Pela is blipping on our radar, and we’re not the only ones: Forbes, Martha Stewart, POPSUGAR, Mashable, and Buzzfeed are all raving about it. The Pela Case is the world’s first 100% biodegradable phone case and they’ve got accessories to go with their main act. This Pela Case review will tell you everything there is to know about the company and its products, so you can decide for yourself if they’re worth all the hype.
Overview of Pela
Pela wants our future world to be completely waste free. The brand’s founder Jeremy Lang witnessed firsthand the havoc plastic is wreaking on our oceans while on a family vacation in 2010. He started experimenting with organic materials, searching for a plastic alternative that could be used to produce what most of us clumsy or responsible people really benefit from: phone cases.
After all of Lang’s tinkering, Pela’s signature material came onto the scene with the brand’s 2011 launch in Saskatoon. Plant-based Flaxstic™ is used to make Pela’s eco friendly phone cases and accessories, and here’s the DL on this material: it’s a combination of flax straw waste, plant-based biopolymers, and recycled materials. The flax-infused biopolymers provide added texture and impact resistance, helping to protect your phone and the environment.
Mission & Values
Pela believes that we have the technology to make everyday products without waste—it just takes the right companies and ambition. The brand recognizes the power of community:
“Everything we do together must be good for us as individuals, as a team, as a business, for our community and ultimately for our planet. There is no planet B.” That’s a pretty excellent point (I don’t know about you, but I’m not crazy about the idea of living on Mars).
Pela aspires to build an awareness and consciousness of the impact our choices have on our planet—whether the decision is big or small, they’re concerned with what is right. Pela embraces creativity to inspire innovation. They want to disrupt the status quo by being bolder than what’s traditional:
“The only reason things are the way they are is because other people made it that way. Which means with a little bit of creativity we can make things better.”
Pela donates 5% of their total sales to ocean conservation causes and they’ve already kept more than 313,528.6 pounds of plastic from being produced. Pela’s audacious goal is to keep 1 billion pounds of plastic from ever being made. They’ve partnered up with Save the Waves Coalition, the Surfrider Foundation, and Oceana to save our oceans, and by extension, our planet.
Pela Case Drop Test
The Pela Case survives most drops and fumbles, with a textured grip that makes them less slippery than most plastic cases. They’re shock absorbant, so according to Pela, your phone will bounce if you drop it. There is a bit of a hitch: Pela hasn’t actually conducted any official drop tests to confirm this, but there are tons of reviews that attest to how well the case protects your phone from the average fall.
We wanted to find out for ourselves if Pela really lives up to its promises. If you’re not up for reading the full Pela Case review, here are the highlights:
- 100% biodegradable & eco-friendly products
- 5% of all sales donated to ocean conservation
- Durable & scratch resistant cases
- Textured case design for optimal grip
- Cases come in a variety of colors
- Free shipping on orders over $25
- Screen Protection Guarantee
- Happiness Guarantee
- Slightly pricier than average phone cases
- No official Pela drop tests conducted
- Designs are basic with no patterns
- Most cases are limited edition and not always available
- Long shipping times for orders outside of the USA
Pela Cases Review
Before we get into Pela Cases, you should know that their selection is designed for iPhone, Samsung, Google, and limited Huawei and devices. You’ll find all the models and sizes they accommodate later on in this Pela Case review.
Pela Phone Cases
Pela offers clear cases with a colored ridge, featuring a rigid back and impact-absorbing edges. This model is for the fumble fingers out there who want to safeguard their phone without all the bulkiness. Your phone will be protected from impacts and scratches with sleek and grippy surroundings.
Pela’s Clear Eco Friendly Cases are priced at $44.95 or $73.08 if you want to throw in a liquid screen protector. You can choose between 9 colors: black, cantaloupe, cherry, teal, lavender, mint, sky blue, grey, and yellow.
If you want to ramp up the color, you can go with their Green Eco-Friendly Phone Case in black, green, lavender, mint, rose quartz, grey, or white. The full back is slightly less expensive than the clear version at $39.95 or $68.08 with the liquid screen protector. This model provides a stronger grip, which you can see in the lighter textured pieces:
Pela Limited Edition Phone Cases
This Pela case review turned up loads of cool phone cases by Pela offered for a limited time. They’ve got an Animal Collection including honey bees, koalas, whales, turtles, and shark skin.
The Bee Edition Case is their top seller and a portion of sales is donated to saving the honey bees! This alone makes them buzz worthy (sorry not sorry for the pun). This case is available in honey and black for $49.95 or $78.08 with a screen protector.
