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What is the Best Glock For Concealed Carry 2024?

Updated: Feb 16

Glock 43, Glock 26, Glock 19, Glock 43x and Glock 48
Glocks. From Left to Right: 43, 26, 19, 43x and 48

Glock is widely regarded as one of the best firearms manufacturers, so choosing the best Glock for concealed carry just makes sense for most people. Along with Sig Sauer, they see wide use in military and law enforcement applications. It only makes sense to wonder, what is the best Glock for concealed carry?

The belief that the Glock is arguably the most widely known gunmaker in the last 30 years is not without merits. Despite some controversies and differences of opinion among the gun-owning community, so many owners and professionals attest that the Glock pistol is the very best functional handgun one can have. When your life is on the line during a self-defense situation, you want the reliability of a Glock.

Major Pros of Glock Pistols

Even the harshest of critics can’t deny the following pros about the Glock:


Glock is known for its reliability; it is common to hear shooters share stories of their Glock running tens of thousands of rounds with few problems. Before Glock was around if you wanted a reliable handgun you went with a revolver. Nowadays, while revolvers are still great handguns, everyone and their brother, sister and cousin know the Glock name. Glock was the first pistol that proved polymer-framed pistols could be reliable, durable, and practical for Law enforcement, military, and civilian use.

Durability and Easy Maintenance

Glock frames are made from high-quality polymer that can sufficiently withstand impacts and stresses when the gun is fired. Other guns made for the same purpose usually spot an aluminum or steel frame which is less rugged than the Glock’s. Glocks are ridiculously easy to maintain. You can watch a few Youtube videos and teach yourself how to disassemble, clean, lubricate and reassemble the firearm in just a few minutes.


The Glock is simply a great gun to possess when it comes to customization because you can find a plethora of accessories for it. You can easily increase your magazine size by adding a few more rounds via a mag extension or installing different types of sights. There are a ton of aftermarket slides, barrels, triggers, and holsters - which makes customizing your Glock both easy and fun. If you want to put a red dot on your gun, look for a "MOS" model (Modular Optics System). If you already own a non-MOS model and want to conceal carry with a red dot you have a few options. You can have your slide milled out by a machine shop, or you can get an after-market optics ready slide that you can swap out.

What is the best handgun for concealed carry?

The best gun for a person to carry is the one they can shoot well and are comfortable carrying. If they are not comfortable carrying a firearm, they are less likely to carry it, and thus less likely to have it when they need it. During a self-defense situation, the gun on your hip is better than the best gun at home locked away in your safe.

Discussions about concealed carry guns exist in a world of their own, separate from the general conversations about firearms. In nearly every corner of the world where these discussions about concealed carry guns are held, GLOCK comes up more often than not as the pistol of choice.

Capacity and how well it shoots vs size and comfort to carry

A good concealed firearm needs to have a powerful enough caliber to stop an enemy, manageable recoil for follow-up shots, high capacity for multiple attackers, and a small or moderate size so it can be comfortably concealed. Glock has mastered the art of creating models of guns that properly balance the capacity, barrel length, frame length, and frame width to give customers many options that can fit their roles and body types. Of all the sizes and shapes of firearms, many permutations are possible, and here we go over the best combinations.

Best Glock Caliber For Concealed Carry

380, 380acp, 9mm, 9mm+p, 40sw, .40S&W, 45acp, .45acp, hollowpoimt, self defense rounds, popular calibers for concealed carry pistol
Left to right: .380ACP, 9mm, .40S&W, and .45ACP.

If you pay a visit to your local sporting goods store, you’ll certainly see shelves stacked with different sized calibers of guns from several manufacturers. Selecting the best caliber for concealed carry can be a daunting task, even for seasoned firearm enthusiasts. Most people choose 9mm, but it is not a closed argument. Certain use cases, shooter preference, training, physical strength, and the size of the gun, should all be taken into consideration.

The 380 vs 9mm vs 40sw vs 45acp debate is a never-ending one, but let’s make sense of it all.

380 ACP

For a concealed carry gun, the 380 ACP is a good choice. 380 and 9mm both have the same diameter projectile, but the 380 has less powder than a 9mm, so there is less recoil, which is welcome due to the small size of many carry pistols. If you are of smaller stature or lack grip strength it might be a good idea to try out 380ACP and see how well you can shoot it. A gun is only as good as its shooter, and it only takes one well-placed shot to bring down an attacker.


380, 380acp, 9mm, 9mm+p, 40sw, .40S&W, 45acp, .45acp, hollowpoimt, self defense rounds, popular calibers for concealed carry pistol, bottom view
View of bottom of (left to right) 380acp, 9mm, .40S&W, and .45acp, hollow point self defense rounds.

