If there is one trend that drives the gun business, it’s people who want to know what gun is “best” for thing xyz. The truth is that if you’re buying from a reputable manufacturer, most guns are pretty equal. But, if you’re looking for a jumping-off point and have 90 seconds to spare, here’s my list of the five best guns for concealed carry.
5. Any midsize 9mm polymer gun: Glock 19, HK VP9, Sig P320, Beretta APX, Walther PPQ We live in a golden age of 9mm handguns. All the major brands make a mid-sized handgun suitable for concealed carry with the right holster. It doesn’t matter which one, because they’re all designed to do the same thing: hold 15-17 rounds of 9mm, have a 5ish pound trigger pull, shoot decent groups at 25 meters, and be reliable. You could toss all the guns listed in a bag and tell me I had to carry one for the rest of my life and I wouldn’t care what I pulled out, because they’re all largely the same.
4. Shield EZ 380 The reason the Shield EZ 380 makes the list of the five best guns for concealed carry is because it’s designed to be…well, it’s designed to be easy to use. The slide is intentionally engineered to be easy to move to the rear, and because it’s chambered in 380 ACP it’s also pleasant to shoot. It’s basically the perfect gun for someone who might lack the hand strength to rack a slide and the dedication to get good at shooting a revolver.
3. Sig P365/XL The Sig entrants on this list are great guns. The P365 was the first gun to challenge the Glock 43 and M&P Shield’s domination of the “compact carry gun” market, and it did it by making a 10 round gun that was the same size as guns that held 7 or 8 rounds. Everyone loves more capacity, and the Sig P365 delivered. I consider the XL part of the P365 lineup, and I actually prefer it to the regular gun, because I like guns with longer slides. Longer slide = more sight radius = easier to shoot well. The P365 belongs on a list of the five best guns for concealed carry.
2. Ruger LCR The lone revolver on our list, the Ruger LCR earned its place here by being the best straight-from-the-factory small frame revolver on the market. The trigger on any LCR is light years better than the triggers on the small guns from the competition, and somehow Ruger managed to make the LCR almost as hard to kill as the legendarily tough SP101. Sure, revolvers give up a lot to semi-autos in terms of capacity and shootability, but for a deep concealment gun or a gun for a specific purpose, it’s hard to beat a wheelgun, and the LCR is the best.
1. Glock 43x/48 Rounding out the top of our list of the five best guns for concealed carry you have, what is the king of the crop: the Glock 43x and Glock 48. When Sig dropped the P365, Glock was quick to fire back with the 43x and 48. Thanks to the huge aftermarket for Glock pistols, these make the #1 spot on our list. In fact, these guns are so good they’ve almost erased the market for the Glock 26, which used to be the darling of concealed carry.
The truth is that you could make an argument for any of the guns on our list of the five best guns for concealed carry as the “best” – this list is designed to serve as a starting point for your research. If you disagree with our selections, great! Get to the range and do some shooting and find out what you believe the best gun is. Regardless, one thing is true: this is the golden age of concealed carry guns.