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I haven't started carrying my P320 (9mm Carry) yet, but I'm thinking about it. I like the idea of a belly band since I don't wear belts, but can't figure out how the trigger is protected in that type of set up. Sorry if this is a stupid question....but I don't know who else to ask, and I'd rather not shoot myself accidentally :eek:

Also, there seems to be a lot of strong opinions around the web on purse carry. I feel like this might be an option too, but only with a cross body bag.

Any other carry options for ladies that I'm not thinking about?

Thanks!!
 

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Welcome to the site! It is not at all a stupid question! My wife carries mainly in a purse or bag. The trick there is to have a system in place to get to the gun quickly. You don't want it just jostling around in the bag, so you may want to invest in one designed specifically for carrying a gun. There are tons of options for purses and packs.

Also, wrt a belly band, there are options available that do protect the trigger, but that is a very legitimate concern! If you don't wear a belt this may be a good options for you, but you may also want to consider changing how you dress to better accommodate carrying a gun as well. As the old saying goes, dress to the gun. My wife is 5'3 115lbs, and she likes to wear the cute body hugging clothes (and I like he to), which is why she normally carries in a bag of some type, but she just recently started getting used to carrying her Shield at the appendix. This is a more comfortable way to carry b/c it does not force the gun to bear against the hip when wearing tighter fitting clothes, and it is easy to conceal even with the cute shirts.

It is all about what you like, but I recommend trying a few different ways to see what works best. You may find that a number of ways works for the given situation. Most of us carry according to what we're doing. I carry mainly appendix with an untucked shirt, but if I'm wearing a suit or tucking my shirt in, I will wear on my hip with my shirt tucked around the gun to conceal it. Not quite as comfortable as appendix carry, but it works for the occasion. The main thing is to be proficient with your method of carry. If you carry in a bag, be able to get to the gun smoothly (slow is smooth and smooth is fast - don't jerk). If you know you're in a sketchy area then you may want to go ahead and have your gun in your hand. If you're not then just be able to get to it quickly.

Practice and develop a sense of awareness no matter where you go. That is your most critical skill to develop as situational awareness can help you avoid a fight altogether, and that is best. Hope this helps!
 

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Welcome to the site! It is not at all a stupid question! My wife carries mainly in a purse or bag. The trick there is to have a system in place to get to the gun quickly. You don't want it just jostling around in the bag, so you may want to invest in one designed specifically for carrying a gun. There are tons of options for purses and packs.

Also, wrt a belly band, there are options available that do protect the trigger, but that is a very legitimate concern! If you don't wear a belt this may be a good options for you, but you may also want to consider changing how you dress to better accommodate carrying a gun as well. As the old saying goes, dress to the gun. My wife is 5'3 115lbs, and she likes to wear the cute body hugging clothes (and I like he to), which is why she normally carries in a bag of some type, but she just recently started getting used to carrying her Shield at the appendix. This is a more comfortable way to carry b/c it does not force the gun to bear against the hip when wearing tighter fitting clothes, and it is easy to conceal even with the cute shirts.

It is all about what you like, but I recommend trying a few different ways to see what works best. You may find that a number of ways works for the given situation. Most of us carry according to what we're doing. I carry mainly appendix with an untucked shirt, but if I'm wearing a suit or tucking my shirt in, I will wear on my hip with my shirt tucked around the gun to conceal it. Not quite as comfortable as appendix carry, but it works for the occasion. The main thing is to be proficient with your method of carry. If you carry in a bag, be able to get to the gun smoothly (slow is smooth and smooth is fast - don't jerk). If you know you're in a sketchy area then you may want to go ahead and have your gun in your hand. If you're not then just be able to get to it quickly.

Practice and develop a sense of awareness no matter where you go. That is your most critical skill to develop as situational awareness can help you avoid a fight altogether, and that is best. Hope this helps!
I don't have much to add to this very good post, except to emphasize a couple of GCBHM's points about purse carry.

First, off-body carry can slow access, so you must have a system that allows you to get to the gun as fast as possible, and you must practice that system.

Second, just dropping a naked gun into a purse is dreadfully unsafe, and NDs have resulted from this. You must utilize some device that protects the trigger from snagging on other objects in your purse, or from your fingers as you are rummaging for the gun inside the bag.
 
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We kinda prefer you don't shoot yourself as well...;)

All the belly-band systems I am familiar with do protect the trigger, some also have top straps to make sure the firearms stay put.

As to any off-body carry is concerned, I strongly recommend against it for a number of reasons.

Know that my wife has been subjected to my firearms life for the 22 years we have been married, including assisting with administrative tasks in almost all my concealed carry classes since 2003. She is very firearms savvy and meticulous in her carry methods - now. In spite of my objections to her carrying in a "carry-purse" with a cross body strap, she left not only her purse, but her firearm three times in bathrooms before she honestly got the message.

That's also the same message when it comes to fanny packs.

IMO, the only reliable carry method is on the body. For women like yourself that don't wear a belt, there are a few options but I've suggested a few to a lot of ladies over the years - until it dawned on me that the only one that was overwhelmingly preferred was FlashBang Holsters. Hit the link and check them out.

