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How to Choose a Holster That’s Right for YouWords by Richard Nance
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It’s not uncommon for a prospective handgun buyer to spend hours researching their options before making a purchase. Savvy shooters may even visit a range that rents guns and “test drive” the model they’ve been eyeing to see how it performs. Unfortunately, many underestimate the important role the holster plays in carrying a concealed handgun. When it comes to selecting a holster, price alone is often the deciding factor.
Since your holster is the interface between your gun and your body, it is unquestionably a vital piece of gear. A poorly designed or ill-suited holster could lead to discomfort, a compromised drawstroke, and even to the loss of your gun. You don’t have to spend a fortune on a holster but skimping on this potentially life-saving product is ill-advised. Your choice of holster is deserving of serious contemplation.
A quality concealed carry holster must strike a balance between concealment and accessibility, but must also be comfortable enough to actually wear. Here are a few offerings from Blackhawk and Uncle Mike’s that are sure to fill the bill regardless of the type of gun and mode of carry you employ.
BLACKHAWK!® SERPA® Holster
The SERPA helped establish Blackhawk’s reputation as a premier provider of tactical equipment to military, law enforcement, and civilian shooters. Made from high performance engineered thermoplastic, the SERPA is both lightweight and durable, but what really sets the SERPA apart is its Auto Lock™ feature, which engages the trigger guard upon holstering, effectively locking the gun in place. The “Auto Lock” helps safeguard your gun from an assailant yet enables you to draw by simply achieving a proper shooting grip, with your index finger providing slight inward pressure to the finger tray. Keeping your finger flat while drawing the finger groove aligns the finger along the frame of the handgun.
Each SERPA comes with belt loop and paddle platforms so you have options when attaching it to your belt. The belt loop platform offers a more secure mount, while the paddle design is faster to don and doff, making it a popular choice when at the range. Given its popularity, chances are there’s a Serpa made to fit whatever handgun your plan to carry.
Uncle Mike’s® Inside-the-Pant Holster
Made from an ultra-thin, four-layer laminate, Uncle Mike’s Inside-the-Pant holster offers the comfort you want and the concealment you need. The internal moisture barrier helps safeguard your gun from damage caused by the perspiration inherent with this increasingly popular mode of carry.
Its suede-like exterior helps the holster adhere to the inside of your pants and the retention clip anchors the holster to your belt. The nylon lining facilitates a smooth and efficient draw, while the inside-the pant holster can be purchased with an open top or with a fold-over Velcro retention strap. The inside-the-pant holster line will accommodate a wide array of pistols and revolvers.
BLACKHAWK! Hook Back Adjust Holster
This unique nylon holster is fully adjustable to accommodate most pistols and revolvers but it’s not intended to be a stand-alone holster. Instead, it is designed to be used in conjunction with Blackhawk’s popular Diversion line of innocuous-looking packs including satchels, messenger bags, and backpacks.
As its name implies, the hook back adjust holster adheres to a hook and loop section located within these packs. The holster can be mounted at just about any angle in order to expedite your drawstroke.
Since it is fully adjustable, it can also accommodate most handguns with lights, lasers, or even micro red dot sights!
Uncle Mike’s Inside-the-Pocket Holster
Once considered too diminutive for personal protection, cartridges like the .380 ACP are now wildly popular defensive handgun calibers. These sub-compact pistols have joined the venerable snub-nosed revolver as the “pocket guns” of today. When you carry a gun in your pocket, you need a holster that helps mask the outline of your gun and keeps the gun’s grip oriented vertically for easy access.
Uncle Mike’s Inside-the-Pocket holster does both. Its non-slip band helps ensure the holster stays in your pocket when you draw your gun. The inside-the-pocket holster can be purchased to handle everything from small autos like the .22 LR to sub-compact pistols chambered in 40 S&W.
BLACKHAWK! Detachable Slide Leather Concealment Holster
Unlike traditional slide-style holsters that are designed to loop your belt through, Blackhawk’s Detachable Slide Leather holster is secured to your belt by angle cut belt loops featuring non-reflective black snap covers. This enables you to strap your holster on and take it off without having to remove your belt.
This holster’s adjustable thumb break ensures your gun stays put until you need it. The holster’s forward cant facilitates a proper shooting grip when worn on or behind the hip and its streamlined profile aids in concealment. The detachable slide leather holster is available in several models to accommodate many popular handguns.
Uncle Mike’s Sidekick® Ambidextrous Hip Holster
This versatile holster’s reversible belt loop allows you to wear it either inside or outside the waistband. It’s even convertible for right or left handed use. The hook and loop retention strap and molded thumb break offer superior retention to open-top holsters without hindering your draw stroke.
Its padded, waterproof interior provides considerable corrosion resistance to your gun and the steel belt clip keeps this holster anchored to your belt. Best of all, Uncle Mike’s Sidekick has an integral magazine pouch so extra ammunition is always at the ready.
Carry in Comfort
Don’t underestimate the importance of carrying your defensive handgun in the right holster. A good holster offers adequate concealment while at the same time, providing unimpeded access to your gun. Remember, a holster is an important purchase. Choose wisely.