Before you can carry your 1911, you need a holster. For the new 1911 owner, this is both good and bad news. The good news — there are plenty of options available. The bad news — not all of them are equal. Some are not even worth the time it takes to drive to the store. That is why we have compiled this list of the best 1911 holsters for you.
The 1911 is an iconic firearm. It is still one of the most popular models available. Owners carry it for many reasons. These range from personal protection, as a duty weapon, and for competitions. But before a 1911 owner can use their weapon, they need a quality holster.
You can spend all the money in the world on a firearm. But you need a holster that will match the gun in quality. The holster elevates your 1911 to something more than a conversation piece. It allows you to use it in real-world settings.
Because the 1911 is such a popular firearm, there are literally countless holster options. You have your choice of carry locations, materials, designs, and price ranges. But which is best? How do you pick one holster when there are so many available?
This is where we come in. We have compiled a list of the best 1911 holsters on the market. But before we get to our list let’s examine what’s important in a holster purchase.
How to select a holster
A good holster does more than carry a firearm. A good holster secures the firearm. If you are going to carry a firearm in any capacity, it is your responsibility to make sure it does not first accidentally. You also do not want it to fall off. This is why you use a holster rather than simply tucking it into your clothes.
New gun owners may wonder, “How could I lose my firearm?” Experienced gun owners answer, “You would be surprised!” Running, climbing in or out of your vehicle, or bending over can result in a dropped or lost firearm. If you have an inferior holster, that is.
Your holster needs to secure your weapon and be secured to your body. Again, a poorly constructed holster could break free during vigorous activity. It could also slide out of place. That makes it nearly impossible to utilize your firearm if the need arises.
The second most important task your holster performs is protecting the trigger. A good holster will prevent a finger or stray foreign object from causing an accidental discharge. It will also prevent YOU from placing your finger on the trigger. You will have to wait until the firearm is completely unholstered.
You may find a holster that does not protect the trigger stop. If you do, keep shopping. No matter its other features, a holster must accomplish this most basic of tasks.
Are you going to carry your firearm with any frequency? Then it is important you purchase a holster that will last. After all, you do not want to be buying a new holster every few months.
Today’s holsters are constructed from a wide range of materials. They range from traditional leather to high-speed Kydex. No matter what your preference, you can find a material to suit. Make sure to also inspect the quality of the construction. Look at the stitching, welds, seams, and connection points. Are materials cut cleanly? Are accessories attached with high-grade fasteners? Are belt clips metal or plastic?
Although a quality holster will cost more, it is worth every penny.
Ease of Use
The final consideration should be the ease with which the firearm can be used. Can you get your pistol out quickly under stress? Can you get a proper grip on your firearm when it is drawn? If not, the holster might as well be a lockbox.
How about when it comes time to reholster that firearm? Too many firearms owners overlook this. Every drawn gun, though, eventually needs to be reholstered. Some holsters collapse when the firearm is removed. They require two hands to reholster. Or they could prevent a safe return of the firearm. These three issues affect the hoslter’s usability.
Many of today’s holsters are equipped with a variety of adjustments. Retention, position, and belt connections can all be customized. Make sure the customizable features are easy to use as well. If these features are so complicated that you cannot use of them, what good are they?
Our picks for best 1911 holsters
It’s now time to reveal our picks for the Best 1911 Holsters.
1.Alien Gear IWB Cloak Tuck 3.0
When it comes to concealed carry, Inside the Waist Band (IWB) is one of the most popular options. It provide a secure means of carrying your firearm. It also provides the element of surprise. Your adversary cannot snatch your firearm. They are less likely to even see it until it is too late.
One of the best IWB holsters on the market is the Alien Gear IWB Cloak Tuck 3.0. It can fit many of the most popular mid- or compact-model 1911s. The hybrid Kydex material is comfortable. It is also nearly indestructible. The twin belt clips secure easily to a large range of belts. They will even work with larger tactical designs. The passive retention system ensures your firearm will stay in the holster until you need it. You will still have a quick, easy draw.
- Designed for the more comfortable IWB carry option.
- The hybrid Kydex material makes for an extremely lightweight, yet rugged design.
- Mounts easily to a variety of belt sizes.
- Passive retention system secures firearm during vigorous activity.
- Plastic clips are not as strong as the metal design used by some competitors.
