How do you conceal carry without a belt? A belly band is a versatile option.
As much as we all love a good IWB or OWB for everyday carry, sometimes those two options aren’t the best or just aren’t practical for the situation. What do you do then? Not carry a gun and leave yourself vulnerable? Thankfully, that choice can come off the table if you have a great belly band.
Belly bands aren’t new. They’ve been around for years. But they are gaining popularity thanks to two factors: greater acceptance of athletic wear as out-in-public casual and the increase of women carrying guns. Those are two very different things in some ways, but they are very similar in others.
Why So Popular?
Before we dive too far into the answer, let’s look at how belly bands differ from conventional holsters.
First is the attachment mechanism. Unlike other holsters, belly bands do not have loops or clips that need to fasten to a belt or pants. They are standalone holsters that don’t rely on anything else to keep them on the wearer. It’s the main reason people like them.
At its heart, a belly band is a wide piece of stretchy material that wraps around the belly (clever, no?) and affixes to itself with hook and loop to stay in place. Around the belly band are pockets of various shapes and sizes for a gun, knife, spare magazine, or other accessories. Some belly bands, such as our Modular Belly Band Package, include a hard shell Kydex holster for the gun and available accessories like a spare mag pouch that attach via hook and loop.
The beauty of a belly band is its versatility for both men and women. While men typically wear pants or jeans with a belt, women often do not. This poses a unique challenge for women: how to hide a gun when you can’t use a regular holster. The belly band solves that by not needing help to stay put.
With the increasing popularity of athletic wear both at the gym and out on the town, what do you do with a gun? A belly band allows you to wrap the band around you, throw a t-shirt over the top, and pair it all with shorts or yoga pants.
What about for a night on the town? For the ladies, if you wear a skirt and top, hiding a gun underneath a tee or blouse becomes easier with a belly band. It’s a great way to conceal carry without revamping your wardrobe. Wear what you want and still protect yourself.
For everyone, if you hit the gym or head out for a walk or run, wrap a belly band around your middle, throw your workout top over it, and nobody has any idea you’re prepared.
Another great feature of a belly band is its infinite positioning. Because it wraps about the body, the holster can be positioned anywhere you want it: front, back, side, high, mid, low. Unlike “tactical underwear” which has fixed locations for the holster and accessory pouch, a belly band is fully adjustable to your size and desired carry position.
Advantages of Certain Styles
Not all belly bands are created equal. Some are better than others. Here are a couple of things to look for when choosing a good belly band.
- The holster: How well does it hold, and more importantly, protect the gun? A soft holster does not completely protect the trigger. Rubbing up against something could trip the trigger if it is not surrounded by a hard case. Kydex or other hard material can prevent this potentially dangerous situation.
- Adding accessories: How easy is it to add mag pouches or other carry pouches? Can you put them where you want them? Is there enough loop on the belly band to accept the hook-backed accessories?
If you wear a lot of clothing without belts or want a way to carry on those rare occasions when your wardrobe is a bit more challenging to conceal a gun, belly bands make a great option.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
David Workman is an avid gun guy and a contributing writer to several major gun publications. As an NRA-certified instructor, David trains new shooters on basic handgun skills and CCW requirements and is a strong advocate for training as much as you possibly can. “Real-life shootouts don’t happen at a box range.”
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©MTC Holsters, LLC and CrossBreed Holsters Blog, 2021.
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Workman and the CrossBreed Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
1 thought on “Join the Belly Band Groupies”
Do you have one of the belly bands that would support a Glock 23, and or a Glock 21, and or a very old pistol a Smith & Wesson model 59?
Does the belly band “print“ more than one of your IWB concealed holsters? Is it practical to use a belly band holster with a shirt and tie? It looks like it would be more comfortable, but I just don’t know about the practicality and how much it would print…