Once you’ve picked up a decent mobile photography kit, you’ll find yourself wanting to bring your gear everywhere in a phone camera bag. You’ll want something to put your new gear in so that it’s convenient to carry and access; maybe a phone camera backpack? Oh, and you want to be wary of waterproofing too.
But, does that case or bag need to be similar to a traditional camera bag? What should you look for when considering a smartphone camera pouch in 2020? Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered.
What is a Phone Camera Bag?
Who asks questions like this? It’s self-explanatory. A mobile camera bag or a phone lens pouch is precisely what it sounds like.
They differ from regular old generic bags in a couple of crucial ways. Usually, it’s that lens bags are divided into compartments to aid in organization. Lenses tend to be quite vulnerable, so it’s a bad idea just to leave them loose and jangling around with other things. Furthermore, most camera bags have straps or loops that allow you to keep them on your person and easily accessible.
Don’t get sucked into only considering phone-specific options. You’ll severely limit your search, and you’ll miss out on some great bags. Find a photography bag that fits your needs – whatever they may be – and start taking better mobile photos. And remember that these make great gifts for photographers!
Why Do You Need a Phone Lens Bag?
You could use an everyday old plastic grocery bag if you needed to, but that doesn’t seem very appealing, does it?
If you bought a lens kit, or less often, a single lens, it probably came with a pouch of some kind to store the lenses in. As your collection of phone lenses expands with one-off acquisitions, DIY solutions, and converted camera lenses, you’ll run out of room quickly.
The primary purpose of a mobile phone camera bag is to organize and store lenses. That’s pretty straightforward. Ideally, it will do so in a way that makes it a piece of cake to grab the lens and attach it to your phone quickly.
Secondarily, lens bags offer protection from the elements. Lenses can represent significant investments, especially if you’ve purchased high-end lenses like those made by Moment. Protecting them is vital – they’re expensive! Water or even just humidity can damage your lens, so sealed bags and pouches are handy. Lens bags are always made of some soft material like neoprene so that in the unlikely event that you lose a lens cap, you can store a lens somewhat safely.
Please don’t lose your lens caps, though.
What to Look for in a Phone Camera Bag?
Here are factors to consider:
- Price – Obviously. As with all things in life, you get what you pay for. A $50 lens bag will be better than a $10 bag every time. Fortunately, most camera backpacks, bags, and pouches tend to be on the cheaper side since they’re not too big or complicated.
- Space – There’s a trade-off here. On the one hand, you need enough space for all of your current lenses (as well as accessories such as ring lights, microfiber cloths, cables, etc.) as well as some extra space for any future purchases. On the other hand, the bigger the bag is – maybe a phone camera backpack is for you, the bulkier and heavier it will be too. Finding the right balance is critical.
- Organization – Not all camera lens pouches come with organizational capacity. Some have removable inserts that can create compartments, plus zippered pouches and pockets. Others are just big empty bags. Usually, some degree of organization is valuable because you don’t want your lenses banging around with other stuff.
- Weatherproofing – Inevitably, there will come a time when you and your gear are caught outside in bad weather. Fortunately, many phones are waterproof these days. Lens won’t immediately disintegrate or fall apart on contact with water, but it can damage them (especially over time). A smartphone camera lens case that is totally sealed is beneficial because it will also prevent that insidious killer humidity from ruining your gear.
- Ease of Access – It’s impractical to have all of your gear out all the time, but it’s not unusual that photo opportunities are quick and fleeting. If you see an animal doing something cute or find an interesting angle on a walking person, you want to grab that shot immediately. You want both the bag AND the lenses to be readily available. That means that the container should be able to be attached to your person (or backpack) with straps or clips so that it’s always in arm’s reach. The lenses should be easily accessible without rummaging through the bag too.
2020’s Top Phone Lens Bags
Best Quality Option
Best Deal Option
Best Budget Option
|Title||F Stop Ajna Mountain Pack||Moment Weatherproof Travel Case||Moment Dual Mobile Lens Pouch|
|Capacity||Basically Infinite||4 Lenses + Accessories||2 Lenses|
|Link||Check Price||Check Price||Check Price|
Best Quality Option
|Title||F-Stop Ajna Mountain Pack|
Best Deal Option
|Title||Moment Weatherproof Travel Case|
|Capacity||4 Lenses + Accessories|
Best Budget Option
|Title||Moment Dual Mobile Lens Pouch|
Unfortunately, there aren’t many options when it comes to phone-specific lens pouches. The good news is that most lenses come with a carrier of some kind, so you will only need a bag once you’ve amassed a collection.
Phone lens bags included in this guide get rated on a scale of 10. The cost of the bags ranges from $-$$$ based on the expense of the bag. Obviously, more dollar signs mean a more expensive bag. Here are some of our favorites.
f-stop Ajna Mountain Pack Rating: 9.5/10
f-stop Ajna Mountain Pack Cost: $$$
If you want to do adventure photography on your smartphone, then you’re going to need a camera backpack that can do more. Enter the f-stop Ajna Mountain Pack. This baby can keep you going out in the wilderness for days with all that storage space. The organization in the Ajna is net-level too. While it’s designed for DSLR dude who needs all that room, you’re a smartphone photographer that doesn’t.
Because this bag got built with DSLR in mind, there’s also the added benefit of support. The aluminum frame, in tandem with the Soft-Flex belt makes the bag so easy to carry. It’s like wearing a back brace that just happens to carry photography gear. Oh, and do know that your photography gear carrying back brace will also be almost impervious to rain and the elements.
Use all that extra room to prolong your trip! Stuff a few extra pairs of socks in there and stay out in the wild. Once you have the Ajna Mountain Pack, it’s where you’re going to want to be all the time anyway. If you’re looking for gifts for photographers, then you’ve found something certain to delight!
Moment Dual Mobile Lens Pouch Rating: 7.0/10
Moment Dual Mobile Lens Pouch Cost: $
This lens pouch is unassuming, but I assure you, it’s quality. It’s made by Moment, after all, the leading manufacturer of smartphone photography gear.
The pros and cons of this simple pouch are immediately apparent. It holds just two lenses, and it does it well. The lenses receive adequate protection inside the bag (which is pretty stylish too), but it lacks weatherproofing or expanded capacity. As a matter of fact, it pairs well with that drybag below.
It’s worth noting, though, that when you purchase a Moment lens, it comes with a microfiber carrying bag. While the bag doesn’t provide the protection of the travel case, if you’re careful with your lenses, it isn’t entirely necessary.
Moment Weatherproof Travel Case Rating: 8.5/10
Moment Weatherproof Travel Case Cost: $$
This small-sized camera bag, also by Moment, is included because it’s significantly different from the smaller pouch. It’s not just twice the size – it’s about four times the size. It also has the capacity (and, more importantly, the organization) to carry way more than four lenses.
This travel case is an all-in-one solution for your phone lens gear. It’ll hold all the equipment you have, minus a tripod, and it’ll do it stylishly. It’s small enough to fit in a backpack, and it’ll squeeze onto pretty much any shelf to protect your gear even while it’s stored.
What bag or pouch do you use to keep your lenses? A specialized one, your backpack, or even just a grocery bag? Let us know in the comments below!