Nothing makes concealed carry a better experience than having a quality holster and gun belt. But finding the best concealed carry holster can be one of the most difficult things to accomplish. Here we will help you find the best holster that will work with your type of carry method.
If you have been a gun owner for a while, you probably have a drawer full of holsters. I know I certainly do. However, many of those holster just don’t quite do the job. Many of us go a long time (and chew through lots of cash) before we find the right holster.
Below are our recommendations for best concealed carry holster. We included many different types of carry methods as well as budgets.
Best Concealed Carry Holsters
Finding the best holster for your type of carry is important. Below we list the best holsters for all the common carry positions, as well as for a variety of budgets. Any of these holsters will made a great addition to your collection and will not just take up space in your junk drawer.
1. Tulster Profile Holster
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Great materials, adjustable cant, and minimal excess Kydex make Tulster one of my favorite holsters. I own several of these and I make sure to buy one for each of the pistols that I own.
The reason the Tulster Profile holster is first on our list is due to the versatility that it provides. It is very adjustable, small, can work at any IWB position you want to carry.
However, if you want an appendix carry holster, or one that can accommodate a red dot, then I would check out the Tulster Oath listed below.
2. Tulster Oath Holster
SAVE 15% at tulster.com Use Code: CCS
Like I mentioned above, the Tulster Oath holster is a great choice for appendix carry. While the Tulster Profile is the versatile, do everything holster…the Oath offers a top of the line carry experience for just about $10 more.
You get a few extra features when you upgrade to the Oath. I’ll list a few of these features below.
Optic Ready: All Oath holsters are ready to carry a pistol with or without a red dot optic.
Ambidextrous: The Oath can be easily converted to be carried by Right or Left handed concealed carriers. You just need to move the clip to the opposite side.
Mod Wing: The mod wing allows the grip of the pistol to be carried up tight to the body and not stick out. This prevents printing, and is very convenient in a concealed carry holster.
You just can’t go wrong with a Tulster holster. The Profile, the Oath, and even the Contour OWB holster listed below are all high quality holsters at lower prices.
This is our top choice for appendix carry!
3. We The People Holsters
Save 15% at WeThePeopleHolsters.com with Code: CCS15
We The People holsters are unique in that they offer both a high quality holster, as well as keeping them at affordable prices. But that is not all, WTP offers a great selection of designs that are sure to make any gun owner happy.
Some design option include “Don’t Tread on Me”, “Pink Camo”, “The 2nd Amendment”, and my favorite “The Texas Flag”. I have found quite a few designs that I love, and a few I still need to purchase. My daughter already has the Pink Camo holster picked out for when she gets older.
We The People Holsters are all adjustable and more than affordable, especially when you use our discount code listed above.
Our Choice for Best Budget Holster
4. Crossbreed MiniTuck Holster
Save 15% at CrossBreedHolsters.com with Code: CCS15
Many people love to carry behind the hip. The Crossbreed MiniTuck offers a leather/kydex combo that was made for this type of carry.
While you are at the site, be sure to check out all of the products Crossbreed offers. They have great concealed carry belts, inside and outside the waistband holsters, magazine carriers, and many other great products. You can often find discount codes on their home page as well.
All of Crossbreeds holsters are well made and are manufactured, assembled, and shipped in the USA.
5. Independence IWB Leather Holster
- Hand-crafted in the USA for a perfect fit
- 4 Layers of premium leather for maximum durability
- Inner layer offers protection against wear on your firearm
- Tuckable clips
Save 15% at WeThePeopleHolsters.com with Code: CCS15
A quality leather holster is a great option for anyone to add to their collection. The Independence IWB Leather holster from We The People Holsters is top of the line leather and craftsmanship.
If you are not a fan of kydex, then this leather option is the way to go. While leather can cost a little more money, it does add some style and helps keep your firearm with less scratches.
This is my favorite holster to use for church or work. Not only does it add style, but the tuckable clips also allow for a tucked in shirt to be worn with this holster.
While this holster is on the more expensive side, our coupon code should save you a good chunk of cash.
