While others may fawn over the Galaxy Z Fold 3, the most alluring foldable of 2021 is the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3. As someone who has worn a shoulder holster for almost five years to accommodate ever-growing phone sizes that refuse to fit in my pants’ pockets, this is a phone I can actually fit all the way inside my front pocket. However, nothing will transform your splendid new phone into a splintered nightmare than a bad fall because it slipped out of your sweaty palms, so get a grip with the best Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 cases on the market today.
Ring around my heart
Samsung Ring Cover
Available in a wide variety of colors, this case keeps both halves connected via a durable woven strap, and at the end of its loop is a silver flat-edged ring so that you can use it as a ring grip. Given that PopSockets will be almost impossible to place properly on the Flip, this case gives you dependable grip as well as an easy way to pull it out of your pocket.
$40 at Samsung
Spigen Air Skin
This ultra-thin clear case won’t detract from your Z Flip 3’s beautiful colors while giving you scratch protection and avoiding bulk. I appreciate that the case dips down around the flashlight rather than making it a separate cutout, it helps avoid refractions in flash photos and should keep your whole case from glowing when the flashlight is on.
$25 at Amazon
Buckle up, kids
Samsung Strap Cover
This is one of the most flamboyant Samsung cases I’ve seen in years, but once you get past the initial confusion of “Why is there a seat belt on my case”, this case is surprisingly functional. Rather than emulating ring grips, this is a strap grip you can get all four fingers inside for a more stable grip. I can’t deny the allure of the Navy/Orange colorway, either.
$40 at Samsung
Hang on tight
Available in candy apple red and understated black, this heavy-duty case adds extra grip due to its uniquely bumpy bumper. There are also raised rubbed nibs on the back of the phone to help it stay in place while you have it sitting on a desk or table.
$70 at Incipio
Samsung Leather Cover
It wouldn’t be a Samsung flagship without a leather case option, and while the color selection here might feel slim compared to the keyring case, I’m very much digging the earth-tones here with the goldenrod yellow and deep forest green — which will match quite nicely with the Green Galaxy Watch 4.
$80 at Samsung
Kate Spade New York Protective Hardshell
This hard-shell clear case comes alive once you pair it with any of the Fold’s colorways. Pastel Hollyhock flowers pop, especially against the Lavender, Green, and Black Galaxy Z Flip 3, and this recycled plastic case is coated in an anti-microbial film.
$70 at Incipio
Can’t beat the classics
Spigen Tough Armor
The Tough Armor has been one of Samsung’s most popular cases for almost a decade because it’s affordable and durable. Given the difficulty of designing heavy-duty cases for this form factor, we’re glad to see it available for the Z Flip 3.
$36 at Amazon
Show it off
Osophter TPU Clear Case
This hybrid clear case ads a bit of impact absorption and scratch protection while still showing off whichever of the seven Galaxy Z Flip 3 colors you selected. The lip around the screen is very slim, but the lip around the camera module and the outer screen is more substantial. The only thing I’m not 100% sure of is how the flash might refract through the case while taking night shots.
$12 at Amazon
Leathery for less
Foluu PU Leather + PC Shell Case
If Samsung’s leather cases are too rich for your blood (especially after spending so much on the phone itself), Foluu has a two-tone pleather case you’ll love. This model relies on double-sided adhesive to help the case stay firmly attached to your phone, and the PU leather comes in three colors: black, yellow, and brown.
$10 at Amazon
Samsung’s Galaxy Z Flip 3 cases focus on function and fashion
Samsung’s first-party cases are the clear winners right now for anyone looking for a great-looking Galaxy Z Flip 3 case, as Samsung has perfectly tailored cases in a nice variety of styles. Thankfully, Samsung focused on more than just fit and fashionable color-matching with these cases, going outside the box for the strap case and ring cases to improve grip and make the Z Flip 3 a little more fun to have and to hold.
While these cases won’t win everyone over, I do still firmly believe that great phone grips are essential to a smartphone experience — especially for one-handed use. You’d normally center a phone grip near the center of the phone, but since the Z Flip 3 folds in half, that’s just not as practical here. However, the ring case still puts that grip dead center via the carry strap, and the wider seatbelt-type case allows you to grip securely across the bottom half in order to dial or type one-handed.
The Bold, the Subtle, and the Fashionably Late: Why Z Flip 3 Cases are hard to find right now
While the Galaxy Z Flip 3 is a more reasonable price than its predecessor — and definitely easier to swallow than the Z Fold 3’s final tab — this is still a phone that’s not mainstream, or at least not yet. Samsung thinks that the Z Flip 3 is going to do quite well — you don’t make a phone in 7 different colors if you’re not certain of success — and has offered up a bevy of cases focused around grip, style, and flexibility.
However, this form factor is still harder for accessory makers to design for and it’s potentially a small market if consumers don’t snap it up in droves. That means that while the big-name case makers like Spigen, Ringke, and Case-Mate will likely be making Galaxy Z Flip 3 cases, they might not arrive right away. Manufacturers might release one or two cases, see how they sell, and then release more.
So if you’re not super happy with the current case selection — though, really, what more do you need than Samsung’s ring case or strap case? — buy yourself some basic protection to tide you over until a wider selection arrives later this fall.