When it comes to fashion, men are somehow the “unfortunate” one, and this is especially true for businessmen and professionals. Seriously, besides the suit and tie, we have no make-up, accessories, or handbags. The only thing that can really show our taste(and status for some) is the ever-faithful wrist watch. A watch is probably the most important accessory a man can ever own. The watch that you wear to occasions or functions will either make or break the impression that you project when meeting people. It’s just like a girl choosing a wrong lipstick color or wearing a pair of sandals instead of heels.Therefore, here are some of my suggestions on how to look for a decent watch (under the $500 range of course! ) without breaking your wallet, or burning a hole through your pocket, while looking good and keeping the missus happy at the same time:

 

  • STYLE
This is probably the first thing that one would consider when choosing a watch. This is like the “first impression”. Choosing a decent watch is no science at this stage. The decision that we make at this stage will probably be purely based on the styling and the design of the watch itself, which if not appealing, would be meaningless even if that watch has 200 functions.It might be a good idea if you know whether you like a bigger or smaller size watch, or if you want a sports watch or a dress watch, and if you want a stainless steel bracelet or a leather one. Pick something that would suit you and your lifestyle.

  • FUNCTIONALITY

Nowadays, a watch is not merely a watch anymore. Some of them can tell you a lot more than that.  Watches like the Citizen Men’s JY8035-04E “Navihawk” has a number of functions for everyday users as well as for pilots, while the Casio Men’s PRW2500T-7CR Pathfinder has functions like altimeter, thermometer, barometer, and tide and moon data suited for the outdoor enthusiasts.

On the other hand, if you want to have a simple watch that looks great with some basic functions, you are probably looking for the date function, or maybe with chronograph, like the  Tissot Tradition Classic Chronograph Rose Gold-plated Mens Watch T0636173603700.

If you are someone who wants a small computer on your wrist that can connect to your phone and be able to read messages without pulling out your phone, the Pebble Smartwatch would be a good choice. If you are looking for a watch to track your fitness goal and help you along the way, the Suunto Ambit2 GPS Heart Rate Monitor could be a safe bet.

There are a lot of great watches out there, catered for different markets with different needs.

So ask yourself this question : “What functions do I need, and what would I use my watch for?”

  • PRACTICALITY

When it comes to practicality, it is crucial what you know what you actually NEED rather than what you actually WANT.

If you are looking for a dive watch, you wouldn’t choose a dress watch with 30m water resistance.

If you wear your watch to work, and you happen to work in the construction field, it is probably not a good idea to wear a watch with a leather strap, and is prone to scratches.

Think carefully of how you would use your watch for, and then choose the watch style, the case material, the window material, and the strap material. Then you have to think of the factors like water resistance, the power source, and the accuracy of the time keeping technology.

Go through some of these questions to really understand what is it that you are really looking for in a watch.

  • MOVEMENT

This is the most interesting part of the watch selection process. If you are not familiar with watch movements, most of the watches made nowadays are operated with any one of the following movements:

    • Quartz: Most common form of movement for watches and the clocks that we use at home. Essentially, you don’t have to wind it or leave it under the sun/light. Quartz-operated watch/clock run on batteries. Therefore, battery replacements will be needed every few years, depending on brand and model. Most famous ones are Swiss Quartz Movement and Japanese Quartz Movement. The cheaper one is the Chinese Movement.
    • Mechanical (automatic or manual): Automatic mechanical is one which is powered by the wearer’s arm or wrist movement whenever he/she is wearing the watch. Manual mechanical is one which needs to be winded manually. Normally, mechanical movements are less accurate (i.e. gain or lose a few seconds a day). However, these mechanical watches are highly appreciated by most watch aficionados as people love the craftsmanship and the artistry of the small parts all working together to accurately keep the time, and to this day, watch collectors are still mesmerized by this very element of the watch.   Having said that, good mechanical watches would cost a bit more than a quartz watch, and they require more maintenance (and love) from the owner.
    • Solar power: Watches that are operated with solar are normally charged through a solar cell located behind the dial. Some of the modern watches like the Citizen Men’s JY8035-04E “Navihawk” can even be charged with indoor/artificial light. Most people would choose solar-powered battery as they do not require much attention and no battery replacements are needed.
    • Others: Some brands might have their own technology to power their watches (often higher-ends) and so will not be discussed here.
  • PRICE

After all the considerations as mentioned above, it all comes down to this: The price. Unless you are really wealthy, most of us probably won’t be able to afford a Rolex or a  A. Lange & Söhne. However, that doesn’t mean that quality has to be sacrificed. Like all the reviews currently available on this site (will be updated on a regular basis), you will see that a quality watch can also be an affordable one!

Lastly, good luck in finding your watch, and have fun during the process! Remember: there is no such thing as a perfect watch. It all really comes down to personal preferences!