If you do not have time to read our review our research suggests the Safariland 6304 ALS Tactical Leg Holster is the best drop leg holster.
You carry a pistol? Excellent, we do too! Depending on your circumstances, you need to make an informed decision about which holster is best for the job. Many military and law enforcement personnel are opting for drop leg holsters nowadays. Drop leg holsters are iconic and thought of as status symbols by many. However, there are some serious things to consider before going this route.
Outdoor Methods: Of course we will help you decide if this is the right method of carry, and which holster you should buy!
For starters, many gun veterans in the community think the drop leg holster is outdated. While others rave about how it is ideal for a smooth and quick draw. Both sides make valid points, let’s say you did want one. How would you decide which is the best drop leg holster for you?
That is the question we have been working on in the lab lately. Our findings are stated below. Yet, first things first, what are these holsters actually used for?
Our Pick for the Best Drop Leg Holsters:
What is the Purpose of a Leg Holster?
Great question. We find Jerking the Trigger offers some great explanations. Drop leg holsters or thigh carry holsters are a common method for open carry. A drop leg holster for open carry can be ideal in many circumstances. Thigh of drop leg holsters come in handy when you have to clear the hip belt on a backpack. Some people use them when they need to wear a repelling harness. They have even been deemed as a fashion statement. Finally, we would be shocked if we did not see these holsters being worn in open carry states.
Some even consider using a drop leg holster or the thigh carry method as the “cool guy” way to carry, but do these holsters hold up when it comes down to it? We will get into that later.
First you need to know what is your reason for considering this type of holster?
We created a list of questions to help aid you in this.
• Do you need to clear a hip belt?
• Are you wearing some type of harness?
• Do you carry your gun for several hours a day and get a sore back?
• Do you have lower back problems?
• Are you in need of accessing the pistol from virtually any position?
• Do you want to carry your weapon in the most natural position?
• Are you looking for function over concealment?
Are Drop Leg Holsters Good?
Drop leg holsters have a long and distinguished history. American Rifleman explains that the thigh or leg holster is also synonymous with a tactical holster. The great grandfather was the Safariland 6004, which was designed to be worn at the thigh level. It was designed to be quickly and easily accessible, with the shooting arm hanging naturally right at it.
It’s widely thought that the thigh rig was strategically located to wear the gun down lower so as not to impede body armor. This is not true. The very first modern thigh holster was designed for a Navy SEAL who required a holster that would not interfere when being picked up at high-speed by a Zodiac.
From there, the leg gun holster evolved into the Safariland 6004 and was dubbed a tactical holster. It became one of the most popular tactical holsters ever issued to individuals in the military and law enforcement professions. They served well in many areas, but as arenas and other equipment changes, so do the designs of holsters.
What are the Advantages/Benefits of Drop Leg Holsters?
Outbags USA discusses the benefits of thigh style holsters. They agree that finding the right holster can be a tricky process. Whether you are new to carrying a pistol or a veteran, there are many options to consider.
When weighing your options, you need to look at the benefits and the drawbacks of the style holder you are contemplating. If you can check off more pros than cons, it’s probably safe to pursue that style. Let’s look at some of the advantages of a thigh mounted holster.
According to Outbags, leg gun holsters afford some of the best carrying options because they allow such easy access to your firearm. They have gained popularity over the last few years because they will enable the gun to be on the level where your hand hangs naturally. If your handgun is being used for tactical situations and you need to draw quickly, there is no better placement for your weapon.
Another benefit of a leg style holster is that it doesn’t restrict the user’s movement. You can be more mobile with the gun holstered on your thigh. An added bonus is that the thigh holster doesn’t take up much space on your belt and frees up room for other gear or guns. Here are some other benefits:
- Easy to reach regardless of hand preference
- The weight of the weapon is in a more natural location and feels more natural
- Holster will not cause discomfort with movement
- No need to worry about clothing
- Can be reached quickly and fired from any position
- Ideal in critical situations where speed is essential
- Can be used with longer barrel guns
- Lower grip position allows longer guns to be drawn without getting caught on the waistband
Who Should Use a Drop-Down Holster?
While tactical drop leg holsters have been used predominantly used by the military and police force, civilians that open carry are also fans of leg holsters.
