Some people think of clear cases for phones the way they think of vodka: they're supposed to be colorless, odorless, and all look and act the same. Clear cases are supposed to show off the phone inside and stay out of its way. But just as the impurities and textures of vodka brands can lead to differences in the drink and in the mouth, the details on our favorite clear cases don't just let your Samsung Galaxy Note 9's style show through; they make it shine like the jewel it is.
Shining scuff protection
Spigen's thin, flexible clear case grips well, hugs every curve of the Note 9's glass, and isn't as quick to show smudges and smears as other clear cases. The Glitter versions hide smudges and scuffs even better for $2 more, and the Rose Quartz Glitter's soft pink shine adds depth and cheer without feeling like a cliche.
This case reminds me of the jelly pens I was obsessed with in the 90s. It's still transparent but with a pink, sparkly casing. Not only is this glittery case strong enough to protect against drops and bumps, but it's also the perfect way to show off your Note 9 in style.
Get a handle on your clear case
Ringke's Fusion cases have been great cases for generations of Galaxy phones, and its well-tinted bumpers can go beyond with a color pop that can contrast or compliment the Note's original hues. The buffed-up corner bumpers provide a little more give to the case for dispersing momentum during a fall, and it comes with a wrist strap so you can keep your Note at arm's length at all times.
This budget-friendly clear case offers big corner cushions and a crystal clear back to showcase your Note's glass-and-metal glory. There's a cutout on the bottom corner for a strap like the Ringke, but it doesn't actually come with a strap, and while the power button is textured, the Bixby and volume buttons are not.
Dainty deco designs
Clear cases are supposed to let the Note's design show through, but adding a little extra flair never hurt anyone. Castetego has five printed case styles available — two floral designs and a darling mandala design in three color gradients — and these marvelous mandala variants add some contrast as well as some style while covering up the IMEI listed on the bottom of the phone's back.
Metallic hybrid beauty
This clear case marries a clear TPU inner layer with a shiny metallic polycarbonate frame to give you the best of both case worlds. The color-matched bumpers are perfectly matched to the Note 9's different shades — except for that teddy-bear brown that isn't available in most markets. Just be careful getting the protective film off of the case when it arrives.
Looking to split the difference between the thin style of the Liquid Crystal and the firm functional protection of the Neo Hybrid? Try the Ultra Hybrid S, which has a polycarbonate back and a flexible bumper that makes it easier to slide the phone in and out as needed. This S version of this case is higher-rated than the normal Ultra Hybrid and sports a kickstand.
Whitestone makes some of the best tempered-glass screen protectors on the market, and it should be no surprise that it makes excellent clear cases to use alongside those screen protectors. The clear cases are more budget-friendly than the screen protectors and sport a scratch-resistant coating on the smooth back.
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You obviously want to protect your smartphone from damage, but you don't always want to cover up the natural beauty of your phone either. That's where clear cases come in. They let you show off the look of your phone while still keeping it safe. Fortunately, there are plenty of beautiful, well-priced options out there for you to choose from.
It's hard to argue with the style and slim substance of the Spigen Liquid Crystal — especially that Rose Quartz Glitter version I've been loving to pieces on my Galaxy S9+ since last summer — but the Casetego's patterned poise shakes things up in a fun way while still showing off the Note's inner beauty.
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Ara Wagoner was a staff writer at Android Central. She themes phones and pokes YouTube Music with a stick. When she's not writing about cases, Chromebooks, or customization, she's wandering around Walt Disney World. If you see her without headphones, RUN. You can follow her on Twitter at @arawagco.