The iPhone 12 isn't the new kid on the block these days, but grabbing one of the best iPhone 12 cases is still a must if you're holding on to your older phone or you just picked up a new model as a discount.
Make the right choice from the best iPhone 12 cases on this list and you'll keep your precious phone scratch-free and safe from drops. Plus a case can help accessorize the phone so it looks more like yours.
Here are the best iPhone 12 cases we’ve come across, but don't forget that the best iPhone 12 Pro cases have their own list too. And if you've got a newer iPhone, consider our picks for the best iPhone 13 cases and best iPhone 14 cases.
Learn about what could be in store for the next iPhones by reading our iPhone 15 rumor round-up.
The best iPhone 12 cases you can buy
1. OtterBox Symmetry Series Clear Case for iPhone 12
Few cases protect better than one from OtterBox, and the Symmetry Series is a reliable classic that you'll wonder why you hadn't adopted sooner. This clear case also comes in versions with colored designs to show off the intricacies of your iPhone 12.
The Symmetry Series is made out of polycarbonate and synthetic rubber, with raised edges to protect your iPhone’s screen. The case is also compatible with wireless charging. Its DROP+ rating allows for three times as many drops as the military standard. Most importantly, Otterbox offers a limited lifetime warranty. If something happens to this particular case, you'll get to replace it with a new one without any hassle.
2. Razer Arctech Pro for iPhone 12
The Razer Arctech Pro for iPhone 12 is an attractive yet protective case that combines a number of different technologies. First, there’s an anti-bacterial coating for a case that's also drop-certified with Thermaphene cooling technology to help dissipate any heat your iPhone generates. That keeps you in the clear from overheating, as well as ensures your phone stays cool so it's comfortable to hold in one hand.
The Razer Arctech Pro’s reinforced side panels strengthen the case all while working with your iPhone 12 to ensure there's nothing impeding your phone's 5G connectivity. Plus, for Razer fans, the case is emblazoned with the brand's familiar black and green logo.
3. Incipio Slim for iPhone 12
Sometimes, slim protection is all you need. Incipio's lightweight Slim Case for iPhone 12 features a raised-edge bezel to protect your screen while offering up to 14 feet of drop protection.
The Slim is both scratch and discoloration resistant, and still thin enough to allow you to wirelessly charge your iPhone 12. The case’s antimicrobial surface claims to eliminate 99.9% of surface bacteria and germs as well, so you get added protection against the perils of everyday touching. Just maybe wash your hands after taking your phone into the bathroom.
There’s a clear version of the Slim Case, but if you want to show off your iPhone 12’s style, even the three color options — purple, blue and black — are translucent.
4. Bandolier Emma Pebble Leather Crossbody Bandolier for iPhone 12
Sometimes, the best phone cases do more than just tote around your handset — they’re great multitaskers. The Bandolier Emma Pebble Leather Crossbody case is crafted from classic leather with gold-tone details. It features a special crossbody strap that includes a snapback cover for easy access to your iPhone.
With the strap and bandolier-style design, this accessory essentially transforms a typical case into a small purse that's perfect for holding essentials like credit cards or receipts. It also looks great paired with a formal or casual outfit. No bag? No problem.
5. Catalyst Vibe Series for iPhone 12
The Catalyst Vibe Series for iPhone 12 is a serious contender when it comes to making sure your new phone is protected. This case comes packing a drop rating of 10 feet, and it's also customizable in a variety of ways.
Catalyst's four-point attachment system lets you strap, hang your phone, or clip the case onto whatever you wish. It also includes a lanyard attachment to make it even easier to carry. There's a mute switch that's simple to handle with a gloved hand too, which makes it a great choice for workers who spend a lot of time outside or in construction areas. Best of all, the Vibe Series is compatible with wireless charging so you can keep your iPhone topped off at all times.
6. Pelican Protector Series for iPhone 12
Reasons to buy
Reasons to avoid
Sometimes, utilitarian protection that's low-profile but dependable is exactly what you're looking for in an iPhone 12 case. If you want a tough exterior with 15-foot drop protection and added defense against germs with Micropel protection, the Pelican Protector is an excellent option all-around.
Because the Pelican Protector is dual-layered, you can feel confident that your new iPhone 12 will be safe, even if it clatters to the ground for the third or fourth time that day. A lifetime guarantee means you can always get a new case if something happens to the first one.
7. Mujjo Full Leather Wallet Case for iPhone 12
Mujjo's attractive full leather wallet case for iPhone 12 transforms your phone into a functional wallet. Not only does it protect your phone with style thanks to a vegetable-tanned leather exterior that ages over time to add its own patina.
There’s also the attached pouch on Mujjo’s case, which offers a simple way to carry all your essentials when you leave the house. The business-like air of this case makes it appropriate for using during fancy functions or just sliding in your pocket on your way to work. And at $44, it’s relatively affordable while making it look like you paid a lot more for your iPhone 12 accessory.
8. Smartish Gripmunk case for iPhone 12
We've all dropped our phones once or twice (or more, but who’s counting?). The Gripmunk case for iPhone 12 seeks to make sure you can get the best hold on your phone as is possible.
With a "super grippy" texture, this case is made to stay in your hands as long as possible. It features textured sides, a sleek design, and a bezel around the front to keep your phone's screen from touching any potentially compromising surfaces. But most importantly, the Smartish Gripmunk case is so low-profile, you may just forget it's there.
