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Published Jun 7, 2022 8:04 AM

So you’ve gone out and gotten yourself the most popular handgun in America, the Glock 19. You’ve hit the range a few times to practice your marksmanship and get comfortable with how it handles, and now you feel confident enough in your marksmanship that you feel ready to start carrying it in your daily life. Now you have to find a holster that will work for your needs, and with thousands of options on the market, it is easy to get overwhelmed. For this reason, we have put together this guide on the best Glock 19 holsters.

In this article, we’ll show you some of our favorite picks as well as some of the more niche options. In addition to laying out a variety of Glock 19 holsters, we will go through our process of wading through some good, great, bad, and ugly holsters in order to save you some time and frustration when choosing the right holster for your needs.

Methodology

When it comes to guns, I’m more than a hobbyist. I’ve worked in the gun industry for about nine years and, in that time, I’ve stayed on top of the latest trends and I’ve attended courses by renowned shooting instructors like Dave Maynard, John Correia, and other training schools as well. Additionally, I’ve been concealed-carrying a firearm everyday for the past three years. I have a solid grasp of the fundamentals of marksmanship, and I’ve tried and used countless pieces of gear while carrying a concealed weapon. I know what works best for me and I’ve developed a sense of what works best in general.

While there are thousands of holsters available, we set out to find the best Glock 19 holster. We narrowed the search by looking at recommendations by other online sources and identifying key features that work best overall. We limited the search to designs constructed from hard plastic — in other words, we’ve excluded leather, nylon, and hybrid designs. The holsters we picked were obviously formed to fit a Glock 19 handgun, but also designed to completely cover the trigger guard. We also tried to keep our picks at a manageable price point — most land somewhere between $65 and $135 — and offer different types of carry. 

For this review guide, I tested a total of 10 holsters by wearing them as I would normally. I judged each Glock 19 holster on comfort and concealability. Given that the biggest issue for any concealed carrier is getting your gun to “disappear” behind your clothes, I wore the holsters with a variety of outfits. The most difficult test was concealing the handgun while wearing leggings and a T-shirt. Most of the holsters on this list did OK with that test, but there were a few that exceeded my expectations. 

I did additional testing on outside-the-waistband holsters. Since they’re typically equipped with active retention — a button or switch that locks and releases the gun — I wore them and practiced my draw stroke. I noted anything that hindered my ability to get my gun out quickly. When wearing an OWB holster, I am usually wearing a plate carrier as well, so the test was whether or not I can draw without snagging on the cummerbund.

The PHLster Enigma is truly an enigma. On paper, this “holster” should not be as comfortable as it is, especially for someone my size and with my usual wardrobe. Somehow, though, PHLster managed to pull it off in such a beautiful way. What stood out most about this concealment chassis (it is more of a thing-to-attach-holsters-to) is the fact that it is its own system, so you don’t have to wear a rigid belt to support the weight of the gun or the gun and magazine (if you wear the corresponding Ascent magazine pouch).

I tested the Enigma by sitting at a desk all day, while on multiple three-hour-long drives, walking around during the day doing errands, and even with the Floodlight holster (a universal holster that bases its retention off of the light you have and not the gun). It was more comfortable than most AIWB holsters with a traditional pant/belt outfit. With the standalone piece of gear, I was able to comfortably carry it while wearing high-waisted pants, mid-ride pants, sweatpants, and even yoga pants.

According to PHLster, the Enigma design follows the “Keel Principle,” meaning the holster has extra length in the muzzle to serve like a keel on a boat. The added material helps stabilize the holster during the pushing and pulling it takes to draw the pistol. Because you can trust that Enigma will stay in the same place every time, you can dress with the gun instead of around it.

The PHLster Enigma earned the title of Best Overall because it also earned the titles best appendix holster, best concealed carry holster, and best Glock 19 holster with a light. However, there is one thing to note. The Enigma is something you’ll have to play around with before serious use. It’s not a holster you can just clip to your belt and go.

