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Best OWB holsters in 2022 – Top 8 Outside The Waistband Holsters

If you’re in the market for a new holster, you may be wondering what the best option is. In this article, we will discuss the best OWB holsters on the market.

We’ll cover all of the different types of holsters available and help you choose the one that’s best for you. So whether you’re looking for a concealed carry holster or an open carry holster, we’ve got you covered!

Table of Contents

What Is an OWB Holster?

An OWB, or outside the waistband, holster is a type of gun holster that is positioned on the outside of the user’s waistband.

This positioning allows for quick and easy access to the weapon, as well as greater comfort when compared to inside the waistband holsters.

However, OWB holsters are not always the most concealable option and may require loose-fitting clothing to properly cover the holster and gun. 

What To Look For When Buying an OWB holster?

When selecting an OWB holster,  there are a few things you should keep in mind such as:

  • Fitment – Make sure that the holster is specifically designed for your make and model of gun. Also, the holster should fit snugly around the gun, with no looseness or gaps. It should also allow for a full range of motion so that you can draw and reholster the gun without any issues.
  • Holster type – There are two main types of OWB holsters: paddle and belt. Paddle holsters are easier to put on and take off, but they can be less secure than belt holsters. Belt holsters provide a more secure fit, but they can be more difficult to put on and take off. 
  • Concealment – You should consider how much concealment you need. If you are looking for a holster to use for open carry, then concealment is not as important. However, if you want to use the holster for concealed carry, then you will want to choose a holster that offers good concealment options and is as low profile as possible.
  • Retention –  Retention is one of the key considerations when purchasing an OWB holster. Retention is the ability of the holster to keep the gun secure while being worn.  In general, there are two types of retention devices: passive and active. Passive retention devices, such as friction fit or molded holsters, rely on friction to keep the gun in place. Active retention devices, such as thumb breaks or trigger guards, use a release mechanism that must be disengaged before the gun can be drawn. When choosing a retention device, it is important to consider your level of training and experience.
  • Durability and material – You want a holster that will be able to stand up to wear and tear, and that won’t fall apart after just a few uses. There are a few different materials that are typically used for holsters, and each has its own advantages and disadvantages.
    • Leather is perhaps the most popular choice for holsters, as it is sturdy and good-looking. However, leather can be susceptible to water damage, and it may require more maintenance than other materials.
    • Kydex is another popular choice for holsters, as it is extremely durable and resistant to both water and heat. However, Kydex can be hard to clean, and it may not be as comfortable to wear as other materials.
    • Nylon is often used for budget-friendly holsters, as it is inexpensive and generally quite durable. However, nylon is not as resistant to water damage as other materials, and it may not hold up as well over time.
  • Comfort – You will be wearing your holster all day, so it is important to choose one that is comfortable.
  • Modularity and adjustability – Modularity refers to the ability to easily swap out different parts of the holster, such as the belt loop or retention strap. This allows you to customize the fit of the holster to your individual needs. Adjustability, on the other hand, refers to the ability to change the cant or ride height of the holster. This is important for both comfort and concealability. 
  • Ride height – Ride height is the distance from the top of the hip to the center of the holster. The ideal ride height will place the gun just below the hip bone, allowing for a comfortable and natural draw. In addition, ride height affects concealability. A higher ride height will result in more of the gun being exposed, making it more difficult to conceal. Conversely, a lower ride height will make it easier to conceal the gun.

