Clothing

The clothing you decide to wear on any given day may end up being your attire in a survival situation. Choose your clothing by selecting long-lasting materials which dry quickly and blend into the surrounding environment. Synthetic and synthetic/cotton blends are the best materials for comfortable, rugged and  fast-drying clothing, while leather tends to be the most durable material for gloves and boots. Avoid 100% cotton clothing such as jeans, cheap socks and many T-shirts because cotton wears out quickly and retains moisture long after becoming damp. It is wise to use solid colors for every-day wear in and around civilization. Camouflage patterns make a statement of "alert: militia member/survivalist" to the general public and should be reserved for TEOTWAWKI. At certain times it may be beneficial for you and your friends/family members to wear the same color scheme or camo pattern to easily recognize each other and to help identify intruders. The following clothing items are my top recommendations and I personally wear many of them on a regular basis.

 

Belts

Nylon belts are sturdy, durable and available in various colors and styles. The standard width for most tactical belts is 1.75". Avoid belts made of cotton webbing and leather; cotton belts are weak, fray easily and will soak up water; leather will also retain water and it tends to stretch and crack over time.



Propper Nylon Tactical Belts

Propper Nylon Tactical Belts



Blackhawk CQB Rigger's Belts (includes ring for climbing/rapelling)

Blackhawk CQB Riggers Belts



Boots

Always choose boots that are durable, lightweight and quiet. A height of 8" is ideal. 

For warm weather, select boots that are uninsulated and have vents for air circulation and water drainage. The Bates Durashocks boots are excellent for running, hiking and every-day wear. For cold weather, select boots that are insulated and water-resistant.


Note: Matt has worn Bates SEALs boots almost exclusively since 2001. These are issued in BUD/S and at the SEAL Teams. They are used for running, rucking and combat. These are the most comfortable boots on the market. Note: The last two pairs of these boots Matt has purchased have quickly developed cracks in the soles. If your boots develop cracks, notify Bates/Wolverines and request a replacement pair.


Men's Bates 8" Tropical SEALs Durashocks (black)

Women's Bates 8" Tropical SEALs Durashocks (black)

Bates Tropical SEALs Durashocks

 

 

Men's Bates USMC Lightweight Durashocks (coyote)

Women's Bates USMC Lightweight Durashocks (coyote)

Bates USMC Durashocks

 


 

Note about Danner boots: Matt recommends the following Danner boots only for limited cold weather use. They are very durable and water-resistant, and somewhat warm, but they present two oddities. One is that the laces extend too close to the toe of the boots, causing the boots to flex closer to the toes than most other boots, which Matt has found to rub his toes raw if used for much walking/hiking. The other is that the heel of these boots is deeper than normal, so Danner includes plastic inserts to accomodate for the extra depth. The inserts work well, but they shouldn't be necessary. These boots are SEAL Team issue and made in USA. 


Men's Danner 8" Acadia (black, GoreTex)

Women's Danner 8" Acadia (black, GoreTex)

Men's Danner 8" Acadia (black, 400g insulation)

Women's Danner 8" Acadia (black, 400g insulation)

Danner Acadia Black



Men's Danner 8" Marine GTX (coyote, GoreTex)

Women's Danner 8" Marine GTX (coyote, GoreTex)

Danner Acadia GTX Tan



Men's Danner 8" USAF GTX (sage green, 600g insulation, GoreTex)

Men's Danner 8" USAF GTX (sage green, GoreTex)

Women's Danner 8" USAF GTX (sage green, GoreTex)

Danner USAF GTX

 

 

Covers

Caps are well-suited for use around town (especially while driving) and for outdoor activities.


Vertx Kryptek Caps

Vertx Kryptek Ball Cap


Propper Poly/Cotton -or- Nylon/Cotton Ripstop 6-Panel Hat

These are excellent quality and very comfortable. Each color/camo pattern is available with or without velcro, and these are available in a wide variety of colors and camo patterns to match most of Propper's BDUs and ACUs.

Propper 6-Panel Hat

 

Hats with full brims are well-suited for outdoor activities requiring sun protection.


Propper Boonie Hats

Propper Boonie

 

Watch-caps are for cold-weather use and can be worn over a ball cap.


Carhartt Acrylic Watch Caps

The subdued colors in the top row of the picture below are good matches for most of Propper's solid color BDUs. Carhartt Brown is the equivalent of Coyote Brown (third from right). There may be more colors available than what is shown below.

Carhartt Acrylic Watch Caps


Microfleece Caps (oversized/deep)

Microfleece Caps

 

Foul Weather Gear

ECWCS (Extended Cold Weather Clothing System) suits consisting of pants and parka are windproof, waterproof, very durable and available in solid colors and camo patterns.


Tru-Spec ECWCS Pants

ECWCS Pants


Tru-Spec ECWCS Parkas

ECWCS Parka


Ponchos are useful both for wearing in the rain and for using as shelter tops.


