Emergencies can happen at any moment, which is why it's always important to be prepared at all times.
Investing in the best first aid kit ensures that you're ready if you have to deal with any minor injuries. It could be anything from a cut or twisting an ankle, but your first aid kit should be well-stocked, ensuring that you have all you require for basic first aid.
Additionally, the best first aid kit should also be well organized, allowing for easy access. When in an emergency, it's usually hard to think straight; hence you need a first aid kit that's easy to maneuver. The items should also be within their expiry date, for instance, the medication, that way, you're not at a loss with expired supplies. Lastly, you want a first aid kit with a durable case that's preferable waterproof. The durability allows for long-term use, while the waterproof quality protects the items.
We reviewed our top picks of the best first aid kits and features to consider when buying them.
What Is A First Aid Kit?
A first aid kit is a box, backpack, or bag that holds supplies used to treat minor injuries, including cuts, scrapes, burns, bruises, and sprains. More elaborate first aid kits can also include survival supplies, life-saving emergency supplies, or convenience items like bug sting wipes or cold & flu medicines.
We reviewed our top five picks of the best first aid kits that are sure to come in handy when an emergency strikes.
Best First Aid Kits
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Best First Aid Kits Reviews
When it comes to combining value and quality, the Johnson & Johnson All-Purpose First Aid Kit gets it right.
The compact first aid kit contains 140 items to treat burns, cuts, insect bites, and minor wounds, as well as scrapes and rashes. It includes essential first aid and wound care supplies like cleansing wipes, gauze pads, assorted bandages, rolled gauze, antibiotic cream, itch stopping cream, acetaminophen caplets, an instant cold pack, and much more. It also includes brand-name Band-Aid adhesive bandages in assorted sizes for minor wounds, as well as Band-Aid Brand First Aid Products gauze pads, non-stick pads, and rolled gauze for larger minor wounds.
The Johnson & Johnson first aid kit also has two pairs of gloves and a first-aid informational pamphlet.
One problem with this kit is that the case isn't the best quality and may not hold up well over time. Also, the kit doesn't provide much organization. The items slide around the box, making them hard to locate.
This is the best first aid kit if looking for something compact and flexible. In addition, it allows you to pack what you need and are super portable.
The Welly first aid kit comes with 48 Standard flex fabric bandages, 30 Small flex fabric bandages, 3 Large fabric bandages, 12 Waterproof bandages, 1 Roll of tape, 5 Non-stick pads, 10 Wound prep pads, 9 Butterfly strips, 5 Triple antibiotic packets, 5 Hydrocortisone packets,, and 16 Ibuprofen pills.
The Welly first aid kit comes in a durable metal case that ensures all the supplies remain intact.
If looking for the best first aid kit that's well organized, the Surviveware kit is a perfect choice. The first aid kit features color-coded labeled compartments: red ( first aid), black (survival), green, and blue (hygiene). This makes it easier to find what you need quickly.
The first aid kit contains quality supplies such as an emergency blanket, various bandages, nitrile gloves, cotton gauze swabs, and other items for treating cuts and scrapes. It also contains items for alleviating burns and fever, which is a rarity among first aid kits. Last, Surviveware comes with a raft of handy survival tools like a flashlight, knife, handsaw, multitool, poncho, and more.
The first aid kit is easy to store and access. It also features a removable Velcro system, that so you can stick it wherever you want to keep it (or hook it in place with the included D-rings).
First responders are ideally required always to be prepared as they can be called to attend to an emergency at any point. The Lightning X First Responder Delux Kit is created to ensure that you have the required EMT supplies for basic life support care when responding to any emergency.
The durable duffle bag comes fully stocked with items like gauze, bandages, wipes, gloves, BP cuff, stethoscope, splints, C-Collar, tourniquet, and more. In addition, the bag is made of water-resistant nylon and has reflective striping for visibility on both the bag and the straps.
The first aid kit is designed to be well-organized allowing for easy access to what you need at a moment's notice. The bag also features side and front pockets, strong nylon straps with comfortable padding for shoulder support, and four colored pouches for high-priority items. The first aid kit is the go-to for emergency responders tackling physical injuries.
If planning on going hiking, backpacking, or any other trail-based activity, you'll need the best first aid kit with you in case of any emergencies.