- Molded Kydex prevents use with multiple weapons.
2.Galco Combat Master Belt Holster
The Combat Master is another extraordinarily successful design by Galco. It is one of the best ways of concealing a full-frame 1911. More importantly, it is as functional as it is elegant.
Hiding, and being able to access, a large frame firearm can be a challenge. This is even more difficult when choosing an outside the waistband holster. But the Combat Master is up to the task. There is a butt-forward cant and open muzzle design. It offers just the right placement to reduce printing. Plus, this is a near-perfect position for a quick, accurate draws.
Many shooters may believe leather is a thing of the past. However, it is one of the keys to this holster’s success. It is more comfortable against the body. It also provides a natural level of retention and durability. All in all, this is a holster worth far more than the price.
- Premium leather construction with double stitching.
- Forward cant and open muzzle allow for near perfect draw every time.
- Available in black or brown.
- Can only be worn in limited waist locations.
- Is a bit heavier than similar synthetic construction designs.
3.Blackhawk Serpa Sportster Holster
The company Blackhawk has come from humble beginnings. Yet, their combination of quality construction and superior design elevated the brand’s success. Today they are a leader in the holster industry. It should come as no surprise that they would have earned a spot on the list of the best 1911 Holsters.
Blackhawk is known for its patented Serpa retention system. It is designed to be easy for the user to deactivate. Yet it is nearly impossible for an attacker to overcome. One of the best features of the Sportster is its versatility. This holster can be adjusted to fit almost any shooting style.
Users have the option of a paddle or belt loop mount. Both can be adjusted for draw height and angle. The patented Serpa retention system can also be adjusted. This makes it easier for smaller shooters to use. Plus, all adjustments can be made with the single included Allen wrench.
- Superior retention system.
- Very adjustable to fit your individual style.
- Affordable price any shooter can afford.
- Limited body placement options.
- Serpa retention system requires some practice to master.
4.Galco Miami Classic II
If you prefer a shoulder holster, it will be hard to beat the Miami Classic. It is the most recognized model. It is also one of the best constructed.
The key to a good shoulder holster is comfort. The weight of a full-size handgun hanging from your body can get quite heavy. It can restrict movement. It can also lead to some serious back pain before the day is over.
The Miami Classic is specifically designed to overcome the standard shoulder rig complaints. It does a wonderful job. The 1.5” straps distribute the weight evenly across the shoulders. The swivel connections allow each strap to move independently. A double magazine pouch on the opposite side offsets the weight of a full-frame 1911. The genuine leather construction, thumb break retention, and quality provide a design that has stood the test of time.
- Top quality construction that will last.
- Designed to carry large frame firearms with ease.
- Comfortable enough to wear all day.
- One of the more costly holsters on the market
- Can be difficult to conceal, even under a sport coat.
5.Crossbreed Super Tuck
Kydex has become one of the industry favorites. But it can be uncomfortable against the skin. So how do you make a comfortable IWB Kydex holster for the 1911? You add leather.
The Super Tuck uses a standard molded Kydex holster. It provides the benefits of a custom fit and excellent retention. But they mounted it to a leather backer. This provides increased comfort. It also protects the gun from sweat.
But what about when you need to draw your 1911? No worries here either. The large powder-coated retention clips hold everything in place. They allow the firearm to be presented without a problem. Plus, they can be adjusted for draw height, and cant. They can even be swapped for different sizes.
- Leather provides increased comfort against the skin.
- Large, powder coated clips hold everything securely.
- Can be adjusted to fit your draw style.
- Only available in black.
- Smaller framed users may have difficulty finding a suitable waist location.
There are as many 1911 holster options as there are 1911 models and variants. Obviously, some are better than others. None will be perfect for every situation. It is impossible to review every option available. But we believe we have presented the best of the best here. From IWB to shoulder rigs, no matter your preferred method, our list has a suggestion for you. Absorb the buyer’s guide, and then choose from our top five list.
Brian Belko is a freelance writer and blogger. His primary areas of focus include the outdoors and shooting sports. In addition to his freelance work, Brian also writes for Wide Open Spaces and is on the Pro Staff at Military Hunting and Fishing. When he isn’t busy writing, Brian enjoys fishing farm ponds for bass and hitting the spring woods during turkey season.