5 Best Inflatable Life Jackets (Reviews Updated 2022)

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There is nothing better than spending the day out on the water. Whether the day is being enjoyed by fishing, kayaking, canoeing, or just relaxing out on a boat, there is one thing that you need. You need to have a reliable inflatable life jacket. Life jackets that inflate can be bulky and uncomfortable, but an inflatable life jacket is small and lightweight.

Best Inflatable Life Jackets

Here are our top five best inflatable life jackets.

1. Absolute Outdoor Inflatable Life Jacket

Absolute Outdoor Onyx A M 24 Automatic Manual Inflatable Life Jacket

The Absolute Inflatable life jacket is approved by the U.S. Coastguard. Its protective design is made up of black nylon. The jacket is also available in blue or pink. The jacket ensures the wearer stays cool and comfortable with its low profile design.

  • Features Manual or Automatic Inflation
  • Includes A Stretchable Insert for Adjustment
  • Compatible with an A/M rearming kit
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2. SALVS Inflatable Life Jacket

Salvs Automatic Manual Inflatable Life Jacket For Adults Pfd For Kayak, Fishing, Sailing Life V

This inflatable all-black life vest is designed with the adventurous adult in mind. The vest is designed for kayaking, fishing, and sailing. The vest weighs less than two pounds and offers a comfortable fit. It allows the wearer full mobility while keeping them safe.

  • Features Manual or Automatic Inflation
  • Offers Self Inflating Technology
  • The Fit is Entirely Adjustable
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3. Eyson Inflatable Life Jacket

Eyson Inflatable Life Jacket Life Vest Basic Manual

This lightweight, camouflage life jacket is durable and long-lasting. The life jacket is CE certified and adjusts to provide a comfortable fit for adult and youth wearers.

  • The Jacket is Lightweight
  • The Eyson is machine washable and air drys quickly
  • Features SOLAS approved 3M reflectors
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4. Onyx Inflatable Life Jacket

Onyx M 24 In Sight Manual Inflatable Life Jacket, Blue

The Onyx inflatable life jacket promotes a comfortable fit through its adjustable strap while providing predictable inflation. The life jacket is blue but features piping that increases visibility.

  • It is a Type V life vest
  • Provides a Comfortable Fit
  • Comes with a washable, mesh carry bag
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5. Mustang Survival Inflatable Life Jacket

Mustang Survival Md201602256 M.i.t. 100 Inflatable Pfd Automatic Life Jacket

This survival-style life jacket has a stylish black and yellow cover. The vest is durable but easy to pack with a single fold. Comprised of an extremely durable material called 500 denier cordura.

  • 26 pounds of buoyancy
  • Inflator inspection window
  • Advanced inflation technology
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Inflatable Life Jacket Buying Guide

Here you’ll learn everything you need to know about inflatable life jackets.


An inflatable jacket is considered to be a Type V Inflatable Device. Within this category, there are three forms the life jacket could take. Each style is designed with a specific activity in mind.

Special Use

A Special Use Life Jacket is specifically designed to meet a particular need. The label will mention the specific use of the jacket. A few common options are deck suits, paddling vests, and float coats.

Automatic Inflation

An Automatic Inflation Life Jacket is generally worn for boating and similar activities. This type of life jacket is commonly referred to as a deck suit or float coat.

Hybrid Inflation

The Hybrid Inflation Life Jacket is intended to be used when there is assistance nearby. The jacket was initially designed for a variety of boating activities. There are two types of hybrid inflation life jackets, manual inflation, and an automatic inflation jacket.


Life vests are generally made of a few specific materials. There is not much variance in which types of materials are selected. Most life vests consist of a combination of the following materials:

Metal or Plastic

Metal and plastic are often found on life jackets. The materials are used to create the zippers and fasteners that strap the wearer into the jacket. Generally, the life jacket will consist of one or the other, but occasionally the jacket may use a combination of the two materials.


Velcro is another material that is used for fastening. It is often combined with either metal or plastic to create a system meant to hold the wearer inside.


The life jacket houses one of two kinds of waterproof foam. Polyethylene foam or polyvinyl chloride foam are the two materials that provide the life jacket with its buoyancy.

Nylon, Polyester and Nylon Webbing

The outer parts of the life jacket are comprised of nylon, polyester, and nylon webbing. These materials hold up well in water and hold color extremely well. These are the materials that provide bright coloring associated with life vests. Nylon webbing is the material that makes up the straps of a life vest.


Life jackets have a variety of uses, aside from the most obvious ones. They are generally worn to keep the wearer’s head above water, but they are also used for multiple other things.

Assist In Rescue

Life jackets are created in bright colors for a reason. If a passenger goes overboard, they are much easier to spot in a neon-colored life vest than if they were simply paddling to stay afloat.

Decrease Impact of a Fall

Life vests can cushion a fall. This aids in reducing injuries and lessening the impact of an accident.

Reduce the Risk of Hypothermia

Life jackets are designed to hold in heat. They also keep a person’s head above the water, thus allowing them to stay dry. This is beneficial if an overboard passenger has a long wait for rescue.