Ruger Holsters: Choosing the Right Holster For Your Ruger

LAST UPDATED: April 30th 2017
GUIDE: Chris Browning

Ruger Firearms makes an amazing range of pistols. Whether you carry a classic revolver or a more modern 9mm, most will agree that these are among the most well-manufactured guns on the market today.

Rugers are very popular amongst law enforcement professionals and civilians alike, and as a result there is a plethora of holsters available for them – everything from minimal concealment holsters to advanced tactical items that offer a full range of adjustments.

It goes without saying that if you’ve invested in a quality Ruger pistol, it’s worth getting a similarly advanced holster to carry it in. No matter which variant of Ruger you are carrying, a decent holster can help you get the best from your weapon, add value to your gun and improve your marksmanship.

Whether you want excellent concealment, advanced safety and locking features, or simply a hard-wearing holster that will last for many years, there is a holster for you.

The sheer popularity of Ruger pistols creates a bit of a problem, though – there are simply too many available!

Luckily, I’ve looked into it for you. After reading hundreds of reviews, talking to loads of people who take their Rugers really seriously, and trawling through seemingly endless forums full of people discussing the pros and cons of various holsters, I think I finally know which holster you should buy for your Ruger.

In my humble opinion, you should get the Blackhawk SERPA Concealment Holster. If you’ve got a Ruger P-85, P-89, or P-95, this is an amazing holster. The Kydex polymer used here means that this holster is not only secure, but will protect your weapon for years to come. In addition, the SERPA system offers superior weapon retention that will fir the requirements of professionals.

As long as your draw technique is correct, this holster offers a smooth and fast draw. The casing is cut down on the leading edge, allowing you to bring your weapon forward that split-second earlier, giving you an advantage where it counts. The holster also offers a full range of adjustments, so you can set it up exactly how you need it for your specifications.

In short, this holster offers all the features you would expect in a premium holster, at a price that is well within the means of civilian Ruger owners.

Our Review Process

The review process we use here at GND is designed to find the very best holsters from among the hundreds available for your Ruger. To do this, we rely on you. We know that we are but one small part of a huge and enthusiastic gun owners’ community, and that no one person can know everything.

For this review, therefore, we trawled through the endless forums on Ruger holsters, and talked to people who seemed particularly passionate, or particularly well-informed. After coming up with a short list of what appeared to be the best holsters for Ruger pistols, we ordered a load of them.

Then we have the fun part of this job – testing the holsters ourselves. We know that a lot of you really value the draw speed offered on holsters, or how comfortable they are, so we shot off a load of rounds drawing from these holsters, and walked around all day with the, strapped to us, all in the name of science.

The result, we think, is the bes list of the best ten holsters for your Ruger pistol available.

The Blackhawk SERPA Concealment Holster – Is It For You?

Well, probably. For this review, given the huge number of holsters available for your Ruger, I’ve had a bit of a hard time choosing the best one. Eventually, after much consideration, I chose this one because I think it offers the best value, and is suitable for people with all levels of experience in carrying a powerful weapon like a Ruger.

That said, it is not for everyone. First and foremost, make sure it fits your gun! For this review, I’ve focused mainly on holsters for the .380 and 40 cal Ruger pistols, because those are the most popular versions. If you have a different size, or have an unusual variant, please check that the holster you are considering fits your weapon. Don’t just assume these holsters will fit your weapon, and remember that the consequences of a poorly fitting holster can be severe.

Beyond this, bear in mind that if you are after the best possible concealment, this might not be the best holster to choose. It is a rigid body, IWB holster after all, and so concealing it whilst wearing a pair of shorts and a lightweight shirt is going to be difficult!

However, if this holster fits your Ruger, and you want a good mix of security and concealment, git offers the best value of the holsters we tested.

Best Ruger Holsters Reviews

Product Specs

Manufacturer:
Blackhawk

Type:
OWB Holster

Material:
Polycarbonate

Product Features

SERPA Security System

Loop or paddle

Level 2 retention

I recommend this OWB holster for a variety of different pistols, including the Ruger variants it is available for. I think, in general, it is one of the best concealed carry pistols on the market at the moment.

The SERPA system, which holds your pistol very securely but still releases in an intuitive and satisfying manner, is relied upon by many law enforcement and military personnel, and when it comes to weapon security I trust their judgement.