Quick View of the Best OWB holsters

#ImageProductScoreBrowse
1Best OWB holster 6376 ALS® Concealment Holster6376 ALS® Concealment Holster9.4check price
2Best For Conclead carry Concealment Express OWB Paddle KYDEX HolsterConcealment Express OWB Paddle KYDEX Holster9.2check price
3SAFARILAND, 7378, CONCEALMENT PADDLE HOLSTERSafariland 7378 Concealment Paddle Holster9.2check price
4DeSantis Speed Scabbard Leather OWB Belt HolsterDeSantis Speed Scabbard Leather OWB Belt Holster9check price
5Galco Combat Master Leather Belt HolsterGalco Combat Master Leather Belt Holster9check price
6Outlaw Holsters OWB Holster Outlaw Holsters OWB Holster8.75check price
7Comp-Tac International Outside The Waistband HolsterComp-Tac International Outside The Waistband Holster8.75check price
8IMI-Defense TLH Tactical LightLaser Gun HolsterIMI-Defense TLH Tactical Light/Laser Gun Holster8check price

Best overall: 6376 ALS® Concealment Holster

The Safariland 6376 ALS is a great OWB holster for anyone looking for a strong and secure option for carrying their firearm. It can be used for both open carry and concealed carry.

This holster comes in both belt slide and paddle versions and features the Automatic Locking System (ALS). ALS stands for the automatic locking system, and the gun is locked the second it’s placed in the holster.

This system locks the firearm securely in place when holstered but still allows a natural draw with a swipe of the thumb release as you establish your grip.

This OWB holster offers really great retention and is perfect for those who want a little extra security when carrying their firearm. I’ve used this holster for both duty and concealed carry, and it’s worked great for me in both roles.

The construction is high quality, and it’s very comfortable to wear. The SafariLaminate™ construction makes this holster extremely durable and resistant to the elements. It’s also thermally molded to fit your firearm perfectly, ensuring a snug and secure fit. The inside of the holster is lined with smooth SafariSuede™ to protect your firearm’s finish and its front sight

The slim and low-profile design of the 6376 ALS  makes it a great option for concealment.

All-in-all, the Safariland 6376 ALS is a great option for anyone looking for an OWB holster. It offers great retention, is comfortable to wear, and is constructed from high-quality materials.

From my perspective, the Safariland 6376 ALS is currently the best OWB holster on the market!

Product Specs:

  • Price range:  $59-$75
  • Retention type: Active
  • Holster type: Paddle/ belt mounted
  • Material: Polymer

Pros

  • Great retention
  • Can be used for open or concealed carry
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Durable construction
  • Low profile design
  • Bulky
  • Still considered a “duty holster” so its harder to conceal

OUR RATING

We review our products on a 1 to 10 scale. The higher the score the better the product quality in the performance category.

Performance CategoryRating Score
Retention10
Durability9.75
Comfort9
Adjustability9
Overall Score9.4
Product rating table

Best For Conclead carry: Concealment Express OWB Paddle KYDEX Holster

The Concealment Express OWB paddle holster is one of the best OWB kydex holsters on the market today. If you’re looking for an outside the waistband (OWB) holster that is lightweight, durable, and versatile, the Concealment Express OWB Paddle KYDEX Holster may be just what you need.

The holster is produced by  Concealment Express, a company that is known for manufacturing high-quality concealment holsters. And its made for over 150 different guns!

The OWB Paddle KYDEX holster is made from durable Kydex material and is designed to last – it’s strong and durable, yet lightweight and comfortable.

The Concealment Express OWB Paddle KYDEX Holster can be worn with or without a belt, making it a versatile choice for concealed carry. The paddle attachment also makes it easy to take on and off, which is ideal for those who need to remove their holster frequently.

The paddle feature allows the user to adjust the cant (-5 to +20 degrees) and ride height of the holster, making it comfortable to wear for extended periods of time.

The KYDEX material is strong and durable, yet lightweight and comfortable. The paddle design is secure and keeps the holster in place while you are carrying it.

It also features an over-cut open face that ensures full barrel protection and compatibility for accessories like threaded barrels/suppressors, suppressor height sights, etc.

Additionally, the adjustable posi-click retention system is satisfying, to say the least, and has passive retention with a loud click that indicates your firearm is holstered.

The holster also accommodates red dots and threaded barrels.

