A Watch Guide for the Modern Man
The wristwatch is a timeless and elegant men’s fashion accessory—but if you’ve never picked out a watch before, you might be amazed at how complicated they can be. Not to worry: We’re here to help. Below is our very quick rundown of some key considerations when selecting the perfect wrist-wear.
The movement of a watch refers to the way the hands move around the face, and also the internal mechanisms that produce that effect. Watch movement falls into one of three categories:
- Mechanical movement is powered by a coiled metal mainspring. These watches don’t need batteries, they produce smooth hand movement, and they are considered by watch enthusiasts to be the classiest option—though you’ll have to wind your mechanical watch often, and they may be less than accurate.
- Automatic watches, meanwhile, are also powered by a spring, but don’t require regular winding. The only drawback is that, again, it’s not as accurate. Also, important to note: You’ll need to store your automatic watch in a watch winder any time you’re not using it.
- Quartz watches, finally, are battery-powered, highly accurate, and require little maintenance, but they do sacrifice some smoothness and some elegance.
Any watch will tell you the time, but many will also come with complications. These might include any of the following:
- Moon phases
- Alarm clocks
- Repeaters (chimes on the hour or half hour)
- Chronographs (basically a stopwatch)
The complications you want are purely a matter of personal preference, of course; the most elegant, dressy watches usually just have one, which is the date, while more casual watches offer more features.
That brings us to the final category, which is watch style. There are a few primary types of watch style:
- Dress watches are usually thin; their faces are simple; they have few complications, if any; and the band will invariably be made of leather.
- Field watches are made to be functional, they usually have rugged cases, the band can be leather or canvas, and there usually aren’t many complications.
- Dive watches are characterized first and foremost by water resistance, and also by a generally “sporty” look.
- Racing watches are usually bigger, with leather or metal bands, chronographs, and large, easy-to-read dials.
There’s a lot to think about here—and the best way to get started is to get shopping! Start looking at some watches today, and see what you like and what you don’t.