It may be tempting to think you don't need one of the best Galaxy S9 cases for your Galaxy S9 or S9 Plus any more. After all, these 2018 Samsung phones are a lot cheaper than when they debuted, since we're already up to the Galaxy S20 these days.
Still, phones can suffer damage when dropped — especially older phones like the S9 and S9 Plus. So investing in a great case is still a worthwhile way to protect your investment, even if you didn't spend much to get your phone. And if you're holding on to a Galaxy S9 you bought some ago, the right Galaxy S9 case can extend the life of your smartphone if you have designs on keeping that device around a little while longer.
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Best of all, you don't have to settle for a drab design with the best Galaxy S9 cases, which come in a variety of styles. You have your choice between elegant hues, iridescent frames and touch-friendly covers that really highlight the best qualities of the Galaxy S9.
Here's a look at some of the best cases you can get for the Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus.
What is the best Galaxy S9 case?
There's no one Galaxy S9 case that's better than all the rest. Really, the best Galaxy S9 case for your phone is the one that meets the criteria you have in mind for your smartphone accessory.
Worried about dropping your phone? Then get a case built out of sturdy materials like the X-Doria Defense Shield or one rated to survive lengthy drops like the Lifeproof Slam. A case that offers a lengthy warranty like the Tech21 Evo Max might also appeal to Galaxy S9 owners worried about their own butterfingers.
But to other Galaxy S9 owners who prize style over protection, the best Galaxy S9 case will be with more design flair. We'd suggest the Speck Presidio Grip in that case, though aesthetics can be a very personal choice.
Still other Galaxy S9 owners might want a case that serves other purposes as well. CoverOn's SecureCard series includes a space for cash or credit cards along with protection for your Galaxy S9, while Samsung's own S-View Flip Cover doubles as stand for the Galaxy S9 when it's time to watch videos.
The bottom line is, if you've got a specific wish list for a Galaxy S9 case, there's likely an accessory out there that can match it.
Best Galaxy S9 cases
X-Doria Defense Shield Case for Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus
All too often, rugged smartphone cases wind up looking boring and stale. The X-Doria Galaxy Defense Shield case for the Galaxy S9, which features a military-grade aluminum frame and is available with an iridescent frame, is no such case. For that reason, we think it's one of the best Galaxy S9 cases still available.
If the basic black version of the Galaxy Defense Shield doesn't strike your fancy, try either the Iridescent or Red options to add a little glamour to your Galaxy S9 or S9 Plus.
Olixar FlexiShield Samsung Galaxy S9 Gel Case
If you're looking for something affordable with modest protection, the Olixar FlexiShield Gel Case will fit the bill. The company says that this slim-fitting case is made from a durable gel material with a non-slip coating. The raised bezel on the case should also minimize scratches.
The FlexiShield Gel Case happens to be one of the most affordable Galaxy S9 cases on the market. But if its black design is too boring, check out the eye-grabbing blue and purple options.
Speck Presidio Grip + Glitter Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus Case
Speck offers a ton of Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus cases, and its Presidio Grip + Glitter case is one of the nicest available. Sold in a hue dubbed "Bella Pink With Gold Glitter/Dahlia Peach." This case offers a grippy ribbed design, two layers of casing for added protection and elegant shimmering crystals.
The case is also thin enough to support Qi wireless charging — a must to be considered one of the best Galaxy S9 cases.
CoverOn SecureCard Series for Galaxy S9
Mobile wallets are nice, but sometimes you still need to turn to actual plastic or cash to pay for something when you're out and about. CoverOn's SecureCard series fits the bill, with a slot for storing a credit card or cash; even better, there's a hinged security door over the slot, to lock your valuables out of view.
That card-holder door doubles a Kickstand when you want to watch a movie on your Galaxy S9's Infinity Display, and a blend of an inner TPU rubber layer and hard polycarbonate outer shell provides protection for your phone in an affordable package.
OtterBox S9 Defender
OtterBox has built its name on cases that offer complete protection for your phone, which is what it delivers for the Galaxy S9.
Not only do the S9 Defender's multiple layers safeguard you against shock, but the port covers on the phone's bottom edge to keep detritus and liquid away from your headphone jack. A holster clip allows you to attach the OtterBox S9 Defender to bags and belts.
Spigen Galaxy S9 Plus Case Pro Guard
Ultra-protective of your Galaxy S9? Spigen's Pro Guard case provides four layers to keep your smartphone extra safe and sound.
Fortunately, this Galaxy S9 case isn't bulky, as those levels of protection are trimmed to cut down on size, making it more pocket-friendly and ergonomic. The Pro Guard also comes in four designs, including a neat Army Green with bronze.
