Our editors tested several phone-carrying cases to share our top picks for running.
Hold The Phone
Carrying a phone in your hand while running can affect your arm swing, get annoying or distract you from the views around you. We tested these seven phone-holding accessories on the run to see how they stacked up.
Most Dog-Friendly: DOOG Mini Stretch Belt, $20
This two-pocket belt features a small opening in the front pocket for easy accessibility to doggie bags—a handy feature if your pup is your favorite running buddy—and a back pocket that easily accommodates a phone and keys. The belt fits snugly without jostling, though testers were concerned that their sweat caused their phones to be in contact with some moisture through the thin Lycra material.
Most Lightweight Belt: SPIbelt Original, $20
The pocket on this simple-looking waist belt actually expands to hold a phone as large as an iPhone 6S (the brand offers a larger size that can accommodate any phone as well). It’s easy to adjust while on the move and keeps items secure with its zippered pocket. Some testers found it to be bounce-free while others experienced minimal bouncing. The zipper makes it not ideal for music listeners, unless you use Bluetooth headphones.
Most Storage Options: Nathan Zipster, $30
If you like to run with everything but the kitchen sink, this is the belt for you—you can carry it all and keep it organized in four pockets (two zippered, two fold-over). The zippered products have a waterproof lining to protect your phone from sweat/rain/spilled sports drink. Since the belt isn’t adjustable, ordering the correct size is critical to make sure it’s comfortable.
Most Visible: FlipBelt Reflective PT Belt, $33
We were pleasantly surprised by how well this belt stayed in place as well as the versatility of the “tubular” pockets, which are accessible through vertical slits around the whole belt. It features moisture-wicking fabric, 360-degree 3M reflectivity and an internal key hook.
Most Phone Accomodation: Sprigs Spin Art Armband, $24
The open-top design of this armband allows it to accommodate any size phone while still feeling comfortable and not slipping, thanks to small rubber grips on the inside of the band. The Velcro closure keeps your phone secure and provides easy music access, but the compact size doesn’t allow for much other secure storage.
Most Phone Accessibility: FuelBelt Tech Fuel Handheld, $15
This case allows you to have your hydration handy (literally) in addition to being able to check the time or switch songs on your phone easily. The handheld design is nice for those who don’t like wearing armbands or running belts, but the nozzle on the bottle can be a little finicky and the phone case only accommodates smaller phones.
Most Versatile: Locker Lifestyle Wrist Locker, $20
This colorful zippered product works both as an armband for running (available in three sizes) while safely stowing away your phone, ID and car key within the zippered pocket, or it works well in more casual settings when you don’t want to carry your purse. It can fit snugly high on the arm so that it won’t throw off your arm swing and makes it easier to plug in your headphones.