Thigh carried holsters are ideal if you don’t need to conceal your weapon. For around the home or a range, the leg style holster is convenient. When at the range or at any handgun shooting sporting event, the holster allows for easy access and a quick draw.
Some prefer carrying their backup handgun in the woods using thigh holster over inside the waistband (IWB) or outside the waistband (OWB). Holsters at the waist can snag more easily on trees and branches. Plus, your holster and weapon will leave room for your arms to carry out other functions without being impeded by gear around the hip area.
In a nutshell, the drop leg holster is straightforward and an excellent choice when open carry is allowed.
What’s the Best Way to Use a Drop leg Holster & How Does it Work?
Lightfighter.net gives advice on how to wear a drop leg holster. They like this type of holster because it sits low on the body, and it is easy to draw without snagging body armor or clothing. Note: This is dependent on wearing the holster properly, which many people fail to do.
For the holster to be most effective, it should be worn tightly on the thigh and not left dangling as the wearer is walking. Wearing the holster correctly will add to the comfort and increase usability and efficiency.
To attach the rig, first secure it to the leg and thigh straps. Tighten securely. Fasten the belt loop by pulling the top of the loop behind then over your belt. Once the holster is secured, you are ready to insert the weapon.
Tips to Wearing a Thigh Holster Properly:
- Consider wearing a quality gun belt as web belts become uncomfortable and the weight of the sidearm will make it stretch
- If attaching to a web belt make sure the suspension strap is behind the belt loop on the shooting side to prevent riding forward
- Situate the holster as high on the leg as possible to decrease the time it takes to reach the weapon
- Position the holster on the outer thigh between the 1 o’clock and 3 o’clock position
- Consider a holster with a molded plastic platform for increased stability – they also allow for attaching accessories
- Be sure to use a retention device to keep your sidearm from falling out or dislodging while moving
When worn correctly, the drop leg holster will provide an advantage to those who wear bulky equipment. People will be able to draw the firearm more quickly. However, it is critical that the holster must be worn securely against the body. You also need to remember to practice drawing from this position to be able to perform with acceptable speed and efficiency.
Precautions for Thigh Holsters
Obviously, if you are carrying a concealed weapon, a drop leg holster would not be the right choice. There are other disadvantages to having your gun on your leg as well. Here are some restrictions to keep in mind when using a drop leg style holster.
- More challenging to maintain control of your weapon
- Holster moves when you are walking or running
- Allows for a better opportunity of having your gun stolen
- A latch or retention device is needed to secure the weapon
- If worn too low, it can decrease the time it takes to reach the weapon
- Can get snagged on objects such as bushes or in vehicles
- Because it rides lower on the body, it takes longer to raise the gun’s sights to eye level
What to Look for in a Drop Leg Holster
Access – You need easy access to your firearm
Retention – A passive retention or friction should be sufficient to hold your pistol in place, but the rig should also include a backup mechanism to keep your gun in the holster.
Secure attachment – Your rig should be securely attached to you. It should be supported laterally by side straps and vertically by one or two belt loops.
Placement – When wearing a drop leg holster, the grip of the weapon should be around the same level as your pant’s pocket. Your gun should be within a finger’s reach of your hand when it hangs naturally at your side.
Location – The rig should be able to be worn far enough up the thigh to provide access without having to bend at the waist when drawing.
Material – There are advantages and disadvantages to the material the holster is made of. Kydex, leather, and nylon are the most popular choices. Yet, choose a synthetic material if you want light and maintenance-free rig or if your holster will be exposed to dirt and moisture. Leather is tough but soft and will look better with time. It is not resistant to moisture and takes some effort to be maintained.
Drop Leg Holster Reviews
The Blackhawk Serpa is made of durable carbon-fiber composite material. It was designed to be comfortable and breathable when worn against the thigh. The material molds and conforms to your leg. Check out some of the customer reviews for yourself.
- Durable carbon-fiber composite material
- Very comfortable
- Comes with 2 belt straps
- Stable on the thigh
- Attractive black matt finish
- Great retention
- After the initial set-up, very easy to use
- Requires a separate belt or it’s not comfortable
- Height strap slips
- Problems with customer service
Orpaz Drop Leg Holster fits a wide selection of Glock models. Orpaz’s rig is custom molded using Nylon 6 Polymer. It is such an awsome holster that it has even been combat tested. The material is durable but also flexible and resistant to abrasion. It is designed with a tension adjustment screw that can be used to change the placement of your firearm and add to retention.
