Best Appendix Holster – Top 9 Appendix Holsters

Are you looking for a high quality appendix carry (AIWB) holster but don't know where to start or how to tell the good from the bad? Choosing the best holster can be tough, especially when the market is flooded with cheap, unsafe “budget” holsters and holsters improperly marketed for appendix-carry by sellers who are just out for a quick buck.

PRODUCT

DETAILS

Products

BEST FOR DURABILITY

CYA Supply AIWB Holster

CYA Supply AIWB Holster

  • Material: 0.08 Boltaron 
  • Color: Black, Olive Drab, Teal Blue
  • Hand: Right
BEST FOR LIGHT WEIGHT

Concealment Express Kydex Holster

Concealment Express Kydex Holster

  • Material: .08 Kydex
  • Color: Black, Carbon Fiber Black
  • Hand: Right
BEST FOR LEATHER BODY

Relentless Tactical Defender Leather Holster

Relentless Tactical Defender Leather Holster

  • Material: Leather
  • Color: Brown & Black
  • Hand: Left
BEST FOR COMFORT

Vedder LightTuck Kydex Gun Holster

Vedder LightTuck Kydex Gun Holster

  • Material: Kydex
  • Color: Black
  • Hand: Left
BEST FOR STRONG BODY

Fierce Defender IWB Kydex Holster

Fierce Defender IWB Kydex Holster

  • Material: .08 Kydex
  • Color: Black
  • Hand: Right
BEST FOR FLEXIBILITY

Bravo Concealment Torsion 3.0 IWB

Bravo Concealment Torsion 3.0 IWB

  • Material: Kydex
  • Color: Black
  • Hand: Right
BEST FOR RELIABILITY

PHLSTER Floodlight Holster

PHLSTER Floodlight holster

  • Material: Kydex
  • Color: Black, Tan, Wolf Gray
  • Hand: Ambidextrous
BEST FOR STRENGTH

Bianchi 6T Waistband Tuckable

Bianchi 6T Waistband Tuckable

  • Material: Leather
  • Color: Tan, Black
  • Hand: Ambidextrous
BEST FOR STABILITY

Galco Paragon AIWB Holster

Galco Paragon AIWB Holster

  • Material: 20mm
  • Color: Black
  • Hand: Ambidextrous

Thankfully, we've taken the time to compile some of the absolute best appendix-carry holsters available on the market today, covering a wide range of budgets, features, materials, and designs. From the no-frills classic leather designs to cutting-edge kydex holsters with the latest features, this list has you covered no matter what your needs are. Without further ado, let's take a look at the holsters that made the cut:

9 Best Appendix Holsters

1. CYA Supply AIWB Holster

best appendix holster

If you're looking for an appendix holster that is compatible with a recent-gen Glock 26, Glock 27, or Glock 33, the CYA Supply AIWB holster is a great pick. It's made of Boltaron thermoplastic, which looks and feels very much like kydex but offers slightly better heat and impact resistance.

This holster is designed with concealment in mind, and it does as good a job of it as you can expect when appendix carrying a double-stack pistol – I didn't notice any printing issues when wearing a loose-fitting cotton t-shirt. In terms of comfort, it feels as good or better than most of the other holsters in this price range, largely thanks to the rounded-off edges and the fact that the sweat guard covers the entire trigger guard and the length of the slide, which means you don't have to worry about any rubbing.

The holster features adjustable retention, with a pair of retention screws that can be cranked down extremely tight. The belt clip has just the right amount of tension, and you also get adjustable cant from 0 to 15 degrees, which is a nice touch for someone like me who is very picky about positioning and consistent muscle memory for fast, smooth draws, or for someone who wears a CCW belt.

Unlike some other budget-friendly holsters, this one didn't have any issues with my Truglo sights, and considering that's one of the first upgrades I'd recommend anyone to make to an all-purpose carry pistol, that's an important factor.

This holster isn't doing anything revolutionary, but it's a very durable, secure, and lightweight version of a classic, time-tested design, which is all I can really ask for.

CYA Supply AIWB Holster

The price of CYA Supply AIWB Holster varies, so check the latest price at

2. Concealment Express Kydex Holster

best appendix carry holster

As you probably guessed from the name, this holster is meant specifically for concealed AIWB carry, and most of its features are designed with that in mind. It comes factory standard with a low-profile “stealth belt clip” that makes printing a non-issue with pretty much any untucked shirt.

