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Kydex Vs Leather Holsters For IWB Carry

Buy at Amazon from Holster HQ

Carrying a gun is a serious decision. It Should never be taken lightly. Every detail including training and licensing has been completed. You have considered the size, brand, and caliber carefully before even carrying and concealing your weapon.

How much time did you put into picking the right holster?

Most people spend their time learning about their gun and what type of bullets are best for home defense. Hopefully after that practicing is at the top of this list before you start carrying. Next is to simply pick a holster at random ignoring the very thing protecting your weapon, your holster.

Do you know what the best material for a holster is?

There are a few different options. Plastic, Nylon, Leather, Kydex



-Feels good but has major draw backs.

-It doesn’t last as long as harder materials, it’s not waterproof

-it is sensitive to temperature, moisture and humidity

-it’s retention abilities are even limited

-leather holsters may cause excessive wear marks

-extra maintenance is needed for the leather


-comfort, its hard to beat the feel of a leather holster

-silent draws, other styles do make a noise when drawing

-Look, probably the biggest appeal is the appearance


In my option if you don’t care about quality, where it’s made, and durability then you can get a cheap plastic holster. It probably won’t last if you use it often.


They are soft and flimsy and tend to collapse after the gun is drawn making it harder to re-holster. A genuine risk is that you could catch the trigger on an edge by accident. Lastly, they absorb everything, just like clothing does. I would even pick a plastic holster over a nylon holster just about every time.


The answer to a trouble-free Holster is Kydex

-strong and durable


-retention adjustments

-waterproof and easy to clean

Kydex comes in different thickness and many designs. Its lightweight, rigid and tough. One thing to know is that all Kydex holsters are not equal. Some Holsters claiming to be Kydex are actually injection molded. Kydex Holsters are never injection molded. Real Kydex is heated and molded around the custom mold for a specific model of gun to get the perfect fit. Real Kydex creates minimal wear on your gun and then only on the retention points of contact.

Another great feature about Kydex is the speed at which you can draw. With adjustable tension you can make it take more or less pressure to release your weapon. Then for even more speed you can add a lubricant for the fastest draw possible.

With so many options how do you know what kind of Holster to choose?

First off you need to figure out what your purpose and use is. How will you be carrying it? What position will you be wearing it in? Are you looking for outside the waist band (OWB)? Or inside the waste band (IWB)?

If your looking for Inside the Waist Band

I recently came a across a small company trying to carve out a name for itself in the holster business. Holster HQ is a small family owned company. If you want a holster you can count on then you should check these out. Our first review covered a specific IWB model. This review will be more about the company and the features Holster HQ has to offer.

Here is what we like about Holster HQ

1) Anyone can make a holster, but these guys make a great holster. Quality is at the core of everything they do. All the features you need in a lightweight package: custom fit, adjustable retention, different carry angles, waterproof, and tough.

2) Really cool accessories-most of their holsters come with what they call Tactical Multi bags. It looks like a small tactical ammo or dump drop bag. The bag could be used for 100 different items. We also like the mini microfiber cloth that comes with the holster.

3) Small, family owned, and American made-Their Facebook page says just a small family owned business. All the holsters are handmade in the U.S.A

4) Happy Customer Guarantee- I talked with the owner and it’s true if you’re not happy he will fix it. In his words “the way it should be, the way it used to be, if you’re not happy I’ll make it right”

5) We also really like how easy it is to take care of these Kydex- holsters. If you’re wearing a holster day in and day out it’s bound to collect some dust and debris. The instructions say to simply rinse underwater and dry at least once a month.

I carry one of these types of holsters on a daily basis. I probably wouldn’t have even heard of this company if I didn’t know these guys. I’m glad I do though and I was Happy to write this review for them. I know firsthand that they make really great products. If you’re looking for an IWB Holster you can wear every day, will last, and is custom made for your gun, Holster HQ is the answer. As mentioned before there are many companies making many different styles. If you your looking for something bigger, hybrid, convertible or an OWB style then you will have to look at other options. These guys specialize in compact IWB carry only and they do a great job at it.

Author: Mike Epson

I do product reviews for thesmartconsumer.and other sites on occasion. In my spare time I like to write about firearms and gun accessories. I have extensive training in self-defense and now specialize in concealed carry. Full disclosure-I’m not paid to write this, but I might be a little bias since I’ve met the owners of Holster HQ.


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