Best Paddle Holster

What is The Best Paddle Holster?-Your Absolute Guide 2023

If you do not have time to review our guide then our research suggest that the We the People Holsters’ OWB Holster is the best paddle holster on the market still to this day.

You know you have chosen the best paddle holster for your concealed weapon when it fits snugly against your hip. The smooth surface rests comfortably against your body. Despite your movement, the holster keeps your firearm in place. Choosing a paddle holster, whether you are a civilian or a law enforcement agent, means researching the best materials and design.  You will also need to do the same when looking for the best IWB holster.

Luckily we have decided to go ahead and do the research for you. Our examination comprised of our reliable analytical methods starting off with our literary search and speaking with experts in the field. Our results are documented below. Don’t forget to check out our list of tuckable holsters as well.

However before you dive in, always remember to follow gun safety when handling or carrying a firearm.

Best Paddle Holsters

Product Reviews

Here are our reviews on paddle holsters from each category of material. Each has its pros and cons based on experts’ and customers’ reviews. 

Safariland’s ALS Concealment Paddle

What is the best paddle holster?

ALS features the simplicity and security of a top-opening design. Your weapon secures automatically as it holstered but can be drawn naturally and with ease with a swipe of the thumb release. Constructed from a nylon blend, the ALS will not scratch your firearm and is moisture resistant.

Safariland Concealment Paddle is reasonably priced and has received 4.6 out of 5 stars on Amazon. Over a thousand customers have rated this holster. 81% of the reviewers rated this product 5 stars.


  • Automatic locking system secures the weapon
  • Fast draw
  • Conceals easily with a close fit
  • Non-abrasive nylon blend protects firearm finish
  • Comes with concealment paddle belt loop
  • Fits Ruger American .45 and similarly sized firearms


  • Some reports that there was a tight fit for recommended firearms
  • Plastic is light and thin

We the People Holsters’ OWB Holster

We recently had a chance to review this paddle holster. Check out our in-depth review for more details.

One thing that sticks out about this holster is the hooks on the paddle itself (pictured above). Per the manufacturer, they help anchor the holster to the waist. They do this by gripping your belt or your pants themself. We were skeptical at first, but they do work.

The holster stayed in place when wearing it while working around our farm. Far too often, we see paddle holsters have a nasty habit of moving around, but not this holster. The hooks also work great at keeping your holster in place when drawing your firearm.

We the People Holsters’ OWB holster is also one of the most adjustable OWB holsters on the market. This makes the holster very comfortable to wear. It also allows your pistol to be right where you want it when drawing your weapon.

We the People Holsters’ OWB Holster, have become our top pick for the best paddle holster due to all the features that benefit you. For more details about We the People Holsters, check out our review on their Freedom Holster, or our all-inclusive review of We The People Holsters


  • Cost
  • Ease of Use (easy to draw and reholster firearm)
  • Comfort
  • Trigger Guard
  • Durable
  • Adjustability


  • Loose-fitting to firearm and must tighten retention screw tightly.
  • Sweat guard

Galco’s Paddle Lite Holster

If you are searching for a proven belt-lock copolymer injected mold paddle design, the Galco is a comfortable and efficient product. The Galco is a comfortable holster and has a forward cant for an easy and fast draw. The retention strap keeps your weapon secure, and the thumb break feature allows a quick and easy release.

Affordable and lightweight, this holster is ideal for smaller guns. For those that love leather holsters, the robust design and quality leather will hold up for years. It comes with great reviews from Cabela’s.


  • Belt-lock injection-molded paddle
  • Secures with a thumb break retention strap
  • Made of quality materials
  • Lightweight and comfortable
  • Affordable
  • Good for open carry


  • Not suitable for concealed carry
  • Some reports of not fitting firearm well
  • Fit is tight at first, material needs use to stretch

Concealment Express’ OWB Paddle Holster

The Concealment Express OWB is a highly rated, affordable option for those looking for a holster with adjustable cant and posi-click retention. Made in the US, the Precision Aluminium Molds are made and designed in-house to ensure quality and a perfect fit for your weapon. 

OWB conceals easily and fits comfortably. It is designed for being carried high on the hip. The posi-click feature keeps the gun in place, and the click lets you know the weapon is secured. The OWB is higher priced than similar products but still very reasonably priced for the quality.


