Top 8 Handguns for 2018 — A Woman’s Choice for Power

By CTD Blogger published on in Firearms

Pink guns are great, and Tiffany Blue models earn plenty of style points. However, firearms have a purpose and that is putting rounds on target. If you want a particular color, order it or send it to your favorite gunsmith to have it Cerakoted. That works for all guns, but color does not make a handgun right for a woman. Women need guns we can count on to defend our family or person. Guns that ring steel in competition or tear the center out of the 10-ring out of paper when in capable hands, so those were the criteria for this list.

Oh yeah, I only listed seven guns here. Number eight is for you. Leave your choice in the comment section!

By Kimberly Pelletier

Glock 19X with nPVD slide coating

Glock 19X

Glock 19X

Ok, I’ll admit that this choice has a bit to do with all of the hype of the new Glock 19X, but not as much as you would think. I had the Glock 19 Gen 4 on my original list and decided to switch to the new model. Glock’s first ever “Crossover” pistol, the Glock 19X, combines the best features of two of its most popular and most trusted field-tested platforms. The full-size Glock 17 frame and the compact Glock 19 slide have joined forces to produce the ideal pistol for all conditions and all situations.

The 19X comes in the coyote color with the first-ever factory colored slide, finished with a nPVD slide coating to prevent corrosion. Additional features include the Glock Marksman Barrel (GMB), no finger grooves, ambidextrous slide stop levers and lanyard loop. Included with the pistol is a standard 17-round magazine, two 17+2-round magazines and coyote-colored pistol case.

Glock 19X
Capacity 17/19/33
Length 7.44 inches
Height 5.47 inches
Barrel Length 4.02 inches
Weight 24.83 ounces unloaded
Caliber 9mm
SIG Sauer P320 pistol right

SIG Sauer P320

SIG Sauer P320

When SIG Sauer sets out to change the definition of a Striker Fired Pistol, it ended up with the SIG P320. The SIG Sauer P320 is the answer to shooter demands for a reliable, durable, accurate, and well made, striker fired pistol for duty, defense, competition, and recreational shooting. In fact, the SIG Sauer P320 continues the modularity options found in the P250 but with improved ergonomics and features. When the very best is called for, the SIG Sauer P320 will answer.

Specifications and Features

  • SIG Sauer P320 Full Size G320F9B
  • 9mm Luger
  • 4.7″ Barrel
  • 17 Rounds
  • Polymer Frame
  • Contrast Sights
  • 8″ Overall Length
  • 5.5″ Height
  • 29.4 oz
  • Stainless Steel Slide
  • Nitron Finish
  • Striker Fired Trigger
  • 5.5 to 7.5 lb. trigger pull
  • Polymer Grip Module
Smith and Wesson M&P 2.0

Smith and Wesson M&P 2.0

Smith & Wesson M&P 9mm M2.0

The M&P M2.0 pistol, the newest innovation to the respected M&P polymer pistol line. Designed for personal, sporting, and professional use, the M&P M2.0 delivers an entirely new platform, introducing innovative features in nearly every aspect of the pistol, including trigger, grip, frame, and finish. Highlights of the M&P M2.0 pistol include an extended stainless-steel chassis and a low barrel bore axis for reduced muzzle rise and faster aim recovery. The M&P M2.0 pistol further improves performance with a fine-tuned, crisper trigger, lighter pull and a tactile and audible reset. The pistol, available in three calibers, includes an aggressively-textured grip and four interchangeable palmswell inserts for optimal hand-fit and trigger reach. The striker-fire, semi-automatic polymer pistol is available in matte black or FDE (Flat Dark Earth) finishes, and includes two magazines, a limited lifetime warranty, and a lifetime service policy.