The holster features both adjustable retention and cant, and one thing I really like about it is the “posi-click” retention system that makes a nice, audible click when you re-holster, letting you know that everything is properly seated and secured.

A couple other features worth mentioning: the undercut trigger guard area keeps the kydex out of the way when drawing, which lets you get a stronger, more full-handed grip on your pistol on the draw, and the holster's open face design both accommodates threaded barrels and gives you clearance for suppressor-height sights.

The size and cut of this holster make it ideal for AIWB carry – it can technically be used as a strongside, behind the hip, or crossdraw holster as well, but it really does excel for appendix carry. The only complaint I have is that the edges can dig in a bit when sitting down or bending over, but that's an issue with almost every AIWB holster and it's not painful enough to be a major issue.

One other feature to mention is Concealment Express' optional Claw Kit, which attaches to your belt and angles the butt of your pistol in towards your body. If concealment is your biggest priority, the claw attachment is great and will get you as close to invisible as you're going to get with this kind of holster.

Concealment Express Kydex Holster

The price of Concealment Express Kydex Holster varies, so check the latest price at

3. Relentless Tactical Defender Leather Holster

best aiwb holster

Relentless Tactical's Defender holster is USA-made from high quality bullhide and backed by a lifetime warranty, which makes it all the more surprising that it's available for just under $40 on Amazon. A good worn-in leather holster is one of the most comfortable ways to carry, and unlike kydex, which is usually molded specifically to fit a narrow range of firearm models, this holster is compatible with virtually every full size or compact 9mm, .40, or .45 pistol, with very few exceptions.

In terms of durability, this holster impressed me. The stitching is strong, the belt clip is solidly attached, and while it may not be the premium steerhide you'd find on a Galco holster, you also aren't paying north of $100 for that luxury, and this leather is still plenty rugged enough to hold up to the wear and tear of everyday carry.

It's certainly comfortable, and even wearing it all day presents no problems with sweating, chafing, or rubbing. I found the most comfortable position to wear it is in proper appendix position, but it was also quite comfortable sitting at around 4 o'clock, though that is likely going to come down to personal preference and how the shooter is built.

One thing to be aware of: some shooters have reported that the holster is a bit too tight for an M&P Shield, putting too much pressure on the magazine release and potentially leading to an unintended magazine ejection. While I wasn't able to test this, and I suspect the issue would be resolved by breaking in the leather a bit, I think it's an important concern to bring up that seems to be isolated to that specific model.

Relentless Tactical Defender Holster

The price of Relentless Tactical Defender Holster varies, so check the latest price at

4. Vedder LightTuck Kydex Gun Holster

best appendix iwb holster for glock 19

The Vedder LightTuck is one of the most adjustable IWB holsters on this list, giving you option to individually fine-tune the retention, cant, and ride height. The kydex is thin enough to be comfortable but thick enough to keep everything safe and secure, with a satisfying click to let you know you've successfully holstered your weapon.

It does a great job of concealing even fairly bulky handguns, and if you purchase a holster claw, either from Vedder or another manufacturer, you don't need to worry about printing unless you're wearing borderline skin-tight clothing.

Vedder makes a holster for most common carry pistol makes and models, including Glocks, SIG Sauers, and Rugers, and they are form-fitted to each specific model to ensure that the holster is as compact as possible. They come in both a right handed and left handed draw version, which I certainly appreciate as a lefty who sometimes gets left in the cold when it comes to shooting equipment and accessories.

It's a little pricier than some other kydex holsters on the market, but the Vedder LightTuck genuinely feels great as an everyday carry option, and you can feel the difference in quality and durability that your money is buying.

Vedder LightTuck Kydex Gun Holster

The price of Vedder LightTuck Kydex Gun Holster varies, so check the latest price at

5. Fierce Defender IWB Kydex Holster

best appendix iwb holster

Fierce Defender's line of IWB kydex holsters are constructed on a “sidecar” style holster design that includes a built-in spare mag carrier, as well as separate adjustable retention for both the weapon and the magazine. This is a holster style that doesn't suit every shooter, and Fierce Defender themselves recommend it for experienced appendix carry users.

There are definitely some trade-offs to consider: having a spare magazine could be the difference between life or death, and not having to fumble with a traditional nylon or leather magazine pouch means changing mags with this holster is much faster and easier to drill with.