  • Worn comfortable on the waistband
  • Easily conceals weapons
  • Made from quality materials and very durable
  • Undercut Trigger Guard
  • Accommodates threaded barrels and clears sights
  • Posi-Click retention and cant
  • Guaranteed for life


  • Some users not happy with its concealment
  • Secures to the inside of the waistband
  • Doesn’t fit as tight to the body as reported

Masc Premium Leather OWB Paddle Holster Open Top

This elegantly designed Masc holster was handcrafted with the finest quality leather. More expensive than its counterparts, Masc has world-wide attention for its high quality and innovative design. Reviewers love the quality, comfort, and classic leather look.

Wall thickness of the holster retains its strength and durability for years. The leather is free from chemicals, and all the non-leather accessories are made with quality materials that are safe for the gun, clothing, and skin.   


  • Made from premium grade leather
  • Hand molded for the perfect fit
  • Adjustable tension screw for customized retention
  • Movable polymer paddle for adjustable carrying cant
  • Easy on and off design
  • Can be used with or without a belt
  • Quickly switches between the vertical and horizontal stance


Fobus Standard Paddle Holster

This Fobus Standard Paddle Holster is perfect for your concealed carry gun’s needs. Made of lightweight yet durable unique polymer, this holster can be washed out with soap and water it offers a low-profile design for concealability and passive retention for rapid presentation.

The rubberized paddle insert provides extra stability, and a lifetime warranty backs the holster.


  • Cost 
  • Made of high-density polymer 
  • Easy on-off design 
  • Leight Weight 
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Adequate protection for gun  
  • Good trigger guard 
  • Steel reinforced rivet attachment


  • Only for right-handed people 
  • The draw is awkward without a belt on 
  • None adjustable retention 

Alien Gear ShapeShift OWB Paddle Holster

The ShapeShift OWB Paddle Holster is Alien Gear Holsters’ best paddle holster. It offers a retention lip, adjustable retention bump, and thumb release, as well as a 12-degree cant adjustment to give you the perfect draw. With its durable construction and Safe Shift Shell, this holster will keep your firearm protected and stable while you carry it. 

It is also comfortable and good-looking, with an injection-molded Shift Shell. The Alien Gear ShapeShift OWB Paddle Holster is perfect for any carrier who wants a versatile and safe holster.


  • Made in the USA 
  • It can used for other carry methods thanks to the 
  • ShapeShift Modular Holster System
  • Lifetime warranty 
  • 30-day money-back “test drive.”
  • Durable 
  • Trigger guard
  • Adjustable cant and retention 


  • Price 
  • Printing (not easy to conceal)
  • The paddle may wear out over time 

Guide to the Best Paddle Holster

Weather your tired of carrying your Glock 19 IWB, or just want a new holster it pays to know what to look for in a paddle holster. So how do you find the best paddle holster?

What to Look for in Paddle Holsters

When looking for a holster that will be comfortable, sturdy, and provides discrete protection for your sidearm, certain qualities are essential. SOFREP Military Grade Company breaks down the vital features of a quality holster.

One of the best features is that the holster can be removed quickly and easily. Paddle holsters are a good choice because they can be concealed and carried under outerwear. In fact, paddle holsters that ride higher on the body that carry a smaller gun may even be concealed under a tee shirt.

The key to a good holster is the paddle. This is how the holster attaches to your waistband. This system will determine how securely your sidearm stays connected to your body. The paddle is critical in that it must be of sufficient durability and quality. This ensures your weapon will be locked in place and ready to be accessed quickly and easily. 

Fit and gun retention are other essential features. The holster should be rigid enough to keep a single pistol securely against your body as you go about your daily life. High-end holsters made of plastic have retention shells that have been made from a mold for your firearm. These are more expensive but provide an excellent fit. 

The material from which your holster is made will have its benefits and drawbacks. To determine which holster will be best for your needs, consider the advantages and disadvantages of the production materials. 

Holster Materials

Gunner’s Alley lists the most popular materials currently used to manufacture paddle holsters, which are leather, Kydex, nylon, and molded plastic. 

Based on our research, each of these materials has benefits and limitations. Below is what found as the features that make these materials a good choice and their pros and cons.


Muddy River Tactical explains that leather is one of the most popular choices and is a standard material for holsters. Leather has been a mainstay material for paddle holsters by police and military for many years.


