We’ve already discussed several options for improvised zombie armor.  Duct tape, leather, and heavy clothing can all defend well against the limited jaw strength of the undead.  But an new innovation by researchers at the University of South Carolina has lead to the possibility of a simple t-shirt becoming impenetrable body armor.

Study lead, Dr. Xiaodong Li, had this to say about his team’s work:

“This groundbreaking new study opens up unprecedented opportunities.”

By combining the soft carbon in a standard cotton shirt with boron, the same substance used to fortify tanks, a new lightweight,  super-strong and ultra-tough material was created.  And though boron is one of the toughest materials on the planet, the transformed shirts were still flexible enough to bend, a major improvement over the heavy plates currently used in bulletproof vests and body armor.

Though there is still a long way to go before we’ll find t-shirt armor on retail shelves, this new advancement in personal defense and survival technology is promising to say the least.


  1. this is a application use kinda thing. if you know your going to have to deal with a horde then full body plate armor the way to go. and yes i know its not that practical. but it offers best protection. for thos on the move a leather chain mail armor would be best. you use chain mail in places where need more protection and still alows alot of movment i work with a leather jaket all day so im well versed in its abulitys. in flame resistance tear risistence and piercing resistance. the saliva issue is kinda ezy to solve apply water repellent to the leather or oil. tho oil may turn you into a potencel match. and i do agree that no armor maybe the best choice tho good leather boots and gloves are a must!!! dont wana get an ankle bitter.

  2. stormtrooper outfit lol or nazgul outfit the full steel one

  3. I still put in my vote for wearing a fencing uniform under regular clothes!

  4. Spay your fore arms with bed liner because if it I dog proof it is zombie proof.

  5. Speed and agility are more important than body armor. Sure, a little protection on your hands and forearms will come in handy during a melee, but if your not able to move fast and freely enough, you may find yourself in the middle of a virtual “herd” of the undead. At that point, no amount of body armor will prove effective enough.

  6. Best defense against a zombie bite: dont get bitten. Hopefully the zombies you face are the slow moving type that you can easily step away from. Even if you developed anti-peircing armor you still have to deal with the pressure behind the bite which can snap bones and still tear skin and with a grip that is as deadly as the bite not getting caught by them is probably the best option. I would suggest some head gear that doesn’t restrict your eyesight but still protects you from getting lethal zombie blood in your eyes or mouth and some strong but light clothing that allows you to move but wont rip and expose you to potential infection if you take a rough fall.

  7. who here can bite through a t shirt?

    • Joshua Wiebelhaus

      You might not be able to bite through a shirt now but that’s because your teeth are flat not sharp like a dog or other carnivore but once infected you’ll be biting on bones breaking and chipping bits of your teeth making sharp points that cane easily bite through several layers of t-shirts.

  8. The problem is that you don’t have to punture the clothing in order to break the skin. I’ve been cut and scratched before by by things that never tore or damaged my t-shirt. Just the pressure can break the skin without the teeth making actual contact. Then it’s just a simple drop of “dead boy” saliva soaking in. Duct tape does seem to be a good idea, though. I think if you got over run by them, it really would not matter what you are wearing.

  9. rip stop material is also very good.. many of the worlds armed forces use this now (the UK and US in particular) and with a layered system underneath and/or riot/motorbike armour which is lightweight would make an efficient and modular system. Thats what Ive got anyway !

  10. spandex. X)

  11. to hell with armour completely shave yourself and baby oil up. no need to warry about getting grabbed if you just slip through 😉

  12. Two words…. RIOT GEAR!!

  13. It may be worthwhile to consider motorcycle body armor. Most of it seems to be realistically priced and shouldn’t make you surrender too much range of movement.

  14. Such technology would be interesting, but it would never ever be used in combat, and therefore invented. Kinetic energy weapon wounds have multiple issues at hand one of which is called concussive force. Put paper up against a wall and hit it with a hammer. Doesn’t do much. But the hammer never went through the paper…

  15. quite fankly, I belive that military BDU is the most useful armor as it is resistant to liquids(ie- saliva or blood), lightweight/flexible, allows your skin to breath, and quite durable

    • I agree, a wet suit/and chain mail shark-proof suit would be best. Body heat would be a massive issue though, and once a shark-suit link is broken, it’s virtually impossible to repair.

      • Those shark suits are crazy heavy, too!

      • I’ve made a suit of chain mail using aluminum rods from Home Depot. Granted, it took me a while, but it’s light weight, and in a pinch, will protect against bitters. IT won’t stop a sword or dagger, but using steel ring chainmail under or over clothes in tactical areas (neck, forearms, etc.) might not be a bad strategy.
        I think Jeremy has the right idea, but practical testing is still required. I’ve put my links to the test, and I’ve been happy with my results. By combining hoodies and jackets with my aluminum links, I’ve been able to protect my human arm analog with only ‘bruising’. The steel is the way to go, but as Josh pointed out, it can get heavy and won’t be the first choice if stealth is your game.

  16. this is a rather easy subject since the human bite force is rather low, just get some high density foam or hard plastic, fashion them into a good suit and you can lay there with zombies in your face for a while, laughing…hopefully.

    • but zombies have zero pain receptors, so they’ll keep going long after a normal human would call it quits. They’ll probably bite and budgeon their way to your soft, gooey center.

  17. Something else to consider, fencing jackets, especially a lamé designed for electrical use. they are made of a light, breatable, yet sturdy fabric that is less restrictive than motion restrictive than leather (it is equiptment for a sport) but nearly as tough. As an added bonus, lamés for electric have a mesh of steel wires all over them for added strength. Possibly the best anti-zombie torso armor that is easily aquired.

  18. when shit gets real i’m all about the leather.
    i’ve got a few bike jackets and pairs of trouser’s as well as gloves and a couple of full face helmes tho am debating the helmets for use as they may impeed vision?
    Also leather can be minorly restrictive during combat so it always pays to practice movements.
    i’m not saying do a gymnastic routine but practice running, swinging weaons and fighting in leather so that when the time comes you know it aint gonna get ya killed

  19. i cant bite through a shirt now so how would we get infected un a raincoat we could get bite injuries but not infected

    • Saliva….you can still puncture skin without ripping the shirt and the spit of the zombie will be on the shirt and seep right thru into your wound.

  20. they were working on this through making bullet proof paper using plant cellulose and carbon this will be sweet

  21. One hopes that when, or if these are released en mass to the public that you will have them available.

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