Good Thinking

BulletSafe's ball cap and T-shirt dress you in casual bulletproofing

BulletSafe bulletproof ball cap
BulletSafe bulletproof ball cap
View 3 Images
The ball cap's ballistic insert covers the front 1/3 of the hat
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The ball cap's ballistic insert covers the front 1/3 of the hat
BulletSafe bulletproof ball cap
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BulletSafe bulletproof ball cap
Prototype ballistic T-shirt
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Prototype ballistic T-shirt

We're not sure it says great things about our society, but we've been seeing more and more casual bulletproof clothing in recent years. BulletSafe is working to become a key player in that market. In December 2014, it launched a Kickstarter for what it calls the "world's first bulletproof baseball cap." Just over a year later, it's turning its attention to a bulletproof T-shirt. If your company softball team happens to play in a free-fire zone, you know who to call for uniforms.

BulletSafe closed out a successful Kickstarter for its cap last January and got deliveries rolling last month. Aimed primarily at law enforcement officers and security guards seeking something more casual than a combat helmet, the US$129 ball cap looks like a plain cap but provides frontal protection from various ammo, including .38, .40, 9mm, .45, and some .357 Magnums rounds.

Prototype ballistic T-shirt
Prototype ballistic T-shirt

BulletSafe's next move in casual bulletproofing is a T-shirt that looks like an unassuming sport shirt, save for the outline of the front ballistic panel, which BulletSafe says covers most of the heart and lungs. The shirt appears considerably more casual and comfortable than a full-blown vest, but it obviously provides limited protection.

"This product springs from a desire of some of our customers to have the maximum level of discretion," says BulletSafe president Tom Nardone.

BulletSafe won't be able to tack a "world's first" designation onto its shirt because there are a number of other bulletproof T-shirt products and projects out there. BulletSafe may get points on pricing, though.

In 2010, we saw some very interesting multinational research in making T-shirt fabric itself bulletproof. For an available retail bulletproof T, you can look to Amendment II, the same company behind the Ballistic Backpack and material for Garrison Bespoke's $20K bulletproof suit. Its X Shirt compression sport shirt provides more protection than BulletSafe's design, carrying both front and back ballistic inserts.

But Amendment II protection comes at a price. By itself, the non-bulletproof X Shirt costs $99 on Amendment II's website, and adding a front ballistic panel brings the price to between $349 to $649, depending upon size. For the shirt with both front and back panels, price ranges between $599 and $899.

Other bulletproof casual wear we've seen is equally, if not more, expensive, so if BulletSafe can indeed keep its price below $200, with the ballistic panel, it may have an attractive bullet-halting shirt.

Source: BulletSafe

8 comments
KarlMueller
Next they plan to offer a bulletproof bikini.
sugamari
the cap is bullet proof so when you stick it around corners to see if the shooter is looking you can reuse it later...
Joseph Mertens
In the USA from 1950 to present day only two mass shootings have happened where the public was legally and socially allowed to carry firearms All the rest have happened in places where it was frowned on to carry or legally restricted such as Gun Free Zones so in the interest of public safety why are you making safe havens for criminals and crazies to murder people? US homicide rate of NON CRIMINALS last year was 0.37/100,000, virtually the lowest in the developed world. You have to take into account well over 90% of US murder victims are criminals and gang members By the UN definition US mass murder fell over 50% the past 25 years as guns increased 33% and as assault rifles in the US went from 700,000 to 24,000,000 According to a crime report done by the parliament of the united kingdom, Great Britain and Wales's murder rate is to "exclude any cases which do not result in conviction or prosecuted on the grounds of self defense or otherwise".
SuperFool
I'd get one but it really needs a cool logo, & bullet proof dark glasses too
HensleyBeuronGarlington
100% agree with you, Mr. Mertens. Nation wide, Constitutional carry, lesson if not eliminate "gun free zones" which only law abiding citizens will follow. Advances in armor and education on firearms will certainly cut down if not entirely eliminate mass shootings. Making it harder for lawful citizens to carry firearms only helps those that wish to pray upon them.
Mark Robinson
While I would much rather have this on my head than not when being shot at, the first round of any of the calibers mentioned that strikes this cap will likely A) send the cap flying, and, B) deliver at the very least a severe concussion to the wearer. I think they should have made it with full, not just frontal, protection; if worn backwards it will only reduce splatter from a frontal hit and make clean up a little less messy. I've seen videos of people demonstrating the effectiveness of their vest by wearing one while being shot with a 357; I don't think we'll ever see such a demonstration with this cap.
f8lee
The thing about soft body armor is that the fabrics used have very hight tensile strength and so (hopefully) will not break when struck with a projectile at high velocity. However, the inertia of that projectile doesn't disappear - so if this cap does get hit (and what are the odds of that, given it must only cover a few square inches of the head?) and the fabric is not penetrated it would imply that the cap would just get sucked into the wearer's skull through the hole created by the round.
Douglas Bennett Rogers
I liked John Steed's bullet proof derby!