It Keeps Getting Better. HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker Review

When I think of HoldFast Gear, I think of ultra-accessibility, comfort, and long-lasting and stylish gear. The company is beloved by wedding photographers and event photographers in the industry, and rightfully so. The HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker is a skinnier iteration of their original best-selling dual camera harness. Any fears of the thinner straps digging into my shoulders subsided after testing it out for several weeks. The leather is supple and molds around the contours of the shoulder. The harness has that added layer of convenience with which HoldFast Gear has become synonymous. Additionally, it’s incredibly comfortable for the most demanding of photoshoots.

Too Long Didn’t Read

HoldFast Gear has improved upon their already exemplary Skinny Money Maker strap. There is not much to complain about, seeing as how the company continues to improve upon their products with customer feedback. It’s comfortable, beautiful, and durable.

Pros and Cons of the HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker

Pros

  • High-quality leather
  • It’s a pretty timeless design
  • Stainless Steel hardware
  • The straps are very comfortable.
  • Can be integrated with the HoldFast Gear Quiver Lens bag for more accessibility
  • Weather-resistant

Cons

  • Not compact enough to fit in most camera bags
  • The leather can bleed.

Gear Used

We used the tan water buffalo leather HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker with the following gear:

Tech Specs

All technical specifications are from the original listing on the HoldFast Gear website.

  • Skinny Money Maker is 1” wide with 1-½” wide shoulder straps
  • Available in water buffalo and bridle leather
  • Metal hardware and D rings
  • Two HoldFasts
  • Small size: Height of 5’7” (170 cm) and below (if you are broad/built then size up)
  • Medium size: Height between 5’8”-6’2” (173 – 188 cm) (if you are slender then size down, broad or built size up)
  • Large size: Height of 6’3” (191 cm) and above OR wear extra-large clothing
  • Price: $230-$285

Ideally, you want the straps of the MM to fall about 4-5” below the arm pits. Optimum fit will ensure the most comfort long term. If the MoneyMaker is worn too loose it causes the cameras to swing and sway too much, which puts pressure on your lower back while at the same time the straps will tend to move and slip more.

When worn properly, the MoneyMaker will be anchored to the body and actually help to correct poor shooting posture by pulling your shoulders upright and back, keeping you and your cameras in line. So when the main straps are around 4” below the arm pit area, this in most cases will place the clip that attaches to the camera right around your waist line. So there should be a good amount of arm bend when your hand is on the camera at resting position and this is what you want!

Innovations

HoldFast Gear has expounded on the success of their original dual camera harness in this most recent iteration: the HoldFast Gear Skinny Man Maker. The straps are only 1” thick and do not dig into your shoulders, thanks to the comfort of the shoulder pads. The removable shoulder pads have foregone the additional stitching for cut-out slits. The result is smoother adjustments and a lack of stress on the sewn seams.

True to HoldFast Gear fashion, the vegan leather harness is adorned with three anchored D rings, safety clips, and two camera HoldFasts. The design also utilizes the new HoldFast Gear Quiver Lens bag for even more accessibility. The harness is available in three different sizes to accommodate nearly every body type.

It distributes the weight across the most substantial part of your back while removing stress from the neck. The result is one of the most comfortable options available that allow photographers to carry multiple cameras.

Ergonomics

The HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker harness is available in small, medium, and large. I am a 5’6” tall woman of very average size with broad shoulders. Because of this, I sized up to a medium and found it to fit quite well.

The straps are similar to a pair of suspenders that adjust like a belt. They cross in the back, which distributes weight across the strongest portion of your back. It simultaneously removes stress from the neck and allows photographers to carry three cameras for long durations comfortably.

The harness has three D rings that slide up and down for easier access. I used them primarily for securing my keys. At the end of a long day, it is comforting to know exactly where they are.

I attached a Leica M10-r and Fujifilm XT-4 to the straps with the HoldFasts via the tripod attachments. With a bit of effort, you can remove them by utilizing the latch system. It takes some practice which is by design. I preferred to position the cameras according to how often I use them and leave them.

Build Quality

HoldFast Gear is known for manufacturing reliable equipment and constantly improving it based on customer feedback. The tan water buffalo harness we reviewed is as durable as it is pretty on the eyes. They use very high-quality and full-grain leather. The strap is built to withstand the most demanding shooting environments.

There is a disclaimer on their website that states the color can bleed and stain light-colored clothing. I did not experience any color bleed during my time with the harness. I was afraid that the skinny straps might dig into my shoulders. But, the 1” straps are rounded off and were so comfortable when paired with the shoulder pad. They are weather-resistant, although the only moisture it experienced was sweat from the summer heat.

The HoldFasts and anchored D rings are made of stainless steel and feel substantial. They will not rust. And I like that they include safety straps for added security.

Ease of Use

The straps fit like a backpack, and it is similar to putting on a hoodie to get into them. It took about five minutes to establish the best fit.

Once the fit is established, secure your camera with the HoldFasts via the tripod mount. Then attach the safety clip to the lug on the left side of your camera. The strap I received to review was ready to be used directly out of the bag. There are installation instructions on the website if you encounter a strap where this isn’t the case.

After my cameras were attached, it took about ten minutes to get reacquainted with the HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker. It’s straightforward to use and develop a shooting rhythm. The ability to utilize the Quiver Lens bag allows for even more accessibility. Once you become acclimated to the feel of the straps, it becomes a seamless integration. The design will enable you to stay focused and present without the distraction of having to hunt for gear.

The one thing I do wish is that we could fold the straps a bit more to place in my camera bag. At the same time, I wouldn’t want to store them that way, even if possible, to preserve the leather. HoldFast Gear does include a carry pouch which does make it easier to transport and store.

Conclusions of the HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker

Likes

  • It’s super comfortable
  • The water buffalo leather is beautiful and durable
  • Attaches to their Quiver bag for added accessibility
  • Allows you to stay focused on the task at hand because you’re not searching for lenses
  • Carry bag for storage and portability

Dislikes

  • We would love to see it condense to a smaller, more portable size when not in use.
  • I wish the safety catch used the same leather as the straps for cohesiveness, and that’s being nitpicky.

HoldFast continues to make some of the best gear out there. It’s exciting to see a company that listens to its customer’s feedback as they continue to refine and improve their products. The HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker strap is beautiful, durable, and convenient. The design makes life easier for those high-volume shoots where time is money. Luckily, the strap is worth the price and is built to last.

We’re giving the HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker strap five out of five stars. Want one? Check out Amazon for more.

Brittany Smith

Brittany is a commercial fashion and portrait photographer working in Montana and NYC. When not behind a camera she can usually be found at a local artisan coffeeshop, writing for photography education sites and publications, teaching fitness classes, or baking something fabulous.