What gun is best for a girl?


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which handgun is best for a girl

Springfield XD sub compact 9mm


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All good info, as Sfe said make sure you can handle racking the slide and loading the magazine on whatever you think is an option. My wife can only rack the slide easily on the Walther PK380 we bought for her, she had trouble with most other. Same with the magazines, the ones with stiffer springs were too hard for her to load. We almost went to a revolver but settled on the Walther. Best to go rent several at the range t find one that fits your hand best, and that you can work easily. Take everything in to account - racking the slide, loading the magazine, the weight and whether you will carry it if it's too heavy, the size and whether it fits with your dress and ability to carry. Better to have a smaller caliber pistol you will carry than a bigger one you will not.


The other micro-.380 with a really easy slide to rack is the SIG P238. It's the only semi auto my wife can confidently do the manual of arms with. She can load, unload, and clear the gun of jams, double feeds, stovepipes, the works. She's 70 years old and has very weak hands.

I've not found anybody that thought the P238 was anything but pleasant to shoot.

My wife has begun to think about carrying. She seems drawn to revolvers. She has weak hands and fingers and has been unable to rack anything but a 22 cal.

Today at a gun show we compared a Kel-tec 380 to the Sig P380. Holy cow what a difference. While the Sig costs twice as much, it racks like a 22. I was impressed. I guess you get what you pay for. I should add that we have never shot one.

That being said, I personally was impressed with the Ruger LC9. I'm thinking of trading in my Kel-tec PF-9.


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First off I agree with a lot of the posts that say you should try different ones and a lot of them. However, if you are a person with small hands and you would rather carry a semi-auto I do have a suggestion. I have freakishly small hands, ring finger size 6, very small but I don't particularly care for revolvers. I carry a 709 slim by Taurus. It is compact, easy to carry and fits my hands. The kickback isn't very bad and I can maneuver the slide and load the clip just fine. You can also buy re-looading helpers to reload more quickly if you want. I carry a weapon on the job and it is in plain sight on my hip and very comfortable, not too heavy.

I feel your pain! After handling quite a few guns, I got a Taurus 740 slim, as it was a much more comfortable grip for someone with smaller hands. What I didn't consider was size of the gun itself.... I am also a smaller person in general and just plain don't dress baggy. So it's hard for me to conceal well without some serious wardrobe planning. As I currently work where I cannot carry while there, it hasn't been much of an issue on my days off to plan a bit. Now I'm looking at switching jobs to work from home and will be able to carry anytime, and I'm considering a Ruger LCP as a second carry gun as I can inside the waistband it much easier. I'm not as happy carrying a .380 vs a .40, but I haven't found another option that considers my budget, size requirements, etc so well. (If anyone has a suggestion, I'll check it out!) If you can carry a little larger, my friend's daily carry is a Kahr PM40 and he's been verrry happy with it, and thi is coming from a guy that owns more guns that some gun shops. It's still smaller than the Taurus 740 slim but just enough bigger that it didn't quite work for me.


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I am too old to be considered a "girl," but I will answer from a woman's standpoint. :)

Those that recommend that you TRY, TRY, TRY (meaning handle, shoot, and see if you can manage shooting/caring for/take-down of the firearm) are correct. The best firearm FOR YOU is the one that feels best in YOUR hand and the one that YOU handle the best.

I am a nerdy, research type by nature. I researched my first gun to death, narrowed my choice down to 3, and then headed off to a range that had a lot of rentals. Interestingly enough, I came home with a gun that didn't even make my research list.

I have since purchased 2 more handguns and a shotgun. I have to say that while I still LOVE my first purchase (H&K USP9 compact), I keep that one at home mostly. I carry a Kahr MK9 (metal ... there is also a PM9 model which is polymer) in a custom IWB holster every day, and for range work I prefer my XDM9 compact.

For me, nothing feels better in my hand than the Kahr. It is very thin, and its heft--because it is metal and NOT polymer--makes it shoot very nicely for such a small gun. Simply put, it FITS ME. Add to that the THINNESS of the gun, and it conceals very easily on my 5'6" vaguely-athletic frame.

I shoot all the guns when practicing (regularly! It is, after all, carried for self defense), but the XDM9 is really a joy to shoot. It has a very soft recoil, which means quicker follow-up shots and a more pleasant shooting experience in general. It is very accurate, and it is also easier to clean that the others (I can clean the XDM in about 15 minutes LESS time than the others).

