How to Wear a Watch

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Wearing a Wrist Watch Properly

  • Formal watches are usually made of a precious metal (silver, gold, or platinum), and can be incredibly expensive, depending on brand and materials. [4]
  • Many people prefer a formal watch that is made of the same metal tone as the rest of their jewelry or accessories. For example, a woman who’s wearing a platinum necklace might prefer to wear a platinum, silver, or white gold watch, while a man who’s wearing gold cufflinks will usually prefer to wear a gold watch.[5]
  • Formal watches can be incredibly expensive, and are seen as a status symbol among men. If an expensive formal watch is not in your budget, consider foregoing the formal watch altogether; a cheap watch can carry a negative perception, while there are no consequences for not wearing a watch during these occasions.
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    Wear a sports watch. You can wear it as an everyday watch, or as a functional tool for running or working out. Sports watches can be made with rubber, plastic, or even fabric bands that are meant to be durable, sweat-resistant, and often water-resistant. Pay close attention to the instructions that come with the watch—they will tell you how far under water your watch can safely go.

    • Wear your sports watch when you will need to keep time, measure depth or speed, consult a compass, or when you will use other special features included.
    • Outside of athletic endeavors, you can wear your sports watch with a long sleeve shirt or even a tie to casual events.
    • Never wear a sports watch with a suit—this is the fashion equivalent of wearing sneakers with a tuxedo! It is considered to be in poor taste.[6]
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    Wear a dress watch for business dress or business casual. This would be appropriate with something slightly more dressed up than khakis and a polo, such as a shirt and jacket. Dress watches are usually more plain and simple than formal watches, and generally won’t have the same level of adornment that formal watches can have.[7]

    • Choose one with a thin black or brown leather band to wear at events that require semi-formal wear, business professional wear, or even business casual wear, including blazers with slacks or jeans, dresses, and trousers with a nice blouse or jacket.
    • Match your shoes and belt to your watch band. If your shoes are black, then don’t wear a watch with a brown band.
    • Buy multiple bands for your watch, so you can easily and inexpensively make your watch match your shoes and belt. Or, look for a band that is a mix of brown and black.
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    Wearing a Pocket Watch Properly

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      Choose a pocket watch if it fits your personal style. Pocket watches were once the norm, but have become more of a novelty. They appear distinctive and can add a lot of character to your look, if worn properly. Pocket watches are often passed down through families and inherited, so they can also carry sentimental value.[8]
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      Wear a pocket watch with a waistcoat. You should put the watch in the pocket that’s most convenient to you, then loop the watch chain through the waistcoat’s buttonhole and put the fob in the pocket on the other side. This will give you a subtle look of sophistication, while remaining functional.
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      Wear a pocket watch with khakis or jeans. Simply put your watch in the pocket that is most convenient, loop the watch chain through a belt loop and clip the watch to the belt loop, leaving the fob exposed. This will protect the watch and make it quick and easy to check.
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      Don’t be afraid to wear a pocket watch as a woman. Although they aren’t commonly worn by women, pocket watches can give women a great vintage look. Wear it around your neck on a long chain or fastened on a broach or pin to be attached on your shirt. Keep other accessories minimal if your women’s pocket watch is elaborate and highly decorative.
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