- Has several options for holster styles
- Fits an extensive range of Glock models
- Fits securely on a 1.5 to a 2-inch belt
- Fully adjustable for retention and rotation
- Molded Nylon 6 Polymer is strong and durable
- Designed by an Israeli SWAT unit
- Reasonably priced
- Holder may slip around belts
- May grip the gun too tightly
- Lacks secondary retention
Safariland Tactical Holster has an exclusive Automatic Locking System as the primary security and also includes an internal locking device. Your weapon will be safely retained in all directions, even when the primary method is open. Thre are three new design elements, including the “lock in place,” thumb operation, and rotating hood system.
Since there is no retention snap holding the holster in, you get a smooth single-motion draw. Better protection has been implemented against theft. The molded laminate protects against scratches and dents. The lightweight harness is stable, comfortable, and simple to adjust.
- Battle proven product
- Secured with automatic locking system
- Fully adjustable for the most secure fit
- Mounting holes for accessories
- Straight draw and easy thumb release
- Safari laminate construction
- Adjustable vertical leg strap
- Very high customer satisfaction
- Doesn’t work with SureFire X-series WeaponLights
- Holster gets dirty quickly and becomes gritty
Blackhawk Level 2 Serpa features the SERPA auto lock release system and has a passive retention adjustment screw to keep your firearm locked into place. The full-length holster protects your weapons rear sights, and the flexible leg platform conforms comfortably to your leg.
The quick disconnect swivels buckles make this holster mount and dismount quickly and easily. It has accessory mounting points and extra holes for optional bungee retention. The rubberized leg straps prevent the holster from sliding around. Last but not least, this bad boy is comfortable and lightweight.
- Swivel buckles for natural fit on belt loops and allow for quick disconnect
- Y-harness suspension system provides a comfortable fit and keeps holster vertical in different body position
- Can still use your pants pockets
- Has Mounting points for accessories
- Rubberized leg straps keep the holster from sliding
- Passive retention and SERPA auto-lock
- Reasonably priced
- Does not fit newer sp2022 with 1913 rail system pistols
- Problems with customer service
- Can’t be attached to a Blackhawk paddle or belt
The Nehostertfy Adjustable Holster is fully adjustable to ensure a proper fit and comfort. Nehostertfy engineered this holster to meet the demands of tactical operations. The holster comes with a pouch for a flashlight mount as well. We really liked Nehostertfy’s quick thumb release mechanism and that the holster’s retention system keeps the pistol secured in the holster. The fully adjustable design of the holster will fit both women and men.
- Made from a durable and lightweight material
- Wrap around design is fully adjustable with Velcro strap
- Attaches to the waist belt and thigh
- Has a flashlight mount
- Non-slip backing and quick-release buckles
- The stitching quality is not consistent
- Holster needs a larger flashlight holder
- The holster’s one-size-fits-all system needs improvement
The Leathertown Holster is crafted with heavy-duty top grain leather, and designed by world-renowned craftsmen with hand precision tooling. The belt is constructed with two layers of grain leather back-to-back, so both sides of the holster are smooth. Metal is placed between the layers to keep the shape and maintain rigidity of the rig. This classic holster is durable and long-lasting and designed for a fast draw.
- Double layer of high-quality leather
- Metal layer adds rigidity and retains shape
- Classic look and design
- Hand tooled
- Designed for a quick and smooth draw
- Hammer thong strap is adjustable for large or small hammers
- Not adjustable if you don’t order the right size
- Too narrow for a 38
- Leather must be maintained and will degrade in moisture
Wow, that was a lot of holsters, but which rig is the best? Based on our research, the Safariland Tactical Holster is our top recommendation for you to check out. Besides being reasonably priced, Safariland has an outstanding locking system that still allows you to easily and quickly draw your pistol. It is also one of the few drop leg holsters designed to prevent theft.
Well, that’s all, folks!! What do you think? Is a drop leg holster right for you? Did we miss any that you think should be added? If so, please let us know below. Until next time!