Are you planning some quality time in the great outdoors? A high-quality flashlight is an essential survival item. Like all the other supplies you bring, the ideal flashlight will be lightweight and take up as little space as possible.
There are many scenarios in which you need a pocket flashlight. Examples include if you find yourself walking around in the dark or get lost. Keep yourself safe by having the best pocket flashlight. It’s important. I speak from experience.
Best pocket flashlights
- 5 settings, including strobe and SOS emergency mode.
- Adjustable focus, from wide to narrow.
- Ergonomic and anti-fall design.
Best Tactical Use
- 3 settings: High, Low, and Strobe.
- Wide to narrow beam zoom.
- Tactical design, including attack head used for self-defens.
- Attached belt clip
Best For Portability
- 3 selectable programs, including high/strobe, high only, and low/high.
- Waterproof (up to 30 minutes in one meter of water).
- Removable pocket clip.
- Anti-roll design flashlight head.
Best For Durability
- Shock-absorbing design for greater durability.
Best For Personal Use
- Attachable with key ring or pocket clip.
What are the Benefits of Pocket Flashlights?
A pocket flashlight is an essential part of any outdoor survival toolkit. Consider getting more than one, so you have backups. Are you going camping or doing other activities outdoors as a group, with family or friends? It’s a good idea for each person to have a personal pocket flashlight.
You need a pocket flashlight when you have to see in dark areas outdoors. Remember that there are no street lights in the wilderness. With all the shade from trees, it can be especially dark. If you have to walk around in the dark, a flashlight is the difference between getting back to your campsite safely or ending up with an unpredictable injury.
When wandering around in the dark without a proper source of light, it doesn’t matter how far you’re going. There is always the risk of injury. A rock, protruding tree roots, uneven ground, or unexpected holes can result in severe injuries. Even things such as small branches at eye level can cause an injury that will ruin the rest of your outdoor adventure.
Any emergency preparedness authority will tell you to have a flashlight to hand. Of course, when you go for outdoor adventures, you’re at higher risk of ending up in an emergency. When you are camping or exploring the wilderness, you will need a flashlight for a variety of tasks, including:
- Finding your way in the dark or heavily shaded areas
- Leaving your campsite at night to get a drink or use the restroom
- Being aware of surrounding objects such as rocks, holes, tree roots, or uneven ground
- Protecting yourself from tree branches or twigs at eye level
Some pocket flashlights have tactical design features, too. For example, some have edged tips that you can use for emergency tasks, such as breaking glass or self-defense.
How to Choose the Best Pocket Flashlight
Consider what outdoor activities you’ll be doing and your specific needs when choosing the best pocket flashlight EDC. Different pocket spotlights have various features and light capabilities. Make a list of priorities for your flashlight and look for pocket flashlights that best fit your needs.
Know the Brightness
While knowing a flashlight’s lumen count is important, be aware that other factors come into brightness, too. A lumen tells you the total amount of light. You should also consider how much other elements of the flashlight impact brightness.
For example, it’s possible to have a flashlight that advertises a high lumen number but doesn’t perform well. An example would be if it doesn’t have the right kind of lens and reflector shape. These are instrumental in the width of the beam and how far it travels. Take time to test a new LED flashlight. It is usually the brightest when you initially turn it on.
Check Out the IP Rating
Also, look for the flashlight’s IP (ingress protection) rating. Ingress protection is the protection that stops outside debris or objects from ending up inside your flashlight. After the letters IP, you should see two digits. The first digit indicates protection from solid debris (examples include grit and dust). The second number means how well the flashlight is protected from moisture getting inside it.
If you find an “X” instead of either of these numbers, the flashlight is not tested in that area. For example, if you see an “X” where the first number should be, the flashlight hasn’t been tested to see how well it’s protected from solids getting inside.
The numbers range from 1 to 6 for protection from solids, with the highest number meaning the best protection. When it comes to water, the highest number (and best rating) is eight. If you find a flashlight with 8 in the second position, it means the flashlight is waterproof. In other words, the flashlight can survive more than 30 minutes in water at a depth of more than a meter.
Consider the Design and Construction
When you check a flashlight’s IP rating, you can get a sense of how durable it is. Of course, this isn’t the only factor. You should also look at what kinds of design and construction the flashlight has. You should look for a flashlight that has sturdy materials. If you are worried that you might drop your flashlight, a flashlight that is impact resistant would be a good choice.
The Best Pocket Flashlights Reviewed
Below I will review five of me top choices for the best pocket flashlights of 2021.
If you’d prefer a pocket flashlight with an ergonomic design, I would recommend the Outlite A100 Portable 2000 Lumens Handheld LED Flashlight. This is a compact flashlight, 5.35 inches in length. Its design means you are less likely to drop it, so it’s convenient for all kinds of situations. This flashlight is water-resistant, and it can survive splashing.
This Outlite flashlight has a surprisingly powerful LED light, with 2000 Lumens. If you want to focus on something far away, you can do it with this flashlight. Even if something is as far as 1,000 feet away, there’s a way to see it with the Outlite flashlight. You can adjust the focus, moving between wide and narrow beam zoom.
The flashlight has five modes: High, Medium, Low, Strobe, and SOS Emergency mode. For obvious reasons, the SOS Emergency mode is an outstanding feature to have at hand when you are outdoors. You can expect a five-hour battery life.