LifeProof's Slam is all about the drops, with one of the best Galaxy S9 cases designed to keep your phone safe after 6.5-foot drops.
You don't have to worry about covering up the S9's distinctive looks thanks to the $50 Slam's translucent design, and there's no protective screen standing between your fingers and your phone's touchscreen display.
LifeProof says the case is compatible with Qi charging bases, so you'll be able to charge your S9 without worrying about wires.
Samsung S9 S-View Flip Cover
Not only does the S-View case allow you to view data from your screen without opening the case, but the folding design of Samsung's offering eliminates the need for a kickstand dock. Also, some people (myself included) simply prefer to buy cases from the companies who make the smartphone we use.
Samsung offers its case in violet, blue or black, which should perfectly complement the Galaxy S9's own color options of Lilac Purple, Coral Blue or Midnight Black. If you managed to get a Sunrise Gold version of the S9, this may not be the best Galaxy S9 case for you, unless you find the black-and-gold combination to be striking.
Tech21 Evo Max
Tech21's Evo Max cases provide protection and style, and that makes this version one of the best Galaxy S9 cases. Not only are Tech21's cases rated for drops from up to 14 feet high, but they feature a neat pixel design and come in a variety of colors. (One of the colors is a seductive shade of maroon called Smokey Dahlia.)
Tech21's lifetime warranty makes this case even easier to consider for the Galaxy S9.
Mophie Juice Pack Battery case for the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus
Mophie's Juice Pack battery case for the Galaxy S9 packs a 2,070 mAh battery to complement the 3,000 mAH power pack inside Samsung's phone. Mophie claims this premium case will add an additional 29 hours of battery life to your phone, which would certainly top the best battery phone life we've seen from other devices.
Consider that both the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus lasted nearly 11 hours on our battery test (we make the phones surf the web continuously over LTE until they run out of juice), adding Mophie's Juice Pack would be ideal for Galaxy S9 owners who want to go a long time without having to recharge their phones.
Caseology Legion Series for Galaxy S9
Providing a good mix of protection and design, Caseology's Legion Series lets you keep your Galaxy S9 or S9 Plus safe without adding on too much bulk to the phone's slender frame.
The Legion case's TPU sleeve encircles the S9 while a PC shell absorbs the fallout from unexpected drops and dings. The ase also features a modest bumper around the edge to keep the S9's display from coming into contact with surfaces when you set your phone face-down.
Griffin Survivor Strong for Samsung Galaxy S9
Griffin's Survivor Strong cases come in clear and gray designs (with white or pink accents). The case's grippy, scuff-proof finish means it will be hard to ding, and even harder to accidentally drop. The case is also on the lighter side among the best Galaxy S9 cases, weighing less than 2 ounces.
Should your S9 slip out of your hands, though, the Survivor Strong case should protect it from damage. Griffin says an impact dispersal design can absorb the shocks of drops from up to 7 feet.
RhinoShield SolidSuit Samsung Galaxy S9 Case
This minimal case — a snap-on shell — sells in two configurations, and we recommend the model with the carbon-fiber finish.
Although we trust layered models a lot, the RhinoShield SolidSuit S9 case has an abrasion-resistant finish and offers protection against falls of up to 11 feet.
Galaxy S9 Plus MNML Case
"Bulky" is a dirty word for the best Galaxy S9 cases, but it's not an issue for the MNML Case, which is just 0.35 millimeters thin. Despite that thinness, MNML says its case can still protect your Galaxy S9 Plus from the occasional bump.
Minimalists will appreciate the fact that there's nary a logo to be found anywhere on this case. We also appreciate how the MNML Case's finish tries to keep fingerprint smudges at bay.
How to choose the best Galaxy S9 case for you
The most important step when you're shopping for a smartphone case is to make sure that it perfectly fits the smartphone you want to protect. That way, the case —and not the smartphone inside — will take the brunt of any unexpected drops or dings.
Case makers usually list the specific smartphone models their cases will fit. If you're looking for something that fits a Galaxy S9, only consider cases that specifically offer S9 compatibility. The same goes for the larger Galaxy S9 Plus. If a case maker doesn't specify which models a particular case supports, it's best to give that case a pass and choose something else.
If you're primarily concerned with protection, pay attention to whether a case maker posts any info on drop testing — that is, from how many feet the case can fall and still protect your phone. That number will at least give you some idea of how durable a Galaxy S9 case claims to be.
Even if you're not necessarily concerned with protection, make sure that the case leaves a little ridge around the front display of your phone. That can keep the Galaxy S9's screen from coming into direct contact with a surface, and possibly prevent cracks and other damage.
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Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.