Three Keys to Wearing a “Tuckable” Holster

Three Keys to Wearing a “Tuckable” Holster
This DeSantis' Pocket-Tuk with an S&W M&P Shield .in 40 S&W. It has a Crimson Trace laser installed and is set up for left hand.

A "tuckable" is a holster designed to be worn inside the waistband of your pants. A clip that fastens the holster to a belt allows a shirt to be tucked over the pistol and between the attaching clip and the holster. This allows the gun and holster, except for the belt clip, to be covered by a tucked-in shirt. But having one work perfectly for you and for the gun you'll be carrying in it takes some thought and experimentation. These three fundamentals will guide you.

1. Conceal It Properly

Tuckables do not give you a cloak of invisibility. With most of them, the on your belt will be visible. Also, the gun under your shirt can “print,” or show through, many fabrics.

I have found that you get better concealment with a lighter fabric if the shirt is worn outside the pants and not tucked, which is another option with these holsters. Make sure the shirt is long enough to cover the gun when you move or bend over.

Bianchi Model 135 Suppression Holster
This is the Bianchi Model 135 Suppression holster with a Model 1911 pistol. This comfortable holster has a padded, anti-microbial mesh fabric on the body side.

2. Keep It Comfortable

Not all holsters are created equal, and of course, neither are handguns. I love Model 1911 pistols, but all their protruding levers and latches will file your hide until you bleed if you don't pad them. Minimalist holsters, like the Galco Skyops Holster or the Blackhawk Leather Tuckable Holster, work better with a "smoother" pistol like a Smith & Wesson M&P or a Glock than with a Model 1911.

The DeSantis Pocket-Tuk is one of the few holsters I could find that fits the S&W M&P Shield with a Crimson Trace laser sight installed. I find the smooth-sided Shield very comfortable to wear with this holster, and it is one of my preferred warm weather carry rigs.

Three Keys to Wearing a “Tuckable” Holster
Galco Skyops and Blackhawk Suede Leather Tuckable Holsters
This is the Galco Skyops Holster and Blackhawk Leather Tuckable Holster, both with Model 1911 pistols. These holsters expose a lot of the pistol, so a smooth handgun will be more comfortable.

Leather-backed tuckable holsters such as the Galco KingTuk, CrossBreed SuperTuck, or one of the multitudes of clones now available will put a leather barrier between you and part or all of the gun. Such holsters are more comfortable because the gun won't be directly against your skin or undershirt.

Some of the most comfortable tuckable holsters I have tried have a fabric backing, such as the Bianchi Model 135 Suppression holster. My 1911 rides low in this holster and the padded, anti-microbial mesh fabric is very comfortable against my body. The leather keeps the slide, hammer, and safety from touching me, so it's very comfortable to carry. The padding makes it thicker than some other holsters, but in my opinion, the comfort makes up for that.

Three Keys to Wearing a “Tuckable” Holster
Eric Reynolds demonstrates drawing from a tuckable holster.

3. Use it for the Right Purpose Tuckable holsters are made for concealment, not speed. While you may be able to draw and shoot in less than one second with your competition holster, that is not going happen with a tuckable. I did some testing and found that the average draw and shoot time was more like 2.2 to 3 seconds, even with practice.

Reholstering the gun may be difficult with some designs. Also, be very careful when reholstering, particularly with a striker-fired gun. There have been instances where a person’s shirt got inside the trigger guard, discharging the gun.

Three Keys to Wearing a “Tuckable” Holster
Galco Kingtuk IWB Holster
The Galco KingTuk is one of the most popular tuckable holsters on the market.