Best Concealed Carry Guns in 2023

Top Picks for Concealed Carry Handguns by Experts in 2023

With the rising concern for personal safety and self-defense, more and more people are turning to concealed carry guns as a means of protection. In today’s world, it’s important to be prepared for any situation, and having a reliable and effective concealed-carry firearm is a crucial part of that preparation. With a plethora of options available, finding the perfect gun to suit your requirements can be a daunting task.

In this article, we’ll provide you with a list of top picks for the best concealed carry guns in 2023. However, before we dive into our recommendations, it’s important to consider some key factors when buying a gun for this particular niche. In this guide, we’ll cover these factors and help you make an informed decision on which is right for you.

2023 Top Picks for Concealed Carry Guns

  1. Smith & Wesson M&P Shield CA Compliant in 9mm
  2. Sig Sauer SP2022 9mm NS CA
  3. Glock 19 9MM CA
  4. S&W 66 2.75IN 357MAG CA
  5. Franklin Armory CA320 9mm
  6. Kimber K6S Stainless LG 357MAG CA

These are the most popular and highly rated concealed carry guns currently on the market. They have been chosen by tens of thousands of our customers, making them the top picks among all the other available handguns for concealed carry.

As you go through the list, you will notice that larger guns dominate the lineup with a few small guns scattered in between. It’s important to note that larger handguns can still be concealed with some effort, albeit with a slight wardrobe change. Bigger guns indeed provide better shooting capabilities, and the largest pistols have greater capacity. Therefore, it’s recommended to consider them as a viable option.

However, smaller guns are generally more comfortable to carry every day, especially when opting for appendix carry. This is why we have listed those too – they are immensely popular for concealed carry due to their convenience and ease of use.

One thing to keep in mind when discussing handgun sizes is that there is no standard sizing chart. Each manufacturer tends to use their terminology when it comes to categorizing its handguns.

1. Smith & Wesson M&P Shield

Smith & Wesson M&P Shield

Key Specifications

Height 4.6 inches
Length 6.1 inches
Weight 20.7 oz/586.8g
Capacity 8-round magazine with spacer, 7-round magazine
Caliber 9mm
Width 0.95 inches
Slide Armonite finish, stainless
Sights White dots, steel
Barrel Armonite finish, 3.1 inches (7.9 cm), stainless
Loaded Chamber Indicator Rear of barrel hood, viewport
Frame Polymer

Smith & Wesson’s M&P is a highly reliable and versatile handgun, featuring a reinforced polymer chassis, ambidextrous controls, superior ergonomics, and advanced safety features. The M&P was designed to meet the demands of law enforcement personnel and the military, ensuring their safety and protection in high-pressure situations.

This particular 9mm pistol features a hammer-fired mechanism, which allows for the use of lighter springs compared to the striker-fired options that currently dominate the market. This results in less resistance when working the slide, making polymer pistols more accessible to a wider range of shooters.

The 9mm M&P shield by Smith & Wesson goes beyond just using lighter springs, as the pistol also incorporates several features to improve its operation. These features include aggressive cocking serrations located both fore and aft, as well as a flared section at the rear of the slide to provide a more secure grip.

Features of Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9mm

  • Comes with a CA Compliant Tactile Loaded Chamber Indicator and Magazine Safety
  • Features an incredibly thin and lightweight design that can be carried comfortably all day
  • Boasts a polymer frame with an embedded stainless steel rigid chassis system
  • Utilizes a striker-fired mechanism for a short, consistent trigger pull with every use
  • Equipped with M&P’s patented take-down lever and sear deactivation systems, allowing for disassembly without having to pull the trigger
  • Includes a single-sided thumb safety for added security
  • Comes with two magazines, one with extended capacity for a full grip experience.

2. Sig Sauer SP2022 9mm NS

Sig Sauer SP2022 9mm NS

Key Specifications

Height 5.7 in. (from pistol grip to the top)
Length 7.4 inches
Weight 29 oz
Capacity 10 rounds
Caliber 9mm
Action Semi-automatic
Sights SIGLITE night sights
Barrel 3.9 inches
Magazines Standard Sig Sauer and MecGar brand SP2022 mags
Frame Polymer

The SP2022 boasts a steel chassis, with metal components that move along the rails of the slide and are integrated into the grip for added durability. Although the SP2022 lacks the full-length rails of the P226, it still offers a high level of build quality that is more than sufficient for non-special operations use.

Similar to 1911, the SP2022 utilizes a system where the slide stop extends past the trigger to hold all the components together. The pin that secures the slide stop holds the barrel link and slides in place. Taking it down is also reminiscent of 1911, as the slide stop comes out when the corresponding holes are aligned.

