Carrying While Female – Lessons Learned
April 18th, 2019
3 minute read
The number of women who are carrying a gun every day continues to grow, and with that comes a set of questions that need answering, such as whether it’s necessary to also carry an extra magazine. The short answer is that you probably need one — but before you decide, there are a few things to consider.
Mag Carrier Pros and Cons
The most obvious benefit of having a mag carrier is that it means you’ll have more ammo available on your person. Women often — but not always — carry single-stack firearms, and that means having less than ten rounds. With a single-stack typically holding an average of seven rounds plus one, the question you need to ask yourself is whether those eight rounds will be enough to stop a threat.
If a firearm is part of your everyday carry, or EDC kit, you’re already attuned to the fact that life-or-death situations do happen — and they don’t follow any rules. The neat and tidy fantasy of only needing one or two rounds to handle an attacker is often just that: a fantasy. Sometimes you need more, and just like firearms in general, it’s better to have and not need, than need and not have. That holds true regardless of whether you’re carrying the latest XD-S or a full-size double-stack.
The downside of a mag carrier is also fairly obvious — it’s another thing you’ll be carrying every day. In addition, you’ll need to go through the same process in choosing one that you use for a holster. Things like retention, ease of use, and capacity will all come into play, and you’ll need to decide what works for you. While many people prefer to have their mag carrier match their holster, the truth is that if you’re carrying concealed, function is more important than aesthetics.
How to Carry It
Tossing an extra magazine in your purse or pocket isn’t going to cut it; it might be convenient for now, but you will think differently if you ever need to reload in a hurry. You’ll need your extra mag to be somewhere you can get to immediately when needed, and that means you’ll need a carrier for it — probably on your belt, which also happens to be the safest place to carry your firearm.
Be sure to train with your mag carrier just like your weapon. Practice getting to your extra ammo and reloading in a variety of situations, including ones where your heart is pounding, and your respirations are up. Fumbling for another magazine in a self-defense situation is not an optimal scenario; you’ll need to train that muscle memory long before you ever need it.
CCW for Women, Generally
I looked at carrying a spare mag in this article. If you are looking for a more general article, I recommend reading Bridget Fabel’s article on how to conceal carry as a woman. She talks about different modes of carry with her Springfield Armory Hellcat, though the information and techniques apply to any firearm you rely on.
I suggest trying different styles of carrying a pistol and finding the one that works best for you and your needs.
Only you can decide whether you want to carry an extra magazine. If you choose to do so, however, make sure it is accessible and that you’ve trained with it just as extensively as you train with your firearm. You are training with your firearm, right?