Ultimate Picks For Favorite Pocket Pistols

Ultimate Picks For Favorite Pocket Pistols

Ultimate Picks For Favorite Pocket Pistols

Before the culture of concealed carry really took off, most people who carried a concealed handgun were either off-duty law enforcement, military, and some very vigilant law-abiding citizens.

That number has changed very quickly.

It’s now estimated that there are somewhere over 12 million licensed concealed carriers in the United States. And that’s only what can be extrapolated from those states that allow release of those statistics. For the growing number of states that are going to a permitless concealed carry system, the actual number of people who carry a concealed firearm is impossible to count.

This has ultimately changed the way we perceive each other and select our own handguns.

For those who prefer to stay completely concealed and reduce any amount of printing or showing, here’s several pocket carry pistols that have stayed the course.

Ruger LCP

No list of pocket pistols is complete without mention of the Ruger LCP. It’s quite literally in every single gun store in America and is often the first pick for a lot of concealed carriers. Reasons why the Ruger LCP is chosen by concealed carriers:

  • Budget conscious ($279)
  • Trusted brand
  • Very easy to conceal

The Ruger LCP is chambered in .380 Auto, which has received a wide amount of criticism from gun owners that think a 9x17mm is insufficient to penetrate and neutralize an opponent. Loaded with a defense round like a jacketed hollow point or similar, the .380 Auto is every bit as deadly as any other round.

Colt Mustang XSP

If Colt Defense took one of their Colt 1911 Commanders and shrunk it down until the barrel was only 2.75″, it would look an awful lot like the Colt Mustang XSP. This pistol isn’t that common but it’s a hit favorite amongst pocket carriers.

  • 6+1 round capacity of .380 ACP
  • Great for 1911 lovers
  • Tight, precise control

This Colt Mustang XSP was a single stack before single stacks were considered cool. It still has that classic look to it but with sterling precision and accuracy.

Smith & Wesson M&P Bodyguard Revolver

Pistols tend to get all the credit. They’re sleek, aerodynamic, “high speed, low drag”. But, when it comes to rugged performance and carrying a gun in a pocket, the S&W M&P Bodyguard chambered in .38 Spc does the trick.

  • Five round cylinder
  • Optional laser sight (highly recommended)
  • DAO trigger control

DAO revolvers have a tough trigger in comparison with striker-fire pistols, but if you’re carrying in a pocket then that’s not such a bad idea. M&P Bodyguard revolvers can usually be bought cheap at a gun store and they are extremely easy to carry.

Beretta Nano

The Beretta Nano is one of the smallest pistols you can get chambered in 9mm. It only holds six rounds but that’s the idea behind a pocket carry pistol. The Beretta Nano, and it’s slightly smaller cousin, the Pico, were never meant to be pistols you dragged into a rolling gun fight. They were meant to be backup personal protection where a full size pistol isn’t convenient.

  • Ambidextrous controls
  • Extended magazines (8 rounds) available
  • Easy assembly/disassembly

For warm weather, either the Beretta Nano or Pico are perfect choices for a gun that is easy to conceal and performs well under stress.

No Code Needed
J P Enterprises - Ar-15 Reduced Power Spring Kit

J P Enterprises – Ar-15 Reduced Power Spring Kit

Reduced-power springs provide a 3.5 pound trigger pull when used with J.P. triggers, and a pull of 4.5 to 5 pounds when used with standard trigger components.

No Code Needed

MCM Triggers – AR-15 Tactical BLK Trigger Single Stage 3.5lbs

This Brownells AR-15 Tactical Black Trigger features a flat trigger bow that enhances leverage and gives shooters more control over their trigger press.

$289.99 (Reg. $379.99)
No Code Needed
Smith & Wesson M&p Shield 9mm

Smith & Wesson M&p Shield 9mm

Smith & Wesson’s new M&P SHIELD™ is a slim, concealable, lightweight, striker-fired polymer pistol.  Available in 9mm, the new M&P SHIELD features a slim design combined with the proven and trusted features found in the M&P Pistol Series. From the pistol’s easily concealed one-inch profile to its optimized 18-degree grip angle, the M&P SHIELD offers professional-grade features that provide consumers with simple operation and reliable performance.

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Luke McCoy is the founder of USA Carry. In 2007, he launched USA Carry to provide concealed carry information and a community for those with concealed carry permits and firearm enthusiasts.
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Alas, more disrespect for the lowly revolver. I carry the Ruger LCR in 327 Federal Magnum. Small and lethal. And it is in my pocket as I write this.

Byron D Youngblood

Surprised the M&P Sheild didn’t make this list. It’s what I carry (love the feel/grip), is every bit the same size as the Nano, and has a shorter trigger pull. I have both guns and am not happy with the extremely long trigger pull of the Nano (may be a cost consideration?). Looking to trade it in.


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The Nano never should’ve been on the list. It’s to big for even a husky guy to easily conceal in a pocket, which was the point of the list. The Shield is amazing and I carry it almost every day. It is not a hide anywhere gun. The Bodyguard (not revolver because I know very few people who still carry them for ccw) is one of the best choices. You can put it in a pocket or it comes with a case similar to an insulin carry case.


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What is all of the hype over the Ruger LCR? Everyone does realize it is a knock off of the Kel Tec P38T. I I have owned and used a KEL TEC long before the Ruger came out. If you are going to evaluate firearms, then lets do so fairly.

charlie baker

My Ruger LCP in a IWB holster is my everywhere, everyday carry piece. I literally never leave home without it. As for the Kel Tec P38T, I also used to own one of those but I think Ruger just did it better. It’s a slightly higher quality than the Kel Tec. I also once owned a Kel Tec P32, and I kinda wish I still had that one. I like .32 as a defensive caliber. Good enough as a “get off me” gun, and low recoil.

Desert Rat 121

I carry a Tomcat .32 cal. semi; quite happy with it. Gave one to my oldest daughter for the Cave Creek hikes and bikes.


No Glocks listed?


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LCP was my go to mini carry gun; then along came the Remington RM380. Yes, it weighs a bit more, and is slightly larger; however it is nicer to shoot and it’s nice to have a slide that locks back on the last. Still like the LCP when I want something lighter in weight for like a jacket pocket carry. Another favorite is the Sig P938 SAS w/Hogue rubber grip and extended base pad magazine.

orbits2 .

never carry a gun in your pants pocket

Shayne Jenkins

Unless you use an appropriate holster, which the image depicts…