Personal protection is something every woman has to consider, and how she chooses to do that depends on the individual.

It’s becoming more and more common for women to carry a firearm as a way to protect themselves and their family, so it’s not surprising that the number of permits to carry a concealed weapon is on the rise. For women, the purse offers a convenient place to store her choice of protection, and the firearms industry has developed a variety of options from which to choose.

Unfortunately, there are many places around the country where almost any “official” weapon is banned. This is a dangerous trend but there is an alternative. When you are not permitted to carry or cannot effectively carry concealed, being armed and able to defend yourself may have to take on a different meaning. Don’t be fooled, however, into thinking you’re unprotected just because you aren’t able to carry your weapon of choice. Being armed just looks differently than you might expect.

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You may not expect your purse to be a source of protection, but it offers a plethora of self defense weapons. It’s your own personal toolbox that just happens to accentuate your outfit and conveniently hold all your belongings. Purses are as varied as the women who carry them, and there’s a purse for every occasion. Although the purse and its contents may change according to the event or whatever phase of life you’re currently in, there are a few items that are common in almost every purse. It is these common items found in your purse that we will look at as self-defense tools.

The purse holds multiple options for self defense weapons if you realize their potential and know how to use them. You’ll even be able to improvise your own weapons once you learn what makes a common object an effective self-defense tool. When you can’t be armed, then you’ll need to be able to grab whatever’s handy and use it to protect yourself. So let’s look at what’s inside your purse and see what can double as a tool for self-defense.

Striking Back

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You can use the corner of your cell phone as a sharp weapon against the soft areas of an attacker’s face.

A constant in any purse or hand is a cell phone. It is a hard-edged item that makes a great weapon when used on soft targets like an attacker’s face. To most effectively use this tool, thrust the corner of the phone into the soft area at the bottom of the cheekbone, and drive the phone as hard as you can into the soft tissue. When you do this, strive to push the phone through to the back of the head.

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This technique is extremely painful due to the sensitive nature of the area. One of the factors that makes this technique so effective is the energy behind the strike. When you strike in self-defense, you focus on going through your target with your entire body. This method of striking allows for a powerful transfer of energy, making it extremely effective. Even if it’s not painful or the individual doesn’t react to the pain, the force with which you strike will drive their head back, giving you an opportunity to escape.

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A pen allows you to apply sharp pressure to sensitive areas.

When you are striking for self-defense purposes, it is important to remember to use soft items on hard targets and hard items on soft targets. This concept allows you to get the most out of your strike with the least amount of damage to yourself or the weapon you are using. If you strike a hard target with something hard like your fist or cell phone, you run the risk of damaging yourself or the phone as much as you damage your target. Considering you may need to continue to defend yourself, you will need to protect your assets to the best of your ability.

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A metal pen is a great multitasker. It’s a fashionable and useful writing utensil and can also serve as a great self-defense tool. Pens that are metal make far superior weapons due to their rigid design. They don’t bend, flex or break easily, giving you a weapon that is more reliable and effective. If you need to use a pen for self-defense, then target soft areas like the face and neck, as they are more painful. Grip the pen like you would a knife and thrust it into the target. One target that is especially reactive is the neck, just below the jawline. It is nerve-rich and full of blood vessels and veins. Even if the pen doesn’t puncture the skin, the pain involved will be a distraction and the force of the attack will push the attacker back, creating an opportunity to escape.

Fight Stoppers

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Using a water bottle to strike is more effective than it may seem. The water acts as a channel and will transfer all of the energy into the target.

Another tool of self-defense that is commonly found in a purse or on a keychain is actually classified as a weapon despite its benign appearance: the kubaton. The kubaton is a straight piece of metal, plastic or wood about 6 inches in length, and it is highly recommended for all purses and/or keychains. It is extremely useful when you need to strike, poke, scrape or compress sensitive areas of the body. Its rigidity makes it extremely effective in applying the needed pressure to encourage someone to leave you alone. Without any training, the kubaton can be used in the same manner as the pen.

Remembering the advice about using hard objects on soft targets, drive the kubaton into a soft target with all your energy. With minimal training, the kubaton can be one of the most effective self-defense tools you can carry. Something to keep in mind, however, is that since it is legally classified as a weapon, it cannot be taken onto a plane. So remember to check your carry-ons before boarding and put the kubaton in your checked baggage. It is also a good idea to check the local laws in your area in regards to kubatons to avoid any problems as you go about your day-to-day business.

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Another item that is totally unsuspecting as a tool of self-defense is a water bottle. Any kind of water bottle provides a very effective impact weapon, and the water itself is a great conduit for transferring energy into the target. The most effective way to use the water bottle is to hold it upside down so that the bottom of the water bottle is exposed. One target that is very receptive to this type of weapon is the bridge of the nose.

With a continuous motion, strike down onto the bridge and follow the length of the nose, maintaining force and pressure. You are striking to defend yourself, so be sure to strike like you mean it. You want to smash the nose and drag it down. This type of strike makes several things happen. First, people have a natural tendency to flinch anytime something comes close to their face; and second, the pain and eye watering that accompanies a strike to the nose provides a good opportunity for an escape. Keep in mind that this technique of striking the nose works with any type of water bottle, but obviously the type of material it is made of will affect the results.

The ideas behind these “weapons” can be applied to just about anything you find in a purse, backpack, shoulder bag, glove compartment or something you find on the ground. Use the concepts mentioned above and you can turn anything into a weapon of self-defense. Carry when you can, but if the need for protection arises and you don’t have your firearm, reach into your bag of tricks and be ready to give them a fight they won’t forget. Learn how to use everyday items to increase your chances of successfully defending yourself against an assailant.

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