As violent crime rises and our country becomes more dangerous, it’s no surprise that many are turning to concealed carry. But not all concealed carry is the same and quality holsters are your best bet to ensuring all-day carry comfort. So, we take a look at some of the top holsters for 2022. Although there are many types of holsters, we’re keeping it simple with belt holsters and two chest rigs.
16 of the Best Concealed Carry Holsters for 2022
The Shooting Hunting Outdoor Trade (SHOT) show is our annual firearms industry trade exposition. And this past January marked the 44th year the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which owns and operates the show, held the event.
This year, more than 2,400 exhibitors were in attendance. The 2022 SHOT Show was 15 percent larger than the 2020 show and covered an expansive 800,000 square feet. This year marked the first time that SHOT expanded over from the Venetian Expo to the Caesars Forum.
The following list showcases the highlights of holster companies we were able to connect with while walking miles of aisles.
New for Alien Gear in 2022 is their ShapeShift Core Carry Pack. The pack offers users four different holsters in one convenient package. In just seconds, the ShapeShift shell can be transformed into an IWB, appendix carry, OWB belt slide, or OWB paddle holster to best suit your carry needs.
“The Appendix Carry IWB holster is one of our top three sellers,” said Alien Gear’s Joe Lienemann. “We offer that holster for over 500 different models of guns. Users can search for holsters by manufacturer and model, and our holster finder will give you a complete list of products offered for that particular model.”
Bigfoot Gunbelts is a sister company to Alien Gear. The company offers 100-percent American-made, flexible steel core-lined leather and synthetic gun belts.
Said Lienemann, “They are extremely durable, can’t sag, and the rigidity provides a stable platform for consistent presentations.”
Black Arch Holsters
As Jordan and I double-timed through the Venetian basement, trying to burn off our exorbitant lunch of pork fried rice and three colas each, a new holster company caught my eye.
Parked in a single booth space between a vendor selling aftermarket extractors for 1908 Colt .25 autos and another manufacturer selling a bicycle seat designed to deploy an airbag on contact, Black Arch’s designs were clean, innovative, and well-executed. In particular, their Entrada holster seemed to make a lot of sense for IWB appendix carry.
The Entrada features a Kydex shell, cut low enough to accommodate a red-dot sight. It also includes adjustable retention and a claw to push the butt of the gun into the wearer’s body for concealment. Additionally, an extra magazine carrier attached to the holster via a flexible, polymer-coated webbing allows for some movement without binding. Its ride height is adjustable, and customers also have their choice of three different types of belt clips.
Black Arch makes the Entrada for guns as big as a Glock 19. But I think this type of holster makes a lot of sense for micro-compact 9mms. In fact, while I was at their booth, I ordered an Entrada for my Springfield Armory Hellcat. I’ll keep you posted.
Black Arch Holsters also had a new and innovative carry belt. Constructed of a polymer-coated webbing, the 1.5-inch Open-Belt is nearly indestructible and features a billet 6061aluminum, hard coat anodized, low-profile belt buckle. The belt has all the rigidity needed without steel inserts and does not require the belt to fold over itself. As a result, the user can maintain a comfortable and trim profile.
For more information, please visit BlackArchHolsters.com.
Blackhawk introduced their new TecGrip Formlok Moldable IWB holster at SHOT 22. Based on the number of people watching their demonstrations, this is going to be a popular concealed carry holster.
Despite his young age, Matt Rice, an old friend who has been in the industry nearly as long as me, walked me through the new holster.
“If you’ve ever had trouble finding a holster because of type or availability, the TecGrip Formlok holster is likely your solution,” said Rice.
The TecGrip tacky material on the outside of the holster is what is used for retention. No belt clips or other means of attachment are used on this holster. The user simply places the holster between their pants and shirt, and friction retains the holster while drawing the gun.
Of course, Blackhawk and I recommend removing the holster from the waistband to re-insert the gun. You should never try to place the gun in the holster while it’s in the pants.
Blackhawk offers eight holster sizes to cover everything from micro-compacts to full-size duty guns. The molding process is simple. Heat up the TecGrip holster in water and mold it to your gun. You can develop a simple lock at the front of the trigger guard for retention. In addition, you can also mold in a sight channel.
Versatile, functional, and economical, Blackhawk’s new TecGrip Formlok Moldable holsters provide carry solutions for today’s concealed carrier.
For more information, please visit Blackhawk.com.
Blade-Tech has completely revamped their Total Eclipse, re-naming it the Total Eclipse 2.0. Their Marketing/Media manager Owen Rolf gave me a quick rundown on the new Kydex holster.
“We’ve developed the Mod-Lok system that allows the carrier to use four different wear styles. The Total Eclipse 2.0 can rapidly transition from an OWB holster to a discreet carry IWB holster in just seconds without tools or frustration.”
Pricing of the Total Eclipse 2.0 starts at under $50, offering shooters a festival of economy, durability, and function.
For more information, please visit Blade-Tech.com.