This system takes a bit of getting used to, however, and I know that some people complain it affects their draw speed. To this, I would point out that the draw on any holster is more dependent on practice than on the holster itself, and that a few hours down the range will convince you that it’s possible to get a quick draw with a SERPA holster.

In addition, this holster is my choice for many Ruger pistols holster for a number of other reasons:

  • The combination of Level 2 retention with concealed carry is extremely rare in any holster, let alone one for a serious Ruger. Everything from the audible click when you reholster your weapon, to the way in which this holster reinforces good draw technique, means it’s a great holster both the learn and compete with.
  • In addition, this holster comes as standard with two carrying configurations – you can either use the belt loop, or the included paddle. The paddle itself is well formed, and offers a very stabel platform for the holster.

As with any holster, however, there are some cons:

  • Like almost every other holster available for your Ruger, this one will not accommodate aftermarket accessories. Whilst some may find this annoying, in truth it is better to have a holster that fits your gun well rather than one that is so oversized it will take your scope.

Overall, in my opinion this is the best value holster for Ruger pistols available at the moment. If you are looking for all the security of a Level 2 retention holster, combined with an item that will give you a lightning-quick draw, this is it. In addition, the ability to adjust weapon retention, and the swap between paddle and belt loop configurations, means that this holster wins our top pick for Ruger pistols.

Product Specs

Manufacturer:
Concealment Express

Type:
IWB Holster

Material:
Kydex

Product Features

Custom molded

Kydex body

Great concealment

This is for .380 Rugers, and is the best choice for those. If you’ve got a slightly smaller Ruger, and are therefore looking for a holster that offers good concealment, you won’t be disappointed with this one.

Unlike a lot of minimal concealment holsters, this is a rigid-body holster, made of Kydex. This means that it is incredibly hardwearing, and will keep going for years after Nylon and even leather holsters have become unusable.

In addition, this holster has several advantages:

  • Because it is custom molded for .380 Rugers, the fit on the weapons we tested it with was great. The Kydex sheath completely covers the trigger mechanism of your Ruger, also, reducing the possiblity of accidental discharge.
  • In terms of concealment, this is the best holster we tested. The Kydex body is thin enough to give your holstered weapon a thin profile, thereby reducing printing to a minimum.

As with any holster, however, there are some cons:

  • Some people find that Kydex IWB holsters make them sweat a lot, because the material is not breathable. If that sounds like you, and you don’t need the extra protection of Kydex, it might be worth looking into a leather holster.

In general, this is a great holster, and only held from the top spot in this review because the SERPA system on Blackhawk holsters is so good. That said, when put up against almost any other holster, this is an amazing product. If you’ve got a .380 Ruger, this is the holster to go for.

Product Specs

Manufacturer:
Blade Tech

Type:
IWB Holster

Material:
Polymer

Product Features

Posi-click System

Great Concealment

Excellent fit for Ruger

Blade Tech make some seriously good holsters, and this is no exception. This holster is designed to carry 9mm Ruger variants, and as default uses an appendix carry configuration. However, the same holster can we worn IWB on your strong-side hip, meaning that essentially this is two holsters in one!

The fit around the 9mm Rugers we tested was great. It is clear that Blade Tech mold each holster individually, leading to superior weapon retention without compromizing your draw speed.

In addition, this holster has several advantages:

  • Unusually for a holster this minimal, it offers a posi-click system which emits an audible noise when your weapon is properly seated. This is a great feature for beginners and professionals alike, and offers the assurance that your gun is safely held.
  • The concealment offered by this holster is great, which is surprising given its size.

As with any holster, however, there are some cons:

  • At this price, not many. You don’t have adjustable cant or ride height with this holster, but for IWB appendix carry this doesn’t really matter.

If you want to carry a 9mm Ruger in an appendix configuration, get this holster. It offers an excellent fit on all the Rugers we tested, it hard-wearing, and feels very secure in every style of carry.

Product Specs

Manufacturer:
Alien Gear

Material:
Leather / Polymer

Color:
Black

Product Features

Great quality holster

Lifetime free shell swaps

Big price is a con

The only reason this is so far down the list is because it is a little more expensive than the other holsters we tested. That said, it still represents good value because it manages to pack in a load of amazing features. This holster is available for most Ruger 9mm pistols.