Product Specs:

  • Price range: $44-$55
  • Retention type: Passive
  • Holster type: Paddle holster
  • Material: KYDEX

Pros

  • Great for OWB concealed carry
  • Lightweight and comfortable
  • Durable
  • Versatile
  • Can be worn with or without a belt
  • The paddle attachment is easy to take on and off
  • Adjustable cant
  • Over-cut open face for full barrel protection
  • Compatible with accessories like threaded barrels/suppressors
  • Available for almost all pistol models
  • May rub against your skin when you sit down
  • May need to adjust the paddle attachment to get the best fit

OUR RATING

We review our products on a 1 to 10 scale. The higher the score the better the product quality in the performance category.

Performance CategoryRating Score
Retention8.5
Durability9.5
Comfort9
Adjustability9.5
Overall Score9.2
Product rating table

Best OWB paddle holster: Safariland, 7378, Concealment Paddle Holster

If you’re looking for the best possible outside the waistband (OWB) paddle holster, then you should definitely consider the Safariland 7378 Concealment Paddle Holster. This top-of-the-line holster is made from durable materials and offers a great deal of adjustability to ensure a perfect fit for your gun.

Additionally, the paddle design makes it easy to put on and take off, and the concealment capabilities are excellent.

The Safariland Model 7378 Concealment Paddle Holster is a great option for those who are looking for a holster that combines the security of an ALS with the speed and simplicity of an open-top design. ALS stands for  Automatic Locking System, and it’s a feature that locks the gun into place once it’s holstered providing excellent retention.

The ALS secures the weapon once holstered and the open-top design without SLS makes it easy to draw once the release is deactivated.

It’s built from durable, weather- and temperature-resistant SafariSeven nylon blend, so it won’t scratch or mar the finish of your firearm. The raised stand-off surfaces in the holster’s interior create air space around the weapon, allowing dirt and moisture to quickly clear any contact with the firearm.

This paddle holster rides close to the body, which makes it very easy to concealed carry also it makes it comfortable to wear all day long.

The holster has an adjustable cant and can be adjusted to fit how you want it to. The Safariland 7378 ALS Paddle holster also comes with an additional belt loop attachment if you want to wear it that way instead. And, it can be worn crossdraw as well.

Product Specs:

  • Price range: $65-$85
  • Retention type: Active
  • Holster type: Paddle holster
  • Material: Polymer

Pros

  • Open-top design for quick and easy drawing
  • Excellent concealment capabilities
  • The paddle design is easy to put on and take off
  • Built from durable materials
  • Adjustable cant for a custom fit
  • Comes with an additional belt loop attachment
  • Can be worn cross draw
  • Harder to conceal larger weapons

OUR RATING

We review our products on a 1 to 10 scale. The higher the score the better the product quality in the performance category.

Performance CategoryRating Score
Retention9.5
Durability9.5
Comfort9
Adjustability9
Overall Score9.2
Product rating table

The Best Leather OWB Holster: DeSantis Speed Scabbard Leather OWB Belt Holster

If you’re looking for the best leather OWB holster, look no further than the DeSantis Speed Scabbard. This holster is made from high-quality leather and is designed for open or concealed carry.

DeSantis Speed Scabbard is a pancake-style holster that rides close to the body for maximum concealment.

The DeSantis Speed Scabbard Leather OWB Belt Holster is designed to meet the needs of plainclothes professionals preferring a holster without a thumb break while still providing great firearm retention. The design also works perfectly for the modern concealed carrier.

The Speed Scabbard features a tension screw device that provides level 1 retention, ensuring that your firearm stays securely in place until you need it. The holster is also precision molded for a perfect fit, providing a snug and comfortable fit against your body.

It is available in black or tan unlined leather and has belt slots that are 1 3/4″ wide. Some models come with two belt slots and without a tension device.

There is one small downside to this holster. It doesn’t keep the pistol away from your body enough so if you are sweating, the holster and gun can get wet.

All-in-all the DeSantis Speed Scabbard is one of the best leather OWB holsters on the market and is perfect for those who want a high-quality, durable holster that will last for years.