The Outlite A100 Portable 2000 Lumens flashlight boasts advanced features that most other options don’t. These include an upgraded LED chip and a special integrated circuit. This is why this pocket flashlight creates such bright light.
- Portable and convenient
- Five settings, including strobe and SOS Emergency modes
- Ergonomic and anti-fall design
- Adjustable focus
- Powerful 2000 lumen LED light
- Uses either three regular AAA batteries or one rechargeable 18650 battery
- Comes with three AAA batteries
- 18650 battery isn’t included
If you want a pocket flashlight famous for being virtually indestructible, you might like the J5 Tactical V1-PRO. J5 Tactical claims this flashlight will stay intact and functional after a 9-foot drop. If you accidentally drop it in water and take it out right away, there shouldn’t be a problem. It’s not waterproof, but it is water-resistant.
This compact tactical flashlight fits in your pocket and the light is impressively bright. It will help you see objects as far as 600 feet away. There are three settings: High, Low, and Strobe. You can also adjust from wide to narrow beam zoom. J5 Tactical provides a Satisfaction 100% Guarantee. The replacement warranty is no questions asked and lasts one year. J5 Tactical is a U.S.-based company, and it provides attentive customer service when you need it.
With this flashlight’s affordable cost, it’s easy to buy more than one so you can keep them in different places.
- Durable tactical design
- Three settings: high, low, and strobe
- Ultra-bright light
- 100% satisfaction guarantee
- Excellent customer service
- Includes an attached belt clip
- Attack head for self-defense
- Features convex lens
- 300-lumen brightness
- Batteries not included
- Switching modes can be tricky
- Beam changes shape with zooming
If you’re looking for an extraordinarily compact pocket flashlight, Streamlight 88033 ProTac 2AA is certainly worth considering. This surprisingly powerful flashlight is the size of a marker. It includes a removable pocket clip, and you can use this when you want to carry the flashlight around. There is also a holster. After all, you don’t want to lose your flashlight when on your adventures.
This pocket flashlight is versatile, with High, Low, and Strobe settings. The push-button tail switch means you can change the setting with one hand.
- 250-lumen brightness
- Compact design the size of a marker
- Uses two AA alkaline batteries (included)
- Comes with a nylon holster
- 50,000 hour lifetime
- Tail switch with push button functionality
- Durable tactical design
- Three selectable programs: high/strobe/low, high only, and low/high
- 130-meter beam distance
- C4 LED technology creates intense brightness
- Tempered glass lens to resist impact
- Aircraft aluminum construction
- Removable pocket clip
- Waterproof (up to 30 minutes in one meter of water)
- Flashlight head has an anti-roll design
- Changing the setting may be tricky
- Limited battery life
- More expensive than other options
If you’d like a pocket flashlight that’s enough for more basic use, this might be for you. It doesn’t have the same brightness as some other flashlights, so you probably shouldn’t venture too far in the dark with this. As long as you know its limitations, though, it has plenty of light for many tasks.
Dorcy 55 Lumen Floating Waterproof LED Flashlight is waterproof. If you drop it in water, it will float, which means it is easy to retrieve. You won’t have to worry about it sinking to the bottom of a lake. The rubber on this flashlight’s casing makes it impact-resistant. It also creates a superior grip, so you’re less likely to drop it in the first place. If you’re a little clumsy sometimes, this is an advantage.
- Floats if you drop it in water
- Durable and shock-absorbing design
- Can attach to your backpack or belt
- Rubber is easy to grip
- Uses 3 AA batteries (included)
- 31-meter beam distance
- Extended run time (8 hours and 45 minutes)
- Very affordable
- Lightweight and easy to carry
- 55 lumens might not be bright enough
This miniature flashlight is a popular personal flashlight. It’s extremely small (1.47 inches long) and portable. This Streamlight flashlight’s LED area has a parabolic shape, which is key to its beam strength. If you want a flashlight that you can attach to pretty much anything, this may be the one for you. Attach it with the keyring or pocket clip. This product uses batteries (four IEC LR41 coin cells) that are included.
Streamlight 7301 Nano Light Miniature Keychain LED Flashlight is much more durable than you probably think. It has machined aircraft-grade aluminum construction with an anodized finish. It has a waterproof case. This is an advantage if you think there’s any danger you could drop it in the water while in the outdoors. This flashlight is easy to turn on and off with its rotating head switch.
- Tiny and portable
- Easily attached and detached with key ring or pocket clip
- Operate with one hand using non-rotating snap hook
- Weatherproof and durable
- Sturdy aluminum construction and casing
- Choose one of four colors
- Batteries included
- LED light has 100,000-hour life
- Very affordable
- Can run for 8 hours, but output quality decreases
- Only 10-lumen brightness
Best Pocket Flashlight: Final Verdict
Outlite A100 Portable 2000 Lumens Handheld LED Flashlight is my clear choice for the best pocket flashlight. It combines bright and powerful LED light with convenient adjustability. It has five modes and adjustable focus, so I can use this flashlight any way I need to. The SOS Emergency Mode gives me extra peace of mind.
If you’re looking for a great outdoor pocket flashlight, any of the above options will do the job well, however, I don’t believe that any will do the job better than the Outlite A100. Give it a try, and let me know what you think!