How to Choose a Life Jacket – The Ultimate Guide

Never should safety be compromised for fun and excitement in whatever you get involved with that requires the use of a life jacket. This post will cover all that you need to know on how to choose a life jacket. So, you do not have to fret or wear yourself out of worry of not making the wrong call when buying one for yourself.

What is the life jacket?

This is a personal floatation device that is being used to save a life. It is also called several names such as life vest, life preserver, life belt, life vest and lifesaver. Indeed, there are different kind of jackets you will find in the market, store, as personal protective equipment, but the act of keeping you safe depicts the function of a life jacket.

It is different from every other jacket. They are designed in such a way to keep one safe, thereby reduce one’s chances of losing their life in any situation.

How to Choose a Life Jacket

Who are those that should use life jacket?

There are some specific sets of people that should use a life jacket, such as:

Marine workers

You might ask why should a naval officer use a life jacket since they have been trained on how to swim. The truth is that there is a level you can get through when swimming. There are cases where one will have to jump into the sea for safety measure or to save others, and in such a situation, a life jacket is essential.


I never used one while learning how to swim. I would never suggest you try that if you do not know how to swim. Swimming trainers have the right to allow their trainee to wear a life jacket while learning how to swim. As they move around in the pool to the shallow part, the coat will suspend them in the water, and they wouldn’t be able to drown.

Travellers on the sea

If you will be travelling through the sea, one of the protective gears you should request is your life jacket. The ship operatives should be responsible for the provision of a life jacket to every passenger on the boat. Each person must have a life jacket to his/herself. I will discuss the danger of not having a life jacket when travelling on a sea in the latter part of this article.

Why is life jacket so important?

A life jacket is essential in saving a life. It has no other purpose than that. In the United States and some other parts of the world where people sojourn through the sea, the rate at which people die as a result of drowning increases yearly.

Such casualty can only be reduced through the use of a life jacket. Let me share some life experiences. I saw a video showing how a boat capsized on the sea. More than twenty people were on board. Due to the tide of another ship, the boat controller lost the control, and everyone was thrown into the sea.

Those who were not with life jacket drown immediately and those who know how to swim, tried all they could to beat the pressure and time till the rescue team were available. It is not to our surprise when we see some set of people less worried.

These sets of people were on with a life jacket, and they were able to remain on the surface of the water floating. That alone shows as small the jacket might be, it has the propensity to save lives as that is what it is designed to do.

That reminds me on the day I want to a beach with friends, and the sea was uncontrollably unstable. We all had our life jacket on, and that was quite a reason for us all to be calm, but the fear of even getting into the sea is enough to render me lifeless. That on a light mood.

My point on the little story I’ve shared is that you should never underestimate the importance of a life jacket when you are dealing with water. I have heard of people losing their lives in the pool as a result of not being able to swim.

Such kind of people should never do without a life jacket. It is why everyone who has an interest in learning how to swim should have a personal life jacket and continually use until they become sound to swim easily and become mastery of how to float in the pool.

Consequences of not using a life jacket


The rate at which people lose their lives as a result of drowning in the sea or pool is so high. The use of a life jacket could have prevented such occurrences. The reason for death is that once the lungs get filled with water, it becomes so difficult to breath and that will lead to the shutdown of some important organs in the body which will then lead to death.


One might be so lucky to find someone to rescue or perhaps the rescue team gets to the scene on time. Such a person will be in a state of trauma, even after he/she had been rescued. This has become one of the major reasons some people never want to go near seas. You should never be afraid of the sea whenever you have your companion with you. I Your companion is your life jacket. 

How can you choose a perfect jacket for you?

This is an important part of this article. Once you miss it here, you might end up losing it in the pool or sea even if you have your life jacket with you. So, let’s consider things that you need to look out for to make the right call.

Pick the right size

Many people make the mistake of choosing a life jacket outside of the pool. The best place to know if a life jacket is a right size is when you are in the pool. The reason is that once you get into the pool while you have your jacket on before you get into the pool, the water might push the jacket and that will leave some spaces, and you will end up battling with it for a snug fit.

Get into the pool. Find your way to the part that is not too deep. Make sure the water is within your chest region. Pick the life jacket and put it on you. Then you try to sit in the water by folding your leg. Push yourself up while in the bending position.

If you float with the jacket on your back without hassles and any need to make an adjustment, then you have found a perfect fit. If not, you will have to try some other life jacket until you get your perfect fit.

Snap all the buckles

Most life jackets do come with quality snap buckle to keep it around the body. Ensure it gives you a perfect fit, and then you are good to go. If you notice too much space, it is a sign to tell you it is not the right choice for you. Ensure all the snap buckles are good.

Check through and ensure none is broken. You need all to be intact, so you do not have to battle out with the water while trying to keep the life jacket around you. You can save yourself from an unnecessary drama by checking through to ensure all is in good condition.

Is it certified?

You might think you should not be concerned with this aspect. But you really have to care about it. If you are buying a life jacket, it is one of the very integral factors you should consider. Check to know if the life jacket is certified and good for use. If not, you have every right to ask for a replacement.

There are many life jackets in the market. One can simply get into the market and get anyone. Prices vary and quality too. You just have to look out for the best that suits you and never overlook the part of certification for your safety sake.


We really hope this article on how to choose a life jacket will help you in making the right call. We do hope we have been able to offer you the best information you need to know about life jacket, the peril of not using it, the importance of using it and guide on how to make the right choice.

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