Product Specs:

  • Price range: $50-$80
  • Retention type: Passive
  • Holster type: Pancake holster
  • Material: Leather

Pros

  • Fits a variety of firearms
  • Precision molded for a perfect fit
  • Retention screw provides level 1 retention
  • Durable and long-lasting
  • Very comfortable to wear
  • Does not keep the pistol away from your body enough, so it can get wet if you are sweating.
  • it’s meant only for belt carry

OUR RATING

We review our products on a 1 to 10 scale. The higher the score the better the product quality in the performance category.

Performance CategoryRating Score
Retention9
Durability9
Comfort10
Adjustability8
Overall Score9
Product rating table

The Best OWB Pancake Holster: Galco Combat Master Leather Belt Holster

The Galco Combat Master Leather Belt Holster is an excellent option for those looking for a professional-grade holster. The holster is molded by experienced craftsmen to fit specific handguns, and its traditional high-riding pancake-style design pulls the handgun tight to the body, making it disappear under light clothing.

The open top with firing grip accessibility also allows for speed when drawing the weapon in a defensive situation. And thanks to the Combat Master’s excellent retention properties, your handgun will stay securely in place even during strenuous activities.

The outside-the-waistband (OWB) Combat Master is a multi-fit holster designed around multiple similarly sized guns, making it the perfect option for those who own multiple firearms. 

It is made of premium steerhide and features double-stitched seams for enhanced durability.  The holster also has a forward cant which makes it an excellent choice for those looking for a good, strongside holster.

The Combat Master holster fits belts that are up to 1 ¾” wide, making it perfect for modern clothing styles.

The Combat Master holster isn’t good for guns that have red dots.

Bottom line, the Galco Combat Master Leather Belt Holster is an excellent choice for those looking for a top-quality OWB holster that will provide years of dependable service.

Product Specs:

  • Price range: $70-$100
  • Retention type: Passive
  • Holster type: Pancake holster
  • Material: Leather

Pros

  • Excellent retention properties
  • Fits multiple gun sizes
  • Double-stitched seams for enhanced durability
  • Forward cant for a strongside draw
  • Not compatible with guns that have red dots sights

OUR RATING

We review our products on a 1 to 10 scale. The higher the score the better the product quality in the performance category.

Performance CategoryRating Score
Retention9
Durability9.5
Comfort10
Adjustability7.5
Overall Score9
Product rating table

The Best Budget Option: Outlaw Holsters OWB Holster

If you’re looking for an all-kydex budget outside the waistband (OWB) holster, look no further than Outlaw Holsters. Their holsters are made out of extremely durable lightweight .080 kydex material and are contoured to fit along your hip.

They are handmade in the US and feature different cool designs (Like the popular US flag print). They are form fitted to over 125 different guns.

This OWB holster has a passive retention system that clicks in nicely and your gun fits in it snugly but not too tight to interfere with drawing the weapon. The holster has an opening in the bottom where the gun will stick out a bit.

The holster has two 1.75-inch clips that will fit a 1.75 belt. Now, this might be a downside for some people as most gun belts are 2 inches.

All-in-all, it’s a super comfortable holster for all-day carry and best of all, it’s AFFORDABLE! At around 34-39 dollars, this is a great deal for an OWB Kydex holster.

Product Specs:

  • Price range: $34-$39
  • Retention type: Passive
  • Holster type: Belt-mounted holster
  • Material: Kydex

Pros

  • Lightweight and Durable
  • Handmade in the US
  • Fits over 125 different guns
  • Super comfortable for all-day carry
  • Affordable!
  • A lot of design options (can order even custom-designed ones)
  • Good retention
  • The 1.75 inch clips might not fit some gun belts.

OUR RATING

We review our products on a 1 to 10 scale. The higher the score the better the product quality in the performance category.

