In the 24 hours since I spotted the piece on mygunculture.com about the best 15 Christmas gifts for gun-loving girls the theme has been picked up by other gun sites. Not only has it been picked up but the 15-item theme has stuck more than once, and because I was entirely unable to look away, I went ahead and took a peek at the various lists. The theme I referred to in my first Christmas list piece has stayed true: every list is riddled with floral, pink, sparkly items. I was even a bit shocked to see a paisley-patterned range bag, and because, as you all know by now, I cannot simply walk away from these things, I decided to make my own list. Want to get your gun-loving woman a gift? Try one of these.
- Gloves. Not just any gloves but good-quality trigger gloves, some that fit well, allow for a nice, positive grip, and keep her hands warm – and all without impeding her ability to shoot. That means they can’t interfere with squeezing the trigger, pushing the mag release, racking the slide – you get the idea. Yes, these wonderful gloves exist, and although they tend to be in men’s sizes you can easily figure out which ones will fit her. Do a Google search to find out how a specific brand judges size if it isn’t listed on the item’s website. Many gloves list size according to how wide your knuckles are. Mine are four inches, making me a medium in most men’s gloves. Remember, men’s gloves are sized differently than women’s so don’t assume you know what size to get based on a pair of women’s gloves your other half already has (in women’s gloves I’m always looking for the largest-possible sizes). These gloves are basic but surprisingly comfortable: Oakley soft gloves
- Ear Protection. This might seem obvious, but it’s not. There are so many kinds of ear protection out there from the bulky to the svelte, from plain plastic to electronic, and everyone has a preference. That said I’ve never known anyone who didn’t benefit from a quality set of electronic ear protection. If you’re worried she won’t like it, well, hang on to the receipt. Check out: Pro Ears
- Range Bag. I own multiple range bags, and I wish I had more. One is for the days I only want to take my shotguns out and another is geared for handguns. One is packed for reviewing guns with all the necessary tools and another is loaded for personal fun time at my favorite outdoor spot. You get the idea. It’s nice to have more than one range bag so you aren’t forced to dump your gear out and repack it every time you want to shoot different guns or work on various skills. On top of that the really well-made bags are expensive and she may not be willing to buy one for herself, making a gift the only way it’s ever going to come into her possession. There are lots of options out there; 5.11 is just one of many possibilities: Range bags. A sub-heading here is rifle cases whether soft-sided or hard-shell, I have quite a few and love them all. And if you really want to get into it, get her a Pelican case.
- Ammo cases. Yes, really. You know those plastic trays you see stacked on the shelves at Gander Mountain and Cabelas? They’re not just for reloaders. When we have cases of loose ammo the last thing we want to do is be forced to dump some in a plastic baggie or rustle up an old 50-round tray, complete with disintegrating box, to get a portion of it to the range. Those neat little plastic cases are a great way to transport ammo in a box that won’t fall apart, accidentally open, or otherwise cause us trouble. And they’re cheap, so get more than one. Think stocking stuffer…think fill-it-with-ammo-before-you-wrap-it. (And consider some ammo cans while you’re at it, they’re awesome.) Cabelas has a nice selection: Ammo cases at Cabelas
- Accessories. No, I don’t mean the kind we wear in our ears and on our wrists, I mean the kind we use to improve our guns. Custom grips, slide plates, Pearce Grip Extensions (personally speaking, I love those for my compact handguns), the list goes on. Before you pick up any accessories for her guns, though, make sure it’s something she really wants. And unless you’re absolutely positive she wouldn’t mind your putting it on her gun yourself, don’t do it. Wrap the accessory all by its lonesome and put it under the tree. I once had someone decide to add accessories to a brand-new handgun as a “surprise” and while they were at it, they loaded my brand-new, never-before-touched mags. Don’t do it. Leave the installation to her unless you are truly positive she won’t mind – that, or wait for her to ask. There are a lot of sites out there for this, but if she loves Glock, check out: www.rockyourglock.com/
- Components. Who wouldn’t be ecstatic to have a new, better-quality trigger or a smoother-functioning bolt carrier group? Again, this requires some knowledge of what she’s looking for and what she already has. You don’t want to offer her a new trigger for a gun that already has her dream trigger. Do your homework, and, again, don’t get too gung-ho with installing it for her.
