How to Appendix Carry | The Ultimate Guide

What’s the big deal with appendix carry? Appendix carry has been around for quite some time, but it is becoming more and more popular as of late.  I had not heard the term appendix carry until a few years ago. So I started to look into what it means and how to do it.

To appendix carry, place your holster and gun in the front of the waistband. The most common position is half way between the distance from the hip bone and waistband button.

What is Appendix Carry?

Appendix carry is where you place a holster and gun in the front of the waistband. Rather then carrying a gun on the side or in the back. The usual placement of the gun and holster when appendix carrying is centered between the front pants pocket and zipper, close to the appendix.  

In the 19th century this has been a very popular style of carrying, most often used to conceal small handguns in the waistband. In the old days appendix carrying was done without a conceal carry holster.

As technology has advanced, people most often use a good holster with the gun. In the 19th century gun laws were much stricter and people most often had laws restricting them the carry. Since then, laws have become more lenient allowing concealed carry in public areas.

The appendix carry has pros and cons to carrying this style. Let’s talk about a few pros and cons that are worth keeping in mind.  

What Are The Benefits of Appendix Carry?

  1. Ease of access
  2. Much easier to conceal
  3. Tactical advantage

Ease of Access

Yes, that’s right ease of access. For people that are advanced in drawing weapons maybe holstering a weapon from behind or the side is easier. But for the average Joe the appendix carry provides ease of access.

With the location being in the front it’s easy to access when needed. Whether you are sitting or standing the weapon can be accessed with just a reach of the hand. Ensure the safety or a trigger guard is on to avoid a misfire.  

Much Easier To Conceal

A traditional holster takes more time to get it adjusted having to push back and forth until it is in place. With appendix carry you can just apply the holster to the waistband, tighten your belt, insert the gun and go. 

Being in the front of the waistband T-shirts or coats naturally drape over the front of the waist band. No need to find added measures to cover your weapons in the appendix area.  

Tactical Advantage Of Appendix Carry

When conceal carrying and a weapon needs to be drawn, 9 out of 10 times it requires urgency and quickness. Only one shooter in a few decades of Rogers Shooting School has shot a perfect score using a concealed handgun on the course’s extremely challenging test.

That shooter drew from an appendix holster. That’s because the appendix carry position makes it easier to draw fast.

How To Appendix Carry Comfortably?

It is important to keep a few things in mind when conceal carrying appendix style. Keep in mind your pant size, holster and gun size.  

Whether your pants are too small or baggy, you can make appendix carrying work for you. Heck, I conceal carry with tight pants and it works out great.

But remember that tighter pants may mean you feel the gun more. It’s similar to picking the right EDC wallet for pants, it can’t be too big for your pants. Wearing pants that are a little bigger will provide more room and less chafing against you.  

Using the right holster is everything. Make sure to read the reviews before moving forward with the right holster for you. Look through negative and positive reviews to see what people liked or didn’t like about the holster. 

If you see a recurring theme of something people don’t like about it and you can’t see yourself putting up with it, don’t get the holster.  

Finally gun size. Keep in mind the larger the gun, the more you will feel it. Try to use a weapon that’s not too large but not a pea shooter. 

This again a matter of preference. Some people get easily bothered by feeling the gun when appendix carrying.  

Cons to appendix carrying

Let’s first talk about the cat in the bag. Appendix carrying often requires the weapon to be pointed directly at the family jewels. 

This fact alone can deter people from wanting to appendix conceal carry. The thought of a misfire in the appendix position is a painful thought. But remember this is simply a fear. 

With proper safety precautions and care, this is simply a fear, not something that will actually happen. Another thing to think about is that conceal carrying in the waistband requires a little extra room versus carrying outside the waistband.

If you are thinking you will be appendix carrying. Remember the front of the waistband can sometimes cause discomfort. Try out having the holster or your weapon in the front before moving forward, preferably your strong side. Make sure the safety or a trigger guard is installed first.  

How to choose Appendix Carry Holster?

First things first, choosing the right conceal carry appendix holster can make or break your experience. Like any concealed carry position, choosing the right holster will help you feel comfortable or uncomfortable. A Lot of people use IWB holsters as they provide quick access and can be covered by a garment.

What To Look For In An Appendix Holster?

Believe it or not looking for an appendix holster is very similar to looking for any other holster. Look for these common traits to find the right appendix holster for you.  In addition keep in mind the holster maker. Be sure to pick a holster with great reviews or a company with a good reputation.


Comfort is very important, especially taking into account that this tends to be a less comfortable way to carry. Don’t let that deter you as uncomfortable positions for some are often comfortable for others.


Yes, that’s right if the holster doesn’t fit and wont stay in place, it’s not a holster you want. Ensure the holster fits well in place and doesn’t slide up or down.

The last thing you would want is your gun falling down your leg pants when your in public. The pistol should fit the appendix holster from the factory. The holster should not have to be jimmy rigged or adjusted in order to fit.

Trigger Guard

Trigger guard is of utmost importance when appendix carrying. Naturally in this position or what you might call ride height the trigger can misfire. The shirt can easily snag on the trigger causing a misfire. Make sure to choose a trigger guard to prevent this from happening.  

Choosing the Best Gun For Appendix Carry

Generally if weapons are in the appendix position or clock position, smaller weapons work best. Choose a weapon with a shorter barrel length. In addition pay attention to the back profile of the weapon. Some firearms have a sharp or pointy back profile which can dig into you when appendix carrying. Full size firearms tend to be uncomfortable in this position.

Will Appendix Carry Work For Me?

That’s a great question! This is something you will need to find out for yourself. Everybody is different. Sometimes this is a great position for some, for others they can’t stand it. 

But if you try a new style to carry and you love it, great! For people not wanting to conceal carry on their body, concealed carry backpack are a great option.

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