Best Small of Back (SOB) Holsters of 2020

Available among a lot of different holster designs is the small of back holster. Also known as an SOB or MOB (middle of back), these type of holsters offer great concealment and effective function to the bearer.

Here we’ll be talking about the design, features, and aspects of an SOB holster, outlining the qualities an ideal SOB holster must have.

We will also review a few top of the line SOB holsters to help with your buying decision.

Best Small of Back Holsters Comparison Chart

PRODUCT
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Universal Small of Back Concealed Carry Holster

  • Best small of back holster
  • Suits almost every Glock model handgun including some other brands
  • Leather design protects the weapon and fits comfortably
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Desantis Small of Back Holster for 1911

  • Best small of back holster for 1911
  • Leather design conforms to the body shape for comfort
  • Aesthetically pleasing design and protective finish for the weapon
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Pro-tech Small of the Back Holster

  • Best small of back holster IWB
  • Universal design fits compact, sub-compact, medium and large-frame guns
  • Ambidextrous design and open-ended to accept brakes
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Magnetic Retention Belly Band Holster

  • Best small of back holster OWB on our list
  • Features a magnet for effective retention, alignment, and silence
  • Works with mounted red dots, lights/lasers, and other mods
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Active Pro Gear Small of the Back Concealment Holster

  • Best small of back concealed carry holster
  • Specially designed for kidney carry to avoid spinal injuries
  • Sits close to the body and offers good comfort while driving
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Gould & Goodrich G&G Back Holster

  • Best small of back leather holster
  • Also works with belts up to 1.5 inches in width
  • Adjustable retention and durable design with a protective finish
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What is a Small of Back Holster? 

As the name itself suggests, it is the position where this holster is worn. For those who don’t know, the small of the back is the curved region in the lower part of your back where the spine curves in at the level of the waist.

A small of back (SOB) holster is sometimes also referred to as a middle of back (MOB) holster because it is generally worn at the center of the lower back.

Man wearing a small of back holster (Source)

An SOB holster is meant to provide extensive concealment when you wear a jacket, suit, or short blazer. Sometimes, side draw belt holsters might protrude and reveal the outline of the weapon. These SOB holsters can be worn IWB or OWB depending upon your choice, which also classifies them as palm-in or palm-out designs.

There are several other uses of an SOB holster but more on that later.

Why are Small of Back (SOB) Holsters Ideal?

Well, there are quite a few good reasons to answer this question.

Concealment

The first and foremost aspect that makes an SOB holster ideal is its concealment. SOB holsters are ideal for concealing small handguns. Any other holster type (IWB or open carry holsters) is prone to showing an outline of itself, or the weapon, while you move or sit. But, an SOB holster is technically immune to this problem.

Ease of Pocket Access

Another important aspect is the ease of pocket access. Nearly all holsters (except the ankle holster) can make it difficult to access your pants or coat pockets.

An SOB holster eliminates this problem due to its position. Apart from that, it is also not going to interfere with your daily tasks.

Prevention of Sway and Wobble

Furthermore, an SOB holster prevents any swaying or wobble of the holster while you jog or run. This feature is helpful while you have to climb stairs, run, or lift any weights while your gun is holstered.

SOB holsters are sometimes more comfortable than an IWB concealed carry holster, especially when you are driving or sitting for short stretches of time.

Aspects of a Great Small of Back Holster

Everybody wants to own an ideal product. As a prerequisite to this, you must consider certain aspects which make the product stand out. Let's take a look at several aspects that make it great.

Comfort

Due to the unconventional position of an SOB holster, it must be very comfortable. Kydex may be a good choice for the holster, but nylon or leather are more viable options for the holster, as well as padding for comfort. Also, keep in mind your dominant hand when ordering an SOB holster because they are not ambidextrous.

Concealment

Although SOB holsters offer good concealment, some designs make the barrel visible when used OWB or make the holster protrude. Additionally, you must also check with your wardrobe, so it complements your concealed carry SOB holster.

Draw and Retention

A good SOB holster must offer a quick draw in the angle you are most comfortable with, although it takes some time and practice. Plus, the holster must also offer proper and adjustable retention, like any good holster does.

Are All Small of Back Holsters the Same?

Different SOB holsters have different configurations, dominant hand, material, and level of comfort. For example, nylon or leather-based holsters are a bit more comfortable than Kydex ones. Some have a flared opening at the end and some don’t.

Similarly, some SOB holsters are designed to be used as IWB, whereas some are OWB. Each offers different levels of concealment.

Your SOB holster can be accessible either by palm-in or palm-out position. Palm out draw is somewhat more time consuming than a palm-in draw because you have to insert your hand in the narrow space between the gun and your spine to grip the weapon.

