Getting the best appendix carry holster can be a matter of life and death. You have to be able to draw in an instant when the time comes. You must have a well-made and well-designed holster. There are many designs available, and they all have their own advantages and drawbacks. It seems like new ones enter the market every day.
We checked out features like what material they are made of, what guns they fit, how they retain the gun, and other important considerations to narrow the herd down to the best.
We made sure that there is something on this list for everyone. Be sure to check out the FAQs and other important buyer info after our list!
IWB & AIWB Holsters: My Top Picks
ComfortTac Gun Holsters for Concealed Carry
No belt is needed with this comfortable appendix carry option. The belt is included. It’s made of stretchy and comfortable neoprene. It’s fully adjustable for small waists all the way up to 44”. Neoprene is much more durable than cheaper elastics. It resists fraying and doesn’t become brittle.
One thing you have to watch out for is the size of the holster. Even though it does expand to fit most guns snugly, smaller guns can work their way down into the holster. That can make it hard to draw when you’re in a hurry.
If you have a Glock, you’ll be fine. Even the big 1911 model pistols are no problem. They’ll ride securely and comfortably. Very small .25 caliber pistols can and will end up canted and low in the holster. But this one is so comfortable that it’s the best for appendix carry, just not for small guns.
The feedback from women has been overwhelmingly positive. They say that it’s about time someone made a holster that can fit smaller waists.
But it’s not just women who like it. Many men comment that they like how it expands and fits tightly around their waists. Customers with smaller subcompact pistols do complain about how the gun rides low in the holster, though.
It’s wide and stretchy. That makes it comfortable and versatile. The comfort and the fact that it fits all but the smallest guns well make this the best belt for appendix carry.
- Elastic design holds tight against the body
- Fits most pistols and revolvers
- No belt needed
- One size fits most waists
- Smaller guns ride deep
Relentless Tactical The Defender Leather IWB Holster
Do you like the look, feel, and smell of real leather? If so, check this one out! It’ll fit all handguns except for smaller subcompact pistols and derringers. Even wider Glocks are a great fit. In fact, this is the best appendix carry holster for Glock 19 and similarly sized pistols.
There is no retention strap, but the friction of the leather against the gun will keep it in place. This feature, or lack of features, makes it easy to draw.
There is one flaw: When the gun is unholstered for a few minutes, the mouth of the holster closes up a bit. That makes reholstering a tad harder than it would be with holsters made of stiffer material.
Customers really like the feel of the bullhide leather. Many are impressed with the charred oak color that is available, although brown is the most popular color.
Another thing they like is the simplicity. There is no retention strap. The natural leather provides the friction that holds the gun in place. Bigger people comment about how the small size of this holster makes it easy to draw, even if they have a bit of a spare tire that hangs in the way.
This is a great holster, especially if you like natural leather. It doesn’t just look good. It holds mid-sized to full-sized handguns securely. You’ll be able to draw quickly if you need to thanks to the lack of a retention strap. The awesome craftsmanship and straightforwardness of design make this the best leather appendix carry holster we’ve come across.
- Genuine American-made bull hide leather
- Fits larger-than-subcompact handguns well
- No retention strap needed
- Metal belt clip
- Lifetime warranty
- The mouth of the holster can close a bit, making reholstering difficult
CYA Supply Co. Base IWB Concealed Carry Holster
Perhaps you’ve owned molded holsters before, but you’ve probably never had one like this. There are other holsters like this made for Glocks, but they are usually too tight around the slide and safety. This one is recessed a little bit in those areas. That makes for easier drawing and reholstering. It also cuts down on wear on both the gun and the holster.
The cant is adjustable from zero cant to 15 degrees. That little bit of an angle can make the difference between a smooth draw and an awkward one. The retention tension is adjustable with a hex Allen wrench. There’s a click when the muzzle hits home, so you’ll always be confident that your Glock is securely in place.
Glock owners love this holster. They see it for what it is: the best AIWB holster. We just wish there were models identical to this one but made for other styles of handguns.
Everyone liked how the holster was molded to fit their Glock so perfectly. It really is amazing. People can see how much precision engineering went into the design of this holster.
If you own one of the Glocks that this holster is made for, and you prefer a molded holster, this may very well be the best choice for you. It is molded precisely and will fit the guns it’s made for absolutely perfectly.
- Metal hardware
- Adjustable for cant and retention tension
- Strong material
- Only for select Glock models
- A little expensive
Alien Gear holsters ShapeShift Appendix Carry Holster Holster
Most molded holsters are made for Glocks. That’s a real downer for people who own and love other brands. But Allen Gear has stepped up and made their thermoplastic holster for many different brands and models. The neoprene backing layer, the part that lies against your skin, is breathable and very comfortable. It also stands up to sweat.
