Good news everyone: Discreet Carry is a new sponsor of the Girls <3 Guns blog and the Girls <3 Guns Forum! I purchased a Cleavage Holster from their eBay store and they sent me an additional Cleavage Holster and a LadyBUG holster too! This week, Pepper over at Discreet Carry, said there will be another surprise in my mailbox from them. Wow. Here are the pictures of what I received when I received my Discreet Carry eBay order:
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Discreet Carry Online Presence:
Website: The Discreet Carry website is in its growing stages so there is some room for improvement. For example, to buy from them now, customers go to their page and are then referred to eBay or Gun Broker. I went the eBay route because I already had an account there. As a part of the online ordering process at eBay, I was sent over to the PayPal site to complete transactions. This meant I went through three different sites to get the holster ordered.
Another place for improvement is the text of the website. I found punctuation errors and sentence fragments. Now I’m not a grammar freak and I make my share of mistakes, but I am not selling anything. If I am going to send money through the mail or over the internet to a company, it helps me to feel more secure doing so when their site is as professional appearing as it can be, accepting that we’re all human and we all make mistakes.
Navigation buttons are not available on all of the pages on their site.
Now that we’ve covered the downsides of the Discreet Carry web page, let’s move on to the positives. Discreet Carry advocates for their company and products effectively on their site. With the available pictures and descriptive text, it is easy to get a feel for who the company is and what they do. I especially like that they take care to advertise the fact that their holsters are available in both right-handed and left-handed models. When shopping in shooting gear stores around town, I found many instances where only right-handed models were available on an otherwise awesome holster. I didn’t experience that disappointment when shopping at Discreet Carry. Instead, I felt welcomed, included and loved.
Another positive about the website is that they make sure we all know how much they care about how their holsters fit you. They care so much that they are willing to make custom orders. An example is in the item description for the LadyBUG holster. There they mention they will do custom orders for women who wear larger bras. This guarantees comfort and fit for women of all shapes and sizes. One big obstacle in making holsters for women is that we ALL are different. Discreet Carry knows that and instead of it being a limitation on their products, they work around it and turn it into a strength by offering customizations on their gear.
Email: Lending trust to contacting them with your personal email and your concerns is the fact that Discreet Carry has its own email address. They’re not using a Yahoo or Gmail account. They respond quickly and professionally to each and every email. I was very pleased in the detail of the responses and the willingness to find me a holster that works with my body and my firearms. I contacted Safe Shot with an email about buying a Marlin 795 from them and they responded with a canned, one-sentence answer and I took my business elsewhere. That won’t happen to people buying from Discreet Carry! I’m up in the teens in the number of emails we’ve passed back and forth. It’s great.
Social Networking: To recognize Discreet Carry for their customer service, willingness to customize holsters and work with buyers, I wanted to #FollowFriday them on Twitter, but they don’t have a Twitter. I couldn’t find them on Facebook either. I know Twitter and Facebook take up time, but they are free services and they are popular services. I think it would profit Discreet Carry greatly if they moved into the social networking world where many of their customers, such as myself, can be found.
Customer Service: Discreet Carry has awesome customer service via email. I was able to ask questions about holster fit with the particular carry gun I have and Pepper responded quickly with the answers. Additionally, they included a personalized, typed letter in with my order and it was signed, not copied! It’s great to be treated like a person and not a number by a company.
Later on in our email exchanges, I mentioned that I tend to shoot lefty, since I’m cross-eye dominant. I ordered a right-handed holster and the two free holsters Pepper mailed me with that order were also righty. Oops. My bad. I had never ordered a holster before. I’ve only bought one before in my life in a store and I had GB there helping me out. This time, I was on my own and I made a mistake. Pepper quickly emailed me back and offered to send me out a lefty holster. That’s amazing service. I made a mistake. It was my fault and still she offered to correct it.
Ease of ordering: Although I couldn’t purchase a holster directly from the Discreet Carry website and was shuffled back and forth amongst their site, eBay and PayPal, the process was easy and it went quickly and smoothly. I would like to see Discreet Carry offer on-site ordering, but to some customers the eBay and PayPal safeties will be an assurance. It was a happy thing for me to be able to read their 100% positive eBay feedback record.
Delivery Speed: FAST! I was impressed that I ordered and received the holsters all in the same week even though we’re halfway across the United States from each other and coming up on a 3-day holiday weekend. Good job!
Packaging: The cards were not yet printed for the Cleavage Holsters, but they came in a sturdy plastic Ziploc. I mean sturdy when I say sturdy. That’s some of the thickest plastic I’ve seen on a bag and it protected the holsters well in transit. The bag will also be a great place to store the holsters in when they’re between uses.
The LadyBUG holster had a product information card with one-sentence instructions, pictures, company information, disclaimer and warranty information. It also arrived in one of those sturdy Ziploc bags. I would have enjoyed more detailed and specific holster-wearing instructions. I am terribly new to the world of firearms and I need extra help. The simple instructions on the packaging probably won’t hamper experienced concealed carriers, but I had a hard time putting on the holster by myself. Extra email assistance was provided by Pepper.
[Side note: detailed instructions are available on the forum: http://www.forums.girlsheartguns.com/index.php?topic=83.0/ and http://www.forums.girlsheartguns.com/index.php?topic=82.0/.]
These packaged holsters were mailed inside of a Tyvek envelope, which protected it from the sometimes harsh environment of the USPS. Nothing about their packaging was cheap or flimsy. I’m very happy with the style in which my holsters arrived.
Looks: The holsters are unlike anything I’ve ever seen. Now, I’ve only seen the selection available at Scheel’s and Sportsman’s Warehouse, so I’m not a holster-seeing professional or anything, but I can’t get over how different these are than anything I’ve handled before. First, they are soft and flexible and made from a fabric that breathes. Mmmm. Soft. It’s not that spandexy, sports holster kind of material which is flexible, but which leaves a sticky, sweaty spot underneath the holster and against your skin.
Another soft selling point is that the Velcro portions are always not in contact with your skin and they’re attached to very stretchy elastic straps so that the fit of the holster works with you. Instead of gouging into your body, it moves with your body due to the soft fabric and the stretch of the anchoring points of the holster.
Second, they’re cute. They’re made of a cute color fabric and have wonderful finishing touches on them, such as the embroidered ladybug and flower trim along the holster tops.
Third, they’re sturdy. I don’t know much about sewing. I can’t tell you the names of stitches, but I can look at these holsters and tell you that they’re stitched very tightly and areas with extra pressure on them are stitched at least twice. For example, the bottom of the holster, where the weight of the barrel will press against the fabric is stitched twice. I expect these holster to stand up well to everyday use because they appear to be so well constructed.
Initial Verdict: I am very happy with the buying and delivery process of the Discreet Carry Cleavage and LadyBUG holsters and with the presentation of the holsters themselves. As I go about my week this week, I’ll be wearing them with different bras and shirts in different situations. From work, school and church to exercising and chasing after a classroom of 3-year olds, I will put these holsters to the test. I’ll let you know how they hold up!