Choosing a holster is not an easy decision; you will need to consider various factors to make the right purchase. Apart from fitting your body, your holster should also fit your lifestyle.

Before buying a holster, keep in mind the functions it performs. A good holster helps in properly securing your handgun, and it should also be appropriately angled. That helps in giving a sharp presentation from concealment. It’s crucial to balance the speed and retention properly.

Kydex and leather are the two most common holster materials. Each of them has its own sets of advantages and disadvantages, reviewing which you will be able to make the right decision depending on your preferences.

Let’s review each material separately.


Kydex IWB Holsters are thermoplastic resins that are sweat, oil, and solvent resistant. But any foreign material present in the holster might scratch the handgun and affect its perfect finish. However, if your gun is coated with Glock or melonite, it will not get scratched. One of the best parts of Kydex is that it offers an excellent finish and has a very sharp draw. Maintaining it is also very easy; only soap and water will do the task.

Highlights of the material are –

  • Kydex is tough but keeps the holster properly positioned on the draw, and it’s easy to re-holster.
  • It is quite affordable and available in various designs.
  • Kydex is easy to screw on a magazine pouch, unlike leather holsters


Made of animal skin, tanned and dyed, the leather holsters can give a molded fit to the handguns. It is a supple material that needs tanning and waxing to acquire that stiffness. There are different types of exotic leathers, bringing the owners a certain type of pride for possessing them. Also, talking about comfort, leather has more of that.

Highlights of the material are –

  • It has a soft and supportive holster base, but it can be problematic for people with severe back pain.
  • The leather holster lies flat to the body

You can also find a hybrid type, which consists of both materials. It’s made to get the best of both worlds. The hybrid of Kydex and leather holster delivers an increased comfort level. It also comes with a very sharp draw and a wide footprint. These holsters are available in compact designs.

So, you can see that each material has its goods and bad. Knowing the tradeoffs and your preferences will help you to make the right decision. You might also want different types of holsters for a single handgun.

In general, the smaller guns go best with the Kydex holster. And for the large handguns, the leather ones seem to be more comfortable. But as you know, tanned leather is quite stiff, so you might not always get this benefit. Now that you know about the holster materials, it is up to you to make the right choice, depending on your preferences.

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