The most popular caliber of handguns these days, 9mm or 9x19 or 9mm luger or 9mm parabellum, whatever you call it - has better terminal ballistics than 380. It does have more recoil than 380, but most shooters handle it well. Due to its popularity, it is normally widely available in many offerings of manufacturers, bullet weights, and different variations of hollow point designs.


The .40SW was popular among law enforcement but has since declined in popularity. It has a larger projectile than that of 9mm. It is actually the same diameter as 10mm but with less powder and case length. It can be thought of as a caliber that lives in between the 9mm and .45ACP. One key thing to be aware of is that many shooters prefer the amount of recoil from a 9mm over that of the 40S&W.

Shooting .40SW from a small handgun gives large recoil; only those with a bit of muscle and training can comfortably keep the recoil under control.

.45 ACP

380, 380acp, 9mm, 9mm+p, 40sw, .40S&W, 45acp, .45acp, hollowpoimt, self defense rounds, popular calibers for concealed carry pistol
Top view of (left to right) .380 ACP, 9mm, .40S&W, and .45 ACP, hollow point self defense rounds.

The .45 ACP is a legendary round that is known for its large projectile and good stopping power. In a heavy and/or metal frame gun like the 1911, it is a stellar choice. When shooting a larger caliber out of a small and/or polymer frame gun, the felt recoil is much higher and can be "snappy". This can affect follow-up shot speed, as well as make it an unpleasant experience to take to the range. Unless you have very strong reasons for using a larger caliber over 9mm, we suggest staying away from 40SW and 45ACP for use in CCDW application.

Best Glock for Concealed Carry

Glocks are frequently recommended for concealed carry because of their reliability and durability. Above we discussed the different calibers and how 9mm is the most common choice for a self-defense round. Therefore we will discuss the most populat 9mm models, several of which have .40S&W and .45acp versions. Sw, what is the best 9mm gun for concealed carry?

Glock 19

The Glock 19 has become a bit of a gold standard, which many other guns are judged. When you see several manufacturers rolling out their own pistols to specifically rival the 19, or basing their own guns on the 19 platform, you know you have arrived.

The G19 is a compact pistol by Glock. It is an interesting size, as it blurs the line between the capability of a full-size and the concealability of a mid-size pistol. Its larger size means it has less snappy recoil compared to smaller guns. Hence, it is a gun that you would enjoy shooting all day at the range. With a magazine size of 15 rounds and a rail to hold a light and/or laser, 19 concealed carry is a winning proposition. As our post about the G19 for concealed carry goes over, it is about the largest gun most people can comfortable appendix carry, is a good shooter, and has a great stock capacity. Its capacity and medium-size mean it can double as a duty handgun - the G19 is a great handgun for both CCW and home defense.

Glock 26, Glock 19, concealed carry, CCDW
Glock 26 and Glock 19

Glock 26

The Glock 26 was a very popular option before the introduction of the 43, 48, and 43x. It's a double-stack magazine with a 10 round capacity and a short frame that is off-putting to many shooters. Not being able to accept a 15 round Shield Arms mag and not being able to get a full grip purchase take it out of most people's consideration now that there are better options. The Glock 27 (40SW version) and Glock 30 (45ACP version) both have similar capacity and grip problems - but if you want to carry a gun chambered in something larger than 9mm, they are the only subcompact offerings made by Glock.

Glock 43x

The Glock 43x derives its name from the standard 43 (without the x). Both are single stack magazines, both have the same slide length and both are chambered in 9mm. There is no .40S&W or .45ACP version of the 43, 43x or the 48, like there are with other models(19 and Glock 23, Glock 17 and Glock 22)

Glock 43x, Glock 43, 43x vs 43
Glock 43x vs Glock 43. The larger grip of the 43x allows for higher capacity and better ergonomics.

43 vs 43X

The 43 is one of the smallest Glocks you can buy and is similar to the Walther PPS. The 43x spots a longer frame than the 43 and is a bit shorter than the 48 and 19's. Both the 43 and 43x have a single stack magazine but they differ in size and capacity. The 43 hold 6+1 and the 43x holds 10+1. The 43x's larger magazine fits in the larger grip of the G43X - is thus a taller, larger gripped and a higher capacity version of the G43, which are the primary reasons for its better grip and comfortable shooting. The taller frame of the G43X enables a higher magazine capacity of 10 rounds instead of the traditional 6 of the standard G43.

Glock 43x vs Glock 48. Glock 43x, Glock 48
Glock 43x and Gock 48. Note the same grip length on both guns. The 43X has shorter slide.

