Even though many of us forget its importance, time is our scarcest resource and one of the universe’s most powerful forces. Why does it mean so much? Because once it’s gone, it’s gone for good. You can always earn more money, but you can never get extra time. You might want to use it wisely.
But, with all these everyday temptations, it’s tough to keep sight of the big picture. Scheduling and efficiently managing time is imperative since each day is reduced to a certain number of hours and we never know how many moments we still have left. Every second counts, whether at home or at work.
If time is a critical component of your life, then you will undoubtedly require a wristwatch to keep you personally liable. Many of you will argue that choosing to wear a watch in 2022 is superfluous. We all have smartphones. Why would I wear a watch when my phone keeps track of time?
The truth is.. we do not only look at the clock on our smartphones. Once we unlock the screen, we also check our notifications, scroll through social media, read e-mails and snap photos. We become distracted. In fact, there are a plethora of articles about how our digital devices waste our time instead of harnessing it. A wristwatch’s use is solely for the feature it serves, which is to keep a record of time.
Furthermore, timepieces enable people to express their taste in fashion. A watch represents freedom of expression, evoking images of elegance, adventure, or sports, depending on the model. Don’t you think there’s just something about it that carries an unfathomable weight of significance?
What Is a Dress Watch?
Picture yourself dressed to impress for the most extravagant event you have ever attended. You’re dressed up impeccably in a tux, looking more refined than you’ve ever appeared. You raise your cuff to check the time, and the fluorescent orange sports watch with its neoprene straps gleams colorfully on your wrist. Ups! There’s something completely improper here. That was supposed to be a dress watch.
Watches emerge in an array of designs, styles, and sizes, including dive, pilot, sports, and, needless to say, dress watches. The latter is usually reserved for more formal attire and is made to be worn with suits. However, as the guidelines for dress codes have been revised, the lines between what is acceptable and what is not in terms of fashion have become increasingly blurred.
In the traditional look, dress watches have a classy and straightforward design, with elegance being the key element. Apart from sophistication, tending to avoid extraneous complications, simplicity is what distinguishes them. Dress watches are the most traditional and formal timepieces on the market, and they usually come with a leather strap for a clean, timeless look.
How to Choose a Dress Watch?
For this kind of timepiece, less is truly more, but there is a definite charm in perfecting the basics. A great dress watch is traditionally wrapped in precious metals such as gold, titanium, or platinum, but there is nothing wrong with a beautiful, elegant watch in steel.
Moreover, all other elements must be simple and clear. Likewise, they are usually quite thin, allowing them to fit easily beneath the sleeve of a shirt without protruding excessively. The watch’s main function is to tell the time, so the dial must be clear and free of extraneous ornaments that would take away from that.
Classic colors such as white, black, cream, or navy blue are preferred, and the numbers are typically showcased plain and simple. They usually have hour indicators in the steel sword style and Roman digits. Arabic numerals are acceptable but should be kept as small as possible.
The Best Dress Watches for Men Right Now
All things considered, a dress watch should also be roughly proportional to the wearer’s wrist, or else it will grab the viewer’s attention for itself, which is the exact opposite of what it should do. Indeed, that is what a dress watch is all about: a piece of jewelry that immediately elevates the outward look, providing a contemporary, yet classy, visual effect to any attire, whether formal, business or casual.
Bearing in mind the similarity of dress watches, it’s easy to wind up with a piece that’s wonderful but common. The best of them are elegant and understated, but with very few distinguishing marks. For this reason, the difficult task is to balance conformity while also standing out. Then, how does one select a dress timepiece that fits the concept while also allowing the person wearing it to catch the eye?
Intending to alleviate your torment, we’ve rounded up a selection of the 25 best dress watches to boost your outfits. By the end of this article, you’ll know whether these are the watches for you or if you should perhaps put the money into something else.
25. F.P. Journe Octa Calendrier 38mm Watch
When the subject of newfangled contraptions and superior technology in the world of watchmaking comes up, the name Francois-Paul Jour is almost certain to rise. A select group of artisans crafts movements deftly, each member being hand-picked by Francois-Paul himself.
A 38mm platinum case houses the F.P. Journe Octa Calendrier, which features a black dial and a black hand alligator strap. It’s magnificent and flawless.
24. Breitling Premier Automatic 40mm Watch
Breitling’s original Premier watch had a strong say in fashion and was the ideal side dish to the extraordinary changes occurring throughout the world in the 1940s. Even though its overall look is attractive, with just enough details to spice things up, the Breitling Premier watch is clearly conservative.
