Sometimes you just want a little bit of protection without a lot of bulk. The thin cases on this list aren’t going to provide much in the way of drop protection, but they will prevent scratches on your beautiful new iPhone XR. There’s always going to be a trade-off between bulk and protection.
An ultra thin choice
Peel Super Thin Case
A case this thin is only for careful users, not for major drop protection. It measures just 0.35mm and has no branding for the most “barely there” appearance. Peel’s cases are absolutely minimalist, though it does have a subtle lip around the camera to protect it.
$25 at Peel
Just a decal
Since this is literally just a decal, you can’t get any thinner than this. Drop protection, no, but a Slickwraps Skin will protect your iPhone XR from scratches. I like the retro skin pictured here but there are tons of colorful choices or you can customize your own with a favorite photo, logo, or other design.
$23 at Slickwraps
Nodus Shell Case II + Micro Dock
If you want luxurious, full grain, vegetable-tanned Italian leather without a lot of bulk, Nodus has you covered. It comes with a magnetic Micro Dock so you can mount your iPhone anywhere. It’s thin but not ultra-thin. Choose from Dark Teal, Ebony Black, Chestnut Brown, or Taupe Gray.
$66 at Nodus
Spigen Ultra Hybrid
The TPU bumper and durable PC back make this a protective hybrid case that won’t add a ton of bulk to your phone. It isn’t the thinnest option but it’s not terribly bulky, either. Spigen cases generally offer great quality for the price, so based on brand reputation, you can’t go wrong.
$14 at Amazon
Clear protective shell
This isn’t super thin, but it’s not too bulky. A dual-layer protective bumper and clear back shows off your phone while protecting it from drops. It meets MIL-SPEC (military) drop standards while still maintaining a pretty slim profile.
$25 at Amazon
Protective and grippy
Speck Presidio Grip
I particularly like this Starlit Purple with Gold Glitter/Cattleya Pink case, but it does come in other more sedate colors as well. Again, Speck’s cases are certainly not ultra-thin, but if you want serious (10-foot drop) protection without a ton of bulk, they are a great thinner option.
$45 at Amazon
Totallee Thin Case
Totallee’s cases are just 0.5mm thick but still have a camera lip. With zero branding, this case doesn’t distract from the iPhone. The clear glossy case, which is not quite as thin as the matte options, is a great for showing off the fun new iPhone XR colors.
$23 at Amazon
A simple option
This simple, black TPU case has a circular cut-out on the back to show the Apple Logo. It’s lightweight and thin but not ultra-thin, so it still provides light drop protection.
$12 at Amazon
SURPHY Silicone Case
Modeled after Apple’s iconic silicone case, this one is similarly thin and lined with microfiber. Since it is not an ultra-thin case, it will still offer some drop protection. I like that they put the branding on the inside of the case instead of printing it on the outside. It comes in a handful of appealing colors.
$13 at Amazon
Just a bumper
ESR Metal Bumper
One option to consider is to just get a bumper. It will leave the back of your phone completely exposed, so it won’t offer scratch protection. The metal bumper comes in Silver or Space Gray. Since it covers the vulnerable corners of your phone, it will offer some drop protection.
$14+ at Amazon
Case-Mate Barely There
It’s all in the name: this barely there leather case doesn’t add a lot of bulk, but it still protects your phone with a leather exterior and microfiber interior. A rectangular camera cutout gives this case a distinctive look. It comes in Black, Blush, and Cardinal.
$40 at Amazon
This cheap little thing is mostly clear with just a hint of metallic color around the bumper. At 1mm thick, it’s not the very thinnest but it will provide some drop protection with much bulk. A raised bezel around the camera provides some protection there. Choose from Red, Black, or Silver.
$10 at Amazon
As a general rule, the thinner the case, the less protective it’s going to be. If you want the sleekness of a thin case, you are definitely compromising on protection. The Speck cases, which are the thickest on this list, are certainly the most protective. The Slickwraps skin is exclusively for scratch protection; it wouldn’t give any drop protection at all. I personally use the clear glossy Totallee Thin Case on my own iPhone. I have dropped it a couple of times from either a low height or onto the carpet, and it’s been fine. However, I assume that if I drop it onto concrete from several feet, I’ll need to utilize that AppleCare+.
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