Finding the right watch for your needs isn’t always so simple. Will you prioritize fashion over functionality or opt for something totally unique? If you’re looking for your next favorite timepiece, here are some men’s watches we think you should check out.
Why buy a watch?
Watches do more than simply tell the time. They can showcase a man’s distinctive approach to style and bring out nuanced facets of an outfit that would otherwise go unheralded. If you live an active lifestyle, they’re also a great way to keep track of the time you spend running or swimming. Investing in a luxury watch can even open up doors for you in terms of business opportunities since many powerful people like to do business with those who match their own style and gravitas.
What should you look for in a watch?
- Style: From analog watches to digital faces, lavish stainless steel options to leather bands to silicone molds, you should have a good idea of which design will blend well with your established style. A watch’s price tag will also somewhat determine when and where you might choose to employ it. A luxury watch is not a great choice to take on your camping trip, just as a waterproof digital sports watch might not be appropriate for your important business meeting.
- Durability: The most durable watches you’ll come across are those designed for outdoor use. However, there are still spiffy watches that know how to take care of themselves. Many timepieces utilize scratch-resistant crystal to maintain their image, and cases are tightly sealed to resist water entry in up to 100 feet of water, at minimum. While superb durability usually comes at a cost, there are still plenty of inexpensive watches on the market that feature rugged designs great for outdoor activities and even swimming.
- Visibility: At the end of the day, you’re looking for a practical accessory that knows how to accomplish one task better than the rest. Seek out a watch that can be easily read and seen, whether via a large watch face, digital interface, or a backlight. If your watch has additional features, such as a stopwatch, heart rate monitor, or compass, these should also be easy to find and use, on a clean, intuitive interface.
How much can you expect to invest in a good watch?
This question really depends on how you plan to use your watch. For rugged outdoor activities, it’s fairly easy to find great watches in the $30-$50 price range that will offer a lot in terms of durability and functionality. Casual watches, on the other hand, differ slightly insofar as their prices are often determined by the materials they’re comprised of, as well as the brand they are made by. Thus, a versatile watch that’s great for everyday use can set you back anywhere from $25-$70. Luxury watches, on the other hand, almost always come with a high price tag. You can expect to pay $100 minimum for a great luxury watch, with the sky being the upper limit. However, if you aren’t one to pay for a watch’s brand name, be sure to do your research when shopping for a luxury watch to ensure it offers you enough to justify the elevated price point.
Timex Easy Reader 38mm Leather Strap Watch
This timepiece is available in 13 color variations, each with a genuine leather strap.
Pros: Understated elegance is the name of the game with this Easy Reader Leather Strap Watch from Timex. It’s a classic choice, one that’s capable of elevating an outfit while not calling too much attention to itself in the process. It features an easy-to-read, backlit 38-millimeter watch face strapped onto a slim 20-millimeter band that’s made from genuine leather and can be adjusted to fit up to an 8-inch wrist circumference. This watch is also available in 13 case and band color variations.
Cons: While it won’t be noticeable if there’s ambient sound around you, this watch does tick fairly loudly. Thus, you may need to keep it away from your bed when sleeping at night, especially if you’re easily perturbed by repetitive sounds.
Bottom Line: Those seeking an inexpensive watch that scores high marks in terms of functionality and style will find a lot to love here. While this watch won’t necessarily turn many heads, it’s versatile enough so that you can likely find a style option that gels with your unique look.
Michael Kors Lexington Chronograph Stainless Steel Watch
A luxurious steel watch that balances a dressed-up look with a few modern perks.
Pros: A stunning accessory that prefers to stand out, this Michael Kors Lexington Chronograph Watch is available in 15 gold, silver, and blue stainless steel options. This watch balances a seminal dressed-up appeal with a few modern touches. You’ll marvel at the chronograph analog and three sub-eye displays beneath its scratch-resistant crystal glass while silently appreciating the textured feel of its beveled case and band. It’s also water-resistant in up to 100 meters of submersion.
