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The best smartphone case brands in 2023: the 20 best ones

Did you just spend three or even four figures on a new smartphone? You’ll probably be wanting to keep it pristine and safe from damage, and the best way to ensure that is with a good protective case. However, not every case is created equal. While you can pick up a generic gel case from anywhere for a few bucks, if you want real protection, you’re better off looking at some of the best case brands for a more expensive, but much more reliable smartphone case.

Phone cases aren’t just about protection, though. The best phone cases offer protection, sure, but they also boast stylish designs, kickstands, or even backpacks or wallets to hold credit cards or cash. But where should you be looking for your new case? We’ve got the lowdown on the best phone case brands out there right now, so you can zero in on the right case for you.

Caseology

Caseology Parallax Case in Aqua Green for the iPhone SE (2022) showing the 3D cube design.
Caseology

Who Caseology cases are for: Those looking for military-grade protection combined with quirky design.

Price range: Low to Medium

Caseology cases are designed to be simple, stylish, smart, and functional. As a brand, it’s constantly testing and improving its cases based on customer feedback and has earned a reputation as one of the leading brands in phone protection. Caseology cases are made from the highest quality materials, and the company follows strict material sourcing guidelines, utilizing innovative and efficient manufacturing processes to ensure its cases are affordable.

With features like patented air space technology for added corner protection and textured TPU grips, Caseology’s cases offer military-grade protection and a range of quirky designs to choose from, like the Escher-inspired Parallax or the colorful silicone NanoPop cases. Buy direct from Caseology, and you get free shipping and a 90-day warranty on all cases — you can even subscribe to the brand’s newsletter for 20% off your new case.

Caseology

Totallee

Totallee Super Thin Matte Case in Blue for iPhone 13 Pro showing off the hard plastic protection.
Totallee

Who Totallee cases are for: Minimalist design lovers who want the slimmest iPhone case around.

Price range: Medium

Totallee has one mission: To offer the best super-thin iPhone cases around. The company doesn’t make cases for Android phones, and its Super Thin iPhone case is barely there at just 0.31 inches to 0.33 inches thick, depending on whether you choose a clear or matte option.

Totallee was founded back in 2013 and today consists of a small team that’s served over 800,000 customers so far. The brand’s carefully designed, minimalist cases all come with a 30-day money-back guarantee and an impressive two-year warranty. You can feel good about purchasing from Totallee, too, as 1% of all sales goes to charities working to end homelessness. The company’s Super Thin iPhone cases come in a range of Matte Frosted colors in hard yet flexible plastic or transparent options in soft, grippy TPU, as well as a limited edition range of colors.

Totallee

Incipio

Incipio Organicore for iPhone 13 in cream, showing off the 100% compostable qualities of the case.
Incipio

Who Incipio cases are for: People who care about the environment and want excellent drop protection.

Price range: Medium

Incipio was founded in 1999 in a garage in Orange County, CA, with just $500. Fast forward to today, and the company is headquartered in Irvine, CA, producing some of the best protective cases around for iPhone and Android phones, AirPods, and tablets. Incipio does everything in-house, from design to lab testing and manufacture, and cases like its 100% biodegradable plant-based Organicore range ensure the brand is caring for the planet, too.

Incipio’s case ranges include Grip with its multidirectional Grip and the colorful Kate Spade New York clear cases with a wide range of designs available to choose from. Features include protective tech like Impact Struts for drop protection of up to 14 feet, depending on the case you choose, and antimicrobial defense. The brand also uses recycled packaging wherever possible.

Incipio

Ghostek

Ghostek Covert Case in Clear on the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra, showing off the R2X infused shock absorbing corners.
Ghostek

Who Ghostek cases are for: People who want military-grade protection with style.

Price range: Medium to high

Based in the historic Brooklyn Army Terminal in New York, Ghostek manufactures everything from smartphone cases to speakers and headphones. Regardless of the specific product, the common denominator is usually rugged durability, with the vast majority of its phone cases offering military-grade protection and shock resistance. At the same time, “sleek design” is another one of Ghostek’s main aims, so you can be sure your phone won’t end up looking like it has a plastic brick attached to it.

Many of the brand’s latest phone cases feature translucent backs and tastefully colored frames, so you can show off your phone while guarding it against serious damage. It also makes waterproof cases, in case you swim or dive with your phone.

