Phone cases are made from numerous materials such as plastic (Polycarbonate), synthetic leather, real leather or carbon fibre. The list can go on. Depending on what you require the case for, some materials are better than others and will provide better protection if your device is dropped. Others are scratch resistant or made for fashion and style.
We’ve made it easy to decide which is the best phone case material for you. Taking a look at the case materials below, you’ll get a better understanding of their strengths and weaknesses.
What are the different phone case materials?
With so many case materials to choose from, there is no ‘best’ phone case material, otherwise everyone would be using it. Put simply, every individual has their own favourite that they prefer.
Let’s take a closer look at the case material types below.
Plastic phone cases
This is probably the most common material for a phone case that you’ll find. Plastic, or polycarbonate (PC), is a tough and durable material that has a versatile use. It’s fantastic for phone cases as it’s easy to manufacture and great to use for molding under heat. Plastic phone cases are normally used for printing colourful and unique prints on.
Plastic phone cases are:
- More affordable than other materials
- Super easy to customise
- Lightweight and waterproof
Silicone phone cases
Silicone is a flexible, soft and rubbery material. It’s produced from silicon which is a naturally occurring material found in quartz and sand. Silicone is considered to a better and safer substitute to a plastic case. These cases can offer slightly more protection than a plastic case, as they appear bouncier if dropped. The impact is absorbed by the rubber of the silicone.
Silicone phone cases are:
- Available in numerous styles and colours
- Good for grip – they don’t easily slip from your hands
Synthetic and leather phone cases
These types of cases provide a nice texture. Available in a variety of colours and styles, synthetic or leather phone cases can either be a single layer phone case or include slots for credit cards. Wallet cases are generally made from synthetic materials or leather.
Synthetic and leather phone cases are:
- Easy and comfortable to hold
- Good for grip
- Fashionable, stylish and chic
Carbon fibre phone cases
Carbon fibre is extremely durable yet lightweight. It has a high tensile strength, stiffness and high-temperature tolerance. Because of its durability and traits, it’s even used for aircrafts and Formula One cars. Carbon fibre definitely has a more ultramodern look and is super strong, so it could be a good choice if you need a robust case.
Carbon fibre cases are:
- Extremely lightweight
- Highly durable
- Attractive in a futuristic way
- Quite expensive compared to other materials
Wooden phone cases
You might find some phone cases are made from wood, although it’s not as popular as other materials. The majority of wooden case producers use bamboo, which is a green material so they tend to be more eco-friendly.
Wooden phone cases are:
- Easy to hold
- Attractive – you can have custom designs easily etched into the back
- Highly customisable
- More sustainable that plastic and synthetic cases
- Not as protective as other materials
What is the best phone case material for protection?
Most of the time, phone case material choice is influenced on how it looks, the cost and its protection. If you’re looking to protect your device from scratches and impacts, carbon fibre is probably the best material.
If you are solely going for looks, then carbon fibre and wood are a good choice here. However, a plastic snap case looks good if it has a colourful or beautiful print on it that has been customised.
Some consumers want a case to feel nice in their hands when using it. Again, carbon fibre is a good choice but also a synthetic or leather case would work too. These types of case material offer good grip.
If you are looking for a case that is made to mitigate its impact on the environment, then a wooden case is the best choice. It’s more sustainable and eco-friendlier.