Cons: This watch runs a little large, so if you have a smaller-than-average wrist size, be prepared to have a link or two removed. Additionally, the face is pretty bulky, which can lead to it appearing oversized depending on the wearer.
Bottom Line: If you’re looking for a great watch that will look good in professional or business-casual attire, this one’s a stellar choice. It also comes in some really unique styles if gold isn’t your thing. However, its design is somewhat limiting regarding who can successfully pull it off.
Timex x Mossy Oak Expedition Watch
The ideal choice for users who prefer to read their time without delay.
Pros: A lightweight choice that’s great for outdoor use, the Timex x Mossy Oak Expedition Watch is ideal for those who live simply. This is a rugged choice built to take a beating, with its adjustable 16-millimeter nylon strap and reinforced resin case. It’s also safe to wear while swimming or jogging on a rainy day and outperforms similar sporty timepieces in terms of all-day comfort.
Cons: While it’s nice that this watch includes stopwatch and lap functionality, there’s no way to record your lap times (other than manually), which somewhat limits its usefulness for serious athletes. Its slim design can also be problematic for those with larger wrists.
Bottom Line: Realistically, you can find watches that are pretty similar to this for around half the cost. However, they’re unlikely to last half as long as this one will. While this won’t be an ideal choice for everyone, it’s a no-brainer for those who value function over form and durability over a bargain bin price tag.
CakCity Digital Sports Watch
A reinforced sporting watch that's shock- and water-resistant, as well as easy to read.
Pros: This budget-friendly watch from CakCity is designed for the active lifestyle while supplying its own sense of sporty fashion. What makes this the clear-cut choice for sporty men is its durability. It’s shock- and water-resistant (up to 50 meters of submersion) throughout, meaning you’ll be more than covered in case you take a bad spill on land or out of a canoe. It’s also easy to read during the day or night, making it a great choice for your next rugged outdoor escapade.
Cons: The buttons on this watch are pretty sensitive. While this serves as no major annoyance, it can be pretty inconvenient to look at your watch and see it turned to stopwatch mode due to a minor bump, especially if you’re in the middle of a task. Additionally, this watch’s band is not the most comfortable option on the market.
Bottom Line: If you wear a watch while camping or playing sports, you won’t be rocking a Rolex. This sports watch, on the other hand, offers enough in terms of durability and style to make it a natural choice for a wide range of rugged activities. Thankfully, it’s also priced right, so even if it meets its maker on a rocky mountain trail, you likely won’t regret your investment.
Bewell Men's Wooden Watch
Boldly fashion-forward, this natural wooden timepiece is a sweet alternative to what you think you know about watches.
Pros: A bold timepiece that puts many modern options to shame in terms of originality, this Bewell Men’s Wooden Watch is crafted from natural wood. There’s an immense level of carved craftsmanship here, from the smooth and rounded feel of each segment in the wrist band to the fine line work featured in its face. And that careful carving is especially prevalent when it’s finally wrapped around your wrist, offering a lightweight and easy-to-wear feel no matter what you’re doing at the time.
Cons: This watch is not water-resistant, and since nearly the entire ensemble is made from real wood, you’ll want to avoid getting it wet whenever possible. Thus, even when washing your hands, it’s probably a good idea to remove it. It can also be a little tricky to remove a link or two in order to adjust the size, but it scores points for coming with a tool to help you along the way.
Bottom Line: While this isn’t the only wooden watch on the market, it’s one of the most breathtaking ones. And, it’s priced perfectly. Although its susceptibility to water damage does somewhat limit its usefulness, this is still a watch you’ll love wearing if you’re looking for something unique and eye-catching.
You don’t have to spend a whole month’s salary to have a watch you’ll cherish for years to come. As long as you consider when and where you’ll wear your new watch, how much you’re willing to spend, and which type of watch will match your unique style, you’re sure to find a watch you’ll love.