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Best iPhone 11 cases 2022

The iPhone 11 is getting up there in age, but boy does it have a beautiful design. It comes in a wonderful variety of colors, and you're going to want to keep it going strong. Whether you prefer a clear case to show off your phone's true color, love leather luxury, or need a heavy-duty case to protect it in the field, these are some of the best iPhone 11 cases you can buy.

Come on, do I really need a case?

I have a friend who prides herself on not using a case, despite my advice to use one. This will come as no big surprise: she dropped it and shattered the screen and corners of her iPhone. When I worked at the Apple Store, I saw more cracked/damaged/dropped phones than I could count, and I was a product specialist (salesperson), not a technician (repair person).

But since you're here to hear my advice, it's this: Use a case for your iPhone 11. There are so many great options out there, there's really no excuse to say that you don't like cases. Even the thinnest, nearly invisible cases are better protection than none at all. I do still recommend getting AppleCare+ because some drops are going to do damage even with a case. But you'll still need to pay a deductible and take hours out of your day to get a repair done. So, a simple case could save you a lot of time and money.

Do I need to spend a lot on a decent case?

Absolutely not. I have various cases in a regular rotation since I like to match my case to my outfit. The prices of my favorite cases range from about $10 to $100. An inexpensive TPU case can protect as well as the most elegant top-grain leather, sometimes even better. It's the shape and construction of the case that matters more than price or materials. There are plenty of effective and yet cheap cases.

How can I tell if a case is protective enough?

A bulky, rugged, heavy-duty case is certainly going to be more protective than a thinner case. Whether you go heavy-duty or not, always look for case edges that come up higher than screen level, so if you set your iPhone face down on a table, the screen would not contact the table. You also want the back of the phone case to be thicker than the camera bump, or at least to have a raised lip to give your camera lenses some protection. It's nice to have some kind of textured grip on the edges of the case to help prevent drops in the first place. Some cases have open bottoms, but you'll want to bumper to extend all the way around the case if you want to prevent micro-scratches on the bezel. Reinforced corners are always a good idea since that area is so vulnerable to damage.

Will a barely-there case protect at all?

Barely-there is better than nothing at all, and there are some pretty effective thin cases. An ultra-thin case will definitely protect your iPhone from getting scratched. Maybe you'll get protection from very light/gentle drops. I dropped my iPhone in a barely-there case onto the pavement from waist height, and it did sustain enough damage that I had to get it repaired. If I'd been indoors and dropped onto the carpet, it might have been fine. But I can't recommend a barely-there case for drop protection.

Do I need a screen protector, too?

I absolutely recommend a good screen protector for your iPhone 11. If you don't have one on your iPhone, your screen will develop micro-scratches over time, even if you're quite careful and never crack your screen. A screen protector can also help keep your iPhone screen from cracking in a fall. When I worked at Apple, I saw several people coming in for a new screen protector because theirs had cracked in a drop... but the iPhone screen was still pristine underneath.

What type of case is best?

That's an entirely personal decision. A great heavy-duty case is obviously your best protection against gravity's will, but if you're like me, you really don't like a bulky case. I tend to choose a slim-to-medium case, but you do you. I'm not too picky about materials, I'm fine with TPU if the case is cute, but I also love luxurious leather.

Otherwise, it's all about the feature set you need. Do you plan to use wireless charging? Then don't choose a case with a ring, wallet, or PopSocket on the back. If you don't need to charge wirelessly, those features on the back can come in handy. Portfolio-style wallet cases are a convenient all-in-one solution if you don't want to carry a separate wallet. However, they are bulky, so a folio is not worthwhile if you don't need that feature.

Which one should you choose?

You can't go wrong with an iPhone case designed by Apple to pair with your device to perfection. The Apple Silicone Case is slim and fits the iPhone like a glove. The outside is smooth without being slippery; the inside is soft microfiber to prevent scratches. Plus it has that chic Apple logo on the back.

On the other hand, I do love the Otter + Pop Symmetry Series cases. You get a nice, protective case that isn't overly bulky. Wireless charging won't work consistently due to the PopSocket on the back, but that PopSocket makes an awfully convenient phone grip for selfies and kickstand for video-watching. The PopSocket is easy to swap out if you want to express different moods without changing up the case itself. OtterBox also makes some of our favorite heavy-duty cases for iPhone 11, and it's a brand we trust.