Reviews

Best Headlamps For Hunting (Review & Buying Guide) in 2021

These are the best headlamps for hunting in any lighting and all other outdoor conditions.

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BY Heather Fishel / LAST UPDATED ON April 2, 2021

Every hunter needs to be prepared before heading out into the field. And that means you’ve got to pack the right gear — including a headlamp that’ll help you see more clearly in dim lighting or darkness. A headlamp might not seem like a necessity for hunting, but you never know what you’ll need once you spot the perfect prey. When the sun sets, you need to have a headlamp that can stand up to wear and tear while offering just the right kind of light to spot whatever you’re hunting.

 

And you can’t use just any headlamp—you need one that’s durable, effective, and able to survive the rigorous conditions that can come with hunting in any environment. If you’re still searching for the perfect headlamp, we’re here to help: you can browse our picks for the best headlamps for hunting below.

Best Overall
GearLight LED Headlamp
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Summary
Summary

A highly durable headlamp that’s tough enough to withstand water, weather, and frequent use.

Pros
Pros
  • Lasts for up to 45 hours
  • Lightweight even with batteries
  • Water-resistant and shockproof
Cons
Cons
  • Buckle is somewhat weak
Best Overall
GearLight LED Headlamp
Best Value
Vekkia Ultra Bright Cree LED Headlamp
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Summary
Summary

An affordable and versatile headlamp for hunting that offers multiple modes and adjustments.

Pros
Pros
  • Five light settings and modes
  • Adjustable beam angle
  • Long-lasting battery
Cons
Cons
  • Red light mode isn’t very bright
  • Construction isn’t high-quality
Best Value
Vekkia Ultra Bright Cree LED Headlamp
Honorable Mention
Streamlight ProTac HL Tactical LED Headlamp
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Summary
Summary

An affordable and versatile headlamp for hunting that offers multiple modes and adjustments.

Pros
Pros
  • Three lighting modes
  • Rubber strap for extra secure fit
  • Water- and impact-resistant
Cons
Cons
  • Changing modes can be tricky
Honorable Mention
Streamlight ProTac HL Tactical LED Headlamp
Headlamp For Hunting Close Up
Amazon

Why Trust Us


Our reviews are driven by a combination of hands-on testing, expert input, “wisdom of the crowd” assessments from actual buyers, and our own expertise. We always aim to offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.

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Benefits of Headlamps For Hunting

  • Improved visibility. One of the most apparent benefits of a headlamp is the increased visibility this little device offers. You can clearly see where you’re aiming, and you’ll have a better ability to see what’s around you. With different lighting colors, you may even be able to see your prey and into the darkness better.
  • Increased versatility. A headlamp isn’t just for brightly illuminating what’s in front of you—this handy accessory can be used in different ways, giving you more uses. You can use a headlamp to assess your surroundings, to light your way while you’re traveling to a new spot, or even to find accessories, ammo, and other items in the dark.
  • More flexibility. If you’ve ever found yourself frustrated that the sun is setting, a headlamp is a must-have. You’ll no longer be tied to daylight; instead, you’ll be able to hunt for longer and in less-than-ideal conditions. You can forget about outdoor lighting and visibility, which offers so much more flexibility in how and when you hunt.

Types of Headlamps For Hunting

White Light Headlamps

White light headlamps are among the most common you’ll find. These headlamps offer just one color light — white — and multiple brightness settings. White light headlamps are great for navigating dense, dark woods or moving around your camp with better, clearer visibility. These headlamps also offer fantastic versatility, as you can also use them for activities beyond hunting. While they’re great for seeing in the dark, these headlamps have one drawback: they aren’t ideal for spotting or stalking game since the brightness can frighten animals.

White and Red Light Headlamps

Another option is a white and red light headlamp. These dual-color headlamps allow you to switch between white light and red light, giving you increased versatility and different light for different needs. These headlamps are fantastic if you want the bright illumination of white light and need to be able to spot and stalk game; you can use the white light to see clearly and the red for true hunting. Red light also helps enhance your ability to see in the dark, giving you a better ability to see when there’s no light at all.

Multicolor Light Headlamps

Multicolor light headlamps offer even more than the options above. These headlamps are the most comprehensive — they offer white, red, and green or blue light. Hunters will get the most value out of multicolor headlamps, as you can use the white light for illumination, the red light for hunting game, and the green or blue light for spotting and scoping game like hogs or varmint. A multicolor headlamp offers the highest level of versatility and value, and they’re especially great for serious hunters.

