Top 10 Tips for Concealed Carry
There are plenty of reasons why more and more people are choosing to conceal carry in 2021 than ever before, but knowing how to best conceal carry is a whole other topic for discussion. Choosing to conceal carry over other carry methods has its pros and cons, so knowing how to best approach your concealed carry technique, gear and setup is crucial and could potentially save your life, or someone else’s.
We break down The Top 10 Tips for Concealed Carry right here...
1. Pick the right Gun - for You!
So many guns, so few bullets. You have to start by finding the firearm that best suits your needs, tastes and situation. Some folks prefer a gun with more weight, or less weight, more compact, or full size, how the handle feels, how it fires and recoils, then reloads, the available accessories, and of course, the cost. Focus on selecting a caliber that is powerful enough to get the job done, while also being controllable. The goal here is to find the right gun that’s not just accurate, but also comfortable in your hand or on your waist. Some classic go-to firearms include the Glock-19 or a Glock 17 if you prefer a bit bigger construction. Other popular picks in 2021 include Smith & Wesson M&P Shield (or their EZ piece) and the Taurus G2C or Ruger LCP II. The best way to figure this all out is to visit a local gun shop with a large variety of firearms to choose from and knowledgeable staff. You need to get educated and fire a few.
Pro Tip: Attachments are cool to add on your firearm whether it be for cosmetics, functionality, or performance. You can get lost in all the possibilities so start out simple until you get a better grip on the gun you go with each time.
2. Get the Right Holster
After your gun is dialed in, you need the perfect holster to go along with it. The holster you choose is just as much a personal choice as your gun, belt, shirt, and pants. Go with a holster that completely covers the trigger-guard (for safety). Feel free to test a few out and take your time to figure out what you like. We suggest if you carry Outside Waistband (OWB) be sure your clothing choice that day provides plenty of cover (ie, larger, longer shirt or jacket), so your setup doesn’t “print” (bulge thru your shirt) and give up the “conceal” aspect of carry. Usually best to try going IWB (inside) or even AIWB (appendix) carry near your junk.
The two primary holster versions are those in kydex and leather. Kydex is molded thermoplastic that’s fitted specifically to each gun style and model. This allows you for a ‘snap’ fit and more security. Some even have finger releases to prevent accidents. Many of these holsters must be ordered with longer lead times. Leather is the softer, more natural choice with a less molded fit, but provides a natural feel and may lend itself to more than one gun model.
Pro Tip: avoid cutting cost corners here especially if you plan to carry frequently. A good holster means more security and more comfort.
3. Get a 'Real' Gun Belt
We are not saying this simply because we make the World’s Best gun belts (but we do) – we’re saying it because we know the value of a solid, supportive, high quality belt that can firmly hold your holstered firearm right where you want it. Our Kore Essentials belts meet this challenge and more. Shameless promo inserted here: Our belts use a proprietary Power-Core center that’s stronger than steel and yet totally flexible for all day comfort. Then we use a micro adjustable track with 40+ size positions that’s hidden on the back of the belt. The track lets you loosen and tighten the belt in small increments for a “perfect fit”. Kore belts eliminate sag and hold your holster firmly in place, so when you go to draw - the belt doesn’t ride up with the gun. It really is the best fitting, most comfortable gun belt you will ever wear. But of course there are a ton of alternate gun belt options on the market, from thick leather gun belts, to nylon web belts with velcro and formidable buckles. Everyone has their favorite you will have to experiment like the rest of us to find your preference.
Pro Tip: You can see the World’s Best Gun Belts here >> https://www.youtube.com/user/korebrand
4. Training, Training and guess what - More Training
Waiting for “the” moment where you may actually need to use your gun is not the time to practice drawing. The best way to get started - take firearms safety class. Why not learn how to handle and use a gun safely from a pro? It’s not fun if you accidentally shoot yourself. Then spend 5-10 minutes a day dry-firing in front of the mirror with your unloaded gun. Practice with a two-handed grip, then switch to your strong hand. Finish with your support hand. These dry runs will help you get a taste of a potential scenario where your conceal carry becomes a lifesaving event. Although ammo is pricey and scarce, get your actual live fire reps as well, nothing can simulate actual recoil. So a trip to the range every month or so is essential. And when you do practice, train with your entire EDC setup, know exactly where everything is. Keep your spare mag in the same spot, pen in the same spot. It becomes muscle memory when knowing where something will always be. Who knows, maybe you’ll even meet a friend and fellow enthusiast, that’s never bad.
