An Overview of the Best IWB Holster


There’s so much that goes into finding the ideal holster for you to wear all day long. If you’re like me, than you’ve probably gone through a variety of holsters over the years, yearning to find the perfect one that means all your personal criteria — comfort, lightweight, drawing ability, and conceal-ability. We’re ready to throw all the excuses out the door — this one pinches at my gut, this holster collapses, this one doesn’t allow me to re-holster fast enough, this one shows a print — to bring you the finest offerings on the market.

You now have a little help to make finding the best IWB holster a true reality. Holster manufacturers have improved the quality of their selection by instituting the best material and design, and listening to the opinions of people who wear them regularly. Through reviews, recommendations, and feedback from people who’ve actually lived and breathed IWB holsters, we’re here to make your IWB holster purchase your last purchase for years.

You can poke around and find information on the Internet all spread out, but with this HUGE Interactive Comparison Chart of IWB holsters, you have one complete location to compare different holsters. Our goal is to make your decision a simple one.

You can read below and feel secure that these have been chosen based on experience, forum discussions and reviews from a number of different sources. Let’s take a look at the best IWB holsters on the market:

Review of the Top 5 IWB Holsters

Galco Kingtuk Inside the Waistband Holster

If there’s one aspect that is repeated over and over about the Galco King Tuc KT224B, it’s comfort. Within just a week or two of wearing this holster, it becomes broken it to the point in which you may not even realize you have it on. It’s made from both leather and Kydex and fits 9 different glocks plus other firearms and the retention is very tight. It’s great for people who are carrying for an extended period of time.

The quality leather is comfortable against the skin (or undershirt). For under $55, the Galco IWB holster (also called Galco King tuck) comes with belt hooks that connect near the bottom of the holster and extend upwards. The metal belt clips are removable, well-built and can be adjusted up and down to set the carry height and angle. The belt fit is up to 1.75”. Overall, it’s a comfortable IWB holster, stable and cost-effective with a number of allowable adjustments. Over time, the holster becomes second nature against your body and so broken in that you don’t feel the holster inside your waistband any more.

If you’re looking for a Glock 19 IWB holster, this is a good fit, but also is ideal for Glock 17, 22, 23, 26, 27, 31, 32, and 33 owners. The King Tuk can work for a number of different firearms, which you can learn from my full review here.

FoxX Holsters Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9mm & 40 IWB Hybrid Holster

This IWB hybrid holster made by FoxX is made with 9 oz. premium leather and .06” Kydex. It’s one of the top concealable holsters on the market and does a better than adequate job of blending in and conforming to your body. The leather absorbs the body sweat keeping your gun safe and clean. You can make adjustments to place the holster up or down on your waist for a better carry.

This M&P shield IWB holster does not release with the draw of the firearm. The hardware and materials are high quality for a gun at this price level. There’s no bending of the belt clips, and there is some customization allowed with four holes on each side to place the clips. It’s a very comfortable piece to wear that allows your firearm to go undetected. At under $40, this trumps many of the high priced competitors.

DeSantis Sof-Tuck

At an affordable price, it’s hard not to consider the Desantis Sof-Tuck holster for your collection. The inside the waistband style holster has an adjustable cant, and is versatile enough to be positioned cross draw or on the small of your back. The flexibility and build make it suitable for a wide range of left and right hand concealed firearms.

It’s easy to reholster by using your thumb to bottom out the area after initial holstering. The Sof-tuck doesn’t shift when you’re on the move, offering a very good degree of retention when worn and your belt is securing the firearm against your body. It’s made from premium saddle leather and is one of the best bargain waistband holsters on the market, especially for the price.

Read this extended, in-depth review of the DeSantis Sof-Tuck.

Pro Carry LT CCW IWB Leather Gun Holster

For gun owners (especially Glock owners) and the budget conscious, this Pro Carry IWB leather gun holster is one of the best choices you can make. It’s priced under $20 and there are over 100 positive reviews on this well-constructed holster. It’s light, easy to adjust, and uses quality leather. There is no thumb break which leaves people a little miffed, but the rest of the holster works great for them.

It breaks in easy and has a smooth leather lining, enabling the draw to be right on and retention tight. Reholstering is better than expected. The gun can be kept low, keeping your gun concealed well. It has a sturdy clip and keeps the holster in place without shifting.

If you’re interested in a Glock 23 IWB holster, this is a recommended option, but is also good for Glock 19, 32, and 36 owners. It made our list as one of the top leather concealed carry holsters and you can check out the full review now.

Shepherd Leather Conceal Mini

Two of the most common remarks about this Conceal Mini made by Shepherd Leather is how most people forget they’re wearing it. After a few months of use, however, there are reports of somewhat weak retention. The retention starts out tight but loosens over time. In a lot of respects, this IWB tuckable holster is similar to a Crossbreed except for the price which is less than half of what you’d pay for a Crossbreed. At a reasonable $40, the Conceal Mini is worth trying out.

