Neck knives offer a variety of benefits that will aid you in times of need. These seemingly small tools can offer you a sense of security, confidence in your abilities, and the extra resource you need.

Given the critical nature of when you may find yourself needing a neck knife; whether that is in a utility, tactical, or survival situation. It's vital that you find just the right one tailored to you.

We have done the bulk of the research for you and have compiled a great list comparing the resources and products. Handle size, blade material, sheath, and overall capabilities of these knives are just some of the features we will discuss.

Certain features may suite you better than others. We have a great feeling that by the end of this list, you'll have a great idea of which is the best neck knives for your everyday scenarios.

Top Knife Necklaces For Self Defense in 2021

Product Name

Price

Rating


Smith & Wesson SW991

$

CRKT Minimalist Bowie Neck Knife

$$

CRKT Compact Fixed Blade Knife

$$

SOG Instinct Mini

$$

Gerber Gear GDC Money Clip

$

ESEE James Gibson Pinch Neck Knife

$$

Sheffield 12152 Bolo

$

MTech USA MT-20-30 Series Fixed Blade Neck Knife

$

MTech Fixed Blade Neck Knife

$

MASTER USA Mu-1123Sd Tactical Neck Knife

$

1. Smith & Wesson SW991


Overall Rating:

5 / 5

Let’s just identify on the record that Smith & Wesson has already proven their reliability as far as products go. Their well-known track record leaves no surprise that this knife would appear on our list.

The SW991 has an intriguing design that is lightweight and durable for heavy-duty usage. It has a sturdy structure that feels comfortable in your hand due to the slip-free grip and grooves built into the body. It's made of black oxide high carbon stainless steel as well as the stainless steel skeleton handle that's built to last.

The overall size of the knife is 5.5 inches with a blade of 2.5 inches and a weight of 1.5 ounces. It's compact and can be easily concealed under a shirt.

A neck knife that is both tactical and appealing. An important feature to notice is the nylon fiber neck sheath with a break-away chain. The chain allows for customization in size and quickdraws in times of use. The sheath has an impressive aspect; it creates the perfect snap when locking it perfectly into the sheath. This allows the blade to be snugged to prevent it from moving or slipping.

Overall the SW991 neck knife is comfortable to wear for everyday carry, looks tacti-cool, and multi-functional. The bottle opener is a neat feature to have during outdoor activities.

Pros

  • High carbon steel built
  • Compact for EDC
  • Minimalistic 

Cons

  • Specialized aesthetic
  • Handle could be shorter

2. CRKT Minimalist Bowie


Overall Rating:

5 / 5

This CRKT minimalist bowie neck knife is ideal for self-defensive and survival. It allows you the option of wearing this tool as an adjustable necklace or rig attachment with the provided belt clip; super easy to use and versatile.

The bowie blade style is 2.16 inches long high-carbon steel with lightweight portability of 1.6 ounces and a resin-infused handle that can fit comfortably in your hand. This knife may be small, but the size, portability, and power make up for the size.

The neck lanyard with safety breakaways as well as on the knife itself is comfortable to wear and easy to access. The sheath fits this blade perfectly with a single satisfying click sound. One of the best feelings known among knives.

The bead blast blade is incredibly smooth; it comes with a glass-reinforced nylon sheath, equating to a truly stylish, high-quality knife made from top-quality materials.

Pros

  • Stylish and versatile
  • Minimum sharpening
  • High quality material

Cons

  • Limited Warranty
  • Not ideal for large projects

3. CRKT Compact Fixed Blade 2384KC


Overall Rating:

5 / 5

The CRKT compact fixed blade is a no-nonsense, get the job done quickly type of knife. It's built with a sleek design that's made for tactical use.

This knife necklace weighs in at 1.7 ounces with a 2.16 inch steel blade in stonewash finish, and a G10 handle, it gives no hints of inadequacy. You’ll also receive a nylon fob to extend the grip so that it never slips out of your hand. The grooves on the handle fit comfortably without having to adjust your hand, allowing you to use it to your max potential.

The sheath's polypropylene, which adds 0.6 ounces. You won’t forget that you’re wearing this little beast of a knife. While it does weigh in a bit more than some of these, it is truly made for utility and even includes a nylon lanyard.

