Just bought a Beretta pistol? Cool! The next crucial decision lies in choosing how to carry it. Beretta holsters come in various designs, which can be categorized based on intended use and material. We’ve asked our friends at one trusted store that offers a wide range of guns for sale (seriously, you’ll find everything from M4 and tactical shotguns to Henry rifles and good old revolvers) to prepare an article that explains how to choose a Beretta holster.
Beretta IWB & OWB Holsters
Belt holsters – encompassing Inside-the-Waistband (IWB), Outside-the-Waistband (OWB), and Paddle variants – are the most prevalent types of Beretta holsters. A significant advantage of this design is its enhanced adjustability. Users can modify the belt position, the ride (the point at which the holster attaches to the belt relative to the trigger), and the cant (the angle at which the handgun is positioned).
IWB holsters secure to a belt or pants, allowing you to carry your Beretta pistol inside your waistband. The majority of the pistol is concealed by your pants, with your upper garment covering the exposed grip. The level of printing and comfort largely depends on the size of the gun. Larger handguns may cause discomfort over prolonged periods and print through your clothing, while smaller pistols usually avoid such issues. However, accessing a firearm carried inside the waistband can be challenging for some, so regular practice of your draw is essential to ensure quick and efficient use of your weapon.
On the other hand, OWB holsters clip to the belt and are worn outside your waistband. These are not designed with concealment in mind, although, in colder climates, your clothing may provide some concealment. With an OWB holster, you can carry any size of a handgun. Plus, it will be easily accessible for a swift draw.
A subtype of the OWB holster is the Paddle holster, characterized by its paddle mechanism that enables quick detachment of the holster whenever desired. While this feature offers flexibility, as there’s no need to remove your belt to take it off, paddle holsters may pose a risk in close-action combat situations.
Now, let’s get practical. IWB may not be the best option for many people looking for a Beretta 92FS / M9 holster. It’s because the 92FS and the M9 are both full-size pistols with a barrel length of 4.9 inches, meaning they can be very uncomfortable to carry inside the waistband. The same concerns the Beretta M9A4 Centurion, a tactical version of the M9 boasting an optic cut slide, which means you’ll probably want to put a red dot on it. OWB, on the other hand, is just the right one for these models. Disadvantages? In some states, open-carry is illegal, plus there are safety concerns.
If carrying a full-size pistol isn’t an issue for you, and you want, say, a Beretta 92FS concealed carry holster, the company does offer some good options. Two-clip IWB holsters are the best of them as they distribute the weight of the firearm evenly over your belt to prevent sagging. If you’re a fan of leather holsters, you’ll be happy to know that there are Beretta 92FS IWB holsters with a flat rear profile to eliminate printing.
IWB would also be an excellent holster for the Beretta APX compact pistol with a barrel of 3.7 inches long as well as any other compact or subcompact pistol, for that matter.
Other Beretta Holsters for EDC
Beretta Shoulder Holsters
Akin to the design of a backpack, shoulder gun holsters have straps that wrap around your shoulders, with the holster itself hanging off to the side of your rib cage or under your armpit. This type is particularly comfortable for carrying larger guns, though concealment requires an overlying garment. That’s why it’s an ideal holster for the Beretta 96A1 pistol in 40 S&W, one of the largest handguns in the company.
One of the main advantages of this design is the ability to carry magazines or other accessories on the side opposite the pistol.
In comparison to belt gun holsters, shoulder holsters provide quicker and easier access to the gun when seated or driving. They also distribute the weight more evenly across your body, resulting in increased mobility.
Beretta Ankle & Pocket Holsters
Ankle gun holsters are attached to your ankle, and to effectively conceal them, loose-cut pants are required. Despite being one of the top designs for concealed carry, there are a few drawbacks. The most apparent is the difficulty in accessing the weapon; you need to bend down, lift your pant leg, and draw the pistol. And, of course, you won’t be able to carry large and even compact handguns. Ankle holsters are typically used for smaller backup pistols that are easier to conceal and carry while moving, driving, or running.
Pocket holsters are designed to fit in a pocket assisting in concealing the weapon by breaking up its outline. These are also typically used for carrying small handguns.
To sum up, if you’re looking for a Beretta Tomcat holster, ankle and pocket holsters are the best options. A pocket holster can also be an excellent option for the Beretta APX A1 Carry.
Choose the Right Material for Your Beretta Holster
Leather holsters have been a popular choice for gun owners for centuries. They provide an excellent balance between stiffness and flexibility, ensuring a secure grip on your Beretta while still allowing for a smooth draw. Leather also offers superior next-to-skin comfort, making it ideal for concealed carry situations where the holster may be in direct contact with your body for extended periods. However, leather holsters do require more maintenance to prevent degradation. Regular cleaning and conditioning of the leather are necessary to keep it soft, pliable, and long-lasting.
Kydex (Plastic) Holsters
Another common material used in Beretta holsters is Kydex, a type of molded plastic. Kydex holsters are lightweight, rigid, and durable. They maintain their shape even under extreme conditions, which ensures a consistent and reliable draw. Plus, they’re low-maintenance; unlike leather, they don’t require frequent cleaning or conditioning. They can withstand harsh environments and resist scratches, making them a great choice for tactical or outdoor use.