Before we dive into a topic every wannabe gun writer and their grandmother has written about lets set the record straight. What works for me might not work for you. These are just tips.
I’ll start off with an admittedly bold statement gun writers are paid not to make.
The most important part of your concealed carry gear isn’t the gun.
Now the gun is important, no doubt, but your holster and belt are more important. If you can’t carry your gun securely and comfortably you’re way less likely to carry it. Marcus Wynne, former Federal Air Marshall, author, and high level instructor, is a huge advocate of quality holsters and he knows tons more than I ever will. In every one of his books he talks about the importance of a good holster.
A poor holster can cause minor problems like premature wear on guns and major problems like the gun falling out. There are tons of great holsters out there made of multiple materials. Gone are the days of the only good holsters being made from leather. I still prefer leather because it’s proven but don’t discount other materials.
The belt you choose is just as important as the gun. If you can’t hold your holster and pants securely you’re just as dangerous as the situation you might need the gun in. Again, leather is the most popular and by far the most attractive. Belt width and common sense also comes into play, if you have a 1.5inch wide holster and a 2inch wide belt that’s just not going to work. Many people, including myself, have made this mistake and had to return the holster in shame.
Now, finally, let’s talk guns. The gun you choose to carry is completely up to you. You should do your research both online and in person, shoot the gun you’re thinking about carrying early and often, and avoid one gun. That gun is any 1911 chambered in .45acp with a barrel shorter than 4inches. 1911’s are fantastic guns for just about any job but ones with a barrel shorter than 4inches are notoriously unreliable. So unless you like stovepipes and failure-to-feeds stay away, far away. Any other type of gun that you can conceal comfortably and is reliable will be fine. .380 pocket pistols up to 44 magnum, doesn’t matter, if you will carry it that’s what matters. I would avoid any caliber smaller than .380 however, they just don’t pack enough punch. I’ve carried almost every popular kind and brand of handgun available except for a .44 magnum but if I were to find myself in bear country in late fall/early winter I’d carry one of those too!
My current carry gear is a Glock 19 just behind my right hip, a glock 26 on my left ankle. My carry preferences change constantly. Weather, where I’ll be, whim, and what I’ll be doing all effect what I’ll be carrying. But I’ll guarantee one thing, I will be armed.
Now I’m right handed and carry my G26 on my left ankle which is contrary to what most people suggest. My main reason for doing this is that if my right arm becomes unusable I can easily access the gun with my left. If I were only carrying the 26 it would be carried on my left ankle.