The retention is adjustable, but the cant isn’t. The gun will ride more or less straight up and down. Overall, the draw is pretty smooth. An audible click will tell you that your pistol is safe and secure in the retention spring.
Buyers say that this is one of the best appendix holsters for big guys. That’s likely because of the comfortable neoprene backing layer. It’s resistant to sweat, but it also provides some extra cushioning. That backing layer seems to be the outstanding feature, at least for people who have graciously reviewed their purchases online.
Most holsters of this design and material have the option to adjust the cant, but this one doesn’t. It is made for zero cant or straight vertical. If that’s a deal breaker for you, keep looking.
But if you want a holster that’s custom-molded for your gun, check to see if there is one for your model. There are well over a dozen models currently covered, and more are planned for the near future. All in all, this is a great holster that will hold and conceal your pistol well. It is also one of the most comfortable holsters that we’ve seen.
- Comfortable backing
- Adjustable retention tension
- Made specifically for each model of gun
- 30-day trial period
- Lifetime warranty
- Not adjustable for cant
Fierce Defender IWB Kydex Holster Compatible with Glock 19 23 32
We love the design here. You can pull your spare mag with your left hand while you hold the gun in your right. This, of course, is something that only an experienced appendix carrier would want to do.
The mag carrier is placed at an odd height. It rides a bit higher than most mag carrier holsters that we’ve seen. We don’t really see any advantage to this design, but people don’t complain about it.
The mouth of the holster itself is looser than most, but the retention is adjustable. Those two features together mean a nice, smooth draw and a secure hold. This can be a great holster for you if you want a top-of-the-line molded holster with a mag carrier for your Glock and don’t mind a little extra bulk.
People remark that they expected to pay up to twice as much as they did for this holster. Some people like that the fit is a bit loose. That makes it easier to draw and reholster. But some complain that they don’t like that loose feeling. It’s really a matter of personal preference.
Everyone likes how well it hides the gun, and some were surprised that it conceals so well, especially considering the mag carrier.
This is the best appendix holster with a mag carrier. It is designed so the mag can be drawn with the left hand while the gun is held on the right. Made well with attention to detail, even though we feel that the mag carrier is set a bit high for most people. It has a smooth draw, even though the fit is a bit loose.
All in all, it’s a great, affordable option if you want to carry an extra mag, but don’t want one of those cheap little pouches.
- Well-designed for drawing the gun and mag
- Adjustable retention
- Good concealment
- Mag carrier rides a bit high
Tulster IWB Profile Holster in Right Hand
Right off the bat, this is a pretty expensive holster. That may be because of the material it’s made of. Kydex is a very durable thermoplastic that holds its shape well. That’s a good thing to have in any IWB holster. It withstands the pressure from your belt.
The metal belt clip that’s included is a bit thin, but there is a soft loop available that you can replace it with. It is a separate purchase, however, and will add to the cost of the holster. You can adjust the cant from 0 to 30 degrees. That’s more adjustability than you will find in a cheaper holster, so consider that if you need a good angle.
The retention is also adjustable, and you won’t miss the loud click when you drive your gun home into the holster. If you don’t hear the click, you know that it isn’t seated correctly. But this holster is formed so well that it’s hard to not get your gun seated right the first time.
People who own a Sig P365 comment on how little friction there is when drawing or reholstering their gun. They like how well it’s made and how smooth the draw is. They do sometimes complain that the metal belt clip seems flimsy. Another complaint that comes up pretty often is the price.
This particular model fits only the Sig P365, but it fits flawlessly. The design is best described as minimalist. This is great if you just want a durable and small holster for your Sig.
- Perfectly fits the Sig P365
- Available in many colors
- Adjustable for cant and retention tension
Tips On Choosing
Use these little tips for some guidance when looking for the best IWB Appendix Holster.
Decide If You Need Adjustable Cant
Cant is the angle at which the gun sits in the holster. It ranges from 0 to 30 degrees.
Zero can’t is a straight up and down orientation. Some people like it, but many find it to be awkward. That is also true of 30-degree cant. The most popular is FBI can’t, which is between 10 and 15 degrees.
Look for a holster that has the cant you are most comfortable with or get one with adjustable cant.
Be Sure The Mag Carrier Will Fit Your Mag
If you want an appendix carry holster with a magazine carrier, be sure the mag carrier is the right size. Universal holsters usually come with universal mag carriers.
You surely don’t want a carrier that’s too small, but one that is too big will make it hard to get your mag out if you ever need it in a hurry.
Check The Retention Mechanism
Retention is what holds the gun in the holster. Some holsters use a snug fit to hold the gun in place. Others make use of a strap that goes around the back of the slide or hammer of the gun. Others use a spring that will make an audible click when the gun is reholstered properly.
