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Posts in category Fashion

Buying Pants for Concealed Carry (Pt. 2)

In Part 1 of this series, we looked at my 3 Steps to Buying Pants for Concealed Carry.  And now in Part 2 I will provide you with insight as to the why and how these steps work together.  To recap, our steps are as follows:

  1. Know Your Size
  2. Know Your EDC Loadout
  3. Try Them On

The Pants

Pants buying alone can either be simple or frustrating, throw in a handgun and two spare magazines and it can become a nightmare that many dread.  Knowing your size is half the battle.  It gives you a place to start and almost gets rid of the need to wear a belt because your pants fit you so well.  The general rule of thumb when it comes to pants for concealed carry is to buy the next size up.  While this is decent advice, I find that it is one of those hand-me-down statements spread through gun forums and gun stores based upon age-old thinking from when most of the firearms available for carry had 5″ barrels and/or huge cylinders.

Looking for pants one size up is too broad; especially if you shop in real mens clothing stores such as Jos. A. Bank.  Depending on the store (sometimes even the brand), the next size up could be 1 number or 2 (i.e. 30-32 or 30-31).  When you know your size you at least know where to start on the rack.

CBH_PDN_600x90Once you have your size now you need to know your gear.  Not just your gun, but your holster, extra magazine carrier, keys, gun belts, knife, etc.  Any and everything you carry daily should be accounted for.

Starting with The Gun

XDs 4.0 inside of a Gun Vault Nano Vault 300 (NV 300)

XDs 4.0 inside of a Gun Vault Nano Vault 300 (NV 300)

Today’s assortment of firearms is geared directly towards CCW; which is great for us!  Not only do we have many choices of calibers, barrel sizes, striker or hammer fired, revolver or semi-auto but in case you haven’t heard……………………………………………………..THIN IS IN! Guns like the Springfield Armory XDs, Smith & Wesson M&P Shield, and many others all tout a thickness of 1″ or less.  With a thickness of 1″, one can easily fit a firearm in pants that perfectly fit ones waiste.

With thin guns also comes thin holsters.  Some made out of kydex, nylon, leather, or a combination.  Many of which are far less than an inch thick.  So with a 1″ firearm, a holster less than an inch thick, one would be hard pressed to make up an additional 2 inches of space inside-the-waistband.  But we still need to factor in additional magazines, if you choose to carry them.

Crossbreed Holsters Appendix Carry & Dual Tuckable Mag Carrier

If we are sticking with the idea of carrying slim firearms, then those magazines are thinner than the guns that they fit in.  Pair that with a nice mag carrier and you STILL do not get a full 2″ of space.

As far as belts go, most gun belts are either 1.4″ or 1.5″ wide; which is important to note because not all belt loops are wide enough to accommodate.  Now if you have been following me on Instagram or Facebook you have likely seen several times that I have shown that I am not wearing a gun belt, but we will save that discussion for another post.

The rest of your loadout is either carried on your belt or inside a pocket depending on how dapper you are dressing.  Pockets on pants come with all sorts of different cuts and depths.  Knowing what you intend to put in those pockets is paramount in selecting pants.  For example: If your EDC pocketknife has an unopened length of 4″, those snazzy chinos with the shallow pockets are probably a bad idea (unless you have a smaller knife to carry when you wear them).  This is just one example of the myriad of things that maybe in your everyday carry that should be accounted for.

The Perfect Fit

Now that we have gotten sized for pants and have all of our gear in mind, it is time to grab some pants off the rack or shelf (preferably 1 that is your exact size, 1 size up if they have it,  and another 2 sizes up) and head into the fitting room.

FullSizeRender

As if trying on pants was not already a tedious procedure, it is even more so when you add in a gun and a belt.  But in order to get this right we have to include those items in this process.  Of course we need to follow all 4 Gun Safety Rules as we remove our holster from our current pants (you did bring your firearm correct?).  We are now going to proceed with trying on the new pants WITH our holstered weapon and OUR belt.  This is important because here is where we find out if we can stick with our actual size, one size up, or two.

