Best Life Jacket For Kayaking 2020 – Review & Buying Guide

Our Top 3 Pick

#1 Astral #2 SALVS #3 Stohlquist 
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Kayaking tours and solo Kayaking is fun. You can explore the white waters or you can kayak around a beach. It is not just a fun activity but it is also a good workout. One thing that is absolutely important for Kayaking or any such water sport is a good and reliable life jacket. Now, you might think what is the big deal about picking up a life jacket but it is one of the most essential parts of any water sport. In case of any mishappening, the quality of the life jacket will determine a lot of things for you.

It is always better to invest in a good quality Life Jacket and it is best to check that the life jacket that you are choosing is perfect for Kayaking. With so many options available in the market, they may seem to be a difficult task but we are here to rescue you from this. We have listed some of the best Life Jackets for Kayaking available in the market and while compiling this list, we considered all the factors important for the Life Jacket. So, let us move ahead and check out these details.

Top 5 Best Life Jacket For Kayaking

Below are the top 5 Life Jackets available for Kayaking that you will find in the market. Most of them are lightweight and they are also available in different sizes. You can go ahead and check them out in order to find the best fit for yourself. You can also visit the product page if you are looking for more information about these jackets.

#1. Stohlquist Rocker Personal Floatation Device

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The first one on our list is from Stohlquist Waterway and this jacket is certainly one of the best available in the market. The jacket is 7 inches high and it is 16 inches wide. In addition to this, the jacket is made of nylon which also integrates a ventilated lumbar pad in the jacket. You can easily wash this life jacket with hand without any trouble. This is the best life jacket for women as it has inner cups for the women and it also has several pockets which can help you in storing some of the important things while kayaking. There are a total of 6 adjustable areas in this life jacket which helps you in getting a perfect fit while you are wearing the jacket. Moreover, you can choose from the two sizes available here. 


  • Available in 2 sizes and 3 colours
  • Comes with reflectors and has a high visibility
  • Comes with storage pockets


  • Slightly expensive

#2. Onyx Curve MOVEMENT Paddle Sports PFD

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Onyx is one of the most reliable brands when it comes to life jackets and this is the reason why we have a jacket from Onyx in our list. The jacket comes in 3 colours and it is available in 3 different sizes as well. The lower back of the jacket comes with mesh so that you do not feel discomfort while sitting in a high back seat. In addition to this, the side belts are adjustable which helps you in fitting the life jacket properly. Overall, the jacket is soft and it is made of lightweight floating foam. The colours available in this jacket are Yellow, Blue and Red. All of them are bright and easy to spot from a distance. It is certainly one of the best available in the market.


  • Priced in Mid-Range
  • Made of heavy-duty nylon fabric
  • Integrates neoprene comfort pads


  • No pockets available in the jacket

#3. Onyx General Purpose Boating Vest

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If you are not really into Kayaking and if you just wish to try it once then it doesn’t really make sense to purchase a jacket that is dedicatedly made for Kayaking trips. In such a case, you can purchase general-purpose life jackets for boating which can be used for boating trips as well. This jacket from Onyx would serve the purpose. It is available in 4 colours and 7 different sizes. The jacket has adjustable belts and straps to ensure a good fit. Apart from this, the foam used is very durable and the armholes are also quite large to comfort you easily. The bright colours improve visibility and coupled with the right price, this makes a perfect choice for you.


  • Can be used for general-purpose boating trips
  • One of the most affordable life jacket
  • Available in bright colours


  • Slightly bulky

#4. Astral Ronny Life Jacket PFD For Kayaking

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On number 4, we have a jacket from Astral and this one is made specifically for fishing tours and kayaking. You can easily go ahead and choose this jacket as it is one of the safest life jacket available in the market. The material used here is of very good quality and it is also toxic-free. The brand tries to recycle as much as possible thus reducing the impact on nature as well. The inner liner is made of breathable mesh and it also has several pockets to store important things. The zipper of this jacket is also equipped with the self-locking vision teeth to enhance the safety of the person using the jacket. The jacket is available in 4 sizes and 7 colours.


  • Has a good buoyancy rating and it is UGCS Type III Approved
  • Comes with breathable liner and is made of durable fabric
  • The material used is toxic free


  • Nothing as such

#5. SALVS Automatic/Manual Inflatable Life Jacket for Adults

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This is an automatic inflatable jacket available on our list. The jacket can be inflated manually as well but as soon as it is immersed in the water, the jacket would inflate because of the co2 cylinder in the life jacket. Since you do not have to inflate it while kayaking, it feels lightweight and much more comfortable to wear. After the inflation, you can reuse it by simply replacing the new arming kit for the jacket. It is available in a universal fit and the jacket comes with several accessories. You get a whistle and the jacket also has reflection bands. In case of further inflation required, you also get oral tubes in the jacket to self-inflate to the required level.


  • Comes with 30 days money-back guarantee
  • An Automatic Inflatable Jacket
  • Comes with a whistle, reflection band and lifetime warranty


  • Need to replace cylinder after every inflation.

These were the best available models in the market and we hope that you are able to find one for yourself. If you are still confused then do not worry and check out the buying guide ahead. 

Buyers’ Guide to Choosing the Best Life Jacket For Kayaking

There are some of the factors that we would consider important while choosing the life jacket. You can have a look at them below for your reference. This will help you in choosing the life jacket that is perfect for you.

  • Size and Weight

Start by checking the size and weight of the jacket. The size should fit you and the jacket should be lightweight. Most of the jackets are free size but it is still worth checking the size of the jacket so as to ensure that there is no issue with the fitting of the jacket.

  • Material 

The next thing to consider is the material of the jacket that you are going to purchase. Most of the jackets are made of the same material but ensure that the material used is high quality. There should not be any issues with the type of material used in a jacket.

  • Features

Some of the jackets available in the market are loaded with extra features. You have an option between an automatic inflatable jacket and the ones which you have to inflate manually. The automatic ones are certainly better. Next, you can opt for the jacket that comes with a whistle or such accessories which can prove to be handy during a flip.

  • Cost and Review

Another important thing is the cost of the jacket. It should be in your budget and in addition to this, check of the reviews of the life jacket that you are going to purchase. You can even check this out with your friends as well if they are already using any of the life jackets.

  • Colour

Colour is yet another important aspect of choosing the right life jacket. Always and always choose a life jacket with bright colours. This way, you will be noticed easily by the lifeguard or the people around you and it can really make a great difference.

This was all about the life jackets. We hope the buying guide would have helped you in choosing the right jacket. We would always recommend you to invest in a good quality jacket so that you can use it for years without any such trouble.