Adventure Medical Kits are specially prepared to handle emergencies while on adventures. The first aid kit contains supplies for cuts and scrapes, medication to stop bleeding fast, and wound care.
The first aid kit features an organization system that organizes contents by injury into clearly labeled pockets, letting you easily find what you need in case of anything. In addition, the first aid supplies come packed in a durable, water-resistant medical bag.
The first aid kit is designed to fit easily into your backpack, equipping you with everything you need for an overnight adventure. It features an internal pouch zip that prevents the contents from sliding around and mixing.
Features to Consider when Buying Best First Aid Kit
First aid kits come in various shapes and sizes. You're likely to come across some in cylindrical cases no larger than water bottles, while others are small enough to fit easily in a backpack or fanny pack.
Generally, small and super light first aid kits are best suited for one to two people over single-day trips or brief overnight outings. However, most small or ultralight packs don't have sufficient supplies for larger groups or for trips that extend for long periods.
Larger kits are ideal and better for supporting a group of more than two people over longer trips. The downside is that they come with increased weight and volume.
When searching for the best first aid kits, weight is dependent on the type of activity you're undertaking. It's advisable to settle for a light first aid kit if your activity requires you to consider every ounce. However, less weight usually means fewer supplies and reduced quantities.
It's also worth noting that every first aid kit can be customized at home. If certain supplies are considered unnecessary, you can leave them behind to reduce the weight or replace them with supplies that better suit your needs.
A heavier kit usually means more supplies which are great for large groups.
The best first aid kits are designed to be durable; hence they should hold up to the conditions they are exposed to. In addition, the outer case should be hard-wearing and resistant. Some kits feature waterproof aluminum cases, while others are resistant to abrasion and hold up in the long term.
Ideally, you want a first aid kit that's waterproof since most medical supplies are fragile and vulnerable to water.
Additionally, it's important to check the expiration dates of supplies inside the first aid kit before purchasing. For example, most kits come with medications, which are all due to expire.
d) Type of Activity
Not all first aid kits are identical. They differ in that some are made for specific activities. Activity-specific kits tend to be less versatile than other kits but are ideal for those sticking to the specific activity.
These types of kits are helpful in that they are put together with special consideration for the kinds of injuries that are likely to occur during that activity. For example, adventure medical kits are likely to include plenty of supplies to deal with a sprained ankle or skinned knee.
The best first aid kits are well organized. When dealing with an emergency, the last thing you want to do is struggle with a poorly stocked and organized first aid kit.
Some first aid kits are well organized and have several pockets and dividers. Other kits include easy-to-read/color-coded labels, separate clear compartments for different items, and an itemized list of products so you can easily replace and restock. However, smaller kits can often become disorganized easily because of their lack of space, so ensure to get to know ahead of time the contents of the kit. This way, you'll know what to reach for in the event of an emergency.
Emergencies can happen at any time; hence it's always advisable to have a first aid kit within easy reach. Having a kit in your bathroom is just as important as having a small kit that can fit in your purse or the glove compartment of your car.
Essentially, it's recommended to have a stocked first aid kit that's readily accessible where you live and where you go. In addition, one should have at least several kits in multiple locations and know how to use the supplies inside.
Additionally, it's worth noting that items like bandages have a long shelf life, medicines, ointments, and survival items (food, water), may expire sooner (within one to five years). Therefore, ensure to check the expiration dates of products upon purchase and regularly check your kit for items that need to be replaced or replenished.
What Should A Basic First Aid Kit Have?
It's important to have a well-stocked first-aid kit in your home so you can deal with minor injuries and accidents.
A first aid kit should be locked and kept in a cool, dry place out of the reach of children.
A basic first aid kit can contain:
- plasters in different sizes and shapes
- small, medium, and large sterile gauze dressings
- at least two sterile eye dressings
- triangular bandages
- crêpe rolled bandages
- safety pins
- disposable sterile gloves
- sticky tape or medical tape
- digital thermometer
- anti-itch or skin rash creams, like hydrocortisone
- antibiotic cream or spray to relieve insect bites and stings
- antiseptic cream
- pain relievers such as paracetamol (or infant paracetamol for children), aspirin (not to be given to children under 16), or ibuprofen
- antihistamine cream or tablets
- distilled water for cleaning wounds
- eyewash and eye bath
- antiseptic wipes
- antibiotic ointment
- CPR mask
- adhesive bandages