Once you land on a pair that is a comfortable fit, I like to make note (mental or actual) of the brand and possibly the model for future reference.  This is great when you shop major retailers/brands such as Ralph Lauren, Perry Ellis, and Levis.  With this information you are now equipped to shop for those same pants in different colors; in-store or online.


Conclusion

Carrying a gun does not mean you have have to dress like you are reliving high school. Neither does it mean you have to be uncomfortable while carrying. Whether you are purchasing a nice pair of slacks or slim fit jeans, these 3 steps will help to ensure you get perfect fitting CCW pants every time. 

Feel free to add something you feel I missed down in the comments, and if there’s something specific you would like me to talk about, send me an email at dapperconcealedcarry@gmail.com

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– Peace 

Buying Pants for Concealed Carry (Pt. 1)

If you have done any searching for how-to guides or just general information on concealed carry you have likely ran across the almost unanimous advice of gun belts and good holsters.  But finding information on pants buying is a lot tougher to find and usually coming from someone who is no where near a fashion expert (was that politically correct enough?).

In the gun forums, most of the recommendations talk about buying pants that are the next size up which is not bad advice; nor is it great either.  The reason I say it is not great advice is because it is too general of a statement.  Like shoes, pants can run big or small and have different cuts that affect the way they wear.

In this 1st post of a 2 part series, I would like to start by breaking down the pants buying process into 3 easy steps that will ensure that you get the perfect pants every time you shop.

CBH_PDN_600x90

1. Know Your Size

Clothing Meaurement Tape

Knowing your pant size is as important as knowing your shoes size.  If you have never been sized or have not been recently, I highly recommend getting yourself sized.  Not only for pants, but for clothes in general.  One of the keys to living the #dapperccw lifestyle is wearing clothes that fit properly.  (Most big name suit/clothing retailers offer sizing as a complimentary service) Once you have your size you now have the essential piece of information needed to buy the perfect pants for CCW every single time.

2. Know Your EDC Loadout

EDC Loadout

 

We have all come across those individuals that can tell you everything about the guns in their safe all the way down to the date they were each manufactured.  But knowing your Everyday Carry (EDC) loadout goes beyond just knowing the specs of your firearms.  If you are truly living the responsibly armed lifestyle, then there is a lot more involved in your loadout than the gun you are carrying.  Without taking your carry gear into account when buying pants, you are likely to make purchases that do not completely fit you needs.

The following are just a few examples of the many items that may be included in you gear that you must account for when shopping for pants:

  • Gun(s) & Holster(s)
  • Belt(s)
  • Pocket Knife
  • Flashlight
  • Chapstick
  • Pen
  • Extra Mag(s)
  • OC Spray

You may be wondering what knowing your gear has to do with buying pants.  The answer is EVERYTHING.  If you do not know what is in your EDC you do not know what type of pockets (cut and size), how much inside-the-waistband (IWB) space, or what belt loop size you need.

3. Try Them On

Fitting Room Pants

This step is probably the most important and should go without saying, but in the age of things like Trunk Club and shopping online I have to make sure I say it.  Even though you know your size, know your gear, and have successfully purchased pants of the same size before, you still want to try them on (preferably with your gun and holster, at least) to ensure that they fit the way you want.  The only time this step is not an absolute must is when you are purchasing the exact same brand and model in a different color.


Now that we have gotten our 3 Steps to Buying Pants for Concealed Carry down, in our next post we will look at how these 3 steps work together and I believe they are a better guide than the general rule of thumb “buy the next size up”.

 

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– Peace

CBH_PDN_600x90 Tulster-Banners-with-Bigger-Text Rubber-City-Holsters-Banner-with-Bigger-Text

IWB vs OWB Carry

Inside-the-Waistband (IWB) and Outside-the-Waistband (OWB) are certainly the two most common ways to carry a handgun, but the debate on which is better will go on for years to come.  Personally I prefer IWB but there are times when I opt for OWB.  If you are new to concealed carry and still trying to decide which method of carry you want to use, I hope to provide you with a resource to help your decision.