Top Brands

Energizer

First founded in 1896, Energizer has a long history of providing battery power for all kinds of gadgets, toys, and devices. So, it’s no surprise that Energizer also makes long-lasting gadgets with their batteries, like the Energizer High-Powered LED Headlamp, a perfect pick for hunters and outdoorsmen.  

Streamlight

Since 1973, Streamlight has created outdoor products for all kinds of outdoor enthusiasts’ needs — and the company is composed of the very people who use its products. Streamlight offers high-quality hunting gear and accessories, too, including standouts like the Streamlight ProTac HL Tactical LED Headlamp and the Streamlight BuckMasters Trident Headlamp.

Headlamps For Hunting Pricing

  • Under $25: If you need a basic headlamp, there are plenty of options available for less than $25. These products typically offer limited features and only one light color, but they’re budget-friendly.
  • $25 to $50: You’ll find an array of good-quality headlamps for hunting in this price range. These lamps tend to offer adjustability and more lighting modes, giving you more capability. 
  • $50 and up: If you want the best of the best or the most advanced headlamps, you’ll want to spend $50 or more. These pricier headlamps offer the most features, light choices and settings, and even higher-quality materials.

Key Features

Multiple Light Colors

As discussed above, having multiple light colors in a single hunting headlamp offers more versatility and flexibility. It even adds to a headlamp’s value, as you’ll be able to use its illumination in more settings and for more purposes. With white light and colored light options, you’ll be better equipped to hunt at night, stalk and spot prey, and see where you’re headed. 

Long Beam Distance

The distance of a headlamp’s beam can make a huge difference when you’re trying to find or stalk game. It also matters when you’re walking or moving around in the dark. Your headlamp should be able to light the path ahead of you, enabling you to see what’s coming in the distance so you can avoid obstacles, dangers, or even predators. Look for headlamps that offer a beam distance of 250 feet or more. 

Water-Resistance

Water-resistance is another critical feature in any headlamp for hunting. It helps make a headlamp increasingly durable, and it’s essential for hunting because you never know when you might find yourself dealing with wet weather or moisture. You’ll want to choose a headlamp that offers good water resistance, enough to withstand rain as well as wet outdoor conditions.

Lengthy Battery Lifespan

A long-lasting battery is important regardless of how long you’re planning to hunt. You don’t want to find yourself replacing your headlamp’s batteries repeatedly — it’s costly and inconvenient. Instead, look for a rechargeable headlamp that can offer you many, many hours of use before needing replacement or recharging; a whole day is a good target, but some headlamps can offer even more.

Other Considerations

  • More Modes Can Be Beneficial. To make your headlamp more convenient and more capable, look for a product with more modes. Different light settings and strengths, the ability to adjust and angle the beam, and even additional functions like flashing or emergency light modes can help enhance a basic headlamp for hunting. 
  • Adjustable Beams Are Best. Don’t settle for a headlamp that offers just one kind of beam. Instead, opt for an adjustable beam, one that can be narrowed or widened, shortened or lengthened. This adjustability will allow you to control your headlamp’s light better, improving your ability to see in different settings. 
  • LED Light is Your Best Bet. While most headlamps now offer LED lights, some are still stuck in the past and use less efficient bulbs. You’ll get more bang for your buck if you choose a headlamp that uses LEDs, as these products are more efficient and last for far longer. An LED model can last decades as opposed to just a few years. 

Best Headlamps For Hunting Reviews & Recommendations 2021

Best Overall
GearLight LED Headlamp

This headlamp is compact, but it packs a serious punch when it comes to illumination. Whether you're rifling through your gear or need to clearly see where you're headed, the super-bright, premium LED light creates a brilliant beam. Powered by three AAA batteries, you'll get 45 hours of light on the low setting. You can adjust the beam's direction, and there are seven lighting modes to choose from, including a red beam that's handy for night vision. The headlamp is comfortable to wear, too, weighing just 1.8 ounces and attached to a washable, removable, and adjustable band. When it comes to durability, this light delivers; it's weather-resistant and shock-resistant, drop tested, and able to withstand water and other harsh outdoor conditions.


The only downside to this headlamp is that its buckle is somewhat weak, but that doesn't affect the headlamp's overall efficiency.

