Gun Gear

Appendix IWB Holsters

Philem Withlead
Published Jul 22, 2021
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Our Top Picks For AIWB Holsters

Reviews Of The Appendix IWB Holsters From Our Research

APS Appendix Rig

Advanced Performance Shooting Holsters Protective Services Elrod, Appendix Inside The Waistband Rig(Black)
  • Virtually unbreakable design, even with hard use.
  • All Day Comfort!
  • Super strong kydex hand-crafted in the U.S.A.
  • Other options available upon request by contacting seller
  • Tuckable design with integrated magazine pouch

The APS holster was designed with the input of military and law enforcement veterans with the brief that the holster should be tuckable and suitable for IWB and competition carry. To enhance the EDC value, the holster was also equipped with a magazine pouch.

The Kydex design is made to fit a broad range of popular auto-pistols from Glocks to Sig Sauer and even CZ’s. The ride height of the holster can be adjusted by playing with the two clips’ positions. This clip adjustment design offers quite a lot of leeway with regard to ride adjustment. A big plus with this holster is that it covers the trigger guard completely which is important for a holster that sits close to the endzone.

In general, the holster is thin and sits very snuggly inside the waist, and is really comfortable. The retention is very good but it is not adjustable. The APS holster is a simple design, probably the military and law enforcement influence and I could not find anything potentially wrong with it. It’s not the cheapest appendix holster on the market but it certainly is one of the best. If you can handle a bit of extra size to accommodate a spare magazine, then the APS is a fantastic option.


  • Adjustable ride
  • Kydex mold for specific models
  • Covers the trigger guard completely


  • There isn’t one except that the magazine pouch adds size but if that’s what you want, then it’s not a concern

Relentless Tactical Defender Leather Holster

Relentless Tactical The Defender Leather IWB Holster - Made in USA - for S&W M&P Shield - Glock 17 19 22 23 32 33 44/ Springfield XD & XDS/and All Similar Sized Handguns – Charred Oak – Right Handed
  • HANDMADE BY AMERICAN CRAFTSMEN FROM GENUINE USA BULLHIDE LEATHER! American made with American Pride! No synthetic materials or cheap mass-market production.
  • BACKED BY RELENTLESS TACTICAL’S LIFETIME WARRANTY! Carry the best IWB Holster on Amazon with confidence for the rest of your life. With quality American Made construction comes great durability. That is why we can offer a Lifetime Warranty on each and every leather product we sell.
  • FITS MOST FULL SIZE & COMPACT HANDGUNS IN 9MM, .40 & .45! Glock 17 / 17L / 22 / 31 | Glock 19 / 19X / 23 / 32 | Glock 26 / 27 / 33 | Glock 43 | S&W SD9 / SD40 | H&K VP9 / VP40 | S&W M&P Shield (9mm, .40 and .45) | Sig Sauer P226 / P229 / P250 | Springfield XD, XDS, XDM | Taurus 111 / 140 Millennium G2 / G2C | Will fit too many models to list them all!!
  • SAY NO TO CHEAP NYLON HOLSTERS! Why settle for inferior nylon or imitation leather when you can have a Genuine Made in the USA Bullhide leather holster with our complete Lifetime Warranty?
  • DESIGNED FOR OPTIMUM PERFORMANCE AND MAXIMUM COMFORT! Sturdy dependable and form-fitted for easy effective concealment and quick reliable access.

The Relentless leather holster is a well-constructed and durable hand-made design that is offered in three different colors. It is made for the S&W M&P shield and most of the Glock pistols as well as all guns of similar size.

With the S&W in particular, it covers the entire trigger guard and magazine release which is a plus. It’s uncertain as to whether it will provide the same total coverage for all similar-sized guns.

The holster comes with a lifetime warranty and the steel clip provides a very strong hold on your belt. As far as leather holsters go, the Relentless is of superior quality for its price. The ride height is quite low but this is good for concealed appendix carry.

The only thing that a potential buyer should take note of is that with holsters that claim to fit certain pistols and any other gun of similar size, this can mean that it’s a great fit for some guns and only an ok fit for others.


  • Quality hand-made leather
  • Small and compact
  • Covers the trigger and magazine release ( S&W M&P Shield)


  • It may not be an ideal fit for all guns of the S&W size.

Blackhawk ARC Appendix Carry Holster

The Blackhawk is an ambidextrous Kydex holster that is molded for the S&W M&P Shield, most Glocks, and the Springfield XDS.

The cant and ride height can be adjusted by using the holster’s two clips and the clips can be used with belts of 1.5 to 1.75-inches in height. The retention can be adjusted with a screw and because the holster does not have a sweat guard, it can accommodate guns with rear- mounted red dot sights.

The one drawback to the ambidextrous design is that it does not have the extra material on the side of the holster that sits against your skin. The extra material is not only a sweat guard but it also makes re-holstering easier.


  • Small and lightweight
  • Adjustable cant and ride height
  • Adjustable retention
  • Ambidextrous


  • No sweat guard

CYA Supply AIWB Holster

CYA Supply IWB Inside Waistband Concealed Carry Holster, Right Hand Draw - Flat Dark Earth
  • Fits Glock 43/43X/43X MOS (Optic Not Compatible) - No Light/Laser Attachments (Right Hand Draw Only)
  • IWB Holster - Inside The Waistband - Easily Adjustable Retention Pressure & Carry Angle (Cant) 0-15 Degrees
  • Precision molds from CAD milled in house on our CNC. Made of .08" Thickness Boltaron Material - Belt Clip 1.5" wide - All Stainless Steel Black Powder Coat Hardware
  • Posi-Click' Audible Retention Lock System - Sweat Guard covers full length of slide
  • Made in USA - WE STAND BY OUR QUALITY: 100% Satisfaction Guarantee, No questions asked return policy and Lifetime Warranty.