The redesigned decocker in the Sig now features a shorter and quicker operation, with a more ergonomic feel than the previous version. Additionally, the magazine release has been updated to a modern, Benelli-style triangle shape, departing from the traditional circular design used by Sig.

Features of Sig Sauer SP2022 9mm

  • Designed for a 10-round magazine capacity
  • Night sights for improved low-light accuracy
  • Durable polymer frame with an integrated stainless steel frame and slide rails
  • DA/SA (Double Action/Single Action) trigger system for versatility and safety
  • Short and smooth trigger pull for easy operation
  • Decocking lever for safe decocking of the hammer
  • Ergonomic and textured grip for a secure hold and improved control
  • It features an accessory rail, allowing for the mounting of lights or lasers.
  • California compliant for use in that state

3. Glock 19 9MM CA

Glock 19 9MM CA

Key Specifications

Height 5.04 inches
Length 7.36 inches
Weight 21.16 oz (without mag)
Capacity 10+1 round magazine
Caliber 9mm
Width 1.26 inches
Slide 1-inch
Barrel 4.02 inches

For the past 25 years, Glock’s Gen 3 variant of the Glock 19 has remained an unrivaled favorite. With its compact size, 15+1 capacity, and lightweight polymer frame, it outshone the competition, offering easy handling and simplicity. The Gen 3 enhancements, including molded finger grooves, improved ergonomics, and a universal Glock rail, further solidified its position as a popular and enduring choice in the firearms market.

Comparing the Glock 19 and the Sig Sauer P229, the Glock’s lighter weight and striker-fired action make it an effortless and snag-free choice. With a comparable magazine capacity to other popular models, it offers easy concealment without compromising performance. Reliable on the range and easy to shoot, it earns top marks in every course of fire.

Despite the availability of newer Glock generations, the Gen 3 G19 continues to hold its ground and remains in production, especially in California’s approved roster. Its classic appeal and widespread popularity make it a timeless favorite, likened to iconic firearms like the 1911 and S&W K-frame. A staple in the shooting community, it continues to be cherished and enjoyed by many over the years.

Features of Glock 19 9MM CA

  • Compact and concealable as it is specifically designed for everyday carry.
  • Known for its reliability and performance, the Glock 19 is a trusted choice for self-defense.
  • Features a striker-fired action for consistent shooting.
  • Equipped with an accessory rail, allowing for the attachment of lights and lasers.
  • The textured grip comes with an ergonomic design which ensures a secure and comfortable hold.
  • The Glock 19 CA variant adheres to California’s firearm regulations.
  • The Glock 19 has a long-standing reputation as a popular and effective handgun.

4. S&W 66 2.75IN 357MAG CA

S&W 66 2.75IN 357MAG CA

Key Specifications

Height 5.85 inches
Length 7.8 inches
Weight 33.1 oz
Capacity 6-round magazine
Caliber 357 magnum
Width 1.45 inches
Barrel 2.75 inches
Sights Red Ramp
Frame Stainless Steel

The Smith & Wesson Model 66 Combat Magnum, a personal favorite, was scarce after production ceased in 2005. Fortunately, the revamped 4-inch Model 66-8 was reintroduced two years ago, and now we have the concealed-carry-friendly 2.75-inch version to explore this year. The adjustable sights are easy to use and allow for precise aiming, ensuring accurate shots. The 6-shot capacity is more than sufficient for self-defense purposes, and the smooth trigger pull enhances shooting comfort and control.

Particularly we appreciate the full-length ejector rod, which ensures reliable ejection of spent casings during reloads. It’s a reliable and easy-to-maintain revolver that provides peace of mind when carrying for personal protection. While you will enjoy using semi-automatic pistols, there’s a nostalgic charm to duty-sized revolvers that captivates both experienced shooters and newcomers.

Taking the 4.25″ Model 66 on range trips always sparks engaging discussions about its performance and history. Overall, the S&W Model 66 2.75-inch 357 Magnum is a reliable, accurate, and compact revolver that offers everything one needs for concealed carry and self-defense. It’s a true gem in the world of firearms.

Features of S&W 66 2.75IN

  • The S&W 66 2.75IN 357MAG CA features robust stainless steel construction, ensuring long-lasting durability and reliability.
  • With its 6-shot capacity of .357 Magnum rounds, it delivers formidable firepower for self-defense and range shooting.
  • The medium-sized K-frame offers a well-balanced and controlled shooting experience, allowing for accurate and comfortable shooting.
  • Its 2.75-inch barrel length strikes a perfect balance between concealability and effective performance, making it an ideal choice for concealed carry.
  • Equipped with adjustable sights, shooters can achieve precise aiming for consistent accuracy in various shooting scenarios.
  • This classic revolver design has a rich history and is known for sparking conversations and admiration among both seasoned and new shooters.

