By Sam Hoober, Alien Gear Holsters
There are a number of axioms, tropes, bon mots and so on regarding concealed carry. Some of them sound, logical, practical and otherwise good to follow. Others come straight from the floor of a horse stall. Among the latter is the one that goes something like this:
Concealed carry is supposed to be comforting, not comfortable.
Anyone caught saying this should have their power steering taken away, and the reason that line works is that the idea would really only apply decades ago. Even then, not entirely. Thankfully, the idea seems to be dying a natural death on its own, like other myths, misconceptions and outright hogwash from decades ago though you’ll still hear it at times.
We all know it’s bunk. If you catch anyone saying it, just disregard them from that point on. If you’re giving them money, stop doing so (maybe send some to your favorite gun writer) or at least think real hard about how much you’re giving them.
Additionally, people will find excuses not to carry if their carry setup isn’t at least somewhat comfortable. “I have to take it off to go in the Post Office anyway,” the thought usually goes. “I’ll just leave the gun at home today.” It defeats the purpose of having a license and a carry gun.
The reason why some people used to think that is that there were only a few handguns that were comfortable to carry in a concealed fashion up until about the last 20 years or so. A good number of service guns about, but not a great many CCW guns.
The gold standard, of course, was the snubbie revolver, and that sold a lot of J-frames, Detective Specials and Cobras. They didn’t hold too many but got the job done if called upon. There were a few more; the PPK was available and the S&W Model 39 was (and still is, actually) very concealable and easy to carry. Other than that, you had Saturday night specials but you couldn’t necessarily count on them to work all the time.
Holsters, really hadn’t caught up. There were a whole lot of OWB holsters, which are just fine for police and for open carry, but not too many for concealed carry without wearing a suit coat and not everyone wants to wear one all the time.
The last few decades, of course, have resulted in a complete shift in the gun market. Whereas bolt guns like the Savage 110, Remington 700 and Winchester Model 70 (perfection personified) ruled the roost in decades past, today the AR-15 is the long gun du jour. The handgun market has also diversified, with full-size tactical tupperware and slim, subcompact single-stack 9mm pistols being proliferate and popular as packing pistols.
In other words, more manufacturers are making smaller guns that happen to shoot very well despite their compact size. They carry more rounds than the snubbie revolvers of years past, though you can still get a snubbie if you want. Go to your typical gun store and you’re positively spoiled for choice of concealed carry pistol.
Then you have the holster market. (Yes, the author works for a major player in that market, but still.) Years ago, you could choose from leather or your pocket. One of the only IWB holsters was the Summer Special and related designs. Today, there are a ridiculous number of holster companies, many specializing in carry rigs designed for comfort.
Soft backing platforms, breathable materials, and so on. More attention is being paid to being able to carry comfortably, meaning you don’t have to actually choose being comfortable or being comforted.
How about you though? Have you ever found excuses not to carry because you didn’t like how it felt? Find a gun and holster combination that let you finally carry in comfort?
Sam Hoober is Contributing Editor for AlienGearHolsters.com, a subsidiary of Hayden, ID, based Tedder Industries, where he writes about gun accessories, gun safety, open and concealed carry tips. Click here to visit aliengearholsters.com.