5 Best 380 Pistol of 2023 Reviews | Perfect Guns in the Right Hands and at Close Range

All you have to do is jump online or turn on the TV to see how violent the world has become. Just in the past 10 years alone, we've seen a spike in weapons sales due to the increasing chaos taking place around the world.

More and more people are getting serious about protecting themselves, and why should they be? Everywhere you look, there is a story about someone getting attacked without provocation, homes were broken into, senseless murders, riots... I could go on and on. 

If you're reading this, you know why you're here. So let’s get started, shall we?

Top 3 380 Pistols

1. [Best 380 Pistol Overall]
Glock 42

conceal carry

Editor's Rating 


2. [Best for the Money]
 Ruger LCP 380 ACP

top 2

Editor's Rating 


3. [Best for the Balance and Handling]
 Sig Sauer P238

gun and bullets

Editor's Rating 


The Best 380 Pistols for Concealed Carry

I've had a lot of different 380 pistols in my hands, and I can tell you that not all of them are made equally. In fact, there are some real stinkers out there. I want you to feel confident with the gun you are carrying. After all, we're potentially talking about your life here - or the life of your loved ones. These and the ones we reviewed here are also the top picks for women.

You need a concealed carry 380 pistol that is reliable, easy to carry, and easy to conceal. Moreover, I'd like you to compare them to the ones in this post. That's precisely the type of 380 pistols I've tried to include for your consideration. I'd like to begin with my personal concealed carry weapon and proceed from there. 

Best 380 Pistol Reviews

[Overall Best 380 Pistol] 

1. Glock 42

A Spot Well-Earned

Few best-of lists are complete without a Glock. And when it comes to a 380 pocket pistol, there's no way that the Glock 42 isn't featured. Like all Glocks, you can look forward to easy fieldstripping this small gun. Whereas other guns (I'm looking at you, Ruger) can be a bear to fieldstrip, you can always count on Glock to give you an easy experience.

gun and bullets

For those of you who aren't already aware, the 42 is Glock's smallest pistol ever made. And because it performs so well, it earns a place among the best 380 pistols. The Glock 42 is not only easy to conceal, but it's also easy to shoot, which makes it your best 380 pistol for ladies, especially beginners.

Top Glock Craftsmanship

I like the Glock 42 for other reasons, too. For one, it's incredibly well-made. It reminds me a lot of my Ruger LCP ii, both in look and feels. As such, it handles like a dream and will undoubtedly serve you well for many years with regular maintenance and upkeep.

Glock 42 Technical Specifications: 


380 Auto




6 Rounds

Barrel Length

3.25 inches

 Overall Length

5.94 inches 


13.76 ounces

During my time shooting the G42, I found it to be a wonderful experience. I felt recoil with every shot fired, and I'm pleased to share with you that it doesn't feel like it's going to break your hands. Unfortunately, I've fired several small guns - and full-size guns for that matter - that had some serious jarring and felt like they were going to shatter my hands like glass.

best glock

A Comfortable Shooting Experience

Some guns manage recoil really well; others don't. This best .380 pistol is one of those guns that belong in the former category. Chalk it up to Glock's stellar craftsmanship. Every part of this gun feels high-quality and secure - exactly what you want from any gun, let alone a concealed carry pistol.

I'd highly recommend the Glock 42 for both home protection and concealed carry. It's got a lovely trigger pull that is incredibly responsive and only requires 5.5 pounds of pressure. Whether you're a veteran gun owner or getting your very first one, the 42 will make a great investment that you're sure to feel comfortable with.

It's worth pointing out, too, that the 42 performs like one of its big brothers. It's got all of the makings of a full-size Glock, just in a tiny body. The end result is a responsive, reactive, accurate, and long-lasting gun that is ideal as a 380 pocket pistol or to make home intruder retreat.

glock at the range

One Tough Gun

Another aspect of this gun that I really appreciate is the polymer frame. Glock made a smart choice by opting for a polymer frame, as it provides tough, long-lasting durability while reducing unnecessary weight from the pistol.

Ultimately, you're getting a versatile little handgun that is incredibly enjoyable to shoot. It unquestionably deserves its rank among the top pocket pistols. Take a look at it; you won't be disappointed.

