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Women are buying handguns in increasing numbers today. Unfortunately many stereotypes about women and firearms persist. While a well-meaning store owner or vendor may steer female customers towards petite, small caliber pistols and revolvers, the sheer number of women around the world with training in handling firearms of any size - be they military, law enforcement, competitive or civilian shooters - should make such vendors think twice before assuming that the woman standing before them is inexperienced or intimidated by larger handguns. Every shooter, male or female, should choose the gun that feels most comfortable in the hand and suits their particular needs best.

Choosing Handguns for Women

Like any other shooter, a woman should be cognizant of how and where she plans to use her handgun. Do you plan to keep this gun in your home or will you need it for concealed carry? If it is meant to be a self-defense weapon you should consider how powerful it needs to be to stop an attacker - research different handgun and ammunition calibers to learn about stopping power. Then, make sure you try out the calibers you are considering to ensure that you are comfortable firing them.

While many women tend to have smaller hands than men it is not the only reason to get a small handgun. Concealed carry requires a more compact gun, particularly if your wardrobe tends towards form fitting clothing. There are a number of concealed carry holsters, however, that can make guns disappear under even fitted clothes, so be sure to investigate them if you are interested in concealed carry.

Another consideration for less experienced shooters is whether they prefer revolvers to semi automatic pistols. Try shooting both to get a feel for their felt recoil and which you prefer. Both revolvers and semi automatic pistols come in a variety of calibers and can offer as much or as little power as one prefers. Revolvers are an older design and in general lack some of the modern safety elements incorporated into semi automatic pistols. They are also bulkier, heavier and will not fire as rapidly as a semi automatic pistol can. Revolvers do tend to be more reliable than pistols, however. Ultimately the decision is up to the handgun owner.

Handguns for women offer a realm of possibilities, whether they’re meant for competitive shooting, for self defense or use as a sidearm for security, law enforcement and military agents. Whether a woman wants a pink grip, an antique mother-of-pearl handle or a Glock 17, her options as a handgun owner remain the same as any man’s.


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