Best iPhone Cases for Kids (Protective, Stylish, Child-Friendly)

If giving your child a phone wasn't already enough of a stressful decision, now you also have to figure out how to protect that expensive investment.

After all, it would be pointless for your child to attempt calling you on a broken phone, right? Not to mention replacements don't exactly grow on trees, and broken screens are more than just cosmetic inconveniences.

A case is an obvious solution — but how do you compromise between your need for security and your child's desire to have something cool and "in"?

Luckily, the market intersects at the perfect place to get you both style and protection with many different models and brands to choose from.

In this article, we'll help you identify what makes a great iPhone case for your kid, and point out the best ones along the way.

Quick Summary

  • Prefer classic over classy? The Otterbox Defender (for iPhone 7 & 8) continues to do its job as one of the best protective cases on the market is known for its drop-protection strength and sturdy plastic screen cover.
  • If bulk isn't the preferred method of protection, your child's phone will be just as protected by the Ultra Defender Slim-fit Case (for iPhone 7 Plus / iPhone 8 Plus), which slims down the design without skimping on the protection offered. There is no screen cover, but the beveled edges rise above the screen.
  • For those whose child is an adventurer who's sure to run into the mud, water drops, and dozens of obstacles along the way, LifeProof Waterproof Case (for iPhone 8) case has you covered from edge to edge and port to port.
  • Lastly, if you've bought your kid an iPhone X, he/she will surely like this cute lovely iPhone X case with 3D cartoon animals design, which is specifically made for the latest iPhone model.

Do You Ever Need to Get This for Your Kid?

Most likely, yes.

I know many of us adults don't use a case at all for our Apple products, be it an iPhone or MacBook. That's probably because we'd like to let others know we're using an iPhone or Mac with the shiny Apple logo. But for kids, design and brand may not be their top priority. Instead, it's protection and style.

You'll see below that we've rounded up some of the most protective but also stylish cases available on the market. They'll give peace of mind to the parents of clumsy kids and also please your child's eye for design with fun color combinations and patterns.

These cases are usually only held back by their bulk, so they'll work well for just about any situation and are recommended for all parents who are footing the bill on a delicate iPhone.

And even if you aren't a parent, the cases have the same protection value and we would recommend checking them out anyways to see if your current case could benefit from an upgrade.

iPhone Cases for Kids: What to Consider?

Phone Type

While you'd be hard-pressed to find someone still using an iPhone 4, there's still plenty of 5, 5C's, 6, 6 Plus and more in circulation. Each generation of iPhone tends to have a slightly different shape, so whether you've given your kid your leftovers from an upgrade or the iPhone X, you'll need to check to make sure your favorite case supports the phone type.

Body Protection

Most of the protection of the phone is going to revolve around encasing the back and sides in a combination of shock-resistant materials, but this can be hard to judge from an image. You should always check the product description for ratings such as drop tests to judge how strong a case is. You should also look for water and dust resistant cases that will often include covers for the ports such as the charger and audio jack.

Screen Protection

The most protective cases include a plastic cover over the screen that snaps onto the main body of the case. While you can always substitute with a tempered glass protector, the built-in ones have the advantage of adding strength to the overall case and being easily removable.

Style

While the importance of style varies from person to person, the market for cases is extremely wide and leaves you with plenty of options. Whether your child prefers red or blue, dots or solid colors, there is a variety of choices. And if they're still not satisfied, there's always the potential to add stickers and other decals to make it their own.

Best iPhone Cases for Kids in 2018: Top Picks

Kindly note: all the iPhone cases recommended below are our own opinions. They are hand-picked based on 1). the criteria listed above 2). our own personal using experience 3). reputation research we did, mostly gathering what other people say about the product.

1. Otterbox Defender (iPhone 7 & 8)

Some would argue that Otterbox is the original protective phone case. They've been making undeniably sturdy cases since day one, and the Defender model is a tried and true case. It has a protective front cover, shock-absorbent backing, and mixes plastic with rubber to create a sturdy design. Available for all iPhone 8 & iPhone 7 (NOT Plus) on the market.

What we like:

  • Many available colors and styles.
  • The sturdy design is built to last and protect your child's phone from the elements.
  • Plastic screen cover and multi-layer design.

What we dislike:

  • Can get bulky to keep in one's pocket.

2. Ultra Defender Slim-fit Case (iPhone 7 Plus / iPhone 8 Plus)

If your child can't stand bulky cases but you don't want to sacrifice for protection, this case provides the perfect compromise. Available in several colors, the slim case won't add much bulk to the phone but the bumper edges will keep the body and screen of the phone safe.

What we like:

  • Extremely slim design without sacrificing protection.
  • Edges of the case rise above the screen to protect during drops and falls.
  • Matte design is fingerprint-free for a clean finish.

What we dislike:

  • No plastic screen cover included.

3. LifeProof Waterproof Case (iPhone 8)

One of the best-known names on the protective case market, LifeProof cases boast protection at drops up to 2 meters and are water/snow proof. They're ideal for the active kid who takes their phone everywhere and doesn't necessarily notice that it's taking a beating along the way.

What we like:

  • Available in dozens of color combinations.
  • Models available for every iPhone currently on the market.
  • Waterproof and weatherproof.
  • It's with a high drop rating and catchy design.

What we dislike:

  • You'd be hard-pressed to complain about the quality of this case

4. Umiko iPhone X Case with 3D Cartoon Animal Design

This case is especially a teen girl's favorite, because of the cool cartoon design and special color, all make the phone in fashion. While the core value of the case is scratch protection, it also adds a number of other great functions that kids love.

What we like:

  • Sleek design with cartoon elements.
  • Quite a few colors to choose from.
  • It's lightweight and durable.

What we dislike:

  • The style may not be appealing to older kids.

Additional Tips and Tricks

Protection doesn't just have to be physical. When buying an iPhone for your child, make sure to check out the AppleCare policies that offer insurance against unwanted accidents. The package is also great for getting technical support.

Since the phone is for your child, you'll probably also want to make sure its age-appropriate accessible. This means enabling parental controls and other protective features that can lock down things such as the app store or certain websites.

For Apple's official guide to using parental controls, you can click here to learn more. You can also see this article from CNET that has some helpful tips and tricks.

Conclusion

As more and more kids come to school with iPhones, there are more and more parents behind the scenes fretting that the screen is going to come home with a spiderweb of fractures or that the device will be showing off battle scars in the form of dents and scratches.

Fortunately, a good case can help keep the trade-in or resell value of your child's phone high and there are plenty available to choose from.

Do you have a favorite protective case that you or your child uses? Tell us about it in the comments below!

Influenced by the startup culture in the Silicon Valley, Jessica loves building things from zero to one and is keen on following news related to the Big Five tech giants and many SaaS startups.

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