Glock 48

The Glock 48 has a longer slide than the 43x, the same grip length and magazine. The longer barell and sight plane help this gun shoot a bit better than the 43x. the same length and height as the 19. The width is narrower like the 43x. To compare 48 vs 19 - the only factor is the width and capacity. and the overall feel is the same for both. But the slide width and the overall width are noticeably thinner than the G19.

By reducing the width and slide frame, the Glock 48 was able to come in 5 oz. lighter than the 19. Might seem not that much of a difference but if you’re using it for CCW, only a full day’s carry in your pockets will be telling.

43X and 48 Major Drawback - solved?

There are not a lot of shortcomings when it comes to the 43X of the 48, except for their lack of capacity. They have the same frame dimensions and thus use the same magazine which holds a single stacked plastic and steel wall magazine capable of carrying 10 rounds of 9mm. Many similar firearms from other manufacturers have a steel-walled magazine that allows for either a true double stack or a staggered stack of ammunition. Remember the excellent after-market options that Glocks have? Shield arms is a company that has solved this oversight. Enter Shield Arms Magazines.

Made from durable stainless steel with a strikingly black oxide or stainless finish. The Shield Arms Magazine is a 15-round magazine for the 43X and 48. This extended capacity offers a flush fit for snag-free capacity performance, thus increasing your carry capacity for maximum firepower. With the Shield Arm Magazine, the G43X becomes the perfect blend of capacity, size, firepower, and conceal ability – all at a reasonable price too.

43x, 48, 19, glock width comparison
Left to Right: 43x, 48 with night sights, and 19. All are the same height. The 43X and 48 are narrower than the 19.

48 vs 19

43x, GLock 43x, Glock43x MOS
Two Glock 43Xs, top is non-MOS model with no accessory rail. Bottom is 43X MOS with accessory rail.

The height of both guns is identical and comes in at 5.01 inches tall. They share the same length grip and similar trigger distance. Last but not the least, like the 43x, the Glock 48 does not have rail on the non-MOS version, so you can’t attach sights like you would for a 19 unless you get the G48 MOS.

19 vs 43X

The 43X is slimmer than the 19 and also has a shorter slide. The capacity out of the box for a 43X is 10 rounds. But this can be extended to 15 with a Shield Arm Magazine. This will match the capacity of the 19's stock 15 round capacity magazine.

Just like the 48, the 43x lacks a rail on non-MOS models. So if you want to carry a 43x with a rail mounted light or laser, make sure to get the MOS model.

Which iron sights are best on a Glock?

There are three versions of sights available on most Glocks, in order of expense are: standard Glock sights, Night sights and Ameriglo Sights. Here are all three on three G48's.

Smallest Concealed Carry Glock - Glock 42 vs 43

When it comes to concealment, both guns are compact, so they can be easily carried with nobody noticing. The G42 is chambered in 380ACP and is fairly similar to the Ruger LCP. The G43 is chambered in 9mm. If you are looking for the best 380ACP Glock for CCW, it's the G42. Is G43 the best carry gun? If you want the smallest 9mm Glock and are okay with its 6+1 capacity, then the 43 is the gun for you.

So, what is the best Glock for concealed carry?

The considerable difference in capacity used to be a major factor when choosing between the 19, 43X, and 48. However, with the capacity upgrade of the Shield Arm Magazine (10+1 --> 15 +1)in the slim frame of the 43x and the 48 lets those guns match the 19 but do it in a slimmer and lighter firearm. If you want the smallest gun possible go with the 43, or 42 if you want 380ACP. If you want the best shooting gun and are okay with extra width and weight, go with the 19. If you want the slide length of the 19 but want a slimmer and lighter gun, go with the 48. If you want a gun that has a shorter slide, thin frame and lighter weight, go with the 43x. The best first gun and/or the gun that fits the most roles, the choice is the 19.

Many handguns may seem like a reasonable choice on paper but in reality, every user has personal preferences when it comes to ergonomics, trigger controls, capacity, and recoil management. Your best bet is to learn about the different options and then go handle a few at your local gun shop, and if possible rent a few at the range so you can see which you shoot best. At X-Ring Supply we have a ton of options and can help you decide on the right gun for you. We can give you tips for your concealed carry set up. If you are a first responder, we offer a LEO/Military/First Responder Discount, plus you can get a great deal with the Glock Blue Label Program.

X-Ring Supply, Delaware Gun Shop, Delaware gun store, Delaware concealed carry, DE CCDW
Glocks and many other guns in the Concealed Carry case at X-Ring Supply, a gun shop in Delaware.

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1 Comment

Gregg Ryan
Gregg Ryan
Jun 30, 2022

Thank You for a most informative website. I have been thinking about open carry and concealed carry in DE. The Information you provided made that choice a whole lot easier. Also choosing what weapon to carry as a concealed carry weapon was excellent. Thank you for a great website, and I would love to see you one day.

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