With a plethora of hybrid holsters on the market, it can be a challenge picking the right holster for you as well as where on your body to carry it. The good news is with a large variety of options for concealed carry, you’ll find something that works for you.
Kydex-only holsters are great, but there are many benefits to using hybrid holsters that incorporate a leather backing attached to custom-molded kydex holsters. Leather is strong, durable, and much more comfortable than Kydex rubbing against your skin every day. The leather is pliable enough where after a break-in period, the leather backing will be molded to your concealed carry position making it the perfect fit for you.
Inside the Waistband (IWB)
The most common way people carry concealed is inside the waistband. Depending on what state you live in and what permit you have, concealed carry may be the only kind of carry your state allows, which means your gun should be out of sight and tucked away. Your hybrid holster should be fitted to your gun with proper retention and customized for your clothing and belt. Most all of the retention of a holster is in the trigger guard. Without a custom-molded holster, it’s easy for a gun to fall out in a universal one-size-fits-all holster that isn’t made for any one gun. For example, our Reckoning Holster is made for your gun model and allows you to choose what clips or wings to be added.
Appendix carry is a popular way to carry your gun and is named for the placement of the holster where your appendix is. Appendix carry holsters are best set up with the holster and magazine carrier attached to each other so a spare is always ready to go. Drawing from concealment is a lot easier with appendix carry and gives less of a print with the right clothing. These holsters are more common for compact pistols but can be made for larger pistols as well.
This carry position is a comfortable position, especially for frequent sitting or standing. The pistol should be in a natural position where your hand can immediately react and find the grip without looking. For an even more natural draw, pick a hybrid holster with a slight forward cant.
Outside the Waistband (OWB)
Outside the waistband carrying is great in the wintertime as it’s easily concealed with a jacket. It can also allow for larger pistols to be carried with more ammunition capacity. When picking out an OWB hybrid holster, there are many options to customize. Belt threaded holsters are very comfortable, but you’ll have to take the entire belt off if you switch pants. The added benefit is the natural cant of the holster position which makes for an easier draw. Clip-on holsters can easily come off one belt and attach to another. The key thing to look for is a leather backing that goes all the way up to the backstrap and end of the slide to keep your gun from pinching or poking you wherever you carry. Also, confirm that the holster matches your belt’s thickness.
Both IWB and OWB should also include a spare magazine carrier to be carried on the body. If you’re new to concealed carry, remember this phrase: two is one and one is none. Most permit holders don’t realize how dirty a magazine can get from being in a gun 24/7. Some of the most common issues are ammunition corrosion from sweat, dust and lint build-up from clothing, and spring failure from being loaded to capacity constantly. If a magazine fails to cycle ammunition or if you carry a lower-capacity pistol (less than 7 or 8 rounds), you never know when you may need a backup magazine ready to go. Our Accomplice Mag Carrier gets the job done for easy belt mounting.
A less conspicuous way to carry is on your ankle. If you wear slacks, jeans, or any long pants regularly, this can be a very comfortable way to carry a concealed handgun. The other benefit to the ankle carry is it can be a complete backup gun if something goes wrong with your OWB or IWB carry gun. This carry method works great for guns such as the Sig P365 pictured here.
Make it Yours
Remember that the way someone else carries concealed may not be the best way for you to carry concealed. There are too many differences in height, weight, hand size, skill level, everyday clothing, and more to consider when choosing a hybrid holster for concealed carry. There is no one-size-fits-all.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kenzie Fitzpatrick is a professional competitive shooter and an active blogger for many firearm websites. As an NRA-certified instructor and National Range Officer Institute Chief Range Officer, Kenzie trains new shooters on basic firearm safety, brings new shooters to competitive shooting, and works major matches across the country. She has a passion for teaching people how to concealed carry and is a positive ambassador for the Second Amendment.
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