Product Specs
  • Material:
  • Kydex shell light-bearing holster
  • Carbon fiber faceplate
  • Nylon belt strap
  • Quick-release magnetic buckle (optional low profile tri glide)
  • Nylon leg leash with quick-detach buckle
  • Fits:
  • Any light-bearing holster with hardware holes that align with faceplate
  • Flood light fits most semi-auto handguns including Glock19 with X300, TLR-1 or Modlite
  • PL350
PROS

Pants are optional

Can be used with variety of holsters

Does not compromise on safety or ease of use

Clothing options are not limited to pant/belt outfits

Would be fantastic in an undercover role where certain types of clothing would draw attention

CONS

Costs significantly more than most AIWB holsters

Takes some experimenting to find the right fit

Best Value

The FDO Industries Pyre light-bearing holster for the Glock 19 is a simple holster if you want something that you clip to your belt and go. It gets the job done while checking all the boxes for what makes a good quality CCW holster. It’s designed so you can adjust the retention to fit your light and has a solid belt clip that’ll fit any quality 1.5-inch rigid belt.

One really notable feature of the FDO Pyre is the concealment wing. It’s a nice, effective low-profile wing that hugs the edge of the holster. The wing pushes out against your pants or belt, so your Glock’s grip pushes in toward your body and reduces printing. It’s available for a variety of gun models and light or laser combinations.

Product Specs
  • Kydex shell
  • Non-tuckable belt clip
  • Concealment wing
  • Optional optic cut
  • Multiple color options
PROS

Quality-made holster that conceals well

Accepts weapon light

Factory option for concealment wing

CONS

No audible or tactile retention “click”

Muzzle end of holster not flush with the end of gun/light

Muzzle end not contoured which creates discomfort when sitting for long periods

Honorable Mention

The Incog Shadow Eclipse holster for the Glock 19 does a lot of things very well. From the rounded shape to the adjustable retention, it works really well. What sets it apart from most IWB holsters, though, is that the Kydex mold is wrapped with a fuzzy fabric, which adds an extra layer of comfort between your body and gun.

This Incog holster does have a drawback in that it doesn’t have a concealment wing, which is surprising since so many other holster makers make it a standard feature. If you want to get Incog’s optional concealment wedge, you’ll have to shell out another $20 for the machined aluminum piece.

Product Specs
  • Suede- or cordura-wrapped kydex
  • Accepts most quality weapon lights
  • Basic black and gray color options
  • Fuzz-wrapped when black or gray selected
  • Multicam cordura wrap available
  • Accepts suppressor height sights
PROS

Fuzzy cloth wrapping is extremely comfortable

Corners and edges are contoured very well near muzzle

Very positive retention which is easy to adjust

CONS

Does not come with concealment wing

Retention adjustment hardware does not allow for low-profile wing to be used

Belt clip tends to push outward, printing more

Best Shoulder Holster

The DeSantis New York Undercover is a great shoulder holster for the Glock 19. It securely holds the firearm and spare magazines, and the shoulder straps are nice and wide which will help with comfort throughout the day. DeSantis has been around since the 1970s and has garnered a reputation for making top-tier pieces of equipment such as the New York Undercover.

Russian immigrant-turned gun enthusiast, Frank Valentine, sums up most of the comments seen on OpticsPlanet and Cops Plus. He praised the DeSantis rig, saying, “If you never tried a shoulder holster rig, I definitely, definitely highly recommend you try it because, really, the comfort level is just not like anything else that is out there,” in his review on his Youtube channel Firearms of America.

Product Specs
  • Fits Glock 19 with no attachments
  • Dual magazine pouches opposite of firearm holster
  • Top-grain cowhide leather
  • Fits up to 54-inch chest
  • Pivot points at all four strap junctions
  • Wide shoulder straps for added comfort
PROS

No need for sturdy belt

Great for those who will be sitting for long hours

Shoulder straps are wide and spread out the weight of the gun

CONS

Must be careful when drawing to not flag people

Not as fast as appendix carry

Requires cover garment to be open in the front

The Tier 1 Concealed Axis Elite brings together key features to make a great appendix IWB holster. It’s a great way to save space with an already bulky type of system and reduce the overall profile. Review channels such as Embrace the Recoil explained how much they like the updated design of the Axis Elite with features such as an easily accessible retention screw for the magazine caddy, a raised ridge on the magazine holder to aid in concealment, and gusseting in certain areas which are under more tension.

