What color Samsung Galaxy S21 should you buy?

Galaxy S21 Series Colors
Galaxy S21 Series Colors (Image credit: Samsung)

The Samsung Galaxy S21 is beautiful, distinct, and like the Galaxy S20 series that preceded it, has a small palette of colors to choose from depending on which size phone you get. The smallest of the three, the regular S21, has four colors, the S21+ has three, and the S21 Ultra only has two. This might over-simplify your choice depending on what size phone you're planning to pick up, but if you need help picking, I'm more than happy to oblige because some S21 colors are good, some S21 colors are bad, and others are just boring — and there's nothing worse than spending $1,000 on a boring phone.

Custom colors for the Galaxy S21, Galaxy S21+, and Galaxy S21 Ultra

What is the best color for the Galaxy S21?

Galaxy S21 Colors

Source: Samsung (Image credit: Source: Samsung)

The Samsung Galaxy S21 — I keep calling it the little one, the smaller one, but it's still a 6.2-inch screen — has the widest color selection, with four options and two actual colors alongside the monochromatic hues. The world needs more colorful phones, and it especially needs more breathtakingly beautiful purple phones in it, so I emphatically endorse the Phantom Violet Galaxy S21. The shade is absolutely perfect. It's not so deep that it clashes with everything, it's not as light as last year's Cloud Blue or Cloud Pink, and it's a nice neutral shade that can appeal to everyone without looking as traditionally feminine as the Phantom Pink.

Phantom Pink could've stood to be a few shades pinker — it's a little more orange than last year's Cloud Pink — but it's a nice option for the Rose Gold lover in your life. Phantom Gray is also a good option for users who prefer their phones not draw any attention to themselves. Phantom White could be fun in some situations, but you better get a great case if you want to keep that pearly white from showing every smudge and smidge of everything. While you're at it, grab a screen protector to keep that gorgeous display scratch free.

What is the best color for the Galaxy S21+?

Galaxy S21 Plus Colors

Source: Samsung (Image credit: Source: Samsung)

Like the regular S21, the S21+'s best colorway is also it's only technicolor, non-custom option. Phantom Violet is more vibrant and warm than the Phantom Silver or Phantom Black. That said, I do wish Phantom Violet had gotten the same bright silver camera module as the Phantom Silver. It also pops and it's a little more neutral than Rose Gold, for those of us who haven't been fawning over Rose Gold for the last decade.

If you are a rose gold fan, Phantom Gold is here for you as a custom color, but it's only available at Samsung.com and only in select countries. Custom colors also add up to 5 weeks to your delivery date, so even though the Phantom Red looks like the absolute reddest red ever once you stick it under a spotlight, I'm not sure how many people will wait and entire month just for a color you could easily get with a case, instead.

What is the best color for the Galaxy S21 Ultra?

Galaxy S21 Ultra Colors

Source: Samsung (Image credit: Source: Samsung)

The largest and S Pen-compatible S21 Ultra only has Phantom Silver and Phantom Black widely available, just like last year. There's a nice dichotomy between Phantom Silver and Phantom Black, but the Silver is more eye-catching and more universal. Unless you're part of the MATTE BLACK EVERYTHING crowd — and really, more power to you if you are — you'll likely be happier with the Phantom Silver over time.

If you absolutely need color in your S21 Ultra, you'll have to wait weeks for a custom color like the Phantom Navy and Phantom Brown, which offer subdued, sophisticated tones and carbon fiber accents to the camera module for extra depth. There's also a Phantom Titanium, which is a middle ground between the Silver and Black. These colors aren't available in all countries, are only available on Samsung's website and require additional wait time, so be aware if you set your heart on them.