In most cases, clothes are designed to make you stand out from the crowd, but gray man gear is the exact opposite. Being well prepared for any disaster or emergency situation whilst still blending in with groups of people is essential to pull off a successful gray man disguise.
Whether you’re a prepper, survivalist or simply want to ensure that you can conceal how well equipped you are, our guide will help you to find the very best technical clothing and loadout gear to achieve your goal. We understand the importance of being prepared while maintaining discretion to the outside world.
We’ve extensively researched the best tactical outfits and loadout gear to have as a gray man and created this guide to make your preparations easier.
Let’s get started.
Dressing to blend in with the crowd isn’t difficult but there are some specific pitfalls that you’ll want to ensure you avoid as they can be an instant give away.
Think carefully about your clothing and how you will be viewed by other people. Clothing is the first thing people are likely to notice about you. Just from looking at your outfit, people will make instant assumptions regarding who you are and what you’re doing.
Try to see yourself through other people’s eyes and if you’re struggling to make a judgment on whether a piece of clothing is right, double check with a trusted friend or family member.
These are some of our top tips on what clothing is best for Gray Man Gear:
1. Go as plain as possible
You’ll want to avoid anything brightly colored so stick to black and grey wherever you can. Do not wear any noticeable graphics or distinctive patterns. Always avoid any camouflage or army regulation style clothing.
Try to avoid even the smallest logos. A motif in one corner of a jumper or wording on a shirt may be all that’s needed to trigger someone’s attention.
2. Fit in with others
If you know the area that you’re going to be based in, try to take note of the most popular clothing choices in the area.
If you’re going to be in a smart financial district, you’ll stand out if you’re wearing casual trousers and a hooded sweatshirt. Equally, if you’re going to be in an outdoors setting, aim to look like any of the average hikers that you want to be mistaken for.
3. Use functional clothing (to an extent)
Depending on where you’ll be spending most of your time, you may be able to get away with a fair amount of functional clothing.
Everything from North Face jackets to hiking and trail shoes have entered the mainstream in terms of leisure wear in the last few years.
Items such as waterproof ski jackets, functional hiking trousers with pockets and backpacks with multiple compartments are all items you could wear in a normal setting without getting any looks. You’ll need to use your judgment however to consider your exact surroundings.
4. Consider the weather
It’s much easier to conceal items, bags and equipment under multiple layers in the middle of winter. The summer and warmer climates are much harder to adapt to but don’t be tempted to cover up.
Wearing thick down jackets or long sweatshirts on a hot day will instantly raise awareness so try to go with other methods of concealment or use bags for storage instead of clothing.
Let’s break down the different categories of clothing to help you with some more specific ideas for your gray man outfit.
Hats / Headgear
Keeping your head covered is a brilliant way to start when you’re dressing as a gray man as this instantly covers up your hair. If you do have longer hair, make sure it is all tucked into the hat to conceal the color and style.
To cover your ears in cold weather, try a plain black beanie hat which can be easily pulled down to conceal more of your face. It also provides warmth and stops significant amounts of heat loss from your head.
In warmer weather or if you’re in a more urban setting, you really can’t beat a simple grey baseball cap. This is one of the cheapest and easiest things to keep in your bag and it won’t take up much space at all.
For cold conditions a balaclava style head covering could be the best option. Be careful to try to choose a more fashionable style such as this one instead of anything that has a more military appearance.
Tactical Clothing and Jackets
Try to go for a casual jacket if possible especially if you’re going to be in urban areas. You could always try a ski jacket restyle as this will be warm, waterproof and windproof. Aim to buy in black or grey rather than any neon or bright colors.
If you’re worried about how to keep warm whilst still looking like a commuter or city go-er, try using base layers. This will allow you to get tactical on your under layers and then cover up with standard civilian clothes.
Another great option are tactical shirts that you can buy in standard colors such as navy blue. These have brilliant features such as vertical document pockets and zip fastenings for extra security. Worn under a normal sweatshirt you won’t look remotely out of place.
It’s easy to get inconspicuous tactical pants.. The tactical pants you go for should be plain in color, easy to move in, have compartments for important items, and be able to protect your legs from various weather conditions.
Some options you can go for are a pair of hiking trousers that will provide you with pockets and inner compartments but don’t make you stand out.
Layers are another clever way to dress when you’re aiming for gray man disguise. Try using quick drying jogging pants next to your skin and then cover up with denim or chinos in order to blend in.
If you want something tough and durable that’ll blend in a city environment, you could opt for a pair of work pants commonly worn by construction workers. Try to match the rest of your outfit to this if you decide on this type of pants so that they don’t stand out.
Trail shoes, sports sneakers and hiking boots have developed massively in recent decades so you’ll find it easy to find a good supportive pair to wear with any gray man outfit.
Most active wear shoes are brightly coloured and often have a logo to show their brand. Although this means that you won’t necessarily stand out if you choose a design like this, try and stay neutral with greys or black if possible. Trail and hiking shoes are also a good option as they’ll give you a supportive shoe in which you can move quickly across different surfaces.
A boot style is a useful option if you’re going to be in cold conditions or want to conceal equipment such as a tracking device or a multi purpose knife against your ankle. Don’t wear heavy hunting boots and avoid all camouflage patterns. Try something designed for hiking that could be mistaken for a work or fashion boot.