Think about this feature carefully before you decide. Remember, you have to be able to draw your gun quickly when you need it. Get a holster with a retention mechanism that you are used to or comfortable with.
Size is an important consideration here, but there are other things to think about. Some holster and gun combos will print, or force an outline of the gun’s handle against your clothing.
To prevent this, get a holster that covers as much of the gun as possible without making it hard to draw. Another thing you can do is get a holster with a claw. A claw is a feature, sometimes a detachable one, that goes near the bottom of the holster and presses against your body so the handle of the gun is forced against your body as well.
If you don’t know whether you need a claw or not, consider a holster that has a detachable one. If you decide that the holster is not suitable for you to carry a gun, check out those concealed carry jackets.
Things to Consider
Online reviews from people who have bought an appendix concealed carry holster can be a good way to sort them out and make a good choice, but what works for some may not work for you. There are certain things you have to keep in mind when shopping so you can get the perfect holster for you.
You don’t want to be uncomfortable when you carry it. This is especially important if you carry it often or for long periods of time.
Take a lesson from undercover police and FBI agents, who carry a concealed weapon for eight to twelve hours per day. They use the smallest holster that they can get by with. This is because smaller holsters are obviously less obtrusive.
Think about how to appendix concealed carry comfortably, then get a holster that suits your style of carrying.
How Will You Carry?
Do you carry only in the appendix position, or do you mix it up sometimes?
The most common IWB carry positions are 12 o’clock, 1 o’clock, and 4 o’clock. Consider how well a holster will work in all of these positions before you make a decision. The most common regret people have after buying a holster is that it doesn’t fit right in all of those positions.
Do You Carry Different Firearms?
Let’s say you find a nice holster for your 1911. Your gun rides perfectly in it, and it is really comfortable in all of your carry positions. But one day you decide you want to carry your Glock 19x.
Then you find out the holster isn’t tight enough for your Glock. Now you’re limited in your carry options. Holsters made specifically for one model of gun offer a fantastic custom fit. But they fit only one or a few models.
If you carry different guns sometimes, you may be better off getting a more universal holster. In this case, think about which guns you will carry, and get a holster that will fit the biggest one snugly.
Do You Need A Spare Mag Carrier?
You may be surprised to learn how often people forget about this!
Most appendices carry holsters that don’t come with mag carriers. They are usually separate purchases. But if you need one, you might as well get it when you get the holster. That way you can be sure the two go together.
Even if you don’t plan on carrying an extra mag, they can often be used for other things, like flashlights, knives, or less-than-lethal deterrents.
Here are some of the most commonly asked questions.
Can Appendix Carry Holsters Also Be Used For Open Carry?
Many IWB and AIWB holsters can also be used for open carry. The simpler ones with a belt clip can be turned around and clipped on your belt. But then they would be turned around the wrong way. That’s why you should look for an ambidextrous holster if you want to also use it as an open carry holster.
What’s The Difference Between IWB and AIWB Holsters?
IWB holsters are made to be carried in the waistband. The best AIWB holsters are also made to be carried in the waistband, but more specifically at the one or eleven o’clock positions. IWB holsters are a bit more versatile in that way, but most AIWB holsters can be comfortably carried at the four o’clock position as well.
What Is Thermoplastic?
Many holsters that are made especially for one particular model of a gun are made of thermoplastic, like Kydex. This material is easy to mold and holds its shape very well. While thermoplastic is a good material for molded, single-model guns, it’s not the best for universal holsters. That’s because it can’t flex enough to accommodate different shapes and sizes of handguns.
What Type Of Warranty Is Considered Good?
Many holsters come with lifetime warranties. The only reason you are likely to need a warranty is a failure of the retention mechanism. That would be the snap of a retention strap or the spring of a “click” type of retention device.
Some holsters offer a 30-day “try it” warranty. The idea is that you can wear the holster and practice drawing from it for a month or so. That way you can be sure that it’ll work for you. This is a fantastic deal, and you should take advantage of it if you can.
Are There IWB or AIWB Holsters For Long-Barrelled Revolvers?
Yes. This type of holster typically has a hole in the bottom of it that allows the barrel to protrude out. Keep in mind that, although safe, they can be uncomfortable. The barrel may dig into your leg or something else if you get my drift. The exposure to sweat may also eventually cause the barrel to rust. It really is best to avoid carrying long-barrelled guns AIWB-style.
A good holster is just as important as a good gun. You need to be able to draw quickly and smoothly when fractions of a second count. Comfort is also important. If you don’t have a comfortable holster, you may avoid carrying it. And the time you don’t have your gun is likely to be the time you need it.
Durability and function are not to be forgotten either. You want the best value for your money. Cheaply-made holsters can be a headache. They wear out and offer an awkward draw. Now that you know how to separate the best appendix holsters from the rest, go ahead and get your new one today