What Is The Best Kydex IWB Holster in 2017?

It’s difficult to find the best gun holster to fit your gun. Trust me. I’ve gone through dozens of holsters trying to find the ideal mixture of comfort and functionality.

Time and time again, I’d find the holster would feel great at first, until it came time for all day wear. Something had to give. I knew I wasn’t willing to trade my comfort for my gun any longer.

Concealed carry holsters made with Kydex that go inside the waistband solve the problem for many Americans with their combination of durability and versatility.

Things to Consider Before Buying a Kydex Holster

Gun holsters are the ideal way for you to carry your gun throughout the day either in a concealed environment or plain view. Gun holsters keep your gun locked in a secure position for safe keeping all while being ready at a moment’s notice. (1)

An inner waistband gun holster may be right for you if you’re looking for a versatile piece that can be worn in just about any carry position. Most are ideal for appendix wear but can also feel good on your hip, side or back all day long.

Because your holster is the only thing between you and your gun, it’s considered a vital accessory. If your gun holster doesn’t fit your requirements, you could end up feeling uncomfortable throughout the day.

IWB gun holsters have a lower profile and can be used in a conceal carry situation. However, they are not as secure of a fit as other styles. You may want to think about choosing a paddle style holster instead if you plan to be active while wearing your gun.

Before you go out and purchase any old gun holster, there are a few things you need to take into consideration. Ask yourself some of the following questions before you buy.

  • What size gun do I have?
  • Will the holster be cozy to wear all day long?
  • Is the gun holster compatible with where I want to use it?
  • Will it be lightweight and easy to use?
  • Does it have a secure locking mechanism?
  • What will be the best material?
  • Will it be easy to wear in both winter and summer seasons?

Shopping around and thinking about each of these questions while looking at each gun can save you both time and money. Otherwise, you might end up with a gun that is virtually useless for your needs.

About Kydex Inside-the-Waistband (IWB) Holsters

Popular Kydex IWB Holsters claim to give you the most custom fit of any other holster on the market. Between the numerous ways to adjust it to your gun as well as your needs, it comes pretty close.

The inner waistband style gun holster has been around for a while. However, the Kydex version is one of the most versatile yet. You have the ability to adjust the carry angle, ride height, and retention to your desire so you can keep your gun at a safe angle until ready to use. (2)

While the Blackhawk Serpa Line currently remains the industry leader, Kydex is steadily increasing its popularity among gun owners across the country thanks to its scratch and water resistant capabilities.

Kydex holsters can provide you with something lightweight and comfortable. Made in the USA with only quality components, this holster should last as long as you need it.

Be aware that like all IWB holsters, if you are one of those guys with a few extra pounds around the waist, the Kydex holster can dig into your skin after a while. You may want to think about a different holster style if you plan to wear it all day long.

  • Adjustable carry angle.
  • Flexible ride height.
  • Posi-Click AR Lock System keeps the gun secure.
  • Suitable for multiple carry positions.
  • It’s made in the USA.


  • Button to release magazine is not covered.
  • It’s not a tuckable holster.
  • Inability to cross draw.
  • Uncomfortable in the sitting position too long.


overview of kydex iwb holster

Features and Benefits of Kydex IWB Holsters

Kydex IWB Gun Holsters offer some features that most others don’t have..

Let’s take a look at some of the benefits that make these some of the best gun holsters on the market today.

Adjustable Everything

Kydex holsters that go inside the waistband can be adjusted to accommodate your needs as a shooter. No matter your preference, you should be able to find a comfortable fit that works for you.

Adjust your carry angle to the appropriate degree according to where you wear it. With an extensive range of motion, you can move the can’t to anywhere from 0-15 degrees. Keep in mind that there is not enough cant in this gun holster to allow for cross draw.

Choose your preferred level of retention so you can have quick access to your gun while maintaining a secure fit. Whether you prefer to have your gun nice and snug or like it a loose fit, you’ll be ready.

Finally, you can adjust the ride height to each outfit or carry position. Many other gun holsters are lacking in this department and cannot be aligned.

If this is an important feature for you be sure to check with the manufacturer’s packaging on each holster you plan to purchase to see if the ride height can be changed.

Watch this short YouTube video to learn how quick it is to create the customized fit you want with the turn of a screw.

Comfortable IWB System

Weighing a little less than 3 ounces, you will hardly notice wearing this lightweight holster. The thin but durable Kydex can be easily concealed and worn in a variety of positions.

You can use the spring steel tuckable clip to attach your gun to any number of positions. The clip fits a 1.5-inch belt. However, it will work fine for a 1.25-2 inch as well.

You’d be hard pressed to find someone that could tell you were wearing this concealed piece.

This gun holster allows for optimal comfort for everything from sitting in the office, to driving, and even during active use such as running.

If you plan to wear this gun holster on a hot day, you may want to consider wearing an undershirt alongside it to prevent chafing from sweat.

On that same note, if you are on the larger side, you may want to look for a design made of a softer material to prevent it from irritating your skin.

comfortable kydex for iwb holsters concealed carry

Versatile Design

Kydex IWB Gun Holsters are ideal for wearing on the appendix.

