Armed Defense

Women and Long Guns – 2020 Survey Data

Have you ever thought about purchasing a long gun for home defense but you aren’t sure where to start? Thanks to all the amazing responses to The Well Armed Woman 2020 Survey, we have data that shows what long guns women purchased and which ones they used for home defense! This is a overview of the data gathered from the survey but there are some great articles on AR-15’s and shotguns if you want more in-depth information.

How much did women spend on long guns in 2020?

In 2020 the majority of women spent $500 or less on long gun purchases. At 51%, this is by far the most common amount spent. As the amount of money goes higher the number of women who made purchases in that range gets lower. Of all the women who made long gun purchases, more than 80% spent less than $1,500. This is important because it shows that long guns are affordable! So many people spent $500 or less on a long gun which can be affordable for many of us.

What Long Guns did Women Purchase in 2020?

I was very surprised when I saw the results of the 2020 survey in relation to long guns. Out of the approximately 1,600 women who purchased a long gun in 2020, about 1/3 purchased each different type of long gun! The highest percentage of women (33%) purchased a shotgun. However, nearly the same amount of women purchased rifles and AR/Carbines at 32% and 31% respectively. Each type of long gun is a good option for home defense depending on your skill level, strength, and ability to train and practice.

What long guns do women use for self-defense?

The breakdown of long guns used for home defense shows a completely different picture than the number of long guns purchased in 2020. The overwhelming majority of women who use a long gun for home defense use a shotgun at 70%! The second most popular option for home defense is the AR or Carbine at 27%. Leaving only 3% using a rifle for home defense.

Benefits of the different types of long guns for home defense.

Both the most popular options for home defense (the shotgun and AR/Carbine) are really great for women. Again, it all depends on your skill level, strength, and ability to train. Long guns are superior to handguns for self-defense merely because of stopping power. If you cannot handle or afford a long gun, stick with what you are comfortable with! However, if you can purchase and use a long gun, you will not be disappointed.

AR-15 and Carbine

AR-15’s are actually some of the easiest rifles to handle. They have minimal recoil while still being able to deliver impressive ballistics and performance. “They’re highly accurate, especially at the close distances of in-home defensive situations. They are shorter than most standard rifles and shotguns, allowing them to be easily maneuvered inside the home, around corners, and other obstacles. The accessory rails allow for easy use and installation of lights or lasers helping to ensure accurate shot placement.” Excerpt from “The AR-15 – Time To Set The Record Straight”


There are two types of shotguns; Pump action and Semi-automatic. I recommend semi-automatic shotguns for home defense because they can be fired quickly and have less recoil which is often an issue for women. “A reliable, well-made, pump-action shotgun can usually be purchased for less than the cost of a handgun of comparable quality. Also, inexpensive birdshot ammunition, typically used for training applications, is about three-fourths the cost, round for round, of comparable handgun ammunition.” Excerpt from “Do You Need a Shotgun for Home Defense?”

Final Thoughts on Women and Long Guns for Home Defense

Long guns are a wonderful choice for home defense! The most important factor is your ability to use the gun efficiently, safely, and effectively. If you have friends or family who have long guns, try them out and get a feel for what you like and what you can handle. Use this information as a guide and find something that works for you. Home defense is just as important as self-defense and requires the same dedication to train and practice.

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3 thoughts on “Women and Long Guns – 2020 Survey Data

  1. Annmarie says:

    Love my Mossberg 410. Tried the 12 and 20 gauge and they early took my shoulder off. This baby is easy to use and carry. I added a laser and a light which helps me with accuracy at night. Only drawback is 410 ammo very hard to find and most indoor ranges only allow double 00 buck

  2. Tammy Kaliko Willingham says:

    I would love to see more information about shot guns and AR’s !!
    Please allow us to shot our various long rifles, during our next groups, May gathering!!
    Thank you for all of your help and support with our growth in knowledge, safety, and usage!! I am so happy to have found you all!!

  3. della woods-nichols says:

    I love my long guns. saiga 7.62×39, 9mm berretta cx4 storm, 870 20 gauge shotgun, ruger- trump series 22 rifle,

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