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With Samsung’s brand constantly growing, so in turn do the options for cases to protect its flagship Galaxy lineup.
The Samsung Galaxy S9 is a phone that “gets it exactly right” as our reviewer wrote. But it’s a slippery phone, so beyond the aesthetic reasons to get a case, you should make sure it’s protected.
Since the Galaxy S9 is one of the most popular phones in the world, there are hundreds cases to choose from, with a range of styles, designs, and features. Which one is for you? Here are some we recommend, for nine different use cases (see what we did there?):
The Speck Presidio Grip is an old-school one-part case that slips easily on and off your phone. It’s light enough that you’ll forget you have a case, and it’s even compatible with wireless charging.
But don’t let its size fool you: This thing has extra padding in the corners (where your phone is most vulnerable) and a no-slip grip across the back.
This case has one of the best protection-per-square-inch ratios you’ll find. It’s not technically a two-part case in the way the Defender is, but it has a detachable polycarbonate bumper that absorbs shock around the corners and outer edges, as well as a rough textured grip on the back. It brings the durability of a larger case without all the bulk.
This case is gorgeous. It’s filled with moving pieces of glitter that float back and forth as you move or shake the phone, snowglobe-style. You can get it outfitted with red or silver confetti, or even pink hearts.
This is a sturdy case, but still a one-layer build, so it can’t take as much of a beating as some of the heavier-duty options. Still, think of how much cooler your phone will look than those of all your friends.
In a word, the Limitless series is classy. All of its models look tailor-made for a cocktail party or beach retreat. While many cases out there are designed to look like they’re made from wood, vinyl, or marble, Mous Limitless cases contain a number of genuine materials, including leather, bamboo, and walnut.
When it comes to protection, however, Limitless gets the job done. The case is lined with the company’s “Airshock” material, which the company claims absorbs the impact of drops via air pockets without adding much weight. The company says it can survive a 15-foot drop. The case adds only about 2.3 millimeters to your phone’s thickness, a far cry from larger options like the OtterBox Defender.
We were big fans of this case for iPhone, and we’re equally fond of its iteration for Galaxy S9. It’s outfitted with a pouch that fits three cards and cash (in case you’re one of the twelve people who still carry cash).
The case is decently durable, with air pockets in the corners to cushion some of the worst impacts. There’s a groove in the back that lets you prop your phone up with your card as a kickstand, so it’s great for binge-watching Netflix on the go. And rough patches on the sides make it easier to grip than your average wallet case.
This case is for survivors. It has a back compartment that holds a multitool that functions as a ruler, screwdriver, nail file, knife, and more. More urban folks can also put a card in. There’s also a super stable kickstand in the back that easily folds in and out. And at just over $20, the X-Ranger is a real bargain.
If you’re looking for real protection, you can’t do better than the OtterBox Defender.
The Defender is OtterBox’s flagship series, and with good reason. With a two-layer build, port covers, and an optional holster, you’re very unlikely to damage your phone when it’s in this case, even if you drop it multiple times per day.
On the downside, this case will always look clunky, and you’re unlikely to be able to fit your phone in your pocket. But hey, a massive, ugly phone is better than a broken phone.
This is a heavy-duty two-layer case with a built-in screen protector. It comes with port plugs to keep dust and dirt out of your charging port and headphone jack.
Ribs on the side help keep it in your hand, and it comes with a belt-clip holster so you can keep it on your belt (if you’re a loser). Best of all, unlike the Defender, it’s still thin enough to support wireless charging.
The versions of this case for S7 and S8 have received middling reviews, but Samsung seems to have pulled it together for the S9 iteration of its proprietary case. The S-View features a folio-style cover that allows you to swipe through your notifications and accept calls even when it’s closed. And when you fold it backwards, it makes an easy kickstand.