Inside-the-Waistband (IWB) Carry

For concealed carry, IWB carry is the easiest way to conceal a handgun.  This is because the slide of the gun is down inside the pants and the only thing left to cover is the grip, which is as easy as throwing on a t-shirt.  Also, inside-the-waistband carry is extremely comfortable, contrary to older beliefs, especially with the current trends of “conceal carry handguns” and the wide range of holsters available.

Printing with IWB carry is relatively minimal compared to OWB depending on the handgun and clothing style.  I am consistently able to wear very fitting clothing without printing.

Appendix carry makes concealment even easier because the average person, man or woman, is not going to be staring into another persons crotch. (Unless they are a flat-out pervert)

Tactically, inside-the-waistband carry gives you better control and access to the firearm at all times, even while driving. (which I do a lot of.)

Outside-the-Waistband (OWB) Carry

When a lot of people hear OWB carry they usually think Open Carry, which is not always the case.  Carrying concealed with an outside-the-wiastband holster is very doable, it just requires a little more attention to detail than carrying inside-the-waistband.  Even though, IWB can be extremely comfortable, there is no denying that OWB is much more comfortable because you do not have the cold, hard handgun slide down your pants rubbing against you.

If you are gravely concerned about printing or you gun being seen, I would not recommend OWB carry for you.  This is because it is very likely that throughout the course of your day, someone will see your gun via printing

or because your shirt has raised up enough to reveal the bottom of the slide, or completely exposing your handgun.  As you can see in the above photos, OWB carry with properly fitting clothing makes me look bulky round the waist and if someone looks hard enough, they will likely see the outline of my pistol.  (Adding a jacket to this outfit, would probably get rid of the awkward wideness around the hips)

One major disadvantage to outside-the-waistband carry is driving.  Once you strap on the seatbelt, your access to your firearm is greatly hindered not only by the seatbelt itself, but also your cover garment.  This tactical disadvantage is at the top of my list for why I do not carry this way on a daily basis.  When I do carry this way; however, I often remove the firearm from the holster and wedge it in-between my seat and the center console area.

(I do plan on getting a Grassburr Mountable Holster for this purpose)

Which one is better?

I would not go on record saying one method is better than the other, but I will say that if you are new to concealed carry and are fashion conscious, IWB carry is the way to go because of the ease of concealment and minimal printing even with extremely fitted clothing.  If you can afford it, I would recommend purchasing a holster for both carry methods because there are pros and cons to both and there are times when one method is clearly more desirable and/or appropriate than the other.

No matter which you chose, ALWAYS carry and look dapper while doing it!

Please Subscribe, Follow, Like, & Share I Carry A Gun But You Can’t Tell!

– Peace

I Need Your Support

When I began the Dapper Concealed Carry Movement all I had was the idea that with all the concealed carry resources out there, there really was not anyone (specifically males) talking about fashion and concealed carry.  So after I began carrying and wowing myself and others at how I was able to concealed a firearm and still dress fashionably, I knew that I had something to offer the community.

So far, I have gotten great responses on my posts and the Instagram page is growing daily.  I have quickly realized that in order for this to work, I need to have resources available to get holsters, clothing, and possibly even firearms to review to show how well they work with carrying a gun while being well-dressed.  At the beginning of this year, I laid out a few things that I would like to accomplish. If you have not read that post, you can view it here.

So how can you support me and what is in it for you?  I am so glad you asked.

