Photo credit: PHLster Holsters

PHLster Holsters founder Jon Hauptman caused a splash on social media this past week when he announced his company’s latest product, the Enigma. Quick details from the press release itself:

Enigma isn’t a holster. Or a belt. Or a belly band. Or any other device you’ve encountered. It’s so different, in fact, it’s in a whole new category of its own. Enigma is the world’s first concealment chassis, giving you unparalleled concealment, stability, and performance. Using high tech materials, it turns your favorite Kydex holster into an ultra-low-profile concealment system that’s completely independent of your clothing.

Enigma’s chassis means you can train hard, fight hard, and live how you want, with confidence that your gun will stay put. Every part of Enigma was designed with performance in mind. Made from an ultra-light, high-strength woven polymer laminate, the heart of Enigma is the winged faceplate.  It stabilizes your gun while adding zero bulk to the front of the holster.

Train safely with Enigma’s secure retention and stable platform.  It stays in place during repeated draw/reholster cycles, thanks to its unobtrusive adjustable leg-leash.  And your kydex holster shell stays open, allowing for safe one-handed reholstering.

While it’s optimized for the PHLster Pro Series, Enigma is modular.  It will also fit other AIWB holsters that use a Modwing, Darkwing, Raven Concealment wing, or other IWB concealment wing with a 5/8ths on center hole spacing.

Enigma is unmatched in concealment and performance.

We’re all used to hearing advice like, “dress around the gun,” or, “get a better belt,” or, “try a smaller gun” when dealing with the challenges of concealed carry. Bellybands and other alternative carry methods don’t conceal well, aren’t secure, and require constant adjustment.

Enigma is a no-compromise concealed carry solution.  Its 12-point adjustable platform allows you to fine-tune concealment in ways that aren’t possible with conventional carry methods.  Once you adjust Enigma for optimum concealment on your unique frame, you simply set-it-and-forget it with the quick-latch Fidlock magnetic buckle.  Just click and go.

From the gym, to the team room, to the board room, Enigma stays put and stays with you.

* Compatible with non-light-bearing holsters which have a Modwing, Darkwing, RCS Vanguard wing, or other concealment claw/wing with a 5/8ths on center hole spacing below the trigger guard of the holster.

Photo credit: PHLster Holsters

Photo credit: PHLster Holsters

The frequency with which I’m asked by gun owners — new and seasoned alike — how they’re supposed to carry with their yoga pants, gym shorts, sweats, whatever, is staggering. Up until now there hasn’t been a product I was truly pleased with suggesting because the vast majority of belly bands, corset holsters, and other under-your-activewear type gear do not include quality holsters.

Cloth pockets, elastic loops, Velcro…all manner of flimsy attachments have been used by manufacturers in the name of simplifying carry. Finally, we have an option with a secure, safe, high-quality holster offering solid retention and placement.

Photo credit: PHLster Holsters

Curious about the Enigma’s roots? Another snippet from the press release:

Dive deep enough into high-level concealed carry and you’ll find Runcible Works. Known for their experimental and obsessively innovative holster systems, Runcible Works creates bespoke, self-contained concealment systems for carrying in any attire.  They combine high tech materials with sophisticated, ergonomic design principles to build deep concealment gear with the lowest possible signature.  Runcible Works pioneered the concept of building the belt, holster, and accessory carriers into a single platform that functions in any environment from yoga class to entangled ground-fighting and grappling.

After years of operating in the same circles, we reached out to Runcible Works to help bring their concepts and expertise out of the mad-science laboratory and to the masses.  Together, we developed a streamlined and minimalist execution of their renowned, yet often difficult to obtain, systems.

For two years, we explored materials, strategies, and executions, going back to the drawing board several times and starting from scratch. Enigma is the result of an intense and relentless collaborative process, the output of which is a unique and unprecedented piece of concealment technology and a patent pending.

With our final drafts in hand by the summer of 2020, we knew that the Enigma required a special manufacturing partnership. Known for their materials and process expertise and innovation in the tactical equipment space, AXL Advanced was the obvious choice to help us get over the finish line and make the Enigma a reality. Their capability to produce durable, low-profile equipment for hard use applications, using the advanced materials required makes them the ideal candidate for the job.

Photo credit: PHLster Holsters

As frequently as manufacturers launch “groundbreaking, innovative, game-changing” products that tend to be solutions to non-existent problems, it is a stellar moment to see someone come out with such a solid product. The Enigma truly is the answer to questions gun owners have asked for years.

Its fantastic design and functionality offer a reasonable method for carrying on your body even when your wardrobe lacks the means to handle a gun belt. Perhaps this will reduce the number of people flat-out not bothering to carry, and wouldn’t it be sweet if this drastically dropped the number of women who think purse carry is A Good Idea?

Over the years I’ve used different holsters made by PHLster and have always been pleased with their performance. 10/10 would recommend and have done so in multiple publications.

The Enigma is due to drop for public sale at the end of November with Hauptman teasing a possible Black Friday date for the first sales. MSRP is $95 and doesn’t include the holster itself, but you can buy one of the excellent PHLster Holsters on their website here. You can (and should) also watch their website for the official Engima product drop at the end of this week.

All right, let’s hear it. Thoughts?

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