Custom Small of Back Holster Palm Out (Source)

Additionally, some holsters have a thumb release retention strap that offers better retention and safety to the weapon.

Quick Take -

The Best Small of Back Holsters

Review of the Best Small of Back Holsters

Now that we understand the practical and possible uses of an SOB holster and the aspects which make one ideal, let's take a look and review the best small of back holsters available on the market.

Most of these holsters are universal for multiple gun models, whereas some are designed for specific gun types. It is also advised to check with your local concealed carry laws, so you don’t violate them by mistake.

Dazzling 2019 New Leather Holster for Glock 17,19,21,22,23,26,27,31,32,33,36,42,43, Sig P365, M&P Shield, TP 9 Elite, MC 28, P226, 1911 5', Browning HP

Pros

  • Compact size
  • Fits many guns
  • Lifetime replacement warranty
  • Comfortable while moving or sitting

Cons

  • Not adjustable
  • Opens at the muzzle end

What Recent Buyers Report

A lot of new users were quite happy with this holster and the way it fit. The fit and feel were quite comfortable while being able to handle many pistols of different sizes like full-size or compact. One user said this holster gave him quick and easier access to his pistol over some of the IWB holsters he’s used in the past. Overall, he was not disappointed at all with the holster’s performance since it was able to keep his pistol in place and well-concealed out of plain sight.

Why it Stands Out to Us 

This holster is made from genuine leather and is easy on the skin (assuming you are wearing it under a shirt). So if you have sensitive skin, there’s a good chance you’ll enjoy wearing this holster without any skin irritation at all. This holster is also universal, so it can pretty much fit any pistol you can think of, regardless of size. If you are having a hard time finding the perfect holster for your pistol, this might be the fail-safe option for you. 

The Universal Small of Back Holster is probably the best concealed carry holster in this list. This holster is very small and compact and fits most mid and full-sized pistols. The holster has a clip to attach it to a belt, as well as a belt loop on another side. The holster can be used IWB as well as OWB and is ambidextrous.

The leather construction is great and loosens up with time for a perfect fit. The holster draws quickly, and the not-so-big design prevents it from digging into your spine and making it uncomfortable.

Who Would Use This Most?

If you want a holster that will fit most pistols, this will definitely be put to good use. You certainly won’t be disappointed with the overall fit and finish of this holster. And make no mistake, it will be compatible with most calibers and sizes. So you won’t have to guess whether or not your pistol will fit other holsters or not. Universal will always be a good fallback option for you.

Bottom Line

The Universal Small of Back Concealed Carry Holster might just be the go-to choice for those who want a really good holster for their pistol. It will fit nicely on the small of your back and give you nothing more than a comfortable fit that is second to none while handling your favorite pistol for concealed carry. For a bulge-free, easy-on-the-skin holster, this could be right up your alley.

The Universal SOB fits most medium and full-sized pistols without much effort and retains them properly, which is its best feature. The holster is compact and the leather is comfortable. This is a must-buy if you plan to holster different types of guns in your SOB holster.

Best Small of Back Holster for 1911:
Desantis Small of Back Holster for 1911

DeSantis Small of Back Holster for 1911 45 Caliber Gun, Right Hand, Tan

Pros

  • Angled for quick draw
  • Adjustable tension device
  • Durable and comfortable leather design
  • Works well with heavy metal frame pistols

Cons

  • Limited concealment

What Recent Buyers Report

New users were Colt 1911 owners looking for a holster that made conceal carrying these types of pistols a lot easier than most. Of course, with the use of this holster, it was no contest. They loved how easily it fit their Colt 1911 pistols while providing excellent comfort and quick, easy drawing and re-holstering. Even the leather material was sturdy and allowed for a really comfortable feel for most users. One user said he had to ditch his old holster for this one because it would constantly irritate his skin. With this holster, he didn't have to suffer any longer.

Why it Stands Out to Us 

This holster is made of leather, so the durability will be excellent. The aesthetics will be pleasing and carrying your 1911 will be reliable and secure. In short, this holster can perform the task well while providing you with superior comfort and easy access so you can draw fast and re-holster fast. And yes, you will carry your pistol out of plain sight and it won’t give off any undue attention. 

The Desantis SOB holster has been specially designed to accommodate handguns made on the 1911 frame.

The holster features a pure leather design with a properly-shaped muzzle end, ensuring the barrel doesn’t dig into your back while you move or sit.

This 1911 holster is carried in "butt up" position and accommodates belts up to 1-1/2" wide. The retention device lets you holster your weapon securely into place.

