What holster works for me?
With so many companies out there and hundreds of designs it can be hard to make the right purchase for a holster. First you need to figure out how you are going to carry. Open carry? Concealed carry? Both are great, but each have there pro’s and cons. How you feel about it really matters. How you dress matters. Your lifestyle will play a role in it as well. Can you wear a firearm on the outside of your clothing and still conduct your daily business? Now when I make comments about this keep in mind I am very comfortable with firearms and makes me feel safe seeing some Responsibly armed citizen with a firearm on their side. But a businessman in a suit may not look “right” open carrying. Then again if your pants are worn below your butt cheeks maybe carrying on your side may not work well no matter what you do,
and carrying outside a holster is NEVER safe. PERIOD. So if that’s the case you may want to think about a shoulder carry. Another thing to think about is where you will be carrying. On your side? Appendix carry? The small of your back? Or maybe it’s your ankle holster? It’s all up to you and what is comfortable for you. If how you carry hurts or just does not work for your everyday activity, you won’t carry. Picking a holster is not as easy as pointing at one a buying it. I recommend finding your local firearms dealer and asking to try some on. I have never had a dealer tell me no. They of all people should know and understand how important this step is. So lets start open carry. Open carry has so many up sides to it. There is a reason Police Officers open carry. Here’s my pick of holster and opinion, Blackhawk. Easy to carry, Quick to draw and just feels great on the side. Even wearing a jacket or over shirt, access is simple not having your firearm inside your pants. I carry level two Serpa. The holster is set up to have a perfect natural draw where your finger is placed when you unholster. Your trigger finger is on the side of the slide and someplace other than the trigger. The level two refers to the retention, meaning how it’s held or locked into the holster. You can’t just pull the firearm out. It takes a push of a retention button to unholster. So people can’t just walk up and disarm you without being in the perfect alignment with the holster, and lets hope your situational awareness will never put someone that close to you. So right there is the flaw with open carry, people know it’s there if it’s not covered. For most that is a deterrence from being stupid. For others it’s an “open” opportunity for looks, staring, dumb comments and maybe even a challenge. Which brings us to concealed carry. For most states you need a concealed weapons permit. Well worth the cost, wait and background checks you go through. Now I’m not familiar with every state, so just in general this means not only can you carry concealed but you can transport a loaded firearm in a moving vehicle as well. For most states concealed carry definition is when the handle or grip is not visible. My pick is Alien Gear Cloak 3.0 holster. This is my everyday carry holster. Place that on my side, put a over shirt or jacket on and my firearm disappears. I carry a full size handgun with a 4.5 inch barrel, not easy to conceal, and yet the holster does a great job. It uses a plastic or kydex shell to hold your firearm in tightly. The inside of the holster uses neoprene as padding and a way to prevent sweat buildup. The holster can be carried on your side or the small of your back. I will always recommend carrying on your side and not your back. Dirtbags are rarely alone and travel in packs and the last thing I want is my hand behind my back, giving them the chance to restrain ME. Plus carrying in the small of your back could lead to permanent damage to your body after years of sitting, like when your driving. The up side to concealed carry is no one knows you gun is there. The downside is slow to draw. It takes a lot of practice to draw effortlessly and not get slowed down by your cover. Practice will work and you can make your draw just as fast, but always remember in the moment of stress you will be put under at worst time of your life, the less you have to do, the better.
Here is a quick video covering my holsters:
In closing the best advice I can give is look, try, look, try. Never feel you have to settle, there’s so many holster’s out there you will find the one for you when you decide to protect you, your family and loved ones, or that stranger in need.