When it comes to firearms, a good fit means almost as much as good mechanisms. People simply have a hard time shooting with an uncomfortable gun. Since men and women are built differently, the best gun for men is rarely the best gun for women. We’ve put together a list of three good choices each for handguns, rifles, and shotguns, along with our top choice for female shooters. We prioritized ergonomics, but overall performance and value were also major considerations during our search.
10. Glock 26
The Glock 26 is one of the smallest Glocks, but it’s still perfectly lethal. It’s one of the best concealed carry guns for women, and the textured handle helps to make sure that shooters won’t lose their grip if they draw it quickly. Like every Glock, it’s an extraordinarily reliable weapon, which is a significant asset for a daily carry weapon. Since most Glocks rely on similar mechanisms, it’s also a valuable teaching tool for people who might move on to larger Glocks later. No woman, regardless of skill level, would go wrong by choosing a Glock 26 as their carry weapon.
9. Walther CCP
The CCP is a concealed carry weapon with minimal recoil. It relies on Walther’s Softcoil system to power the gun’s action, which also helps to cut down on recoil. Two separate safeties make this fairly safe to carry, even for novices who are worried about accidents. The grip’s shape and texture are optimized for a secure grip, which makes the weapon comfortable and easy to shoot. All of these features, along with the gun’s affordable price, make it an excellent choice for a novice or intermediate shooter who wants to get used to carrying a concealed weapon safely.
8. Smith and Wesson Model 638
|Manufacturer||Smith and Wesson|
|Caliber||.38 S&W SPECIAL +P|
The 638 is a tiny revolver. However, that helps to mitigate the problems with recoil and heavy trigger pulls that dissuade many women from trying them out. Like most revolvers, the 638 is simple to use and extremely difficult to damage even with minimal maintenance, so it’s the best pistol for occasional shooters. The gun’s hammer is completely enclosed, so it won’t snag on long-sleeved dresses when fired. This might be the best carry gun for women, novice or expert, who wants to carry a revolver or use any pistol on an occasional basis.
7. Winchester Model 70 Featherweight
The original Model 70 is almost a century old and still one of the most popular rifles. This is a lighter variant, but it doesn’t lose any of that famous quality. This weapon’s main asset is its accuracy, which comes partly from the quality of the components and partly from design features, such as a recessed target crown. Both a pad and a recoil lug that is integrated into the receiver help to reduce kick for more accuracy and comfort. This might be the best gun for women for long-range shooting, but novices who might not stick with the sport should start with a cheaper rifle.
6. Ruger American Rifle Compact
The American Compact wasn’t designed specifically for women, but it’s light enough that most find it comfortable. The trigger pull is also adjustable, so most women can get it to an acceptable weight. The rubber buttpad also makes this appealing to many women, since it significantly reduces recoil without taking up so much space that it ruins the ergonomics. Those features make this the best gun for women that want a versatile rifle for general use, especially for novices that are concerned about recoil.
5. Weatherby Vanguard Camilla
The Camilla is a durable variant on the Vanguard rifle that was designed by and for women. In particular, the recoil pad is smaller than usual and tilted to ensure that it fits feminine shoulders. In addition, the grip is slimmer so it is more comfortable for small fingers. It’s a bolt action rifle with an enclosed bolt sleeve and one-piece bolt body, so it’s very hard to damage the action. That is the best gun for women who are still novices and haven’t learned how to perform most maintenance procedures, or for more experienced shooters who want to save some time.
4. Syren Elos Venti Light
Syren specializes in making guns for women, so the Elos Venti Light may be the best gun for women who like to hunt. It’s light enough that most women can carry it for the whole hunting trip without any problems, and the excellent construction ensures that they can hit plenty of targets in the field. The light gauge does limit its application to small prey, and the price means that it’s only a good choice for dedicated shooters. Novices and intermediate shooters will get almost as much performance from cheaper guns, so they should generally look elsewhere.
3. Mossberg 500 Youth Bantam
The Mossberg 500 is popular for a reason. It’s too big for some women, but the Youth model is often a perfect fit. It features dual extractors, double action bars, and a special anti-jam elevator to make sure that it’s reliable. It also has a top-mounted safety, so it is unlikely to get it accidentally flipped. That makes this a great choice for novices who still need some time to learn proper shooting techniques, but experienced shooters can benefit from the gun’s accuracy and reliability in the field.
2. Browning Feather Lightning
The Citori is one of the best choices for women who need a powerful shotgun. Not every woman can handle a 12 gauge, but most can, and this is one of the lightest options available. Like all of Browning’s weapon, it’s highly reliable and accurate, plus the engraved stock makes it a beautiful weapon. The gun features a selective trigger with a reasonably light pull. It’s expensive, so it’s restricted to dedicated shooters. However, it’s the best gun for women who need a lot of stopping power in their shotgun.
1. Savage Lady Hunter
We picked the Lady Hunter as the best gun for women because it is optimal for the female form and it can perform in a huge variety of situations. Little features, like a raised comb and a slightly angled grip, tailor the ergonomics to suit most women. A pad greatly reduces felt recoil, which is good for women who are nervous about their gun’s kick. The trigger pull is adjustable, ranging from two and a half pounds to six, but it’s also accurate and comfortable right out of the package. Any woman can put this rifle to good use and learners who want a good experience with their first weapon.
Making The Right Choice
All in all, there is a whole world of weapons to choose from, so we could never hope to find the best gun for women in every situation. If you have any experience with other weapons or something that you want to add to our reviews, be sure to share it in the comment section. It will ensure that your peers have the best possible chance at finding a gun that meets their needs. If you wish to browse a specific list on weapons for women, you might also consider this guide to handguns.