The downside is that the holster is quite a bit larger than most, and concealment suffers as a result. You are probably going to print a little bit with this holster – just enough that people who know what to look for will probably be able to tell you're armed unless you're in a sweatshirt or wearing an extra layer. Ride height is also a touch higher than average, and unfortunately that can't be adjusted. Whether that's worth it or not comes down to what each individual shooter is comfortable with.

Retention is excellent, and even turning the holster upside down and shaking it around didn't make anything come loose. The hook-style belt clips are a great design and feel very sturdy. The opening of the holster is slightly flared, which makes it a little easier to guide the gun in when re-holstering, and you get that nice tactile click that you can expect from a high quality holster made of kydex.

Fierce Defender IWB Kydex Holster

The price of Fierce Defender IWB Kydex Holster varies, so check the latest price at

6. Bravo Concealment Torsion 3.0 IWB

best appendix carry holsters

The Bravo Concealment Torsion holster is a very compact, low-profile option with “torsion technology” that allows you to seat the gun a bit closer to your body by twisting the butt towards you when the weapon is holstered. It's a neat feature that works pretty much like a holster claw does, and it doesn't feel like it makes it any harder or slower to draw.

The other nice thing about this holster is that it's cut to give you clearance for a threaded barrel, suppressor height sights, or a red dot sight, which means even a fairly customized pistol won't have any trouble fitting into it. The downside is that this holster isn't compatible with aftermarket slides, compensators, or under-barrel lights, though it's rare to find a holster that can.

Retention can be adjusted via a phillips head screw, though it feels pretty tight even on the lightest setting. My only gripe with this holster is that the belt clips are made of kydex as well – it's a very durable material, but I prefer metal clips just for that extra peace of mind. Still, I wasn't able to find a single customer complaint about the clips breaking, so I'm probably just being a little paranoid.

Bravo Concealment Torsion 3.0 IWB

The price of Bravo Concealment Torsion 3.0 IWB varies, so check the latest price at

7. PHLSTER Floodlight Holster

appendix carry holsters

The PHLSTER Floodlight is an ambidextrous universal holster that is specifically designed for use with a mounted X300U A/B light or a TLR-1 / TLR-1 HL. If your carry gun is also your go-to home defense pistol, a light is a must-have, and not needing to remove and re-attach it each time you want to carry it holstered is a definite time-saver.

The holster will accommodate almost any large or compact-frame pistol, though there are a few models that fit slightly looser than others, like most Springfield 1911s and 1911 clones. Still, for most pistols, whether it’s a Glock 19, a SIG P226, Smith and Wesson’s M&P Shield, or a Walther PPQ, it's going to be an excellent, rock-solid fit with no retention problems whatsoever.

It's a fairly bulky holster, but surprisingly I didn't notice any issues with printing. There's quite a lot that can be adjusted with these holsters as well: you can opt for traditional belt clips or soft belt loops, the retention, slide contact, and ride height can all be dialed in to your personal preference, and it carries just fine either AIWB or strong-side IWB.

This is a holster with a specific niche, but if that niche is what you're looking for, this is going to be a very hard holster to beat.

PHLSTER Floodlight Holster

The price of PHLSTER Floodlight Holster varies, so check the latest price at

8. Bianchi 6T Waistband Tuckable

appendix iwb holsters

Bianchi are known primarily for their leather thumbsnap-style belt and shoulder holsters, but their foray into appendix-carry holsters is a testament to the manufacturer's versatility.

This holster has an absolutely no-frills minimalist design, made of soft, lightweight suede leather and a single injection-molded C-clip for belt retention. Suede may seem an odd choice for a holster, but its flexibility means it conforms exactly to the shape of your gun and won't deform or loosen up with age. 

It also means that it's a very comfortable holster and less prone to uncomfortable sweating issues that sometimes affect leather holsters. It does mean that this isn't a one-handed re-holstering process though – something to keep in mind if you are a big proponent of one-handed manipulation drills.

The C-clip is not quite as concealable as other belt clip designs in my opinion, but on the other hand they are compatible with all belt widths and materials, whereas some other holster clips require the use of a thick, rigid belt or a specifically designed gun belt.

At under $25, shooters on a strict budget would be hard-pressed to beat this holster. Performance-wise it's much better than the cheap nylon or plastic holsters you'll find at this price point, and while it doesn't have any flashy features or a ton of modular options, it will get the job done without any fuss.

