9 Best IFAK Kits (& DIY Kits) For Medical Emergencies

By Jason K. | Last Updated: July 19, 2022

Skilled Survival’s Comprehenvise IFAK Buyers Guide

Best IFAK Kits And Pouches

Knowledge is power, and the people with the best gear (and know how to use it) keep their heads in an emergency.

And it all starts with owning the right Individual First Aid Kit (IFAK).

A medical kit that’s not so heavy you leave it behind but includes more than just band-aids and sunscreen.

After reading this, you’ll know what you need to patch someone up in a traumatic accident or emergency.

Today, I’ll use my extensive experience using medical gear (as a Mountain Rescue Volunteer, & Offical Survival Gear Tester) to cover the following topics:


Best IFAKs Kits For Sale

What Is An IFAK Kit?

Who Should Own An IFAK Pouch

Best IFAK Features To Look For 

IFAK Medical Kit Contents List

How To Build An IFAK

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micro trauma kit - pocket trauma kit

Best IFAK Kits On The Market Today

↓ MyFAK Traum Kit – MyMedic Review ↓

EVERLIT Emergency Trauma Kit

Everlit is a company founded by US military veterans.

So they know what it takes to keep someone alive in an emergency!

Its mission is to help people during disasters where the right gear can save lives.

This IFAK trauma kit comes with all the practical survival gear without fluff.

They supply the equipment for massive bleeding and respiratory blockages. Plus, it's ready to treat open chest wounds and hypothermia.

Everett is a company in the trenches and knows what's needed to make it out alive.

  • MOLLE compatible
  • Universal bandage pack
  • 36" folded splint
  • Ideal for police, medics, hunters, military, and firefighters
  • A bit expensive
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Lightning X Gunshot Trauma/Hemorrhage Control Kit

Lightning X IFAK kits use a high-quality nylon construction.

They are ideal for emergency service workers, including police, military, and medics.

They are fully equipped to handle most emergencies and are MOLLE-compatible.

The Lightning X is a proper field kit designed for severe trauma situations.

It has many extra features, like eight elastic storage hoops and a drainage grommet.

Users praised the construction quality, but some supplies were less practical.

  • Great design with many compartments and pouches
  • Essential trauma medical equipment
  • Light-weight
  • Not an everyday first aid kit
  • Not pre-assembled. Supplies are shipped and placed inside the case without placement in pouches.
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↓ Lighting X Individual First Aid Kit IFAK Review ↓

LIVANS Tactical EMT Pouch

Livans has made a larger IFAK loaded with features for every outdoor adventurer.

MOLLE-style attachments allow you to connect to vests, belts, and backpacks.

So this will easily pair with your current survival bag setups.

With the rip-away velcro panel feature, you can get at it for fast emergency first aid.

Most IFAK kits are small. Because they only house most essential equipment, but they have little room for much else...

Not with this IFAK!

There are several dedicated IFAK pouches for your gear.

And an inside mesh pocket and elastic straps house the medical supplies.

The bottom line is:

Livans makes a great IFAK bag for all your survival and trauma gear. But note, there is NO equipment with this IFAK bag.

So you are free to stock it with everything you need.

  • A high-density polyester with double stitching for long-lasting durability
  • It comes with a Red Cross patch for easy medical identification
  • No trauma supplies included - you're just buying an IFAK bag
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↓ Budget Rip-Away Medical IFAK Pouch ↓

Ever Ready First Aid Tactical Trauma IFAK Kit

Ever Ready has a deluxe kit ideal for treating injuries and emergencies.

It's small and light-weight while carrying most trauma essentials, including:

  • A clotting sponge
  • A tourniquet
  • An Israeli Bandage
  • Plus, other trauma essentials

This kit is ideal to have in the car for emergencies.

Plus, it works well for hunting or camping trips and even those wanting to be ready for anything.

Almost all users were pleased with this quality IFAK.

  • Light-weight
  • It comes with deluxe trauma equipment as well as everyday bandages
  • Basic bag without compartments or Velcro strips
  • A little small to house any extra survival items
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Grullin has an outdoor series of products, including survival gear and first aid kits.

This IFAK comes with essentials for bleeding control and massive wound treatment.

It's perfect for outdoor adventures, travel, and use in accidents.

They have packed this kit with a fractured board for splinting limbs.

Plus, you'd expect most of the popular tactical first aid supplies in an IFAK.

It also has your basic first aid supplies for minor injuries.

  • Waterproof rip-away nylon design with Velcro panel
  • Standard trauma gear with the addition of a fractured board
  • It needs more compact gauze and a chest seal
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MediTac IFAK Molle - Eagle Type Tactical Trauma Kit

Here's another quality IFAK from Meditac.