The simple answer to your question: Founders Republic Store

By following this link, the Founders Republic Store link in the menu, or the banner under “Affiliates” on the right side-bar of this page you have the opportunity to purchase t-shirts that represent Freedom, Revolution, and Liberty for yourself as well as providing support for me.  ***Please use only these links to make your purchases***

I am also working on a few other great opportunities for you to acquire things you need/want while providing support to this movement.  I hope that I can count on you to be a sponsor and I look forward to continuing to provide resources for you, the well-dressed concealed carrying individual.  Regardless, I thank you all for joining me in this and do not be a stranger.

Subscribe, Follow, Like, & Share I Carry A Gun But You Can’t Tell!

– Peace

Crossbreed Holsters Appendix Carry and Dual Tuckable Mag Carrier Review

If you have been into concealed carry for awhile or even if you are a new comer to the community, it is very likely that you have heard of Crossbreed Holsters.  If you have not, you should check them out!  They are the original creators of the Hybrid Holster style of Kydex molded holsters attached to leather (or other material) backings.  This review will focus on their Appendix Carry Holster and Dual Tuckable Mag Carrier.

 

Appendix Carry Holster

The first thing that comes to mind for most men when they hear appendix carry is something along the lines of “you’re going to shoot your man parts off!”.  While this may be a valid concern, anyone who has been around firearms and understands how they work knows that as long as the TRIGGER GUARD IS COVERED and you KEEP YOUR FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER when holstering and drawing the gun is not going to go off unless it has a serious malfunction.

CBH_PDN_600x90

Now that we have gotten that out of the way.

The Crossbreed Holsters Appendix Carry Holster is a great option for anyone considering appendix carry.  With it’s one clip design, it makes it easy to put on and take off easily without even having to undo your belt buckle.  The one clip design also allows you to easily adjust the placement of the holster when sitting, if necessary.  The factory retention is adequate for an IWB (Inside The Waistband) holster because the belt will add even more, but there is a way to tighten it if you would like.

The comfort of this holster is superb!  It is so good that I have actually almost slept through an entire night without realizing that my firearm was strapped to me.  And it actually gets more comfortable over time as the cowhide forms to your body.

The placement of the holster will vary slightly depending on how your belt buckle works (I really like the 5.11 Tactical Apex Gunner’s Belt for Everyday Carry).  I also have a modified Crossbreed Holsters Gun Belt w/ Velcro for when I need to tuck in my shirt.

The sweet spot for me is the space right between my upper thigh and my man parts. But there are times to where the one clip design causes the holster to shift on its own.  Sitting is comfortable as long as you actually wear you pants up on your waist.  But when sitting down in the car I usually hike my pants up a little bit because of the way my seats are.  This allows the gun to sit flat against my stomach and is the perfect tactical position while driving.

Dual Tuckable Mag Carrier

Like the Crossbreed Holsters Appendix Carry Holster, the Dual Tuckable Mag Carrier is extremely comfortable and conforms to your body over time.

Because of its wide, two clip design, this mag carrier’s placement will shift slightly day-to-day depending on where your pant’s belt loops are.  But even so its usually not that noticeable of a shift.  Because of my body shape and the split design of the kydex magazine slots, I had to test out a few different placement options before deciding on my desired spot, which is about the 7 o’clock position.

The only real problem that I had/have with this holster is that occasionally, when I am disarming for the night, I will pull out the magazines and notice that the top round is not properly seated.

After noticing this on several different occasions, I think I discovered the problem.  Because I often carry a backpack over my left shoulder, I believe that while walking the backpack would push down on top of the magazines causing this to happen.  I am still testing this theory and I will be conducting this experiment with other mag carriers to see if I experience the same problem.

Concealment & Clips

Both of these products conceal very well and because they are so comfortable you won’t be shifting them around all day drawing attention to yourself.  Because fashion is a big part of who I am as an individual, I needed to have a deep concealment option for those times when I am wearing tucked shirts.  The tuckability of these holsters is excellent and with the added V-clips (the V is for Velcro), people will really be clueless to the fact that you are carrying.  But there is a flaw to these clips.  The adhesive used to attach the velcro to the plastic clip does not last very long.  It is so bad that within weeks of receiving my holsters and wearing them daily, the velcro was starting to shift, before one finally lost all of its adhesive and will no longer stay on the clip.

