Trying on a new pair of slacks or a new shirt? Chances are good, you’ll spend some quality time in the dressing room before going to the check-out counter. Rather than make umpteen gagillion returns to the Customer Service desk, it’s inevitable you’ll need to carry concealed into the dressing room.
Unlike going to the bathroom with your concealed carry handgun, a dressing room is arranged a bit different.
You may be completely disrobing or just switching out a single article. In either case, you’ll probably need to remove your concealed handgun and holster.
If you do, keep both of them together. Your concealed carry handgun inside a holster with high retention and a good trigger guard will be a safer package to drop off on a nearby bench. Lay them flat on the surface and away from any clothes or items which you may grab and inadvertently knock the gun off the bench.
PRO-TIP: When possible, make sure the barrel is pointed at a safe direction. This is a basic principle of firearm safety and it doesn’t go away in the dressing room.
- Secure the dressing room door.
- Remove your handgun and holster, keeping them together.
- Place the holster on the bench, facing away from other booths to your left and right.
- Make sure the clothes you’re going to try on are not wrapped up in your holster.
- Try on clothes as you normally would.
- Put your handgun and holster back inside your waistband.
- Account for all handgun equipment (magazines, gun, holster) that you entered the dressing room with prior to leaving.
It’s that easy.
Tips To Avoid Dressing Room Confusion
In dressing rooms where there is clearance beneath the door, try to keep your gun and holster above that line. What people don’t see, they can’t comment on or freak out about. Remember: people jump to conclusions WAY faster than they ought to. Keeping things out of sight can often mean keeping them out of mind as well.
And, as we mentioned before, always check to make sure you have your gun and holster properly secured on your person prior to departing the dressing room. The last thing you want to do is awkwardly return and pick up a loaded gun you left behind. You laugh but it’s happened.
If you feel the need to conceal your handgun and holster further than just putting them on the bench, lay a garment lightly over top. This will cover the handgun from anyone else knowing it’s there. This also ties back to the previous paragraph of ensuring you have all your equipment prior to departure. Ideally, use an article of clothing you wore into the dressing room to cover your handgun and holster. This will guarantee you walk out with both that garment and your concealed carry handgun.
The chances of you ever needing to use your concealed carry handgun in a dressing room are very slim. In the off chance someone has you targeted for an ambush and decides to burst in after you, well, you would have already been in a heap of trouble anyhow. The best bet is to acknowledge that while within a locked room, you will have at least some warning before someone else bursts through the door.
Carry everywhere and don’t leave your handgun in the dressing room.