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The 12 best MacBook (2016) cases, covers, and sleeves

You may be tempted to keep your new MacBook naked, so you and everyone else around can gaze at it, but let common sense prevail. This is a gorgeous laptop that deserves to be well-protected. You’ve got to look after it, especially if you expect it to stay pretty. That’s why we’ve tracked down the best MacBook cases, covers, and sleeves. Whatever you need in terms of protection, style, function, or price tag – there’s something here for you.

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Pad & Quill Cartella Linen Case ($100)

Pad & Quill Cartella Linen Case

Fancy disguising your MacBook as an actual book? The Cartella Linen is designed to look like an old paper journal. Your MacBook sits in a wooden, Baltic Birch, cradle with cut-outs for the ports, and the cover can be folded back to create a comfortable angle for typing. There’s an elastic closure that’s practical and adds to the aesthetic. Inside the cover, you’ll also find a slim pocket for papers. The linen buckram cover comes in three different color combos, and each case is handmade in St. Paul, Minnesota.

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Pad & Quill

Moshi Muse Sleeve ($35+)

Moshi Muse Photo

This sleeve is a smart design that eschews zippers or Velcro in favor of a something that Moshi calls “SlipGrip.” You can turn it upside down and the MacBook still won’t fall out. Open the flap and you’ll find a soft, microfiber lining that cushions your device and cleans off smudges. There’s room for your MacBook to wear a close-fitting case and still slide in here. There’s also a pocket in the front that’s almost as deep as the main one. It proves handy storage for accessories and cables. It looks quite stylish finished in Sahara beige or graphite black, with the flap providing a color contrast in both cases. It’s ideal for stowing your MacBook quickly and sticking into a larger bag or backpack to carry.

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Amazon B&H

Inateck MacBook Sleeve ($14)

Inateck MP1500

Here’s a great option if you’re feeling the pinch after buying your MacBook. It’s a simple, unassuming felt pocket with a nice soft, flannel lining on the inside. There’s a Velcro closure to keep it closed and it’s not too snug. There’s also another large pocket when you open the flap, and it’s big enough for an iPad or a big book. On the back, you’ll find two smaller pockets which could be used for accessories or even your iPhone, though there’s no closure on them. This sleeve is great value for money, and it also comes with a strange little extra – a wee felt pocket with an elastic strap that’s just the right size for a mouse.

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Burkley Cover for Macbook ($90)

Burkley Cover

You’ll love the luxurious look, feel, and smell of this leather MacBook cover. It’s handmade and comes in two shades of brown, as well as black. The cover is really well-made, and flips open to reveal two elastic straps and a touchpad cut-out that’s designed to hold your MacBook firmly in place. The lining has a soft, suede feel, and there are vent holes cut into the spine to help prevent your laptop from overheating. Because this is essentially a leather folder, you might want to invest in a backpack or more traditional laptop bag as well. Still, there’s no denying that Burkley’s case is both stylish and protective.

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Waterfield Zip Brief MacBook Case ($180)

Waterfield Zip Brief

There’s no escaping the fact that this is an expensive option, but it could be ideal for about town and air travel. The zippers allow you to open it and lay it completely flat quickly, so it’s TSA-friendly. There’s a plush pocket inside that will fit a MacBook, even with a close-fitting case on it. Two additional interior pockets can be used for accessories. You’ll also find an easy-access pocket on the outside. It’s finished in waxed canvas or ballistic nylon, and you can order it in a variety of different color combos. To finish off, there’s a comfortable pair of hand straps and a removable shoulder strap for carrying.

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WaterField Designs

Booq Taipan Spacesuit 12 ($40)

Booq Taipan Spacesuit

Here’s an interesting-looking neoprene sleeve with a honeycomb structure that promises to safeguard your MacBook from damage. The interior is seriously plush, and there are two zippers that can open the sleeve all the way round so it can be laid flat. You can get this sleeve in gold, gray, or black. You get two removable leather zipper pullers to match the sleeve color, and three brightly colored contrasting extras you can use, if you prefer a splash of color. This will work well if you want a protective sleeve before you sling your MacBook into a backpack or bag.

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Amazon Booq

STM Dux Rugged Case ($58)

STM Dux Rugged MacBook Air 13" Case

STM’s Dux Rugged case provides a safe choice for even the most accident-prone consumer. The rubberized, poly-carbonate brackets protect the sides and corners of your laptop from falling damage, while the textured rubber feet help prevent your computer from sliding on slick surfaces. The transparent cover also allows stickers and customization to shine through, and the minimalist design ensures your MacBook can always breathe through the built-in hinge. The case is currently available in Black, Chili, or Moroccan Blue.

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Mosiso Leather-Style Book Cover ($22)

Mosiso Leather-Style Book 2

You might find this polyurethane case a practical solution. Your MacBook slips into a pocket, with a cut-out for the trackpad, and there are elastic straps at the top to hold the screen in place. It’s made from fake leather, finished in brown, gold, red, blue, or black. There’s a magnetic closure that seems pretty secure, and soft-padding on the inside. There’s also a clever wee fold out panel on the back that allows you to prop your MacBook at a comfortable angle. It’s not the greatest quality in the world, but that’s reflected in the price.

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ToughGuard Hard Case ($16)

ToughGuard Hard Case 2

These hard cases aren’t very expensive, and they clip onto the MacBook quite easily. They’ll keep scratches and dings from impacting on your laptop. You’ll find openings for all the ports, and there’s ventilation in the base to help prevent overheating. It also has feet on the bottom to elevate your MacBook when you place it on a flat surface and help prevent slipping. You can get this case in black, champagne gold, or clear. It is slightly translucent, so you’ll see the Apple logo and design shining through.

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Mobile Fun

Runetz Neoprene Sleeve ($19)

Bag 72

Here’s a basic neoprene sleeve that won’t break the bank. It has two zippers and can be opened and laid flat. There’s also a front pocket with a separate zipper that’s handy for accessories. It’s soft inside and has padded bumps to cushion your laptop from blows. You can pick this one up in a variety of different plain color combinations, or opt for the chevron pattern pictured. The fit is nice and snug.

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Amazon Runetz

Twelve South BookBook ($80)


For the most hardcore bibliophiles, Twelve South has created the BookBook, a case made of genuine leather that looks like — you guessed it — a book. With reinforced corners and a cushioned spine designed to absorb impacts, it’s a perfect blend of protection and class. Each BookBook is individually distressed so each case is unique, and for an extra $20, you can upgrade to the Rutledge edition. The latter comes with hand-dyed, “sunburst” designs on the outside.

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Amazon Twelve South

Thule Vectros Bumper Case ($45)

Thule Vectros

Clumsy Macbook owners will thank themselves for purchasing the Thule Vectros Bumper case. This bad boy will protect your computer from just about anything, as long as you don’t drop it off a roller coaster or throw it in a lake. The beveled edges and shock-absorbing ridges keep your laptop safe in the event that you drop it, and the invisible shields that snap between the edge casings will protect the top and bottom surfaces of your computer from unwanted scratches or, say, spilled coffee.

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This article was originally published on December 8, 2015, and updated on May 19, 2016, by Nick Hastings to include the Burkley Cover, Twelve South BookBook, and two other offerings.