Best Nintendo Switch Skins For 2021: Stylish, Protective, And Safe-To-Use Options
Nintendo Switch skins let you safely personalize your console while protecting it from scratches and other damage.
The Nintendo Switch is a versatile console in terms of the number of ways you can play it, but when it comes to designs, your official options are more limited outside of buying one of its special editions or a new $80 pair of Joy-Cons. That's why Nintendo Switch skins are such an appealing option: They're much cheaper, offer a broader range of designs and colors, and also add an extra layer of protection to your console (many of them come with a screen protector as well). Though you'll likely still want a carrying case to fully protect your Switch while you're out and about, Switch skins can help guard against everyday wear and tear. And whether you're looking to rep a specific franchise (like The Legend of Zelda), sport a cutesy theme, or customize your design, there are some excellent and affordable Switch skins out there worth considering.
Are Nintendo Switch skins safe to use?
This is still a common concern for many people considering whether or not to skin their Switch, and it actually stems from one of the brands featured on this list: Dbrand. Back in 2017, Dbrand warned gamers against using any Nintendo Switch skins because, in their early testing, they discovered that the Joy-Con coating was susceptible to damage from their adhesive when the skin was removed. However, Dbrand has since developed a new type of adhesive that is easily removed without any damage (you can read more about it on their website), and other companies have followed suit to create skins that are perfectly safe to use. Every Nintendo Switch skin on this list can be safely used and removed without leaving damage on your Switch or Joy-Cons.
Best Nintendo Switch skins
If you're looking to pick up a new Nintendo Switch skin, you'll find an overwhelming amount of options out there on Amazon alone, so we've dug through them all and highlighted some of the best-reviewed brands below. These are a good place to start if you're shopping for a cute Switch skin, though they're by no means the only options worth considering.
- Best first-party Nintendo themes: Controller Gear
- Cutest aesthetic: GeekShare
- Best customization: Dbrand
- Best pop culture designs: Skinit
- Best protection: Teyomi
Controller Gear Zelda Switch Skins
Brand: Controller Gear
- Best offering of licensed Nintendo designs
- Easily removable without leaving residue
- Comes with a screen protector
- Great quality
- Easily dockable
- Switch Lite options are slightly more limited
Controller Gear is one of our favorite Switch accessory brands, and they offer a nice selection of Nintendo Switch skins, mainly licensed options for franchises like The Legend of Zelda, Animal Crossing, and Mario. Controller Gear's Switch skin bundles include covers for the dock, Joy-Cons, Joy-Con grip, and the back of the console itself as well as a bonus screen protector. These are simple peel-and-press skins that come off as easily as they go on without leaving any residue, and they're designed to fit precisely around the buttons and Joy-Cons without affecting the sensors.
Controller Gear's Zelda Switch skins look great, with our favorite being the Gold Cartridge-themed design shown above. You can also get skins inspired by Wind Waker, Breath of the Wild, and more.
Controller Gear Animal Crossing Switch Skins
Most of Controller Gear's Switch skin designs are for Animal Crossing: New Horizons because of how popular that game was in 2020 and the number of new Switch owners eager for any and all Animal Crossing merch. As such, Animal Crossing fans have a ton of Switch skin options to choose from whether you own a standard Switch or Switch Lite. According to Controller Gear, these skins were tested and approved by Nintendo for safe use, and like other Controller Gear skins, they peel on and off easily.
Controller Gear Pokemon Switch Skins
There aren't as many in-stock options when it comes to Pokemon Switch skins, but Controller Gear does have a few cute bundles, including this adorable pixel Pokemon design shown above. We also love this floral Charmander design and this neon paint drip design with Pikachu.
Controller Gear Super Mario Bros. Switch Skin
If you like combining retro-inspired designs with modern consoles, this Super Mario Bros.-themed Switch skin might be for you. The front of the dock shows pixel Mario jumping off a ledge, while the back of the Switch shows a hungry piranha plant. The black background has various Super Mario Bros. iconography on it, and each Joy-Con has a little Mario figure posing at the bottom.
GeekShare Ice Cream Cat Switch Skin
- Wide range of pastel designs for those wanting a cute aesthetic
- Flexible TPU material makes installation easier and offers nice protection
- Soft without feeling rubbery
- Matching thumb grips and carrying cases available
- Can be docked but fit is tight
- Doesn't come with a screen protector
GeekShare is one of the bestselling Switch skin brands on Amazon, and it's not hard to see why--their pastel range of Switch skins, cases, and thumb grips offer some of the cutest designs around. GeekShare's Switch skins also offer better protection than Controller Gear's line, as they consist of a TPU protective shell that actually provides a bit of a buffer between your Switch and anything that might bump or scrape. This slightly extra bulk comes at a cost, however, as sliding your Switch into its dock with this skin attached will be a tight squeeze. Because of that, you'll likely want to pick up a screen protector for docked play, just in case; GeekShare doesn't include one with this particular set. If you're looking for a super-cute skin for your Switch, it doesn't get better than GeekShare's range--and they even offer adorable matching thumb grips and cases (right now, there's a promotion that gets you a four-piece set of thumb grips for free).