Personally, I have owned, qualified, and carried this Glock 42 since 2018, equipped with three magazines. I feel comfortable and confident carrying this model on duty as a backup, as well as off duty when I can't carry something larger. The trigger, in my opinion, is top-notch. As for the plastic sights, they still function effectively.

The Glock 42 is an exceptional everyday carry (EDC) firearm. It's incredibly lightweight, accurate, and has virtually no recoil. I recently purchased another 42, although I haven't obtained a holster for it yet. Nevertheless, I can already tell that I'm going to thoroughly enjoy carrying it.

Gun and bullets on the wooden table


  •  The 42 is Glock's smallest pistol ever made
  • Best for concealed carry
  • It's also easy to shoot
  • Every part of this gun feels high-quality and secure


  • I did not find any

 [Best for the Money] 

2. Ruger LCP 380 ACP

My Personal Easy to Carry Pistol

I've had this 380 pistol as my personal concealed carry for quite some time now. I wanted to highlight it due to my extensive experience with it.

Please note that it's not the first gun featured because I believe it's better than any of the other entries.

ruger small

I simply want to start off with a best 380 handgun I feel makes a great investment for anyone serious about protecting themselves. In truth, I don't think this is the perfect pocket pistol as it is - certainly not compared to these here. Only after some "modifying" did I fall in love with the original LCP.

grip of a gun

A Gripping Problem

For example, the grip is essentially non-existent for a guy with larger hands. It's better suited for small hands, making it the best 380 pistol 2023 for ladies.

As you can clearly see from the accompanying image, you don't get much to hold onto, even with the magazine loaded.

However, replacing the stock magazine with an extended mag remedies that issue immediately.

Ruger LCP 380 ACP Technical Specifications: 


380 Auto




6 Rounds

Barrel Length

2.75 inches

 Overall Length

 5.16 inches


10.6 ounces (with mag)

Once I got my replacement magazine in, I felt right at home with the Ruger LCP 380 pistol. And man, do I love the way this gun feels. Everything about it is concealed carry perfection. It has a remarkable balance due to its incredibly lightweight body.

Killer Trigger Pull

If you don't like a long trigger pull the trigger pull here is a walk in the park, as well, ensuring responsive fire with every press. I really appreciate the Crimson Trace Laserguard, as it only adds to the convenience and purpose of this firearm. With it, you'll be able to lock onto your target, even in low lighting and dark environments.

best gun

Having a barrel length less than 3 inches is a nice plus, too. It's a breeze to carry on your person all day without a single issue. As a double-action 380 pistol, I find the original LCP to be exceptionally easy to use. This is a 380 pocket gun through and through, presenting all of the hallmarks you'd expect to find in a pocket pistol.

The slide is incredibly easy to rack, too. In fact, it's easier to rack, thanks to its minute size. And the 380 ACP delivers the stopping power you need for self-defense situations. While it's true that the Ruger LCP 380 ACP has since been updated to the LCP II, I wanted to feature its forebearer due to its affordable price.

A Remarkable Value Pocket Pistol

Of course, it was much more expensive when I invested in it over 10 years ago. Now, you can pick it up for next to nothing (figuratively speaking), making it one of the better deals and values you can sink your money into.

Whether you are familiar with pocket pistols or you're getting your very first one, the Ruger original LCP 380 ACP makes a wonderful investment. You can also explore other options suitable as your first pistol in this article. I have personally owned mine for over a decade, and it continues to perform exceptionally well.

conceal carry

The Ruger LCP 380 ACP is incredibly reliable and instills confidence in its ability to protect you. It is trouble-free, easy to clean and reassemble, and surprisingly accurate despite having fixed sights like similar Bersa Thunder 380.

Additionally, its lightweight nature makes it easy to forget you're carrying a firearm, and the fact that it is a budget-friendly option is the icing on the cake. It's a compact .45 pistol that I recently acquired and has become my go-to for concealed carry.

Furthermore, my wife appreciates its small size, although that is the only aspect she favors. For those looking to enhance their accuracy, a great add-on accessory is a crimson laser sight. This not only improves accuracy but can also serve as a deterrent to potential attackers, with the red dot appearing on their face.