  • Durability 
  • Reparability
  • Wears well 
  • Comfort 
  • Draws quietly 
  • Availability 


  • Can be expensive
  • Maybe harder on a gun’s finish
  • Holds moisture
  • May take 6 months to get a non-production holster


Kydex is a hard plastic that be molded. It has become an industry standard for holster material. Including IWB holsters for the Ruger LCP


  • Thin 
  • Light
  • Switchable Attachments
  • Durable
  • Fast and consistent draw
  • Doesn’t collapse


  • Appearance
  • • Not particularly comfortable
  • Will bend in high heat


A softer material that has the advantage of being very flexible. As Shooting Sport USA points out Nylon come in different degrees of flexibility in units called Denier.


  • Durable
  • Layered
  • Adjustable
  • Quick-release
  • Inexpensive
  • Light-weight
  • Comfortable


  • Not fitted like hard plastic
  • Requires a retention strap

Molded Plastic

A lot like kydex, but is more resistant to heat. It also is can be a better fit to your firearm compared to Kydex.


  • Excellent fit
  • Molded 
  • Waterproof
  • Comfortable


  • Expensive
  • Firearm specific
  • Trigger release on draw

Best Way to Wear Paddle Holsters

Here are our practical tips for wearing a paddle holster.  You can always check out our IWB Carry Position Guide to find out more.

  • For concealed weapons, select a subcompact handgun
  • Check to make sure the safety works on the gun you will use
  • Check your rigs set up to determine to ensure your holster is fully functioning; this includes if it has a modular design and will need switching done. 
  • When placing the gun in the holster ensure it is properly seated

***Now consider when wearing paddle holsters the effect on comfort and performance.***

  • Always wear a belt as it will prevent the holster from pulling out and provide a raised contour for better drawing action
  • Carry your weapon at a 15-degree forward cant which allows for a better grip when drawing
  • Know if you have a passive or active retention system or a combo and learn how to use that system
  • Watch this video for tips on making adjustments to paddle holsters

Paddle Holsters for Everyday Carry is an informational YouTube video on wearing paddle holsters. 

Precautions for Using Paddle Holsters

One of the sources of contention with paddle holsters is the retention system. Passive retention uses friction between the firearm and holster to hold it in place. Some passive systems use retention screws to secure the handgun.

Active retention systems use a mechanism to hold the firearms in place. These can include pushbuttons, thumb straps, twist locks, and Velcro holsters. Active retention systems hold handguns in place but require practice to use the release mechanism quickly and efficiently.

Some of the disadvantages of paddle holsters include the following:

Security – paddle holsters can be dislodged if not worn properly and are easier to remove when someone tries to steal your gun. A quick search on Youtube will show you videos of this happing.

Limits wardrobe – paddle holsters need to be worn under loose shirts or jackets to be concealed.

Large size – some people find the size of paddle holsters a disadvantage, especially for slender people.

Alternative to the Best Paddle Holster

BLACKHAWK’s Serpa Sportster Holster

The very affordable Blackhawk Serpa has over 3,500 reviews with an impressive 4.5 stars. The patented Serpa design was developed for range and civilian use. Its injection-molded holster is constructed with a traditional polymer. 

Weighing 8.8 ounces, Blackhawk Serpa is lightweight and versatile and comes with an interchangeable belt loop rig. The cant of the holster adjusts to suit your needs. The molded polymer makes this a hardy holster, gives a smooth draw, and keeps the weapon safe with an auto-lock system. 


  • Paddle platform makes for easy placement and removal
  • Multiple options for securing this holster
  • Affordable
  • The design makes it easy to conceal
  • Auto-lock 
  • Quick and straightforward retention button
  • Durable and lightweight


  • Reports that the grab hook on the paddle hinders its removal
  • Toggle switch to release pistol may take some work to use quickly
  • Have seen reports of people having accidental discharge with these holsters. You MUST Train with it.

Bottom Line

When it comes to the best paddle holster, We the People Holsters’ OWB Holster is our top recommendation. A lightweight holster with adjustable cant, height, and retention gives you a comfortable holster that is easy to draw your firearm from.

The holster also comes with a lifetime warranty if you purchase it directly from the manufacturer. The producer of this holster also has a good return policy. This shows they have faith that you will like the holster and not want to return it.

There are a lot of good paddle holsters on the market, but you would be hard press to find one that best We the People Holsters’ as a paddle holster. Now, check out our list for the best drop holster to really up your game. Or if you want a great holster check out our review on the Urban Carry G2!

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