Recently, while visiting a neighboring state I was interested in overhearing the locals speak of a man who accidentally shot himself in the buttocks with a .380 round (stop smiling this is serious). How could this have been accomplished? The man was carrying his firearm (legally) in his rear pocket and it got caught on something as he exited his vehicle.
Lesson to be learned? This day and age we are overwhelmed with new and wonderful conceal and carry holsters designed for almost every need imaginable. There are holsters for bras (Flash bang — clever name) and holsters for ankles. Bikers have holsters sewn into leather vests for ease in carry and ease in access while not obstructing their ability to ride safely.
Men and women carry concealed across the country and if asked, most have specific holsters they favor.
A recent front runner that we first encountered at the Las Vegas Shot Show this year is the “Sticky Holster.” Known for its bright green packaging and snake like black texture, this affordable holster has quickly surpassed several of the other brands out there. It does not attach by clip or strap, but simply sticks to your body, regardless of where you put it, and stays there comfortably, your handgun in tow.
Of course everyone is different and that is why so many products are out there. Some folks will only carry in leather. A great choice but not a cheap one – though I have seen leather holsters more than 25 years old in very good condition.
“Inside the pant” carry is a choice some make but it is not for everyone. Depending on your outfit (ladies) it may not be the right choice, especially during warmer weather when we tend to wear less and lighter clothing. One of my favorite choices for ladies is the purse holster. Generally these are leather purses designed with a holster compartment, keeping all your goodies away from your firearm. There’s nothing worse than needing your firearm and grabbing your hairbrush instead! Keep them separate if you can. Conceal purses range from the simple fanny pack, great for hiking or day trips to the all-inclusive over the shoulder bag capable of fitting the kitchen sink. Don’t judge we’ve all had one!
Another popular way to carry concealed is on a belt. Something as simple as a sleeve of leather that attaches to your belt so that you can tuck your gun in when needed, but returns flat and virtually invisible when not in use, is quite practical. There are traditional holsters made of leather, kyodex and nylon. Some have quick release features that ensure only you have access (usually through a release button) or a simple strap to keep the gun from coming loose (great for hiking, hunting or riding a vehicle like a motorcycle or ATV). The only downside to leather or kyodex is that they are usually molded for a specific brand/model whereas nylon tends to be more adaptable.
Once you have your Conceal and Carry permit, take time to find the right holster for your needs. What works for one person may not work for another. Holsters are like shoes, make sure the one you pick is comfortable, easy to use and suits your needs.
Remember that knowledge is power and the more you know the better choices you make.
Dorothy Royal is the owner of Surf City Guns and Ammo, mother of two wonderful children, ringmaster of a herd of miniature ponies and an avid member of the Surf City Writers Group and Topsail Book Club.