  • Everything about it is concealed carry perfection
  • I find the original LCP to be exceptionally easy to use
  • The slide is incredibly easy to rack
  • It is budget-friendly


  • The grip is essentially non-existent for a guy with larger hands

 [Best for the Balance and Handling] 

3. Sig Sauer P238

Big Bang

Almost just as small and compact as Ruger's original LCP, Sig Sauer's P238 is an incredibly easy-to-conceal 380 that will serve you well. It's a little heavier, weighing in at just a fuzz over 20 ounces.

But it feels great in your hands and delivers the goods at the range.

top 2

I'm really fond of the balance and handling of this gun, as it provides you with confidence when you shoot it. Not only that, but it's easily one of the best 380 pistols 2023 you can buy as far as concealed carry pistols go. As such, it's very pocket-friendly and its mechanics are all in the right place.

The grip safety feels natural and responsive, and the trigger pull is inviting. Guns like this deserve acclaim, and I'm happy to recommend them to you. Thanks to pocket pistols like the Sig Sauer P238, you can trust that you can have a reliable companion in your pocket to keep the bad guys at bay if the situation calls for it.

Sig Sauer P238 Technical Specifications: 


380 Auto




6 +1 Rounds

Barrel Length

2.7 inches

 Overall Length

 5.5 inches


20.5 ounces

Armed and Ready

You've got a well-designed semi-automatic 380 pocket pistol that equips you with a 6-round capacity for any occasion. However, Ruger LCP MAX has a flush-fit magazine with 10-round capacity which is an improvment over the original LCP and LCP 2.

 Not only this the P238 ideal as a pocket carry, but it's got all you need for home defense, as well. And if home defense is your only reason to buy a gun, look at this review.

Although it's a small gun, it's easier to shoot than many other guns I've fired of its size. You can shoot this gun until you're blue in the face and it will keep performing at the highest level. Sig Sauer used stainless steel components throughout, as well as stainless steel on the frame and slide.

silver gun

In short, the Sig P238 is one of the better-made 380 pistols on the market, offering reliable protection for years to come. Proper cleaning and maintenance are essential, as with any firearm, to ensure its longevity.

As evident from numerous positive user, including my personal experience, the P238 is a concealed carry favorite. Its easy concealment and user-friendly firing mechanism make it a joy to handle. Despite its compact size, the gun exhibits minimal recoil, allowing for precise and accurate shots.

The P238's excellent sights and ergonomic design further enhance its performance. With a flawless track record and impressive reliability, this best 380 handgun is a top choice for daily carry. After firing 300 rounds without a single misfire, I can confidently say that the Sig P238 has exceeded my expectations. It's simply an awesome gun that leaves no room for complaints.


  • It delivers the goods at the range
  • It will provide you with plenty of protection for years to come
  • Sig Sauer used stainless steel components throughout, as well as stainless steel on the frame and slide
  • It is one of the best 380 pistols you can buy for concealed carry


  • I did not find any

For the Secret Service Agent

As you are likely well aware, a 380 isn't the most powerful caliber you can own. On the contrary, there are a plethora of other, more powerful, options you can invest in to protect yourself. With that said, a 380 will do some serious harm in the right hands and especially at close range.

smith and wesson

But you need a quality firearm to deliver that 380 round, as well as your own proficiency in handling the gun. This is where Smith & Wesson's Bodyguard 380 comes into play. As a Smith & Wesson, you can count on putting your money toward a reliable firearm that is made to the highest standard.

As 380 pistols go, Smith & Wesson produced one of the smallest 380 pistol options - the Bodyguard. And when if you get the chance to shoot this one, you'll see what I mean. There are a few things that I really like about this pistol. For starters, it's got the type of design and construction that I appreciate.

Smith & Wesson Bodyguard 380 Technical Specifications: 


380 Auto




6+1 Rounds

Barrel Length

2.75 inches

 Overall Length

5.3 inches


12.5 ounces

Single-Action MIA

As you can clearly see, it's very similar to the Ruger LCP or Glock 42. Everything is tight and compact, which is precisely what makes a quality concealed carry a weapon. It's double-action-only, so fans of single-action will need to look elsewhere.