5. Franklin Armory CA320 9mm

Franklin Armory CA320 9mm

Key Specifications

Length 7 inches
Capacity 1 ROUND
Caliber 9MM LUGER (9X19 PARA)
Sights SIGLITE® Night Sights
Barrel 3.9” Carbon Steel
Finish Black

Introducing the CA320 by Franklin Armory, a game-changer in California’s handgun market. This innovative single-shot pistol not only made it to the state’s approved roster but also grants owners the freedom to customize and modify it within legal boundaries.

By utilizing the stock P320 slide and fire control system, combined with Franklin Armory’s single-shot frame, the CA320 opens up possibilities for personalized configurations. California residents can transform it into a standard, semi-automatic SIG P320 while complying with the state’s 10-round magazine restriction. Don’t miss out on this exclusive firearm that redefines versatility and adaptability.

CA320 comes with a grip module, designed to ensure flawless chambering of a single round without magazine insertion. Its ingenious construction features a convenient support area for quick and effortless chambering. While it doesn’t lock back on empty, this remarkable firearm from Franklin Armory guarantees a seamless shooting experience.

With its exceptional design and functionality, the CA320 is destined to become a coveted product, captivating firearm enthusiasts far and wide. Prepare to be amazed by this extraordinary creation set to revolutionize the industry.

Features of Franklin Armory CA320

  • The Franklin Armory CA320 showcases a specialized grip module that allows for single-round chambering, providing a unique shooting experience.
  • Designed with California’s handgun regulations in mind, the CA320 offers residents the ability to customize and modify the firearm to suit their preferences.
  • With its reliable and smooth operation, the CA320 ensures consistent performance and accuracy.
  • This firearm exemplifies Franklin Armory’s commitment to innovative design and craftsmanship, making it a standout choice for firearm enthusiasts.

6. Kimber K6S Stainless LG 357MAG

Kimber K6S Stainless LG 357MAG

Key Specifications

Height 4.46 inches
Length 6.62 inches
Weight 23 oz
Capacity 6-rounds
Caliber 9mm
Width 1.39 inches
Action DAO (double action only)
Sights Black serrated, 4.1 in radius
Barrel 2 inches

Designed for personal defense, the K6s Stainless (LG) features Crimson Trace Red Master Series Lasergrips which prove to be particularly useful in high-stress situations. The package comes complete with an adjustment key, warranty, and two brushes for cleaning the LG-950 laser grip lens.

The K6s Stainless (LG) features a grip that combines wooden and rubber sections. The wooden parts are checkered for an improved grip and are held in place by an Allen screw. Removing the screw provides access to the lithium battery compartment of the laser device. The front part of the soft rubber grip is ergonomically designed and includes the laser’s power button and the system itself. The battery life of the laser is four hours in the “on” position.

The revolver boasts an elegant and high-quality design, with excellent functionality for defensive use and everyday carry. It is also discreet and easily concealable, making it a practical choice. Additionally, its caliber allows for the use of various types of ammunition.

Features of Kimber K6S Stainless LG 357MAG

  • Elegant and high-quality design
  • Crimson Trace Red Master Series Lasergrips for effective personal defense
  • Checkered wooden sections on the grip for an excellent grip
  • Soft rubber grip with an ergonomic design for comfortable handling
  • The laser power button and the entire system housed in the front of the grip
  • Lithium battery compartment accessible by removing an Allen screw
  • Four-hour battery life in the “on” position
  • Easily concealable and discreet for everyday carry
  • Compatible with various types of ammo thanks to its .357 Magnum caliber.

In 2023, the market for concealed carry handguns offers a wide range of options that can satisfy any shooter’s needs. Experts have weighed in and selected their top picks for the best concealed carry guns, considering factors such as reliability, ease of use, and overall performance.

There is a gun for every preference and budget, from compact pistols to revolvers. Whether you are a seasoned gun owner or a first-time buyer, the 2023 market has something to offer. Ultimately, choosing the right concealed carry gun depends on your individual needs and preferences, so be sure to do your research and select a gun that suits you best.

However, it’s important to note that there are many other excellent options available on the market that may suit your specific needs and preferences. We will continue to add more of such amazing firearms to assist you in making an informed decision about which gun is best for you.

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