Bianchi 6T Waistband Tuckable

The price of Bianchi 6T Waistband Tuckable varies, so check the latest price at

9. Galco Paragon AIWB Holster

appendix carry iwb holster

In response to the growing demand among shooters for appendix inside waistband holsters, legendary holster manufacturer Galco has entered the market with their Paragon holster. Like other Galco products, you can expect top-notch build quality backed by a lifetime warranty, along with excellent all-around performance and a higher price tag to match, which might explain why they’re favored by so many members of law enforcement for their off-duty rigs .

The Paragon is made of kydex and features dual tuckable belt clips to allow for adjustment of ride height and carry angle, along with retention adjustment screws to fine-tune the draw stroke. The holster is ambidextrous and comes with sweat guards on both sides, which also doubles as a bit of extra protection against any chafing for those pistols with aggressively serrated slides.

The Galco ships with a UniClip belt clip that is low profile enough for a concealed carry holster, but if you've got a little extra wiggle room in your budget, you can also pick up the Galco Ultimate Stealth Clip for your deep concealment needs. The included claw-style stabilizing wing also helps avoid printing by letting you angle the weapon's butt in toward your body, making this a great holster pick overall for concealed carry.

Galco Paragon AIWB Holster

The price of Galco Paragon AIWB Holster varies, so check the latest price at

F.A.Q.

How to choose the best appendix holster.

Though appendix carry has existed since people first started tucking firearms into their belts and sashes, the existence of holsters specifically designed for AIWB carry is a relatively recent development, spurred by increasing popularity and the support of world-class firearms instructors like the late Todd Louis Green.

For the most part, the new wave of interest in appendix care is good news – more manufacturers are spending time and resources developing the best and most efficient holsters for this carry style, which means a safer, more reliable product when your life is on the line.

On the other hand, it also means that a lot of less scrupulous manufacturers who want to get in on the latest trend are just slapping an “A” in front of their old IWB holsters and selling them to shooters who might not be experienced enough to know the difference.

There are plenty of factors that go into choosing a good holster, including comfort, fit, durability, ride height, and adjustment options, but when we're talking about appendix carry in particular, a couple important features stand out:

Cant

Cant refers to the angle that your firearm rides in the holster, and is measured in degrees. Different carry positions favor different cants – a drop leg holster usually works best with a neutral, straight up and down cant, while behind the hip holsters usually work best with a 15-degree “FBI” cant that allows for a fast, comfortable draw without putting any torque on the wrist.

appendix concealed carry holster

For an appendix-carry holster, most shooters will find neutral or negative cant more comfortable, as it replicates the natural angle of your wrist when reaching towards your center line. Most AIWB holsters allow adjustment up to 30 degrees, and the exact amount of cant that you use is going to come down to personal preference, so try a few positions and practice with a timer if possible to see which suits you best. If the cant isn't adjustable, I'd strongly consider looking at another option for appendix carry, because positive cant can require some unnatural wrist angles that aren't great for a fast, smooth draw.

Tuckability

A minor downside of the appendix carry position is that it tends to cause the butt of your pistol to stick out away from your waistband and cause printing issues. There are a number of solutions for this, ranging from holster claws or wings to foam wedges and offset loops, but a good AIWB holster will either include one of those tuck systems or allow you to install an aftermarket one.

Not everyone cares about printing, but for shooters looking for stress-free concealment, and especially those who are after a deep concealment solution, it's going to be important that your holster has some kind of feature to address the way your pistol tucks.

Clearance

Most appendix carry holsters are going to be made from kydex or leather that is fitted to your specific model of firearm with very tight tolerances in order to maximize retention. While this does an excellent job of keeping your weapon secure even during heavy activity, it can cause some issues if you're using any aftermarket parts.

Many shooters have their EDC pistol pulling double duty as a home defense tool, in which case having a set of night sights or a mounted flashlight is a must-have. But not every holster plays nice with those upgrades, and the issue is compounded if you've got a barrel threaded for a suppressor, taller sights, or a beefier slide.

Most holsters list weapon compatibility, but those charts don't always take into account any upgrades or accessories you might have added, so always be sure to test them thoroughly before relying on them in an emergency. In some cases it will be perfectly fine, or just a matter of stretching out the leather a bit. In other cases, it will cause snags when drawing or interfere with retention, in which case you'll need to find a new holster.

