Holsters for Off-Body Carry: Bags, Purses, and Packs


1. Introduction to Off-Body Carry: Understanding Holsters for Bags, Purses, and Packs

1. Introduction to Off-Body Carry: Understanding Holsters for Bags, Purses, and Packs

Off-body carry is a popular choice for individuals who prefer to conceal their firearms in a bag, purse, or pack. It offers convenience and flexibility for those who may not find traditional on-body holsters suitable or comfortable. However, it’s essential to understand the different types of holsters designed specifically for off-body carry to ensure safe and secure firearm storage.

When choosing an off-body carry option, it’s crucial to prioritize safety while maintaining easy access in emergency situations. The right holster should securely hold your firearm while preventing accidental discharges or unauthorized access. Additionally, it should allow quick retrieval without fumbling through your bag.

1. Bag Holsters

One popular option for off-body carry is utilizing dedicated bag holsters. These specially designed bags feature built-in compartments with secure Retention Systems that keep the firearm accessible yet safely stored. Bag holsters typically have discreet openings strategically placed near the user’s dominant hand for quick draw times.

The advantage of using bag holsters is that they provide additional storage space for personal belongings along with the ability to conceal your weapon effectively within a stylish accessory.

2. Purse Holsters

Purse holsters are another common choice among individuals seeking an off-body carry solution. These specialized purses include designated compartments equipped with retention mechanisms such as straps or magnets that keep the firearm secure yet easily accessible when needed.

Purse holsters offer discretion by blending in seamlessly with everyday fashion choices while ensuring quick and efficient retrieval of your weapon when faced with potential threats.

3. Pack Holsters

For outdoor enthusiasts or those requiring larger storage capacities, pack holsters are ideal options for off-body carry. These backpacks or sling bags incorporate specialized compartments specifically designed to accommodate firearms securely.

Pack holsters often feature adjustable retention systems and padded compartments to ensure safe storage and ease of access. They are particularly popular among hikers, campers, or individuals who spend extended periods in outdoor environments.

Off-body carry offers a versatile alternative to traditional on-body holsters, allowing individuals to discreetly carry their firearms while maintaining comfort and convenience. However, it’s crucial to choose the right holster that prioritizes safety, accessibility, and secure firearm storage.

Remember always to follow local laws and regulations regarding concealed carry and consult with professionals or experts for guidance on selecting the best off-body carry option for your needs.

2. Key Factors to Consider When Choosing a Holster for Off-Body Carry

2. Key Factors to Consider When Choosing a Holster for Off-Body Carry

1. Accessibility and Ease of Draw

When selecting a holster for off-body carry, one of the most critical factors to consider is how easily you can access your firearm. In an emergency situation, quick and efficient access to your weapon can be a matter of life or death. Look for holsters that allow for smooth and rapid drawing, with features such as adjustable retention straps or quick-release mechanisms.

2. Concealment

Concealment is essential when carrying a firearm discreetly in a bag or purse. The holster you choose should provide adequate coverage and prevent printing, ensuring that your weapon remains hidden from prying eyes. Opt for holsters specifically designed for off-body carry, with features like padded linings or specialized compartments that help maintain concealment.

3. Security and Retention

It’s crucial to select a holster that securely holds your firearm in place during movement while still providing easy access when needed. Look for holsters with adjustable retention systems that allow you to customize the level of security based on your preferences and the specific situation you anticipate encountering.

4. Comfort

Since off-body carry typically involves carrying your firearm inside bags or purses, comfort becomes an important consideration. Choose holsters made from high-quality materials like nylon or leather that offer padding or cushioning where necessary to prevent discomfort caused by friction against your body during extended periods of wear.

5. Compatibility with Your Bag/Purse/Pack

Ensure compatibility between the holster and the bag, purse, or pack you intend to use for off-body carry. Consider factors such as size dimensions, attachment options (e.g., belt loops), and any additional requirements specific to the type of bag/purse/pack you plan to use. Compatibility will guarantee a secure fit and enhance your overall experience.

6. Safety Features

When carrying a loaded firearm, safety should always be a top priority. Look for holsters that provide additional safety features such as trigger guard protection or thumb breaks, which prevent accidental discharges and keep your weapon secure while in the holster.