Performance CategoryRating Score
Retention9
Durability9.5
Comfort9
Adjustability7.5
Overall Score8.75
Product rating table

The Best Competition Holster: Comp-Tac International Outside The Waistband Holster

Whether you’re a seasoned competitor or just getting started in the sport,

the Comp-Tac International holster is one of the best OWB competition holsters available.

The best OWB competition holster available is the International from Comp-Tac. This holster is made entirely of Kydex, which makes it durable and easy to draw from. The low friction surface allows you to quickly draw your weapon while still providing a secure grip also it makes it easier to re-holster the gun.

It offers great retention without the need for a thumb break and additionally, it has retention adjustments.

It is also designed to be worn at the three o’clock position, with our modular mounting design offering 16 wear options in one holster.

It is adjustable for cant, so you can customize it to your needs, and it has eight mounting holes so you can choose the best draw angle for you. The International will also accommodate most suppressors and co-witnessing sights.

It comes with both a paddle mount and a belt mount, so you can decide how you want to wear it.

Overall, the Comp-Tac International holster is a great choice for anyone looking for a top-quality OWB competition holster.

Product Specs:

  • Price range: around $70
  • Retention type:  Passive
  • Holster type: Paddle/ Belt mounted
  • Material: Kydex

Pros

  • Great retention without the need for a thumb break
  • Low friction surface makes it easy to draw and re-holster
  • The modular mounting design offers 16 wear options in one holster
  • Adjustable for cant
  • Comes with both a paddle mount and belt slide
  • Not the best holster for concealed carry

OUR RATING

We review our products on a 1 to 10 scale. The higher the score the better the product quality in the performance category.

Performance CategoryRating Score
Retention9
Durability8.5
Comfort8.5
Adjustability9
Overall Score8.75
Product rating table

Best for a pistol with a light: IMI-Defense TLH Tactical Light/Laser Gun Holster

When you are looking for a good open-carry holster, the IMI-Defense TLH Tactical Light/Laser Gun Holster is an excellent choice. This holster is made to fit most pistols that have a light or laser attached to them.

The best thing about this holster is that it will keep your gun secure while still allowing you to have quick access to it.  It features a secure safety mechanism with an easy thumb release to draw the firearm in minimal time.

The holster has a unique mounting system that allows for connection with any of the IMI Defense platforms, and it also determines the rotation angle between 0 and 360 degrees.

It’s quite a comfortable OWB holster as well, as it’s made of high-quality materials and has an adjustable cant.

The holster is a bit on the bulky side, but that is to be expected with a level 2 holster (especially with the light/laser attached). So it wouldn’t be a good choice for concealed carry.

Overall, the IMI-Defense TLH Tactical Light/Laser Gun Holster is a great choice for those who are looking for a good open-carry holster that is comfortable and will keep their gun secure.

Product Specs:

  • Price range: $85-$148
  • Retention type: Active
  • Holster type: Modular OWB holster
  • Material: Polymer

Pros

  • Fits  most pistols with a light/laser attached
  • Good retention
  • Determines rotation angle between 0 and 360 degrees
  • Comfortable
  • Adjustable cant
  • Bulky and harder to conceal

OUR RATING

We review our products on a 1 to 10 scale. The higher the score the better the product quality in the performance category.

Performance CategoryRating Score
Retention9
Durability8
Comfort8
Adjustability9
Overall Score8.5
Product rating table

FAQ About OWB Holsters

In Conclusion

When shopping for an OWB holster, it is important to consider the factors mentioned above. With so many different holsters on the market, it can be hard to determine which one is best for you.

That’s why we’ve highlighted some of the best OWB holsters on the market and shared our thoughts on each one. So whether you’re looking for a comfortable OWB holster or one that fits your pistol with a light/laser attached, we have you covered.

We hope this article has helped you narrow down your search for the best OWB holster for your needs. Thanks for reading!

John-Caspar Jaanus

Written by John-Caspar

John-Caspar Jaanus is an Estonian military, tactical gear, and survival expert and author. He has an extensive military background and has been involved with the Estonian defense structure for over 10 years. Read bio!

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