Overall the appearance of this knife just shows that you're not here to play. It's tactical in an all-black finish with a durable build that can take a beating. It's the ideal defensive tool for everyday carry and concealment, as long as you're wearing black of course.

Pros

  • Durable 
  • Sleek and tactical
  • High quality build

Cons

  • No belt clip
  • Not ideal for large projects

4. SOG Instinct Mini


Overall Rating:

5 / 5

The SOG instinct mini is a compact knife with a blade length of 1.9 inch in stainless steel. It delivers a sleek aesthetic with its satin polish finish. It is has a full tang knife, which is impressive considering its size and the fact that it only weighs in at 1.4 ounces.

This necklace knife is extremely comfortable in one's hand, regardless of its size. It may not weigh as much as the other knives, but the compact build feels balanced. It's difficult to notice this blade when it's attached to your waistline, the belt clip on the sheath is simple, yet durable.

The sheath comes with a black steel neck chain included. Marketed as a utility and all-around preparedness tool, the grip is designed to be ergonomically beneficial, and comfort hasn't been overlooked here. Again, style and functionality considered, this is a pretty impressive knife.

Another point worth mentioning is that SOG is an American-made company and promises to assist customers when needed; great customer service experience if you are having issues.

Pros

  • Ergonomic design
  • Comfortable belt clip
  • Full tang blade

Cons

  • Small blade
  • Lack of versatility

5. Gerber Gear 31-002521N GDC Money Clip


Overall Rating:

4.5 / 5

The Gerber GDC money clip fixed blade is not exactly a neck knife unless you add a chain or lanyard yourself. However, Gerber is a well-known brand for self-defense and survival tools.

This tool stands at 1.5 inches by 3.7 inches with the sheath. It's flat and compact enough to hide almost anywhere along your waistline without being noticed, even when seen. It's simple to deploy and deadly when used for self-defense.

The blade includes a perfect finger slot with serrated thumb and index finger rest to assure you a tight grip. It also has bonus features that allow you to store up to 5 credit cards

Do not let the size deter you from trying it out. It's discreet and great for urban usage; typically not ideal for the wilderness due to the overall size.

Pros

  • Very light
  • Inconspicuous and discreet
  • Specifically designed for tactical use

Cons

  • Not designed for utility/survival
  • May not work for variety of sizes of hands

6. ESEE James Gibson Pinch


Overall Rating:

4.5 / 5

Where do we start with this ESSE James Gibson Pinch? How about the 1.3 inch carbon steel blade? Carbon steel's incredibly durable provided that it's care for and well maintained. That wouldn’t be difficult with this knife design.

Taking a look at the style of this knife, there’s no denying that the stone-washed black oxide is a fantastic choice for the chic design. It's simple and tactical, great pinch grip and the cold steel just feels amazing.

Even the sheath is chic; it's a molded sheath with magnetic retention. Weighing in at just 1 ounce, it is the lightest neck knife on our list. It's not your typical sheath, the blade is held safely in place but also allows for easy deployment.

Again, a huge plus is that this knife is made in the USA and offers a lifetime warranty.

Pros

  • Durability
  • USA made
  • Easily deployed

Cons

  • Magnetic sheath
  • Requires maintenance
  • Pinch grip

7. Sheffield 12152 Bolo


Overall Rating:

4.5 / 5

The Sheffield 12152 Bolo’s is one of the larger knife necklaces on our list. It features a 2.15 inch stainless steel blade with a lanyard opening at the back. It's one of the more aggressive options for self-defense.

This knife is a little different than what we have featured so far, in that the handle is an additional 3.25 inch black nylon/fiberglass handle. The handle can comfortably fit in your hand with a weight of 4 ounces balanced nicely.

These types of knives are made to accommodate men or women and can be used for tactical scenarios as well as hunting or survival tools. Its sheath is a plastic injection mold with a ball chain necklace. It does not get any more simple than this.

It's ideally for a wilderness environment rather than an urban setting since it's too bulky for concealment.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Tacti-cool
  • High quality materials

Cons

  • Quite large
  • Bulky for concealment

8. MTech USA MT-20-30 Series


Overall Rating:

4 / 5

This MTech MT-20-30 series rugged-looking knife features a 2 inch, full tang, stainless steel blade with a 2.75 inch G10, fiberglass handle.