Military Ponchos

Military Ponchos

 

Gloves

The best gloves for most outdoor purposes have leather palms for durability, to provide a secure grip and for heat resistance. Avoid knit and fleece gloves for regular use because they are slippery (aside from those with rubber on the palms), retain water, fray and wear out quickly. Nitrile-coated synthetic knit gloves, however, can be useful for keeping your hands clean while preparing food in the outdoors. Nomex flight gloves are a poor choice for outdoor use because the exposed stitching around the fingers wears out quickly from handling sticks and rocks, causing the leather palm to separate from the fabric backing. If you use Mechanix gloves made with synthetic suede, be careful not to handle burning sticks or hot cookware as both will melt the palm material.


Carhartt Men's Dozer Gloves (work gloves, insulated)

Carhartt Men's Dozer Glove


Carhartt Men's Leather Driver Gloves (everyday use)

Carhartt Men's Leather Driver Gloves


Carhartt Women's Driver Gloves (everyday use)

Carhartt Women's Driver Glove


Carhartt Men's Leather Driver Gloves (everyday use, insulated)

Carhartt Men's Leather Driver Gloves Insulated


Carhartt Men's Leather Fencer Gloves (work gloves)

Carhartt Men's Leather Fencer Gloves


Carhartt Men's System Gloves (snow gloves, insulated)

Carhartt System Gloves


Mechanix Tactical Gloves (shooting/operational gloves)

Mechanics Tactical Original

 

Jackets/Coats

Polar fleece jackets are well-suited for cool weather (32°-50°F) in civilization and in the outdoors.


Condor Micro Fleece Jackets

Condor Micro Fleece Jacket


Tru-Spec ECWCS Gen III Fleece Jackets

Tru-Spec ECWCS Gen III Fleece Jacket

 

Insulated M65 field jackets provide ample warmth in most sub-32° conditions.


Tru-Spec M65 Field Jackets with Liner

Tru-Spec M65 Field Jackets with Liner (Multicam)

Tru-Spec M-65 Field Jacket w/ Liner

 

Pants

BDU pants are military uniform pants which have six pockets and come in a variety of colors and camouflage patterns. The solid colored pants are all excellent for every-day wear.


Propper Poly/Cotton Ripstop BDU Pants

Propper Poly/Cotton Ripstop Pants


Propper Poly/Cotton Ripstop BDU Shorts

Propper Poly/Cotton BDU Short


Propper Poly/Cotton Twill BDU Pants

Propper Poly/Cotton Twill BDU Pants

 

ACU (Advanced Combat Uniform) pants are the "next generation BDU". They are available in several camouflage patterns and best for operational use during TEOTWAWKI.


Propper ACU Pants

Propper Poly/Cotton ACU Pants

 

Lightweight Tactical Pants are civilian pants designed to accomodate EDC gear items (BDU belt included).


Propper Lightweight Tactical Pants

Propper Lightweight Tactical Pants (Women's)

Propper Lightweight Tactical Pants

 

Shirts

BDU tops


Propper Poly/Cotton Ripstop BDU Coats

Propper Poly/Cotton Ripstop BDU Coat


Propper Poly/Cotton Ripstop BDU Shirts (2-pocket, tuckable)

Propper Poly/Cotton Ripstop BDU Shirt


Propper Poly/Cotton Twill BDU Coats

Propper Poly/Cotton Twill BDU Coat

 

ACU tops


Propper ACU Tops

Propper Poly/Cotton ACU Coat

 

Tactical shirts are high quality, acceptable for survival situations and appropriate for every-day wear.


Propper Long Sleeve Tactical Dress Shirts

Propper Short Sleeve Tactical Dress Shirts

Propper Poly/Cotton Tactical Dress Shirt


Women's Blackhawk Lightweight Long Sleeve Tactical Shirts

Women's Blackhawk Lightweight Short Sleeve Tactical Shirts

Blackhawk Women's Tactical Dress Shirt


Socks

Smart Wool and similar synthetic materials provide plenty of cushion and insulation for use in tactical and hiking boots in any situation.


Smartwool Hunting Light Midcalf Socks

Smartwool Hunting Light Midcalf Socks


Wigwam Hiking and Outdoor Socks

Wigwam hiking and Outdoor Socks

 

T-shirts

100% polyester T-shirts are very comfortable and fast-drying.


Coolmax Extreme Short Sleeve Shirts (tactical colors)

Coolmax Extreme Short Sleeve Shirts


Coolmax Extreme Long Sleeve Shirts (tactical colors)

Coolmax Extreme Long Sleeve Shirts


Thermals

Thermal underlayers provide extra insulation in cold weather.


Polarmax Thermals (Men's & Women's Tops & Bottoms)

Polarmax Thermals

 

Vests

Vests are useful for concealing your sidearm when your shirt is tucked-in and wearing a jacket would be inappropriate or too hot. Most vests provide multiple pockets for storing EDC items, and vests look great.


Carhartt Brookville Vests

Carhartt Brookville Vest


Carhartt Quick Duck Woodward Vests

Carhartt Quick Duck Woodward Vests


Carhartt Sandstone Mock Neck Vests

Carhartt Sandstone Mock Neck Vest


Carhartt Sandstone Hooded Multi-Pocket Vests

Carhartt Sandstone Hooded Multi-Pocket Vest


Propper Icon Softshell Vests

Propper Icon Soft Shell Vest