensive. However, don’t let price be the only factor. Consider that this is your life you’re talking about protecting.

Who makes the best bear spray?

There are many great products out there, but one manufacturer that is consistently rated as the top is UDAP. If you have read this entire review, you have seen that they have three products that are included in our list of best products. It is because they make an outstanding group of bear repellent personal protection products.

What is bear spray made out of?

The primary chemical that is using this product is capsaicin. This is a highly effective chemical that will drop a bear much like a person is dropped when they are sprayed with pepper spray. It is so potent that the formula can contain no more than 2% of this chemical according to EPA guidelines. This is enough to stop the bear in its tracks while also not causing permanent injury.

Can I fly with bear spray?

If it is stored underneath the plane in your suitcase then you can carry with you. You will not be able to carry this on the plane. It is too much of a safety hazard, especially if it should accidentally discharge with in the cabin space. Should this happen, you will cause a whole lot of people to become angry at you like quickly. That is why it should always be stored underneath the plane.

Is bear spray legal?

Of course it is. This is one of the products that people purchase on a regular basis. It is effective, safe, and completely legal for you to buy. Consider though that this product is only legal for you to use on bearers and other while predatory animal. Don’t use it on your neighbor.

When to use bear spray?

If you come across a bear, then it is a good time to use this product. The most important part of using it is making sure that you discharge it only when the bear is within the effective range of the product. Don’t discharge it if the bear is 50 feet away. This will not work. Follow the directions and use according to the guidelines by the manufacturer.

Michel Pedneault

Michel Pedneault

Michel Pedneault has been blogging for more than three decades. He is one of the former lead writer of Tribunnews.com. He wrote thousand of reviews on various tools & gears. He is fond of travelling, adventures and discovering new things. You can reach him at twitter @pedneault

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