Who Will Use This Most 

If you own a Colt 1911, you have a holster that will not only have that old-school look, but it will be just as reliable and sturdy as the holsters that have carried the 1911 models of ages past. Yes, it’s a pistol that’s been around for a long time. And it’s a pistol that deserves a holster you can rely on for many years down the road. 

Bottom Line

The DeSantis Small of Back Holster for 1911 is a Colt owner’s dream (especially those owning the venerable 1911 model pistols). It fits perfectly and the aesthetics truly are appreciated by those that love the old-school style. For a reliable pistol that has long been around for many years and has undergone some changes, this holster might just be the real deal for 1911 users like yourself. 

The DeSantis holster is made of leather and is capable of bearing heavy 1911 frames. The holster will stand the test of time and will provide a quick draw due to its angled design. Overall, the holster is good for carrying 1911-frame handguns on outings, for everyday carry, or on hunting trips in the SOB position.

Best Small of Back Holster IWB:
Pro-tech's Small of the Back Holster

Pro-tech's in the Pants Small of the Back Holster for Medium and Large Frame

Pros

  • Ambidextrous
  • Comfortable fit
  • High concealment
  • Minimalistic design
  • Fits most handguns

Cons

  • More difficult to reholster than some others
  • Clip might need adjustments initially

What Recent Buyers Report

Many new users were able to use this holster to store their pistols of choice behind the back while it provided excellent concealability. They said the holster remained in place and didn’t wiggle around or slip out of position. The overall comfort was pretty good and no wearing and tearing occurred with every draw or re-holstering, according to most users. 

Why it Stands Out to Us 

This is another holster made from high-quality nylon that will benefit compact pistol users. It’s at the right size to handle the pistol you favor most for concealed carry. So you’ll get the best possible fit and concealability for your compact pistol with a holster that is solid in quality and affordable for most budgets. Simply put, it’s a holster that obviously does the task it was made to do. 

The Pro-Tech is a reliable IWB small of back holster, which can carry handguns ranging from compact to medium and large weapon frames. The holster features an all nylon body with double stitched seams and a metal clip to attach to your belt. This model is small and compact and won’t hurt your spine. The holster is ambidextrous and offers good concealment, even with loose t-shirts.

Who Will Use This Most 

This would be a great holster for those who carry compact pistols on a regular basis and want a holster that allows for easy and quick drawing and re-holstering. Yes, it’s made from high-quality nylon (some nylon holsters may be known for snagging). But rest assured, this is one of those holsters where snagging won’t be much of an occurrence (and may not happen at all). If you want a holster that won’t suck the life out of your bank account and will provide ample concealability for your favorite pistol, this could be the best choice for you.

Bottom Line

The Pro-Tech Small of the Back Holster is no slouch. Nor should it be dismissed as one of those cheap and flimsy holsters. It’s excellent in quality and will certainly be one of the best holsters you’ll own for a compact pistol. Fit this on the small of your back and you’ll have excellent comfort along with peace of mind in knowing you are prepared to use your pistol at any given time when danger is lurking nearby.

The Pro-Tech Holster is a good SOB holster for everyday carry. The nylon fabric is comfortable and the double stitched body is stable. The minimalist design is compact and the holster is priced aptly.

Best Small of Back Holster OWB:
Magnetic Retention Belly Band Holster

FreedomTactical Magnetic Belly Band Comfortable Concealed Carry Gun Holster Got Your Back Holster Glock 19 23 38 25 32 26 27 29 30 39 28 33 42 43 36 Smith Wesson M&P MP Shield small of back

Pros

  • Fits attachments
  • Fits most handguns
  • Adjustable bands and holster
  • Comfortable belly band and padding
  • Flexible holster with magnetic retention

Cons

  • More prone to print than others
  • Belly straps might feel uncomfortable

What Recent Buyers Report

This holster was a hit with many users and for a few good reasons. For one, the concealability was excellent and didn’t create any bulges when the holster was attached at the back or five o’clock position. This was perfect for new users that wanted nothing more than discreet concealed carry for EDC use. They were happy with the overall quality, along with the ability of the holster to fit most full-size and compact-sized pistols. While it provided an excellent function for concealed carry users, it was actually perfect for hands-free carrying for competitive shooters while they were not using the pistol at the range.

Why it Stands Out to Us 

Back holsters might be one of those vanity types according to some users. But sometimes, when you absolutely, positively have to have concealability, you’ll want a holster that will make sure you get it. The FreedomTactical Retention Belly Band Holster is compatible with many belly bands so you are able to conceal carry with comfort and with the highest level of concealability possible. This might just be a replacement for those hip carry holsters that just can’t cut the mustard when it comes to concealment. And since it’s magnetic, it will hold strong to your pistol, even when it’s fully loaded. So you won’t have to worry about stability in the slightest. 

