Best J Frame Pocket Holster – Top Five Picks [Buying Guide 2022]

You are the owner of a J frame revolver and you are in the market for a pocket holster. You may be asking yourself, what is the best J frame pocket holster?

I’ve done the research for you and came up with a few of the best J frame pocket holsters. My top pick is the DeSantis Nemesis.

This holster is just about a sticky as flypaper. It won’t move around in your pocket. The inside material is smooth for a quick draw, and the core has some foam to break up the outline of your gun.


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The J Frame Revolver

The J frame is probably the most popular concealed carry handgun of all time. It is the smallest class of the current Smith & Wesson handgun line, and is what people think of when they hear the turn snub nose revolver.

Back in 1894, when Smith & Wesson developed swing out cylinder revolvers, there were two models, the K and the I. The terms K frame and I frame were internal names that Smith & Wesson employees used to distinguish between the two revolvers.

The real names were much longer and employees felt they needed to make up smaller nicknames for convenience.

The employees started using the nicknames to writers and the public started picking up on it. The frame letter identifies Smith & Wesson revolvers to this day.

In 1950 the J frame was introduced. In 1960 the I frame was discontinued so all their smaller frame revolvers have been the J frame since that time. Over the years there have been many revolvers that are called J frames because they are based on the same size frame.

Currently, the J frame line includes models that are chambered for .22LR, .22 Magnum, .38 Smith & Wesson Special, and .357 Magnum.

Carrying A J Frame Revolver

Carrying a J frame is an easy thing to do. The biggest decision you will have to make is how you want to carry it, based on what activity you will be doing. Then pick your clothes to match the way you would like to carry. Then you’ll be on your way.


Carrying a modern J frame revolver, with the hammer down, means you can carry it in just about any manner, safely. You can drop this revolver in any holster, purse, pocket, or backpack and not worry about the gun accidentally firing since the hammer block keeps the firing pin from hitting the case primer until the trigger is pulled.


The main thing you have to think about when carrying a J frame is how and where you will carry it so that it is easily accessible.

Pocket Carry

Pocket holsters are growing in popularity. They are designed to have rough or sticky material on the outside to stay in your pocket. They are made with a smooth material on the inside, in order to have a smooth draw.

They fit in the front pocket of cargo type pants or even in the back pocket of jeans. They will fit in some jeans front pockets, but some may be too small for a pocket holster. Some are shaped to look like a wallet or some other case, while inside your pocket.

Pros And Cons of Pocket Carry

As with other types of carrying a handgun, there are advantages and disadvantages of pocket carrying. The advantages definitely outweigh the disadvantages.


Pocket carry is very comfortable. With other types of carrying you have to get used to carrying around a foreign object that may be heavier than things you are used to carrying. Most people are used to carrying things in their pocket. It comes natural to place things in your pocket.

It’s convenient. You don’t have to worry too much about your wardrobe besides having pockets big enough to hold your holster and firearm. No need for extra belts, bigger sized pants, long shirts, or sports jackets.

Pocket carrying conceals very good. Quality pocket holsters are made to conceal the shape of your gun. Most people expect you to carry stuff in your pocket so any kind of bulge that is seen in your pocket goes without suspicion.

You may be able to draw much quicker from your pocket. The motion to get into your pocket and pull your gun out is a very natural motion. There is no need to lift shirts or open jackets before drawing.

With pocket carry you can pre stage your draw. While you don’t want to always be putting your hand on your gun, doing so in a heated moment looks natural and not suspicious.


It can be a little more difficult to get to your gun in a stressful situation. If you are stressed it may be awkward to shove your hand in your pocket.

Pocket carry limits the size of the handgun you are able to carry. Unless you are carrying a subcompact or compact gun, pocket carry will be extremely difficult and uncomfortable.

As you can see, the advantages outweigh the disadvantages with pocket carry. Let’s check out some of the top picks for J frame pocket holsters.

Top Pocket Holsters for J-Frame

1. Desantis Nemesis Holster

Desantis Nemesis Pocket HolsterDeSantis has a great reputation. They are known for really good pocket holsters. They stand behind their products since they use quality materials.


