Smith & Wesson Shield Plus Concealed Carry Review

Smith & Wesson Shield Plus: Concealed Carry Review

The Smith & Wesson Shield Plus is a top contender in the concealed carry arena that blends high capacity with a slim profile, making it a prime choice for concealed carry.

This compact powerhouse is renowned for its reliability, ergonomic design, and the ability to hold more rounds than you’d expect from a handgun of its size. With unique features such as an enhanced grip texture and a crisp, light trigger, the Shield Plus stands out in the crowded market of subcompact firearms.

In this review, we’ll dive deep into the nuances of the Shield Plus, examining its specs, performance, and overall suitability for concealed carry. 

Read Ultimate Guide To Concealed Carry

Shield Plus Features and Specs

Smith & Wesson Shield Plus
Smith & Wesson Shield Plus
  • Comes with (2) 13 round magazines and (1) 10 round flush fit magazine
  • Features an optimal 18-degree grip angle for natural point of aim
  • Tritium Night Front & Rear Sights
  • Flat faced trigger
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The Smith & Wesson Shield Plus is a marvel of modern engineering, packing an impressive array of features into a compact frame designed for concealed carry. Below, we detail the key specifications and features that make the Shield Plus stand out from its competitors.

Shield Plus Specs

Caliber9mm, 30 Super Carry
Capacity10+1, 13+1
Weight (Unloaded)20.2 oz
Barrel Length3.1 inches

Key Features

The Shield Plus stands out for its smart design and superior specs, featuring a 9mm caliber for the perfect balance of power and control, making it ideal for personal defense. Its 3.1-inch barrel ensures both concealability and accuracy, while its slim, optimized dimensions enhance everyday carry comfort and reduce printing. Weighing just over 20 ounces unloaded, it remains stable and easy to control, appealing to both new and seasoned shooters.

The firearm offers flexible capacity with 10+1 or 13+1 round options, supported by two magazines for either enhanced concealability or improved grip and control. High-visibility sights aid quick aiming in various light conditions, with options for upgrades to suit low-light situations.

Key features include an improved trigger for precise, rapid firing, and high-strength construction for durability. The grip’s enhanced texture ensures a firm hold and control, highlighting the Shield Plus’s commitment to quality and functionality in demanding scenarios.

Key Feature Summary

  • Versatile magazine capacity with 10+1 or 13+1 options for tailored carry preference
  • Includes two magazines: a flush-fit 10-round and an extended 13-round for increased grip and control
  • High-visibility sights for efficient target acquisition in various lighting conditions, with options for steel, white-dot, or upgraded night sights
  • Improved trigger system with tactile and audible reset for enhanced shooting experience
  • Built with high-strength materials and advanced manufacturing for durability
  • Enhanced grip texture for a secure hold and superior control

Pros and Cons


  • High Capacity: Offers a choice between 10+1 or 13+1 rounds, providing flexibility in firepower for its compact size.
  • Superior Ergonomics: The slim profile and enhanced grip texture ensure comfort and control, making it ideal for prolonged carry and use.
  • Advanced Sights: Equipped with high-visibility sights, facilitating quick and accurate target acquisition; optional night sights enhance low-light performance.
  • Improved Trigger System: Features a tactile and audible reset, significantly improving the shooting experience with precise shot placement.


  • Price Point: May be higher than some competitors, making it a significant investment for some buyers.
  • Recoil Management: For new shooters or those sensitive to recoil, the compact size might present a challenge in managing recoil effectively.

Design and Ergonomics

The Shield Plus excels in design and ergonomics, offering a durable, sleek, and user-friendly experience for concealed carry. Its slim profile and professional finish ensure easy concealment and a comfortable all-day carry.

The grip is engineered for superior comfort and control, featuring an enhanced texture that provides a secure hold, aiding in stability and accuracy during use. Customization is straightforward, with accessory rails for tactical additions and options for grip modifications, allowing users to personalize the handgun to their preferences.

Overall, this firearm combines quality construction with practical ergonomics, making it an ideal choice for those seeking a reliable and adaptable concealed carry firearm.

Performance and Reliability

Sheidl Plus Performance and Reliability

The Shield Plus stands out for its exceptional performance and reliability, qualities that are paramount for a concealed carry firearm. From personal experience and extensive testing, this gun consistently demonstrates accuracy and dependability under a variety of conditions.

Accuracy and Handling: Its compact design does not compromise on accuracy. Thanks to its well-designed ergonomics and high-visibility sights, it offers precise shot placement right out of the box. The grip texture and balanced weight contribute to steady handling, even in rapid fire scenarios or under stress. I shoot this gun better than most in its class size.

Reliability: This handgun has proven itself to be incredibly reliable. Whether it’s routine range practice, defensive shooting drills, or carried daily for personal defense, the Shield Plus functions flawlessly with a wide range of ammunition types. Its consistent performance, even after thousands of rounds, reassures the user of its capability to function when it matters most.

Ammunition Flexibility: One of the noteworthy aspects of this gun is its flexibility with different types of ammunition. It feeds, fires, and ejects everything from standard FMJ training rounds to various hollow points designed for self-defense without issue. This versatility is crucial for a carry gun, ensuring it will perform across the spectrum of potential use cases.

