Prepper gear: The best stormproof matches for your survival bag
By Zoey Sky // May 11, 2023

Fire starting using basic tools like flint and steel is an important survival skill, but that doesn't mean you can't bring useful and convenient items in your survival and bug-out bags like stormproof matches.


When SHTF, you can benefit from fire-starting tools like stormproof matches, especially if you are camping or bugging out on a windy or rainy day. (h/t to

Why you should invest in stormproof matches

Stormproof matches aren't cheap, but they're worth investing in if you want to make sure you can cook and stay warm when disaster strikes.

These unique matches are made by dipping heavily coated phosphorus onto a small stick to create a reliable firestarter – a match that will stay lit even when exposed to wind or water.

You can buy regular matches from stores or get free, cheap matchbooks from bars and random places. While strike-anywhere and long-burn matches are also useful, it's best to get stormproof matches when it comes to survival.

There are several sizes and brands to choose from, depending on what you need for your survival kit.

Best budget stormproof matches

Coghlan's Storm Matches are suitable if you want to get stormproof matches while on a budget because they are effective and affordable.

They have a reduced burn time but are cheaper, making them a great alternative if you want to save a bit of money on your survival gear.

When buying matches, check if you are getting Coghlan's Storm Matches or Waterproof Matches. The waterproof matches are not as effective and they sometimes won't light in high humidity conditions.

Make sure you get the Storm Matches, which have a 10-second burn time, but are consistent and effective. The matches come with a simple waterproof container for storage.

Get Coghlan’s Storm Matches if you want to stock up on budget stormproof matches for your survival kit and bug-out bag.

Best stormproof matches

UCO Stormproof Matches are waterproof, windproof and stormproof, earning them the title of the best stormproof matches overall.

UCO's standard stormproof matches are ideal for any weather condition without being too expensive. They rank in the middle of performance and value.

The matches are 2.75 inches long, with a 15-second burn. They are fully submergible, with a persistent flame in any condition.

UCO Stormproof Matches come in a waterproof floating case with 40 matches, so if you use them sparingly you should have extras when SHTF.

You can choose a bright yellow or forest green container for the matches. (Related: Survival essentials: 5 Bushcraft skills for preppers.)

Best upgrade survival matches

Zippo Typhoon Matches are the best "upgrade" survival matches if you are looking for large, versatile matches. They are almost impossible to blow out, will burn underwater and will start a fire in most conditions.

Zippo Typhoon Matches are high quality and are larger (four inches) and heavier than other stormproof matches on this list, with a much longer burn time of over 30 seconds. The matches easily strike and burn even after being soaked in water.

You can also light a flame even if they are submerged in water. The Zippo Typhoon Matches come in a quality case, with the lid and the storage chamber using high-quality O-rings to make it watertight.

The container has a sealed strike cap, textured grip, lanyard hole and storage area for tinder. Get Zippo Typhoon Matches if you want to upgrade the matches for your bug-out bag.

Factors to consider when buying stormproof matches

If you want to check out other stormproof matches not included in this list, consider other important features before buying:

  • Material
  • Size and burn time
  • Value
  • Versatility

Matches that have these features will help you find a great product spending too much.

Value: Cost vs. benefit

Some matches are cheap, but you often get what you pay for.

Matchbooks from bars are free, but they won't be as useful as stormproof matches, especially when time is of the essence and you need to start a fire to prevent hypothermia.

At the same time, you don't have to spend all your money on waterproof matches if you are on a tight budget.


Long phosphorus tips separate stormproof matches from "waterproof" matches. The tip extension gives the match the extra burn time and the waterproof ignition source needed to keep it burning through submersion. It also prevents the wood of the match from getting wet.

Both stormproof matches and waterproof matches have a waterproof coating, and some brands have treated wood sticks.

Size and burn time

The length of the match is the biggest factor for burn time.

The amount of phosphorus applied helps boost the resilience of the flame more than the burn time.


Survival matches and the cases used to store them need to be versatile and sturdy.

Most of this versatility revolves around them being what they advertise:

  • Waterproof
  • Windproof
  • Stormproof
  • Submersible

Beyond these criteria, the container should also be lightweight, portable and thoughtful in design.

Tips for using and storing stormproof matches

Ensure that your matches last longer by keeping the matches and striker as dry as possible.

Even though the matches are waterproof, some strikers are not. Keeping the latter dry ensures that the strike is easier with dry friction when starting your fire.

Aside from the larger phosphorus coating and waterproofing, stormproof matches light the same way as typical matches: By dragging the head of the match quickly across the striker.

Before you strike a match, set up your campfire or any other material you are trying to light. During emergencies where your supplies are limited, you don't want to waste matches if you don't have a lot in your bag.

When stored properly in a sturdy container, safety matches should last for at least six months to a year. You can make them last for two to three years by storing them in a waterproof container.

Stormproof matches will last even longer. Stored correctly, they can last up to two or three years, but if they are stored correctly in a waterproof container, they can last at least decades.

When storing matches for survival purposes, don't forget to rotate your stored matches and replace them with fresh ones regularly. This ensures that when you need them, they will still work.

Even if you don't camp regularly, you can benefit from having survival matches in your bug-out bag or everyday carry kit since they will help you start a fire quickly when facing a disaster.

A stormproof match may be a small survival tool, but they are the ultimate fire starter for survival scenarios. Creating a fire is extremely important, especially when you are forced to spend time outdoors when SHTF.

Visit for more articles on useful items to include in your bug-out bag.

Watch the video below for tips on how to make a Dakota fire hole.

This video is from the Lone Wolf Prepper channel on

More related stories:

Basic outdoor survival skills that will help you when SHTF.

Prepping checklist: Camping essentials to pack in your survival bag.

Do you have these essential items in your survival fire starter kit?

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