7. Durability and Quality

Invest in a high-quality holster that is built to withstand regular use and potential wear and tear. Opting for reputable brands known for their craftsmanship ensures longevity, reliability, and peace of mind when it comes to the security of your firearm during off-body carry.

By considering these key factors when choosing a holster for off-body carry, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your specific needs, ensuring both accessibility and security without compromising on comfort or concealment. Remember to prioritize safety at all times while adhering to local laws and regulations regarding concealed carry practices.

3. Types of Holsters Suitable for Off-Body Carry: Bags, Purses, and Packs

3. Types of Holsters Suitable for Off-Body Carry: Bags, Purses, and Packs

1. Bag Holsters

Bag holsters are a popular choice for off-body carry as they offer ample space to accommodate your firearm along with other personal belongings. These holsters come in various sizes and styles, ranging from discreet shoulder bags to fashionable handbags. Bag holsters usually feature dedicated compartments or pockets with secure closures to ensure the firearm stays safely in place.

2. Purse Holsters

Purse holsters provide a convenient and discreet way of carrying your firearm off-body. Designed specifically for women, these holsters are integrated into stylish purses that resemble regular handbags but have a hidden compartment or holster pocket where the gun can be securely stored. Purse holsters often include additional safety features like lockable zippers or magnetic closures.

3. Pack Holsters

Ideal for outdoor enthusiasts or those needing extra storage space, pack holsters offer a versatile solution for off-body carry. These hols

4. Advantages and Disadvantages of Off-Body Carry Holsters

4. Advantages and Disadvantages of Off-Body Carry Holsters

When it comes to off-body carry holsters, there are both advantages and disadvantages to consider. While this method of carrying a firearm offers convenience and versatility, it also poses potential risks and drawbacks. Let’s explore the pros and cons of off-body carry holsters in more detail:


1. Concealment: Off-body carry holsters provide excellent concealment options, especially for those who prefer not to wear traditional belt or waistband holsters. Bags, purses, and packs can effectively hide the presence of a firearm.

2. Accessibility: With an off-body holster, your firearm is easily accessible without drawing unnecessary attention or making sudden movements that could potentially escalate a situation.

3. Versatility: Carrying your firearm in a bag or purse allows you to have it with you wherever you go, regardless of your outfit or attire. It offers flexibility for individuals who need to adapt their carry method based on different situations.


1. Security Concerns: One major drawback of off-body carry is the risk of theft or loss. Bags can be snatched away easily, leaving you unarmed when you need protection the most.

2. Access Delay: In critical situations where every second counts, reaching for your weapon from an off-body holster may take longer compared to other methods like appendix carry or waistband holsters.

3 . Bag Selection: Finding the right bag that properly secures your firearm while allowing quick access can be challenging.There might be some limitations regarding size constraints or specific compartments that accommodate holsters.

4. Retention: Off-body carry may present challenges in retaining control of your firearm during physical altercations. In the heat of the moment, an attacker may easily grab or disarm you if your weapon is not securely attached to your body.

5. Training Required: Carrying a firearm off-body requires proper training and practice to ensure safe handling, quick retrieval, and effective use when needed. It’s crucial to invest time in learning how to draw the weapon efficiently from various bags or purses.

In conclusion, while off-body carry holsters offer certain advantages such as concealment and accessibility, they also come with significant disadvantages including security concerns and access delays. It’s important for individuals considering this method of carry to carefully weigh these pros and cons before making a decision. Additionally, proper training is essential for anyone choosing off-body carry as their preferred method of carrying a firearm.

5. How to Properly Carry and Access Your Firearm in an Off-Body Holster

Carrying a firearm in an off-body holster, such as a bag, purse, or pack, requires careful consideration to ensure both safety and accessibility. Here are some essential tips on how to properly carry and access your firearm when using an off-body holster:

Select the Right Holster

Choosing the right off-body holster is crucial for safe and secure firearm carry. Look for holsters specifically designed for carrying firearms, with features like reinforced compartments, retention straps or locks, and adjustable dividers to prevent accidental discharge.

