Autoblog is not affiliated with the brands featured in our articles, but when you make a purchase through links on our site we may earn a commission.
License plate frames are attractive and functional car accessories. Check out our favorites below and take your car’s look up a notch. Car accessories like this let owners add a little bit of personality to their vehicles. From vinyl stickers to tints and spoilers, there are a ton of alterations that can enhance the look of your car. And another great way to add some style to your car's look is with a license plate frame, an accessory that covers the borders of your license plate and adds a distinctive touch to your vehicle's overall look.
There’s a wide variety of options on the market, ranging from simple and sleek frames to bedazzled, stone-studded ones. Although selecting a license plate frame is ultimately down to an individual's preference, there are some important things to consider. To help you out, we’ve put together a list based on looks, durability, and price — check it out and get your hands on a high-quality license plate frame so you can drive with style!
The finest license plate frame models of 2022 in detail
These handcrafted license plate frames from Hippo Creation come in a two-pack that will fit almost all U.S. and Canadian license plates. Each license plate frame has over 1,000 crystals that are neatly placed by hand on the frame’s top and bottom, and the frame itself is stainless steel, offering rust prevention and durability. This license plate frames are also waterproof and can withstand car washes, rainstorms and other harsh weather — the glue used for the rhinestones is a tough waterproof adhesive that can endure it all. The frames are also easy to install and comes with all the required mounting essentials. The premium quality, weatherproofing and high-end look of this license plate frame make it our number one pick — in short, it’s simply fabulous.
- Stylish rhinestone design
- Made from high-quality materials
- Easy to mount
- It may start to fade after long usage
The AUJEN license plate frame fits nearly all U.S. and Canadian license plates, and its industrial-grade silicone has a soft, flexible texture that’s waterproof, rust-free and offers exceptional durability. To help out when it’s raining, the frame comes with three drainage holes that release water. This silicone license plate frame won’t rattle and is easy to install. If you happen to have any issues, the AUJEN service team is here to help you out and avoid any further inconveniences. This sleek, matte-finished license plate frame won’t obscure any of your license plate’s information, ensuring that you won’t get into any trouble with the law.
- Waterproof, rust-free design
- Easy to install
- Responsive customer support if issues arise
- Sharp sides can slice silicone
These stylish Sunplus Trade license plate frames have a nice chrome finish and a two-hole slim design. Premium quality stainless steel keeps rust away and helps the frame withstand harsh weather, and apart from its sleek layout, it’ll be a good fit for all U.S. license plates and won’t block any important state tags. This set comes with two license plate frames and other essentials required for installation, such as screws and screw caps. The smooth edges of this license plate frame won’t scratch your car or rattle while you’re driving, and if you’re strapped for cash or simply don’t want a flashy design, then this license plate frame might be the one for you.
- Sleek, simple design
- Installation kit included with purchase
- Lightweight yet sturdy build
- Screws may be short for some cars
These AOOTF aluminum license plate frames fit well on both front and rear license plates, and thanks to their slim design and carbon fiber pattern your license plates will sport a sleek, stylish look. The looks are nice, but what’s important is the material a license plate frame is made of — these are sturdy and made from high-quality material, and they’re also rustproof and waterproof, ensuring long-lasting durability. These license plate frames have a high gloss clear resin layer that won’t slide off, and included with the frames themselves are all the necessary accessories to make the installation process quick and easy. These frames also have a shock pad to prevent rattling and ensure a quiet, comfortable ride.
- Solid, durable, and stylish design
- Installation hardware included
- Rust- and waterproof
- Not actual carbon fiber
This American flag license plate frame from Tactilian includes gloss stars and stripes on a subtle matte background to express your patriotism on the road. You’ll see a 3D effect on these license plate frames thanks to their embossed design and gloss, and they’ll fit all standard American license plates without covering up any tags. Although these license plate frames are made of plastic, they’re sturdy and won’t scratch your car paint like metal frames can. In addition to the license plate frames, you’ll also receive black screw caps to maintain a clean look for the frame, and the frames themselves are easy to install and can endure harsh weather conditions.
- Sturdy and durable
- Easy to install
- Patriotic American design
- Screws might not line up
Buying guide: License plate frames
License plate frames can give your license plate an attractive look, and as long as they don't cover up your state tags or any other important information, you can install them without having to worry. Picking up a license plate frame can help your license plate look more presentable and also save it from rusting.
Not all license plate frames work well, though — some may crack, fade or even rattle when you drive. This is why you need to ensure that the frame you purchase is high-quality, weatherproof and rattle-free. To help you out, we've gathered all the information you’ll need to purchase a great license plate frame. Let's dig in!
Why purchase a license plate frame?