This kit is ready to meet all traumatic situations with a complete blood control kit. For example:

  • There are bandages for hemorrhage control
  • As well as a tourniquet for limb compression

It has a MOLLE IFAK pouch designed to fit on your compatible vest, gear belt, or bag.

Thus, it makes this pack ideal as an accessory to the gear you already have.

It also contains extra emergency tools and equipment to round this IFAK out.

  • Small pack for trauma but needs more standard dressings
  • More of an add-on to a larger IFAK
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Lightning X Rip-Away Officer's Patrol Tactical Gunshot & Trauma Kit

This Rip Away IFAK is another terrific deluxe IFAK option.

Although it's a big bag, I've included it because it has almost everything necessary for severe traumas.

You get a:

  • Chest seal twin pack
  • Gen 7 tourniquet
  • Israeli Bandage
  • Compact gauze
  • Quick stop blood stop spray
  • And so much more

It's designed to fit MOLLE gear with five rows of hoops but works excellent as a patrol kit for police officers and EMT medics.

It will fit on any vehicle headrest or tactical backpack.

So you can open the three-tiered storage compartments while leaving them mounted.

The bottom line is it's a great for any serious adventurer.

  • It comes with all essentials for trauma first aid
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Hook and loop MOLLE panel to mount other kits
  • Red Cross emblem
  • Very large kit
  • Great for a car or backpack but not for a battle belt
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What Is An IFAK Kit?

IFAK stands for ‘Individual First Aid Kit” or ‘Improved First Aid Kit.”

Let’s get things straight right off the bat. An IFAK is NOT a standard first aid kit.

An IFAK isn’t a kit for carrying baby wipes, aspirins, and chapstick.

Typical first aid kits are made for bumps, bruises, and cuts and can be helpful in your home.

An IFAK medic kit is a first-aid responders bag for traumatic injuries.

They tend to be tailor-made for the type of person carrying them.

And houses essential life-saving medical devices and supplies, such as:

  • Bleed Control Supplies
  • Tourniquets
  • A Nasal Pharyngeal Airway
  • Plus, Other Major Wound Treatments

Before the acronym ‘IFAK” became popular, military medics carried “IFAKs type” kits into dangerous situations.

These small portable trauma kits treat and prevent various illnesses and injuries.

The bottom line is:

IFAKS are compact, wearable trauma kits that go with you.

Side Note: There’s also the acronym TFAK – which stands for Trauma First Aid Kit.

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Who Should Own One?

Today everyone should have a tactical IFAK.

Civilians are usually first on the scene during a car accident or workplace injury.

Before the medical pros arrive, you may need to give life-saving treatment.

Even with extensive trauma kits in their emergency vehicles, paramedics and EMTs wear simple IFAK pouches for quicker responses.

If you enjoy hiking or camping in remote areas, you need an IFAK.

Hunting and fishing excursions don’t happen near hospitals.

Ambulances can’t get to you in the remote wild.

So you’re on your own whenever you’re deep in the bush.

And if there’s a traumatic injury, an IFAK is essential to saving your life or the life of a loved one.

The point is this:

Get an IFAK and stock it with the essentials you need for a severe medical emergency.

Tailor it to what you’re doing and your medical skill level.

That way, you’ll be prepared for the most likely accidents you’ll come across.

Best IFAK Features To Look For

Your IFAK can be in the form of a knapsack, bag, or pouch.

It can carry critical emergency medical supplies as long as there’s quick access to what you need.

Here are a few of the essential features a quality IFAK should have:

Tear Away Pouches

Depending on the size of your IFAK, you should have side pouches that hold vital supplies.

These IFAK pouches should detach quickly from the main kit so you can get what you need rapidly.

IFAK pouches should also be MOLLE compatible to add to the outside of a survival backpack.

Heavy-Duty Zipper

You don’t want to have a problem opening up your pack in a crisis.

A snagged zipper could turn into a delay in accessing critical supplies when time is of the essence.

A robust zipper will keep your supplies secure and open rapidly with confidence.

Well-Laid-Out Interior

When you open your IFAK, the layout inside must be well organized.

Separate zipped areas, pouches, and compartments can separate your items.

That way, you don’t have to fumble through a pile of stuff to find what you need.

Robust Handles and Straps

You must react quickly to a survival situation; bugging out can happen quickly.

Robust handles on your pack are vital for rapid moves.

You may have to grab and go fast and run long distances.

Having straps to wear your IFAK as a backpack or fanny pack will keep it secure on your body.

