The Best Deep Concealment Carry Guns

in Authors, Concealed Carry/EDC, Gun Reviews, Handguns, Travis Pike

Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

You’d think concealed-carry guns would all be pretty typical, right? You’d be dead wrong. The gun you conceal carry is a personal choice you have to make. For some people, the Glock 34 is a great concealed-carry gun. For most of us, it’s a bit too much. In the concealed carry world, we have compact guns like the Glock 19, we have single stack 9s like the Walther PPS, we have micro compacts like the P365, and so many more. Then, we have another interesting genre, the genre of deep concealment handguns. 

Deep concealment handguns are their own separate genre of firearms that include a wide variety of calibers as well as a multitude of operational methods. We have automatics and revolvers, centerfire and rimfire calibers, and more. Deep concealment pistols are designed to be incredibly compact and very easy to carry concealed. 

These guns are often ultra-small, fairly flat, and in smaller-than-average calibers. Deep concealment guns are meant to prioritize concealment and not necessarily firepower. They typically have less-than-average capacity, a short sight radius, and not much in the way of anything beyond going bang. 

For some, they are a daily carry gun, but for others, they are an occasional option when nothing else works. Deep concealment guns are another tool in the box, and I think most concealed carriers would benefit from having at least one deep concealment pistol in their concealed carry rotation. 

The Best Deep Concealment Guns

The KelTec P32

If you want a teeny tiny option that’s affordable and lightweight, then KelTec has you covered. The Keltec P32 weighs only 6.6 ounces empty, and when fully loaded with seven rounds of 32 ACP, it still weighs less than 10 ounces. It’s a mere .75 inches wide and only a hair over 5 inches long. It’s tiny, and while it might not be the smallest gun on the market, it is one of the very lightest semi-autos. 

The Best Deep Concealment Carry Guns

‘It fits right into your pocket and disappears. The P32 also works well with traditional holster types like IWB, and in that role, it’s nearly invisible. Heck, with the right holster, it would fit right into your back pocket. When carried on the ankle, it won’t weigh you down or bulge. It even fits in a lady’s clutch. 

While the gun’s tiny, the .32 ACP chambering offers a low level of recoil, and it’s easy to control. It won’t slap its way out of your hand or make you feel like you’ve completely lost control of the gun. The P32 has some dinky sights, but they are useable. It’s not much, but it’s a great deep concealment gun. 

Ruger LCP 2 – A Great Deep Concealment Option

The Ruger LCP 2 takes a page out of the P32’s book. It’s light, small, and very easy to conceal. The Ruger LCP 2 improves on the LCP design and offers a much better trigger than most other pocket guns. While it’s still a double-action-only design, it’s not necessarily a long or heavy trigger. 

The Best Deep Concealment Carry Guns

The LCP 2 comes in both .380 ACP and .22LR. Both would be a great choice for a deep concealment carry gun. The .380 ACP option offers a bigger bullet and a more reliable ignition method. The .22LR offers hardly any recoil and ten rounds in a very small gun. It’s a personal choice, to be sure. I tend to prefer the .22LR for its low recoil and ease of use with a single hand. 

The LCP 2 series comes from Ruger, so while it might not be fancy, you know it’s a gun that puts in work. While KelTec occasionally has QC issues, Ruger tends to be a bit more reliable, and they still tend to be affordable. 

Beretta 21A Bobcat

The Beretta 21A Bobcat might not be the smallest gun, but it’s a dang fine deep concealment pistol. The little Beretta is 4.9 inches long and weighs 11.5 ounces. It is slightly thicker than most at 1.1 inches wide. The little gun packs seven rounds of .22LR and features the Beretta tip-up barrel design, which makes it a snap to load a round directly into the chamber. 

The Best Deep Concealment Carry Guns

The big benefit of using the Bobcat is the fact it’s a DA/SA gun. Rimfire rounds are not the most reliable form of ignition. A DA/SA design makes it easy to get the opportunity to fire again and get a second strike in case a round doesn’t ignite on the first strike. 

A nice, long, and heavy trigger does give some comfort when pocket-carrying, but it’s also nice to have the option for a lighter single-action trigger. The Bobcat does require full-powered ammo to function, but if you’re using the gun for self-defense, I’m betting it’s loaded with full-powered loads. 

NAA Micro Revolver

Let’s say you’re stuck in a situation where you are wearing a Speedo and need to carry a gun. You might feel like you don’t have any real options. Or at least one that holds more than a single round. You’d be incorrect. The NAA Micro Revolver is a great go-to for the deepest concealment possible. These guns come in a variety of rimfire calibers, including .22LR and .22 Magnum. 

