Buyers Guide: 5 Types of Holsters for Glock 43

Need a new holster for your Glock 43? The only thing more abundant than Glock pistols are the accessories and holsters for Glock pistols. From leather to plastic and belt to ankle carry, the holster options are endless. Unfortunately, endless is what makes this process hard for many. If you aren’t sure what type of holster you want, we will talk about 5 different types of holsters you can buy for the Glock 43. I’ll offer a few suggestions for brands in each category as well.

While there are lots of good holsters out there, pay attention to retention and quality on the holster you select. A bad holster that doesn’t keep your gun secure only leads to bad things. Look for some type of retention when possible and a material that will hold up over time with the weight of your gun pulling on it. For example, a nylon IWB (inside the waistband) holster may work just fine. But a nylon OWB (outside the waistband) holster is flimsy and, in my opinion, not worth using. Here are some holster types to consider:

1.     IWB Kydex Holsters

Probably the most common type of holster for the Glock 43 is the Kydex IWB holster. Best for CCW, these holsters go on the inside of your pants. A clip goes on the outside of your jeans and hooks on the bottom of your belt to hold it in place. This keeps the gun as close to your body as you can get it. Some people wear an undershirt, so the holster doesn’t rub on their waist. I have a few leather holsters that bother my skin, but the plastic ones don’t. This means I can wear a gun under my t-shirt in the summer and keep it concealed.

IWB holster for Glock 43.
IWB holster for Glock 43. [Photo: Jason Mosher]
It’s easy to find a Kydex holster for just about any model of handgun. Desantis, Safariland, CYA, Blackhawk, and others make some great IWB holsters. Most IWB holsters are open-top style with a retention screw. This causes the gun to “click” in place when holstered. If the gun goes in too easy, just tighten the screw to increase the tension. Because these types of holsters are molded for the gun, I wouldn’t recommend using a gun other than what the manufacturer specifies.

If you want IWB, but don’t care for Kydex holsters, you can also find some great IWB leather holsters from Desantis, Galco, Gould & Goodrich, and others. Leather holsters are comfortable, but re-holstering is more difficult on some of them. This is because the leather smashes when you holster it, making it hard to get the gun back in the holster. It doesn’t mean they are bad holsters, just keep that in mind.

2.     Plastic OWB Paddle Holsters for Glock 43

If you want an outside the waist holster that is easy to put on and take off, these are a great choice. A paddle holster has a slightly curved piece of plastic that tucks on the inside of your pants with the holster going on the outside. The part of the holster that goes over your pants has a hook that clips over your belt to keep it from pulling off when you draw the gun. Some paddle holsters have a leather holster attached to them with a thumb break while others are all plastic.

Glock 43 in a polymer paddle holster
Glock 43 in a polymer paddle holster. [Photo: Jason Mosher]
One of my favorite paddle holsters is the Blackhawk Serpa CQC holster for the Glock 43. It has a self-locking retention that locks on its own when you holster the gun. To release the gun, push a button located on the side of the holster with your index finger. For leather paddle holsters, 1791 makes several options that fit compact guns like the Glock 43. Galco’s Speedmaster 2.0 for Glock 43 is another great choice for this style.

3.     Leather Pancake Holster

Pancake holsters are what I use if I want a leather holster secured to my belt. A pancake holster has leather that sticks out on each side of the holster with slots cut out for the belt. This is the most secure way of attaching a holster to your dress/fashion belt. For larger guns, a duty holster is the best way of attaching to a combat belt. However, we’re talking about a G43 today, not duty size weapons.

Glock 43 leather pancake holster.
Glock 43 leather pancake holster. [Photo: Jason Mosher]
The Desantis Gunhide Thumb Break Mini Slide holster is a great leather pancake holster that sells for about $55. 1791’s model is the Gunleather Glock 43, which is an open top leather pancake holster. For carrying concealed, this option makes it easy and fast to draw. Just remember to keep leather holsters oiled to keep them in good shape. You may also need to mold the holster when you first use it. This can be done by wiping some denatured alcohol on the inside and then placing your plastic-wrapped gun in it overnight.

4.     Shoulder Holsters for Glock 43

Shoulder holsters are typically used for larger handguns or revolvers. But they can be great for carrying smaller concealed weapons too. If the weather is right for a second shirt or jacket, a shoulder holster can be easier to access than an IWB holster. Sometimes I carry a shoulder holster because I have too many layers of clothes to quickly access an IWB holster. Shoulder holsters for Glock 43s are not abundant, but they can be found.

Galco Miami Classic II shoulder holster.
Galco Miami Classic II shoulder holster is available for Glock 43.

Galco makes two different models for a Glock 43, the Classic Light 2.0 and the Miami Classic II. Both are great holsters, and they also help you conceal two extra mags. The mags are held under the right arm and help balance the gun. If you want more options, Falco has several options through Craft holsters. Just like the belt holsters, these will need to be fitted before your first use. Adjust the straps so the gun rides a few inches under your arm pit, or until it’s comfortable to grab with your strong hand.

5.     Ankle Holsters

The Glock 43 is a good size gun for those who want to carry on the ankle. Sometimes ankle carry is the only choice someone has because of the way they dress. I use ankle holsters from time to time, but they can be finicky. To make it comfortable, you need the right pair of shoes. A pair that is too short will cause the gun to ride on your ankle bone which is not comfortable at all. If your shoes/boots are too tall, the gun rides too high on your leg. I prefer a mid-height pair of boots, so the holster rides just a few inches above my ankle bone. I am right-handed so I place my ankle holster on the inside of my left leg. Others prefer outside of their right leg.

Glock 43 leather ankle holster.
Glock 43 leather ankle holster. [Photo: Jason Mosher]
The holsters I like the most for ankle carry with a Glock 43 are the Desantis Gunhide Diehard holster and the Galco Ankle Glove holster. The Desantis runs about $70 and the Galco $115, so they are not cheap. If you really want a cheaper version, the Tagua LANK-355 is a decent holster in the $50 range. It will fit the Glock 43 and a few other guns in that size range. All three of these holsters have padding on the inside to help make it comfortable for your ankle.

Which holster is best for you?

If you carry a Glock 43 regularly, you may end up wanting more than one type of holster. I know some guys that always carry with an IWB holster and others who use multiple holsters throughout the year. I use just about all of them depending on how I’m dressed and the weather. There’s nothing wrong with using different types of holsters, just make sure you train with them.

Sheriff Jason Mosher is a law enforcement generalist instructor as well as a firearms and tactical weapons trainer. Jason graduated from the FBI-LEEDA (Law Enforcement Executive Development Association) and serves as a Sheriff for his day job. When he’s not working, he’s on the range, eating steak, or watching Yellowstone.

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