It’s made from the best leather and an extremely thick .093” Kydex. Two durable steel clips help the holster remain even and locked in your waistband. The durability and ruggedness is a plus and it has an outdoorsy coarse look to it that many find appealing.

Now you’ve seen the top options we recommend and we hope this helps you decide upon one that is right for you. IWB concealed carry holsters are the type of item that takes time to get just right. It may take 3 or 4 waistband holster purchases before you find the ideal one. Keep in mind it’s important to give each holster you buy a few weeks to mold to your body type and show you how comfortable they can be. That will not only save you money, but also keep you from having to “break-in” so many different holsters.

How Should I Wear and Make My IWB Holster More Comfortable?

A big sticking point of an IWB holster is its comfort-ability. There are people that love them and others who don’t want anything to do with them. For many of these holster owners, it just takes time to adapt to their distinctiveness and use certain tricks to get used to them quicker. There’s no doubt some of the best IWB holsters ride close to the body, and have a tendency to dig in at your skin no matter how much you try to reconcile the problem.

It’s advised to choose a pants waist size a tad bigger than normal to give your firearm extra room against your body. If you elect to wear tight jeans it may be difficult to get that extra couple inches required to insert a gun into the waistband. Consequently, a sharp rear sight or hammer can stab and squeeze the skin, causing abrasions. Allowing for extra room for your inside the waistband holster will lessen the erosion on the garment as well.

Make every effort to wear your shirt loose and a little long, hanging at least 6 inches below your belt. A larger or bulkier shirt can even be tucked in, and pulled out over the IWB to conceal. You’ll want to avoid exposing the gun butt against the cloth of the cover garment, which can happen frequently when bending at a severe angle. Bending at the knees will better conceal the gun. For added relief and security, a strong belt clip is advised to keep the holster from sliding through regular movements. The handgun should also be in a position to avoid direct contact with the skin to avoid any moisture from your body.

With an IWB holster, a firearm can be concealed with nearly any type of covering garment, sufficiently minimizing the gun’s outline under the clothing.

What Are the Characteristics to Look For in a Holster the Fits in the Waistband?

Many people are still not very familiar with using a tuckable holster, and so the following benefits are just a few reasons why concealed carriers should consider adding one to their collection. One must take these factors into consideration when determining which type of IWB holster is the right call. These primarily include the holster’s safety, finish, comfort, conceal-ability, draw and re-holster ease, drawing/sturdiness, and retention.

Safety: one of the most important aspects of a good IWB holster, the gun must be able to be protected and free from accidental disengagement or movement of the hammer when drawn and re-holstered. Although it may seem obvious, your personal safety has a lot to do with what you pack and where you carry it. Most concealed carriers may find it difficult to carry a weapon on them without anyone ever noticing.

As a result of this, most gun owners resort to leaving their weapon at home or more commonly in their vehicle. This practice renders a weapon useless, since your personal safety may be totally compromised before you even have the opportunity to reach your weapon. Tuckable holsters allow you to keep your weapon wherever you go!

Finish: for one, the holster’s finish should not impede, disrupt or scratch the weapon causing it to become a hazard to performing regular duties. Over time, all holsters will cause finish wear on standard finishes through regular holstering and un-holstering. Harder finishes have the ability to stand up to wear better but even they will show some polishing on wear points as time goes on. It’s natural and to be expected.

Whether it’s leather, nylon, Kydex, plastic, or suede, all types of material leave their mark eventually. The softer the lining, the more dust particles that are retained to speed up the wear process. Primer residue and oil are caught inside the IWB holster, creating a residue that will wear down the holster’s interior lining. An unlined holster with a stitching that is secure to reduce movement of the firearm will serve to reduce wear, but not totally eradicate it.

Comfort: an inside the waistband holster must provide adequate breath-ability and relief against the body. It should also be comfortable to wear for extended amounts of time. Unlike most OWB holsters and other “untuckables”, the iwb tuckable holster is small and comfortable. This allows it to ride smoothly with motion or change in body position. Comfort is often one of the primary sticking points when it comes to holsters in general. Manufacturers of IWB’s are making every effort to maximize comfort-ability with top grade leather and lightweight nylon as top choices.

Conceal-ability: avoid exposing the firearm to the public by using a waistband holster that is hidden and conceals your firearm well. The goal is to have it worn as close to the body so it does not print. The essence of a CCW is that it adheres to the laws governing a Concealed Carrier’s Permit. A tuckable holster keeps you within the jurisdiction of a Law abiding citizen and prevents you from accidentally getting in trouble with the law. An iwb tuckable holster is so efficient that you may even forget that it was in place!