It will not cause an alarm or raise a pulse, but instead, it will adhere to the brand’s goal of creating an alluring timekeeper that is simple to wear.
23. Ophion 786 Velos 39mm Watch
Since its early beginnings in 2015, Ophion has made a name for itself by providing exceptional quality products at an affordable cost. Their latest launch, the Ophion 786 Velos, continues this trend. The dial, the finishing, and most importantly, the movement, all work in unison to create a timepiece that is remarkable in the best possible manner.
22. A. Lange & Sohne Saxonia Thin 37mm Watch
The outcome of the Cold War and the collapse of communist regimes brought a slew of positive and negative changes to the world. The rebirth of A. Lange & Sohne was one of the good results of the fall of the Berlin Wall. However, this is not a watch for all.
Although its convenient size and subdued design enable it to fade into the background and beneath the shirt cuff, they also constrain its mass appeal. We’ll be the first to admit that Instagram isn’t going to be interested in it.
21. Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda 1950 40mm Watch
Tonda is derived from the Venetian word Tondo, which alludes to the round case of the watch, while 1950 was Mr. Parmigiani’s birth date. This watch is aimed at being a representative of what is still an infinitesimally tiny group of timepieces: the everyday dress watch of a white-collar worker.
Parmigiani creates a beautiful marriage between traditional Swiss watchmaking and up-to-date innovation and engineering.
20. Longines Flagship Heritage 38.5mm Watch
The Heritage designs pay homage to the entrepreneurial spirit that has kept Longines going since its beginning.
The Longines Flagship shows three things that make the brand popular around the world: its concept, which is based on the brand’s own history while still being modern; its flawless finish; and, lastly, its advantageous price, which would not have been possible without the Swatch Group’s money and facilities.
19. Oris Aquis Date Relief Automatic 43mm Watch
The Oris Aquis Date Relief is a high-yield diver’s watch, inspired by Oris’s mission to boost public awareness of the benefits of water. The brand has perfected the skill of combining style icons with a sturdy Swiss movement at an affordable price tag, and the Date Relief is yet another absolutely stellar piece of work that will be praised by watch aficionados for years to come.
18. Slim d’Hermes 39.5mm Watch
Even though Hermes may be widely recognized for its highly sought-after Birkin bags rather than for top-end horology, the Slim d’Hermes watch appears likely to break all of the rules. Classic finish of the highest standard, perfect distribution, and a dial that exemplifies true refinement combine to create one of the most stylish dress watches ever.
17. Nomos Glashutte Orion Neomatik Datum Automatic 41mm Watch
Designed with the outstanding DUW 3001 movement, the Nomos Glashutte Orion Neomatik Watch is a work of meticulous German engineering and craftsmanship. When you look at this new model, you can see that the layout is simple and clean, but it still has a lot of charisma thanks to the perfect blend of all the artistic details, like the shape, the thin casing, and the gently rounded lugs.
16. Junghans Max Bill Automatic 38mm Watch
The tale of Max Bill and Junghans begins in the 1950s with the configuration of the kitchen clock with a buzzer. Nowadays, the brand has become committed to producing timepieces that excel in terms of effectiveness, creative design, classical craftsmanship, and trailblazing technology.
The Junghans’ timekeeper is a clear winner due to its distinctive styling, alluring heritage, and sturdy German building. With “style outside, precision inside” as a motto, it appears to be as prevalent today as it was more than half a century ago, and it will continue to stay so for another 50 years.
15. Zenith Captain Power Reserve 40mm 18-Karat Rose Gold Watch
The power reserve was an important component of marine chronometers, enabling accurate longitude measurement. On the deck, this tool was handled with great care because its reliability was very important to the survival of the crew.
The Zenith Captain Power Reserve watch is an exquisite timepiece with a simple showcase. It is available in a variety of colors and is one of Zenith’s more budget-friendly timepieces.
14. Montblanc Heritage Automatic 40mm Watch
Founded in 1906 in Germany, Montblanc quickly gained worldwide recognition as a producer of writing tools. Even though its timepieces are not as advanced in years as their other Montblanc fellows, they are well-established and when it comes to craftsmanship, Montblanc’s wristwatches are on par with the pinnacle of the Alps.