The CYA holster is one of the better affordable appendix holsters and is molded specifically for most concealed-carry-sized auto pistols.

The clip allows for an adjustable cant, up to fifteen degrees, and the retention can also be adjusted. It’s lightweight and very comfortable to wear. One consideration when choosing the CYA is that the clip is designed for belts of 1.5-inches in height and not up to the usual 1.75-inches.


  • Adjustable cant and retention
  • Lightweight and comfortable


  • The clip is designed for 1.5-inch belts

Cardini Leather IWB Ultra Soft Leather Holster

Cardini Leather USA – IWB Black Leather Holster - Left Handed - Concealed Carry - for S&W J Frame, S&W Models 442 and 642 Airweight, 637, 638, 640 and Other Snub Nose Revolvers in .38 Special
  • USE: When wearing as concealed carry, order your regular hand-hold, when wearing this holster outside the waistband, order the opposite handed option. Can be worn hip, back or appendix carry options. Built for easy effective concealment and quick reliable access; Sturdy dependable and form-fitted; Designed to mount at an ideal angle for proper firing grip; Great gift idea for him/her for Christmas, birthday, Father’s or Mother’s Day, or any occasion
  • MATERIAL: Premium cowhide leather in a variety of color options; Holster may be tight initially but with brief use, it will relax and maintain a secure fit; Ultra smooth leather interior to protect your firearm from scratches; This IWB gun holster will bend when you bend to reduce discomfort from pressure against your hip; Double-stitched reinforcement for strength and durability; Strong tempered steel spring clip; Minimal imprint
  • DIMENSIONS & FIT: Leather will relax with use and will hold firearm securely; A raised back sweat shield that insulates firearm from body; Unique two-piece construction is contoured to mold the curve of your body for a more natural fit and maximum all day comfort; Narrower profile than other conceal holsters
  • WARRANTY INFO: 100% Satisfaction guarantee with a limited lifetime warranty for any manufacturer defects; Happy lifetime customers are our business
  • PLACE OF ORIGIN: Hand-made with individual craftsmanship by seasoned leather and holster experts by our Colombian partners

The Cardini holster is designed specifically for J-frame revolvers and the Ruger LCR. The leather is hand-stitched and the holster has double stitching where it needs it. The Cardini also offers the holster in eight different color combinations.

The holster has a very solid clip that keeps it firmly on the belt and prevents unwanted movement. The position of the clip also means that your gun will ride slightly high on the belt. The holster has a good sweat guard and most importantly for appendix carry- the trigger guard is completely covered.

With a little bit of breaking in, the holster fits J-frames very well with just the right amount of retention but also allows for a quick draw. The only potential drawback to a leather holster with one fixed clip is that the ride height and retention is not adjustable.


  • Good quality hand -stitched leather
  • Great retention
  • Good quality clip


  • Not adjustable in any way

Buyer's Guide for Appendix IWB Holsters

Appendix IWB or AIWB has been gaining popularity as a carry style with concealed carry advocates for some time now. The appendix style involves the positioning of the gun at the front of your belly in roughly the 1 o’clock position.

Our top picks cover Kydex and leather options as well as a slightly larger holster that incorporates a magazine pouch. We have also selected a few holsters that are super thin and light for people that value those features above all others.

If you are new to the idea of appendix carry then you have come to the right place. Between our top choices, you should be able to get yourself a good appendix holster that can enable you to try the carry style for yourself. Who knows, maybe it will become your primary carry style.

Is AIWB risky?

Before appendix carry enjoyed a resurgence, it had been deemed to be unsafe by many in the gun world. The style of carry is as old as guns themselves but a psychological fear has impacted the way people think about it.

The kneejerk objection is that you could accidentally shoot your Johnson. Worse still, if your gun is angled slightly, you could shoot your femoral artery.

A counterargument is that shooters who are unsafe and do not practice sensible training methods are at risk of accidental discharges no matter how they carry their guns. With the correct holster, specifically one that completely covers the trigger guard, this risk should be eliminated.

Others might say that the only potential danger is when you are re-holstering, but this affects any carry style and can be avoided by using a DA/SA pistol that has a manual safety.

Appendix Holster Drawbacks

The main drawback is determined by the size of your gun and your body shape. When you have a gun position at the front of your pants, it can be uncomfortable when sitting down for long periods or bending down. Naturally, driving could also be uncomfortable.

These potential problems can be addressed by simply using the right holster for you. This would mean trying out a few different AIWB holsters until you find the one that sits right. Worst case scenario, you may also need to reconsider the type of gun that you carry when using the appendix style.

Appendix Holsters Have Their Place

Why do people like the appendix carry style? There is obviously something to it, otherwise, no one would carry appendix. Firstly, appendix carry enables you to draw a bit faster compared to the traditional side position or just behind the side.

A second benefit is that it is much harder for an assailant to grab at your gun when it’s positioned at the front of your abdomen. A third benefit is that with most clothing, particularly light clothing, concealing a full-size gun is much easier when it’s at your front and is less likely to print.

So there are the arguments in favor of the appendix. It’s faster on the draw, retention is better, and it’s easier to conceal bigger guns in summer clothing. If you practice correctly with your appendix rig and you have a suitable gun, then you should be able to enjoy all of the advantages of this style of carry and eliminate any possible disadvantages.

Final Thoughts

Whether you like the feel of good quality leather or you favor the perfect gun fit of a Kydex or plastic holster, the above holsters should be a great starting point for anyone wanting to experiment with AIWB carry.

These options are designed for safety and address any concerns that anti-AIWB advocates may have.