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Doug  Wyllie

Doug Wyllie

Doug Wyllie has authored more than 1,000 articles and tactical tips aimed at ensuring that police officers are safer and more successful on the streets. Doug is a Western Publishing Association “Maggie Award” winner for Best Regularly Featured Digital Edition Column. He is a member of International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA), an Associate Member of the California Peace Officers’ Association (CPOA), and a member of the Public Safety Writers Association (PSWA).

Lynne Doucette

Lynne Doucette

Lt. Lynne D. Doucette is a patrol supervisor and defensive tactics trainer with the Brunswick (Maine) PD. Prior to being the first female promoted at BPD, she worked as an undercover detective assigned to the state narcotics task force.

Patricia Teinert

Patricia Teinert

Patricia A. Teinert has been a Texas peace officer since 1984. She has served as a patrol officer, investigator, and member of a juvenile gang and narcotics task force. She is currently a patrol officer with Katy ISD Police Department.
Women in Law Enforcement

Basic Concealed-Carry Tips for Small-Framed Females

Choosing the right firearm and the best way to secure it for your individual needs takes careful consideration and common sense.

January 19, 2012  |  by Higgins P. QTip

Photo: Johan.V.
Photo: Johan.V.

Men seem to have it so easy when it comes to concealed carry weapons. They tend to have bigger frames, longer torsos—more "bulk to hide the bulge." We women, especially of the small-frame variety, don't have it so easy.

Where we want to carry the firearm; whether it's on our person or in a purse; what weapon we choose to carry; what type of holster we choose must be considered. The most important factors to consider are safety, ease of access, and whether what we're carrying is going to get the job done.

Everyone has her personal preference when it comes to firearms. Me? I'm a semi-auto woman, .40-cal. I know that I can shoot accurately with this type of weapon. I'm familiar with it. I can field-strip it blindfolded. The type of holster I have is made for my weapon of choice to carry, and I know how to wear it on my person and carry it safely holstered in my purse.

This is my personal set-up: Glock G27 and right-handed Blackhawk SERPA holster. My weapon is an extension of me and my holster melds almost seamlessly with my body.

When you choose your own personal set-up, here are a few questions to consider:

Am I able to safely and accurately handle my weapon of choice?

Ask yourself if you feel comfortable handling and firing your weapon. Are you familiar with its mechanisms? Can you field strip it if necessary? Can you safely and properly handle a jam or misfire? Do you religiously practice with your firearm, both dry fire and live fire?

Does the make and model fit the purpose for which I want it?

This is fairly self-explanatory. Obviously you wouldn't want to choose a .357 revolver with a 5.5-inch barrel for concealed carry.

Is there a CC holster for my weapon of choice that will fit my body?

Make sure you get a holster that fits both your weapon and you. Determine where on your body you want to carry, then try on different rigs—thigh, ankle, or paddle. The clothes you wear determine which set-up you use. (If I wore a dress, I'd opt for a thigh strap instead of carrying my gun in my purse.)

Am I able to safely and swiftly retrieve my weapon if the situation arises?

Practice with your weapon and the type of holster you'll use; wear the type of clothes you would have on in any given circumstance. Check off these three items, when choosing a holster:

  • Always make sure you know how to properly use the weapon you choose to carry.
  • Make sure that the size of the weapon isn't too big for you to properly carry concealed.
  • Always try on your holster.

Just pretend you're trying on jeans in a department store. It can take awhile, but it's imperative that you have a proper fit.

If you choose to carry, use common sense. If you carry your weapon in your purse, make sure it's properly secured in a holster or in the compartment meant for your gun (in a concealed-carry purse). Make sure the safety is on, and never leave your purse unattended. Don't leave it on the restaurant table; don't ask your friend to watch it while you talk to an old friend a few tables away; and don't leave it in the restroom. It only takes a moment of inattentiveness on your part in order for someone to get hold of your deadly weapon.

Take the time to find your ideal CCW set-up. It will keep you and the public you serve much safer.

Higgins P. QTip is the pen name of an aspiring police officer who is completing her training. She is also and an avid shooter.

Comments (8)

Displaying 1 - 8 of 8

Russ @ 1/23/2012 12:34 PM

Excellent article. Drives home some very good points. Gives a female perspective that is rarely, if ever, discussed. This writer did an excellent job.

Russ @ 1/23/2012 12:34 PM


PTeinert @ 1/23/2012 9:38 PM

Clear and Concise, I would only add to the statement..."Practice with your weapon and the type of holster you'll use; ..." If possible at the range. This will test your speed and accuracy.

gp cobb @ 1/23/2012 10:45 PM

I really like this guy Hickok45 and his collection. Females give this a look; I think there is lots to learn here. Good luck.

clifford @ 1/24/2012 12:26 AM

As a seasoned Police Officer (Retired) I have tried everything from my Walther PPK to my Rock Island Sub-Compact 45... I stand 6 Ft 1 and weight in at 235... I have found my Sub Compact 45 fits me well.. even though it is only a 7 shot pistol it is in fact a 45 and with massive knock down power, I feel pretty sure in a incident a well placed round will eliminate any threat... Yaall be safe out there..

Tina Vitacco @ 1/25/2012 7:00 PM

I am a female police officer with a small frame and really short and live in a climate where we wear shorts almost year round. I finally found a "bra holster" I'm happy with on eBay. Generally I carry in my concealed-carry purse but am always afraid someone bigger than me (anyone) will grab my purse and there goes my gun. I found the under arm bra holster (cross draw) is the easiest for me to conceal but still difficult in the summer. But definately better than nothing! If you do an eBay search for "bra holster" you'll see some great ideas.

Donna @ 3/28/2012 8:56 AM

Thank you for any infor that may help me. I'm only 5"1 give or take. I'm looking for a new weapon and holster that would be just right for when I'm in the saddle, hiking or shopping. I'm new to carrying and have yet to meet other women who do. I want to learn,learn and learn.

Emily @ 4/10/2013 12:09 PM

Higgins P. QTip is Not an inspiring Police Officer. That "Pen" name is a fraud. There are plenty of Wanna Be Cops out there, and unfortunately she's one of them.

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