Tips for Carrying Concealed a Full-Size Gun

I'm often asked about why I carry a full-size gun versus a sub-compact. When I first started carrying, the only gun I owned was my HKVP9. Then I got my Glock 43, which is a great option for carrying concealed. However, I preferred for so long to carry my HKVP9 because it's the gun that fit in my hand the best, the one that I preferred to shoot, and at the time, the one I trained with the most. While many think it's impractical to carry a full-size gun, especially being a woman (with us being smaller in frame than men), I will tell you that you can. But keep in mind, how I carry and the activities that make up my day will differ from yours so what works and is comfortable to me might not be for you.

Since the gun is larger, I typical carry my full-size at about the 11 'o clock position to help minimize printing and keep the grip from poking out. However, with this wrap style jacket I was able to carry in my standard 1 'o clock position without any issues printing. The "claw" on the Blacksmith Tactical holster also helps to push the grip towards my body which is great for concealment, especially if you are trying to conceal a full-size.  I've carried my VP9 on the strong-side for a good 6-8 hours and it didn't bother me. While, I'm not saying it was the most comfortable, I really didn't have any issues. I will preface that I have not carried my full-size in my standard appendix position where I've had to sit for that long. I'm also not saying that sitting in my full-size is comfortable but I also don't carry it, if I plan to spend hours sitting. I also know that sitting with my full-size (or any gun) in higher-waist jeans is more comfortable because I'm carrying higher on my torso. Through this process of carrying, what I've come to learn is that it's all based on what you are comfortable with. I don't mind dealing with the added weight around my waist or having to adjust my shirt or pants when I go to sit - things like that might seem like a hassle to some but not to me. I look at it as, these are the things I'm willing to put up with so I can carry this tool to defend myself. I'm not saying that you have to be uncomfortable or that carrying can't be done comfortably. But you have to find ways to carry the gun of your choice that works for you otherwise you won't carry it. And again, what's comfortable to me, might be uncomfortable to someone else.

You need to take the time to work with different clothing and holsters. It might require adjusting the cant or the carrying position of the holster. It might also require that you wear higher-waisted jeans instead of super low-waisted jeans. Your belt requirement might need to be changed. Once you have figured out a position that you like, give a test drive around the house. Wear it while you are at home and go about your normal day and practice your draw to see where you might have issues. If you do this, be sure you are practicing safe gun handling and use an unloaded gun. You'll be shifting positions, drawing, and checking fit which will require a lot of handling of your gun so don't take any chances. Make sure your gun is clear. If you take the time to plan and figure this out ahead of time, it will make getting ready and carrying that much easier; which means you'll be more likely to carry.

:: Concealed Carry Details ::

Gun: Heckler & Koch HKVP9 | Holster: Blacksmith Tactical

: Outfit Details ::

You can find links to shop the exact and/or similar items below.

Jacket: BB Dakota | Shirt: Nordstrom | Jeans: Rag and Bone {similar} | Bag: Chanel {similar} | Shoes: Vince Camuto | Lipstick: Bite Beauty in 'Gazpacho'

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Disclaimer: The information provided here is based on my opinions and for informational use only. I am not an expert in this field and any items/services/products/advice mentioned in these posts should be used at your own discretion, in accordance with your local & state laws, and you should follow applicable manufacturer’s instructions. You can read more about my privacy & disclosure policies here.