Not all style rules are created equal.
Take watches – if you’re into them, you’ve heard that certain types of watches go with certain types of clothes.
And that’s true…usually. But what about when it’s not?
Below are ten common bits of advice about wearing a watch that you can feel free to play with – or even outright ignore.
One rule I’m breaking right now? Wearing a G-SHOCK with a suit. Check out the video below to see how beautiful it looks. G-SHOCK is today’s sponsor and they’ve surpassed themselves with the G-SHOCK MTGB1000-1A – this watch displays accurate time anywhere in the world using Bluetooth or radio waves.
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Without further ado, I've got 10 watch rules every gentleman should follow.
Watch Rule 1. Wear Your Watch On The Non-Dominant Hand
The idea here is pretty simple: if you're right-handed you wear your watch on the left hand and vice versa.
The trouble here is that since most people are right-handed, the hardware on watches tends to be placed with wear on the left hand in mind – so if you follow this rule strictly as a lefty, the pushers or crown of the watch could start to get in your way.
At the end of the day, you should wear your watch where it’s most comfortable and functional for you. That will depend on the particular design you’re wearing as well as plain old individual preference.
Watch Rule 2. No Bling Watches
Understated style is often the most timeless style, so it’s tempting to act like this is a hard and fast rule. Fact is, though, an outfit that’s sober and traditional from head to toe leaves little room for personal expression.
If a flashy watch is where you want to flaunt your unique taste, and you have the confidence to pull it off, go for it. Yes, they’re functional, but nowadays especially, they’re also jewelry.
Watch Rule 3. Match Watches To Clothes
This infographic has recommendations on how to choose a watch for every level of formality. But these are guidelines. You CAN bend them if you do it for the right reasons.
It’s traditional not to wear a watch with black tie dress, for instance. But if you have an heirloom watch that means something to you and it’s dressy enough to pair with a suit, you might decide to wear it to a wedding or a gala anyhow.
At the end of the day, it's important to know how to match your watch with your outfit but remember the rules serve you – you don’t serve them.
Watch Rule 4. Don’t Wear A Watch That’s Too Tight Or Too Loose
Okay, so there’s no real reason to break or even bend this rule. Wearing a watch too loose isn’t good for it – you’re more likely to break the band and bang up the mechanisms. And wearing it too tight just hurts your wrist.
Watch Rule 5. Don’t Check Your Watch When Speaking With Someone
Checking your watch is a lot less obvious than checking your phone, but it’s still pretty rude. It sends a message that you need to be somewhere else or that you’re bored. You may as well yawn in their face.
Knowing how to be a modern gentleman is about controlling the signals you send to the world. That’s one signal most people don’t control.
Watch Rule 6. Don't Touch Another Man's Watch
Actually, you can go ahead and break this one… IF he gives you permission. Some guys will just take off their $100,000 watches and hand them to you to hold… it's a little rude to refuse under those circumstances!
Just don't touch without consent. (This is a good life rule!)
Watch Rule 7. Match Metals And Match Leathers
This rule refers to the leather band on your watch matching your belt and your shoes, and the metal matching any other pieces of jewelry, buckles, and so on.
Again, this is a base guideline. It looks good, it's a good place to start – but if you wear a gold wedding ring and you want a steel watch, or a gold/steel blend, you don't have to follow that rule.
Likewise, if you've got a dark brown leather, you could wear black with it.
The key is to understand the rule and to break it by choice, rather than by accident.
Watch Rule 8. Wear Dark With Dark, Wear Light With Light
This rule refers to the dial color – it means you should pair a dark dial with a dark outfit and a light dial with a light outfit. This is NOT a rule that you have to follow.
Sure, coordinate your watches with your outfits if you want to. But don't worry if you like that white dial with your navy shirt.
Watch Rule 9. Rule Of Proportions – Watch Case Size
The rule of proportions dictates that a man with a smaller wrist should wear a watch with a smaller case. If you have larger wrists you can go for a larger watch case.
In general, this is a good rule, but you can bend and break it. Some watch brands have huge cases but look great on smaller wrists.
It really comes down to the placement of the lugs and the overall design. The key is that if you find a brand that suits you, you can break this rule.
Watch Rule 10. Don't Wear The Same Watch Every Day
Once you start getting obsessed with watches, all of a sudden you start collecting them.
Watches are like chips – it's hard to stop at just one.
This is not so much a rule as a fact of life. If you're just getting into watches, be warned… it's probably going to happen to you too.
So here's the rundown on these rules: should you obey them?
- Wear Your Watch On the Non-Dominant Hand – MAYBE
- No Bling Watches – MAYBE
- Know How To Wear A Watch That Matches Your Outfit – MAYBE
- Don’t Wear A Watch That’s Too Tight Or Too Loose – YES
- Don’t Check Your Watch When Speaking With Someone – YES
- Don't Touch Another Man's Watch
- Match Metals And Match Leathers – MAYBE
- Wear Dark With Dark, Wear Light With Light – NO
- Rule Of Proportions – Watch Case Size – MAYBE
- Don't Wear The Same Watch Every Day – Can you resist?
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