Marketing guns to women

Local firearms dealer says women now make up about half of the market

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Gun dealers and manufactures are aiming new lines of guns and merchandise at women.

Gun enthusiast Laura Hilton is glad about that, saying guns have always been important.

Hilton says she comes from a family where everybody hunts and shoots. She says when she's looking to buy a gun, it's about size, accuracy and range, not color.

"It's part of the family. Everybody does it, so it's not really a thing only guys do -- everybody does it," Hilton says.

But woman new to the idea of owning a gun are the target of a number of pink and purple weapons at Green Acres Sporting Goods. Manager Z Farhat says you couldn't find a pink gun 10 years ago, or one specifically marketed to women. Now every manufacturer has at least one.


He says, they appeal to women, but not all women.

"Some women don't like the pink. They just want it to look like a gun; they just want it to look either stainless steel or black," Farhat says. "The pink isn't for everybody, but I do find that a lot of women feel more comfortable buying a gun that is like a pink because it just appeals to them and they feel like safer with it. I guess it doesn't look as intimidating."

Revolvers, semiautomatics, even shotguns and automatic rifles now come in colors. Farhat and gun manufacturers hope ladies like them. It's not just guns, Farhat says there are  now "bling bullets."   It's live ammo with a twist.

"Anything for the range or anything a woman would like to use, they would like it in pink," Farhat says. "They come in and they see it in black and then they always ask, 'Do you have it in pink?' Or, 'Do you have this in something with a little bit of style to it?'"


Farhat says they also sell protective ear and eyewear, gun cases, you name it. Most any accessory that comes in black now comes in pink.

The most popular accessory for women at Green Acres actually isn't pink. The store manager says it's a purse that women can use to safely and discreetly conceal their weapons. And the demand is growing.

Farhat expects the market for women who buy guns to get even bigger because women are now making up about half the market so the demand is growing.