Maintain Trigger Discipline

When carrying a firearm in an off-body holster, it’s vital to maintain proper trigger discipline at all times. Ensure there are no objects or loose items inside the compartment that could come into contact with the trigger. Always keep your finger outside the trigger guard until you’re ready to shoot.

Practice Safe Storage

When not actively carrying your firearm, it’s important to store it securely. Use lockable compartments or dedicated pockets within your bag or pack that provide additional protection against unauthorized access. Consider investing in holsters that incorporate RFID-blocking technology for added security.

Be Mindful of Accessibility

While off-body holsters offer convenience, quick access is crucial during emergencies. Position your bag or pack where you can easily reach it without fumbling around excessively while keeping other belongings organized within separate compartments.

Maintain Concealment

If you choose an off-body carry method due to its discreetness advantage over traditional holsters worn on the body, make sure your chosen bag or purse adequately conceals the presence of a firearm from prying eyes by opting for designs specifically made for concealed carry purposes.

Remember that effective concealment contributes significantly to your overall safety, as it prevents potential threats from identifying you as a target or attempting to disarm you.

Train and Practice

Properly carrying and accessing your firearm from an off-body holster requires regular training and practice. Familiarize yourself with the specific holster’s features, such as release mechanisms or access points, and practice drawing your firearm in a safe environment until it becomes second nature.

By following these guidelines, carrying a firearm in an off-body holster can provide both security and convenience. Remember always to prioritize safety by choosing the right equipment, maintaining trigger discipline, practicing safe storage practices when not actively carrying your firearm, ensuring accessibility during emergencies, maintaining concealment for added security benefits, and regularly training to enhance proficiency.

6. Best Practices for Concealment and Discretion in Off-Body Carry

1. Choose the Right Bag or Purse

When it comes to off-body carry, selecting the right bag or purse is crucial for both concealment and discretion. Look for options specifically designed for concealed carry, with dedicated compartments or holsters that securely hold your firearm. Opt for bags made from durable materials that won’t attract unnecessary attention, and choose a size that suits your needs while still maintaining a low profile.

2. Positioning Matters

To effectively conceal your firearm, consider how you position your bag or purse during off-body carry. It’s best to keep the bag close to your body at all times, either by wearing it crossbody or keeping it within arm’s reach. Avoid placing it on chairs or leaving it unattended in public spaces where it could easily be accessed by unauthorized individuals.

3. Practice Retention Techniques

In off-body carry situations, retaining control of your firearm is essential to ensure safety and prevent thefts or accidents. Familiarize yourself with retention techniques specific to carrying in bags or purses, such as using holsters with retention straps, trigger guards, or other securing mechanisms meant to keep the firearm in place even during movement.

4. Stay Mindful of Your Environment

Maintaining situational awareness is crucial when relying on off-body carry methods. Stay mindful of your surroundings at all times and assess any potential risks before reaching into your bag or purse to retrieve your firearm if needed. In crowded areas where pickpocketing may occur more frequently, remain vigilant and take extra precautions.

5. Regularly Inspect Your Bag/Purse

Perform regular inspections of the bag/purse you use for off-body carry to ensure its integrity and functionality. Check for any signs of wear, loose stitching, or damaged compartments that could compromise the safety and concealment of your firearm. Replace worn-out bags/purses promptly to maintain optimal security.

6. Train with Your Off-Body Carry Method

Practice makes perfect, even when it comes to off-body carry. Regularly train with your chosen bag or purse to become comfortable and proficient in accessing your firearm quickly and smoothly. Consider seeking professional training specifically tailored to off-body carry methods for additional guidance on techniques, drawing from concealment, and situational drills.

Remember, while off-body carry can offer convenience in certain situations, it also presents unique challenges. It’s important to weigh the risks and benefits carefully before choosing this method of carrying a firearm concealed. By following these best practices for concealment and discretion in off-body carry situations, you can enhance your safety while maintaining a low profile in public settings.

7. Safety Considerations for Off-Body Carry Holsters: Protecting Yourself and Others

1. Ensure Trigger Guard Protection

When selecting a holster for off-body carry, it is crucial to choose one that provides proper trigger guard protection. This feature prevents accidental discharge of your firearm while it’s securely stored in the holster. Look for holsters with rigid materials or those specifically designed to cover the trigger area completely.