Drawing/Re-holstering/Sturdiness: the weapon should be able to drawn smooth and fast, without impediment, and simply re-holstered with one hand without obstruction from the holster clip. A holster that is properly designed will retain your handgun until it is deliberately drawn. When it stays put until your calculated measures, the carrying comfort will increase and ensure the grip is as expected and has not shifted. The durability will be determined by the chosen type of inside waistband holster, but it should be a purchase that will last and remain free from defects or mechanical problems.

Retention: hindering or blocking someone else from accessing your weapon is paramount. The purpose of an IWB holster is to conceal your weapon adequately enough to keep others from realizing you’re carrying, somewhat reducing the need for other retention devices. Some carriers who are concerned about a grab, a thumb break is the primary security device available.

What Are the Types of Materials Used to Make Holsters That Fit Inside Your Waistband

There are a few types of IWB holsters that will help you with comfort and stability. With a number of Kydex, plastic, nylon and leather IWB holsters on the market, there are plenty of options to find one that suits your body type and comfort level. What is widely considered the most comfortable IWB holster is leather, followed closely by Kydex. They each do a quality job of concealing and what matters most is how each one adheres to your body type.

Leather holsters are easily the most dominant type of holster available for purchase. They are long-lasting and are designed to form to the type of weapon you carry in that particular IWB holster. Top quality leather material can keep your holster in pristine shape and reduce the need to replace often.

Due to the tight fit and close proximity to the body, leather IWB holsters can retain moisture from your skin, potentially causing damage to your pistol. Over time, your leather holster may turn colors due to the perspiration and oils from the gun. You can keep this issue relatively minor by taking the time to clean your handgun about once a week to keep it in peak working condition.

Also, leather IWB holsters have the drawback of collapsing after the pistol is removed, making re-holstering tedious. Although many gun owners claim this is not an issue as their bigger concern is the speed and ease of drawing the firearm from the holster.

Kydex IWB holsters are reliable holster options and are gaining in popularity, especially if you want one that is firm and holds their shape well when the gun is pulled. They don’t have the same type of damaging affects the leather or nylon holsters have from heat and sweat. Draw speeds and weapon security are excellent with a Kydex and then do have an advantage over leather when it comes to drawing and reholstering. There is no build-up of material or gunk in a Kydex, allowing for a slick smooth draw that you always want.

Then can, however, become uncomfortable over time due to their uncompromising shape and makeup. They are not as flexible and form-fitting as a leather IWB and don’t conform to your shape.

Why It’s Important to Buy the Best IWB Holster on the Market

Tuckable holsters are perhaps the most ingenious re-engineering of holster designs in this present era. Although some new users may find it a bit hard to adjust to this type of holster model, it is just what concealed carriers need to keep their weapon out of sight. In fact, any user with a concealed carrier’s permit would definitely know how important it is to keep a firearm at bay. Tuckable holsters provide just that opportunity.

Gun owners know there are a number of ways to safely carry a firearm. Finding the most comfortable and practical holster is a high priority when they spend a majority of their day on the move. An IWB holster is both well-liked and an inexpensive option that sits inside the waistband against your body. The holster contains a clip that attaches to your belt, keeping the holster from slipping. Only the butt of the gun will be partially exposed under your garment just above the waistline.

They are also known as a tuckable holster due to the fact that they fit securely inside your pants or shorts, with a minimal amount of space between the holster’s clip and the holster itself. This enables you to carry your pistol and “tuck” your shirt into the vacant space. Simply put, your firearm and holster are entirely covered by your shirt while an additional attachment provides a folded configuration to facilitate the tucking in of the shirt. The additional attachment or flap comes into contact with the inside lining of the pants or waistband, and the same may even be supported by the belt with the use of clips.

Many models are currently available on the market. Classic examples of these include the Remora Tuckable Holster, which is a very comfortable inside waistband holder, with removable clips for added safety and stability. Another highly solicited version of tuckable iwb holster is the Blackhawk! Tuckable Leather Holster. This IWB tuckable holster is a true reflection of ingenuity and class, and is considered by many as the most comfortable IWB holster ever. In fact, concealed carriers using this inside waistband holder have even admitted to completely forgetting that they were packing their piece because of its comfort level.

For people who’s lives depend on having a reliable holster that will perform under all conditions is extremely important. Risking a below-average IWB holster because of price should not be considered. There is more than enough information provided here and through other mediums that will help you make a decision on what is the best iwb holster for you. The best of luck on your decision and be sure to check back in with us down the road and inform us of your choice and your like/dislike of your holster.

Tips to Help You Choose the Right Inside the Waistband Holster

Because an inside the pants holster is one of the best ways to conceal a firearm, the popularity of these types of holsters has grown in short time. With many manufacturers now making IWB holsters, there are a wide variety of choices that can do a great job.

One thought on “An Overview of the Best IWB Holster

  1. Have you considered addding the StealthGearUSA ONYX holster to your list? We make an IWB holster that is breaking the mold of traditional leather/kydex and quickly gaining popularity among IWB users. Check them out at http://www.stealthgearusa.com

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