How To Wear Your Watch - A Brief Guide

How To Wear Your Watch - A Brief Guide

As you've clicked on this article, you've probably heard lots of different contradictory "rules" you need to follow when wearing a watch; what wrist to wear it on, when and where to wear each type etc and it can get a bit confusing.

To save you from going down the rabbit hole, we've summarized everything you need to know about how to properly wear a watch.

Pompeak gentlemens black and leather wrist shot

Image: Pompeak Gentlemens Black & Croc


Wear a watch on your left wrist… or your right!

The wrist you should be wearing your watch on comes down to you: if you’re right handed you should wear a watch on your left wrist, if you’re left-handed, wear a watch on your right. This isn’t a hard-and-fast rule but it ensures the watch doesn’t get in your way and constantly knocked.

Left vs right handed wearing of the Pompeak Gentlemens Classic Navy automatic watch

Left vs right handed wearing of the same Pompeak Gentlemen's Classic Navy


Wear the right watch to match your outfit

 To ensure you’re looking your best, you need to pick the watch that best accompanies your outfit. If you’re wearing an expensive suit, a super tough G-Shock watch is going to ruin your look, just like wearing old, battered shoes would. This also applies to wearing an expensive looking watch like a Rolex sub-mariner with sports shorts and a tee shirt.

 Rolex Submariner wrist shot

Watches should enhance your outfit, not distract from it.

Now, you don’t need a 15 or 20 piece watch collection to be able to complement your every outfit - carefully picking your collection will allow you to do this without spending a ridiculous amount of money. Picking watches with interchangeable straps will drastically increase the number of outfits they can be paired with.

Quick release pin on Pompeak interchangeable leather strap

Quick release pin on Pompeak interchangeable full grain leather strap


Watch, shoes, belt.

Although there are exceptions, a good rule to follow is to match you watch to your shoes and belt.

For example, tan shoes look great when paired with a brown leather belt, but a metallic black watch strap can skew the whole ensemble. Instead, choosing a brown leather-strapped dress watch can bring the whole outfit together, taking your style to the next level.

 Coordinated outfit flat lay - Brown watch belt shoes

A matching outfit makes all the difference


Where to wear your watch

Watches should be worn before your wrist bone, so you still get the full range of motion. Wearing the watch here also means it won’t draw excessive attention:

  • When paired with a shirt, little to none of the watch should be visible when standing.
  • When wearing a long sleeved shirt, the watch should only be fully visible when your arm is bent.
  • It goes without saying but never wear a watch on top of your shirt.

Watch wrist shotOmega Speedmaster Professional paired with a more casual outfit


The fit of the watch

It may sound obvious but to have the watch sitting comfortably before the wrist bone, the strap needs to be the correct size. Ideally, you should be able to squeeze an index finger between the strap and your wrist. If the watch leaves an imprint on your wrist – it’s too tight.

Women’s watches can be worn the same way or, alternatively, loose around the wrist like a bracelet.

Leather banded watches allow you to adjust the tightness yourself, but most metal band watches will need to be taken to a jewelers to achieve that perfect fit. (Some dress and sports watches do have a prong-and-notch system, allowing the size to be adjusted without the need for a tool).

Changing watch straps

Removing metal strap of the Pompeak automatic watch

Resizing or replacing of watch bracelets usually requires specific tools 


The watch face

Never wear a watch whose face is either too big or too small, just like Goldilocks, you need one that’s just right. The good news is that for most men; any watch face between 38mm and 42mm is perfect. For those with larger wrists, err on the larger side, upping the range to 40mm and 45mm, anything larger than this falls into the outdated trend of watches with huge faces.

For those with smaller wrists; 36mm to 40mm is ideal but definitely do not go above 42mm. Going too large can make your wrist look tiny or even that the watch is weighing you down.

Wearing a watch with the correct sized face not only complements your outfit better, but is also far more comfortable. Larger watches are usually heavier which can lead to wrist pain and may mean having to take a break from watches altogether.

FInding the perfect fitting watch

Find the perfect fit for you



Hopefully this brief guide will help you style your current watch or and give you something to think about when finding your next one. At the end on the day, watches are a very personal choice so find ones that you love, treat them well and you'll be able to keep it for life.

If you have questions, be sure to let us know in the comment or get in touch via our contact page.

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