Another consideration are the magnetic IWB holsters from JM4 Tactical. I recently had one of my students bring one to the range to shoot her re-qualifier to renew her license. I had a chance to check it out and found it to be pretty secure even without a belt. The only down-side to it I saw is also an up-side. The gun is also pretty strongly attracted to the magnets which make drawing the firearm without withdrawing the holder from the garment you're wearing questionable - however the upside is increased retention.

Just some observations. Hope they help.
 
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Mrs. Flash has been around guns since her first marriage to a cop at age 21 and has been carrying for around 12 years.

She carries in a fanny pack. I've tried to talk her out of it, but it's a ton better than a purse as purses get put in the baby carrier in grocery carts and in an adjacent chair in restaurants and all kinds of other places and her fanny pack doesn't. It stays on her unless she's in the loo or at home.

I can't talk her out of it because she's never, ever left it anywhere in all these years. She's scrupulous about it and so I have no valid argument.

Happy wife, happy life.
 

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My wife purse carries (usually a S&W 642 airweight with Crimson Trace laser grips). I have found that it is CHEAPER for me to modify her purses that she likes than try to find a purse made for carry. Several holsters that are made for carry that are made with cloth can be easily sewn into nearly any purse. We take ours to our dry cleaner and have her sew them right in. Usually $25 (ish) dollars for the pocket/ankle holster (I like the kind that have kydex and neoprene) and $10 for the sewing. Seems to work out for Mrs ma6907. She is very particular and likes designer purses so the thought of going somewhere and buying a "carry purse" is not her thing.
 

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If you are going to edc the 320 carry, I think you will find iwb and flash bang and belly bands will be hard to adjust to as this is not a small gun. Many people do carry a full size gun iwb. My wife carries a 320 sub compact in her NRA branded purse or a fanny pack. She has tried iwb she can't adjust to it and owb she just does like the way she has to dress. She rarely wears a belt and as of this time she has been very careful with her purse with no problems remembering what she has in it. Her draw from this purse is very smooth. There is a holster that is adjustable to any gun that will fit in the purse. It is held in place by strong velcro. If you go with a purse made for a gun make sure that your gun will fit in it. They usually give dimensiions or what size guns will fit. Many people have bought many different holsters in a quest to find one they are really happy with. Good luck on your journey.
 

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Check out Dene Adams Concealed Carry Solutions For Women. My fiancee has the Romance version of the corset and she has also tried the leggings. Verdict is out on the leggings, I think because she doesn't have many skirts to wear with them. But she is digging the corset. She is not a carry all the time gal. And I don't much question her about it as its all a personal decision. But she does wear it from time to time when I'm not around. Only complaint I've heard from her is it can have a warming affect on the midsection as it's just more material there covering your skin. I'm just pleased she has found something she likes. She tried the bellyband setup from Crossbreed Holsters and didn't like it in the slightest. Watch some of the youtube Dene Adams videos as well.

If you haven't heard of The Well Armed Woman I suggest you look them up. I tried to link a Chapter I found in Georgia. Not sure if it will work or not. Good luck with everything and I just want to say welcome and I'm glad you and countless other women are getting so involved with Firearms and the 2A.

Also I almost hate to say this because it sucks when you realize its true. But there are no perfect holsters and no perfect guns. But it can be a dang good time trying to find ones that are close!
 

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Don't know if you've seen this, or already had training, anyway:
Jeff Cooper's 4 gun safety rules

RULE 1
ALL GUNS ARE ALWAYS LOADED

The only exception to this occurs when one has a weapon in his hands and he has personally unloaded it for checking. As soon as he puts it down, Rule 1 applies again.

RULE 2
NEVER LET THE MUZZLE COVER ANYTHING YOU ARE NOT PREPARED TO DESTROY

You may not wish to destroy it, but you must be clear in your mind that you are quite ready to if you let that muzzle cover the target. To allow a firearm to point at another human being is a deadly threat, and should always be treated as such.

RULE 3
KEEP YOUR FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER TIL YOUR SIGHTS ARE ON THE TARGET

This we call the Golden Rule because its violation is responsible for about 80 percent of the firearms disasters we read about.

RULE 4
BE SURE OF YOUR TARGET

You never shoot at anything until you have positively identified it. You never fire at a shadow, or a sound, or a suspected presence. You shoot only when you know absolutely what you are shooting at and what is beyond it.

 
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Timing being what it is, my wife carries IWB at the 4:30 position, and today I hear a loud Oh No from the bathroom. Yup, the holster and piece took a swim in the toilet as she was unbuckling. I needed to clean our EDCs today anyway, so no harm no foul. She has only been carrying a short time so I went over removal, placing, replacement for a bathroom break. My fault since I hadn't done that initially. I saw Steve's post about leaving the wife things in bathrooms etc... and I think I talked her through how to avoid that today. Time will tell. I guess the main point is newbies DO need to be coached through gun safety and carry awareness and I didn't do that.

Btw, her .380 BG is easy to dis and reassemble but after a handful of cleanings of my 938, I realize despite complaints about the spring reassembly, that my least favorite part of the disassembly is the slide stop. Just a PITA.
 

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Helpful questions and replies. My wife and I were talking Saturday about how she can carry once she gets used to the p238. For now, she is thinking about a combination of shoulder holster and bag carry. She has a lean build and doesn't like the idea of hip carry and is also concerned the flashbang might not work for her. I saw some ideas on this thread I hadn't seen before, so I'll point them out to her.
 
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