One of the biggest challenges with concealed carry is how to carry when you’re not wearing a belt. We can’t always wear the ideal pants and belt setup we’d like to make concealed carry easy. Often CCW holders need an alternative for the morning run or the gym workout or for women who don’t want to completely redo their wardrobe to carry a gun.
Many years ago, a viable solution hit the market: the clipless holster. The premise behind the clipless holster is that it is held in place by tension, typically the natural friction created by wedging it in between the waistband and body. The outside of these holsters is somewhat tacky but not gooey, often made from polypropylene or similar material with a slight texturing on the outside that is smooth to the touch but grabs when friction is applied.
Arkansas-based Clinger Holsters sent me their version, called the Comfort Cling, to try with my EDC Smith & Wesson Shield 9 mm. This was not my first encounter with clipless holsters, as my CCW instructor gave me a competitor’s version when I got my carry permit. So, this was less about deciding if I liked the concept and more about what differentiates one brand from another.
Diehard traditionalists will insist the clipless holster isn’t a “real holster” because it lacks hardware. But the Comfort Cling carries one big advantage over traditional IWB holsters: versatility. It can be carried appendix, strongside hip or pocket. With no hardware to get in the way, the Comfort Cling may be the perfect pocket holster. Its grippy skin clings to the inside of the pocket so when you have to draw, the holster stays tucked inside while the gun slides easily out.
As for IWB carry, positioning the holster inside the waistband is easy. Simply place it in between your waistband and skin or T-shirt and you’re done. The Comfort Cling’s grippy texture does the rest, replacing the need for clips or loops.
Because there are no clips, adjusting the cant is as simple as repositioning the holster by as little or as much as you want. Like the 15 degree “FBI” cant? Want it straight up and down? Just insert it the way you want. Change your mind? Just re-adjust and you’re on your way.
The Comfort Cling gets its first name from the thick, soft material that wraps around the gun and presses comfortably against your body. Below the surface is what Clinger refers to as a “gel-like cushion," which makes it a comfortable holster to carry. In fact, depending on the size and weight of your carry gun, you might not even really feel it in your waistband. The fit and finish on the holster is excellent, with reinforced stitching that appears durable.
Since the Comfort Cling doesn’t rely on Kydex, it’s not restricted to particular guns. The holster comes in two sizes—compact and full size—to accommodate pretty much any gun currently on the market. The same holster that works with my Shield also works with a Springfield Armory XD-S, Walther PPS, and other compact frames. Even if you have an odd gun that most holster manufacturers don’t service, the Comfort Cling will work just fine.
Now for the drawbacks. There are basically two. The first one is that while the beltless carry concept is appealing, both the Comfort Cling and its competitors don’t really work for gym shorts and sweatpants. Even Clinger admits on its packaging insert “The Comfort Cling can be worn without a belt but will hold better with a belt.” I tried it in gym shorts and kept waiting for it to fall down my leg. It might work better in yoga pants, for you ladies out there.
The second drawback rears its ugly head when it comes to reholstering. Putting the gun back means pulling out the holster with your support hand (which is on the opposite side of your body if you carry strongside hip), sticking the gun back in, and then replacing everything back inside the waistband. This may not be a big deal when practicing, but try doing this under the stress of a real-world shootout when you need to put your gun away before the police arrive so they won’t think you’re the bad guy.
Those two issues aside, this is a great USA-made holster for most concealed carry applications. And at $19.99, you can afford to get a second one for your bigger conceal gun, too.