I promised that I would elaborate on HOW to wear a concealed carry holster, specifically the Super Stealth Inside the waistband hip holster by Old Faithful Holsters which I reviewed in this article. Throughout my years of open carrying there were times where life necessitated that I conceal carry, and I always felt so frustrated feeling like I could not conceal carry on my person. It is easy to become frustrated during this process as concealed carrying a midsize or full size (in my case Glock 19) around feminine curves is very challenging. Our clothes are shorter and more form fitting than most guys, and abnormal bulges are more often noticed on our hourglass bodies. But, never fear there are some tricks that I’ve learned over the past few weeks.
Specific concealed carry holsters are your best friend! Whether a thigh holster, bra holster, or an inside the waistband holster, it will help immensely wearing a holster that was designed to be covert. Finding the right holster for how you want to carry will depend upon your wardrobe, and personal preferences. I decided to start with an inside the waistband holster, as this holster would conceal in a similar location to where I already open carried. However, I would definitely advise having as many ways to carry as possible as there will always be different days, different outfits with different needs. It is always nice to have a purse you use for concealed carry as a back up, though it is not my preference to carry that way.
Also, think carefully about what firearm you do want to conceal. You do not necessarily have to choose the smallest gun, but that would definitely make it easier. That does not mean it is impossible to concealed carry a bigger gun like a Glock 19, it may include more discomfort than wearing a smaller firearm.
As I was beginning a new career in my life, I had already prepared money in the budget to buy more clothes to outfit myself in a more professional style. Beforehand I might have worn a cute shirt and jeans, but especially many tshirts. It was thus easier to purchase new items to my wardrobe that would be professional, multifunctional, as well as able to conceal carry. Thus I could wear my professional outfits to church, etc.
First step was searching for more slacks/khakis. I decided to take the holster with me while I went to Old Navy to get an idea on what I needed. Take your holster with you when you shop for new pants! Generally speaking most will work, as many jeans are made of stretchy materials, however, with slacks you may need to get a slight size bigger to ensure room for your gun. Pay attention to the rise of your pants. For me it worked best to have pants with a classic or “higher” rise as compared to low rise pants. This will determine the placement of your holster.
Next I’ll break down the fundamentals or easiest clothing staples to be able to ensure the ability to conceal carry. Many of these things I learned from reading many of Cornered Cat’s articles, particularly “Straight Talk About Curves” which discusses what to do with our curvy issues to carrying a hidden firearm. Read her stuff as she has tons of great articles addressing all sorts of concerns about carrying firearms from a woman’s perspective! On YouTube there are several women’s channels that you do not want to miss. Lima Life records videos about holster reviews, and how to combat someone while you are also carrying your child. FaliaPhotography offers some great reviews and more advice about how to conceal carry. A facebook page and website The Well Armed Woman is definitely worth adding to stay abreast of news, some of the best products, and holster review videos. Keep searching and let me know if there are any other great sites that you find.
Okay, so spend some time with your holster, if there are different cants or angles to wear it in, try it in various positions to see what looks best. With my hip holster I was actually wearing it in the small of my back for a while because that was the only place I thought there was room for it. However, husband ensured me that it would mold to my body if I placed it correctly along the hem of my pant leg. Allow yourself time with your holster and patience to figure it out.
Here are the surefire steps and keys that I found worked with my inside the waistband holster, these may not be as helpful depending on what type of holster you are wanting to conceal carry.
#1 Begin with a long tanktop/camisole, especially if it has a few inches of lace. The lace helps to hide any peekage of the nose of your gun (in case it isn’t hidden by your pants pockets), as well as to ensure that your outfit remains a concealed carry outfit.
#2 If at all possible wear a shirt that is looser/longer around the bottom, empire waist shirts work perfectly for this! Depending on the shirt you may not even need a cover garment. If your shirts are tighter do not worry there are ways to still conceal your firearm.
Two great shirts that do not need a cover garment:
A tighter shirt that will need a cover garment:
#3 The magic word or phrase really is “cover garment” this is likely the part that you’re thinking, “Man, I really do not want to completely change my wardrobe and how I wear clothes!” However, using a cover garment is literally your best friend and will make or break your concealed carry. The keys to a great cover garment are: loose, and long over the hips. Items that work great are sweater vests (can be worn open instead of buttoned in front), cardigans, dressy shrugs, etc. I found 5 great garments at the thrift store 2 of which were brand new with the Kohl’s tags still on them, for $25! Also, pinterest has some great articles about how to make your own: crochet shrug, and upcycle tshirts into shrugs.
You can see a slight bulge in the picture, but only if you are looking for it. Generally speaking you’d be moving around so no one will notice.
I know that I didn’t share many outfits, but I wanted to break down the concepts to the few simple steps! For other outfit ideas, or to see videos of this in action visit the YouTube channels that I mentioned. Please comment with any questions or suggestions. I hope to be reviewing more holsters soon. A thigh holster should soon be ordered, because this girl needs to be able to conceal carry on her person while she is wearing skirts and dresses! :0)