Specifications and Features

  • Low barrel bore axis makes the M&P pistol more comfortable to shoot reducing muzzle rise and allowing for faster aim recovery
  • Optimal 18-degree grip angle for natural point of aim
  • Four interchangeable palmswell grip inserts for optimal hand fit and trigger reach – S, M, ML, L
  • Aggressive grip texture for enhanced control
  • New M&P M2.0 crisp trigger with lighter trigger pull
  • Tactile and audible trigger reset
  • Accurate 1 in 10” twist M&P M2.0 barrel
  • Extended rigid embedded stainless steel chassis to reduce flex and torque when firing
  • Armornite durable corrosion resistant finish
Taurus Model 66 profile left stainless

Taurus Model 66

Taurus Model 66

The Taurus Model 66 revolvers are a longtime favorite of security personnel and perfect for Homeland Defense Forces. With a choice of .38 Special +P (Model 82) or .357 Magnum (Model 65), this medium frame, 6-shot revolver features comfortable rubber grips and a deep, lustrous finish. With fixed sights and a custom Single Action/Double Action trigger for improved accuracy and speed, the 65 and 82 are the perfect partners for whatever trouble lurks around the corner. For even more firepower, the Model 66 steps up to the plate with an impressive 7 rounds of .357 Magnum.

Specifications & Features

  • .357 Magnum
  • 4″ barrel
  • 1:16.5″ twist with 6 grooves
  • 7 rounds
  • Transfer bar safety
  • Single/double action Medium steel frame
  • Black rubber grips
  • Matte stainless steel finish
  • Fixed front and adjustable rear sight
  • 5.68″ tall
  • 1.5″ wide
  • 10.5″ overall length
  • 38 oz unloaded
SIG P250 pistol, left profile, two tone

The SIG P250 is a DAO design that offers good handling and a smooth trigger.

SIG Sauer P250

The P250, SIG Sauer’s first modular pistol, offers a smooth double-action trigger pull for consistency. Its full-size frame is ideal for target shooting, home defense and any scenario where shootability and sighted accuracy are of the highest priority. This pistol features a full-size grip, full-length slide, and contrast sights. Available calibers include 9mm, .40 S&W and .45 ACP. Safety features include a firing pin safety and disconnect safety.

Specifications & Features

  • Caliber: 9mm Luger / .45 Auto
  • Action Type: Semi-Auto
  • Frame Size: Full-Size
  • Frame Finish: Stainless Steel
  • Frame Material: Stainless Steel
  • Slide Finish: Nitron
  • Slide Material: Stainless Steel
  • Accessory Rail: M1913
  • Trigger: DAO
  • Barrel Length: 4.7 in (119 mm)
  • Overall Length: 8.1 in (206 mm)
  • Overall Width: 1.4 in (36 mm)
  • Height: 5.5 in (140 mm)
  • Weight: 29.5 oz (836 g)
Kimber Micro 9 pistol left profile

Kimber Micro 9

Kimber Micro 9

Micro slides are made to the tightest allowable tolerances, with barrels machined from stainless steel for superior resistance to moisture. All Micro frames are shaped from the finest aluminum for integrity and strength. In many respects a miniature 1911, among the most important Micro 9 design advantages is a single action trigger with the kind of short, smooth pull that ensures accuracy and builds confidence. The thumb safety, slide release and magazine release are pure 1911 as well. Standard features include a lowered and flared ejection port for flawless ejection and a beveled magazine well for fast, positive loading. Sights are steel—not plastic—and mounted in machined dovetails for additional integrity. Each Micro 9 includes en extended 7-round magazine.

Ideal for shooters with small hands as well as those who insist on mild recoil combined with enough power for concealed carry or home protection, Micro 9 pistols are the right choice for many applications. Best of all, they offer unequaled Kimber quality, dependability and performance.

Specifications & Features

  • Chambered in 9mm
  • Minimum size and weight
  • Hogue black rubber grips
  • 1911-style operation controls
  • Stainless steel slide and barrel
  • Lightweight aluminum frame
  • Single action trigger
Browning Black Label 1911-380 Pro Stainless pistol

Browning’s Black Label 1911-380 Pro Stainless is available in full-size and compact versions, with an optional accessory rail. The slide is stainless steel and the barrel has a rust-­resistant satin-silver finish. Grips are a G-10 composite.

The Browning 1911-380 — The Right 380

The new Browning 1911-380 is the Right Design, the Right Size, with the Right Features. Based on the John M. Browning’s 1911 pistol design and using the cartridge he created, the new 1911-380 pistol gets it right in every way.