Durability and Maintenance: Its construction with high-strength materials stands up to the rigors of daily carry and extensive use. Maintenance is straightforward, and the handgun is designed for easy field-stripping and cleaning, ensuring it remains in top working condition with minimal effort.

Overall Experience: The improved trigger system, with its tactile and audible reset, enhances the shooting experience by allowing for faster follow-up shots and greater control over shot placement. This, combined with the handgun’s solid construction and reliability, makes the Shield Plus a top choice for anyone seeking a compact, high-capacity firearm for concealed carry.

Comparisons to Similar Handguns

Shield Plus Comparisons to Similar Handguns

When comparing this gun to other handguns in the compact and subcompact market, it’s important to assess performance, size, and price to understand what sets it apart from its competitors. Models like the Glock 43X and the Sig Sauer P365 are often considered alongside the Shield Plus for individuals looking for a reliable concealed carry option.

Glock 43X vs. Smith & Wesson Shield Plus

  • Capacity: The Shield Plus offers a versatile magazine capacity with options for 10+1 or 13+1 rounds, surpassing the Glock 43X’s standard 10+1 capacity.
  • Ergonomics: Both handguns are designed for comfort and ease of carry, but the Shield Plus provides an enhanced grip texture and a more pronounced grip angle for better control and comfort.
  • Price: Price points vary, but the Shield Plus and Glock 43X are generally competitive, with variations depending on retailer and specific model features.

Sig Sauer P365 vs. Smith & Wesson Shield Plus

  • Capacity: The Sig Sauer P365 matches the Shield Plus in capacity, offering models with similar high-capacity options in a compact frame.
  • Size: Both the P365 and Shield Plus are designed for concealability, but the P365 may offer a slight advantage in overall compactness and weight.
  • Trigger and Sights: While both handguns boast high-quality triggers and sights, preferences may vary. The Shield Plus’s improved trigger system and tactile reset might appeal to those prioritizing shot precision and control.

What Sets the Shield Plus Apart:

  • Reliability: It has built a reputation for its reliability and durability, a critical factor for personal defense.
  • Ergonomics and Control: The ergonomic design, particularly the grip texture and balance, makes it stand out for shooters who value comfort and control.
  • Flexibility and Versatility: With its magazine capacity options and excellent performance across a variety of ammunition types, it offers flexibility for users to tailor their carry to their needs.

While the Glock 43X and Sig Sauer P365 are formidable competitors in the concealed carry market, the Smith & Wesson Shield Plus distinguishes itself with its high-capacity options, superior ergonomics, and reliable performance. These characteristics make it a compelling choice for anyone seeking a dependable, comfortable, and versatile concealed carry firearm.

Concealed Carry Considerations

Read Best Holsters For M&P Shield Plus

When evaluating the Smith & Wesson Shield Plus for concealed carry, several factors stand out that underscore its suitability for everyday carry. This firearm has been designed with the specific needs of concealed carriers in mind, balancing size, capacity, and comfort in a way that makes it an excellent choice for personal defense.

Compact Size and Concealability: The Shield Plus’s compact frame and slim profile are key advantages for concealed carry. Its dimensions allow for easy concealment under various types of clothing without significant printing, making it a versatile choice for carriers who need to maintain discretion in different social settings or climates.

Capacity: One of the most compelling features of the Shield Plus is its high magazine capacity, offering 10+1 or 13+1 rounds in a compact form factor. This capacity provides a significant advantage in a self-defense scenario, offering more rounds at your disposal without compromising the handgun’s concealability.

Comfort for All-Day Carry: The ergonomic design of the Shield Plus, including its grip texture and overall balance, ensures that it is comfortable to carry for extended periods. This is crucial for individuals who carry daily, as a comfortable firearm is more likely to be carried consistently.

Ease of Access and Draw: Its design facilitates a quick and reliable draw, an essential aspect of concealed carry. Its grip texture and ergonomics ensure a secure grip upon drawing, allowing for a swift transition to a firing position.

Versatility Across Clothing Options: It adapts well to a variety of carry positions and holsters, making it suitable for use with different clothing styles and carry preferences. Whether it’s inside the waistband (IWB), appendix, or another method, the Shield Plus remains accessible and discreet.

The Shield Plus meets the critical criteria for an effective concealed carry firearm. Its blend of high capacity, concealability, comfort, and ease of access makes it a top choice for individuals seeking a reliable and versatile handgun for personal defense.


Smith & Wesson Shield Plus
Smith & Wesson Shield Plus
  • Comes with (2) 13 round magazines and (1) 10 round flush fit magazine
  • Features an optimal 18-degree grip angle for natural point of aim
  • Tritium Night Front & Rear Sights
  • Flat faced trigger
View Current Price
We may earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Read Best Concealed Carry Guns

The Smith & Wesson Shield Plus excels as a concealed carry firearm, blending high capacity, compact design, and ergonomic handling. Its reliability across diverse conditions and with various ammunition types sets it apart in the concealed carry market.

With advantages in concealability, comfort, and performance, the Shield Plus offers a superior choice for personal defense. Its ease of maintenance and durability further enhance its appeal. For those seeking a dependable and versatile handgun for everyday carry, the Smith & Wesson Shield Plus stands as a top recommendation, providing confidence and capability in any self-defense situation.

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