Locked-breech micro pistols, like the .380 ACP Ruger LCP and LCP II and the Smith & Wesson Bodyguard, are extremely popular these days, simply because there are few places that pistols this small CAN’T be easily — and, more importantly, comfortably — concealed. Yes, there are a few types of handguns that are smaller, but they are generally chambered for less-powerful cartridges like .22 LR, .25 ACP and .32 ACP.
One of the best and most popular places to carry a pistol like this with the right-cut trousers or shorts is inside one of the pockets. To prove that point, the Ruger LCP II comes with a soft inside-the-pocket holster rather than a carry pouch. For me, the front pockets work best, and when I am working patrol, my .38 Special Smith & Wesson M&P Bodyguard usually resides in my left front pocket. Even though I am right-handed, I carry my gun in my left pocket for weak-hand drawing and firing. This is because in an emergency, my right hand is likely to be busy doing something of equal or greater importance — such as fending off a grab for my duty handgun.
Just because pistols like the LCP II are small doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be carried in more standard locations, such as on the belt in an outside-the-waistband holster. Here, they are in a position more convenient to the draw and are located in a place from which the user may be used to drawing.
DeSantis Gunhide is one of the more prominent holster manufacturers on the market and has been so for many years. I have used their nylon Apache Ankle Rig off and on for 15 years, as well as their leather 001 belt holster during the last two years for my Walther PPK/S. I can report that they both have held up very well, and their quality is excellent.
While DeSantis works in synthetic materials these days, leather products are where I think DeSantis really shines. While I use synthetic holsters of differing brands and configurations — particularly for duty use — I still prefer leather holsters for concealment or plainclothes carry.
The Quick Snap is an all-leather concealment holster for micro pistols. It features a thumb break retention strap that runs across the rear of the slide to hold it in place. Additional retention is obtained by the friction fit of the molded leather around the shape of the gun (the gun in this case being the Ruger LCP II). Good friction fit provides an additional layer of weapon security in case the thumb break should inadvertently become un-snapped and prevents the handgun from falling out of the holster when it is least expected (which would be bad).
The key feature of the Quick Snap separates it from the herd and gives this holster its name. Instead of a fixed belt loop arrangement, the Quick Snap uses a flap of leather from the top of the holster body that is cut into a rounded tip that folds over and snaps back onto a directional snap on the bottom of the holster body. The purpose of this is to allow easy off-and-on access without having to undo a trouser belt.
While my sample Quick Snap came in tan color, black is also available. It is designed to accommodate belts up to a 1½-inch width. Even though a heavy belt is not needed to support a lightweight handgun like the Ruger LCP II, it still is important in keeping the handgun and holster in a stable position for access and the draw. Plus, there is more play in the belt loop to accommodate the snap “on-and-off” feature.
The Quick Snap holds the handgun in a butt-forward-cant position. This position helps encourage the wearer to assume a “gunfighter crouch” position as the handgun is accessed and the draw begins. It also makes a gun-grab attempt from behind more difficult, even if the thumb break is unsnapped, since the attempt to draw the handgun out will be made against the leather of the holster rather than out of the open top of the holster.
The LCP II easily slid into the Quick Snap. As with all new leather holsters, there is a bit of stretching that is needed. Proper fit was easily attained with the DeSantis Quick Snap by working the LCP II in and leaving it snapped overnight. In years past, I worked with some leather holsters that took much more serious work before they were ready for carry, including soaking straps in water before fastening them and letting them dry in the snapped position. None of that is needed with the Quick Snap, due to the precision cutting and leather forming used by DeSantis.
The forward-cant position is a bit more positive than that of other holsters I am used to. However, this presented no problem with the draw when standing or seated. When you’re seated, the butt of the gun is positioned almost straight up, making the draw quite easy.
There was a bit more play on the belt with the Quick Snap — even with a double-thickness trouser belt — than I am used to with belt holsters that use belt slots, but that’s ok. Due to shoulder-mobility issues, I found it difficult to snap onto my belt. Persons with normal mobility should not have a problem. I found it easier to just run my belt through the holster belt loop with it already snapped. Even if you rarely use the Quick Snap feature, it is still available as an option.
I have been very impressed with DeSantis gear, and expect to review more of their products in the future. Price of the Quick Snap is $53.99 direct from the DeSantis website (www.desantisholster.com). Quick Snap holsters are available for mini/micro handguns from most manufacturers.