The standard metal clips are perfect for Every Day Carry with untucked shirts.  It even works well with thick sweatpants!

Conclusion

The Crossbreed Holsters Appendix Carry Holster and Dual Tuckable Mag Carrier are two great holster options for anyone looking for a discreet and comfortable carry system. Especially if you are someone who dresses up often.  The ability to tuck in your shirt easily makes this one of my favorite carry setups because of its versatility.  Even with the terrible v-clip adhesive, you can figure out a way to reattach the velcro if it wears out.

I look forward to comparing this system to many of the others out there.

Here is the video review of these holsters and the Crossbreed Holsters Gun Belt:

If you would like to get one of these holsters or any others made by Crossbreed holster, consider using my affiliate link HERE (I do receive a commission from your purchase).

Thank you for reading.

Subscribe, Follow, Like, & Share I Carry A Gun But You Can’t Tell!

– Peace

First Time Carrying Outside-the-Waistband (OWB) and Without a Gun Belt

If you have been following me on Instagram and/or Twitter, then you know my preferred method of carry is Inside-the-Waistband (IWB) in the appendix position with the Crossbreed Holsters Appendix Carry and a  Crossbreed Dual Tuckable Mag Carrier.  This past Sunday, due to the outfit I decided to wear, I had to alter my carry to Outside-the-Waistband (OWB) using the paddle holster and dual magazine carrier that came with my Springfield Armory XD-S 4.0″.  The reason for the switch was that the pants I chose to wear did not have enough room to comfortably carry IWB without having to wear my pants above my waistline.  Not only did I switch from IWB to OWB, I also carried with a non gun belt!!! *Gasp*

Once I was dressed and before I put on the blazer for concealment, I went through some draw reps to ensure that I had a smooth draw and to embed the new carry position in my mind so that if the need arose, I would know to draw from that position instead of my normal carry position.  After those reps, I put on the blazer and added my Nite Ize S-Biner to the strong-side front pocket to give the jacket more weight to be thrown back then went through another round of reps working on flicking the blazer back prior to the draw.

Ever since I started carrying, I have not carried without wearing a gun belt.  So it is needless to say I was a bit skeptical strapping on a firearm with a less than adequate support system.  This particular belt is actually a very inexpensive one from Walmart and I acquired it before I started carrying to match these shoes.  I am happy to report that I had no issues carrying with this belt and will be trying out more “unconventional” carry equipment.  But I am sure a big reason I was able to comfortably carry with a non gun belt was because of the lightweight firearm I was carrying. (Something we will discuss in a later post)
To my surprise the OWB position was a lot more comfortable than I expected; even in the car.  Though if I had bucket seats in my car, my experience might have been different.  I must say, there is a much different feeling that comes with having a firearm strapped to your side only being concealed by a blazer rather than concealed under a shirt.  But unless you do not mind looking like a detective when you remove your blazer, be sure your blazers material and thickness will keep you at a comfortable temperature with it on all day.

One of the problems I had with this position was not have easy access to firearm while driving because of the blazer and the seatbelt.  Another thing to watch out for when wearing blazers is the side vents when sitting or reaching into pockets.  On several occasions I found myself having to lift the blazer back over the magazine carrier while sitting because the magazines had become exposed.  This problem can probably be fixed by a tailor, but depending on the style you are going for, the length of the jacket might always be short.

Another thing to be conscious of is the taper of the blazer when buttoning.  While this is not as big of an issue unless you are going to be standing in front of people staring at you, no one will probably even think twice about the slight bulges or imprints at your sides.

The blazer and slacks is a great dapper look and a great way to conceal.  Send me your takes on this look via Email, Twitter, or tag me in a picture on Instagram (Be sure to also tag your photos with #dapperccw and #dapperconcealedcarry).

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