Rhys and Ross switch my Irish wristwatch for a Swiss wristwatch
October 22, 2010 11:37 AM   Subscribe

[Wristwatchfilter] Me: mid-20s male looking for the perfect men's analog wristwatch for my dainty wrists. Easy-to-set alarm a strong plus. You: experienced in these matters and willing to share your insight. Go!

I've never found a wristwatch that I like wearing. Even though I'm around computers for 80% of my waking life, and have my phone on me for 99% of it, I realize that I need to wear a watch.

This is my current watch, an inexpensive Timex I got at Wal-Mart a decade ago-- with a ruler for scale, and in context on my wrist. (Yeah, I don't know why my hand looks so sickly. Sorry.) I wish it were about 3-5 mm smaller in diameter. It's a bit hard to see, but I measure the main body of the watch at 37-38 mm in diameter. Or maybe I have the wrong type of band, too-- would a wider band help the watch face not seem so disproportionate? A cuff-type watch, even? Or metal maybe?

I also wish it had an alarm. I used to have one of Timex's turn-and-pull alarm watches, like this, and loved the way it set, but I remember it still being too big on my wrist.

I really like the styling of these two Skagens. Simple, understated, low-profile. The Amazon prices are a pretty good ballpark for what I'm willing to spend. (I.e., definitely less than $100. Pref less than $75. ~$50 would be excellent.) Looks like they're the right size too. But of course, wish they had an alarm.

Willing to go digital if that's the only way to get an easy alarm function, provided that it's something simple and understated, like this, maybe. (I might end up expecting a lot more out of a digital watch, though, like syncing with my Gcal automatically. A pimped-out version of the Data-link would be sweeeeet.) I hate the look of chronograph watches; even the Timex Expedition with the convenient alarm linked above is a little "busy".

Any thoughts? Is my perfect wristwatch a unicorn?

'Cause that would be awesome.
posted by supercres to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (15 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I am a 37-year-old man with the wrists of a 12-year-old waif.

Forget the band. You'll never find the watch you want with a strap that works for your wrists. Invest in the watch you want, then go to a proper jeweler's and (maybe) get a new watchstrap that looks good with it; the jeweler will be able to punch new holes in a leather band, or drop links from a steel band. They should be able to do that for any watch strap regardless, but if you get a new one they'll throw it in for free.
posted by Shepherd at 11:54 AM on October 22, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I was going to suggest a Skagen for what you want, but I can see you got there, already. The thing is, once you're talking about alarms on watches, you're getting into the realm of overwieldy "gadget watches" which are not what you're looking for.

The solution is to set an alarm on your cell phone and have your watch limited to simple activities like time-telling.
posted by deanc at 12:00 PM on October 22, 2010 [1 favorite]

I'm not gonna make any conclusions about what looks good or not on your size wrist, but I've had a Citizen on my wrist constantly for the past 15+ years.

Currently wearing this one, and I love it. Not the most expensive, but not the cheapest either. Yeah it's a little on the gadget-y side, but it's solid, robust, looks good at work or at play, and can take a beating as well as go for a swim.

To me a watch is an investment and a statement, not simply a way to tell time.
posted by matty at 12:06 PM on October 22, 2010

Best answer: I'm almost 50 and I have the wrists of a coked out Kate Moss.
I used to look at watches that had a smaller face, a slimmer band, and they worked okay, but always seemed lacking.
So I did what any man does when he realizes he's got something smaller than other men.
He over compensates!

I went larger, with the thicker leather band and larger face watch (something like this Fossil watch) and it actually works.

I have no idea how or why, but it actually looks really good and I like the way it fits and feels.

My .02. I'll definitely be watching this thread for other ideas.
posted by willmize at 12:11 PM on October 22, 2010 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: matty: The Citizen website is making me want to hurt things, and your link went straight to the front page. Do you have a link to a retailer or something?

deanc: Figured that might be the case. Your solution is my fallback position if I can't have it all.

Thanks for the answers so far!
posted by supercres at 12:12 PM on October 22, 2010

Response by poster: Also: lolling at the "I have the wrists of..." analogies.
posted by supercres at 12:15 PM on October 22, 2010

Sorry, here it is on Amazon... Citizen SkyHawk. I don't remember paying this price for it though.
posted by matty at 12:16 PM on October 22, 2010

matty - If that qualifies as a little on the gadgety side then I'd hate to see an example of "gadgety as all hell". I mean, it's totally awesome, but I'm pretty sure my wife would divorce me if I tried to wear it.

And I would just like to point out that I have the wrists of a longshoreman. Suck it, haters.
posted by It's Never Lurgi at 1:13 PM on October 22, 2010 [1 favorite]

I guess levels of gadgety-ness is in the eye of the beholder. I mean come on, it DOESN'T have the GPS emergency locator beacon! (seriously)

OP, I've also worn a luminox from time to time... it's a good rugged watch, and manages to look classy even though it's totally not appropriate for a suit.

Also, I have the wrists of a coke bottle that spent a week lodged up a donkey's... oh never mind.
posted by matty at 1:20 PM on October 22, 2010

Invest in the watch you want, then go to a proper jeweler's and (maybe) get a new watchstrap that looks good with it; the jeweler will be able to punch new holes in a leather band, or drop links from a steel band.

This, many times over. Totally worth it.
posted by gimonca at 1:28 PM on October 22, 2010

I got a Pulsar (sub brand of Seiko) titanium solar powered watch off Ebay about a decade ago. Retailed for $225 and was shipped to me for a quarter of that. I like that it's titanium, generally lighter than a kinetic and as long as it's used somewhat regularly (can be in total darkness for six months), it'll stay both on, and on time. And properly adjusted (removing a couple band links), it fits my skinny wrists fine.
posted by liquoredonlife at 2:36 PM on October 22, 2010

I've had a Submariner for years but never liked wearing it. Too bulky, too heavy. I found a nice Chopard Mille Miglia and love wearing it daily. Turns out the Chopard really isn't much lighter than the Rolex. But the weight is better distributed throughout the metal band and watch. That and the contours are a lot smoother. Tag Hauer used to make some simpler ones but their current styles aren't to my tastes.

My suggestion is spend an afternoon in a really nice jewelry store that has a big selection of watches. Try them on and think about how they'd feel during daily use. I don't think I'd ever buy one sight unseen, no matter how well others recommended it. I'd have to feel it first then maybe find a better deal.
posted by wkearney99 at 6:11 PM on October 22, 2010

Have you ever considered a pocket watch? My son (17), is on the waif side also, and that was his solution.
posted by misha at 6:31 PM on October 22, 2010

As a final aside, if I could have and wear any watch in the world, it would be this Hamilton Ventura, but alas my wrists are just too damn small.
Rod Serling wore one.
I saw it during one of his Twilight Zone introductions and coveted it immediately.
posted by willmize at 10:54 AM on November 1, 2010

Response by poster: Okay. Going to go with the Skagen. (Pronounced ska-yen. Who knew?)

Thanks, all, for the suggestions.
posted by supercres at 10:32 AM on November 2, 2010

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