Ghostek

Tech21

Tech21 iPhone 13 Pro Evo Art Case in Frozen River pattern with a blue and white design.
Tech21

Who Tech21 cases are for: People who want well-designed cases with significant extra features.

Price range: Medium to high

Tech21’s self-declared mission is to create “the most intelligent protection on the planet”. A lofty aim for sure, but one the American company largely realizes, thanks in no small part to the extra features it adds to its highly protective phone cases. For example, Tech21’s roster of covers currently includes the Evo range, which, in addition to providing 10ft drop protection, also includes bacterial and UV-light resistance.

The Eco range, meanwhile, is fully biodegradable, so you can rest assured that your accessory purchases won’t end up harming our environment. It also helps that the brand’s cases are very well-designed, with the company generally producing slimline cases that can be purchased in transparent, plain, or patterned color schemes.

Tech21

Urban Armor Gear

iPhone 11 Pro, front and back view, in a red and black metallic rugged Monarch case from Urban Armor Gear.
Urban Armor Gear

Who Urban Armor Gear cases are for: People who need the most rugged of rugged cases.

Price range: Medium to high

All of the brands featured in this article will do a good job of protecting your phone from everyday thrills and spills, but if you’re an outdoorsy type who needs to go that extra mile, then Urban Armor Gear (UAG) is probably the brand for you. While it does offer slimline transparent cases, its most well-known covers are like lightweight tanks for your phone. This includes UAG’s Monarch series of cases, which comprise five layers of protection and boast double military-grade protection. They may not be quite as elegant as other covers, but even with its bulkier models, UAG always offers sharp modernistic designs that will please plenty of tastes.

Mous

Mous Limitless 3.0 Case for the Galaxy S22 Plus in Walnut.
Mous

Who Mous cases are for: People who want beautifully crafted cases with solid drop protection.

Price range: High

Mous makes some of the most well-designed and attractive phone cases around. All of its models are slimline and lightweight, yet what sets the brand apart from most other manufacturers is that it offers cases in a variety of materials, from aramid fiber and leather to bamboo and walnut. Regardless of which you choose, these special materials give Mous’ products a level of sophistication and finesse that other cases lack.

On top of this, they remain highly protective, with most of the covers being built with more than one layer and featuring some kind of shock-resistance technology. These cases are also usually ROHS and REACH certified, meaning they’re free of a variety of potentially hazardous materials.

Mous

Spigen

Spigen Slim Armor Case in black on the Galaxy S22 Ultra, showing off the slim protection on offer.
Spigen

Who Spigen cases are for: People who want value without skimping on protection.

Price range: Low to medium

Spigen manufactures possibly the widest range of smartphone covers available today. Whether you’re looking for an affordable slimline case or a tough armor case, it almost certainly has you covered. While a selection of its products can be had for around $20 or a little under, even these provide shock-absorbent layers and grip-friendly materials, so you don’t have to worry about leaving your phone vulnerable.

The cases largely feature minimalistic designs that complement the forms of most phones, never being too gaudy or ostentatious. Most lack the kinds of premium features you might find with pricier brands, but at the same time, Spigen also makes several special covers, such as the Slim Armor Wallet series and cases with built-in kickstands.

OtterBox

Picture shows the Samsung Galaxy S20 phone, front and back view, in a black OtterBox Otter + Pop Symmetry Case
OtterBox

Who OtterBox cases are for: People who want comprehensive all-in-one cases.

Price range: High

OtterBox makes possibly the most comprehensive smartphone cases on the market today. While the vast majority of its covers are slimline and simply designed, it crams in an inordinately high number of features, from antimicrobial coatings and no-slip grips to 3x military-grade drop protection and wireless charging compatibility.

These products really are the Swiss army knives of the case world, a fact underlined most strongly by its Pop Symmetry series. These include a circular “PopGrip,” which attaches to the back of each case and can be extended, so you can hold your phone more firmly, stand it up while watching videos, or take steadier selfies.

Speck

Black Spec case for a Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra.
Speck

Who Speck cases are for: Butterfingers.

Price range: Medium to high

Speck is known for making some desirably chic cases that are lightweight yet supremely protective, but the most distinctive selling point of most of these cases is that they come with no-slip grip materials and surfaces. If you’re the type of person who drops their phone at least once or twice throughout its life, this means you should give Spec’s range of cases a look.