The blade itself has a stonewash finish, giving it its tactical appearance. The blade and handle are nearly the same lengths which make this knife well balanced and functional.

It is designed for tactical use but could easily be used for self-defense. Between the full tang and G10 handle, you will not be lacking any strength here. This knife does include a Kydex sheath with a ball chain for easy wearing.

This is the type of knife you can deploy and depend on when needed. It's not as comfortable to wear because of the handle size, but concealment is a breeze.

Pros

  • Strength of knife
  • Tactical functions
  • High quality sheath

Cons

  • Uncomfortable
  • Lack of versatility

9. MTECH Fixed Blade MT-588F


Overall Rating:

4 / 5

The MT-588F is simply about purpose and is for the true minimalist. What makes this unique is the black grenade-style handle as well as the shape and finger/thumbhole at the base of the blade.

From tip to end, the knife is 4.25 inches long and comes with a sturdy sheath and metal ball chain; that lets you adjust the perfect length for the deployment of the blade.

This knife is specific to smaller hands and is designed for tactical use. As a basic neck knife, this is a daily driver.

Its deadly design works as an advantage to deter the threat away since it's a double-edged blade. It also works when making a fist, similar to a brass knuckle, but more effective for self-defense.

Pros

  • Simple design
  • Reliable brand
  • Great for tactical use

Cons

  • Lack of versatility
  • Not ideal for large hands

10. MASTER USA Mu-1123Sd Tactical


Overall Rating:

4 / 5

While it looks similar to the Smith & Wesson we discussed earlier, this tactical knife features a 3 inch stainless steel blade with a drop point shape. It is 6.75 inches long overall and comes with a black lanyard and plastic sheath with a whistleblower.

It's versatile and can be deployed in an instant. The handles feel great but the blade needs regular maintenance. The blade needs to be sharpened on arrival and does not click smoothly into the sheath.

However, it's affordable and get's the job done. It may be longer than other options on this list, but it's sleek and easy to conceal for quick deployment.

This illustrates the true purpose of this knife, which is tactical/self-defense use. It weighs 3.2 ounces, which is heavier than some knives we've listed. This is a great knife for men or women and could double as a survival or utility knife.

Pros

  • Versatility
  • Affordability
  • Ease of use by various individuals

Cons

  • Long and thin frame
  • Loose sheath

Buying Guide For Neck Knives

There are various brands and various styles to consider, from Smith & Wesson to MTech and Sheffield to SOG. At the top of the list were Smith & Wesson’s SW991 and Columbia River Knife and Tool’s Minimalist Bowie knife. Because these are reputable brands, functional and well designed knives, and reasonably priced, they are our recommended neck knives. Check them out for yourselves!

Length of Knife

The length of the knife you'll be looking for will matter for several reasons. Obviously, you'll be considering what you'll be using the knife for. The larger the cut you intend to make, the larger the knife you'll need.

Also keep in mind that the knife will be around your neck, so consider your own body as a scale to to keep that knife comfortable for yourself.

Material

This may seem like a no-brainer, but consider this from multiple standpoints. What your knife is made of is important because different metals or materials weather differently from one another.

Stainless steel, carbon steel, ceramic, and sterling silver all behave differently from one another in different environments. This is also important when considering our next feature.

Price

Obviously, pricing matters. You want the most for your money and it is important to identify quality that is worth your investment.

If you're going to increase your budget, be sure that the quality of the materials or other marks of reliability are high enough to justify the pricing.

Warranty

This links to all of the previous features discussed. Make sure you have a warranty on your knife. When you're looking in such depth for something like a neck knife, be sure the company you purchase from backs its own product.

You're looking to use the item purchased in what is assumed to be a decently critical situation, and you deserve to have a product that comes with back-up. A good warranty covers the materials of the product, the assembly of the product, and should show the manufacturer's good faith in the product. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Neck Knives

What is a neck knife? 

A knife that is small enough to be worn as a necklace, and easy to conceal/deploy.

What are neck knives used for? 

Neck knives are used for self-defense, tactical purposes, utility, survival, and anything along the lines of quick deployment.

Why do people have neck knives?

Neck knives are mainly for concealment. It is easy to hide and deploy in an instant for self defense.

Bottom Line

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