One of the great things about iPhones is that you can guarantee that there’ll be a wide range of cases made for them, and that’s especially true of the iPhone SE, as it also fits most iPhone 5 and iPhone 5S cases.
And now that it’s been available for a while the selection is stronger than ever, with everything from wood-backed weirdness to book-like wallets, battery cases and more.
As well as different materials and styles, these cases carry wildly differing prices too, so picking a definitive selection of the top cases is a tough job, but we’ve taken a stab at it.
Note: we’ve ranked these from cheapest to most expensive according to prices at time of writing.
You don’t need real leather to get a leather look, and this Olixar case comes in a lot cheaper than similarly styled rivals, thanks to its use of faux-leather.
It’s a convincing effect, and the wallet design means you also have slots for your cards and money, plus the case can be folded out into a stand for viewing media.
The slim, lightweight design won’t add unnecessary bulk to your iPhone SE, and the overall appearance is almost as good as the far pricier (and real leather) Twelve South BookBook, found further down this list.
Even if you want a premium material you don’t have to spend a fortune, as the Ghostek Cloak case proves.
Granted, the back is made of plastic, but there’s an aluminum bumper for a stylish and high-end finish, and the plastic part is transparent, so the metal of your iPhone SE can shine through.
The design is fairly slim too and there’s a screen protector bundled with the case, so you can give your phone all-round protection.
The great shame of cases is that they cover up a phone, that often, as in the iPhone SE’s case, has a premium design that you’d rather show off, but the Power Support Air Jacket does its best not to hide your device.
The case is incredibly slim at just 1.2mm thick, and it’s totally transparent, making it almost invisible. In fact, viewed at a distance you might not even realize the iPhone SE is in a case at all.
The downside to this minimalist design is that it doesn’t provide a huge amount of protection, but it should keep your phone safe from minor bumps and scratches.
The Carved Traveler series is a gorgeous selection of cases, made from real wood with artworks carved into them.
Both the material and the designs make them different to most other cases out there and they’re certainly eye-catching.
The rubber frame detracts from the look a little, but it adds extra drop protection and makes it easier to firmly grip the case, and the phone it’s protecting.
Don’t think your iPhone is colorful enough? It will be if you stick it in one of these cases. Speck’s CandyShell Inked case comes in three different designs, all of which are almost blindingly bright in color.
They won’t be for everyone, but if any of the designs appeal and you want to stand out in a crowd this is the case for you.
The case also offers a lot of protection, with shock absorbing and impact dispersing properties, which meet or exceed military drop test standards.
This slim case is a lot stronger than it looks, and that’s down to being made from Kevlar – a material with five times the strength of steel.
That means that even at just 0.7mm thick it still protects your phone, all without adding much weight or bulk and with a far more premium design than a plastic case. The case itself is also scratch resistant, so you’ll have to work hard to damage it.
If protection is your first, last and only priority then you can’t do much better than the Griffin Survivor All-Terrain.
This polycarbonate and silicone case is every bit as bulky as it looks in pictures, but it’s shatter-resistant, shock-absorbent, keeps dust and dirt out with hinged plugs, and of course it meets military drop test standards.
The size means it won’t comfortably fit in smaller pockets, but that needn’t be a problem as it also comes with a detachable heavy-duty clip, to attach the phone to your bag or belt.
The LuMee case is one of the more unusual ones we’ve come across, as along with protecting your phone thanks to a tough plastic casing, it also has a light built into the frame.
This can be used as a torch, or to light up your face for selfies, and it has a variable dimmer, so you can get exactly the right amount of light from it.
There are loads of wallet cases around, but the Twelve South BookBook stands out in two key ways. First, it’s made of real leather, for a truly premium look and feel.
Secondly, the case is designed to look like a book, with a cover design on the hinge. It’s an unusual but attractive design, and one which disguises your phone as a pocket book, putting off would-be thieves.
The leather is hand distressed, so each one looks unique, and like any good wallet case there are slots for cards and cash.
Battery life is one of the biggest problems faced by smartphones, and the Mophie Juice Pack Air aims to solve that, by building a battery into the case.
It’s cleverly designed, with the iPhone always draining the case’s battery first, and with a switch allowing you to choose between charging and standby, plus a four-light LED status indicator to tell you how much battery is left.
While somewhat chunky, the case is actually quite slim given that there’s a battery built in, and it promises to almost double the life of your phone.
- Now check out the best free iPhone apps