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Leather or Kydex: What Should Your Holster Be Made Of?

Whether you’re new to carrying a concealed firearm every day or you’ve been doing it for years, one of the recurring challenges you face is choosing the right holster for the job. A quick trip to your local gun store yields a seemingly endless variety of holsters from different brands, all for different models and makes of pistol or revolver.

Once you’ve rightfully rejected the $20 bargain bin special holsters, you leave the store and head online in search of a custom concealed carry holster that perfectly fits your firearm. Now you’re really left with two choices: leather or Kydex. But which should you choose? The choice is more clear than you may realize. Let’s review some of the pressing factors in choosing a conceal carry holster for your firearm.

Protecting Your Finish

The finish of your firearm may or may not be an important factor for you. Some might view their concealed carry piece as something that’s understandably going to take some abuse. However, others might be more concerned about the state of their finish. In either case, leather and Kydex holsters are going to affect the finish of your firearm differently.

Kydex is naturally rigid and durable. But when heated, it can be carefully formed to match every contour of a firearm. That means that a Kydex concealed holster retains your gun in place very well. However, it can lead to undue wear and tear on the finish. But these light scratches can be readily addressed with some gun bluing.

Many higher-end leather holsters are lined with some kind of padding to protect the finish of your firearm, be it suede, cloth, or nylon. While these might keep your weapon from getting scratched while drawing and reholstering, they aren’t without their downsides.

Those in warmer climates, like we in San Antonio, can relate to the problem of peeling a leather holster off your hip at the end of a long day. The sweat your body generates seeps into the leather, creating a warm, damp environment for your firearm. The salts in your sweat can build up and collect on your firearm, eventually leading to issues like rust and corrosion.

The Retention of Your Firearm

At the most fundamental level, your holster needs to do nothing more than securely hold your weapon in place. Retention is key for concealed carry holsters. Some holsters do this better than others of course.

Leather holsters rely on the fit and finish of the leather to hold your firearm in place. This process of friction holding the gun in place may work great when you first own the holster. But over time as the leather ages, that friction between leather and firearm begins to lessen as the leather stretches and molds to not only your firearm but your body as well.

An ill-fitting or old leather holster only leads to loose firearms, which means more accidental drops, more negligent discharges, and more problems.

Conversely, durable Kydex holsters offer an unrivaled level of retention. Once molded to the shape and form of your weapon, Kydex holsters will not reshape or deform. This means that your concealed carry firearm will ride securely in your holster all day long, even as you move about.

Maintaining Your Concealed Holster

A diligent firearm owner is no stranger to the idea of maintaining your equipment. After all, at the end of every trip to the range, your weapons are broken down and cleaned. But just because you’re used to caring for your equipment doesn’t mean you want to spend all of your time doing it.

Leather holsters need to be cared for as regularly as your actual firearm in many cases. Leather cleaners, oils, waterproofers, and more all have to be added to your leather holster on a regular basis to ensure that it maintains its form and to prevent the leather from degrading.

Kydex, on the other hand, is simple to maintain. Simply remove the firearm, wipe down the holster with a damp cloth and let it dry overnight. That’s it.

Order Your Custom Kydex Gun Holsters Today

If you’re looking for the ideal holster for your concealed carry firearm, look no further than the Kydex holsters offered by On Your 6 Designs. We make each holster by hand to fit your distinct model and make of firearm, ensuring the highest quality of fit and retention. We back all of our products with an unbeatable lifetime warranty. Whether you carry a Glock, 1911, Sig, or anything in between, we’ve got the custom Kydex holster for you. Browse our firearm and magazine holsters today.

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