CAMPING & HIKING

Best Keychain Flashlight: Pocket Sized Illumination For Your Needs

Best Keychain Flashlight
Mark Foster
Written by Mark Foster

We’ve all been in that situation before: trapped out in the woods or stuck in our cars with no way of seeing what’s around us. Or when there’s a blackout in our home and we can’t remember where we put that stupid flashlight. It’s a problem not many of us think we’ll face until we’re stuck in that horrible situation, and don’t know how to get out of it. But instead of panicking, you could have the best keychain flashlight as your side to help you through those troubling times.

Heavy duty flashlights will definitely get you out of a situation, but they can be unwieldy and heavy. So you toss them into a drawer until you’re ready to use them. But if you can’t see your way around to find it, then they’re no use. However, with a keychain flashlight, you can keep them on your keys so they’re always with you, making it easy for you to find your way around. You need to have a durable, quality keychain flashlight with you to ensure you’re getting the most out of your purchase. We’re going to show you how to go about finding one that will last you a good long while.

In this article, we’ll introduce you to the most important features you should be looking for when buying the right keychain flashlight, as well as a list of reviewed products so that you know what’s out there. So with that said, it’s time to take you on the right path to finding a keychain flashlight that’s perfect for you.

Product Name LumensRuntime Beam DistancePrice
GLAREE Keychain Flashlight.1 (moonlight mode), 15 (low), 150 (high and strobe)120 hours (moonlight mode), 6.5 hours (low), 30 minutes (high), 60 minutes (strobe)147 feetCheck price on Amazon
KeySmart Nano Torch 25N/AN/ACheck price on Amazon
Streamlight Nano Light108 hoursN/ACheck price on Amazon
LUMINTOP Flashlight 5 (low), 32 (mid), 110 (high)36 hours (low), 4 hours (mid), 30 minutes (high)154 feetCheck price on Amazon
Helius Sigma VI Flashlight20 (low), 130 (high)4.5 hours (low), 30 minutes (high)160 feetCheck price on Amazon
ThruNight Flashlight0.04 (firefly mode), 12 (low), 120 (high and strobe modes)115 hours (firefly mode), 6.3 hours (low), 30 minutes (high), 60 minutes (strobe)164 feetCheck price on Amazon
Streamlight Flashlight 10 (white), 2.6 (green)96 hoursN/ACheck price on Amazon
Olight Keychain Light 9060 minutes144 feetCheck price on Amazon

Things to Consider Before Purchasing

Before we can get started on showing you what’s out there in the market, we’re going to introduce you to some very important features. These are what can make or break your wallet. Despite keychain flashlights not being very expensive, you don’t want to waste your money buying flashlight after flashlight because they keep breaking or they end up being not what you’re looking for.

Instead, you should consider these important elements before purchasing so that you’re aware of exactly what you’re getting in the product you’re purchasing. Now that we’ve gone over the importance of why you should keep these in mind, it’s time to take a look at what they are.

Lumens

Lumens are a unit of measurement as to how much light is being produced. A simpler way of putting it is how bright your light is. Keychain flashlights aren’t known for providing a lot of lumens, given their size, but they can be strong enough to help you get around in a blackout situation.

A flashlight with 20 Lumens is bright enough to read a book, and anything brighter than that is guaranteed to be useful in getting around your campsite after dark, or working on the underside of your car in a garage.

key flashlight

Keep in mind, however, that the brighter a flashlight is, the more they will drain the battery, so it would be a good idea to look for a flashlight with mid-range brightness or has brightness options for you to switch between.

Beam Distance

This is somewhat related to the brightness of your flashlight, as the brighter the light is, the farther the beam distance. However, this also relies on the kind of beam being used, as well as if there are any reflectors in the flashlight itself.

Depending on your activity, you may need a flashlight that has a decent beam distance. Longer beams are great for getting around in the outdoors and campsites, which can save you from tripping on tree roots and rocks in your path. Shorter beams are good for use in inside your home or car.

