Watches are anything but outdated. They’re a deliberate style statement -- and one of few accessory choices for men. Watches are simultaneously timeless and modern, and instantly add class to any outfit (see 5 Timeless Reasons to Wear a Wristwatch).
However, just as you can’t wear a watch naked, it’s equally important to wear your watch right. A great outfit-watch combo will command respect from your authorities and peers alike. Even if you’re a “one watch man”, if you’re conscious of how your watch matches with your ensemble, you’ll look fashion-forward all the time.
Here’s some tips to consider when matching your watch with your outfit:
1. Think about your fashion style and the dress occasion
As a general rule, black watches are most suited for formal wear, while brown, gray and other neutral toned watches are more casual choices. Consider whether your fashion style is:
- Elegant / Formal
If you’re a man who lives for pampered suits or just someone who somehow always ends up in formal situations, consider buying as simple and minimalistic a watch as possible. Austere black watches with leather bands are the choice watch for formal occasions. In particular, ebony wood bands, with inlayed stainless steel, radiate that sleek and sophisticated look. Pay attention to the watch’s dial as well – the more minimalist, the more tastefully it will be perceived.
- Business Casual
Watches intended for business casual wear should mimic the same level of mod as watches for formal wear. An overall business casual ensemble appears the most polished when paired with a tan leather band watch. However, feel free to use your watch to add a pop of color where needed, especially if the rest of your outfit is muted. Make sure your wrist game isn’t too flamboyant; wear a watch with colorful hands instead.
If you have a sportier style, elect a watch with a colorful band to wear with your outfits; a sleek black leather watch would look too out of place. Plus, you wouldn’t want your watch to get lost too easily if you’re spending a day in the woods! The best watch for those outdoor adventures is one that’s as versatile and sturdy as possible.
Canvas bands, stitched with Italian leather, are great options.
Anything goes! Whether you’re traveling or hanging with friends, wear your favorite watch, no matter what material it is. But keep in mind that putting together a solid watch ensemble doesn’t just rely on your fashion style.
2. Match Colors
The myriad of watchband colors open up a world of outfit matching possibilities! You can never go wrong with matching your watchband’s color to the color of your shirt.
Your watchband can also complement your socks, tie, or even belt color.
3. Match Leather Styles
An easy way to ensure your outfit always looks clean is to match the style/color of your watchband to the leather style of your belt and/or shoes.
4. Mix Metals
If you’ve got a metal watch, matching the metal of a watchcase to your belt buckle, shoe buckle, ring, or cufflinks is a classic move. If you’ve got an especially keen eye, dare to mix metals, as both gold and silver are neutrals. Gold or rosegold watches match more earthen neutrals. Silver watches pair best with shades of grey, black, and blue.
5. Size Matters
Like bands, cases come in all shapes imaginable -- circular, square, rectangular, and even triangular. Round faces are the most versatile, suitable for every wrist size. Watches with larger diameters tend to frame larger men better, and smaller watches are a great fit for slimmer men.