I sometimes find options for comfortable and effective concealed carry of large, high-capacity pistols or all-steel revolvers are limited. Often I end up carrying my handgun on my strong side hip in an outside-the-waistband (OWB) rig. This method allows my fastest draw execution, and I get on target the quickest, having carried various duty pistols in the same position through 37 years of uniformed law enforcement.

Utilizing this carry position, I need various covering garments such as shirts, jackets or hiking vests. Even wearing an inside-the-waistband (IWB) holster requires a covering garment to conceal a large handgun. The external belt clips draw attention to what is going on below the shirt. Fortunately, untucked shirts are very popular these days. And 5.11 has plenty of shirt options from which to choose.

5.11 Wyatt Button-Up Casual Short-Sleeve Shirts

5.11 has a wide lineup of shirts for men, including T-shirts, polos and button-ups. For women, there are tees and tanks, polos and button-ups. Long and short sleeve shirts are available for both men and women. The shirt selection is excellent. In fact, the entire 5.11 clothing lineup is excellent.

The Wyatt shirt I’m reviewing today is lightweight and comfortable. It is 60/40 cotton/polyester, short-sleeved and doesn’t scream “tactical.” And plaid versions were recently added.

The Wyatt shirts feature a center-front RapiDraw placket with excellent 5.11+ logo metal snaps rather than standard buttons. The snaps allow “rip open” access to crossdraw or appendix carried handguns. For strong-side carried guns, it is easier to lift the shirt with the opposite hand to access the handgun rather than clearing the snaps.

Wearing 5.11 Shirts

The folks at 5.11 sent me two Wyatt plaid shirts to try out: a grayish-white plaid and a blue turbulence plaid. I normally wear a size large but ordered an extra-large just so I could be sure of completely covering my 9mm SIG Sauer M17. A large would have been sufficient to conceal pistols with barrel lengths of about 3 inches. Of course, that also depends on the holster style used. My DeSantis Vanquisher IWB holster would allow easily carrying larger guns in a smaller size shirt.

Patterns are excellent for adding to a shirt’s concealment ability. Plaid breaks up the outline of the pistol and diverts the eye, so I am glad 5.11 added a choice of plaid to the Wyatt shirts. Often, Plaid also imparts a relaxed, non-threatening look.

Both the sample Wyatts are nice enough to wear to church, where my usual carry pistol is my Alchemy Firearm’s Prime Classic Carry .38 Super. It is important to have a carry method that doesn’t expose any pistol to the congregation. I don’t want to risk startling anyone by inadvertent exposure of my handgun.

Both Wyatt shirts have worked perfectly anyplace I’ve worn them. The 60 percent cotton keeps me cool, while the polyester blend keeps the shirt from clinging to the butt of the gun. I’m just an older guy in a nice, casual shirt, and no one notices my gun.

Wrap Up

I really like the 5.11 Plaid Wyatt shirts. They are well-constructed, work great and look great, plus help to hide a lawfully concealed firearm in plain sight. They look great with 5.11’s Defender jeans or khakis. For cold weather wear, check out the Gunner or Igor long sleeve shirts in plaid. The MSRP of the Wyatt shirt in plaid is $45.


5.11: 511tactical.com


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