A Guide to the Best iPhone Cases

iPhone Case

A Guide to the Best iPhone Cases

Not every case has to be a big chunk of plastic that adds inches onto your svelte phone. These slim cases look sleek, are lightweight and still afford you decent protection.

A wooden case looks great, but it’s prone to nicking and splintering and may sustain water damage. Instead, opt for a case with a wood pattern inlaid into a hard plastic case.

Apple’s Clear Case

This clear case lets you show off your iPhone’s vibrant colored finish while providing extra protection. It’s made from optically clear polycarbonate and flexible materials for a snug fit over the buttons. Apple says it’s also optimized for long-term clarity and has anti-yellowing technology. It’s not as slim as some cases, but it has MagSafe built in and works with Qi wireless charging.

This is one of the only Apple-made cases for the new baseline iPhone. It’s a bit more expensive than other silicone cases, but it fits well and includes MagSafe so that your other MagSafe accessories can continue to work with magsafe ring holder the iPhone. It’s also a bit more protective than some of the other iPhone cases we’ve tried, with good defensive coverage around the camera bump and buttons and higher raised edges on the display.

It’s also a little more fingerprint-prone than some of the other cases we’ve tried, so you might want to keep a cleaning cloth handy. But it’s a great looking case and the best of the Apple-designed cases we’ve tested. Like every other Apple-designed product, it undergoes thousands of hours of testing and is designed to protect your phone from scratches and drops. The only downside is that it’s quite a bit more expensive than other cases in this price range.

Mujjo

Mujjo has been making a name for itself with smart-looking accessories that aren’t too expensive. Its latest effort for the iPhone 13 Pro Max is a leather case that wraps around to the front with a card holder inside and MagSafe compatibility. This case is made from what the company refers to as vegetable-tanned Ecco leather, which is rated for environmental standards and will develop a rich patina over time.

The leather is expertly wrapped around the case with no visible seams or stitching and precision cutouts for the camera hump, Ring/Silent switch and Lightning port. The raised ridge that surrounds the display isn’t a feature, but a design decision to help protect it when you place the phone face down on flat surfaces. There are also small lips that protect the cameras from bumps on the back of the iPhone when you place it in landscape mode.

The case is available in tan, black or a unique Olive green that adds a sophisticated look to the iPhone. It’s a bit on the stiff side to install and remove, but that helps it stay rigid enough to avoid any damage from accidental drops. The sides of the case near the button areas are softer and easier to grip too, which is a welcome change from some cases that have hard plastic edges.

Urban Armor Gear’s Monarch Case

If you like the rugged look of cases that are made to withstand heavy use and abuse, check out the Monarch Series case from UAG. This case meets military drop-test standards (MIL-STD 810G 516.6) and features a unique design that combines top grain leather with alloy metal hardware to create an aesthetic that will set your phone apart from the rest. The Monarch is also compatible with the Google Pixel Stand and has five layers of protection that make it feel feather-light in your hands.

If the Monarch Series isn’t your style, UAG has a more simplistic Civilian Series case that brings the rugged tech and protection they are known for in a less aggressive looking package. This is a five-layer case that includes their signature armor frame and shock-resistant core, layered with top-grain leather and a polycarbonate shear plate and metal hardware. This gives it a unique and masculine aesthetic that will definitely stand out.

Another unique feature of this case is its raised edges on the front side of the case that will protect your screen and camera bump from damage. It’s also designed with a traction grip for easy handling and button coverings that are soft enough to allow you to easily press and operate the buttons on your phone. The case also has a small lip on the rear that will raise your device to prevent it from sitting flat on a table or surface.

Pela

While there are many cases on the market that are eco-friendly, Pela is a brand that stands out from the competition in terms of sustainability. Its products magsafe ring holder are made from Flaxstic, a blend of plant-based biopolymers and flax shive (waste straw) that makes their cases soft, flexible, durable and protective for your phone. The company also produces airpods cases and SmartWatch bands that use the same materials.

Pela’s cases are fully compostable and free of BPA, cadmium, lead, soy, and phthalates. They will break down in your backyard compost in 6-months to 2-Years, leaving nothing but nutrient-rich soil. These are far quicker than the years it takes plastic cases to decompose, which can clog waterways and pollute the environment with dangerous residues.

The case I tested, the Blush Sister, is a soft blue-gray with an etched drawing of a mountain landscape on the back. It is a simple, yet elegant design that complements the iPhone’s aesthetic and does not overwhelm it. I dropped my phone from over 20 feet high, and it landed on the ground without any damage to the case or the screen.

Pela’s Case is easy to put on and remove, and doesn’t add much bulk or weight to your phone. Its minimalistic design is attractive and comfortable to hold in your hand, with precise cut-outs for the camera and buttons.

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