Compact and Lightweight

You don’t need a bulky, heavy bag to carry around.

Your IFAK should only contain the essentials you need for the situation.

The easier it is to pack, the more likely you will bring it along on all your adventures.

Here’s an excellent video that shares even more advanced IFAK features and tips:

↓ Basics Of Individual First Aid Kits ↓

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IFAK Kits Contents

IFAK Content List | How To Build An IFAK From Scratch

You should build a DIY IFAK bag according to your risk profile and level of training.

They should include basic first aid supplies, such as bandaids and painkillers.

But, the primary purpose of your IFAK medical kit is to treat severe trauma.

There are many pre-packed kits out there you can buy.

But for those serious, building your own can be better based on your needs.

Because you don’t want to make your pack any heavier than it needs to be.

Traditional medical emergency procedures focus on ABC (Airway, Breathing, Circulation).

In a survival or combat situation, the military uses the MARCH algorithm.

This acronym lays out the necessary steps in priority for saving lives in combat.

  • M-massive hemorrhage – Arterial blood is pumping out of a person
  • A-airway – Any obstruction in the airway
  • R-respiratory – An injury like a collapsed lung or sucking chest wound
  • C-circulation – General bleeding from the body
  • H-hypothermia – The body loses heat faster than it can make it

You should pack an IFAK for individual trauma emergencies and minor injuries.

Here is a list of your must-have IFAK content to include in your own DIY IFAK build (watch the video or read our list below):

↓ The Bear Minimum IFAK Content List ↓

Compact Gauze

Gauze may be the most important thing you carry.

Compact gauze is a multi-use item essential to pack a large wound and stop bleeding.

You can also wrap an injury and make a sling or splint.

It’s versatile and cheap, so have a few rolls in your kit.

Combat Gauze

This gauze is more expensive but vital in stopping massive bleeds.

It has a coagulating agent in the material.

This material helps to stop bleeding faster, and you apply it directly to a cut artery.

Their primary function is direct contact with a massive hemorrhage.

Israeli Bandage

This type of bandage works on hemorrhaging and provides compression.

It combines a sterile dressing and an elastic bandage to keep constant pressure on a wound and also comes with a closure bar attached to secure it in place.

An Israeli Bandage works well for head or groin injuries too, and if you are alone, you can quickly put it on with one hand.

These are another must-have in your IFAK kit list.


A tourniquet is a band that stops blood flow from an extremity wound.

Complications from using one can lead to tissue damage.

But it can keep a person stable until you get them to a hospital.

Deep cuts, gunshot wounds, or crushed limbs are situations for a tourniquet.

Take the time to learn how to use one properly.

Nasal Pharyngeal Airway

In some situations, you must supply an open airway to an injured person.

Having an NPA is the best way to treat an airway.

The tongue or airway muscles can block the throat in an unconscious person.

That’s why you need to get them breathing again FAST.

It’s easily inserted into the nostril to open up an airway and keep them alive.

Chest Seal

If you get a puncture in the chest that causes air to pour in, you need to close that up ASAP.

Using a chest seal like the HALO Seal is a quick way to seal the hole.

Note: It sticks to skin, hair, blood, and sand. It’s also flexible and covers large, uneven areas around a wound.

Burn Gel and Dressing

Burns tend to occur unexpectantly from open flames or hot surfaces.

So it’s essential to carry burn gel to ease pain and help jumpstart healing in the affected area ASAP.

You can also get a burn dressing with water gel in the material to apply right on the burn.

From there, you can use gauze to cover the area.

Control Wraps

Along with tourniquets, a control wrap can help stop bleeding.

But it can do so without cutting off direct circulation.

You can also use them as an outside dressing over the gauze and extra support for sprained knees and ankles.

Besides these “trauma” focused items, your IFAK content list should also have additional medical supplies, including:

  • Nitrile gloves
  • Different sizes of Band-Aids
  • Neosporin
  • Pain relief (aspirin)
  • Flashlight
  • Tweezers
  • Shears

Here’s an excellent video that goes over (in detail) how to use an IFAK in an emergency:

↓ How To Use Your IFAK ↓

Final Thoughts

You now have everything you need to know about IFAK Tactical First Aid Kits.

You’ve learned what they are, what’s in them, and where to get them.

Now it’s time to equip yourself for the next great adventure!

Jason K.

  • Born & Raised In The Remote Woods Of Michigan
  • Engineering Degree From A Major University
  • Long Standing Member Of Mountain Search & Rescue
  • Offical Gear Tester For Several Outdoor Companies
  • Avid Outdoorsman: Backpacking, Camping, Fishing
  • Years Researching & Writing About Surival & Gear
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