Primarily, the ride height, cant and retention are all adjustable, giving the maximum possible flexibility. This would also be the holster I would recommend if you are going to use your Ruger in competition, because these adjustments allow you to achieve those split-second gains that make all the difference.

In addition, this holster has several advantages:

  • The polymer construction requires no breaking-in time, so the holster is ready to go as soon as you get it. In addition, it feels incredibly tough, so we are sure it will provide many years of reliable service.
  • Alien Gear, as you might have heard, offer a lifetime of free (yes, free!) shell swaps for all their holsters. This is an amazing service, ensuring that if you decide to change your weapon in a few years, you can keep using the holster you are used to.

As with any holster, however, there are some cons:

  • Only the price, really. This is a fully featured holster that performs well in every respect, but is a little pricey in comparison to some of its rivals. That said, for the price you get an awful lot of holster!

This is perhaps the best holster we tested, and only falls down because of the price. If money is no object to you, get this one. It is especially good if you use your Ruger 9mm in competition, or if you merely like to carry your weapon in an unusual configuration.

Product Specs

Manufacturer:
DTOM

Type:
Pocket / IWB Holster

Material:
Nylon

Product Features

Fits pocket and IWB

Secure

Verstaile

This is a great little holster for Ruger .380 pistols, and offers a particular advantage over many other holsters available for any gun – the ability to swap between IWB and pocket carry.

This was a widely popular feature amongst those we spoke to for this review, because many people like to carry their Ruger .380 in a variety of situations. Actually, when used as a pocket holster this one performed better than many custom-designed poscket holsters.

In addition, this holster has several advantages:

  • The concealment offered by this holster is really quite good. It is quite thin, but the design also helps to break up the outline of your Ruger .380 pistol, reducing printing even when carried in the pocket.
  • For such a small holster, this one feels very secure when clipped on. No doubt this is due to the sturdy belt clip, which holds the holster well even when you have a bulky .380 strapped to you.

As with any holster, however, there are some cons:

  • Well, this holster lacks a thumb break, or any other form of locking mechanism. For this reason, I would not recommend it for inexperienced gun owners.

Overall, a great holster, and only this far down the list because it lacks some of the adaptability of more expensive holsters. However, if you’ve currently got two holsters for your Ruger .380, one IWB and one for your pocket, considering getting one that can do both.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will these holsters fit my Ruger?

This is a very difficult question to answer, because of the numerous variants Ruger pistols come in. I’ve tried, above, the give a good option for most Ruger owners, but not all these holsters will fit your weapon.

The best approach, to my mind, is to phone the manufacturer of the holster you want to buy, and check directly. This is especially true if you have an unusual gun, or have fitted aftermarket accessories.

How are these holsters in terms of concealment?

Some are good, some are bad. I’ve described above how each holster performs in this regard, but bear in mind that concealing your weapon is about far more than your holster. Wearing the correct clothes, and wearing your holster correctly, is far more important in terms of  reducing printing.

Will my scope / sight / red dots fit in these holsters?

No. If you’ve got aftermarket accessories like these fitted to your Ruger, you won’t be able to carry them attached to your gun. I know this is a disappointment to some people, but ultimately you should look for a holster that holds your weapon really well on an everyday basis, and save your advanced accessories for the range.

Conclusion

Every time I recommend my favorite holster, I get angry emails from people who hate the particular item I’ve chosen. I’m sure today will be no different. All of the holsters above are good in their own way, and offer good value for the price they are available for, but if you have specific needs no one review can ever address them all!

All that said, in my opinion if you are looking for a holster for your Ruger at the moment, you should get the Blackhawk SERPA Concealment Holster. If you’ve got a Ruger P-85, P-89, or P-95, this is an amazing holster. The rigid polymer it is composed of will last for years, even if you are carrying your Ruger every day, and it will not develop wear patches like some leather or nylon holsters.

In addition, the SERPA system used here offers great weapon security, which is one of the reasons this type of Blakchawk SERPA CQC holster is so popular amongst professional Ruger users. If you are using a Ruger for self defense, and think you are likely to come across some dangerous situations whislt wearing it, having a decent locking system on your holster is very important.

All in all, whilst not the cheapest or smallest holster available for your Ruger, I think this one offers the best value, incorporating features found on high-end, tactical holsters in a compact design that is within the reach of most amateur owners.