Durability

When it comes to keychain flashlights, they’re quite small which makes them a bit more vulnerable to breaking. They’re easier to drop and lose, but if you’re attached to a particular product, you don’t want to just give up on it. That’s why you may want to consider a flashlight that’s designed to deal with the elements, especially if you plan on taking it outdoors with you.

durable waterproof key flashlights

Look for flashlights that have impact-resistance as well as scratch-resistant finishes. These will save your flashlight from breaking on the first drop, and will also preserve its great look. Another consideration is water-resistance. You don’t want a little rain to make your flashlight stop working. Some of the products in this list can even withstand being submerged in water and continue working.

Runtime

This is how many hours your flashlight can run for before the batteries are drained completely. This goes hand in hand with the Lumens of your flashlight, as brighter settings will use more power. Keep in mind that Lumens may decrease over time with constant use of a flashlight, so the runtime will decrease as well.

With that said, you should look for a flashlight with multiple settings so that the runtimes vary depending on your needs. You may need ultra-bright light for just a few minutes, or you may need a lower setting for a longer trip. Having both options provides you with more value for your dollar, as you’re allowed to use as much or as little of the battery as you need.

Batteries

Without batteries, you have no power, but it’s important to consider the type of batteries your flashlight requires. A majority of keychain flashlights uses a single AAA battery, while other use several button/coin batteries. The latter is a little more expensive, but tend to produce a bit more light and have longer runtimes than the former.

key flashlight battery

One alternative is the rechargeable battery. This allows you to recharge the battery once it’s run out and use it over and over again instead of throwing it away. If you’re looking to be more green in your life, then this is an option you may definitely want to consider.

Best Products on Today’s Market

Now that we’ve shown you what it takes to find a keychain flashlight that’s perfect for your needs, we’re going to introduce you to some of the top rated products in the market. Customers come back time and time again to these products because of the quality features that they possess.

If you want to make sure that you’re getting value for every dollar, then this list will help you to sort out the real quality products from the knockoffs. So let’s get started with these product review.

GLAREE E03 Keychain Flashlight GLAREE E03 Keychain Flashlight

Price: Approx. $15

Weight: 0.42 ounces

Dimensions: 2.75 x 0.55 inches

Lumens: 0.1 (moonlight mode), 15 (low), 150 (high and strobe)

Batteries: 1 AAA

Runtime: 120 hours (moonlight mode), 6.5 hours (low), 30 minutes (high), 60 minutes (strobe)

Specific features: Two-way clip, O-ring, anti-abrasive finish, waterproof: IPX-8 up to 2 meters, twist switch, CREE G2 LED.

Best use: Camping, emergencies.

Description: The GLAREE E03 Keychain Flashlight is a sturdy product that will never fail you. It’s built to be durable enough to withstand being dropped into water, and the anti-abrasive finish means no scratches. No matter how hard you drop or bump it, it will look as great as the day you bought it.

On 1 AAA battery, this flashlight does run for quite a good while before needing to replace the battery. It even comes with a strobe mode, which is good for emergencies if you need someone to find you quickly enough. The battery doesn’t add much to the overall weight of the flashlight either, so you can keep this on your person or in the pocket of a backpack to use when you really need it.

This is also the brightest flashlight in this product review list, boasting 150 Lumens. Keep in mind, however, that this is the highest mode and can only be used for about 30 minutes, but that’s enough light to get you out of a dangerous situation quickly and effectively.

PROS:

  • Easy to use
  • Easy to carry
  • Very bright

CONS:

  • Twist switch controls modes, which can be fiddly

Related: Getting a campfire started can be a hassle, but you won’t have to worry anymore with the Esbit Smokeless Solid Fuel Tablets on your side. They light quickly, producing 1300 degrees of heat and flame, and burn for about 13 minutes each. That’s enough time for you to gather your kindling and even dry out any damp wood you have.

Check the price on Amazon

KeySmart Nano Torch KeySmart Nano Torch

Price: Approx. $20

Weight: 0.48 ounces

Dimensions: 1.8 x 0.3 inches

Lumens: 25

Batteries: 4 LR521 179 button cells

Runtime: N/A

Specific features: Stainless steel, twist switch.