As you can tell from the provided image, the Bodyguard suffers from the same problem I had with my Ruger LCP, namely, the short grip. Thankfully, this is an easy fix with the help of an extended magazine. Pop one in and you'll be good to go if you have big hands.

Shooters with smaller hands will likely dig the Bodyguard 380 just the way it is. Either way, extended mag or not, this gun handles like a champ and is incredibly versatile. I love its lightweight body and ease-of-use.

Accuracy Excellence

It's also one of the more accurate 380 pistols I've encountered. The trigger can take some getting used to, but once you become acclimated with this 380, you should feel confident in your shooting ability. The magazine release and slide release are nicely positioned, too, giving you an accessible, convenient setup that works for you, not against you.


If only all gun manufacturers designed their firearms with this line of thinking. But I digress...

The Smith & Wesson Bodyguard is simply another instant classic from one of the most recognizable and reliable gun makers in the world. Considering its price, this is one .380 pistol that you might not want to pass up. I've been carrying this pistol daily since 2017, and once you get used to it, it proves to be a very capable and shootable gun.

Shooting a small gun like this is a great experience. Although the long heavy trigger takes a little getting used to, it performs quite well once you adapt. As my everyday carry (EDC), I love this gun and have had no feeding problems with it. I find it to be snappy, but still a good pocket gun. If you're looking for easy concealment, I highly recommend it.


  • A reliable firearm that is made to the highest standard
  • It has a great design and construction
  • A quality concealed carry weapon
  • Shooters with smaller hands will likely dig the Bodyguard 380 just the way it is


  • Not suitable for people with big hands

The Importance of Self-Defense

As I've just detailed, the need for a self-defense weapon is at an all-time high, and if you're like a lot of intelligent people, you are fed up with what you're seeing and aren't willing to take any chances with your life. And if you have a family to protect, the stakes are even higher.

As such, it's time to consider a concealed carry pistol for self-defense. Well, I've got just the ticket for you. I have scoured multiple sources to bring you what I believe are the best 380 gun options for defending yourself and your loved ones.

Everything You Need

One of the best handguns you can buy for concealed carry is the 380. It's incredibly small, compact, versatile, and lightweight - everything you could possibly want from a self-defense weapon. Not only that, but these pistols bring plenty of firepower to the stage if need be.

Commonly referred to as the “pocket rocket," the 380 pistol doesn't mess around. You're going to really like what you see here, so let's get right to it.

Pocket Pistols Galore

Well, you certainly have a lot to think about. Do you have larger hands and need a pocket 380 that has a full-sized grip? Or are you cool with getting a 380 that might require you to invest in an extended mag? From my experience, it's sometimes better to shell out the extra dough for an extended mag.

Sure, it's another investment. But pocket guns like the Ruger LCP 380 and Glock's 42 guns are some of the best 380 pistols 2023 you can get for the money. Even though you're paying for an additional accessory to make the gun safer and more comfortable, you could still be saving compared to what some of the other pocket pistols cost.

In any event, I hope you found this article helpful in your quest to find the right gun to protect yourself with. Take your time researching your options and consider the benefits that each pistol will provide. In the end, all that really matters is that you invest in a reliable 380 that you feel comfortable shooting.


1. What is the best 380 pistol 2023?

The best 380 pistol 2023 is the Glock 42. This gun is the smallest pistol ever produced by Glock and in addition to being simple to hide, the Glock 42 is simple to use. This gun feels really sturdy and high-quality throughout, which is what you want from any firearm, let alone a concealed carry handgun.

2. What are the best 380 handguns 2023?

The best 380 handguns 2023 are:

  1. Glock 42
  2. Ruger LCP 380 ACP
  3. Sig Sauer P238
  4. Smith & Wesson Bodyguard 380

3. Is a 380 handgun powerful enough for self-defense?

Yes, a 380 handgun is powerful enough for self-defense. If the shooter shoots well, the 380 pistol can be useful in real-life defense scenarios.

4. What is the best 380 pistol full size?

There are no any full-sized pistols chambered in .380 ACP. The largest ones that come to mind of are the Beretta 84, CZ83, and Glock 25 (which is not legal for import to the US). The whole point of .380 is that it enables small size compact pistols so looking for a .380 pistol full size makes no sense.