Pretty much everything you want to know about the new 1911-380 is contained in the information and videos below. However, sometimes it is handy to get a second opinion. To read a detailed, third party review on the Browning 1911-380 you will want to go to the NRA website America’s 1st Freedom. The article titled Exercise Your Freedom | A Whole New .380 was written by Frank Winn, Guns & Gear Editor and was published on Thursday, May 28, 2015.

There are some very informative things that come out about the Browning 1911-380 as Frank and others put it to the test. This quote will be of interest to you: “In every test we conducted, on paper, on steel (plates to 35 yards), and through defensive and competitive drills, the Black Label performed flawlessly.”

Browning 1911-380
Caliber 380 Barrel Length 3 5/8″
Overall Length 6 7/8″ Weight 16 oz
Magazine Capacity 8 Sight Radius 4 3/4″
Barrel Finish Matte Receiver Finish Matte
Front Sight Combat White Dot Rear Sight Combat White Dot
Barrel Material Steel Checkering Molded
Receiver Material Black Composite Trigger Finish Matte Black
Trigger Guard Finish Matte Black Magazine Type Single Stack
Trigger Material Alloy Trigger Guard Material Composite
Case ABS MSRP $799.99

This is not your average ladies gun roundup, but it should be. Women are every bit as capable of carrying and shooting full-size, full-power handguns as the gents.

Which gun or guns would add to the list? Share your answers in the comment section.

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The mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, "The Shooter's Log," is to provide information-not opinions-to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (56)

  • The Commish

    |

    My grand daughter will be taking her CCL cousre in two weeks & is interested in a reasonable carry pistol. She loves my Hi Standard 22 target pistol but it’s too big to conceal. She does well shooting my Springfield 9mm XDM but has problems racking the slide. She likes the looks of my Beretta Nano but hasn’t fired it yet. There is no way she will carry any one of the pistols mentioned in this article. The writer must think the lady shooter has to be a summo wrestler to carry one of these pistols. Even a 380 has too much recoil for most ladies. I plan on having her try a Beretta Tomcat in 25 ACP with a tilt barrel that doesn’t have to be racked. Maybe a Kel Tec or some other 25 auto if we can find one at a reasonable price. As for the pistols in the article leave them to the men and lady LE officers, or leave them at home in a nightstand. They are inappropriate for a lady to carry in her purse or on her person. Amen.

    Reply

  • richard

    |

    The best hand gun for a woman is the same as it is for a man. Comfortable in the hand, reliable, the most stopping power you can handle.
    The size depends on how it is to be used. Range, home defense, concealed…

    My older daughter is afraid of anything bigger than a 22lr, and my younger daughter love my full sized 1911 .45 ACP

    Reply

  • Furrystoat

    |

    This article is VERY lopsided toward semiautos and the only wheelgun is a pretty big one that won’t fit in the purse of most Ladies I know and would be pretty tough to conceal otherwise.

    For Ladies’ concealed carry as well as for Gents, I’d recommend considering a revolver.

    I LOVE my Kimber K6s. Six rounds of .357 magnum in the lightest revolver available in its class, and it’s VERY well-made and a joy to shoot. Easy to conceal, an enclosed hammer so it won’t snag on your clothes or a holster when you draw, simple to use and with a quality revolver you have the peace of mind in knowing that when you pull the trigger it WILL go bang. Yes, it’s expensive. Yes, it’s worth it.

    Reply

  • John Wahlquist

    |

    Have your daughter search online for the “Ladies Pistol Project” – a survey by women of handguns for women to use. Not talking pretty colors here – looking at form and function in a womens hands. And not just women who are proficient marksmen but the survey also include women who were new to firearms. It asked a panel to review and shoot various handguns and evaluated the responses based on hand size and overall preference. It comes in two parts – part I was a first overview while Part II was intended to examine concealed carry guns. All opinions are by women and the results speak to what a large group of women find useable and acceptable in a handgun (even going so far as to define a Frankengun based on the features the women liked from the various guns tested)

    Reply

  • Jim Hovater

    |

    My daughter is shopping for her first CCW firearm. This article was of little to no use for her, especially since she’s only 4’11” and 90 pounds.

    Reply

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