Therefore, it is correct to conclude that if you decide to buy the Montblanc Heritage watch, you’ll be able to show off your wrist boldly, knowing that you have invested in an iconic, eloquent chronometer that will live up to your expectations.
13. Maurice de Mauriac L1 42mm Coated Stainless Steel Watch
Maurice de Mauriac’s watches are like a doctrine. They have something to say, a narrative, and a conclusion. Taking design cues from bohemian and mainstream Zurich, Fabian Schwaerzler’s wristwatches are all powered by precision.
Maurice de Mauriac’s minimalist and ultramodern L series are predicated on the assertion that a timepiece should be functional above all. But unlike other dress watches, this one is not soft in appearance. It is more thorough, slightly more manly, and, in our opinion, nails the majority of the details.
12. Tag Heuer Carrera Automatic 39mm Steel and Alligator Watch
Tag Heuer’s avant-garde timepieces are concise, high-tech, and aim to challenge the status quo. The Carrera collection is a broad umbrella that has seen an eclectic mix of models emerge and disappear over the years, ranging from technical precision-machined chronographs to charming time-only designs.
As a good thing, TAG recently streamlined and refocused the Carrera watches to be more elegant and fashionable. This one, with its alligator leather strap, is definitely a posh dress watch.
11. Bell & Ross BR V1-92 Automatic 38mm Watch
It is said that pilots have one of the most perilous jobs in the world. People who fly for a living encouraged Bell & Ross to make watches that are easy to understand and trustworthy. When a watch is fairly simple, like this one, the small details become even more important.
The Bell & Ross BR V1-92 is big enough to be effortlessly read but small enough not to get in the way of what you’re doing. On the short end of the second hand, a miniature stylized airplane shows once more how the luxury watch brand is linked to aviation.
10. Omega De Ville Tresor Co-Axial Master Chronometer Watch
Omega is well-known as being the first timepiece to travel to the moon, but it was also the U.S. Army’s first approved watch manufacturer when the war began in 1918. In total, they’ve kept track of the minutes and seconds for over twenty Olympic competitions and made a name for themselves in pop culture as the official wristwatch of James Bond.
The Omega De Ville Tresor is a beautiful dress watch because it has very clean lines, a crisp dial with imposed stick markings, and very sleek hands.
9. Cartier Tank Americaine Automatic 45mm Watch
Cartier was conceived in 1847, when Louis-Francois Cartier, then 28, decided to take hold of a store on Paris’s 29th rue Montorgueil. Ever since, Cartier’s atypical watch complications and elaborate mechanisms have propelled the brand to the leading edge of the main watch producers.
The Tank Americaine is a Cartier masterpiece, and its history is intrinsically tied to that of the First World War. Actually, the layout is so distinctive that you can instantly recognize the watch. Cartier has done an excellent job of spicing up what would otherwise be a completely boring design. The black Roman numerals, the blue steel hands, and the blue sapphire crown are all present.
8. Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon 39mm Stainless Watch
Jaeger-LeCoultre is a brand that requires little introduction. Those that know their game when it comes to deluxe timepieces are already familiar with the name and what it stands for. Truth be told, the Swiss company is unquestionably regarded as a horological aristocracy with qualifications that defy all skepticism.
Tempered is the best way to describe this Jaeger-LeCoultre moonphase watch. Even if there is nothing truly groundbreaking about the dial, the brand has a special manner of refining even the simplest features. Hence, the watch’s mellow angles and overall slimness make it easy to slip beneath a sleeve.
7. Patek Philippe Calatrava 5227 Watch
Obviously, the Swiss watch sector is extremely bloodthirsty. Having been in business for 183 years, Patek Philippe has amassed a vast quantity of knowledge and expertise handed down from one clockmaker to the next. Despite the brand’s long history, the company isn’t stuck in the past.
The refined and upscale Patek Philippe Calatrava is the owner of one of the most comfortable leather straps. It has exquisitely polished materials and incredibly intricate, slightly curved slots. Thus, despite its streamlined and sophisticated appearance, which might seem very common to the inexperienced eye, it is one of the few dress watches that have everything done by the book.
6. Piaget Altiplano 40mm 18-Karat Rose Gold Watch
Piaget’s unbroken 148-year history has allowed the company to develop its special expertise in the fields of jewelry and timepieces. Although the Piaget Altiplano isn’t a new player on the market, since it was established in 2014 as the slimmest wristwatch, it still resides in the sanctified realms of the ultra-thin.
