Self-Defense 101: Our Tips for Making Certain That You Use Mace Properly On and Off Campus

Congratulations on choosing to protect your life, prepare for danger and defend yourself with mace if necessary. You made an important step to keep your studies and goals, not fear and worry, at the forefront of your mind on campus and off it. Mace will empower you and provide self-defense in case you are targeted or in a bad situation. So if you do carry this effective tool, you must know how to use it properly and safely within reason.

Why you need protection on campus

Feel good about taking measures to defend yourself when you consider these factors.

  • Students spend so much time on campus that certain buildings come to feel like home, so they let their guards down (forget to travel in packs, walk alone late at night, etc...).
  • Students must be funded in order to attend college, so thieves know they are likely to have cash or ATM accounts with money.
  • Students can be unfamiliar with new surroundings at the start of the school year and unaware of hot spots where seasoned criminals strike.
  • College campuses are full of parties, bars and frat houses where criminals may see a lot of relaxed or intoxicated people as easy targets.

Why you need protection off campus

  • Students are likely to pick up extra jobs off campus, away from extra campus police forces and restricted areas.
  • People you can call are likely to be other college students and affiliates who can not arrive quickly off campus.
  • GPS fails and public transportation systems enforce alternate routes all the time, so you could find yourself walking or driving in strange territories.
  • Criminals target smartphones and if you find yourself in a battle for yours, you can not call police or 911.

Mace is an ideal defense when you use it properly and keep it within reach.

Tip 1: If you can not find it, you can not use it.

Mace can't do its job when it's stuck between old papers in the glove compartment and buried in a backpack. You must be able to access it quickly where you are.

Decide where you will keep your canisters and products. Then, stick to these places and do not change. You want it to become second nature to reach to these places for self-defense.

Tip 2: Mace must be kept at room temperature.

Mace should not linger in the car in sweltering climates or summer temperatures. Like any aerosol, the canister could explode. Or, the chemicals may interact and leak beyond the seal. Any inadvertent contact could harm you at best and incapacitate you at worst.

Mace can also freeze, or slow down, when temperatures drop. You don't want to run to an old can in the car and find ice bits barely squirt past the can. Get used to carrying it with you on your person as much as possible.

Tip 3: Key chain products are ideal carry solutions.

Key chain products are ideal for everyone to start with, especially drivers. Most people keep house and car keys handy even when they forego cats and backpacks. This method also accounts for common assault situations, which happen as people go from place to place or leave home.

Tip 4: Know travel standards.

Mace can not travel with you onto a plane when it's time to head home from college or get away on break. Airport security considers it a weapon. You can store a 4-ounce unit in checked baggage. Stay on the safe side: Check with airlines to avoid potential detainment and luggage seizures.

Tip 5: Store sprays throughout your home and person.

Arm yourself according to how much space you have. You'll need more for an apartment than a dorm room. Invest in jackets, coats and bags with zippers to keep it stored in things you have most often.

Tip 6: Don't let your protection harm your furry friends.

Mace should always remain out of reach of pets. Your animals could easily mistake the canisters and cans for toys. The results could be fatal for small animals and traumatic for big dogs. Do not lock it away, but keep it in drawers and closets or on high hooks for key chain products.

Tip 7: Prevent your weapon from use against you.

If an attacker manages to wrench your canister away from you, keep your eyes and mouth closed. We know this is easier said than done. Once a volatile situation starts, your heart races and adrenaline rushes. You never know what you'll do.

Tip 8: Practice makes perfect.

Mace delivers painful irritants to stop criminals, thieves and other weirdos in their tracks. It delivers an unexpected shock to attackers. Mace balances the scales to give you a shot at getting away. However, we recommend you don't wait until an attack to spray it for the first time.

Tip 9: Aim for your opponent's head, not their feet.

Always practice your self-defense outdoors and practice often.

  • Point you canister away from you.
  • Know how the SAFETY feature works and how to dismantle it quickly.
  • Go for strong, 1-2 second blasts instead of fast bursts.
  • Aim the spray horizontally, not up and down, since you want to target your attacker's face.

Tip 10: Make confidence your first defense.

Mace is not fatal. It also can't cause devastating, permanent injury all by itself. You can feel far more comfortable with it than you can with a firearm. You do not have to go through special classes and licensing programs to acquire it.

So now that you have protection within arm's reach, relax. Expect the best while knowing you can handle the worst. Mace is there if you need it, and this should make you walk with strong confidence that just might make the bad guys avoid you.

Affiliate Disclosure: I am an affiliate of, Instant Checkmate, and Intelius. This means that I receive a commission if you click on a link on my website and make a purchase from one of these companies. However, this does not influence my reviews or opinions of these companies. I only recommend products and services that I believe are of high quality and value.

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