Manufacturers of these particular holsters have also created versions for the south-paws among us. Before purchasing keep in mind the position, you’ll be using the holster in the most. Practice drawing the gun from that position. Doing so will help you determine which side you’d like the clip to be on this gun holster.

Whether you wear this inner waistband gun holster on your hip, appendix, back, or ankle, you’ll be ensured of a snug fit throughout the day.

carrying kydex holster left handed inside belt

A Safe, Secure Fit

A gun holster is just as important to gun safety as having your gun regularly having it serviced and maintained. (3) The best gun holsters will have some sort of a locking mechanism.

Most Kydex holsters uses a Posi-Click AR Lock System that allows you to secure your gun in place gently. When inserting your gun into the holster, you’ll notice a slight clicking sound that lets you know your weapon is holstered properly.

These holsters promotes gun safety by keeping the trigger area fully covered. You may notice that the button release to the magazine is accessible. However, it is not vulnerable as it is with some other gun holsters.

You’ll be able to lock your gun in place with the easy to use system and be assured that your gun stays where you want it even with continuous movement.

securely tucked glock inside kydex holster waistband

Structural Integrity

These style of holsters are made in the USA, so you know you’re getting high-end components. Gun holsters that are built to last. Designed and engineered with only the best quality parts.

Between the spring steel tuckable clip made of the strongest plastic possible, and the durable 0.08-inch-thick Kydex you’re getting a superior gun holster that stands apart from the rest.

The Sweat-Shield was designed to guide your gun easily into the holster while allowing you to keep it dry. The Kydex Gun Holster won’t scratch or leave signs of wear and tear on your gun like some of its cheaper competitors. Buffing out scratches can cost you big bucks to fix.

how strong is kydex? up close with iwb holster

Our Top Pick

With all that in mind, remember that the best holster is the one that you’re most comfortable with. It’s also the one that’s tailor made for your gun.

As such, there’s no “Best Kydex Holster” — rather, there are a handful to choose from.

That said, after testing nearly 300 holsters over the course of almost 578 man hours on the range, our top overall pick is the is the Concealment Express KYDEX IWB Gun Holster, fitting the Smith & Wesson M&P SHIELD 9 / 40.

It’s extremely comfortable, durable, and comes in at a reasonable price.

This is an excellent CCW holster for appendix carry, and I found that the belt clip is super secure.

What Other People Are Saying

After scouring the internet, I was hard pressed to find a negative review of the Concealment Express. Instead, people are going nuts over this minimalist little piece.

With raves like ‘LOVE IT!’ and ‘Perfect amount of retention’ from novices and hardcore gun owners alike, you have to admit it’s popularity. Many claim they wear this gun holster on a daily basis without complaint.


Alternatives to Kydex IWB Gun Holsters

Still not sure if a Kydex IWB gun holster is right for you? You may want to take a look at a few other alternatives before making your final decision. Below is a list of several of the best gun holster contenders so that you can see how they compare.

#1 Blackhawk! SERPA Concealment Holster

This paddle gun holster allows you to keep your gun at your side even in a scuffle. Because it loops through your belt, it is not going anywhere, unlike the Kydex model.

You’ll appreciate the audible click, similar to the Kydex IWB, that comes with this gun. This holster is perfect for the guy or gal on the go or for any users that have an active lifestyle.

Unfortunately, this gun is often too bulky to be used as a reliable, IWB concealed carry holster. Unless you plan to use this gun holster under a lot of clothing, you’re going to get some attention.

How Does It Compare To Kydex? (Rating 4.5/5)

Paddle style, ideal for active users. Not as easily concealed as some Kydex models.

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

#2 Barsony Gun Concealment Holster

An American made, lightweight inner waistband gun holster that is both functional and stylish. You’ll
appreciate the secure, comfortable fit that the suede provides. In fact, the suede may be slightly more
cozy of a fit than its Kydex competitors.

If old-school style is what’s important to you, this might be your best bet. However, some people still prefer the sleek design of the Kydex’s. Ultimately, it’s up to you to determine which has the better look.

One drawback to this cost-effective gun holster is the flap on the upper portion of the holster. It can
catch on things as you move, pulling the clip loose.

How Does It Compare To Kydex? (Rating 4.5/5)

Good IWB option. Comfortable and stylish. Not ideal for active, on-the-go shooters.

Overall Rating: 3.5/5

Closing Thoughts

Choosing the right gun holster for your needs can be a daunting task with all the available options on the market today. Either it doesn’t have the right cant for your needs, or doesn’t fit your gun securely in place like you want.

Do your homework before you go out and purchase one to ensure you find the best gun holster to fit your expectations. Ideally, you want something with the perfect combination of functionality and comfort.

If you’re like me and want a gun holster that will be completely customizable, then the Kydex IWB Holster may be your best bet. You can wear this gun holster in just about any position with a little modification.

  1. National Shooting Sports Foundation – 10 Rules Of Gun Safety
  2. NRA Gun Safety Rules
  3. Holster Treatment – TacticalGear.com