Best Ways to Upgrade Your M&P Shield – 2019 Guide

If you concealed carry a weapon, there’s only a slight chance that you don’t own the M&P Shield. It is by far the most popular and widely used sub-compact weapon on the market, especially for everyday carry. However, people like to modify weapons to suit them and that is why there’s an aftermarket for upgrades.

Coming to the point, here, we’ll learn about the reasons you might want to upgrade your M&P Shield and the type of upgrade that will work out the best. To sum up the discussion, we have also reviewed the best product for every desirable and important upgrade for your Shield.

Best M&P Shield Upgrades Comparison Chart

Product

Our Rating

Price

Tractiongrips Rubber Grip Tape Overlay

Tractiongrips rubber grip tape overlay for S&W M&P Shield 9mm, .40 pistols

Best Grip Tape

TLR-6 Subcompact Gun Mounted Light W/Red Laser

TLR-6 Subcompact Gun Mounted Light w/Red Laser M&P Shield 69273-100 Lumens

Best Laser & TLR-6 Tac Light

Trijicon Night Sight Sets 

rijicon Night Sight Sets for Smith & Wesson M&P Pistols

Best Night Sight

Fixxxer (2 Pack) Grip Extension S&W Shield

Fixxxer (2 Pack) Grip Extension S&W Shield, fits 9mm & .40 CAL.

Best Grip Extension

Apex Tactical Specialties Inc - S&W Shield Action Enhancement Trigger & Duty/Carry Kit

Best Trigger Kit

Are M&P Shield Upgrades a Must?

Well, that actually depends on how you like to use your weapon. Upgrades might not seem very important if you don’t consider several situations. But upgrading your weapon will enhance its functionality and allow you to shoot even better.

S&W M&P Shield with Crimson Trace Laser Upgrade

The M&P is widely used for concealed carry and if you feel the need to carry a weapon, it implies that you understand the risk of not carrying one. The factory-made shield is good but it needs upgrades for enhanced performance. Consider yourself walking through a dark and silent subway, where having a tac light on your Shield can help when things go wrong.

Similarly, some people have big hands, and cannot grip the small-sized M&P Shield properly. Having a grip extension sure works wonders for them.

Some people are not really comfortable with the OEM (factory made) design and/or aesthetics of the Shield. Getting upgrades for your weapons helps with that as well.

Conclusively, there’s no rule of thumb that says you should upgrade your M&P Shield and its a matter of personal choice. But upgrades still improve your weapon in many different ways.

Types of Upgrades Featured on Our List

Although there are a ton of different possible upgrades for your M&P Shield, we will only focus upon the most important ones. You can either adopt all of these or just choose the ones which suit your situation.

Grip Tape: A grip tape is a sort of adhesive backed polymer, which helps in getting a better grip over the pistol. Installing the grip tape is easy and ends up to be quite helpful. Plus, it doesn’t add to the weight of the pistol or require any kind of modification.

A grip tape helps in holstering and drawing the weapon with ease. Plus, it also ensures that you can properly grip the weapon as you shoot. There’s also a chance that you might have sweaty/wet hands when you need to access your weapon. Having a grip tape also helps in that situation. Different tapes have their own textures, but in general, their function is the same.

Grip Extension: The M&P Shield is a sub-compact weapon having a height of 4.5 inches. Using a grip extension increases the length of the grip area by half an inch or so. If you have big hands, it is quite necessary to have a grip extension involved. But even if you have small palms, having a grip extension helps in gripping the weapon properly while you draw, holster, or shoot.

 It ensures that you handle the recoil well, and you don’t have to adjust it after every shot, especially with slippery hands. Having a grip extension also gives you an option to improve the magazine capacity, so you can have one extra round in your shield.

M&P Shield +2 Magazine Extension (Source)

Light & Laser Combo: Tac Lights and lasers are often considered bulky and redundant accessories for handguns, especially in the urban areas. Generally, because they take up more space and you have to buy a custom holster to fit them. To solve this problem, we have included a laser-light combo in our list which fits into the frame of the Shield as if it were made for it.