SERIOUSLY, GO HANDLE AND SHOOT AS MANY GUNS AS YOU POSSIBLY CAN. You will know when you handle it and shoot it which gun is for YOU.

Oh yeah, don't limit yourself to revolvers. Many women get revolvers because the men in their lives (relatives or salespeople) tell them that it will be easier for them because they won't have to struggle to "rack the slide." Unless you have some kind of limiting factors coming into play, you shouldn't have a problem if you use the SLINGSHOT technique explained here by Massad Ayoob (he has daughters that he taught to shoot at very young ages that use this method) :

Armed and Female by Massad Ayoob Issue #63

For example, most men operate a semiautomatic pistol by holding the frame in their dominant hand, and reaching across their chest with the free hand and grabbing the slide to “rack” it back. This is an upper body strength intensive technique, pitting arm against arm, and a lot of smaller or older women can’t do it well with many pistols. They’ll have better luck with the “slingshot” technique, in which the support hand firmly grabs the slide and pulls back while the gun-hand is pushing forward. This can be combined with a turn of the hips that puts the entire body weight into the movement, making it happen almost effortlessly.

Link Removed

I actually tip my shooting hand so that the top of my wrist is parallel to the ground. Then I grasp the gun with my support hand's thumb almost parallel to my trigger finger (which is along the SIDE of the gun, as shown in the picture), which allows me to grasp MORE of the slide than what this man is grabbing. I use my WHOLE HAND (thumb and all my fingers) to grasp the slide--this man is using only his thumb and pointer finger. Someday I will post a picture....

All slides are a bit stiff to rack at first (especially if you are not used to doing it), but the springs will loosen up over time.

Best of luck,

This was very useful information - particularly as I transition from a .38 snubby to a Ruger LC9. I have trouble racking my husband's guns and your post helped me understand why.

Aili McKeen

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Go to the store & handle all the small handguns. Then, any which you like best, look up online & see what people say about them. Then look some more. Shoot them if you can (many stores have indoor ranges). Get friends to take you to the range & shoot their's. THen, what ever feels best for you.

Springs can also be replaced with lighter ones: many guns come with 7 lb or even greater, slides, but for $15 it is VERY easy to put a 4.5 or 5 lb spring in a pistol... don't let a stiff slide deter you from an otherwise perfect pistol.


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Guns for women

My wife loves her ruger lc9 you have to custom order a holster right now ( it being so new ) but they are ideal cc for any smaller framed person.


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On a side note practice practice practice ...... My wife refused to shoot for 38 years of her life and was in an abusive relationship. After much practice and what I like to call trigger therapy she is now a confidant woman and a very proficient shooter. Your weapon is a tool it is not there for any other reason than to save a life in an emergency by practicing you will insure if that time ever comes you will be able to complete your mission. Good luck and god bless

Aili McKeen

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My wife has begun to think about carrying. She seems drawn to revolvers. She has weak hands and fingers and has been unable to rack anything but a 22 cal.

Today at a gun show we compared a Kel-tec 380 to the Sig P380. Holy cow what a difference. While the Sig costs twice as much, it racks like a 22. I was impressed. I guess you get what you pay for. I should add that we have never shot one.

That being said, I personally was impressed with the Ruger LC9. I'm thinking of trading in my Kel-tec PF-9.

You know, a pistol's spring is easy to replace. A friend of mine (a 82 y.o. man) bought his first pistol (always been a revolver man), and had trouble with the slide. It came from the factory with like a 9 lb spring! We looked it up online, ordered a 5 lb replacement and took about 3 minutes to change it.

That said, I like revolvers too. I carry an LCR .38 SP+P.


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Interested in knowing what posters would recommend for a petite (5'1") woman. I can shoot a .40 although the grip feels a bit too big for my hands and the kick is big for my size. Something smaller .............I did hold and liked the feel of the taurus .380, but haven't shot one yet? How's the kick?


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Don't know about the Taurus .380.

Generally, the smaller the gun the more the recoil. A .380 Ruger LCP, for example, while a lower powered load is a bear to shoot and a full sized 1911 in .45 is relatively easy. A full sized 9mm would be even nicer. Little light guns, while easier to hold for a small person, are easier to conceal but harder to shoot. Larger guns because of the larger grip and mass, spread the force of recoil out over a larger surface but are a bear to conceal. Somewhere there is a happy medium, or, you have to have at least 2 guns, one for the range, one for CC. The range gun also works for home defense.

