Mesh vs. Solid Safety Vests – What’s the Difference?


With so many options for safety vests, knowing the difference between mesh vs. solid safety vests is an important starting point. Understanding what sets them apart affects your comfort and effectiveness on the job. Both styles ensure visibility and safety, but they cater to different working conditions and personal preferences.

Mesh Safety Vests: Breathability Wins

Firstly, mesh safety vests stand out due to their superior breathability. Crafted with open weave fabric, these vests allow air to circulate freely. This trait makes them an ideal choice for working in hot or humid conditions. The lightweight nature of mesh vests means less bulk and more comfort. Our lightweight hi-vis mesh safety vests come in colors like orange and yellow/lime. Silver reflective tape makes most styles ANSI Type O Class 1, Type P Class 2, or Type R Class 2 or 3 rated for the job site.

However, the same features that provide excellent breathability might also be a drawback. Mesh vests offer less protection against the wind and cold. They also tend to be less durable than their solid counterparts, as the mesh fabric can snag and tear more easily when caught on sharp objects. Also, this tends to make mesh safety vests lower-priced than solid safety vests. Select from dozens of options including breakaway, black bottom, FR, two-tone, and surveyor.

Our Best-Selling Mesh Safety Vests:

  1. Radians SV2Z
  2. ERB by Delta Plus S363P
  3. Full Source US2LM19
  4. Kishigo 1195
  5. Kishigo 1515

Solid Safety Vests: Protection and Durability

Furthermore, solid safety vests, made from denser materials, excel in providing a barrier against the elements. If you’re working in cooler climates or need a bit of additional warmth, a solid vest acts as a windbreaker and retains more body heat than a mesh vest. Also, this style offers greater durability due to its denser fabric, which resists wear and tear better over time. These high visibility ANSI-rated vests come in styles for men and women. Select from surveyor, X-Back, FR, breakaway, and incident command solid safety vests.

Although, there is a downside to the solid material used in these vests. They often feel heavier and less comfortable in warm weather. The lack of airflow can lead to overheating and discomfort, particularly under the sun or during physically demanding tasks. In addition, solid safety vests often cost more than mesh safety vests. Find options from popular brands like Pyramex, Radians, and ERB by Delta Plus.

Our Best-Selling Solid Safety Vests:

  1. Full Source US2LN16
  2. Pyramex RVHL2910
  3. Full Source US2ON16
  4. Radians SV2ZGS
  5. Full Source PSV-FIRE

Choosing the Right Vest for Your Environment

Therefore, the choice between mesh and solid safety vests often comes down to your specific work environment and personal comfort preferences. If you prioritize airflow and are working outdoors in a hot climate, a mesh vest is undoubtedly the way to go. It keeps you cooler and more comfortable, allowing you to focus on the task at hand without the distraction of excessive heat. Also, mesh vests include one size fits most options that work for a large range of body types. This makes them ideal for visitors, parking lot attendants, and events.

On the other hand, if you find yourself braving cooler temperatures or need something that can withstand a bit of rough handling, a solid safety vest is likely the better option. It provides additional warmth and longevity, which could be crucial depending on your work conditions. As a result, adding both styles of vests to your work wardrobe is a smart idea. You will still prepared for changing weather conditions, as well as meet ANSI safety standards.

Add your Custom Logo

Additionally, adding your custom logo to your safety vest not only enhances brand visibility but also fosters a sense of team unity and professionalism. This customization allows companies to display their logos, making employees easily identifiable while promoting the company’s image on job sites or in public areas. The process involves selecting a vest and deciding on the placement and size of the logo for optimal visibility. Modern printing techniques, such as screen printing and vinyl heat transfer, ensure that the logo remains vibrant and durable; even under the strenuous conditions typical of many work environments. Plus, our screen print logos start at 99 cents per print.


In conclusion, both mesh and solid safety vests offer essential visibility and safety features required by various industries, from construction to road work. When selecting a vest, consider the typical weather conditions and the nature of your work. Remember, the right safety vest not only ensures compliance with ANSI safety regulations but also enhances your overall work experience by keeping you comfortable and protected.