- Magazines. As time goes by they just keep getting more expensive and not once in my life have I ever looked at my collection and said “Well, I have enough mags now…” There’s always room for more. Brownie points if you find unique, high-capacity mags (a certain 100-round drum for Glocks comes to mind although, sadly, it’s only being made for 9mm right now). Check out Brownells for a decent mag selection: Mags from Brownells
- Holsters. Although holsters are all about personal preferences they’re also about trying new things. You won’t know if you like it if you’ve never tried it. Or maybe they already have a holster for IWB carry but it’s rather cheaply made, meaning a high-quality version would be greatly appreciated. Also, there are some holsters that would be nice to have but we don’t spend money on them because we’d use them only on rare occasions. Think drop-leg holsters, shoulder holsters…they’re great to have but since they aren’t going to be for regular use not everyone is willing to buy them. That doesn’t meant they don’t want them, though, and that’s where gifts come in handy. Do not, however, attempt to force someone to use a particular kind of holster by disguising it as a gift. Use your knowledge of a person’s carry habits and needs to choose the right holster. Take a look at these high-quality holsters: Galco
- Cleaning supplies, lube, etc. Drop some Frog Lube in their stocking. Buy some bore-specific brushes. Get them a nice, big pack of cloth cleaning squares. Enough said. If you’re going the Frog Lube route: Frog Lube And if you want bore brushes: Otisec Bore Brushes
- Concealed-carry jacket. This one might surprise you, but I love mine. A good-quality concealed-carry jacket with zippers in the right spots for quick access to guns and pockets for spare mags or speed loaders is a fantastic gift. There are quite a few versions on the market, so make sure you take their actual needs into account rather than just buying the simplest or most awesome one you can find. This Tru-Spec tactical jacket is one I’ve gotten good use out of: Tru-Spec Tactical Jacket
- Shooting mat. If this one surprises you, it shouldn’t. Any shooter who spends time with rifles is likely to want something to use during time spent prone, and a really nice mat is a fantastic gift. Just a week ago I destroyed a brand-new and very warm shirt thanks to an afternoon prone with a truly awesome rifle. A good mat is a nice thing to have, and in this case I have a suggestion. There are several out there I like, but this one by Blackhawk caught my eye: Blackhawk Stalker Shooting Mat
- Ammunition. You knew I couldn’t do a gift list without ammo, right? When all else fails, buy ammo. Just make sure you know what calibers she really needs and/or wants and if there’s a particular type she’s after, that’s even better. You can never have too much ammo. Check out: AmmoForSale.com
- Optics. My dream optics are expensive enough I’m pretty confident I’ll never, ever buy them. If you know she wants a particular scope for her rifle and you’re in the position to buy it, do. Nothing says “I love you, and I want you to be able to kill me from a distance” like a spectacular scope for her favorite gun. My favorite is a little pricey, but here you go: Night Force
- Range membership. Having a range to call home is a wonderful thing, and if you decide to go this route be absolutely positive it’s a range she likes. All ranges (and range staff) are not created equal, so you’d better be sure the place you choose is one where she’ll be comfortable, welcomed, and safe. And just because you like a particular range doesn’t mean she will, so make sure before making that investment. When in doubt, make her a nice gift card and promise to take her around the various options until she finds one where she’d like to become a member, and then buy it for her.
- Guns. Oh, yes, guns. Handguns, rifles, shotguns…guns, guns, guns. Anyone who truly knows me understands the gift of a gun tops all others. And if she’s a true gun lover, she’ll be ecstatic to get a new gun, too. Make sure it’s one she really wants and don’t forget to grab at least one box of ammo to go with it.
In the spirit of several other lists I’ll stop at 15 items. I could easily go on and include bipods, tactical vests, battle belts, chronographs…okay, that last one might just be me, but you get the point. The links I included are reference points, after all, it’s pretty close to Christmas, so if you want an actual item to hand her on Christmas morning you’d better run to your closest gun store to pick up the perfect gun-related gift. Of course, you can make an online order, print out proof of said order, and slip it into an envelope to be opened on Christmas day.
You might notice there aren’t any frilly, pink, glittery items on my list. In fact, it probably looks an awful lot like your personal Christmas list. That’s my entire point: I may be a girl, but I want the same quality gear you do, and I’d prefer it in black or coyote, depending on the item. And while there are those among us who do like to have more feminine range gear, there are plenty of us who don’t. If you’re trying to find the perfect gift for the gun-loving woman in your life, it’s simple, really: just get the kind of gear or gun you’d be envious of, and you’ve most likely done well. Merry Christmas, guys, now go do some last-minute gun shopping.