For some odd reason, I seem to have become the defacto tester of Kydex IWB Appendix Carry holsters here at TTAG. A position I relish greatly. There’s a lot of ways to schlep a handgun around, but in the Texas summer, not much is better than appendix carry. There’s no need for anything more than a t shirt and a smile to successfully conceal a nearly full sized handgun. But picking a worthy holster is hard. Leather is best in my opinion, but in the Texas heat, leather gets awful funky, awful fast. For summer wear, you just can’t beat Kydex. And I think that Critical Response Tactical’s LoPro is a pretty solid rig for summer carry . . .
The LoPro consists of a single piece of Kydex folded clamshell style, secured with two screws, and mated to a springy clip. The only adjustability in the system is for retention of your heater via the two screws that hold the clamshell together. They can be loosened enough to have the gun drop free and tightened enough so that the gun can’t go anywhere. The clip design is very secure, and while not adjustable for ride height or tension, it does a good job of positioning the gun in a concealable, yet still reachable fashion. Like most appendix holsters, the draw is very fast and smooth coming out of the LoPro.
Because the LoPro is basically a zero cant IWB holster, it can also be moved around the body as necessary depending on your needs. This is especially nice on a long road trip as you can move the holster/gun combo from the front to the side as necessary. The clip portion seems to be optimized for a standard 1.5″ belt, and rides on top of the belt versus the pant material meaning you can wear a light pair of chinos or bermuda shorts with a sturdy belt while using the LoPro.
In the above photo, you can see the LoPro compared to a NorCal Kydex AIWB that I reviewed a few months ago. A few things worth noting between the two are that the Kydex body is almost identical between the two, but the clip position puts the clip over the slide vs. the trigger guard. In my very subjective opinion, I feel this balances the pistol a bit better so the gun remains vertical versus rocking back and forth on the belt. This also creates a bit of a bind with the positioning of my GLOCK 19.
Looking straight down, you can see that since the clip is positioned so much further “left”, it starts to interfere with the buckle of a belt sooner than the clip on the NorCal holster. For most of my pants, this isn’t a deal breaker, but if you’re a slimmer guy, and your belt loops and belt buckle make for a lack of real estate, this holster might present some issues. The opportunity that this creates is the ability to carry at the eleven o’clock position for more of a crossdraw style carry.
This position keeps the gun very flat to the body and would honestly allow a full sized handgun with a long grip to be carried effectively. It is a little awkward at first, but much like appendix carry in general, it gets comfortable fairly quickly.
Lastly, the LoPro features one of my favorite IWB holster features, a full sweatguard. I don’t necessarily worry about Gaston’s GLOCK rusting up from my belly sweat, but the more protection the better.
Specifications: Critical Response Tactical LoPro AIWB Holster
- Draw: Right or Left
- Sweat Guard: Yes/No
- Clip Cant: 0, 10, 15 degree
- Belt Loop Size: 1.5″
- Material: .080 Kydex
- Retention: Adjustable
- Models Available: GLOCK 17/22/31/19/23/32/26/27/33/36/30s/42
- OD Green
- Blood Red
- Coyote Tan
- Price: $45 ($7 extra for colors other than Black)
Ratings (out of five stars):
Fit, Finish, Quality * * * * *
This is a very well made holster that showcases excellent quality especially for the $45 price tag. All the edges are very smooth, the hardware is sturdy, and I feel confident this holster will last for years to come.
Comfort * * * *
This is just as comfortable as any other Kydex AIWB holster I’ve tested. There’s no getting around being slightly uncomfortable having a chunk of metal reinforced plastic inside your pantaloons. The clip position means that you’re limited a touch in where you can position the gun on your strong side, but it does allow a weak side crossdraw position that I’ve never been able to use with other holsters.
Overall * * * * *
In a world filled with Kydex Appendix Carry holsters, it is hard to differentiate. I don’t think CRT is doing anything life changing, but they do sell a quality holster at a great price, that does an excellent job of holding your GLOCK at the ready.