Best Value
Vekkia Ultra Bright Cree LED Headlamp

With two buttons and five different light settings, you'll get a white Cree XPE LED that shines at 160 lumens when on full brightness plus red LED light. You can pivot the beam's angle by 45 degrees, and you'll get a total light range of 262 feet. Whether you need to see what's near or far, this headlamp will have you covered with just the right amount of light. It's comfortable to wear, with a stretchy and soft band. The headlamp itself is also wonderfully durable for the outdoors, with an IPX6 waterproof rating and a long battery lifespan that lasts days, not hours.


However, this headlamp's red light mode isn't very bright, so keep that in mind. Also, customers have said that the construction of the headlamp itself isn't of the best quality.

Best Premium
Streamlight ProTac HL Tactical LED Headlamp

This headlamp is built tough enough for tactical situations and settings — and it offers durability that other headlamps can’t match. This hunting accessory goes above and beyond, offering 540 lumens of light and a beam that stretches 172 meters. There are three lighting modes to choose from, and the light itself can tilt 90 degrees. It’s powered by two 3-volt CR123A lithium batteries, which last for up to 10 years. Made from machined aircraft aluminum with an anodized finish and a sealed glass lens, this headlamp is also impact-tested and rated IPX4 water-resistant. It’ll perform under duress and in unpredictable conditions, and you’ll never have to worry about having the light you need. Another perk is the two strap choices: you can opt to use the rubber strap or the adjustable elastic strap.


The only downside to this headlamp is that switching between modes can be a bit tricky. 

Most Versatile
Elmchee Rechargeable LED Headlamp

If you’re searching for a headlamp for hunting that’ll have you covered in every setting and every scenario, you’re going to want to choose the Elmchee Rechargeable LED Headlamp. It looks simple at first glance, but this headlamp offers an impressive range of different lighting modes and colors. Constructed with six LED light bulbs, you’ll have eight modes to choose from, including high, low, strobe, and different colors. Unlike other headlamps, this product is also rechargeable. You won’t have to worry about having spare batteries on hand; you can recharge the built-in 1,500 mAh lithium-polymer battery and get powered up in no time. This headlamp for hunting is also long-lasting, with a lifespan of approximately 100,000 hours. 


It’s also IPX4 water-resistant, which means it can survive splashing water without worry. The product is also dust-proof and shock-proof, ensuring you can rely on it in any setting.

Most Durable
Energizer High-Powered LED Headlamp

Take your hunting light to new levels with the Energizer High-Powered LED Headlamp. It looks like any other headlamp, but thanks to Energizer’s innovations, it does more and offers more specialized light settings. The headlamp features a super bright LED beam of light covering 80 meters and puts out 260 lumens. It can easily light up an entire campsite — or less if needed. There are seven different modes, including red light, that allow you to customize the illumination. You can also change the intensity of the light thanks to Energizer’s Smart Dimming technology. With a long run time of up to 35 hours on three AAA batteries, you’ll be able to go days without worry. 


And, of course, this headlamp is tough enough for hunting. It’s constructed to withstand one-meter drops, is built with a shatterproof lens, and has a water-resistant body.

Honorable Mention
Alyattes Ultra Bright Cree LED Headlamp

Sometimes, all you need is a very bright white light — and if that’s the case, you’ll want the Alyattes Ultra Bright Cree LED Headlamp. It’s hard to beat the brightness level of this product, as it generates 12,000 lumens with five Cree LEDs. It offers a wide beam, which you can adjust and move 90 degrees. There are four lighting modes to choose from, including lower illumination and a thinner, more focused beam. The headlamp offers a long battery life and can survive outdoor challenges like waterproofing; it’ll handle rain as well as potential water leaks. And it’s comfortable to wear too, with a weight of just 12 ounces in total. 


The elastic headband is sweat-resistant to keep you cool (and odor-free) in hot weather. This headlamp is also backed by a lifetime warranty, a detail that ensures you can trust in its quality and its reliability.

Honorable Mention
EverBrite Headlamp

No matter what you’re doing while you’re hunting, the EverBrite Headlamp will have you covered. This versatile headlamp offers more than mere white light; it includes three different light colors and seven different lighting modes, giving you plenty of choices whether you’re walking, stalking game, or scoping out the scene. Featuring 300 lumens of light at high power, this headlamp offers a beam of up to 328 feet. You can choose white, red, or green light depending on your needs, and the Cree XPG LED bulbs gives you choices like high, medium, low, and strobe lighting. 


