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There are a lot of arguments against off-body carry for women. So-called “handbag carry” challenges the gun owner to keep strict control of her handbag/firearm at all times. To never, ever let the bag/gun out of her sight. Then there’s the challenge of drawing the gun during an adrenaline dump, when fingers turn to flippers and nothing goes exactly as planned. “But I wear skirts and tight tops,” well-armed women complain. “How else can I carry?” Enter the DeSantis Thigh Hide . . .

DeSantis Thigh -Hide holster

I’ve had little luck with thigh rigs; they have a tendency to slide down my leg. Even holsters with sticky strips (that meld to your leg and pull on the skin) and holsters that depend on garter belts begin to sink earthwards after a few minutes of walking around. “There’s no way in hell this thing is going to work,” I thought, opening the package. I grabbed my Ruger LCP .380 and gave it a go.

Sara T. DeSantis thigh review review

The Thigh Hide holster is fashioned from some sort of soft, thicker-than-average (but still thin) memory foam stretchy material, with Velcro clasps. It comes with two clip-on straps to attach to a belt or a garter — if you have one. (I don’t have a garter belt, so I removed the straps.) After putting on the holster without the garter belt attachments, I was ready for the rig to fall off, gun and all.

To avoid public humiliation and anti-gun freak outs, I inserted the LCP, Velcroed the holster’s straps into place and did some housework. After almost an hour, not only had I damn near forgotten I had it on, it was still perfectly in place. I had no idea that the Thigh Hide would stay on this well. It didn’t slip. It wasn’t hot. Nothing dug into my leg making me want to rip it off.

That said, the DeSantis Thigh-Hide isn’t the world’s smallest holster; users can’t completely hide their gun under a tight skirt. But worn under pretty much anything other than a pencil skirt, the Thigh Hide does the trick.

I put the holster up as high as I could; my gun was best hidden in that position. (A wearer can adjust the rig to position the holster on the outside of the leg.) To test comfort while sitting, I went for an hour drive in the Jeep. Off-road, I knew the gun was there, but it wasn’t annoying. On pavement, comfort was a non-issue.

As a final test, I wore the Thigh Hide while grocery shopping, chasing two kids. I spent 45 minutes walking through the store, reaching up for top shelf items, crouching down to get things lower on the shelves and bending to grab my son as he kept attempting to get me to buy him candy. The Thigh-Hide worked perfectly. The holster didn’t move.

Sara T. DeSantis thigh hide review

The Thigh-Hide holds the gun in place by the stretchy material, with a removable Velcro strip providing extra retention. It isn’t hard to unfasten. It can be done one-handed — a huge win for a self-defense scenario. Draw is simple and easy. Although re-holstering isn’t as easy as a hip-mounted Kydex rig (what is?), it can be done much more quickly than I expected without much extra exertion.

Color me impressed. I’m not even kidding. I’d set the thigh holster bar really low, but DeSantis raised it sky high. It’s a solid win for women.

Ratings (out of five stars):

QUALITY  * * * * *
The holster is well built and constructed. I didn’t find a loose thread or have any trouble at all with the Velcro coming up anywhere.  I pulled on it quite a bit and nothing came loose, no threads broke, and it still works great.

PRICE * * * *
At $59.99, this is an excellent buy. That’s a fair price, especially as a separate garter isn’t necessary.

CONCEALMENT * * * *
One star down because it really only works with a looser skirt or dress. But it isn’t like anyone would think a pencil skirt would completely hide the gun. And it will work on an even moderately tight skirt, just not one that’s melded to the legs.

COMFORT * * * * *
You really can’t beat the comfort of this holster. Especially since it works without a garter, much to my surprise, and it doesn’t have those awful anti-slip strips.

OVERALL * * * * *
I usually refrain from going all out and giving five stars if I haven’t tested anything similar. I like to leave room, but this one earned it. The Thigh Hide doesn’t slip, it’s comfortable, and it hides the gun while keeping it easy to draw. If you carry while in a dress or skirt, this is by far a better option than tossing the gun in your purse.