Pela has a handful of other limited edition cases designed in collaboration with their charity partners. One of my favorites is the Pela x Ocean ME to WE Ripple Effect Case with its zen waves design. This Pela case is available in turquoise or black for $42.95, or $71.98 with the screen protector.
For the star gazers out there who live by their signs, Pela has three Limited Edition Astrology Cases to choose from. You can get only the case for $42.95, or pay $71.08 to add on the liquid screen protector. The top-selling Retrograde Edition comes in cosmic blue, yellow, or cherry and has some sick otherworldly vibes:
Did you know that hemp is one of the most sustainable crops on the earth? I certainly did not. Pay homage to this super plant with the Hemp Eco-Friendly Case in black or moss green. Plus this is the least costly Pela Case out there for $39.95 (or $68.08 with the liquid screen protector).
Pela AirPods Case Covers
Your AirPods need some love too. Pela’s Apple AirPod Case is made from the same flax, biopolymer, and recycled material as their phone cases. They’re also soft to the touch with a grippy texture.
A bonus with these covers is the attached metal keychain so you can better keep track of your pods. Pela’s AirPods cases are available in lavender, honey, mint, and cantaloupe, or more understated black or teal for $24.95.
More Pela Products
You can compliment your Pela case with other everyday items, all 100% biodegradable with the same simple and laidback designs.
Pela Card Holder
The Pela Card Holder accommodates two ID or credit cards without the extra bulk of a wallet. This wallet pocket sticks securely to the back of any Pela phone case. The Pela Card Holder comes in black, cantaloupe, cherry, teal, lavender, mint, sky blue, grey, and yellow for $19.95.
You can choose the same shade or mix and match like so:
It was a happy surprise in this Pela Case review to find out that the brand also offers zero waste sunglasses. The Rachel and Dian shades are named after their designers, who interestingly enough are a marine biologist and a conservationist. The Leo is inspired by none other than the artistic genius Leonardo DaVinci.
Rachel comes in matte black, brown, and grey; Dian is available in black, brown, or grey; and Leo only comes in brown. If you look closely at the shades, you’ll see that they have the same flax texturizing as other Pela products. So if you’re looking for smooth, one-tone shades, these wouldn’t be for you. All Pela sunglasses are priced at $99.95.
Pela Liquid Screen Protector
According to Pela, there’s a “dirty, wasteful truth about Smartphone Screen Protectors”: more than 1 billion glass and plastic screen protectors are bought and thrown away every year. Pela’s solution is a literal solution. The liquid comes in a corked glass vial that hardens on any phone screen, increasing its strength by 10x.
Pretty revolutionary if you ask me. The Pela Screen Protector alone is $49.95, so you definitely save more if you get the phone case + protector bundle.
Pela Ethos Radiation Reduction
Pela wants you to stop engaging in unprotected texts (nice one)… Electromagnetic field/EMF radiation is on the rise with our smartphones, and more studies are indicating the damages posed by EMFs. Pela’s Ethos Radiation Reduction piece fits at the back of your phone to redirect and significantly reduce harmful EMFs, without scrambling or blocking your reception.
Before you get too excited by this tech, note that it’s sizing is only compatible with iPhone 11, 11 XR, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max, X, XS, 7, and 8. The Ethos costs $29.95, which does not include a case.
Pela Case Reviews: What Do Customers Think?
For this Pela Case review, we wanted to see if the brand actually follows through with its promises. On the Pela website, every product has near perfect reviews (4 or 5/5 stars). Many customers went with Pela due to its eco-friendliness. They appreciated the softness, durability, and grip of the cases, and loved that they’re easy to clean. Customers have left over 26,000 reviews on the site, which is definitely encouraging.
We dug deeper and ventured elsewhere on the web. Pela Case Amazon reviews were mixed, and those who rated the cases poorly expressed the belief that they had been given a knock-off version (make sure you verify the brand/sender, people!). There were also a few negative Pela Case reviews from REI Co-Op, including one in which a customer purchased a yellow model and the edges turned the blue color of his jeans (yikes).
Our Verdict on Pela
What should be mentioned in this Pela Case review is that it’s pretty much unheard of for a brand to have perfect ratings all over the web. A huge majority of them are positive, and you’re not taking much of a risk by ordering a case or accessory, and here’s why:
Pela allows returns and exchanges through their Happiness Guarantee policy (more on this in the FAQ section of this Pela Case review). The main advantage of Pela is that its customers contribute to the health of our planet, so if that’s important to you (it better be), we think this brand is definitely one to try out.