Just prior to leaving for the SHOT Show, I wrapped up my evaluation of the brand-new Smith & Wesson CSX—a single-action, micro-compact 9mm pistol. C&G Holsters was one of the first companies to receive the new CSX. And before I had even received my test gun from Smith & Wesson, C&G provided me with a sample of the IWB and OWB Covert Kydex holsters.
C&G offers a number of different options, and I opted for the IWB Covert with the custom C&G belt clip, which is adjustable for ride height and accommodates a 1.5-inch belt. It also features two screws for retention and wicking channels on the back to help wick away moisture. But more importantly, they function as a wedge to push the gun’s butt into the wearer’s body for undetectable carry.
It also features a tall sight channel. One of the features I like about the Covert is that both safety levers are covered. So, it is impossible for the user to accidentally knock the safeties off while in the holster.
The OWB holster is adjustable for ride height and designed the pull the gun into the body for maximum concealment. Likewise, an adjustable retention screw regulates how tightly the holster grips the CSX’s trigger guard.
I found them both to be incredibly comfortable but prefer the IWB holster for its simplicity and easy-on/easy-off convenience. So far, these two holsters have been my only experience with C&G holsters. But I can tell you they have very responsive and friendly customer service.
For more information, please visit CandGHolsters.com.
I had a chance to stop by Crossbreed’s booth and speak with Grant Buckman, Crossbreed’s vice president of Sales. Grant took a moment to detail me on the new all-Kydex Rogue.
“It’s an IWB system with a detachable sidecar magazine carrier as well as a detachable claw to push the gun’s butt into the carrier’s body for better concealment. Crossbreed currently offers the Rogue for about 50 different handguns but is hoping to eventually offer it for more than 100, so you’ll need to head to crossbreed.com to see if it’s available for your favorite carry pistol.”
For more information, please visit CrossbreedHolsters.com.
New for 2022 is the Outdraw Chest Rig, which allows users to carry guns on their chest for easy access while seated. It also provides shooters with an easy way to carry a full-size gun without carrying the weight on their waistline.
The Outdraw uses a molded Kydex sheet to hold the pistol, and is compatible with optics as well as featuring adjustable retention. DeSantis includes a healthy amount of harness strap with the holster to ensure it can fit over an outdoor coat or under for concealed carry.
They also use a no-slip rubberized fabric on the shoulder pad to prevent unwanted movement. DeSantis offers the Outdraw to accommodate pistols from micro-compact size up through full-size Glocks.
For more information, please visit DesantisHolster.com.
I’ve known Galco’s Mike Barham for many years, and he’s one of the nicest people in this industry. Pardon the pun, but he’s a straight shooter, and his no-bull attitude and confidence in his American-made products have made me a big fan of his!
The combat veteran took a few minutes to show me what’s new for 2022 at Galco. Among them was the Paragon 2.0, a Kydex IWB holster that most folks will wear in the appendix position.
Its dual tuckable clips are adjustable for ride height and cant, and it has two adjustable retention screws. The back of the holster has a raised sweat guard to protect the user from any of the gun’s sharp edges and prevent corrosion-causing sweat from coming into contact with the gun’s finish. It will also protect garments from gun oil or shooting residue.
Galco cuts the holster low for red-dots and includes a claw to push the gun’s butt into the wearer’s body. Though Galco and the original Jackass Leather made their mark in the holster industry using leather, this new Paragon 2.0 Kydex holster will certainly find a following with new concealed carriers.
For more information, please visit GalcoGunLeather.com.
Kaos Concealment Holsters is offering a new all-in-one holster for concealed carry. Called the Fusion 2.0, the ambidextrous holster can be worn IWB or OWB and has adjustable cant and retention. Likewise, the same holster allows both right- and left-handed shooters to carry concealed. One of the things that impressed me about the Fusion 2.0 is its excellent degree of finish and smooth edges. Kaos cuts the Fusion 2.0 low for use with optics.
Priced economically, the Fusion 2.0, as well as other Kaos concealment holsters and other products, provide users with a quality, American-made, versatile means of carry.
For more information, please visit KaosConcealment.com.
Rounded By Concealment Express
Several years ago, I saw an ad on a popular social media site offering a Kydex inside-the-waistband holster with a quick-attach clip and carbon-fiber finish. Priced around $30 at that time, it became my everyday carry for my S&W Shield. Over the years, I’ve seen this small company grow exponentially, and when I stopped to say hello to Pablo Conde, one of the owners, he told me about their name change.
“We’re doing a simple re-brand,” he said, “It’s gear for today’s well-rounded shooter.”
Obviously, this is an effort to become more inclusive to one of the fastest growing segments—female shooters. In addition to holsters, Rounded will also be offering apparel like leggings with concealment pockets and other leggings with belt loops to support heavier guns.
Conde pointed out emphatically that the name change will not affect the quality or origin of their American-made products.
One of the intriguing new products Conde showed me was Rounded’s line of Kydex holsters for weapons with mounted lights. Weapon retention is on the light, not the weapon. Currently, Rounded is offering these IWB holsters for the popular TLR and X300 family of lights.
According to Conde, retailers love this product because there are only two SKU’s of holsters, which will literally fit hundreds of pistols as long as they have a TLR or X300 light attached.
