If you search for women and knives on the Internet, many of the results come up with lists of cooking knives.

How last century!

Unlike many Hollywood movies, women today don’t wait around for a man to provide them protection and get them out of a tough situation. Women can handle themselves, thank you very much.

Which brings us to knives purchased for self-defense. In a sometimes dangerous world, women often want more protection than pepper spray, but not all feel comfortable carrying a gun. That is why many find themselves shopping for knives.

Women have many choices in this area, and a variety of factors to consider. Here are a few to keep in mind (and remember you might want a practice knife to hone your skills before using the real thing).

Self Defense Knives for Women: Type of Knife

Here we are talking about the larger knife categories. You can choose from a folding knife or a fixed blade. Many choose a folding knife because of the ability to carry it concealed in purse or handbag. However, before deciding it’s important to actually hold a number of different knives and see what feels best for you.

Advantages of Folders

As noted above, folders typically are easier to conceal. They also come in a variety of sizes, but it’s wise to keep the blade length less than 4 inches, which will ensure you meet the regulations for knife length wherever you live. Folders also provide for quick deployment.

If you get one with a clip, you can also attach the knife to your belt and wear it like a pager. Folders come in many different varieties, and some have advanced designs such as the SNAG line of knives from KRUDO Knives.

Advantages of Fixed Blades

Fixed blades typically are seen as somewhat stronger than folding knives, although with the advances in folding knives, this is not always the case. Fixed blades come in a variety of lengths and styles.

Owners now can also get a fixed blade that is easy to conceal. For example, this Chevron blade, shaped as a triangle and double-bladed, is small enough to conceal in a bag or even wear on a keychain.

Other Options

After shopping for a knife, women may find that they didn’t want a knife after all once they have seen some of the other options. They include:

Compliance tools. These tools work like a knife, but without a blade. Instead, they are built to make an opponent feel enough pain to break off an attack. They come in a variety of styles and makes, including aluminum and polymer.

Tactical pens. These little tools offer incredible versatility. While it functions as a real pen, the other end is a glass breaker that can be used to get out of difficult situations. And with both ends capped, the pen functions as a titanium baton that women can use as a compliance tool to hammer parts of an opponent’s body. If not used to replace a knife, it can certainly prove a welcome addition to a self-defense arsenal.

No matter what type of blade or compliance tool a women chooses, they have a wealth of options to pick just the right self-defense tool they feel comfortable using. All of them allow a women to have the confidence of taking the business of their self-defense seriously and entirely in their own hands.

Just remember, no tool is useful without the proper training, so take learning how defend yourself seriously so that your knife of choice doesn’t get used against you.