Best use: Emergencies, use in your car, camping, hiking.

Description: If you’re looking for something that’s small and doesn’t look like a flashlight, then the KeySmart Nano Torch is the right one for you. In fact, it’s so small that you may not even remember that it’s there. Easily the smallest flashlight on this list, it packs an impressive 25 Lumens, which is nothing to laugh at. It’s easy to slip onto your keyring and go on your way. Alternatively, you can add some paracord to its loop and keep it around your neck, and no one would be the wiser.

Its sleek design is very attractive, the the twist switch is located at the top of the light, not the head. That makes it easy for you to turn it on and off, even with just one hand. That feature is important to keep in mind if you need your hands to be free while you move about your campsite or you’re taking a look at your car.

PROS:

  • Extremely bright
  • Very small
  • Lightweight
  • Unobtrusive on your keychain

CONS:

  • A little more pricey than other brands
  • Light dims after a few seconds

Related: Having a multitool can definitely make the difference, especially if you’re in a desperate situation. The Leatherman PS Multitool comes with several of the most common tools, including scissors, Phillips and flathead screwdrivers, and a wire cutter, just to name a few. And with the brand name of Leatherman, this multitool was designed to be durable, so it will last you a very long time.

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Streamlight 73001 Nano Light Streamlight 73001 Nano Light

Price: Approx. $6

Weight: 0.36 ounces

Dimensions: 1.47 x 0.5 inches

Lumens: 10

Batteries: 4 LR 41 Alkaline Buttons

Runtime: 8 hours

Specific features: Machined aircraft-grade aluminum, anodized finish, twist switch, snap hook.

Best use: Sporting goods, camping, emergencies.

Description: The Streamlight 73001 Nano Light is one of the smallest keyring flashlight you’ll find, but it doesn’t shy away from the competition. With 8 hours of runtime, you’ll have no problems putting this flashlight to good use.

It does use 4 button batteries, which aren’t very cheap, so that’s something to keep in mind if you’re considering adding this flashlight to your gear pack. However, it’s cheap enough that you can buy several of these to serve as backups if you ever find yourself in an emergency.

It’s small enough to fit into any pocket without weighing you down. That means you can pack more gear and have everything you need, instead of having to pick and choose what to leave behind. This flashlight isn’t only good to take on a camping trip; keep one in your car when you need to look in your glove compartment, or your car breaks down in the middle of the night and you need to take a look under the hood.

PROS:

  • Lightweight
  • Very affordable
  • Sturdy
  • Great output for the price

CONS:

  • Difficult to change the batteries
  • Can be difficult to turn on with gloves

Related: Need a simple knife to carry with you to and from your campsite? The Spyderco Bug Knife is small enough to fit in your pocket, and sharp enough to deal with anything in your path. It looks great and feels great in your hand, and the plain edge will help you to slice through anything.

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LUMINTOP Mini Worm Keychain Flashlight LUMINTOP Mini Worm Keychain Flashlight

Price: Approx. $15

Weight: 0.42 ounces

Dimensions: 2.64 x 0.55 inches

Lumens: 5 (low), 32 (mid), 110 (high)

Batteries: 1 AAA

Runtime: 36 hours (low), 4 hours (mid), 30 minutes (high)

Specific features: Twist switch, impact-resistant at 1.5 meters, waterproof: IPX-8 up to 2 meters, CREE XP-G2 (R5) LED, front O-ring glows in the dark.

Best use: Emergencies, low-light situations

Description: The stylish LUMINTOP Mini Worm Keychain Flashlight will spoil you in a way that you’ll never want to look at another keychain flashlight the same way every again. It comes in seven bright colors, feel great in the hand, and is very easy to use. Twist the light itself to switch between three different modes and then turning it off.

It has a clip chain that you can attach to your keyring or the zipper of your backpack. Alternatively, you can use the pocket clip to keep it on your pants or your shirt. Either way, you’re guaranteed to have your light on you at all times.

And when you’re tired of carrying it, you can stand the flashlight up on its end like a candle. That’s a great option to have when you need to move stuff around and your hands aren’t free, but you still need to see.

