The Ruger LC9s and Guardian Angel Mini IWB concealed underneath the reviewer’s thin t-shirt. (Photo: Jacki Billings)
Guardian Angel holsters is a small operation offering molded Kydex holsters. Marketing primarily through Facebook, the company offered to send me one of their Mini-IWB rigs to test against my petite frame with the Ruger LC9s. Curious to see if the minimalist style would work, stay in place and offer the same level of comfort as my usual EDC, I accepted the offer and began testing the Mini-IWB system.
The Mini IWB fully guards the trigger while offering great retention on the firearm. (Photo: Jacki Billings)
As I mentioned first, the holster is made from Kydex, a type of hard plastic that can be shaped to fit individual guns. This means this rig is not a universal system. The holster I received was molded to fit my Ruger LC9s, a gun I carry when I’m wearing tighter shirts or outfits that don’t allow for a double stack pistol.
I found that to pair the Ruger with one of my outfits, I needed a slim holster to really pull the whole outfit and carry method together. The Mini-IWB seemed like the perfect solution.
The thin Kydex shell slips inside-the-waistband and flawlessly conceals under shirts and blouses. (Photo: Jacki Billings)
The Kydex used to fashion the holster is one of the slimmest in my collection of rigs. It’s just enough to provide a sturdy platform for the gun to ride without adding extra bulk under a shirt and pants. Simultaneously, it adds a level of safety that fabric holsters miss. The molded design not only aids retention, but it also covers that all important trigger area, protecting it fully from being accidentally engaged.
Retention is phenomenal. The molded design allows my Ruger to slip right into place and be drawn efficiently, and I can also roll around on the floor with my kids without fear of a floppy gun.
Though this reviewer prefers a cant to her IWB holsters, the Mini IWB can be adjusted to accommodate vertical positions. (Photo: Jacki Billings)
Upon receiving the holster, I immediately tossed it on my hip. Like a lot of women, I find straight 3 o’clock carry difficult due to hips, so I opted to place the holster at the 4 to 5 o’clock position behind the hip, inside the waistband.
Thanks to studs mounted on the sides of the holster, the carry angle can be adjusted to fit the shooters’ specific needs. I prefer a cant to my IWB rigs and I was able to accomplish that through the loosening and re-tightening of a screw.
The holster is easy on/off thanks to a simple belt clip. The belt clip, like the holster, is sturdy. I’ve used this holster for a few months and the clip shows no signs of wear and tear. It reliably holds the gun on my belt with no movement, even as I’m chasing kids around the playground.
The belt clip easily slides on and off belts. (Photo: Jacki Billings)
At the time I was sporting a fitted shirt and skinny jeans. Despite the tighter attire, the Ruger and Mini-IWB seemed to melt into my side. Since then, I’ve tried the rig with just about every fitted shirt in my closet and still can’t make it print. Now, I will add I don’t wear super tight clothing and if I did, I might have an issue. For simple fitted outfits, however, the Mini IWB works well.
Having experienced my fair share of Kydex holsters that weren’t completely jagged edge free, I was pleased to see that Guardian Angel does an extraordinary job in the finishing process. All edges have been smoothed and the holster itself has a sleek feel that rides very comfortably while carrying.
Though retention is tight on the Ruger, it still left enough space to draw efficiently. (Photo: Jacki Billings)
Though the Guardian Angel Mini-IWB doesn’t offer any padding between the wearer and holster, the lack of extra fabric makes this rig a great option for summer wear. Even in the heat of a Tennessee summer, I didn’t feel as if the Mini-IWB made me anymore sweaty. In addition, the kydex design can be cleaned by simply wiping the rig down – another plus for those hot summer days.
Pretty in pink
As I sat down to work on my notes for this review and I really studied the Mini-IWB I noticed the nuances in the pink of the rig. Let me be clear, I hate the color pink and generally detest holsters and gear in that scheme; but somehow the Guardian Angel holster won me over.
Though this reviewer isn’t a fan of pink, the detailed checkered pattern on the holster gives the rig a sleeker look. (Photo: Jacki Billings)
I attribute my lack of hate towards the color to the fact that it wasn’t just a straight, obnoxious pink theme. Guardian Angel really took the time to add a textured, checkered pattern. The pattern, as simple of an addition as it is, I think gives the holster a sleeker more elegant feel than a straight bright pink number would. In addition, the holster features black attributes such as the belt clip that give it some edge.
Did I roll my eyes at the loud, bright color when it arrived on my doorstep? Yes, I did. But, the performance of the holster quickly won me over and in no time I had forgotten the color entirely. (Not to mention, Guardian Angel does offer other colors.)
The Guardian Angel Mini-IWB is a great option if you’re in the mood for a low-profile means of carry. Pairing perfectly alongside my Ruger LC9s, the Mini-IWB provided excellent retention, trigger safety and a reliable means to conceal. Starting at $35, the Mini-IWB is an affordable option for shooters looking for a simple, Kydex holster design.
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