This magnetic retention OWB holster is more of a belly band holster which can be used at the SOB position. The holster has to be strapped around the lower back for use. It has a heat-resistant nylon pocket, which is flexible enough to fit most guns.

The holster features a magnet in its base, which helps in retaining the gun. The magnet is strong enough to prevent the gun from falling out and facilitates smooth draw and retention. The holster can hold guns fitted with lasers, lights, and sights. The design provides a lot of space and a perfect position for comfort.

Who Will Use This Most 

This holster will be perfect for concealed carry or for safekeeping of your pistol when you are not using it at the range (because carrying it in your hands is quite risky). This is for those who want a small of the back holster that delivers excellent concealability and is near indestructible in quality, then you probably will enjoy this holster the most.

Bottom Line

The FreedomTactical Magnetic Retention Belly Band Holster will be your best friend in an every day carry situation if you want superior quality and probably the best discreet, under-the-radar concealment out there. This holster is not your average hip holster. It gives you stealthy carrying ability and will make sure you are prepared for when SHTF. 

The magnetic retention of the holster is a good feature which eliminates the need for straps, locks, and retention adjustment screws. The holster can fit attachments, works with many guns, and is an all-in-one versatile product.

Although, it takes a certain amount of space and belly bands might feel uncomfortable for certain people, this is a great option. Plus, you may need to use extra clothing for concealment.

Best Small of Back Concealed Carry:
Active Pro Gear Small of the Back Concealment Holster

Active Pro Gear Small of The Back (SOB) Gun Concealment Holster for Gun Concealed Carry | Conceal Carry Belt Holsters | Fits Glock, S&W, Ruger, 1911 | Made in USA

Pros

  • Easy to reholster
  • Great concealment
  • Comfortable material
  • Easy-to-access design

Cons

  • May sag toward one end with heavy pistols

What Recent Buyers Report

A lot of new users were looking for a holster that was available for either hand. While not an ambidextrous design, a lot of left-handed users were quite happy with the availability of this in a design that was strictly for their hand preference. One user said the drawing was quick and easy and he no longer suffered from the frustration of having to use a right-handed holster. He also added that the holster was really comfortable and took him a short time to install on his waistband.

Why It Stands Out To Us

This holster is known for making sure that kidney carry or small of the back carry is easy and convenient. At the same time, it also prevents you from any injury to your back or spinal cord. So if you want concealed carry that’s easy on your back and also easy for you to draw and re-holster, this holster might just be what you’re looking for. Made from high-quality nylon, it’s sturdy, resistant to any wearing and tearing, and will keep you comfortable should you choose to wear it all day long and every day.

The Active Pro SOB Holster features an angled draw and sits close to your body for concealment and comfort. The holster is designed for kidney carry as well, so you don’t feel uncomfortable while sitting or driving and can avoid any serious spinal cord injury.

The holster is made of waterproof foam and is lined on both sides for a smooth draw. Webbing inside the holster protects the gun’s sights and retains a flare for easy re-holstering. It is good for everyday carry.

Who Would Use This Most?

This would be a great concealed carry holster for those that want to try a different kind of concealed carry. If you want to give kidney carry or back carry a try, this is your opportunity to invest in a good, high-quality holster that is proven not to disappoint you when it comes to quality and performance. If you want a holster that is easy to attach and can handle a good number of your pistols (while loaded), this is the one you’ll want on hand. 

Bottom Line

This will certainly be an excellent back carry holster for those looking for a change in how they conceal carry a pistol. The Active Pro Gear Small of the Back Gun Concealment Holster will obviously be a holster that will provide the best concealability and comfortable carry for anyone looking to make a change from the regular IWB or OWB holsters. Plus, it is easier on your back and prevents further injury to it. 

The Active Pro Holster is good for everyday carry use. The kidney carry option protects you from any unexpected spinal cord injury. The holster is waterproof and comfortable, offering good concealment.

Best Small of Back Leather Holster:
Gould & Goodrich G&G Back Holster

Gould & Goodrich G&G Back Holster - 806

Pros

  • Adjustable tension
  • Genuine leather body
  • Pro can withstand heavy frames
  • Comfortable to carry, breaks-in easily

Cons

  • Doesn’t cover the trigger guard completely
  • Takes effort to mount and remove off the belt

What Recent Buyers Report

A lot of the new users were Glock owners in search of a holster that fit those pistols like a glove, along with excellent durability to boot. They certainly were happy with this holster. It was a perfect fit for a good number of users. One user even said his last holster didn’t feel so comfortable when worn on his hip. So he tried out a holster like this and kicked himself for wondering why he didn’t find something like this in the first place. It kept his pistol secure and didn’t slide out of position. 