6. Tier 1 Concealed Axis Elite Holster
- Slim profile
- Built In Concealment Ridge On The Magazine
- Optic And Suppressor Height Sight Compatible
- Military grade shock cord and allows the firearm to flex closer in to the body
The Tier 1 Concealed holster is one of the most popular holsters for AIWB carry. This is primarily due to the great design along with the vast amount of options that are available on the order screen.
This holster comes in so many color options as well as attachment/accessory options that you can fit almost any common carry gun with common lights or optics. This holster also comes with a magazine carrier attached with a shock cord that helps the holster bend with the body and stay concealed.
I don’t typically carry appendix, but when I do, it is with this holster. It helps keep most firearms concealed…even with my tactical love handles, and my extra 50 lbs.
7. Alien Gear ShapeShift 4.0 Holsters
If you want comfort with an easier time re-holstering than other hybrid holsters, then go with the Alien Gear ShapeShift 4.0! The weight of the firearm is spread out and makes it feel much lighter. For a holster of this style to have good retention is rare, and a welcome sight.
Alien Gear is known for making great holsters, and this one is my favorite.
ShapeShift holsters are made to allow the carrier to wear in a variety of ways which makes it very versatile.
8. Desantis Nemesis Pocket Holsters
Pocket holsters come in very handy…especially in warm weather. The Desantis Nemesis Pocket Holster is designed to stick in the pocket when you draw. It won’t move unless you want it to move. This allows you a good draw from the pocket, as opposed to pulling the holster out with the gun.
At such a low price, you should always have one of these for any of your slimline, single stack guns at the least.
If you love pocket holsters, but this one is not for you, check out our article on the Best Pocket Holsters.
9. Concealed Carry Ankle Holsters
For an ankle holster you want stability. You don’t want it to slide. You also want to be able to easily take the firearm out. The Concealed Carrier Ankle Holster accomplishes both…and at a VERY affordable price.
I bought one of these, and while I don’t use it very often, when I do, I tend to forget I’m wearing it. It is a very affordable option for those who don’t want to carry in the waistband.
10. ComfortTac Ultimate Belly Band Holsters
While I have not personally worn the ComfortTac Ultimate Belly Band, I have had a couple ladies I know tell me that they love wearing them…especially when they go jogging. The extra compartments allow for the carrying of a cell phone or extra magazine.
There are a lot of belly band holsters on the market. Most are also very affordable. Just make sure you get one that you know won’t get too hot, as they tend to cause sweating.
11. Tulster OWB Holster
SAVE 15% at tulster.com Use Code: CCS
Here is Tulster’s second entry on our list. Not only does Tulster make one of our favorite IWB holsters, their OWB holster is amazing.
The reason we like this holster so much is that despite the fact that it is an outside the waistband holster, it still remains concealable. Sure you will need to make sure that your clothing is appropriate for OWB carry, but it rides comfortably and discreetly.
Thanks to the ingenious “molded-in” concealment, low profile design, and minimal material, the Contour is the ultra-discreet OWB solution you’ve been looking for.Tulster Holsters
I always keep at least one OWB holster for guns I carry often…and they are usually the Tulster Contour or the Safariland listed below.
12. Safariland 7377 7TS ALS Holsters
- ALS (Automatic Locking System)
- Proprietary nylon blend that is completely non-abrasive to a firearm’s finish
- Adjustable cant
- Structurally sound from 300°F to -50°F
If you want OWB for open carry, go with a Safariland ALS holster. It is the best OWB Open Carry holster in my opinion. I own 3 or 4 of these and love them.
This holster allows you to lock the gun in place until you use your thumb to release the firearm. This is a great feature for open carry. Just make sure you get the one that fits your firearm.
What To Look For In A Holster
Before you grab the first holster you see at Wal-Mart…you may want to do a little consideration. Below is a guide you can use when looking for a holster that will work well for you, and your needs.
Using the guide below you can learn what to look for in a good concealed carry holster. It will help you narrow down the options and find one that suits your needs, and for the way you carry your firearm.
If you are going to carry concealed, this is sort of a given. You need to make sure your firearm is hidden from the public and not printing.
Below are a few features that will help in concealment:
- Wing Attachment: Some holsters have a wing that allows the grip of the gun to be pushed up closer to the body.
