What are the best rugged cases for the Google Pixel?

The Google Pixel is quite possibly the best phone of 2016. It's a beautifully designed phone (and rather expensive to boot). If you've got one, you'll want to make sure you keep it protected.

And therein lies the problem with any new phone — should you forgo a case and risk scratches and scuffs or keep it looking brand new with a rugged case? If you fall into the latter category, we've got some great options for you and your new phone.

Note: These are cases designed for the 5-inch Pixel, not the larger Pixel XL.

Spigen Rugged Armor

We trust the cases Spigen makes, and you should too. Spigen's durable Rugged Armor cases are typically among the best heavy duty cases you can buy for your phone. For their Pixel case, Spigen has gone an extra step in incorporating some of the unique design elements of the Pixel right into the case.

Along with the tough TPU providing edge-to-edge protection of scratches and scuffs and military-grade drop protection in the corners, the back of the case around the fingerprint scanner is designed to look like the iconic glass sheet on the top third of the Pixel. That way people in the know will recognize you're using a Pixel even when you've got it covered in a case. This is the only one-piece case on this list, so if you'd prefer the added protection of a two-piece design keep reading.

For protection that's stylin', Spigen's got what you need.

See at Amazon

OtterBox Commuter

OtterBox is another trusted name in phone cases, and their Commuter case for the Pixel is equal parts rugged and stylish.

This two-piece case features a rubber slipcover and a polycarbonate shell to offer superior protection for both drops and scratches. On the back, the case features a smart, ergonomically-designed channel to help your finger quickly find the fingerprint scanner.

Amazon provides your best deal on this case, but as of writing it is currently out of stock. If you're not patient enough to wait, you should be able to get one right away from OtterBox .

See at Amazon

YOUMAKER Rugged Belt Clip

If protection is your top priority, this option from YOUMAKER offers layers of full-body protection along with an included belt clip if that's your style.

With a thick TPU shell on the back, and a hard polycarbonate front plate featuring a built-in screen protector, this case is as rugged as they come. Clipped into the belt clip, your phone is fully protected from everything, making this a great option if you work on your feet and need the phone to be accessible and protected. Precise cutouts keep all the ports and buttons accessible, and the big loop around the fingerprint scanner makes it quick to find without looking. It's a great option for those looking for quality protection and features at a reasonable price.

See at Amazon

Wellci Hybrid Dual Layer Armor

Sometimes the best way to prevent your phone from suffering drop damage is to make it harder to drop. The first thing you'll notice about this case from Wellci is the pattern on the back of the polycarbonate shell, which helps to make this one of the grippier heavy duty cases you can get for your Pixel.

The shell works with the TPU slipcover to provide impact resistance and protection against scratches and scuffs. It's also the cheapest case on this list, making it a great frugal option if you're still looking for quality protection for your new Pixel.

See at Amazon

Lifeproof FRE

One of the glaring features omitted from the Pixel's design was waterproofing. Considering the latest iPhone and Samsung devices have included it, some were a little disappointed Google didn't match those specs with the Pixel.

A guide to waterproofing your Pixel

If the threat of water ruining your phone is a major concern for you, you'll want to get a Lifeproof case. Their cases are some of the best you can get if you're willing to spend top dollar to keep your phone protected. Currently, the Lifeproof FRE is not yet available for the Pixel, but you can learn about it and sign up for an email alert when it's ready to ship.

Learn more at Lifeproof

Protection or style: What do you prioritize?

Are you the type to buy a case as soon as you get a new phone? Or do you prefer to show it off in it's full splendor? Let us know in the comments!