Why It Stands Out To Us

The holster is made from genuine leather, which translates into excellent durability and longevity compared to some soft material holsters like nylon. It won’t snag and it certainly won’t slow you down on the draw. When timing is not on your side and your life depends on a quick draw, you’ll be looking for a holster that will handle your Glock easily and won’t fall apart on you. 

This G&G SOB Holster features a premium red leather body which has been formed and shaped to fit the Sig Sauer P-Series handguns. The genuine leather is of high-quality and easily breaks-in within several days.

The holster is quite comfortable, even when you sit or drive. The gold-line genuine leather will last long and so will the holster.

The minimalist design offers perfect concealment and the retention adjustment screw allows you to adjust the friction as you desire. It is perfect for all holster uses.

Who Would Use This Most?

This will be a holster that will be exclusive to those who own a Glock. Whether you own a 17, a 19, or a 43, it doesn’t matter. It will fit like a glove and give you a long time of faithful service. Yes, the Glock is a really reliable pistol. So you need a holster that will be equally reliable, as well. This is the holster that will rise to the challenge. The question is: will you accept?

Bottom Line

The Gould & Goodrich Gold Line Small of the Back Holster is something that no sane Glock owner would say no to. Especially when it can fit a whole lot of Glock pistols and provide users with excellent reliability and maximum concealability in the process. No one will even know you are carrying. So if discretion is what you need, this is the holster you’ll want. 

The G&G Holster features a top-of-the-class leather construction, which is very comfortable for your body and your weapon. The holster is easy to conceal and offers retention adjustment. The only drawback is that the trigger guard is slightly visible and to remove the holster, you have to take off your belt. Overall, it is a good holster for everyday carry and outings.

Tri-slot SOB/Pancake Combo Concealed Carry Freedom Holster - Fits Medium to Large Handguns- Glock 19, 23, 17, 22, Kimber Carry and Ultra-carry, Colt 1911, Beretta 92 and Similar Size Handguns

Pros

  • Fits most guns
  • Comfortable nylon body
  • Adjustable/removable thumb strap

Cons

  • Right-handed only
  • Nylon can wear out with time

What Recent Buyers Report

This was a hit with most users who owned various models of Ruger pistols. They were able to strap this to the small of their backs and holster this pistol without any discomfort or snagging whatsoever. Overall, the fitting of most pistols was perfect and allowed for quick access of drawing and re-holstering. So far, there was not a single complaint from these new users. 

Why it Stands Out to Us 

This holster is made from high-quality nylon, which has long been one of the most reliable materials for concealed carry holsters. This is no cheap and flimsy version. It stands the test of time and numerous amounts of drawing and re-holstering. So if you want something that will easily wear and tear, then you’ll be sorely disappointed that this holster won’t do that. This has a removable strap that will make it easier to adjust positions if you so choose. So if the small of your back isn’t the best carry position, you can switch it to something more comfortable. 

The Tri-Slot Holster can be used as an SOB or as a pancake holster. It offers a wide range of adjustments pertaining to the draw position and comfort. This holster fits most large to mid-sized handguns.

The holster is made up of nylon with a neoprene padding, which makes wearing it even more comfortable. It has screws to adjust the retention, and the three different belt loops allow the draw angle to be decided.

Who Will Use This Most 

If you are looking for a nice starter holster for small of the back position carrying, you may want to consider this as a possible option. It’s pretty solid in quality and will fit a good number of Ruger pistols (if that’s what you prefer). It allows for a snug fit and lasting quality as well. On top of that, it’s affordable for most budgets so it won’t break the bank. 

Bottom Line

The Tri-Slot SOB Concealed Carry Holster is good in quality and can handle a number of Ruger pistols with ease and will allow for a really comfortable carrying in the process. If you seriously want a holster that will be easy to conceal carry and be adjustable for whatever position is best for you, this might be the holster you’ll enjoy for the long-term or until you find a holster that’s the best fit for you.

The Tri-Holster houses most handguns and its nylon body is quite comfortable. The retention and the draw angle are adjustable. The thumb strap provides extra security with retention. It is easy on your skin and is also covered by a lifetime warranty.

Conclusion

A small of back holster is a good option to improve your efforts of concealment. A SOB holster must be comfortable and easy to draw for the user. Plus, the holster must provide proper retention for the weapon. A SOB holster can either be IWB or OWB, but eventually, it depends upon the preference of the user. 

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