The Best Deep Concealment Carry Guns

The NAA Micro Revolvers come in a variety of sizes. Some are seemingly novelties, but the standard models are quite capable of concealed carry and deep concealment. They are micro-sized and hold a mere five rounds of .22LR. The plain model can disappear anywhere. The addition of a folding knife-style grip makes it easy to pocket carry and secures the trigger. It also adds a respectable grip to the gun for easy handling. 

The downside is the fact that the sights are basically a good idea and not much more than that. This is a point-and-shoot firearm. My big hands make it almost impossible to even try and use the front sight when shooting. Luckily, the recoil of the .22LR version isn’t bad, or this thing would be useless. It’s my last for deep concealment, but it is an option. 

Tiny Deep Concealment Semi-Auto: Seecamp LWS 32

If you want the smallest semi-auto pistol by a small margin, the Seecamp LWS 32 is the route to take. It’s not the lightest semi-auto, but it’s most certainly the smallest dimensionally. At 11.5 ounces, the all-metal gun is a bit heavier than the P32 and LCP. The Seecamp series of pistols are only 4.25 inches long overall and .86 inches wide. It’s micro-sized and packs easily in your pocket. 

The Best Deep Concealment Carry Guns

The guns come in .32 ACP and .380 ACP, but the .380 ACP is a real mule. It kicks hard and fiercely and constantly tries to fight its way out of your hand. I’d suggest the .32 ACP model. The gun uses a delayed blowback design that has a novel chamber ring delay system. It helps ensure the gun is controllable and soft recoiling. 

The Seecamp LWS 32 is a double-action-only, hammer-fired gun. It lacks any form of sights, and the magazine release is a European heel style. Great care was taken to smooth out the corners and prevent the gun from hanging up on the draw. While it’s tough to hit targets beyond seven yards, it’s a reliable and easy-toting pocket piece. 

S&W Model 642

Finally, we’ll get to the big boy on this list. The S&W 642 is easily the biggest gun on this list, and it’s still a snub-nose revolver. The S&W Model 642 is a J-frame, .38 Special revolver that is a classic of the concealed carry market. It’s big, bigger than every other gun on this list, but still easy to conceal. The round nature of revolvers makes them perfect for pocket carry, and they tuck away quite nicely. 

The Best Deep Concealment Carry Guns

READ MORE: 2023s Best Pocket Pistols for Deep Concealment

The S&W Model 642 is a very lightweight gun at only 15 ounces. You’re also packing a .38 Special, which has long proven itself. I’d suggest some good wadcutters to ensure good penetration. The hammer is enclosed, so it’s a snag-free draw. Guns like this conceal easily on the ankle, in an IWB rig, and as mentioned in the pocket. 

The S&W Model 642 isn’t the easiest shooter, especially if you load +P rounds into it. This can make it a handful. A standard defensive round is good enough to get the job done, so I wouldn’t get too crazy. The J-frame is a classic carry gun, and it’s been a choice for deep concealment for quite some time for a reason. 

Pack It Out

Deep concealment guns offer you a tool that can be carried in just about any attire or situation. While guns like the P365 are quite convenient, they can still be a bit big for concealed carry in certain situations. That’s why everyone needs a good deep concealment pistol, and these are my favorites above. 

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  • Jim November 12, 2023, 9:47 pm

    Everyone just forget about the Kahr PM9? I’ve been carrying that, or a naa 22mag pocket clip edition, or a p365 daily for 12 years. I prefer the pm9 the most. Compact, light weight, holds 6+1, and with a 7 rd extended mag in a neomag in the pocket. In my opinion that’s as close to perfect for deep conceal carry you can get.

  • Arch Stanton October 31, 2023, 9:10 pm

    The Beretta 3032 Tomcat is a better option that the Bobcat, being a primer fired .32 ACP vs. the rimfire .22 LR. Also, perhaps THE BEST deep concealment pistol of all time is missing from this list: The Browning Baby in .25 ACP. This semi auto pistol is so small it looks like a meme of a gun. *Almost* fits into an Altoids tin.

  • Bobby31 October 30, 2023, 9:43 pm

    I’ve been concealed carrying the S&W 638 (similar to the 642) for over nine years. I carry it in my right front pocket.

