Uniform Buyer's Guide
At TacticalGear.com, you'll find uniforms manufactured to the same Mil-Spec standards as the ones found on the battlefield. Our Airman Battle Uniforms (ABUs), Army Combat Uniforms (ACUs) and Battle Dress Uniforms (BDUs) are combat-tested and made by the same brands that supply the U.S. Military. Not only does each uniform type cater to a different role, but also each brand puts its own twist on these classic styles. We've mapped out the mission-ready features you can expect from each garment and brand.
In 2006, Propper established the sub-brand Genuine Gear with the ultimate mission of creating affordable gear for the operator on a budget. Since its inception, the brand has been drawing on Propper uniform expertise to craft Battle Dress Uniforms (BDUs.) Manufactured in the same factory as Propper apparel, all the brand's BDUs are built with similar standards and characteristics as other higher priced brands.
In fact, Genuine Gear BDUs are made with the exact same shade, quality and construction as Propper BDUs. The main difference is that Genuine Gear uses a more affordable fabric. The brand offers poly / cotton pants, coats and shirts in over 10 different colors, including the hottest camo patterns on the market.
When it comes to military uniforms, Propper holds a massive legacy. The brand has been manufacturing the legendary BDU since the U.S. Military began wearing them in the 1980s. In 2005, when the U.S. Army adopted the updated Army Combat Uniform (ACU), Propper began crafting high-quality ACUs. Then in 2006, when the U.S. Air Force made the Airmen Battle Uniform (ABU) the official uniform of Airmen, Propper began manufacturing those as well.
Propper produces the ABU and ACU directly for the military through its company-owned facility in Puerto Rico. Its commercially available ABU and ACUs are manufactured with the exact same standards as its American-made garments. Everything from the color to the stitching is watched closely to ensure the uniforms consistently meet the same military specifications.
Tru-Spec by Atlanco was established in the 1950s as a small military surplus company. By the 1990s, the brand began manufacturing Battle Dress Uniforms (BDUs). From there, it was a natural progression to produce the newly adopted Army Combat Uniform (ACU) in 2005.
Tru-Spec amps up these classic uniforms with a comfortable, innovative fit. Slip on a pair of Tru-Spec ACU or BDU pants, and you'll notice they adapt to a wide range of motion. Made from a synthetic fabric blend, all of its uniforms are tear-resistant for maximum durability. The brand's uniforms aren't exclusively for military applications. Tru-Spec also has a line of police Gen-1 and Gen-2 BDU pants constructed with the same intelligent design of BDU trousers but with a law enforcement look.
Airman Battle Uniform (ABU)
The ABU became the official uniform of the U.S. Air Force in 2011, but it had been around for several years prior. Unveiled in 2003, the ABU originally boasted a Vietnam-era Tiger Stripe camouflage pattern. After extensive wear-testing, the garment switched to a digital Tiger Stripe camouflage and updated with functionalities reminiscent of the previous Battle Dress Uniform (BDU).
Modern ABUs still sport the sleek, professional digital Tiger Stripe pattern and a traditional collar style. The pocket placement reflects BDU style with eight pants pockets and four button-closure coat pockets. In addition, the fabric blend is made of a durable ripstop weave.
Battle Dress Uniform (BDU):
The BDU made its debut on the battlefield back in 1981. Although BDUs have since been discontinued as the official uniform of the U.S. Army, many still swear by their legendary design. Law enforcement, security and shooting enthusiasts choose to outfit themselves in BDU pants and coats because of the optimized storage options and extreme durability the garments offer.
BDU coats feature a traditional collar style with four straight button-flap pockets. The pants offer even more storage with a either a six- or eight-pocket design. Need a warmer weather option? BDUs also come in a short and longsleeve shirt styles as well as shorts. Further increasing this apparel's ability to adapt to a wide range of roles and functions, BDUs come in over ten different colors and patterns as well as multiple fabric blends.