Good luck in your search.


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Try them all...My daughter had a .38 lightweight, no hammer and she hated it and I do not blame her...The gun kicked like a mule! Many ranges have guns you can try out, our range charges $20 and if you purchase a gun from them they do not charge you the $20. My wife shoots a .22LR P22 and really enjoys it; she is getting comfortable enough to shoot my sr9c now


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My mama is small framed person but wanted to carry, so we looked and got her a smith .22 mag. Does well for her. But I agree with everyone else. It's the brand and caliber that YOU like the best and are the most comfortable with.


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First I can't believe that an INSTRUCTOR would suggest 2 diffrent weapons one to carry and one for the range. Don't even think of doing this. When your life can depend on your range training and you grab your carry gun in the heat of a gun fight and your brain say's oh! **** what is this in my hand and you end up DEAD because of training that you did with another weapon that fit your hand diffrently . PRACTICE WITH WHAT YOU CARRY and then you can switch between carry ammo and practice ammo for a lighter recoil. But you must also shoot your carry ammo from time to time.
Both my wife and I carry Walther PK-380's with Speer Gold Dot 95 grain hollow point ammo and I reload 95 grain hollow point ammo to the same specks that the Speer ammo is. But I am fortunate as I can reload for everything that I have and also use my chronograph to check the loads. I am not saying that you have to become a reloader, I am just saying that you should practice with what you will carry as far as your weapon is concerned and ammo of a like nature if possible.


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What's wrong with being competent with more than one gun? I never would tell someone to not practice with a carry gun, and their carry ammo. I have more than 2 guns and I work with all of them. I have multiple carry guns too. They all work with different outfits.


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that is like asking what is the best purse or high heels or make-up ...

shoot many. find one you are comfortable with shooting and lugging around all day.

then shoot until you are proficient with it.

sent from my sending instrument ...


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What a fun adventure you have begun! I agree with those saying that you should try out as many as you can. Go with friends or family to the range, you will probably be surprise how many people will come talk to you and let you try their guns. If you don't have a range just go shooting with who you can and get your hands on as many different guns as possible. Also, exploring useful sites regarding women and concealed carry will be helpful. I have enjoyed corneredcat.com and faliaphotography's videos on YouTube. Also a new site focused on women and concealed carry is <a href"http://www.concealcarry.co">ConcealCarry.Co/a> I believe, I saw that they were doing a beta test on their site so it will be open for a bit so you can give them feedback as to what would help you and what you would like to see.

I started with a kahr pm40 and baby eagle 9mm, sold those, bought a 1911 and then ended up getting a Sig P238 for concealed carry. Everyone and their situations are different though. Take your time, be patient, look, hold, and shoot as many as you can and then decide.

Enjoy!! The hunt is part of the fun!!


There is no one gun that is best for anyone. You, the individual, need to look at, hold, aim, try out for fit, a number of guns to find the one that "fits" you best. I, too, am a senior, age 69. Personally, I finally chose a Taurus PT709 Slim 9mm as my carry weapon of choice. It fits my hand and the recoil is not too much for me to manage (when I grip properly and give the gun enough support from both strong hand and support hand). I also have a Taurus PT738 (.380 caliber) which is smaller than the 9mm.

I really enjoy target shooting and go to the range a couple of time a month -- would go more often if I could afford the ammo and the gas to get to the range more often.

Whatever you choose, learn to use it properly; training and practice are very important and you can't get too much of either. And ultimately, enjoy it and pray you never have to use it to protect yourself from an attack.:help:


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The best gun for a woman is one she can proficiently and consistently hit her target with whether revolver or pistol. Have 2 also, one for a backup.


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Try all of them you can, find the one or two that you like, that fit your hand, that feel good for you to use. I have several handguns that I have acquired through the years. Both wheelguns and autos, all of them are good weapons, have different carry requirements, and I pretty much practice shooting all of them from time to time. Right now, I carry an XDm 45acp 3.8 Compact. I had been carrying a 1911 gov in 45, but it is a very old gun, it was time to get something new, so the XDm was it's carry replacement. I also have a little Taurus 22 that more often than not is my pocket carry. I practice weekly with both. Its all about you, have it your way. Just make sure whatever you decide on you get out to the range and be as proficient with it as you can.

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