by Janna Reeves
Concealed carry . I’ve been doing it for about 3 years, ever since I became a gun owner and got my permit. During that time, I’ve managed to accumulate a veritable graveyard of holsters; a tangled mass of belly bands, bra holsters, and every latest, greatest gadget-gizmo holster you can imagine! There have been a precious few that work well for me to concealed carry on a daily basis and those are all well worn and greatly appreciated! Regardless of all my holster misadventures, I still get excited when I discover a new product that looks like it may work well for women’s concealed carry. The Hiphugger holster by Can Can Concealment is the most recent product that I placed my cautiously optimistic hope in!
I discovered their website (www.cancanconcealment.com ) through some Facebook browsing and was immediately drawn to the cute but not frilly, functional look of their products. The models on the website were wearing the holsters with a variety of normal looking clothing that you’d find in most women’s closet, as opposed to the IDPA type concealment vest I’d need to conceal many of the other holsters I’ve tried! I browsed through their offerings, which include thigh and corset holsters, as well as variations on the Hiphugger, and decided the Hiphugger was the one for me. It’s a wide band of elastic, with hook and eye closures and it includes 4 flat pouches to accommodate up to 4 guns and up to 3 magazines. I’m not sure if anyone carries more than one gun in their waistband but the 4 pockets also mean you can kidney (back) or appendix (front) carry, and it suits righties and lefties. It is available in black or tan, with a variety of pretty accent colors like royal blue, emerald, and purple. I am pretty basic with my holsters so I went with tan on tan for maximum concealability!
After placing my order, the holster showed up in the mail 2 days later in a pretty pink bubble mailer. Fast service. I like that cause I’m impatient! On the website, the Hiphugger looked dreadfully similar in style to the traditional belly band holsters. I say dreadfully because I’ve tried multiple brands of belly bands and they’ve all failed miserably. The elastic on them is very stiff and does not, in any way, conform to the natural curves of a female’s body. It turns out the Hiphugger is similar in concept only to the belly band, but is different in most functional ways. The material on Can Can’s holster is a much softer elastic that conforms to the body much better and more comfortably and doesn’t stick out or cause bulges. The 3 rows of hook and eye closures allow a tighter fit in some places to help the band conform to your curves. The inside has a silicone material that helps keep the band from slipping. Admittedly, I’ve only had this holster during cold winter months so I do not know how it will behave in the summer when some sweat is involved!
Once the Hiphugger was in place, I tried several of my carry guns in it, including my S&W Bodyguard .380, Glock 42, M&P Shield, and Glock 26. They all fit perfectly and were very secure, even during my jumping, running, and cartwheel test. (Note: I do not endorse cartwheel testing your holsters, it’s just something I do and always with an unloaded gun!). Can Can’s website mentions that “earth magnets” help to keep the gun securely in place and while I’m not really sure what that is, the gun definitely stayed in place! I typically carry in the appendix position and I’m right handed so I place the gun in the right front pocket of the band. With the Glock 42 and the Shield, I tried on a variety of different outfits and determined the Hiphugger very effectively conceals underneath nearly everything in my wardrobe, including jeans and a t-shirt. The most exciting thing for me is that I can wear it with sweatpants and workout/yoga pants for my lazy days when jeans just don’t make the cut! I can’t do that with any of my traditional clip on holsters since they require a stiffer waistband and/or a belt. This has another huge advantage: If you’ve carried a gun on body for any length of time, you’ve encountered the public restroom concealed carry dance in which you try to figure out where to safely stash your gun when you’re in the bathroom stall. It seems like a silly thing but it really is an important consideration and with the Hiphugger, I was able to leave my gun and holster exactly where I always carry it, since it stays up independent of a waistband.
After wearing the Hiphugger for a few days, I liked it even more than when I first tried it on. It becomes very comfortable with a little wear and I assume it will only get better as it breaks in more. It never slipped when I sat down, bent over, or got in and out of the car. Fit seems to be very important. If the band were too big, I’d assume it wouldn’t stay put as well. Actually, when I first ordered, I unfortunately didn’t follow the directions on the website and ended up ordering the wrong size. The customer service was absolutely fantastic and the exchange process was easy and fast, even though it was my own mistake. I do love a company who takes care of their customers and does so on a personal level, such as the owner of Can Can Concealment personally emailing me about my issue! As fantastic as the customer service experience was, I recommend you follow the measurement instructions more carefully than I did.
Last but not least, one of the most important consideration of any holster for me, is how easily I’m able to access and draw my gun. With the Hiphugger, you’re able to place the band in the most comfortable position for you, either higher or lower on your hips. I positioned it so my gun’s grip was exposed over my waistband so I could get my hand on it easily. The trigger is protected inside the pocket on the band but it is just covered by the soft elastic so it’s important to (always!) practice good trigger finger discipline when drawing. When practicing drawing from concealment, I found the gun to be very easy to access, grip, and draw. The pockets have small tabs on the front so reholstering is very simple as your support hand can use the tab to pull the pocket open. They call this their “Heads-Up Reholstering” because you can reholster without looking down, effectively keeping your eyes on target. I found this to work just as they claim it does.
In summary, the Hiphugger has won this holster skeptic over. The fit, comfort, concealability, and retention are all top notch. The customer service is great. And they thought of everything and even managed to make the band pretty without being over the top frilly. At $79.00 it’s not the cheapest holster you’ll find on the market, but in my opinion, it’s a very worthy investment. This has become my go-to for concealed carry and it’s definitely one item that won’t be joining my holster graveyard.
Janna began shooting about 4 years ago when she bought her first pistol for concealed carry. In 2014, she started competing in 3 gun and now shoots professionally, representing companies like Benelli, Brownells,5.11, and Freedom Munitions. In addition to competing, Janna works in the firearms industry and is a certified instructor who enjoys teaching women to shoot for competition and self defense.