The best thing you can get for your Nintendo Switch for less than $20 / £20

Red and blue Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons in controller shell
(Image credit: Enrique Vidal Flores on Unsplash)

For many, it may be the most affordable of this generation’s big three consoles, but the Nintendo Switch is still expensive.

If you’ve recently bought a Nintendo Switch – or are planning on shopping for one during the Black Friday 2022 sales period – then ancillary purchases like accessories might be the last thing on your mind. Especially when many accessories like controllers, charging docks and carry cases can be pretty expensive.

But what if we told you that there’s an ideal  type of accessory that you can buy for less than $20 / £20? Not only will they protect an area of your Switch from wear and tear, but they’ll look good while doing it, making this an accessory that’s both practical and aesthetically pleasing.

We’re talking about thumb grips. And admittedly, they’re probably not the first Nintendo Switch accessories that come to mind, perhaps overshadowed by the likes of the Nintendo Switch Pro Controller or the best gaming headsets that are Switch compatible. But we’ll tell you why you shouldn’t sleep on these awesome accessories, especially when they’re so affordable.

A gripping tale

Nintendo Switch displaying Animal Crossing New Horizons

(Image credit: Shutterstock / Vantage_DS)

So, why are Nintendo Switch thumb grips so great? For starters, they can help protect the Switch’s analog sticks from wear and tear due to extended use. That’s especially handy if you frequently play in portable mode, own a Nintendo Switch Lite, or prefer to play in docked mode using the Joy-Con as your go-to controller setup.

Not only that, they look great to boot. There’s a ton of artists out there on sites like Amazon and Etsy making a living creating and selling bespoke thumb grips for your Nintendo Switch. From the practical, no-nonsense covers to cutesy game or anime-themed grips, there’s something for everyone when you search for Nintendo Switch thumb grips.

Now Nintendo doesn’t manufacture or endorse any official thumb grips for its console, but don’t let that put you off buying a set. There may be no official Nintendo seal of approval, but that doesn’t mean thumb grips aren’t made with quality in mind. The best thumb grips out there are still crafted with care, and you’ll find that many hold thousands of 5-star ratings across several online retailers.

 Where should I shop for Nintendo Switch thumb grips? 

Nintendo Switch thumb grips

(Image credit: Etsy / Kingthumbgrips)

Given that most Nintendo Switch thumb grips are made by third-party companies or hobbyist sellers, we don’t expect they’ll be among the best Black Friday Nintendo Switch deals. However, most thumb grips are affordable enough that a lack of discounts likely won’t be an issue for you.

Over at Amazon, brands like Perfectsight and GeekShare make excellent and well-reviewed thumb grips inspired by a swathe of aesthetics. Take these adorable Kirby-themed thumb grips, for example. Or these delightfully spooky caps. Whether you’re buying for yourself or for a friend or family member, you’ll doubtless find a perfect set of thumb grips, no matter the recipient.

Etsy is also a fantastic source of exquisitely designed thumb grips. We’ll admit to spending more time browsing here than we perhaps should’ve, but only because many of the designs sold here are so mesmerizing. We’re in love with these wholesome Froggy Grips, for example. And these Pokémon-themed caps? Perfect for fans of the franchise, both casual and hardcore, young and old.

To sum up, consider buying a set of Nintendo Switch thumb grips this Holiday season. They add style and sustainability to your Switch console and make for an affordable gift or stocking filler as the Holidays roll around.

Rhys Wood
Hardware Editor

Rhys is TRG's Hardware Editor, and has been part of the TechRadar team for more than two years. Particularly passionate about high-quality third-party controllers and headsets, as well as the latest and greatest in fight sticks and VR, Rhys strives to provide easy-to-read, informative coverage on gaming hardware of all kinds. As for the games themselves, Rhys is especially keen on fighting and racing games, as well as soulslikes and RPGs.