You can adjust the settings and modes as needed thanks to the 30-degree tilting light head on this headlamp. With a lightweight design and an adjustable, elastic headband, you’ll also be comfortable in any setting, even when wearing this headlamp for long periods.

Honorable Mention
Princeton Tec Remix LED Headlamp

If you don’t want to get caught with a dead or dying headlamp, you need to get your hands on the Princeton Tec Remix LED Headlamp. Designed specifically for hunters, this headlamp is bright, versatile, and exceptionally long-lasting. With up to 150 hours of burn time and three AAA batteries for power, you can go days with this headlamp at full power. And when it’s turned on, this headlamp can perform in any hunting environment. With 300 lumens of bright white light, a single Maxbright LED bulb, and three additional ultra-bright LED bulbs, you’ll easily be able to aim light wherever it’s needed. 


The large push-button switch gives you quick and easy control over the lamp’s light, and you can use it whether you’re long-distance spotting or examining an area at close range. The beam can even be changed from wide to focused and narrow.

Honorable Mention
Nitecore LED Rechargeable Headlamp

The Nitecore LED Rechargeable Headlamp is a great option if you want a headlamp for hunting and other uses. It’ll perform perfectly in many conditions, and it particularly excels in outdoor settings; it’s suitable for hunting, running, camping, and even performing auto repairs in your garage. This high-performance, high illumination headlamp is constructed with a Cree XP-G3 S3 LED light, which emits 550 lumens of light over a maximum distance of 136 yards. It offers multiple lighting modes, including specialty options like Turbo mode, a location beacon, and a red auxiliary LED light that protects night vision. 


You can choose close-up illumination or flood illumination, switching and adapting as needed. Lightweight with a long-running battery, you can easily run, walk, and perform all kinds of tasks while wearing this headlamp. You’ll barely notice it’s on your head while you work.

Honorable Mention
Streamlight BuckMasters Trident Headlamp

Green light is beneficial for hunters who are scoping and stalking at night — and the Streamlight BuckMasters Trident Headlamp offers precisely the kind of light you need. Designed specifically for hunters’ needs, this headlamp provides white light plus green light. Equipped with an array of LEDs, you’ll have bright white light for illuminating objects in the distance or lighting your way, as well as green light for catching game and maintaining your natural night vision. The green light is just as intense as the white light, and it even offers longer run time with better battery life. You can tilt the head of the light for just the right angle, too. 


This headlamp is also highly durable, with shockproof and IPX4 water-resistant construction. From the tough ABS thermoplastic exterior to the unbreakable polycarbonate lens, you can trust this headlamp to survive anything. 

Tips

  • The fit of a headlamp can be just as important as its illumination. You want to make sure a headlamp is snug enough to stay in place yet lightweight and comfortable, so you barely feel it while you’re hunting.
  • Tactical headlamps can be an excellent choice for hunters, as these more specialized headlamps tend to be extremely durable and ideal for the outdoors.
  • Most headlamps run on AA or AAA batteries, so you’ll want to examine battery life closely and how many batteries are needed before buying. You don’t want to wind up spending a lot as you have to purchase and replace the batteries. 

FAQs

Q: What is the best headlamp for hunting?

We think that the GearLight LED Headlamp is one of the best headlamps for hunting. It is a product that offers excellent durability for all kinds of outdoor conditions and environments. 

Q: How many lumens do you need for hunting?

More lumens equals increased brightness, so a higher number of lumens means your headlamp will be extra bright. However, the right amount depends on what, exactly, you’re looking for. Typically, a good headlamp features between 100 and 300 lumens.

Q: What is the best brightest LED headlamp?

The Alyattes Ultra Bright Cree LED Headlamp is one of the brightest available. It offers a whopping 12,000 lumens from its Cree LED lights, which is far more than your average headlamp.

Q: What is the green light on a headlamp for?

Green light is used to spot and stalk game. It’s particularly useful if you’re hunting hogs.

Final Thoughts

Our top product pick, the GearLight LED Headlamp, offers the right balance of outdoor durability and good visibility in darkness. Another great option is the Vekkia Ultra Bright Cree LED Headlamp, an affordably priced headlamp with substantial outdoor benefits.