If I were you, I see you're in Gig Harbor, I would pop across the bridge to LEED on 6th st. I think they have one of, if not the best, selection of holsters on the shelf in the area (someone correct me if I am wrong I have yet to find the selection they have anywhere else). I am not sure if you can take your XD in with you unloaded to try in different holsters, but you could go in without it and ask first, if they allow it just make sure to take it in to them in the case and not in your hand. I have never needed to take my pistol in with me there, so I don't know their policy on that. Going to a brick and mortar store will allow you to put hands on different holsters and get an idea of what you are looking for and they are really helpful there. They have a sign that says LE ONLY on the door, but I shop there quite often and I am not LE, just can't buy LE ONLY items or firearms from them. Never had any problems buying anything else there.
The 4 Important things to really look at are:
1. How much retention do you want, and how? None, lvl2, lvl3? Thumb snap, release trigger (SERPA/ALS/??)
2. How much are you looking/willing to spend? Holsters can go from $10 to $1000 and everything in between...
3. How you intend on carrying? OC, CC IWB/OWB, belt slide/paddle
4. What material do you prefer? Leather/Kydex/Nylon/Foam/??
Opening up the proverbial can of worms on holsters can be a lot of information, and much of it will be personal preference. My every day carry holster is a Blackhawk SERPA with the paddle and some custom adjustments I have made to it. For me its the best holster out there, its rugged, durable, easy to draw from and gives me retention I want for OC. If I go out wearing slacks and a nice shirt or sweater, I have a Bianchi 83 paddle holster, its black leather, and has retention and is a nice looking "dressier" holster that also can be adjusted to almost any angle so it can go SOB or on my hip. I prefer a paddle for most of my daily carry so I can quickly take it off and put it back on if needed. For wearing a suit and going out somewhere formal, I will go with my shoulder holster which is a Fobus nylon shoulder rig. I will also use my shoulder rig if I am going to be outside for long periods of time in the cold where I want my jacket zipped closed, which to me, interferes with getting to a concealed waistband holster. If I want deep concealment I go with my Galco Skyops IWB tuck-able holster. And I also carry in a ankle holster if I am looking for deep concealment, or know I will be sitting for a long time where an ankle holster, for me, is easier to get to.
Don't really mean to overload you. Just like to give all the info and not just tell you what you should go and get, because you might not like the same holster that I do... Oh and the #1 rule, no matter what you choose is to practice, practice, practice! Know how to use your holster!
I will put my plug in for Blackhawk's SERPA though... Best all around holster (In my opinion) if you don't mind kydex (essentially plastic).
I carry a XD45 in a Blackhawk Serpa CQC holster myself. I am really a fan of the serpa retention system. They lock in rock solid, I have no doubts about it coming out. And they release with ease when I want it to. But that is just personal preference, I know there are some people on here that hate the serpa retention system because if for some reason somethink did happen to slide through the tiny little crack and get lodged behind the release button you would have to cut it out. Oh and cause of the person (who admitted total responsibility for the incident) had a ND when not correctly drawing from his serpa.
Sonoma County - Peoples Republic of Chi....er....California
I personally don't trust the Serpa for anything other than range carry or static mounted retention use.
Don't get me wrong, I like the concept and ease of use, but they just make me too nervous for normal or recreational carry. Just over the last two years, I have had two military colleges get the button on the Serpa stuck, one with a stick while hiking through thick woods, and another with a pull over fleece that had draw cords at the right and left sides. Both had to remove the entire holster and use tools to get the button free of the obstruction, and I have read too many similar reviews.
What I DO like are Crossbreed IWB holsters and pancake or minimalist OWB holsters. Passive retention in most cases is fine for me, but if I am going to be someplace where there will be crowds and I plan to OC, I will use an OWB pancake with thumb break.
For outdoor recreation, I use a Safepacker from Wilderness Tactical.
Thank you for all the info did some looking and although I like the consep behind the black hawk the issues with the holster give me pause for one it seams that they don't fit the xdm with out some modification nothing major but still modification then ther is the issue with the button getting jammed.
I think I am going to pick up a paddle holster of some kind for open carry and a shoulder rig for when I have to where a sport jacket
Thank you for all the information was very helpful as sone as I get back in town I am going to hit that store in Tacoma and take a look