Having a light installed on your Shield ensures that you get a proper shot in dark areas, especially during the night. Plus, the M&P Shield is a very compact weapon and hence it is a bit difficult to zero in the target. Having a laser installed on your pistol will help you in acquiring the target quickly, even with consecutive shots and extensive maneuvers.

Sights: Sights are also an important upgrade to your Shield since it is a bit difficult to quickly aim with such a compact weapon. Having a pair of good sights, especially with some sort of ‘illuminated insert’ to assist you under low-light conditions. Such night sights might cost you a little more but they still worth the investment because of their tactical capabilities.

The illuminated inserts let you align the sights and get a clear sight picture quickly. Installing a new pair of sights on your Shield is not a big deal, especially if you are accustomed to disassembling firearms. Having proper sights on your M&P Shield is a worthwhile investment for the long term.

Trigger: The trigger was once the most upgraded part of the M&P Shield, due to the “dead trigger” problem in earlier models where the trigger jammed after firing a shot and you had to charge or bump the weapon to make it right. Although M&P resolved that problem with 2.0 line of the Shield, upgrading your trigger is still a good idea.

An improved trigger reduces the pre-travel and over-travel time and also the trigger pull weight. Having a flawless and improved trigger is helpful and can be a lifesaving mod to your weapon, especially if you use it for self-defense. Additionally, installing a new trigger is easy.

Quick Take - The Best M&P Shield Upgrades

Review of the Best M&P Shield Upgrades

This list of M&P Shield upgrades features the products related to the upgrades mentioned above. Each of these is a top of the line product in their category and is widely used and trusted by many.

1. Grip Tape: Tractiongrips Rubber Grip Tape Overlay

Tractiongrips rubber grip tape overlay for S&W M&P Shield 9mm, .40 pistols

The rubber grip tape from Tractiongrips is an amazing grip upgrade for your M&P Shield. Made from rubberized polymer material, this grip tape comes pre-cut and features an adhesive backing, so you can simply position and stick it over your weapon.

The grip tape has a wrinkled texture which provides a secure grip over your weapon, no matter if your hands are small, big, or even sweaty. The tape isn’t too tacky and doesn’t grab onto clothing which is a big plus. Most grip tapes tend to stick or grab-on to your garments, making you fumble as you draw.

The tape comes pre-cut for both 9mm and .40 models. The grip tape is ultra-thin and doesn’t add any weight or thickness to your weapon. Plus, it requires no modification to the weapon and can also be easily removed if not needed. A magazine extension strip is also included, in case you have need of one.

Pros

  • Comes Pre-Cut
  • Doesn’t Grab Clothing
  • Easy to Install With No Modifications Required
  • Excellent Grip Texture With Good Adhesive Backing
  • Doesn’t Add to the Weight of Thickness of the Weapon

Cons

  • Doesn’t Cover the Slide (Arthritis Sufferers Might Need Some Tape There)

Bottom Line

The rubber-based grip tape from Tractiongrips is easy to install and doesn’t snag onto the clothing. It comes pre-cut so you don’t have to meddle with scissors. The grip tape is extremely useful if you have over/undersized palms, or if you have sweaty hands.

2. Laser and TLR-6 Tac Light: TLR-6 Subcompact Gun Mounted Light W/Red Laser

TLR-6 Subcompact Gun Mounted Light w/Red Laser M&P Shield 69273-100 Lumens

This is the most value-oriented and innovative upgrade for your M&P Shield. It is a combination of a laser and TLR-6 tac light. The light has been designed to securely attach to the trigger guard of the shield. The combo features an ambidextrous button which can be used to switch between four modes (off, laser on, light on, laser and light both on).

The light has an illumination of 100 lumens which is good enough for use up to 89 meters. Plus, the laser light will help you acquire a target quickly under low-light conditions. The windage and elevation adjustment screws are mounted in brass bushings for long life and dependable zero retention of the laser.

The combo has a removable battery cover and features a ten-minute auto shutoff, so you don’t waste power. Each of these light combos is water-resistant and serialized for positive identification.

