Concealed Carry Holsters
As more and more shooters apply for concealed carry permits, the need for concealed carry holsters has gained importance. "Concealed carry" refers to a holster or carrying method that allows the weapon to be worn in such a manner that it is completely concealed from the view of others. A number of states that allow concealed carry permits specifically require that the weapon be completely concealed to avoid violation of the terms of the permit.
Concealed carry holsters come in a number of different styles such as pocket holsters, ankle holsters, inside the waistband holsters, and belt holsters. Each style has its own strengths and weaknesses. Three variables to keep in mind when choosing a concealed carry holster include:
Weapon size - When selecting a concealed carry holster, weapon size is important to consider. The smaller the overall size of the weapon, the easier it is to conceal. While it is possible to conceal larger framed handguns, it can be more difficult and more uncomfortable. Comfort is an important factor in determining how often you will carry the holster and, in many cases, your choice of weapon. An effective concealment holster won't be worn if it's not at least somewhat comfortable.
If you have not yet decided on a specific handgun, or are considering a new purchase for concealed carry, it might be helpful to first decide between a revolver or a semi-automatic. Next, narrow down your selection within each of those groups, keeping in mind that your goal is to conceal a weapon either directly on your person or near your person in some form of off-body carry. Larger weapons will virtually eliminate the ability to ankle carry or pocket carry.
Body Type – Body type can determine the effectiveness and comfort of certain types of concealed carry holsters. Especially when looking at inside the waistband (IWB) options, your waistline may dictate whether or not a weapon is adequately concealed. Evaluate the options by testing the fit of different holster models. It won't take long to figure out whether or not IWB is the best carry method for you. If you need an alternative, there are plenty of concealed carry options available in today’s market.
Climate - Climate plays an important role in concealed carry by dictating the type of clothing that is worn. Cooler temperatures translate to more clothing and easier concealment. Hot or humid climates frequently require minimal clothing and fewer layers, presenting a significant challenge to concealed carry. In this situation, weapon selection becomes paramount and some potential concealed carry methods are eliminated. For example, if your wardrobe consists mostly of shorts, ankle carry and ankle holsters may not be an option. Take climate into consideration when holster shopping.
While personal preference will determine your choice of a handgun/holster combination, there are factors to consider when selecting a proper and comfortable concealed carry method. Weapon size, body type, and climate are three aspects to evaluate when making an informed decision or purchase.
All prices are in USD.