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How to Wear a Watch Without Worry (Ultimate Guide for Men)

Last Updated: June 16, 2021

Upon a dial squeaks a ticking hand that traverses its small world to help you navigate yours. It’s a small piece, idling doing its job without regard, so that you can focus on yours.

No, it’s not a personal assistant. It’s a watch.

And yet, watches aren’t just a faceless being like your personal assistant. They are shining beacons of expression, a wrist flex for flashing your prowess.

You can be a ruthless, mismanaged hack of a person and wear your watch with just about anything. It’s perfectly valid and viable. However, it also makes you look like a bit of a tool.

Instead, be smart, pay attention to what you’re wearing, and believe in the power of its existence, as a watch is an accentuator, not a dissolver.

Real pros know how to wear a watch fearlessly, while others drown with their wrist weight into the ground.

How to Wear a Watch

Pick the Right Wrist

Upon the initial accounting of time by humankind, man sought to define which is the appropriate way to wear a watch.

That rule, upon tradition, is to wear it on the non-dominant hand. Left hand for those who use their right, and vice-versa for lefties.

But it’s 2021, and as people evolve, so does fashion, so wearing it on any hand is reasonable.  So too should the watch, as it has become more versatile than ever.

Go even further and wear it upside-down if it makes reading the time easier. Engineers and the military wear this style to make it easy for them when they’re constantly using their hands.

If anyone tries to argue, challenge them to a fight right there and then, because only those who are close-minded challenge the way to wear a watch, and are often weak in constitution. 

Match All Accessories

When owning a watch, it’s important that your accessories all line up. Having a gold watch with a silver chain seems lazy.

Having a brown leather watch-band with black shoes and a black belt is inconsiderate and rather in poor taste.

Instead, keep it mindful and match your metals; if you’re wearing gold, stay gold and continue the philosophy with silver and other precious metals.

The same is equally true for the bands on your watch, but mostly for watches that feature interchangeable bands. If you have a black belt and black shoes, go for the black leather band as well.

It’s also important to keep in mind what activities you’ll be doing before deciding the type of watch, as digital doesn’t belong at a wedding and wearing a dress watch to workout seems irresponsible.

Pick the Right Style

Different watches have different vibes, just like your friend group. Don’t invite your weird friend around a bunch of normies, and don’t wear an out of place watch unless you want to stop being invited.

Instead, pick them carefully based on the occasion, and let your watch carry you through the situations at hand.

Below, we dive deeper into the most common watch styles, how to wear them, and where to wear them.

How to Wear Different Watch Styles 

Dress Watches

If any watch is an absolute necessity, a watch to rule all other watches, the dress watch is the one.

Usually done in sleek metals and designed meticulously to serve the greater good of aesthetics, dress watches just plain always look good.

The Rolex Oyster Perpetual and Hermes H hour are both great choices for a premium watch. Both feature simple analog faces for telling time, with metal casings for extra security.

These type of watches are good for making impressions such as:

  • Job interviews
  • Negotiating salaries
  • Weddings
  • Business lunches
  • Presentations

They can even work with business casual wear or wear that is not so formal. Just be wary  of wearing one in a pair of sweatpants. Gives off the wrong attitude.

Sport Watches

A bulky boy keeping track of how many steps you’ve taken on your morning hike. These types of watches are tireless beasts, designed to keep up with you.

Watches like the Garmin Instinct Solar Sport watch are integrated with a step counter and even a heart beat monitor so you can track your hussle.

Usually featuring metal or durable plastic casings and adjustable bands, these are bigger watches, not meant for fitting nicely under a sleeve.

They aren’t terrible looking watches, just a different aesthetic that lends itself more to casual wear and outdoor activities. They might also feature bright colors here and there that aren’t formal-wear appropriate.

These are great for:

  • Going Camping
  • Working out
  • Casual dinner with a loved one
  • Parties
  • Running Errands

They might not work everywhere, but they generally aren’t ugly by no means and can be paired with a variety of fits.

But if you wear a G-Shock to dinner with your boss, you’re like David Spade trying to be a serious actor, unholy and in bad taste.


Digital Watches

The ugly brother of the watch group, digital watches are a more relaxed time-piece option, benefitting the casual errand runner more than the CEO.

They are usually constructed out of durable plastic and have faces that display time in a digital manner rather than the hands on the dial of regular watches.

They also tend to come in a lot more colors than other types of watches, making them more of a fun time than a serious one.

The watch faces also tend to be bigger than other watches, and sometimes feature a keyboard, making them pretty sizable. These are definitely not meant for going to a wedding with.

These watches are great for:

  • Running errands
  • School
  • Office work
  • Casual wear
  • Being funky + looking funky

Smart Watches

A new player to the watch game and one that seems to encompass what all other watches can be.

Smart watches are just that: they connect to your phone, have all the features of a sports watch, have added entertainment capabilities, and are the most versatile of the bunch.

Smart watches have the benefit of interchangeable faces and straps. That means you can literally switch up your watch’s entire look without ever having to get a new one.

Plus, they can also be presented as a sports watch, a dress watch, or a casual one. Blending in like a chameleon, they can go with sweatpants just as well as suits.

The Apple Watch is a classic example, coming in a variety of colors and coming in at a price point that is a lot more affordable for the average person than the $3,000+ that dress watches can cost.

They have so much to offer,  they are kind of hard not to love.

Just remember, take advantage of how you can change the look of the smart watch, as faces and bands will need to be changed out to keep up with your many outfits.

These watches win at:

  • Weddings
  • Church
  • Parties
  • Errands
  • School
  • Business meetings
  • Pretty much any occasion!

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How a Watch Should Fit

We all have different bodies and the same is true for our wrists. What fits for your rich Uncle Dan isn’t going to be the same for you.

A watch, ideally, should sit at just about the center of your wrist, or about an half an inch to an inch away from the palm of your hand.

It also shouldn’t be squeezing the life out of you. These are watches, not handcuffs. It is equally true that they not be too loose either, or leave too much of the band hanging off.

Opt for a band holder if you need to tighten or go to a watchmaker to have your watch refitted if you have gained or lost weight, as they can help remake the band for you.

There is also the matter of whether the watch is more masculine or feminine. Feminine watches tend to be slimmer and lack a lot of the excessive features that men’s watches do.

If you prefer a more ornamental look, feminine watches are the way to go, but they appear much smaller on your wrist and often don’t make you look more masculine.

However, it is ultimately your choice, and if you can pull it off, you might as well go for it.