When people think about concealed carrying a firearm, many (maybe most) folks think of carrying on their hip, either in waistband or outside of the waistband. And, it’s true, those are probably the most common ways to carry concealed in America today.
Of course, what makes both of those carry options workable is having a holster anchored to a belt around your waist to draw the gun from. What do you do, though, if you don’t have a belt that day, for whatever reason?
Fortunately, there are options for that situation. A writer going by Matt E suggests a few options for this situation, and here they are with our comments:
- Pocket Carry: This is exactly what it sounds like. You’ll need a very small pistol that you can fit into (and quickly draw the gun out of) a pocket. My stepfather carries this way and loves it. It keeps the firearm on his person and, since he keeps his hand in his pocket all of the time to maintain consistent control of the firearm, it’s always quickly available. The two potential drawbacks are (1.) that you may want to keep one hand in your pocket on the pistol at all times so you lose use of one hand and (2.) that you need a pistol that is rather small so you may deal with capacity concerns.
- Ankle Carry: That’s right, strap a pistol to your lower leg. This one can be easy to conceal if you’re wearing long pants or other long garments (if you don’t sit down), but there’s that delay in drawing your firearm because it’s not within arms reach much of the time.
- Off-Body Carry: This is often a purse, backpack or other bag, or, maybe a briefcase. It’s easy to carry your firearm this way, but if your carry container (bag, etc.) isn’t in your hand, you’ve lost access to your firearm.
- Fanny Pack Carry: The main drawback of this one is that, well, you just may not look cool. But if you’re more concerned about looking cool than about carrying your firearm so that you have it if you need it, let’s be frank, you aren’t really serious about carrying.
Matt E also mentions shoulder holsters (which require a jacket or some other cover to keep concealed) and belly bands which are becoming more and more popular as other beltless concealed carry methods.
Frankly, all of these options can work. The question is which one do you want to commit to using and to train to use efficiently so that you can always have control of your firearm and bring it into play quickly and effectively if it all goes horrible and you’re in that rare situation where that would be justified.
What do you think? Is there another beltless concealed carry method that you prefer? Tell us below.
I find that a shoulder holster works well.
I have been an ostomate since 1990. My stoma is on my lower right abdomen near what was my appendix. Point being that any carry requiring a belt and holster is out of the question as it irritates my stoma due to the extra weight of my CCW. I am right-handed so I can carry on either side with a belly band, but I find them to be uncomfortable during warm weather. I haven’t tried an ankle holster because of the concealment while sitting issue. I have shoulder holsters but only for deer hunting. I have yet to try the concealed carry under arm shirts like the ones the Glock Store carries. I may write an evaluation after I try one. Good article…TX!
FWIW, I have used both of the belly band and the concealed underarm undershirt I think you are referring to. I prefer the belly band, even in warm or hot weather over the shirt. The belly band only makes it a little uncomfortable in its’ particular location due to the trapped heat. The underarm shirt is even more uncomfortable since it is elastic and heat is trapped in all over your body, not just one location
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