Generally, the high level of grip is provided by a combination of fine ridges and soft materials, which together help the case (and your phone) stick to your hand. However, Speck doesn’t rest only with grip since many of its products boast serious (e.g., 13-foot) drop protection, antimicrobial resistance, and air-cushion technology.

Ringke

The ringke Fusion-X case on a blank background.
Ringke

Who Ringke cases are for: Anyone who wants a strong case with a unique look.

Price range: Low to medium

Ringke used to be something of a controversial choice for cases, as it specialized in cases with a more, er, “unique” look. The Fusion-X case, as modeled above, is the poster child of Ringke’s range, and it’s plain to see it’s unlike anything else. More recent additions have retreated on that bold design a little, and the clear Fusion cases offer great protection, using a mix of soft and shock-absorbent TPU and harder, more resistant polycarbonate.

Ringke’s signature touch is found in the bottom corner of most of its cases — the QuikCatch lanyard attachment for wrist and shoulder straps to add an extra layer of protection for your phone. Drop protection ranks as military-grade, and with a low-to-medium price point, Ringke is an excellent choice for everyday protection.

Zagg

Zagg Gear4 Bridgetown Case in black for the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4.
Zagg

Who Zagg cases are for: Those who want to pair a strong case with an excellent screen protector.

Price range: Medium to high

Zagg is better known for its InvisibleShield screen protectors, but don’t let its case range slip by you. Zagg’s cases are strong and stylish, even if they command a higher price point than some people may be comfortable with. They’re worth the money, though; Zagg uses a material called D3O in its cases, and that pliable, flexible material is touted as the “world’s most advanced impact protection.”

Those aren’t just empty words either, as some of Zagg’s cases boast an incredible drop protection height of 16 feet (5 meters). Even with all that protection, all of Zagg’s cases are lightweight and don’t add a huge amount of bulk to your phone, while the sleek style also offers an additional grip for your fingers. Yes, the prices are high, but you get a lot for your money, and when paired with one of the excellent InvisibleShield screen protectors, you get a full protection package that’s as impressive as it is expensive.

Vaja

Vaja Leather Wallet Case for iPhone XS Max in tan and black leather.
Vaja

Who Vaja cases are for: People who want gorgeous, luxurious leather cases.

Price range: High to extremely high

Vaja specializes in leather cases. It’s not alone in this, as many other accessory makers do the same, but what sets Vaja apart is the sheer luxury and high level of quality on display. These are some of the most expensive cases you can buy, with some cases heading up toward the $400 mark. That’s a lot of Benjamins, but there’s a reason for that. Each Vaja case has been hand-rafted from some of the most premium leather you can buy, and each one will age gracefully, gaining a unique patina and continuing to protect your phone long after other cases would have been consigned to the bin.

These cases will be the envy of every eye no matter where you take them, and they come in a variety of styles to fit your needs. Need a wallet case, folio, top-flip, or just a leather back case? There’s one for you — that is, as long as you have the right device. Vaja’s range is on the more limited side, and you’ll struggle to find many cases outside of Apple’s iPhones, iPads, and Macbooks.

Moment

A Moment case on a blank background.
Moment

Who Moment cases are for: Photography lovers who want protection.

Price range: Medium to high

Modern smartphones have incredible cameras, and Moment’s cases are built to take full advantage of that. Each Moment case is protective in its own right, offering good grip and strong protection that guards against drops of up to 10 feet. But it’s the photography features that are Moment’s truly unique selling point.

Each Moment case supports Moment’s range of magnetic lenses, which clip on and offer telephoto zooms, fisheye lens effects, anamorphic effects, flares, and more. While collecting Moment’s cases and lenses is an expensive hobby for sure (a single lens can cost upwards of $100), they help take your smartphone’s photography and video capabilities to a whole new level — and could be an excellent investment for a budding filmmaker who wants to make shooting on iPhone their particular gimmick.

VRS Design

VRS Design Damda Glide Pro Case on the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE showing the hidden sliding wallet compartment with cards.
VRS Design

Who VRS Design cases are for: People who want to carry credit cards and cash, but don’t want a traditional wallet case.

Price range: Low to medium

Protective cases can add bulk to your phone, but few brands are as overt with it as VRS Design. In fairness to VRS, the additional bulk is for good reason, and it makes these cases great choices for those who want solid protection paired with a handy compartment for credit cards, tickets, and cash.