License plate frames are great add-ons to the front and rear of your car. They can add an attractive finish to your car's plates and also act as a protective shield. Here’s why they're so popular:
One of the biggest reasons car owners invest in license plate frames is to achieve a fresh look for their license plates. License plate frames come in many styles and designs — from shiny ones to frames that are matte-finished, there’s something for everyone. You can also get license plate frames custom-made by some stores and add a unique, personalized touch to your ride.
A license plate without a frame can scratch your car, and if your license plate is frameless, it can rust and erode faster. A quick fix is getting a sleek frame on the plate, which will protect its sides from rust and harsh conditions.
Types of license plate frames
While you’re out looking for a frame for your license plate, you’re bound to see quite a range of products on offer. To help you out, let’s take a look at license plate frames based on their material and style.
Based on materials, we see lots of variety when it comes to license plate frames — from solid stainless steel frames that are durable and long-lasting to silicone or high-grade rubber frames that are flexible and stretchy. Some manufacturers use plastic or other metals, such as aluminum, for license plate frames as well.
The design and shape of license plate frames vary a lot too. Some are slim and cover just the edges, while others are wider. The bottom-wide design covers the bottom of your plate more but might be illegal if it covers any of the information on your plate — top-wide frames, on the other hand, cover the top more. The design of license plate frames also varies, and there are countless different patterns, colors and prints on offer.
Must-have features in a license plate frame
Take a look at all the necessary features your license plate frames should have to ensure that you end up with the ideal frames for your car:
Durable and sturdy
When purchasing license plate frames, you’ll have to look for something durable and well-built. Opting for flimsy frames will likely be a waste of money no matter how good they look, and this is because license plate frames undergo a lot of harsh conditions on the back of your car — from direct sunlight to heavy rain, from dirt and mud to car washes, your license plate frame is constantly being put through the wringer. This can lead to cracking or fading in license plate frames made of low-quality materials, and that’s why it's smart to invest in a frame made from premium materials like high-end stainless steel or aluminum.
The design of a license plate frame depends on your personal choice, and the market has pretty much every type of design you can think of, from basic, neutral frames to stylish, shiny ones. If you’re not sure what to choose, it’s a good idea to invest in a design that goes well with your car — you don't want to be stuck with a license plate frame that looks out of place on your vehicle.
Flashy frames might not work in every situation, and sticking to neutral tones can be a safe bet. If you’re looking for a license plate frame that will make a statement, consider investing in a high-end shiny one, as this will set your car apart in a sparkly way!
Size and fit
The last thing you want is to purchase a license plate frame that doesn't fit well, and this is why it's important to invest in a frame that’s the same size as your plates. Some license plates have screws that go deeper in your car, and in these scenarios, you may need to swap screws on the frames so that they fit well. As far as size is concerned, look for frames that only cover the sides of your license plate.
It's usually a good idea to invest in a license plate frame that’s advertised as being rustproof. License plates have to endure rough conditions, and even the mere use of water on plates can cause oxidation and lead to rust. A protective license plate frame, though, will cover the sides of your number plate and prevent it from eroding.
It’s also a smart idea to get a weatherproof license plate frame. From heavy storms to strong winds, and even on long summer days, license plate frames will have to endure a lot. To keep your frame from cracking or fading away, invest in a weatherproof one from the get-go.
Make sure that the license plate frames you’re buying don’t cover the state tag or number of your vehicle -- applying anything on the frame that hides or covers your car's information is illegal and will likely get you a ticket. It's a good idea to check that the frames you're getting won't be too wide because you don’t want them covering up any text on your license plate.
Installing frames on your license plates isn't a hard task -- all it takes is a few screws, the frames themselves, and a couple of minutes. Before buying, ensure that the license plate frames come with a complete installation hardware set. The package should contain all the screws, washers, caps, and screwdrivers you need to attach the frames to the plates -- this way you won’t have to spend additional money to install your frames.
License Plate Frames FAQs
Q: Are license plate frames legal?
Yes! License plate frames are legal since they only cover the sides of your license plate. Ensure that the frames do not cover up any of the text on the plate as this is likely illegal.
Q: Can I get a customized license plate frame?
If you're someone who wants to give their car a personalized look, you’ll be happy to know that customized license plate frames do exist. You can easily get your hands on a custom frame online or in nearby stores.
Q: Why does my license plate frame rattle?
This is likely because of its poor fit. If the frame didn't come with four screws, it will likely keep rattling. A quick fix is to apply a strong adhesive to the bottom side of the frame -- once sealed, it won't shake or make any more noise.
Q: Do license plate frames come with screw caps?
Many license plate frames come with stylish screw caps to give your frame a clean finish, but some may not. If that’s the case, you can purchase screw caps from any auto shop.