9. Case-Mate Soap Bubble for iPhone 12
Are you just not into the generic solid-colored phone cases that dominate retail outlets? Or are you on the lookout for something a little more unique? Case-Mate's Soap Bubble iPhone 12 case is the cure for the common case.
This lightweight case has an eye-catching iridescent swirl effect as well as 10-foot drop protection and MicroPel antimicrobial protection. The case in its entirety also fends off scratches and dings, so while you're enveloping your new phone in some seriously cool-looking designs, you can rest assured that your iPhone 12 will be in good hands. Plus, Case-Mate offers a lifetime warranty to cover any potential issues.
10. Totallee Super Thin iPhone 12 case
The Totallee Super Thin iPhone 12 case targets people who want to feel as though they're using nothing at all. The ultra-thin case features no branding, logos, or designs, and it's nearly weightless.
Totallee’s case fits snugly around your phone, with a raised lip around the camera. It works well with wireless charging to ensure you can connect your iPhone 12 to a charger and walk off for a bit. If you're someone who wants something low-profile but still extremely protective, you may soon find yourself a loyal Totallee customer.
11. Nomad Rugged Case
If you don't mind the heavy weight, Nomad's Rugged case will offer your iPhone a sophisticated air while keeping it safe from harm.
The former is achieved by the leather back, which comes in three different colors and ages beautifully as you handle it. Meanwhile TPE sides and lips make sure the front of the phone won't be in danger of scratching, and polycarbonate inner layer protects the iPhone from the shock of a drop. Apparently this case will keep your iPhone intact after a 10-foot drop, so says Nomad.
12. Native Union Clic Canvas
Combine the premium feel of a fabric case with the practicality of a plastic one with the Native Union Clic Canvas case. With raised edges, your display and rear cameras are safe from whatever surfaces you lay your phone on, while the textile portion gives an excellent feel to the case and a unique look.
This case is a practical choice too. It works with MagSafe accessories, adds little weight to the total mass of your phone, and the flexible materials mean it's easy to take on and off.
13. 15:21 Cork Case
You can wrap your iPhone with the same stuff you find on pinboards or on the top of wine bottles with this case. Other than feeling unlike any other case you're likely to handle, it's also biodegradable so you needn't feel guilty about disposing of it when it's past its best.
Unfortunately that soft case means it won't be as durable as many of the other options on our list, and therefore won't prevent as much damage to your iPhone. Fortunately 1521 have added a raised lip around the display so you can at least avoid the everyday scratches that can be caused by leaving your phone screen-side down.
14. Apple Silicone Case
Of all the cases produced by Apple itself, this silicone model is our favorite. It blends tactility with protection excellently, and comes in an impressive 15 colors, which should be plenty of choice for even the pickiest iPhone 12 owner.
On the inside of the case, Apple's installed a soft microfiber layer to cradle the phone, and also MagSafe-compatible magnets. That helps ensure any MagSafe accessories you may have still align themselves perfectly, just as Apple intended.
How to choose the best iPhone 12 case for you
When choosing the best iPhone 12 case, protecting your device should be at the front of your mind. You should always consider the kind of material your case is crafted out of, as well as its drop rating for those unplanned spills. The higher the drop rating, the better chances your phone will be protected if it falls to the pavement. If you're more worried about how your phone looks and prefer fun designs to heavy-duty materials, you can make do with lesser drop ratings, thinner phone cases, and even skins instead of cases if you want to skip them entirely.
Phone cases can and do vary in price. However, the amount of money you spend on a case is not directly related to its quality. You'll have to make the decision whether a case is worth purchasing to you personally. This applies to cases with awesome designs or those that are completely shockproof with high drop ratings. In the end, you need to figure out how much each of these cases is personally valuable, price aside.
One important aspect of the iPhone 12 is that you can use the same case you buy for that phone to house iPhone 12 Pro, as the phones are the same size. That way you can simply change out one case for another if you decide to upgrade or pick a different model in the future. You won’t be able to use these cases on an iPhone 12 mini or iPhone 12 Pro Max, as those are different dimensions.
If you opt for a transparent case, remember that you will need to keep it clean to stop it from 'yellowing'. Check out how to clean a clear phone case for guidance.
Are iPhone 12 cases worth it?
If you're a careful user who can guarantee you'll never drop your phone, then maybe a case is only worth it if you really like the design. For most people though, a case for the iPhone 12 is a cheap way to reduce or eliminate possible damage to your phone. Particularly when you account for possible repair costs.
What's the toughest iPhone 12 case?
Of our options here, the carbon-fiber Catalyst Vibe is the toughest case we can recommend. If that's not quite right for you, then we also like the Pelican Protector for its tough plastic shell.
Are iPhone 12 MagSafe cases worth it?
In short, they're certainly not necessary. The iPhone 12 series introduced MagSafe to the iPhone, which is a combination of fast wireless charger and magnetic aligning ring in the back of the phone. Unless your case is particularly thick, the magnets on your iPhone should still be effective, meaning additional magnets in the case won't be needed most of the time.
Of course, if you don't plan to use any MagSafe accessories, like a wireless charger or wallet, then you certainly don't need MagSafe in your case.
Will the iPhone 12 Pro fit an iPhone 12 case?
You'll have to look at our best iPhone 12 Pro cases page if you've got the iPhone 12 Pro. Its larger camera block, plus some other small body differences, mean it won't fit in an iPhone 12 case.