GeekShare Alchemy Cat Switch Skin
This GeekShare skin is only slightly different from the previous one. Instead of being made of soft TPU material, this skin is made of a slightly more rigid polycarbonate material, which tends to be more durable and impact-resistant. It features the same split design that makes applying and removing it easy, and it'll still be a slightly tight fit when docked. This particular design shows a black cat doing alchemy, and it's absolutely adorable.
GeekShare Sakura Pink Switch Skin
For those who prefer a simpler design, GeekShare also makes plain pastel skins in pink, purple, blue, green, and yellow. This protective shell is also made of durable PC material with a split design that's easy to install and remove.
Dbrand Switch Skins
Customization starts at $6.95
- Offers the most customization in terms of colors
- Available for Switch OLED as well
- No damage or residue left over
- Easily dockable
- Each piece of customization is an added expense
- Installation is slightly more involved; requires a hair dryer
Similar to what Microsoft offers with the Xbox Design Lab, Dbrand has taken a customization-focused approach to Switch skins. The store lets you select specific colors, materials, and patterns for each Joy-Con, the console back, the dock face, and dock accents, which means you can put together a pretty neat color scheme (Dbrand has some examples on its website if you take a look). Installation is somewhat tricky and must be done carefully with precision (fortunately, there are some great tutorial videos available from Dbrand itself), and you'll need a hair dryer to apply some heat for the skins to stick and to avoid bumps. That might sound scary, but Dbrand's skins have been designed specifically to ensure no damage is done nor any residue left on the Switch or Joy-Cons with removal.
Pricing-wise, this is a much cheaper alternative to buying new Joy-Cons if you're just looking to replace your Joy-Con colors, as each side costs $7.95. You can easily rack up the costs if you decide to customize other parts, though, and Dbrand also offers a tempered glass screen protector two-pack for a whopping $19.95 (we recommend amFilm's $6 two-pack instead). Still, Dbrand's customizable Switch skins are an awesome choice for those who have a specific color scheme in mind, want a design that'll look really high-quality and natural when applied, and don't want to risk any potential damage.
Skinit Switch Skins
- Offers licensed pop culture and sports-themed designs
- 3M adhesive backing makes it easy to remove without damage
- Most of the designs are underwhelming
Skinit is another one of the big brands that makes Nintendo Switch skins, and it's particularly notable for its range of sports- and pop culture-related designs, from football teams to anime, Marvel, and Disney. Amazon carries Skinit Nintendo Switch skins, but they're $5 more than they are on Skinit's website--however, you'll basically make up for this difference with shipping fees vs. Amazon's free delivery. Either way, Skinit's Switch skins are more expensive than most of the other options on this list, so you're really paying for the designs here. Skinit is also safe to use with adhesive that comes off without leaving any damage (this YouTube video shows it in action).
Teyomi Protective Silicone Case
- Better protection than a regular Switch skin
- Comes with a tempered glass screen protector
- Rubber grip makes handheld play more comfortable
- Offers storage for two game cards
- Also available for Switch Lite
- Mostly available in plain colors
This one is more of a Nintendo Switch grip than a skin, but we like that it offers better protection than the average skin thanks to its soft silicone case and the included tempered glass screen protector. It also adds an ergonomic grip to make handheld play more comfortable, and if you're taking your Switch on the go, you can safely store two game cards inside this case as well. This option is more about utility than looks--it's only available in five colors, and the Switch Lite version only has colors matching the system itself--but for the enhanced protection and grip, this is an awesome choice for the price.
Teyomi Pastel Switch Skin
Though Teyomi's main offering for the Switch is the grip case above, it does offer more of a traditional Switch skin, available in two pastel combos (pink/blue or pink/purple). As a nice perk, you automatically get two cat-themed thumb grips as well. It features a split three-piece design that's easily to put on and remove, and because this skin is relatively thin, you shouldn't have much trouble docking it either. The back section is made of anti-scratch ABS material, while the Joy-Cons are covered with shock-absorbent TBU material that's both protective and soft to the touch. Overall, this Switch skin is very comparable to GeekShare's options, so it's really a matter of which design you prefer.
More Tech Picks From GameSpot
- Best Computer Speakers For Gaming
- Best 4K TVs For Gaming
- Best Monitor For PS5, Xbox Series X
- + Show More More Tech Picks From GameSpot Links (6)
- Best Gaming Chairs In 2023
- Best Cheap Gaming Monitors In 2022
- Best PC Headsets In 2023
- The Best Nintendo Switch Controllers You Can Buy
- The Best VR Headsets In 2020
- The Best Webcam For 2021: Top Picks For Streaming On Twitch And YouTube
The products discussed here were independently chosen by our editors. GameSpot may get a share of the revenue if you buy anything featured on our site.
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Join the conversation