- Tuckable Clips: Some holsters have tuckable clips that help keep the firearm hidden while wearing a tucked in shirt.
- Carry Angle: The carry angle of the gun is important for both keeping the grip of the gun hidden, as well as allowing for an easy draw.
- Adjustable: Many holsters, including those on our list above, allow for adjustment in tension, cant, and carry position.
Understanding the features above goes a long way towards helping keep your gun concealed. You want to also make sure that the holster uses as little of material as possible as this will lower both weight as well as sharp edges that can poke out or snag.
Safe and Functional
For safety, we want to focus on three things; covering the trigger guard, good retention, and stability in the location you are carrying.
Safety: For safety purposes, you want to make sure that the trigger guard is protected and unobstructed. This is very important when selecting a holster. Any time a trigger is exposed or obstructed you risk a negligent discharge.
Functionality: You want your holster to be more than fashion. Functionality of the holster means that it allows you to draw smoothly, while still holding the gun in place when not needed. If you are using Kydex, a good “click” sound will mean you have the gun firmly in place, just make sure it also comes out when needed. You may have to adjust the retention of your holster.
Carry Position and Accessories
Make sure you know your carry positions and how you plan on carrying before you purchase your holster. Many holsters are only good for one carry position, and some work for many positions.
Below is a list of some of the more common carry positions. Double check the positions that your holster is able to be carried.
Common Carry Positions
- Inside the Waistband (IWB)
- Appendix Inside the Waistband (AIWB)
- Outside the Waistband (OWB)
- Outside the Waistband Open Carry
- Pocket Carry
- Off Body Carry
Besides knowing your carry position, it is also important to know if you plan on carrying your firearm with any accessories or attachments. Below are a few options that are common on carry guns.
- Red Dot Optic
- Suppressor Height Sights
- Threaded Barrel
If you don’t plan on having any of these, then you should be good to go, as long as you find a holster that works for your carry gun and carry position.
However, if you do plan on any of these accessories, make sure that your holster can accommodate them. More and more holster companies are allowing for these as long as you select them on the order page. However, some of these accessories options are hard to find in a holster.
Do you need a holster for concealed carry?
Yes, you do need a holster for concealed carry. The type of holster you need will depend on the carry position you choose. Holsters are needed for safety, as well as function.
What are the different types of holsters?
There are many types of holsters on the market. Below are just some of the holster options on the market: Leather, Kydex, Leather Hybrid (Leather back & Kydex shell), Synthetic, Synthetic Hybrid (Synthetic back & Kydex Shell), Nylon.
What makes a good holster?
There is a lot that goes into choosing a good holster. Just make sure it is safe and functional as well as making sure it works with your carry styles and accessories.
What is a claw on a holster?
A claw on a concealed carry holster is an extended metal or Kydex piece that extends to the pistol grip side of the gun to help keep the holster and gun pressed up against the body.
What is the cant of a holster?
The cant of the holster is the angle at which the gun sits in the holster. This angle usually varies between 0 and 30 degrees.
Do holsters scratch your gun?
Yes, almost any holster will cause some scuffing or scratching over time and use. Some materials are better for reducing this than others. Many leather holsters have less risk of scratching the firearm than kydex.
How safe is a gun in a holster?
A quality holster makes a gun much safer than one outside of a holster. Keeping the trigger guard covered on any gun is important to safe concealed carry.
If you have got this far you have a great understanding of what to look for in a quality holster, as well as some quality options that are currently on the market.
We also have some articles for the best holsters for some of the most popular concealed carry guns. Be sure to check those out if you own one of these firearms, or are thinking of making the purchase.
- Best Holsters for Glock 19
- Best Holsters for Sig P365
- Best Holsters for M&P Shield & Shield Plus
- Best Holsters for Springfield Hellcat
- Best Holsters for Glock 43/43x
- Best Leather Holsters
We will add to the list above as we add more holster articles. Be sure to check back often. While you are here you can read up on all of the gear that you will need to improve your concealed carry experience.
Don’t forget to check out our Best Gun Belts Article to make sure you carry comfortable and safe!