The inherent criticism of a sidecar holster is that it is bulky. Before the sidecar, if you wanted to carry an extra magazine, you had to keep it in its own IWB sheath. If you have a lot of real estate to carry your gear, it’s just a matter of preference which one you do. But if you have a thin frame, a bulky sidecar carry system is pretty much useless for concealed carry.

Product Specs
  • Kydex holster and magazine caddy
  • Elastic cord holding both pieces together and allows for flex
  • Holster can be used without mag holder
  • Holster cut for optic without needing to select as an option
  • Can be made to accommodate a threaded barrel
PROS

Single unit holding both firearm and magazine

Holster caddy is removable

Comes with concealment wing

CONS

Large and bulky

Won't work for all body types

Not much adjustment

Best for Duty Use

The Safariland 6384RDS ALS is overall the best and one of the most popular options for people who need a rock solid duty use holster for a Glock 19 that has a red dot and light mounted. Regardless of whether you are carrying for a military or law enforcement role, or you are just a responsible armed citizen. It is made to accommodate most common models of pistol-mounted red dots, as well as most common good-quality weapon-mounted lights.

I consulted an instructor by the name of Seth Caster of Civil Training Solutions LLC who has a considerable amount of experience with this type of holster for his input on what he likes about the holster and any potential drawbacks to the design. The hood on the holster is great for keeping debris out and away from the optic, which is especially important when it comes to optics that use an open emitter design such as the Trijicon RMR. It is angled so that when you draw the weapon, it flips forward and out of the way. It is not under any spring tension, so there is the potential for it to be knocked back into place which can impede the weapon’s reholstering until you push it out of the way, either with your hand or the top of your weapon’s slide. Luckily, the hood is the only drawback to the holster and it can be easily removed without the use of tools if it becomes a nuisance.

Product Specs
  • Constructed from high-strength proprietary STX polymer
  • Color options such as black, tan, OD green or Multicam
  • Can be mounted on drop-leg platform, mid-ride, or directly on belt
  • Level 2 retention via ALS device
PROS

Can be mounted on a drop-leg mount, mid-ride, or directly on a belt

Includes active retention

Made out of very sturdy polymer

Optic hood prevents debris from getting onto optic lens

CONS

Expensive

Optic hood can get in the way of re-holstering

Our verdict on the best Glock 19 holsters

The PHLster Enigma is the best overall holster for concealed carry because of its ability to adapt to your style no matter your clothes or the way you want to carry. It is a forward-thinking design that has truly never been done before and has quickly become my go-to EDC setup. If you are on a budget, the FDO Pyre is a solid option. It’s a simple design that retails at an affordable price and hits all of the major requirements when it comes to what I look for in an appendix inside-the-waistband holster.  

What to consider when buying Glock 19 holsters

Before you buy a holster, you should first think about how you want to carry your firearm. Do you want to carry it openly or concealed? The second thing to think about is where you want to carry it. However, while you can find a holster for just about any part of your body, most holsters are designed to wear somewhere on your waist. After you figure out those two things, you should think about comfort, quality, and ease of use, and concealability for concealed-carry holsters. 

Types of Glock 19 holsters

Outside the waistband

An outside-the-waistband holster, or an OWB holster, is typically worn for open carry — like the way cops or security guards do — but it’s not an uncommon mode for concealed carry. The biggest benefit of OWB carry is comfort because you don’t have a bulky hunk of metal and polymer rubbing against your body. The downside is that everyone can see your gun unless it’s hidden behind a cover garment. 

If you do wear an OWB holster, you’ll want to clip it by your hip on your strong side. There are cross-draw holsters, but they’re meant for specific circumstances. Also, when concealing an OWB holster, it is important to consider your cover garment. Heavier layers like jackets or coats are usually the standard, but if you are carrying a smaller gun, you can get away with a light button-up shirt. 

