We women have always been trendsetters, and that’s especially true for watches. It is a relatively undisputed fact that Caroline Bonaparte (1782-1839), Napoleon’s younger sister and the queen of Naples, wore one of the very first wristwatches.
Even though a lot has changed in the watch industry over the centuries and the 20th century saw a major shift toward men’s models, we ladies have once again found our place in the watch world.
Which watch makes sense?
Although there are still more male watch enthusiasts than female, more and more women are acquiring a taste for timepieces – and the timing couldn’t be better since the selection has never been so diverse. What used to be considered a typical men’s watch is now seen as unisex, and rightfully so.
However, this vast selection presents the first (and not so terrible) problem, particularly when it comes to getting started in the watch world: What fits? Of course, I’m not just talking about the actual size of the watch but also questions like: Which watch fits my budget? Is it worth investing a bit more now, even as an inexperienced buyer, in order to have more long-term satisfaction? Which watches can be worn when, and what are the advantages and disadvantages of the different models for my everyday life?
Let me share with you which watches I wear over the course of a day, why I chose them, how they work, and what makes them so special to me and, perhaps, soon to you as well!
8:00 AM: Off to Work
We’ve all been there: You walk into the room, hang up your jacket, put down your bag, and slump into your chair. Exhale. At the point when most people probably turn on their computers, I first take a look at my wrist. What I usually see then is a Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight. Why?
The Fifty-Eight is Tudor’s remake of a classic diving watch they introduced back in – you guessed it – 1958. Like its larger sister company, Rolex, Tudor is known for manufacturing outstanding diving watches.
The stainless steel Fifty-Eight is no bulky tool watch. At 39 mm in diameter, it fits very nicely, even on smaller wrists.
The case’s classic shape is rounded off with a lovely detail on the crown, a Tudor rose.
The matte black dial contrasts beautifully with the white indices and hands, making the watch very easy to read.
The rose gold accents are particularly beautiful: While the hands are gold-plated and not solid gold, that doesn’t detract from their appearance.
I like to time my coffee breaks with the rotatable bezel, so you definitely don’t have to be a deep-sea diver to make the most of this watch.
If you wear it to the office every day, you don’t have to worry about winding it. The BB58 is an automatic watch, which means that it winds itself using the motion of your arm. It also has a power reserve of 70 hours.
Even if you put it away Friday evening, it will be ready to go again Monday morning.
It’s also water resistant to 200 m (656 ft), so thorough hand-washing is no problem at all.
You can get this watch on a steel bracelet or with a NATO or leather strap.
My advice is to buy the Fifty-Eight on a steel bracelet and find yourself a nice leather strap separately. That’s how you can get the best value for money while also pulling of diverse looks.
12:30 PM: Break Time
I try to get out for my lunch break as often as possible. Once a week, I take care of our family dog, which means going out into nature.
So, what should you wear when practicality matters most? For me, one brand clearly stands out from the rest: Casio. Those of you who like to keep things as simple and practical as possible will want to pay close attention here.
You can’t really go wrong with a Casio, especially with classic models like the F-91W.
The F-91W has a lot to offer for a very low price: It boasts a solid and downright stylish case, good readability, high comfort on the wrist, and a digital quartz movement – that means you only have to change the battery every seven years! And that’s only if it’s in full-time use. This watch has an alarm, a stopwatch function, and a screen you can illuminate to easily tell the time in the dark.
What I really like is that Casio is always reinterpreting their classics, so you have a lot of different models, colors, and materials to choose from.
All of that goes to show that, even with relatively inexpensive timepieces, you don’t have to compromise on aesthetics.
4:30 pm: The Home Stretch!
These days, many of my meetings and conversations are held online via Skype or other similar platforms. However, in order to keep up personal connections, I like to arrange video chats.
When the afternoon meetings start, I grab more than just a coffee – this is the perfect time for recharging my energy with a colorful watch dial!
The effect is even stronger when paired with a square case. Such watches remind me of the old black-and-white Hollywood films where the actresses don elegant watches.
Luckily, we live in a world of color, and for moments like this, I love the Tetra Grenadine by NOMOS.
NOMOS is the embodiment of the Bauhaus style, and this German manufacturer from Glashütte delivers a lot of bang for your buck!
The Tetra comes with an in-house movement, which means that it’s manufactured and processed under at NOMOS’ facilities – something that’s far from a given in the watch world.
The Grenadine belongs to the NOMOS Petit Four collection (French for “little oven”), and these watches are just as sweet as their namesake confections. NOMOS offers several color options – Grenadine just happens to be my personal favorite.
The dial here is a very bright but not gaudy reddish orange that makes me think of summer and sun.
With its steel case, sapphire crystal, and gray velour leather strap, the Tetra Grenadine is a robust and very comfortable everyday business watch that can easily join you on your after-hours adventures as well.
And as a little bonus, the eye-catching design can be a great ice-breaker in meetings to get the conversation flowing smoothly!
8:00 PM: Date Night
I enjoy going out to eat with friends on the weekend, but sometimes I have something a bit more romantic in mind. When there’s an occasion for me and my husband to dine on more than just the usual pizza from around the corner, I like to have something fancy on my arm.
Since I’m very practically minded during the day, I love to go a bit wild in the evening when it comes to design.
And that’s the perfect time for my 36-mm Rolex Datejust!
Although this version of the Datejust used to be a classic men’s dress watch, today it’s one of the most popular Rolex models among women.
What I really appreciate about the Datejust is its diversity. There are older models as small as 24 mm, and the largest ones in current production measure 41 mm in diameter. Then there are the countless dial variations, strap options, bezel designs, and materials. It’s easy to find yourself diving down the rabbit hole!
The standard Datejust is defined by its ridged bezel – which, incidentally, is white gold on every model – and five-piece link Jubilee bracelet.
Conveniently, there’s also a date display, which is especially worth admiring on anniversaries or other special occasions.
If you can’t decide which one to get, I’d recommend the standard edition with a case between 31 and 36 mm in diameter and a relatively simple black or white dial with Roman numerals or line indices.
By the way, this Rolex classic can also be worn during the day without issue since Rolexes are among the most robust everyday watches thanks to the particularly strong 904L steel alloy and their exceptionally durable movements.
And the best part is: Rolex watches typically retain their value. You can track the performance of your particular model very easily in the Watch Collection right here on Chrono24!
Check it out!
Those were my four choices for the day. The best thing about watches as a hobby is that there’s always more to discover. If you’re still not sure which watch you want to accompany you in the future, here’s my recommendation: Let yourself be inspired by the models described here and see which one fits you best!
The NOMOS Tangente Neomatik 41 Update: Do its size and date display make for a better watch?
Downhill, Snowboarding, and Sledding: Watches for Winter Adventures