Pela Case Promotions & Discounts
You won’t find a Pela Case discount code or a Pela Case promo code right now, but they have an ongoing BOGO deal:
BOGO – Buy 1 Case, Get 1 Case Free
Pela has a buy 1 case, get another case free. They encourage customers to wash their cases, since phones host a lot of germs, bacteria, etc. Pela gives you a second case free so that you can always have a clean case on your phone.
Case + Screen Protector Combo
According to Pela’s website, 87% of customers choose this option for the extra savings. Selecting this combo amounts to paying $31.83 less compared to buying the products by themselves.
Where to Buy Pela Case
Pela cases and accessories can be purchased through:
- Their online store: pelacase.com and REI Co-Op online
- Select Vodaphone, BestBuy, Target, retail stores in Canada
- Saskatoon retail stores: The Better Good, Escape Sports, Ethos SalonSpa, Sask Made Marketplace, Tonic, SaskTel Corporate Stores
Will the Biodegradable Case Break Down With Use?
The answer is no! You can also get your Pela Case wet, and washing is encouraged. Pela products only break down if they are placed in compostable material.
What Happens if Your Phone Breaks While in a Pela Case?
Our Pela Case review found that the company does not guarantee your phone will not break. If your phone does break, they are not liable for the damages.
On the other hand, if your front screen cracks while using a Pela Case, they offer a Screen Protection Guarantee for Pela Cases purchased after April 1, 2018. To qualify for this, you must:
- Have purchased and applied the liquid screen protector after January 1, 2019
- Have purchased a Pela Case from their website or a verified retailer, plus provide a receipt
- Have an unscratched or uncracked screen prior to purchasing a Pela Case
Provided these conditions are met, Pela will refund you up to $200 for your screen repair. Note that Pela only repairs 1 screen per device per customer and the Screen Protection Guarantee covers only the front phone screen.
Pela Case Sizes/Models
Pela Cases are designed for the following Apple, Samsung, Google, and Huawei devices:
- iPhone SE, iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11, iPhone XR, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XS, iPhone X, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone 7, iPhone 8, iPhone 6, iPhone 6S, iPhone 5, iPhone 5S
- Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra, Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus, Samsung Galaxy S20, Samsung Galaxy A50, Samsung Galaxy S10, Samsung Galaxy S10+, Samsung Galaxy S10e, Samsung Note 9, Samsung Galaxy S9, Samsung S9 Plus, Samsung Galaxy Note 8, Samsung S8
- Google Pixel 4, Google Pixel 4XL, Google Pixel 3a, Google Pixel 3, Google Pixel 3XL, Google Pixel 2, Google Pixel 2XL
- Huawei P30 Pro, Huawei P30, Huawei P20 Lite
Pela Case Shipping Policy
Pela ships cases with as minimal packaging as possible, and each case arrives in a small brown envelope with a personalized note card (pretty cute). They have two standard shipping options available globally:
- Free shipping: most sustainable and lowest carbon footprint (exception: orders under $25 are charged a flat rate)
- Faster shipping: includes tracking and a quicker shipping time
Both shipping methods include a 24-48 hold for processing, and tracking is dependent on the country. Orders outside the USA may be subject to customs & duties.
Shipping times vary by country/geographical area, not including processing time:
|Free Shipping||5-7 business days||10-14 business days||5-7 business days||14-21 business days|
|Faster Shipping||3-5 business daysTwo-Day Shipping: 2 business days||5-7 business days||3-5 business days||10-14 business days|
Countries excluded from free shipping: India, China, Colombia, Mexico, United Arab Emirates, Russia, Peru, Kazakhstan, Aland Islands, Faroe Islands, Guadeloupe, North Macedonia Vatican City.
Pela Case Return Policy
Pela has a Happiness Guarantee policy. If you’re not 100% satisfied with your Pela Case or it arrives with defects, contact [email protected] within 90 days of purchase for a full refund. Customers are responsible for the cost of return shipping.
If you have questions beyond this Pela Case review, you can speak to their team members via:
- Pela Head Office: 604-460 Doyle Avenue Kelowna, British Columbia V1Y 0C2 Canada
- [email protected]
Check out our review on top-selling Ridge wallets, card holders, and phone cases.
Looking to buy or sell your used tech? Gazelle may be the service for you.