Inside the waistband

An inside-the-waistband holster, or an IWB holster, is only worn for concealed carry. The benefit is that it makes concealing a handgun fairly easy because it’s wedged between your pants and your body, but for that same reason, it’s not as comfortable as OWB carry. 

When you wear an IWB holster, you put it wherever you find it most comfortable. However, the most common areas are strong side at the four- or five-o’clock position, or in the front over your appendix (called appendix carry). Small-of-the-back carry is also a thing, but it’s largely discouraged because if you fall and land on the gun, you could suffer a severe back injury. 

Shoulder holsters

Shoulder holsters come in a variety of styles, the most common being where the gun/holster is under the armpit suspended by shoulder straps looped around both arms. You can find a shoulder holster that positions your gun either parallel or perpendicular to the ground. The latter is best for larger handguns with longer barrels. 

When you wear a shoulder holster, you’ll need to keep a few things in mind. First, you’ll need to wear a cover garment like a jacket or loose-fitting shirt to conceal your firearm. Next, you’ll also need to be able to access your firearm through the front of your garment. And, lastly, you’ll need to consider your surroundings before you draw your handgun. If you draw from a shoulder holster parallel to the ground, you’ll flag any person behind you. 

Since the Glock 19 is larger compared to some options specifically marketed for concealed carry, a shoulder holster can help tremendously with carrying comfortably so long as proper cover garments are worn.

Key features of a Glock 19 holster

Rigidity

The most important feature of any holster is rigidity, or the inability to be bent out of shape. This is especially important in the trigger guard because if the holster flexes when you are putting a loaded gun into it, there is a possibility that the trigger can get snagged on the edge of your holster and result in a negligent discharge. 

Concealability

This is only important if your goal is to carry concealed, otherwise it is a non-issue. Several features factor into the overall concealability of a holster such as the thickness of the material it is made of, how far out the hardware and belt clips stick out from the holster, and the use of a concealment wing or claw which pushes out on the belt/pants and pushes the end of the grip into your body. 

Comfort

Once you have picked out a good quality holster from a reputable manufacturer, next comes finding the right fit for you. This will depend on how and where you want to carry your firearm. I find that when carrying appendix, the biggest issue is hard edges and corners. This is why I try to look for holsters that have rounded edges near the muzzle end and near any corners that will be poking in towards my body. 

Glock 19 holsters pricing 

Depending on the quality and manufacturing process, Glock 19 holsters can range from $20 to $250, and even higher. For a good, quality appendix inside-the-waistband holster, expect to pay at least $60, with most going for anywhere between $80 and $100. For outside-the-waistband duty holsters, expect to pay between $80 and $270.

Tips and tricks

Concealment holsters:

  • Select a holster with a modwing, a sort of lever that pushes out on your belt, which will help push the end of the grip into your body.
  • Wide belt clips make for a more solid foundation and will prevent the gun from rocking side to side.
  • Dark shirts and shirts with patterns hide the outline of your firearm/holster better than light-color clothing.

Duty holsters:

  • Active retention is a must.
  • All holsters which require the trigger finger to be used to defeat the retention are awful and should be avoided at all costs.
  • Mid-ride holsters are the most secure and still allow plenty of clearance to avoid getting snagged on your plate carrier.

FAQs about Glock 19 holsters

You’ve got questions, Task & Purpose has answers.

Q: Is it hard to conceal-carry a Glock 19?

A: As long as a good holster is selected, and it is worn with a proper cover garment, concealing a Glock 19 can be done even by smaller-framed people.

Q:Can you ankle-carry a Glock 19?

A: You can, but you might have to look in the 1970s-era section of the thrift store for some pants that are flared wide enough.

Q: Do Navy SEALs use Glock 19s?

A: Navy SEALs do, in fact, carry the Glock 19, as well as MARSOC and other SOF groups.

Q: Will the Glock 17 fit a Glock 19 holster?

A: It depends, but generally speaking, no.

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