This watch is 3 mm thick, 40 mm wide, and has a sealed back. According to the above definition of a dress watch, we could say it is exactly what you would expect. Tuxedo? Yes, without a doubt. Business attire? It’s a great match. The best news is that it also looks fantastic with much more casual ensembles.
5. Rolex Cellini Time Watch
Rolex has become so ingrained in our society that it has ended up meaning much more than a high-end watch. It has become synonymous with fortune, triumph, fashion, and efficiency. Connoisseurs purchase Rolex due to its exceptional quality. Other Rolex consumers, although unfamiliar with watches, know that Rolex is the best. In simple terms, if you’re going to wear an expensive watch, it has to be a Rolex.
With a long history of striving for perfection in everything, Rolex timepieces are among the highest quality watches on the market. The Cellini Time’s subtle, concise dial pays homage to time-honored vintage watches’ guidelines while elegantly modernizing them. It is a legendary timepiece, almost from some other time in history, fine-tuned to mastery, making it annoyingly flawless to even take a gander at.
4. Baume & Mercier Classima Automatic 40mm Stainless Steel Watch
Throughout its 190-year history, Baume & Mercier has established itself as a bullfighter in the world of timepieces. The brand’s fundamental heritage has been built around the concept of valuing life’s greatest pivotal points and experiences. The Baume & Mercier Classima watch is a good example of the brand’s artisanal culture mixed with new ideas and top-notch performance.
With the “Swiss made” tag, the brand embodies skilled craftsmanship through the elegantly inspired timepieces it promises. The Classima watch stays true to this original venture of quintessential, discrete elegance and combines subtle excellence with engineering prowess. Moreover, the brand’s witty use of refined materials illuminates the rather old-fashioned Classima on your wrist.
3. IWC Portofino Automatic 40mm Stainless Steel Watch
The International Watch Company (IWC) is best known for manufacturing the world’s finest pilot watches. The authentic Pilot Watch’s remarkable conical crown traces back to the highly innovative days of aviation when pilots were forced to battle the elements in unventilated cockpits. The brand’s special emphasis on aviation wristwatches continues to this day, but its product range does not end there.
The living embodiment of good taste, named after an Italian village, the IWC Portofino needs no presentation. It is not intended to be trendy, but rather to have a classy elegance that can be worn for many years to come. Moreover, you can pair it with nearly any outfit without looking out of its element.
2. Girard-Perregaux 1966 Automatic 40mm Alligator Watch
Following in the footsteps of its forefathers, Girard-Perregaux has consistently developed and offered watches that aspire toward becoming symbols and has done so since the brand’s inception in 1791. Its reputation, along with perseverance, skill, self-control, and finesse, is the secret formula that makes the Girard Perregaux 1996 watch so well-known and unique.
Girard-Perregaux has over 80 certified patents and has been dedicated to the development of cutting-edge Haute Horlogerie for centuries. This timepiece is a modern version of the iconic model from 1966.
Featuring a stylish case that is discreetly curved to fit comfortably on your wrist, it also boasts a gleaming ivory-colored dial, exquisitely detailed with slim indicators and two coordinating hands for excellent visibility.
1. Vacheron Constantin Patrimony Automatic 40mm Watch
Regardless of whether it is retro-styled or contemporary, a Vacheron Constantin watch is an absolute godsend in terms of style, complications, craftsmanship, and legacy. For these and other reasons, we decided to award it the blue ribbon.
Vacheron Constantin has developed innovative, out-of-the-ordinary watches for more than 260 years, revealing some of the world’s most intricate timepieces. Held by the Richemont Group, the brand lives up to its legend even today.
People who buy a Vacheron watch typically have high regard for impressively designed and complicated timepieces, but also enjoy keeping a low profile when choosing to wear one. This Vacheron Constantin watch is one of those pieces that appear to have arrived in 2022 via time travel from the 1950s.
Even though the case is straightforward, it manages to find that state of equilibrium between simple elegance and dull easiness. Uncomplicated sophistication, the desire to serve rather than show, and pure grace all perfectly describe the Vacheron Constantin Patrimony watch.
It is said time is the most sagacious counselor of all, and, as with everything else in life, there are no clear rules. Some of them are meant to be broken. Trends ebb and flow. The ones that endure the ravages of time become classics. Thus, a high-end watch introduces the concept of valuing objects and comprehending their quintessential design. And that is a fairly significant lesson.