Mage Armor 5e: Mechanics and Guide to Using the Spell

Casting Time

1 action








Sorcerer, Wizard




8 hours




Verbal, Somatic, Material

Spell Description:

You touch a willing creature who isn’t wearing armor, and a protective magical force surrounds it until the spell ends. The target’s base AC becomes 13 + its Dexterity modifier. The spell ends if the target dons armor or if you dismiss the spell as an action

1st level, Abjuration, Buff, Utility, Defence

Level: Sorcerer (1), Wizard (1), Warlock (2, Eldritch Invocations), Eldritch Knight (3), Arcane Trickster (8) Bard (10, Magical Secrets)

Materials Required: A piece of cured leather

Number of Targets: 1

Die Type: N/A

Number of Dice: N/A

Damage Type: N/A

Save: N/A

Damage On Successful Save: N/A

Statuses Inflicted: Targets base AC becomes 13 + DEX Modifier

Status Duration: 8 hours

Affected By Cover: No

Advantage: None

Disadvantage: None

Who Can Cast Mage Armor?

Mage Armor is a staple part of the Wizard and Sorcerer toolkits. It is also a vital part of the Warlock kit, especially for those who choose the Pact of the Blade.

They get access to Mage Armor through the Eldritch Invocation feature at level 2 and can cast it at will and without using a spell slot. 

What Is Mage Armor?

Mage Armor is, as the name implies, the caster’s replacement for armor.

Those casters who cannot wear armor because it would impede their casting can use Mage Armor which acts, functionally, just like a chain shirt giving them an Armour Class of 13 + their Dexterity modifier!

The spell doesn’t require concentration and lasts for 8 hours, but it will end early if the target dons armor or the caster dispels it.

When and Where Should I Cast Mage Armor?

Any level 1 casters who can cast Mage Armour should consider doing so. The spell lasts 8 hours, meaning you can cast it once and have it active for several fights.

Doing so at the beginning of the first combat encounter gives you the best value for your spell slot.

Mage Armor can also be cast on other characters who have naturally low armor classes like Rogues.

Why Should I Take Mage Armor?

Mage Armour is an excellent tool for Abjuration mages who can use it to protect both themselves and their lower-defense allies.

It’s most potent at low levels and starts to fall off at higher levels, so taking it late is ill-advised.

Common Questions About Mage Armor