  • Ambidextrous
  • Made in USA
  • Foam core breaks up shape of gun


  • Fits J frames perfectly
  • Covers full trigger guard
  • Any visible appearance looks like a cell phone
  • Doesn’t move around
  • Nice draw


  • Difficult in tight jeans

2. UTG Pocket Holster

This pocket holster is open top, has no slip bands, and a side extra pocket for cash or credit cards.


  • Ambidextrous
  • Front or back pocket storage
  • Non slip bands
  • Open top
  • Ultimate pistol protection


  • Stays in pocket while drawing gun
  • Extra pocket can hold ammo
  • Fits casual pants pocket perfectly
  • Comfortable
  • Keeps gun upright
  • Made well


  • Can be a little difficult to draw
  • Slit makes trigger accessible
  • Bulky

3. Uncle Mike’s Open Top Pocket Holster

Inside the Pocket Holsters by Uncle Mike’sThis holster provides protection for the gun and your clothing. It is an open top design that prevents movement of gun levers, buttons, or catches that may happen with loose pocket carry.


  • Protects gun and clothing
  • Cushion leg
  • No printing
  • Open top grip up design
  • Non-slip bands


  • Full grip in pocket
  • Stays put
  • Comfortable
  • Affordable
  • Quality construction
  • Low maintenance


  • Will move around in larger pockets
  • Opening at top seems a little small
  • Will come out in cargo pockets

4. Safariland Pocket Holster

Safariland Model 25 Inside-the-Pocket HolsterThis pocket holster has a reinforced inner lining to allow the top to stay open when empty. Features a moisture proof membrane that keeps sweat from getting to your handgun.


  • Extra thin
  • Extra soft
  • Moisture proof membrane
  • Suede outer material
  • Stays open



  • Will move in larger pockets
  • Outer material isn’t very sticky
  • Bottom of holster is open so lint can get in gun

5. Bianchi Pocket Holster

Bianchi 152 Pocket Piece Pocket HolsterThis holster is a great option for those looking to pocket carry. It is made of full grain leather and will break up the shape of the gun. Two hooks help keep it in place while in your pocket.


  • Right or left hand option
  • Leather interior for smooth draw
  • Suede exterior to stick in pocket
  • Pocket hooks for enhanced security


  • Well made
  • Keeps gun upright
  • Comfortable
  • Stays put during draw


  • Stiff feeling
  • Can be a bit bulky when sitting down
  • Too thick for a front pocket

Final Thoughts

As you know there are many ways to carry your J frame. Deciding to pocket carry is a good decision. Finding the best holster for your J frame revolver is a big decision.

Our Pick
 Desantis Nemesis Pocket Holster
Best J Frame Pocket HolsterDeSantis Nemesis

DeSantis has a great reputation. They are known for really good pocket holsters. They stand behind their products since they use quality materials.

Check Price

There are a lot of good pocket holsters for your J frame. I did find the DeSantis Nemisis to outshine the others. It just works great. It has an extremely fast and smooth draw from your front pocket.

It’s just like going for your wallet or cell phone. Made durable, by a company that is a leader in their industry, this holster may help you feel secure knowing your gun is safe and stable and ready to be used if a situation were to arise.

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Chris Browning

Hey everyone I'm Chris. Founder and editor at Gun News Daily. This site was originally started by my father who passed it on to me. Gun News Daily has been reporting on gun news and conservative politics since 2001. We are the original gun news source. Life-long Second Amendment Supporter.

2 thoughts on “Best J Frame Pocket Holster – Top Five Picks [Buying Guide 2022]

  1. I bought the Desantis for my Taurus 85 Ultra-Lite revolver based on this review. The recommendation was spot on. The fit is perfect, and the carry is great. The gun disappears in the front pocket of my shorts, yet draws easily. This was a very good review!

  2. Is there a certain kind of pocket holster that may be the best for a nickel J frame revolver? For example, is a kydex holster a better choice than leather or nylon holsters for nickel guns?

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