Pros

  • Auto Shutoff Feature
  • Laser Plus Light In One
  • Three Different Modes
  • Easy to Install and Detach
  • Water and Impact Resistant
  • Effective Illumination Up to 89 Meters
  • Windage and Elevation Screws for Laser Adjustment

Cons

  • Requires a Custom Holster
  • times-circle
    Might Promote Printing For Pocket Carry

Bottom Line

This TLR-6 combo delivers the functionality of two different accessories in one, at a reasonable price. It is easy to install and adjust and enhances your shooting ability. It's a must-have accessory for an M&P Shield if you don’t mind buying an appropriate holster.

3. Night Sight: Trijicon Night Sight

rijicon Night Sight Sets for Smith & Wesson M&P Pistols

This is a set of night sights for the M&P Shield, featuring tritium-filled inserts to let you acquire targets quickly under low-light conditions. All these sights are covered by a 12-year warranty for illumination which ensures their quality. Plus, the black finish provides a professional look.

These sights are made from metal and are quite easy to install. Trijicon night sights are used by many defense and law enforcement agencies worldwide, so there’s no point in doubting their effectiveness. The sights are available in three different variants, each featuring a different color of illumination.

Pros

  • Easy to Install
  • Durable Sights
  • Variants Available
  • Inserts Warranted for 12 Years
  • Quick Target Acquisition Under Low Light Conditions

Cons

  • Takes Time Getting Used To

Bottom Line

The Trijicon night sights are a good upgrade to your M&P Shield for shooting under low light conditions, or if you have weak eyesight. It comes at an affordable price and features a lengthy warranty. Plus, it is widely used by law enforcement and defense personnel worldwide, so there’s no point in doubting its effectiveness.

4. Grip Extension: Fixxxer (2 Pack) Grip Extension

Fixxxer (2 Pack) Grip Extension S&W Shield, fits 9mm & .40 CAL.

The Fixxer Grip extension has been made from high-grade polymer and requires no tools for installation. It extends your grip and enhances the control and comfort without compromising with the accuracy of the weapon. It easily blends in with the weapon and doesn’t seem out of place at all. Plus, it doesn’t compromise concealability.

Using this extension also gives your next finger a place to rest. Additionally, the company laser engraves the extensions upon request, so that’s pretty cool for aesthetics. This is a pack of two grip extensions, with a price that won’t even make you think twice.

Pros

  • Durable Construction
  • Exceptionally Low Price
  • Blends With the Weapon
  • Improves Grip and Accuracy
  • Gives Your Finger A Place to Rest

Cons

  • Might Be Uncomfortable With Pocket Carry

Bottom Line

This grip extension is a good upgrade for your M&P Shield to improve the grip and accuracy. It gives your finger a position to rest and is easy to install.

5. Trigger Kit: Apex Tactical Specialties Inc - S&W Shield Action Enhancement Trigger & Duty/Carry Kit

This trigger kit includes all the replacement parts to create a fully functional new trigger for your M&P Shield. Featuring a solid aluminum body, this trigger reduces pre-travel and over-travel by approximately 20%.

The center-mounted pivoting safety bar creates a trigger block, preventing unintended operation that cannot be disengaged unless the shooter places their finger directly on the trigger face. 

It also delivers a smooth and consistent 5 to 5.5 lbs trigger pull, which is apt for tactical and self-defense use. This is a drop-in kit and doesn’t require the help of a gunsmith for installation.

Pros

  • Tough and Durable
  • Consistent Pull Weight
  • Good Value for Money
  • Ready to Use Drop-in Kit
  • Reduced Pre-travel and Over-travel

Cons

  • None

Bottom Line

This is a drop-in trigger kit which is easy to install and reduces the over-travel and pre-travel time significantly. Upgrading to this trigger will improve your overall shooting performance and give you a reliable trigger that is nearly impossible to jam.

Conclusion

The M&P Shield is a sub-compact weapon generally used for everyday concealed carry. Making some upgrades can drastically improve the performance of the weapon and your shooting.

Upgrades like grip tape, extended grips, improved trigger assembly, laser lights, tac lights, and night sights enhance the performance of the M&P Shield. Plus, they also ensure that you can rely on your weapon to tackle any situation.

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