2. Retention Systems Matter

A reliable retention system is vital when carrying a firearm off-body. Opt for holsters that offer secure retention mechanisms such as snap buttons, straps, or adjustable tension screws. These features minimize the risk of unintentional access to your weapon, ensuring it stays safely in place until you need it.

3. Choose High-Quality Materials

The durability and strength of your chosen holster play a significant role in safety considerations. Select holsters made from high-quality materials like Kydex, leather, or ballistic nylon as they provide excellent structural integrity and longevity.

4. Regularly Inspect Your Holster

Perform routine checks on your off-body carry holster to ensure its functionality and reliability remain intact over time. Examine the stitching, fasteners, and attachments regularly for signs of wear or damage that could compromise its ability to securely hold your firearm.

5. Practice Safe Handling Techniques

Safety always comes first when handling firearms – even with an off-body carry setup! Familiarize yourself with safe handling practices such as keeping your finger outside the trigger guard until ready to shoot and never pointing the muzzle at anything you don’t intend to shoot.

a) Keep Unsecured Holsters Out of Reach:

Avoid leaving unsecured holsters within reach of unauthorized individuals, especially children or those unfamiliar with firearms. Store your holsters in a secure location to prevent any unauthorized access.

b) Always Reholster with Care:

When reholstering your firearm, take the necessary time and care to ensure it is properly seated within the holster. Rushing this process can lead to accidental discharges or improper retention.

6. Holster Placement Matters

Consider where you position your off-body carry holster for optimal safety and accessibility. Avoid placing it in areas prone to excessive movement or potential damage, as this could compromise its ability to retain your weapon securely.

Remember, these safety considerations are essential when selecting and using an off-body carry holster. Prioritize protecting yourself and those around you by choosing a high-quality holster that offers trigger guard protection, reliable retention systems, and regular maintenance checks. Practice safe handling techniques at all times to ensure a responsible approach when carrying firearms off-body.

8. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Holsters for Off-Body Carry

1. What is off-body carry?

Off-body carry refers to carrying a firearm or weapon in a bag, purse, or pack rather than on your person. It provides an alternative method of concealed carry for those who find traditional holsters uncomfortable or impractical.

2. Is off-body carry safe?

Off-body carry can be safe if done correctly and with proper consideration. It requires responsible gun handling, secure storage options, and constant awareness of the bag’s location to prevent unauthorized access.

3. Are there specific bags designed for off-body carry?

Yes, there are specially designed bags, purses, and packs available in the market that cater specifically to off-body carry needs. These products often feature dedicated compartments with reinforced holsters or retention systems for secure firearm storage.

4. How do you choose the right holster for off-body carry?

Choosing the right holster depends on several factors such as size of firearm, personal preference, accessibility requirements, and level of security desired. Look for holsters that offer proper retention mechanisms and ensure compatibility with your chosen bag or purse.

5. Can I use any bag or purse for off-body carry?

While it is possible to use any bag or purse for off-body carry purposes, it is crucial to consider certain aspects such as accessibility features, weapon compartment reinforcements,and ease of drawing your firearm quickly and safely.

6. What are some advantages of off-body carry?

Off-body carry provides increased concealment options without compromising comfort levels compared to traditional waistband holsters.It also offers easy access when seated in vehicles or other situations where drawing from a hip holster may prove challenging.

7. Are there any disadvantages to off-body carry?

Off-body carry may have a few drawbacks, including the risk of the bag being misplaced or stolen, potential difficulty in accessing the weapon quickly during high-stress situations, and the need for constant vigilance to prevent unauthorized access.

8. How can I ensure safe off-body carry?

To ensure safe off-body carry, follow these guidelines:
– Choose a bag or purse specifically designed for concealed carry.
– Maintain situational awareness at all times and avoid leaving your bag unattended.
– Practice drawing your firearm from your chosen holster regularly to build muscle memory.
– Keep the weapon unloaded until absolutely necessary and follow all local laws and regulations regarding concealed carry.

Remember that responsible gun ownership includes proper training in firearm handling techniques regardless of how you choose to carry.

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