Watches can be a real give away and lots of people notice an expensive or distinctive watch on a wrist. Make yourself unremarkable by choosing a common brand of inexpensive watches.
Apple watches are now so common that very few people will look twice at you. They can also be excellent for communication and GPS.
You could also opt for a simple digital Casio model or a classic leather analogue watch for a more traditional appearance. If you do want to incorporate instruments such as a compass into your watch, try a Garmin watch. These are rugged and built for outdoors but they’ve becoming increasingly common so you won’t stand out in an urban area.
The Gray Man Loadout gear basically covers essential items such as key tools and supplies to help you in the event of a disaster or emergency.
These items will make up your EDC Gear and you’ll want to ensure that they are always with you and always kept in good condition. You never know when you might need them so always ensure that you maintain them by regularly performing tasks such as:
- Repacking and replacing any items that you have moved or used in your EDC bag
- Charging all electronic items that require power
- Cleaning knives after use and drying them properly to prevent rust
- Sharpening knives regularly
- Replacing items from your medical supplies that you may have used
Carrying your EDC Gear
The first thing to get right is the bag you’ll be using for concealing your edc gear. We’ve done extensive research into the best grayman bags on the market for you to keep all of your supplies safe and secure. Check out our list of grey man backpack recommendations here when making your decision. (LINK HERE TO GRAYMAN BACKPACK ARTICLE)
You can also try a discreet shoulder option that is compact yet functional. It can be carried easily across your shoulder giving you maximum security by keeping your items as close to you as possible. This is a good EDC grayman bag if you’re going to be moving around in tight spaces such as in public transportation. It won’t carry all your belongings but it’s ideal for the essentials you need.
When it’s Winter, you’ve got the option of concealing the area close to your body. You might want to take advantage of this by using a belt for carrying your tools. This will allow you easy access to the items you need. By using a standard work/utility belt you can keep all your items clearly organized. Although you’ll aim for the belt to remain hidden, you can always include some conventional tools to throw anyone off track if they do spot it under your clothes – they’ll simply think you are doing home DIY tasks or working within construction.
Your EDC Grayman Supplies
It is important to choose Every Day Carry items based on their purpose. Space will be precious within your grayman bag and you need to be organized and combine tools wherever possible.
Multi function items are ideal in this situation to save you space and give you less weight to carry around.
Multi Purpose Tools
There are some brilliant all round survival tools available that can combine items such as a pocket knife, USB charger for smaller devices, flashlights and many more all into one device.
When you’re buying multi purpose tools, be aware that if more tools are incorporated into one device, the smaller each tool is going to be.
For example – A folding knife is likely to be larger and sharper than a knife included in a 5 in 1 tool. Carrying individual tools and multi-purpose tools have pros and cons and the choice is down to your individual preference.
Getting a good folding knife is an excellent investment for your EDC gear. There are so many things that a knife can do – from self defense in extreme circumstances, to opening a can of food when you’re running low on supplies. Most folding knives are made from stainless steel so make sure you maintain them well and avoid rusting.
There are some good smaller keychain options with folding knives which can be useful if you’re keen to keep things under cover or simply don’t have much space to work with.
You might find yourself grateful if you invest in a good lock pick set to add to your EDC gear. Whether you’re accessing disused buildings to find shelter or even freeing yourself from a kidnap situation, a lock pick set can save your life.
Tactical pens have become popular as gift ideas in recent years but they have a serious function and will be a useful addition to any grayman bag.
A multi-function pen we recommend is this one made of aerospace grade aluminum. This pen has a cap made of the toughest steel which can break glass. Another great option is this tactical pen that contain flashlights and screwdrivers.
There may be times that you’re carrying your EDC bag after dark or in areas where there is minimal light. It can be incredibly dangerous when you can’t see where you’re going as you can trip over obstacles – either injuring yourself or alerting others of your presence. To avoid this, be sure to add a flashlight to your EDC gear – there are some great hands free options which have magnetic ends to enable you to hang them up easily.
A standard miniature version of a flashlight to attach to a keychain is also a great option as so many people have these on their car or house keys for helping them open their doors so you won’t risk standing out with this tool.
Medical and First Aid
Obviously you’ll want to pack your essential medical supplies in your grayman load out gear.
Think about any medication you need to have on your person and then work through the basic First Aid Kit items that could save your life when SHTF to make sure you’re well prepared in case you are ever in a medical emergency.
Food and Snacks
If you don’t have time to eat but are expending energy with lots of physical activity or standing you’ll want to ensure your calorie levels don’t dip. High calorie snacks and protein bars have a good shelf life and can live in your EDC bag ongoing.
We want to make dressing as a gray man as easy for you as possible. What to wear, what to carry, and what you’ll need are all laid out for you here in this article. Your task is to work on your appearance and your gear to ensure that you don’t stand out in public.
There are so many products on the market now that combine techwear, functionality and style. You don’t have to make it obvious that you’re a prepper or survivalist as so many people are wearing outdoor clothing and more rugged style outfits nowadays.
Keeping under the radar isn’t hard to do. People are busy and distracted in today’s world, and in an emergency situation there will probably be panic and confusion added in. As long as you dress appropriately and pack your EDC items in a discreet bag, you’ll float along in the crowd as a successful grayman.