Pro Tip: Stress training can really prepare you for an active situation where you need to stay calm. Train under stressful situations so you can learn to handle a real-time situation better.
5. Firearm Attachments
We mentioned this before, but want to focus a bit more on how to do this right. Some brands need the upgrades to make them better and some don’t. Knowing the difference can save you money when getting setup. Glocks are arguably the best out of the box and you could risk some malfunctions when changing internals. So be careful and do your research before you put something on your weapon. There are pros and cons to having a weapon mounted light (for example), but either way, we recommend always carrying a hand held EDC light. I would also add, get yourself some extra mags, with a mag pouch to hang on your belt, or get a holster that handles 1-2 extra mags.
6. Don’t Get Twitchy
The last thing you want when out in public with your concealed setup is touching, adjusting, and messing with your setup or clothes all the time. Don’t make this rookie move - get the right gear, get your setup down and get the clothing worked out BEFORE you head out. If you need to adjust, do it in private. Nervous movements tend to attract eyes.
7. One in the Chamber
Always carry with one in the chamber, you won't have time in a real scenario to rack, press check, etc. Most modern firearms are made to carry one in the chamber and still be safe internally with falls, hits etc. (which won't have a random round fire off). The only fear you should have with one in the chamber - is if you have no trigger discipline. If that’s a problem, you probably shouldn't be carrying a gun to begin with, or you definitely need more safety training.
8. Dress Right for Concealed Carry
Wearing the right clothes matters when concealing your firearm. The weapon of choice (and your fashion preferences) will help to identify how you should be dressing. In the most general sense, wearing a long shirt or jacket that covers the gun (without hugging too tightly) and wearing the appropriate sized pants go a long way. Do your dry fire draw practice with the clothes you plan on wearing. If you dry run and see the gun printing or other noticeable markers in your attire - it is time to change. And don’t walk around like you’re carrying, others may pick up on that. Avoid filling those tactical pants with your entire EDC lineup, stay away from shirts that are 2x to big and your molle covered backpack. That is an instant giveaway. Unless you want to be a martyr.
Pro Tip: Wearing pattern shirts are the best at hiding your piece.
9. Be Responsible and Polite
It’s important to know where you're going and the potential environment beforehand. If by chance you encounter a hostile environment, it’s best to leave. Always retreat if possible and if you can’t do your best to deescalate bad situations. But unfortunately there are those who like to insert themselves into other people's affairs. If you’re looking for trouble - you will most likely find trouble. Hold yourself to a higher standard, be polite and keep your mouth out of stupid conversations or arguments. Your firearm is your LAST RESORT. Using it will change your life.
10. Know your local laws and every state’s laws you pass through
Know your state’s firearm laws, study your rights, and learn everything you can possibly learn about carry laws. And never, ever travel to another state with a firearm without knowing their firearm laws as well. That goes double for another country. For example, you could be in Utah with an AR pistol in your bag and your concealed firearm on your waist, travel over to California or some other 2A unfriendly states, and catch yourself a couple felonies. Don’t be that guy. Study up and stay out of trouble.
BONUS CARRY POINTS
Insurance, Insurance, Insurance! Get insurance because the moment you decide to engage your target, you’re most likely going to jail that day along with having your firearm confiscated. So shut up, grab your lawyer, and point out the nifty insurance plan you took out BEFORE you went out.
As always, your best setup is a planned setup so get out there, carry often, and prep for a variety of situations. There is no excuse to not carry, so get used to carrying because it may be the situation you least wanted but were the most prepared for when you walk out the door next.