Also new for 2022 is the IWB appendix Hybrid holsters that use leather, Armaloy, or a padded medical-grade of anti-bacterial foam as the backing. One selling point of the new Hybrid is that Rounded uses retention on both sides of the trigger guard for secure, fool-proof retention. Prices vary depending on what backing you choose.
For more information, please visit RoundedGear.com.
Timed to coincide with the 2022 SHOT Show, Safariland announced a new venture. Safariland 6000 Series holsters are Cordura wrapped in Aloha Poppies of War print licensed to Safariland as part of a holster collaboration with Otte Gear.
“Otte’s iconic ‘Poppies of War’ print from artist Andrew Bawidamann pays homage to the U.S. troops’ ongoing campaign in Afghanistan with weaponry images woven through picturesque poppies as an ode to the country’s rolling fields. We’re honored to be able to bring this homage to our holster wraps and to Safariland’s customers,” said Eric Gasvoda, vice president and general manager for Safariland Duty Gear.
Safariland’s collaboration with industry partners marks the brand’s next chapter in its commitment to providing customers with innovative, high-quality products. I’m curious as to how the holster will be received by the military, intel community, and contractors who might actually be working on opium poppy eradication.
But bravo to Safariland for attempting to honor those placing their lives on the line to make this world a better, safer place!
For more information, please visit Safariland.com.
Emerging from the shadowy world of clandestine operations and foreign intrigue, Spetzgear was established in 2012 to provide elite law enforcement and intelligence professionals with uncompromising carry solutions designed to provide impeccable concealment for service-size, semi-automatic pistols.
I was introduced to Spetzgear’s Walter Jermakow by a mutual friend whose agency now issues Spetzgear, “Do you have a Glock 19,” he asked with an Iron Curtain accent.
“Of course,” I answered.
He handed me a Kydex OWB holster that features a single retention screw, sweat guard, and the ability to accept a suppressor-ready barrel.
“This will be the most comfortable holster you’ve ever used for your Glock,” he promised.
It is formed to fit the contour of the hip and rides high on the belt line.
“All of our products are battle-tested, and we stand behind them 100 percent. Each Spetzgear product is handmade and comes with a limited lifetime warranty.”
My test sample looks like a quality piece, and I’m looking forward to spending more time carrying the Glock 19.
For more information, please visit SpetzGear.com.
Tacrig has an economical and innovative solution for concealed carriers who use more than one carry gun. Its IWB backer is bendable and breathable with a universal mounting platform. The pistol’s Kydex shell is made from thick Kydex and covers the front and back of the gun for excellent retention. Every pistol shell is cut for red-dots.
The open-bottom allows for threaded barrels, and suppressor height sights are welcomed. The holster attaches to the backer with four pins. Users can remove the shell from the backer and use the four quick-attach pins to attach belt loops for OWB carry. It is quick and simple and doesn’t require any tools.
For more information, please visit Tacrig.com.
Versacarry, a firm well renowned for their leather holsters, introduced the new Obsidian Deluxe—a Kydex IWB holster with a raised-back sweat guard and adjustable cant and retention with a belt clip that can accommodate a 1.5-inch belt.
Available for popular micro-compact guns up to Glock 19-size guns, prices start around $35, and the American-made Obsidian Deluxe also has a lifetime guarantee.
For more information, please visit VersaCarry.com.
Warne Scope Mounts, an American company best known for their precision optics rings and scope mounts, is now offering Kydex holsters for concealed carry. I stopped by the Warne booth and spoke with Randy Parks.
According to Parks, it was Warne’s machined aluminum pistol magazine extensions, designed to add capacity, that led to other handgun accessories and the new holsters.
Warne’s line of Kydex is extensive with offerings that include chest rigs, numerous IWB and OWB, hybrid models designed to carry everything from micro-compacts to full-size duty guns, and a line of carry belts.
For more information, please visit WarneScopeMounts.com.
We The People Holsters
If at first you don’t succeed…try, try again! That is the gunwriter’s creed.
Not long ago, I received an email from We the People Holsters detailing their incredibly versatile Freedom Holster. We the People claim the Freedom Holster Platform has more than 2,500 possible configurations. I was excited and contacted the company via their website, and…nothing.
Not long after this, I received a press release from my old friend Laura Burgess who handles media contacts for many companies in this industry. Laura Burgess Marketing was able to get me the information and photographs needed to allow you, the reader, to learn more.
Modularity is the key to the Freedom Holster’s versatility. Specifically, it is completely ambidextrous and can be configured for IWB or OWB carry. When worn as an appendix carry holster, the ride height of the mag carrier can be adjusted up or down for comfort.
The all-American-made holster uses clips that allow the wearer to tuck the shirt in. As a result, they evenly distribute the weight of the gun and spare mag and feature a lifetime warranty.
For more information, please visit WeThePeopleHolsters.com.
This article was originally published in the Combat Handguns May/June 2022 issue. Subscription is available in print and digital editions at OutdoorGroupStore.com. Or call 1-800-284-5668, or email email@example.com.