Legally Carrying concealed is a right that all Americans should practice. It has also been statically proven, crime rates are lower in carry states when compared to states with strict gun laws. The ability to defend yourself, family and friends is important, especially when faced with violent offenders.
Deciding how and where to carry depends on your body type, comfort and positioning. Your hand gun should within quick reach when needed and unnoticeable otherwise. For this reason most people choose to go with an appendix carry holster.
What is an Appendix Holster?
As with other holsters, this type is named after its positioning on the waist. Although not an accurate description, this type of holster is also refereed to as a IWB, or “Inside Waist Band“. So, we can safely assume, an appendix holster is carried, inside the waist band over the appendix.
The most important features of this type of carry is ease, speed, reach and comfort.
- Ease: The best appendix holsters are designed to be easy to use. They can slip in and out without the need of loosening or removing garments.
- Reach: When standing in a relaxed position, your pistol is no more that a 5 inches away from your hand. This means you can retrieve it very quickly if needed. Other IWB positions may require more reach or the use of 2 hands to retrieve.
- Speed: Within reach, virtually no travel time (hand to pistol) and one hand operation, make this positioning the fastest possible.
- Comfort: When standing or walking, your body naturally creates a pocket of space in this area. Making this carry, almost unnoticeable when worn and barley detectable when concealed.
Like anything else, there can be some negatives. The drawbacks of AIWB holsters are usually associated with the quality, make, pistol size and positioning.
- Quality: Just like anything else, you get what you pay for. Al thought the design is simple and easy to recreate, cheaper AIWB’s may not fit properly, snag and wear.
- Make: Here I’m referring to the material used, which can be anything from leather to molded plastic. If possible, try out different AIWB holsters to find out which works best for you.
- Pistol Size: Simple, with this holster type, a smaller gun may be harder to grab, while a large pistol may be in the way. Appendix holster are best suited for mid size pistols. For example : Glock 19, 26, 23, Springfield XDS mid and sub compact. But they may not suit large revolvers.
- Positioning: Know where to place your holster. Imagine, 12 o’clock is straight ahead, 9 o’clock on your direct left, 3 your right. The perfect position for an appendix holster, if right handed would be between 1 and 2 o’clock.
Placement of your appendix holster when sitting
This seems to be an issue for some, but its important to understand this is not necessarily a design flaw. If you tend to wear tighter or fitted pants, the AIWB may cause discomfort. If this is your case, you should be able to slide the holster of to your side before taking a seat.
If you wear lose fit clothing and depending on your body, there may be no need to move the holster over at all. A Play with positioning and figure out what works for you.
TIP: If you find it difficult to sit or drive with an appendix holster, try simply lifting you belt at or just above your belly button. Your pistol should now be sitting on your leg instead of between them
Best Overall Appendix Carry Holster
As stated above, the best AIWB is the one that fits your body, clothing style and pistol. Before making a decision, find out what other with the same gun have to say for that particular holster. That being said, I would like to get into a couple of my suggestions. The brand may be more important to some than the holster model.
- Price: $25 – $40
- Rating: 4/5
Galco makes a quality product for a reasonable price. The Stow-n-Go is no exception. It’s soft leather hide make for a very comfortable carry. Wear on the gun metal is also a non issue, just as it is with almost all of Galco’s line.
The sturdy open mouth, with a stitched leather outer edge guard provides a snag-less draw and a slick butter like re-holstering. Make sure to check compatibility before purchasing.
Everyday Holster’s AIWB
- Price: $35
- Rating: 3.5/5
Everyday Holsters has created a great, made in the USA product here. This premium leather holster is made to mold and couture to your body after a few consecutive uses. Thoughtfully designed to hold your pistol slightly angled for a natural draw.
This angle also tucks the handle a little further down for a better conceal. The only draw back to this holster, and this is my opinion only, is the size. I understand this is part of it ingenuity, as it will assist in the molded fit. If you tend to clothing at a snug fit, this may also be an issue for you.