Rokform Crystal Case Review – Phone Protector for Trail Runners


All opinions are our own and never influenced by brands. If you buy through links, we may earn a commission.

Trail running is a demanding sport that requires us to wear and use the most durable gear available, as such we thoroughly test and review trail products daily so that our final recommendations to you, our readers are accurate and trustworthy. Phone protectors like the Rokform Crystal Case are no exception, especially when you consider that a mobile phone:

  1. could potentially be your lifeline while out running should an unexpected emergency happen in the mountains.
  2. is probably the most expensive accessory you carry while running, and also the most fragile item that isn’t built for the demands of trail runners.

We at Trail & Kale recognize the importance of protecting our phones while in the mountains, and as such, have chosen Rokform to be our phone-protector partners. Rokform is the only company to provide high-quality, durable, functional, and affordable protective phone cases. Rokform’s Crystal Case meets all our criteria to be the best phone case for trail running. All opinions in this review are my own.

Rokform Crystal Case review Trail Kale web wm 2

The durability of Rokform’s Crystal Case

For us runners, a phone case needs to be able to withstand the endless rugged trails we love to run on, and also the ever-changing weather patterns that the mountains like to surprise us with. The Crystal Case is one of Rokform’s thinnest but also most protective cases, constructed of high-impact polycarbonate armor with reinforced corners designed to absorb shocks and drops. This design provides a dual layer of protection that exceeds military drop-test standards MIL-STD 801G-516.6. It was created with active people in mind and is our choice for trail running, outdoor adventures and everyday lifestyle. It’s also worth noting how fast and easy the case is to put on and take back off as some cases can be a nightmare to remove.

Tempered Glass Screen Protector

The Crystal case doesn’t come with a screen protector but you can buy a tempered glass screen protector if you want to ensure your screen remains scratch-free. Rokform’s screen shields are easy to apply and combine clarity with protection.

alastair running in Bend Oregon with Rokform Crystal Case in Hydration Vest pocket trail and kale
Me running in Bend Oregon with my Rokform Crystal Case stashed in the side-rear pocket of my Hydration Vest

Importance of a lightweight phone case for running

When it comes to trail and ultra running, bulky and heavy cases are a no go, for two reasons. 1.) If your phone case is bulky then it likely won’t fit into the designated phone pockets of your hydration vest, shorts, running belt, or running armband. 2.) If your phone is excessively heavy due to a big phone case then you’re going to be carrying all that unwanted weight around with you for hours at a time, while out in the mountains. The Rokform Crystal Case is thin and light and definitely doesn’t weigh me down during ultramarathons.

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Is the Rokform Crystal Case waterproof?

The Crystal Case isn’t waterproof but water protection is no longer as much of a concern for most as it used to be because new mobile phones come with a certain level of water resistance built-in. For example, the new Apple iPhone XS (the phone I use) has an IP68 rating, which means it can be submerged in 2 meters of water for up to 30 mins, so you should be ok if your phone’s exposure to water is less than this. Other phones with the IP68 rating include the Samsung Galaxy S10 and Google’s Pixel 3.

It’s likely that you’ll get stuck in a torrential downpour in the mountains at some point during your trail running adventures, if this happens, I would recommend you keep your phone in a water-sealed pocket to minimize the risk of water damage.

Rokform Crystal Case review Trail Kale web wm 3

Benefits of not having a fully enclosed waterproof phone case

There’s actually a pretty major downside to having a fully enclosed, waterproof phone case anyway. Trail runners and hikers who enjoy using their phone to take photos of the beautiful trails they get to run/hike on will notice an extra layer of plastic in front of the phone’s camera lens. This layer of transparent plastic in a fully waterproof phone case will soften/blur/smear your final image. What a shame it is when you get home to realize that all your photo’s look rubbish! Been there, done that, doh!

It’s also worth mentioning that if you do take your phone out while running for photos, then this is another reason to protect your phone while running, as it’s very easy to drop your it while on the move, I’ve done that too!

alastair using the Rokform Crystal Case magnetic feature to take a trail selfie trail and kale
Me using the Rokform Crystal Case magnetic feature to take a trail selfie 🙂

Built-in magnetic technology

I didn’t realize how useful having a magnet on the back of your phone could be until I started using the Rokform Crystal Case. Some uses that I have found for this magnetic function so far include:

  • Easily attaching my phone to my car’s air vent for GPS Navigation using Rokform’s Super grip phone vent mount.
  • Snapping my phone to the kitchen fridge for following recipes and setting timers
  • Sticking it to metal poles on trails/trailheads to take a running selfie using my phone’s shutter timer mode!
  • Snapping my magnetic wireless Jaybird Tarah Pro headphones to the case so that I don’t lose them, video example on my Instagram Stories HERE.

The video below from Rokform shows a drop test, and some uses of the magnetic features, including using the small car mount accessory for GPS Navigation which I use all the time, so handy!

Will the magnet affect my phone?

No, Rokform uses specially designed rare earth magnets that are proven safe for all smartphones and tablets. In a product overview from MacWorld, they said: “magnet based accessories are safe to use on iPads and pose no threat of scrambling interior electronics.” Rokform’s magnets will not harm your credit cards either. The magnet also has no effect on the phone signal, GPS, Bluetooth or Wi-Fi.

One thing to note is that with the magnet installed (you can easily remove it entirely from the case if you don’t want it on there) it may affect wireless charging.

Twist-Lock Mounting System

There’s another way to connect your Rokform case to a variety of accessories if you need your phone to be absolutely secure and locked in place, like when you’re mountain biking or motorcycling for example.

Rokform Crystal Case review Trail Kale web wm 9
The case has extra-large openings for your charger port or speaker ports, making it easy to use and listen to your favorite tunes

How much does the Rokform Crystal Case Cost?

The Crystal Case costs $39.99 on which is excellent value for money. If you plan to buy this case to protect your phone while trail running or hiking, remember to use our exclusive Rokform code TRAILANDKALE25, which will take 25% off your entire order at checkout!


See you on the trails!


As the founder of Trail & Kale, and seasoned marathoner & ultrarunner, Alastair loves bringing our readers independent running shoe reviews and gear insights to help you run your best. Learn more about Trail & Kale here.


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