PROS:

  • Sturdy
  • Bright
  • Affordable

CONS:

  • Twist switch can get loose, causing the flashlight to fall apart

Related: When you need to protect your phone, the Spigen Rugged Armor ZTE Axon 7 Case is there to get the job done. It has Air Cushion technology on all four corners to cushion your phone if you accidentally drop it. The flexible TPU layer will also keep any fingerprint smudges off your screen, so there’s no need to constantly wipe your phone.

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Helius Sigma VI Keychain Flashlight Helius Sigma VI Keychain Flashlight

Price: Approx. $20

Weight: 1.1 ounces

Dimensions: 1.69 x 0.5 inches

Lumens: 20 (low), 130 (high)

Batteries: 1 10150 rechargeable lithium ion

Runtime: 4.5 hours (low), 30 minutes (high)

Specific features: Rechargeable, overcharge protection, gold-plated contact points, charges in 1 hour, CREE XP-G2 LED, impact resistance up to 1.5 meters, waterproof: IPX8 up to 2 meters, micro-USB cable, waterproof O-rings.

Best use: Camping, emergencies.

Description: The Helius Sigma VI Keychain Flashlight may be a little more expensive than the other flashlights in this list, but it’s definitely quite powerful. Putting out a whopping 130 lumens on its brightest setting, you’ll have no problems seeing what’s around you. The beam also extends quite far up to 160 feet, so no stumbling around and tripping on things other flashlights might miss.

Unlike the other flashlights on this list, however, this one is fully rechargeable. That means no more throwing away batteries and having to buy new ones. Just plug in the USB cable, and your flashlight will be ready to use again in an hour.

Forget about this flashlight breaking either: it’s impact-resistant and can be submerged in water up to 2 meters, and still continue to work. Durability was definitely built into this tiny flashlight, so it’s definitely one to consider worth adding to your list.

PROS:

  • Strong beam
  • Easy to pack and carry
  • Light

CONS:

  • Runtime could be longer for the price

Related: A good pair of kitchen scissors can be difficult to find, but you won’t have any problems with the TEESROOM Heavy Duty Kitchen Shears. The rust-resistant stainless steel blades will cut through almost anything, and there’s an included bottle opener in the handles. The ergonomic handles will feel great in your hands too, not matter what you’re using them on.

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ThruNite Cree Xp-G2 R5 LED Flashlight ThruNite Cree Xp-G2 R5 LED Flashlight 

Price: Approx. $15

Weight: 0.4 ounces

Dimensions: 2.7 x 0.5 inches

Lumens: 0.04 (firefly mode), 12 (low), 120 (high and strobe modes)

Batteries: 1 AAA

Runtime: 115 hours (firefly mode), 6.3 hours (low), 30 minutes (high), 60 minutes (strobe)

Specific features: Twist switch, anodized, anti-scratch finish, aircraft-grade aluminium, waterproof: IPX8, impact resistance up to 1.2 meters,

Best use: Emergencies, camping, use in car.

Description: The ThruNite Cree Xp-G2 R5 LED Flashlight has more than just an on and off mode. It has four other modes to choose from to make it easy for you to select just how much light you need. Not only does this customize your flashlight, but it also helps you to save on the life of the battery instead of draining it dry.

The water-resistance rating means that it can be completely submerged up to 2 meters without the flashlight being affected. So you could even take this boating with you without any worries. The anodized exterior means that this flashlight won’t get scratched either, so it can continue to look as new as the day you bought it.

The ThruNite is also extremely bright for the single battery that it uses. However, you only get 30 minutes of light on its highest setting, so you may want to stick to lower settings to conserve power.

PROS:

  • Small
  • Affordable
  • Powerful
  • Handy clip

CONS:

  • High mode has short runtime
  • Chain could be more secure

Related: Keeping your camping knife sharp on the go doesn’t have to be impossible, not with the Super Ceramic Water Stone on your side. It’s small enough to fit in any pocket of your backpack, and is the perfect tool for maintaining the sharp edge of any knife. Simply lubricate with water, and start sharpening.