There are a number of different styles of backpack cases to pick from, from standard backpack compartments to those with additional kickstands and even all-in models with camera protection (which doubles as a kickstand) and a bag strap. VRS Design isn’t just about these backpack-style cases, though, and some phones have options for clear, thin cases to pick from that often also come with screen protectors.

Noreve

Noreve case on a blank background.
Noreve

Who Noreve cases are for: Someone who wants an extremely customizable leather case.

Price range: High to extremely high

Noreve is another leather case maker, but with a twist: Noreve offers one of the most customizable case services you’re likely to find. While you’re restricted to buying leather cases from Noreve, you’re free to choose from nine different types of leather (including PU and vegan options) and an even wider range of colors for each material. Once you’re done with that, you can add a kickstand, loop, card slots, text, images, engravings, wrist straps, necklaces, shoulder straps, and even gift wrap.

There’s an enormous range of options to pick from, and they’re perfect for anyone who wants their case to be truly theirs. But keep in mind all those additional choices will add to the case’s final price, and most start at $100, making these cases quite expensive indeed.

Poetic

Poetic Revolution Series Case for Google Pixel 7 front, back, and front covers.
Poetic

Who Poetic cases are for: Those wanting rugged protection at a relatively low price.

Price range: Low to medium

There’s definitely a market out there for rugged cases that look super-rugged, and Poetic has embraced that style with aplomb. Almost all of Poetic’s cases are unapologetically rugged, with big, thick edges and harsh, angular lines that evoke a sci-fi, militaristic style. That’s sure to put some people off, sure, but Poetic’s protection is worth ignoring the design for.

Most of its cases are strongly shock-resistant with a dual-layer construction that uses TPU and polycarbonate to provide good all-around protection against a variety of hazards. The price is excellent, but the additional bulk does block MagSafe on some iPhone cases, though wireless charging should work fine. It’s a great brand if you want a solid, rugged case on a budget.

Peel

The Peel case floating on another Peel case, perched precariously over a table edge.
Peel

Who Peel cases are for: Someone who would rather pretend they didn’t have a case.

Price range: Medium

From one extreme to another, Peel’s cases are designed to do one thing only — pretend you’re not using a case at all. These are some of the thinnest cases on the market — so thin they’re translucent – and most are color-matched to a phone range’s available colors, further ensuring it slips into the background. Peel even omits adding any of its own branding to cases, so a casual onlooker wouldn’t even know there was a case there.

As you might expect, this thin design doesn’t offer anywhere near as much protection as thicker cases and is largely only good against dings and scratches. It’s also expensive for what it offers. However, if you’d rather you weren’t using a case at all, but appreciate the idea of protection, Peel is a great middle-ground to explore.

Scooch

The Scooch Wingman case on a blank background.
Scooch

Who Scooch cases are for: Anyone who appreciates a handy, but subtle case.

Price range: Medium

Scooch doesn’t have a massive case range and is largely just known for its Wingman case. But it’s enough to land it on many of our best case lists, as the Wingman is a case you should know about. Broadly, it’s a protective clear case with great drop protection of up to 10 feet, textured sides, and elevated lips. But it’s the multi-use kickstand that’s most worth paying attention to.

It pops out to act as a vertical or horizontal kickstand, but also works well as a finger grip and can even be used to prop the phone into a car vent as an impromptu car stand. Don’t need the kickstand today? It pops off many models, so it doesn’t add that extra bulk onto the back of your phone.

Kerf

A Kerf case on a blank background.
Kerf

Who Kerf cases are for: Anyone who prefers the feel of wood over plastic.

Price range: Medium to extremely high

Wood isn’t the most common material for cases, as plastic is generally more flexible and lightweight, but you can get a rather unique wooden case from Kerf if you’re taken with the idea. The cheaper cases aren’t pure wood and are actually wooden panels added onto biopolymer frames made from wheat straw, but they’re still stunning and unique twists on the standard case format.

The pure wood cases are handcrafted from a single piece of wood and are absolutely stunning — though that choice does come with a much higher price. Opt for the Kerf Select Quilted Gabon Ebony Wood case, and you’re looking at dropping an incredible $1,200 on a case. There are much lower-priced options to pick from, though, as you can pay $59 for a pure wood case made from less premium wood.

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Mark Jansen is an avid follower of everything that beeps, bloops, or makes pretty lights. He has a degree in Ancient &…
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