AIWB vs IWB

So what is the difference between “appendix inside-the-waistband” and regular “inside-the-waistband” carry? IWB has long been a popular concealed carry position, and involves the holster being tucked inside the waistband between your undergarments and pants. Unlike appendix carry, which positions the gun in front of the appendix (surprising, I know), IWB carry usually places the gun somewhere between the 3 and 5 o'clock position on your belt line, and usually uses a positive “FBI cant” to make the pistol easier to draw from a neutral standing position.

The biggest differences between the two are going to be ease of concealment, draw speed, and comfort, which we're going to get into detail on down below.

Advantages Of Appendix Holsters

When it comes to carry positions, appendix-carry has a lot going in its favor. For starters, it's arguably the most concealed way to carry a pistol, especially if it's a large-frame or medium-sized double stack. These holsters are already smaller and more compact than most, and when you factor in the specially made stealth belt clips and holster claws available from numerous manufacturers, appendix holsters become virtually impossible to spot even under a regular t-shirt.

Another major draw for appendix holsters are how fast and convenient they are to draw from. In defensive situations where fractions of a second can make all the difference, having a holster situated just off of your center line on your strong side allows for extremely quick, smooth draws and fast target acquisition. And unlike traditional IWB holsters, AIWB holsters are much more accessible while seated or in a vehicle.

Finally, though the odds of becoming a factor are hopefully slim to none, it's worth noting that carrying AIWB still provides access to your firearm even if grabbed from either the front or behind, even if it potentially requires a tricky off-hand “cavalry draw.” Unless you get caught in a bear hug, you'll still be able to get to your pistol if you get caught by surprise up close and personal, which can't always be said for other carry positions.

Disadvantages Of Appendix Holsters

All that being said, there are a couple downsides to appendix carry that need to be covered.

While these holsters tend to be quite accessible from the seated position, don't let that fool you into thinking it's comfortable – AIWB holsters have a tendency to dig in your upper thigh while seated or bent over, and there's not really a way to avoid it without jeopardizing a safe, easy draw angle. Almost every AIWB holster I've encountered is rounded off specifically for this reason, though some of the more budget-oriented ones may require a bit of sandpaper and elbow grease to avoid any painful poking.

For similar reasons, appendix carry is not always a great option for people carrying a lot of extra weight around the middle. Not only does it make it concealment trickier because you have to raise the ride height to compensate, the design of most AIWB holsters will cause the gun to be pushed up and out, which is both uncomfortable and prone to printing. Not to say that it's impossible for heavier shooters to carry this way – just keep in mind that concealment will be a trickier issue.

Finally, the elephant in the room: appendix carry means the muzzle of your pistol is going to be aiming at your groin as you draw and re-holster, and in addition to some very important, sensitive bits, you've also got the femoral artery in your thigh to worry about. Needless to say, an accidental or negligent discharge while appendix carrying is likely to be a mistake that you don't have much time to contemplate.

The good news is that the risk can be entirely eliminated by following some pretty simple safety protocols, most of which should already be drilled into every shooter's head, like always maintaining proper trigger discipline and always knowing when your firearm is “hot.”

The majority of AIWB holsters come equipped with convenient belt clips so that the shooter can quickly unclip the holster, secure the weapon, and re-attach the holster, which both keeps the weapon from being pointed at your body and allows you to visually confirm that there is nothing obstructing the holster or getting tangled into the trigger guard. 

And should you ever end up using a weapon in a defensive situation, remember that the sudden rush of adrenaline is going to leave your fine motor skills impaired until your body flushes itself out, which is why some trainers advocate waiting to reholster your weapon until the adrenaline has worn off.

In other words, be smart, train well, and your chance of encountering a safety issue becomes nil.

Parting Shots

Appendix-carry has seen an immense surge in popularity in recent years, owing to the combination of easy concealment, accessibility, and draw speed both standing and sitting. While no carry style is perfect, an AIWB provides a versatile and effective way of securing a pistol, keeping it hidden from prying eyes, and allowing it to be rapidly deployed in an emergency situation.

Our list above represents countless hours of hands-on experience and research to bring you some of the best, most reliable AIWB holsters currently available on the market so that readers are able to make an informed decision when it comes time to buy a holster, whether they’ve been around the block a few times or they’re first time shooters.

Do you have any experience with these holsters? Did one of your favorite options slip through the cracks on this list? If so, sound off in the comments and let us know what you think. We love to hear from readers, and your feedback helps ensure that we're bringing you quality articles on the topics that you want to hear about the most.

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