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Streamlight 72101 KeyMate LED Flashlight Streamlight 72101 KeyMate LED Flashlight

Price: Approx. $13

Weight: 0.9 ounces

Dimensions: 2.36 x 0.57 inches

Lumens: 10 (white), 2.6 (green)

Batteries: Four LR 44 Alkaline coin

Runtime: 96 hours

Specific features: Unbreakable polycarbonate lens, spring pocket clip, swivel snap hook, lanyard, O-ring seal for water resistance.

Best use: Camping, sporting goods, emergencies, in your car.

Description: The Streamlight 72101 KeyMate LED Flashlight packs a lot of power into a tiny flashlight that can fit in your pocket along with your keys. The battery life is almost 100 hours, which is to be expected given the number of batteries it uses. Despite that, however, this flashlight won’t weigh you down, so you can stay on the move.

There is a green LED option in every flashlight, which is perfect for those who are trying to conserve their night vision. The lumens of the green LED is only 2.6 Lumens, so it shouldn’t be used as a primary source of light.

Lastly, there are two different ways you can carry this: on your keys using the spring clip, or around your neck with the attached lanyard. These options ensure that your flashlight is always on hand, no matter your situation or where you’re going.

PROS:

  • Bright
  • Affordable
  • Small
  • Professional look

CONS:

  • Beam doesn’t go very far
  • Too many batteries

Related: Sometimes you just need a good pair of tweezers, and Uncle Bill’s Sliver Gripper Keychain Tweezers is there to help you out. These sturdy tweezers are good for getting out splinters or for helping you fix your gear. It is made of durable stainless steel and comes in a convenient holder that makes it easy to keep on a keyring.

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Olight Keychain Light Olight Keychain Light

Price: Approx. $10

Weight: 0.68 ounces

Dimensions: 2.38 x 0.49 inches

Lumens: 90

Batteries: 1 AAA

Runtime: 60 minutes

Specific features: Impact resistant at 1.5 meters, waterproof: IPX8, anti-scratch, PMMA TIR lens, Philips Luxeon TX LED, head twist to turn on and off, optional charger.

Best use: Camping, emergency situations.

Description: If you’re looking for a small keychain flashlight that provides a lot of power for not a lot of money, then the Olight Keychain Light could be exactly what you’re looking for. This small flashlight is very compact and comes with a lot of features you wouldn’t consider from a tiny package.

It’s impact resistant up to 1.5 meters, so you don’t have to worry about this flashlight breaking if you accidentally drop it. It’s also waterproof and can be completely submerged without any risk of damage to this flashlight. These features make this device quite sturdy, which means you’re definitely getting your money’s worth.

With the number of colors it’s available in, and how affordable it is, it would be a good idea to get more than one for each of your family members as backup in an emergency. The runtime of this flashlight is only 60 minutes, so having spares would really help when you’re stuck in the dark.

PROS:

  • Affordable
  • Very bright

CONS:

  • Runtime is short

Related: Have a lot of keys but tired of fumbling with them when you need to get inside? The FreeKey System makes it incredibly easy for you. The large ring comes with three smaller rings so that you can group your keys into different categories, such as home, work, and keys for your car. That way, you can easily find what you’re looking for.

Check the price on Amazon

Wrap Up

You’ve arrived at the end of the article. With everything that’s been said, we’re confident that you’re on a better track to finding a keychain flashlight that’s suitable for your needs. It may take some time to find the right one, given all the information we’ve provided, but doing your research is better than going in blind and finding the wrong one.

Is there a particular keychain flashlight you’ve used that you want to share with us? Have a comment on any of these products we’ve listed? We’d love to hear from you, so please let us know what you think in the comments section below.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mark Foster

Mark Foster

Mark Foster loves to push his limits when it comes to survival in the wilderness. He might go for a 30-days adventure without any food or equipment except for a survival kit and a knife. We should mention that his survival kit has 122 items in it, so he know what he is doing. Mark is working on his book to share with the world all his experience gained during those brave adventures.