  • Dan the Gunsmith October 30, 2023, 2:48 pm

    I wouldn’t be inclined to carry any of these. Imagine a guy bursting in to rob my store, and I pull out a single-action .22LR mini-revolver that’s as big as two of my fingers? They’d be laughing at my funeral. I work at a LGS, and I won’t recommend to anyone anything smaller than a P365, Hellcat, or Smith EZ.

  • Michael Keim October 30, 2023, 2:25 pm

    I have a Ruger LCP II in
    22 caliber. I have 4 magazines. This gun is a piece of crap. I get multiple failures to feed in every magazines using any brand or type of ammo.

    • Kb31416 October 31, 2023, 8:51 pm

      I have an LCP in 380 and I carry it daily as I have for about 10 years. It eats everything that I feed it, hard ball and Hornady JHPs.
      Not much, but 7 second chances if things go south. Expected engagement range is single digit feet, inches if I can arrange it.
      First carry gun was a Ruger LCR in.38, but after things went south in 2020 with mass riots and civil disorder, 5 second chances were not enough.

  • Tommy Barrios October 30, 2023, 1:34 pm

    I dunno, kind of surprised they don’t have my little Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9 on that list because it’s pretty small but pretty damn deadly and effective from what I’ve seen so far, and you can’t even see it anywhere on me when I’m carrying it in my IWB holster!
    I agree with everything that they put up there as an effective DCG, even the .22LR which many people don’t realize just how deadly that round is in .22 Long Rifle Hollow Point, more people dead from that than any other from what I hear!

  • Mike in a Truck October 30, 2023, 12:46 pm

    I own all the handguns mentioned. There is one ‘tho that is always on me our close at hand..even in the shower. It’s my NAA 22 Magnum. Spare me the lecture. When I walk out the door a more substantial handgun is added as primary but the NAA is always on me. Always.

    • LJ October 31, 2023, 11:02 am

      Same here. I’ve been carrying at least one NAA 22 mag in a pocket for over 40 years. I own two. As a GSSF member, I have a wide assortment of Glocks that I can carry, depending on the clothing I’m wearing, temp, etc., but no matter what the little NAA is always with me, even if I just walk to the mail box. Another fine little pocket gun comparable to the Seecamp, but not mentioned in this article, are the well made NAA Guardian’s in .32 or .380.

      Are there better self defense rounds than a .22LR or .22MAG? Absolutely! But one thing is for sure, I wouldn’t want to get gut-shot with either one. It’s going to hurt like hell, if it don’t kill you, and no doubt send the recipient to the hospital to get it dug out of their guts, and the hospital is going to HAVE to get the cops involved.

  • Mark Wynn October 30, 2023, 12:05 pm

    Suggest consider the Ruger lc9s over the LCP2. Not that much difference in size. Still fits in my (large) pockets, in a sticky holster for safety, which also accommodates a green laser. All lc9s surfaces are “melted.” Started with the lc380 but found the 9mm still easy enough to control, as I have big hands, firm grip, and visit an indoor range often. Next purchase, a silencer for my Ruger 9mm carbine. Any suggestions?

  • Kane October 30, 2023, 9:50 am

    I have a NAA micro but just as gadjet gun. I have a Ruger LCP Max but do NOT like going smaller than my Ruger P365. Actually, I mostly CC a Ruger LCR.

    • Kane November 4, 2023, 9:40 pm

      I mean’t Sig P365

  • Grumpy 49 October 30, 2023, 9:43 am

    While it seems everyone suggests the S&W 642, for many users the 638 is a better choice. Because of the shrouded hammer, the 638 can also be used in Single Action, with a much lighter trigger pull, while still offering the DA function. It also uses many of the same holsters as its stable mates. As a “Senior Citizen” shooter, I also suggest doing some action work, as a little polishing of the internals, and some quality lube, is a viable option, for any self-defense handgun. IF you are not so mechanically talented, doing a “bubba gunsmith” job is the worst thing to do to any firearm.

  • Chris Stevens October 30, 2023, 8:31 am

    I have the Beretta 21 in 25 ACP. I have experienced enough rimfire duds in my life that I’ll eliminate them for use in any kind of self-defense application.

  • Rex Dickerson October 30, 2023, 7:38 am

    My deep concealment arm is the hammer fired Ruger LCPII in .380. It’s a terrific upgrade from my well worn Taurus PT 738 TCP. My hands are average size and with after market mag extensions, the LCP is very comfortable to shoot and the trigger is excellent!

    • Kb31416 October 31, 2023, 8:58 pm

      Agreed 100%. My daily carry gun is an LCP in 380. Hardly know it’s there, 7 second chances, plus 6 more in a spare mag, all in a Recluse holster.

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