What Type Of Holster Is Best For Open Carry?
What Kind Of Open Carry Holster Should I Get?
Open carry can be a divisive topic. Some people abhor the practice and decry people who open carry, some people support the right but not the practice, and some people believe open carry should be the norm.
As there has been an uptick in new firearms owners and new carriers, it's worth exploring what kind of holster should be used if one decides to open carry. In this blog, we explore the attributes that define the best open carry holster, including adjustable positioning, secure belt attachment, and precise fitment of the pistol.
Attributes To Look For In An Open Carry Holster
There are certain minimum standards that any open carry holster should have.
An excellent open carry holster offers flexibility in terms of positioning. Ride height, cant angle, passive retention should have some range of adjustment to get the best positioning for the user.
The last thing you want is for your holster to shift around or completely fall off your belt in a high-stakes situation. Therefore, secure belt attachment is a crucial feature to look for in an open carry holster. A paddle holster is not necessarily the best choice here; while some may attach far more securely to the wearer than others, a belt slide or drop leg holster is the better choice.
A one-size-fits-all approach does not work when it comes to holsters. Each pistol model has unique dimensions, so it’s critical to find a holster that fits your firearm like a glove. Precise fitment ensures your gun won’t wiggle or slip out, providing a greater level of safety and security. Ergo, get a holster that's made for your gun.
Retention Holsters Are Absolutely Recommended, If Not A Must
While everyone is free to make their own decisions, the best practice is to use an open carry holster that has active retention. Not only does it mitigate the risk of a gun drop, it guards against gun grabs.
Gun grabs are not a hypothetical danger. Not only are officers disarmed and murdered every year in the line of duty with their duty weapons, open carriers are absolutely targeted by opportunistic criminals.
While not necessarily everyday occurrences, openly carried firearms getting stolen occurs regularly enough that one simply cannot ignore it, such as this instance from late 2022 and of course this viral video from 2021:
As a result, it's fair to say that using a retention holster for open carry is absolutely a best practice. Consider at least Level II retention, if not a Level III duty holster.
There's a reason police wear them in the line of duty!