 

24 Responses to Gear Review: DeSantis Women’s Thigh Hide Holster

    • I’m wearing my Utilikilt right now. This sounds really neat.

      Heinlein’s character, Lazarus Long, carried his “blaster” concealed beneath his kilt. I have thought of this ever since i started wearing kilts.

      Some question:

      Neoprene?

      What about hot environments and sweat?

      What’s the biggest circumference for a thigh?

      Chaffing?

  1. Nice review Sara. TTaG’s female readers will appreciate it. And TTaG’s male reads have something to share with their moms, wives, and daughters.

    • Indeed. Glad to see that there is enough demand for female-specific carry gear that the market responds. Keep tooling up, ladies!

  2. I like the technical jargon – “memory foam stretchy material” – Knew exactly what you meant.

    Nice, well-written review

  3. I can’t recall Ms. Tipton giving a negative review. Granted, currently I’m too lazy to search. Either way, TTAG to me is starting to resemble other sites that promote goods through reviews. Maybe it’s the daily stupid “pocket dump” feature. How many freaking ugly guns do you people think we want to see? I put an ugly gun in my pocket/holster every day, it ain’t worth a pic. I used to come here daily, not so much anymore. How bout it Sara, let’s see a “this holster sucks” review. My wife could suggest several that she’s tried.

    • Robin,

      First of all, I have seen The Truth about Guns give poor reviews where poor reviews are due. Second of all, Sara states very early in her article:

      I’ve had little luck with thigh rigs; they have a tendency to slide down my leg. Even holsters with sticky strips (that meld to your leg and pull on the skin) and holsters that depend on garter belts begin to sink earthwards after a few minutes of walking around.

      That sounds pretty critical to me.

  4. Excellent review. Now I have something that I can actually recommend to my lady students!

    Two thumbs up for Sarah: Where can I find a woman like that????

    Charlie

  5. Just a suggestion. My wife sometimes wears a thigh holster, and when she does she wears it towards the inside of her thigh on her weak side leg. So she sort of cross draws it. This allows her to not print in the front, and as she would be clearing her skirt with her left hand it gives her a more natural draw. YMMV.

  6. So a question to others and any other female gun owners is this. I trained to expect to use muscle memory, in other words always drawing from the same place. Doesn’t this go against the grain of that teaching? If any other women are out there, my question is this. Do you use more than 1 holster and if you do, do you practice with more than one holster as well? Thanks!

    • I carry daily at 1:00 or 3:00 position and, yes, I regularly practice drawing with those holsters/guns. Thigh holsters were not made for me as I never wear dresses or skirts and have not been blessed with skinny thighs.

    • As the saying goes, don’ t let perfection be the enemy of good enough.

      To wit: the first rule is “Have a Gun.”

      In the ideal world, yes, we’d carry “exactly” the same and our muscle memory would be perfect and we’d shoot straight, etc. Or, in this ideal world, we would not NEED to draw and/or fire a weapon.

      Then there’s the real world.

      It is arguably better to carry consistently. It is demonstrably better to be armed rather than not.

      If it’s a choice between “Today, I can’t carry the way I do the other 6 days per week so I won’t carry” and “I’ll can’t carry my normal way so, less than ideally, I’ll carry this other way” the latter is by far the more “survival” oriented mindset.

      Having the weapon when you need it so far eclipses all other considerations that I continue to be amazed there are so many arguments on what amounts, by comparison, to minutia.

    • I’ve tried lots of holsters over the years… have the box full of them to prove it. 🙂 I’ve tried a number of positions too, and finally settled on one for OC and one for CC.

      The OC rig is detailed here with photos: http://www.thepriceofliberty.org/?p=8686
      I’ve carried this way for many years now.

      My CC rig is a fanny pack with a built in holster. It rides on the left at the same place the OC holster rests on the right side. And yes, I practice frequently with both. 🙂

      Personally, I have no use for such a thigh holster. I wonder how long that “stretchy material” will hold up with daily use. $60. for a replacement every few months would be a bit steep.

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