BUYING A WATCH: WHAT TO LOOK FOR
Buying a new watch is exciting. There is something special about a watch. Maybe it is because you spend most of the day or your life wearing it. Maybe because it represents an achievement in your life…a child is born, a 10-year anniversary at work. Either way, there are some key aspects to consider before you make your watch purchase.
- What type of watch are you looking for and why? If you are intending to buy a watch to wear while working out, you may want a watch that can handle some vibration and jarring. You may also want a watch that has a rubber strap. Rubber straps are most suited to cleaning from activities and an accumulation of body oils/salt (from sweating). Perhaps you would look at a G-shock? If you are looking for a watch that holds value and is a symbol of class and wealth, you may look at a Rolex or Patek Phillippe.
- Where to Buy: We are going to cover this in a future post, but want to convey the importance of shopping price. The biggest reason is that it educates the buyer on the true value of the watch. There are certain retailers who do not discount, while others provide a 20-30% discount. There are also authorized resellers and those who are considered “grey-market” dealers. Please read our post, “Watch Buying: What to Look for” for more in-depth clarification of this topic.
Important characteristics to consider:
- Watch Dial: You should look at this watch often and we recommend purchasing a dial that appeals to you and could stand the test of time without growing old. If you rush into your decision (especially on an expensive watch), you are stuck with a dial that you hate or cannot wear on a variety of occasions.
- Water resistance/water-proof: Typically a watch is resistance to 50 or 100M. If you intend on bathing with your watch, we recommend at least 50 or 100M. If you are planning on swimming in the ocean, at least 100M. If you are planning on scuba diving or engaging in water sports, we recommend a watch that is at least 200-300M.
- Crown: This also pertains to water-resistance. If water-resistance is an important characteristic to you, we recommend pursuing a watch that has a screw-in crown. Otherwise, if the crown is just push-in, despite the claim of water-resistance by the manufacturer, that feature greatly inhibits a watch’s water-resistance. A push-in crown is not as secure as a screw-in crown.
- Uni or bi-directional rotating bezel: A rotating bezel is important if you want to measure time that lapses. You simply rotate the bezel to the minute-hand and then note the time that’s passed. You look at the difference and where the minute-hand was and where it is now on the dial. This is a helpful tool if you are diving and need to measure time in the water. Perhaps even if you are cooking or playing in the bag yard with your kids. It is a useful tool if you think you would use it. This feature is common among Tag Heuer, Rolex, Breitling, and Omega watches.
- Watch Crystal: Most scratch-resistant watches are made of sapphire. If your watch has an acrylic or mineral crystal, you may want to be very careful as to not scratch your watch crystal. These crystals will scratch. A sapphire crystal is thicker and is very hard. Most watch owners only buy watches that feature a sapphire crystal. It is considered a delight to read the watch face – it is thicker, more luxurious, and often makes the watch dial more transparent or rich in color.
- Watch Case/Band/Strap: Once you decide whether you want a rubber, leather, or stainless steel (any metal) bracelet, we recommend becoming familiar with those which are quality and those which are not. If you are seeking a rubber strap, we recommend pursuing a vulcanized strap for the ultimate resistance to weather, impurities, etc. Quality rubber straps made by Omega, Tag Heuer, or Breitling are vulcanized. If you buy a leather strap, we advise finding out if the strap is either real leather or PU leather (fake, synthetic). If you are looking for a stainless-steel bracelet, we advise buying at least a bracelet that is made of 316L grade steel. This bracelet will resist wear and scratches much better than bracelets made of less quality steel. Rolex is the only manufacturer to use 904L grade steel for its watches (twice as expensive and used often for industrial purposes). If you think you may want to interchange bands, you may want to examine whether the manufacturer provides multiple band options or if a third party, such as Rubber B makes attractive options for you. In the watch world, it is not uncommon to switch and rotate bands over time, such as between rubber and stainless-steel bracelets.
It’s imperative once you’ve landed on the right watch to care for it properly. WristClean’s Watch Spray is an exceptional watch cleaner, developed for the watch owner. After wearing your watch, it will accumulate dirt and oils from your body (oils/salts generate), as well as from environmental impurities. You can learn more about WristClean’s Watch Spray, by visiting our website: